I was told a story on Thursday about Everton, by a Welshman. More specifically a story about my favourite Welshman and the greatest goalkeeper (and moustache wearer) in the history of the known universe, Big Nev. The setting of the story is a barbeque at a swanky house in the swankiest part of Llandudno. When he said swanky and Llandudno in the same sentence I assume he meant the bit where all the houses have inside toilets.
The story teller was a guest at said barbeque and was listening to his host repeating in a variety of ways, the fact that his neighbour was Neville Southall. Not only that, you could see Big Nev's driveway from the garden in which they stood by looking over the low-level surrounding fence and down the road to the house behind.
The view that the host was so proud of did not provide much excitement to begin with. Big Nev's Land Rover was nowhere to be seen. This may have had something to do with it being a Saturday afternoon in August, in the late eighties.
As many barbeques do when the weather permits, this one carried on into the early evening. People were having a drink, enjoying the odd sausage barm and generally having a swanky time. All of a sudden the simmering chatter of good times and jollity was chopped in half by the noise of a Land Rover screeching down the road behind the house.
As the driver door opened and quickly slammed shut the party fell silent. A number of guests peered over the fence to investigate the noise but the host quickly recognised the source of the racket.
"Alright Neville, how's it going?"
Big Nev glared up at the host red faced and filled with hate. He bellowed back what should really have been expected given the nature of his arrival.
"Will you just fuck off!"
Big Nev stormed into his house, slamming the front door behind him. The host turned to the open-mouthed faces of his party and simply exclaimed, "They must have lost then" before continuing to tend to the collection of meat on his grill.
As well as this tale, this Welshman also gave me a few little bonus facts about Big Nev. I'll let you decide how true they are:
- 1. Ol' Sir Whiskey Nose wanted to sign him for Manure before he bought Schmiechel. This move not coming off was a disappointment to Nev's Dad who was (or is. I don't want to talk about him in the past tense if he's still alive!) a massive Welsh Manc.
- 2. One of Big Nev's brothers used to play Sunday League with the story teller and was nicknamed 'Boo'. This was because he is built like "A brick shit house" and would only need to say boo to you to make you instantly soil yourself.
- 3. When Big Nev first signed for Everton he couldn't drive so used to cycle to training. He didn't want the rest of the team to know so he would hide his bike around the corner from Bellefield.