Them and us – Andy Mutch (Wolverhampton Wanderers and Wigan Athletic)

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Sundays trip to the Midlands to take on Wolverhampton Wanderers brings an opportunity to feature one of Latics’ lesser lights who was however a burning beacon at Molineux.  Introducing, Andy Mutch…

… Andy, who was born on 28th December 1963, was a trainee at both Liverpool and Everton but he failed to make the grade at either club and started his career at Southport as a part timer for whom he made 105+10 appearances, scoring fifty goals in the process.  He was employed  as a refrigeration engineer at the time but it is doubtful whether any refrigerator would have been cooler in front of goal!

He was snapped up by Wolverhampton Wanderers in February 1986 but he could do little as the famous gold shirts suffered relegation to the bottom tier of English football for the first time in their history, ironically it was Latics who effectively sealed their doom with a 5-3 victory against Wolves on the last game of the season in front of 4,009 fans at Springfield Park.

From then on though the player and the club went from strength, ably assisted by a certain Steve Bull, but Andy’s contribution to the Wolves cause was far from minimal despite Bull sweeping all before him over the next three seasons.

The 1986/87 campaign saw Wolves lose out on promotion back to the English third tier despite the arrival of Bull in November of that season.  They were beaten by Aldershot in the divisional play offs.

But the following 1987/88 campaign saw Mutch and Bull notch up an amazing 53 goals between them and they stormed to the Fourth Division championship.  They followed this up by notching 58 league goals the following season which helped the club finish the 1988/89 season as Third Division champions!

He stayed at Molineux for a further five seasons, notching a goal in a 2-0 Sherpa Vans Trophy Final win against Burnley at Wembley in May 1988 along the way.

He represented England at B international level with appearances against Switzerland, Norway and Iceland within twelve months.  The closest he came to a full international cap though was a single appearance for the England Under 21’s.

In total he made 325+13 league and cup appearances for Wolves netting 105 times before being signed by John Gorman for Swindon Town, who had clinched promotion to the Premiership, in the summer of 1993.  Finally achieving his ambition of top flight footbal, despite coming very close to it at Molineux.l

He arrived at Springfield Park on loan from Swindon Town in August 1995. He made his Latics League debut on 26th August 1995 against Preston North End at Deepdale. The game resulted in a 1-1 draw and it was Andy who scored for the Blues.  In total he made 7 League appearances for Latics and scored 1 League goal before returning to the County Ground on 24th September 1995.

He remained at the County Ground until April 1996, making 50 appearances and netting 6 times before a move to Stockport County in April 1996.  Manager Dave Jones, aided and abetted by Andy,  guided County to the semi finals of the League Cup and County were also promoted to Division One that season!  After amassing 64 appearances and a further 10 goals he left Edgely Park in the summer of 1998, joining Barrow.

He left Holker Street to make just a further substitutes appearance for his former club Southport before embarking on a managerial career that took in Hednesford, (assistant), Morecambe, (assistant), Telford United, Vauxhall Motors and Burscough.

He was last heard of running a window supplies business in Southport and he also had a spell as the chief scout at Doncaster Rovers.

Steve Bull?  He is a Wolverhampton Wanderers vice president and has a stand at the ground named after him!

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