The Day We Stunned The League
Tuesday, 29th Aug 2017 07:30 by Planet Swans (follow us on Twitter @swansnews)
When Leeds United arrived at the Vetch on 29th August 1981, I don't think there was anybody who expected the result that we achieved but 36 years on we look back on that famous opening day win for the Swans.
Promotion to the top flight had been secured for the first time in our history almost four months earlier and a crowd of more than 23,000 were expected at the Vetch to watch our first game at this level.
It had been a remarkable rise with three promotions in four seasons under John Toshack and the Swans support eagerly awaited one of the more famous sides of that era.
The famous Swans line up: Dai Davies, Neil Robinson, Dzemal Hadziabdic, Ante Rajkovic, Colin Irwin, John Mahoney, Alan Curtis, Robbie James, Leighton James, Jeremy Charles, Bob Latchford
Jeremy Charles got the ball rolling after five minutes as he directed Alan Curtis' cross from the left flank past keeper John Lukic but this was equalised out twenty minutes later by a diving header from Derek Parlane.
A half time score of 1-1 did not give any indication of what was about to happen as new striker Bob Latchford took just ten minutes of the second half to notch a hat-trick and start the party in South Wales for real
His powerful half-volley gave Lukic no chance as he put the Swans ahead with his first goal for the club and then just minutes later he tucked home Neil Robinson's low cross from the right.
And a remarkable debut was topped off with a hat-trick for the England striker as he rose highest to meet Leighton James' pinpoint cross to head into the far corner of the net.
Swans legend Alan Curtis had spent a spell at Leeds earlier in his career and it was almost written in the stars as he scored one of the most iconic goals of the Swans history having picked the ball up from Ante Rajkovic and cut inside from the flank before his famous swerve saw him back on his right foot and send a thunderous effort into the top corner.
It set an interesting tone for the season ahead with the Swans always in title contention until around April having never been outside the top six - our final finishing position.
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