Anything England can do: Recalling Blackpool's record 10-0 thrashing of Lanerossi Vicenza in the Anglo-Italian Cup
After England’s 10-0 thrashing of San Marino last night, it got us thinking...have Blackpool ever won a game by that margin?
The answer is yes, and to this day it remains Blackpool’s biggest ever win. But there’s far more to the tale than a one-sided scoreline.
In 1972, the Seasiders were the reigning holders of the Anglo-Italian Cup after beating Bologna 2-1 in the final.
Bob Stokoe’s side again made it to the final a year later after finishing the group stage with an unblemished record.
Unfortunately their tournament ended in disappointment on this occasion as they went down to a 3-1 defeat to Roma in the showpiece final, which was played in front of 75,000 fans at the Olimpico Stadium.
But it was the tale of their journey to the final which was most astonishing, including a victory in the group stage that took even the Seasiders by surprise – 10-0 over Lanerossi Vicenza, a club based only three hours away from San Marino.
Blackpool FC historian Gerry Wolstenholme provided the following account of this famous victory...
Blackpool 10-0 Lanerossi Vicenza
June 10, 1972, Bloomfield Road
The £10 bonus per goal that Blackpool were paid during the successful 1971 Anglo-Italian Cup competition cost the club dearly – 14 goals were scored in five games.
As a consequence the club did a cost-cutting exercise for the 1972 campaign and reduced the bonus to £5.
After the first two games in Italy they were probably glad they had, for Blackpool scored six – defeating Sampdoria 4-1 and Lanerossi Vicenza 2-0.
Two more goals without reply came in the home leg with Sampdoria, then at Bloomfield Road on June 10, 1972 came the result that really spared the funds ... Blackpool 10 Lanerossi Vicenza 0!
Blackpool made one change – Dave Hatton was injured so Terry Alcock stepped into the defence. The line-up was: Burridge, Alcock, Bentley, Suddaby, James, Ainscow, Hutchison, Suddick, Dyson, Hill and Burns.
Lanerossi were reportedly eager for revenge following their home defeat but their plans were swept away within the first two minutes.
After 82 seconds Tommy Hutchison pushed a neat pass through the middle of the visitors' defence and, although Alan Ainscow was unable to control the ball, Micky Burns did so and swept Blackpool into the lead from 10 yards.
Almost straight from the restart Blackpool doubled their advantage when Hutchison found an unmarked Ainscow who rifled the ball past a helpless Anzolin.
The third after 15 minutes when Bentley sent in a cross that Alan Suddick headed in neatly from close range. On 31 minutes a Hutchison corner was swept on and Glyn James prodded home and at half-time a shell-shocked Italian side trailed 4-0.
Four minutes into the second half and Stanzial sliced a shot by Burns into his own net before Burns scored twice more within a couple of minutes.
After 58 minutes he took a pass from Suddick and shot home from 25 yards and on the hour a shot from Ainscow was only partially cleared to him and he promptly fired the ball back into the net to complete a hat-trick and make it 7-0.
The Lanerossi defence was bemused, as was goalkeeper Anzolin for, without any apparent prompting, he left the field to be replaced by a surprised sub keeper, Bardin.
He fared no better ... he had been on the field only five minutes before Mick Hill, having an extended trial at Blackpool, volleyed home a centre from Hutchison.
Two minutes later and Hill, whom Blackpool did not subsequently sign, scored again when he headed home Hutchison's cross. Then on 71 minutes Burns stuck out a foot to push in a drive by substitute Steve Harrison to make it an incredible 10-0.
Fortunately for Lanerossi, Blackpool took their foot off the gas thereafter and just toyed with the Italians while not adding to their tally.
But it was still the record win in the competition and with the points for goals system, their 12 points was a record for any club in the three years of the Anglo-Italian tournament.
Blackpool proceeded to the final but unfortunately the story had an unhappy ending – they lost to AS Roma 3-1, Alcock scoring the Seasiders late consolation.
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