Nobody has retained Big Cup since Milan in 1990. This state of affairs is usually held up as evidence of how much harder it is to win Europe’s premier pot in the modern era. After all, you couldn’t triumph these days simply by beating Östers Idrottsförening, Argeș Pitești, Berliner Dynamo, a declining Ajax and a Hamburg side whose star striker was dreaming of his big-money move to Southampton, as Nottingham Forest did when they kept hold of old big ears in 1980. Mind you, to be scrupulously fair, Forest only had the opportunity to do that by winning a 42-game league in the first place, then their first Big Cup, all the while knowing that one slip would bring an abrupt and terminal halt to their almost-certainly-never-to-be-
QUOTE OF THE DAY
“I’m personally desperate to get to the final and to try and win it. That’s the only thing that matters … There’s nothing else that matters” – Michael Carrick on the Big Vase final. He could take it or leave it.