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On This Day: 1970

PUBLISHED

11:00 28th February 2013

A debut for 'King John'

February 28 1970 saw a debut for one of the most prolific strikers in Wolves history.
Lancashire-born John Richards moved to the club as a 18-year-old striker in 1969, signing professional forms under then manager, Bill McGarry.
The first game of a long and highly successful Wolves career came at the home of the club's fiercest rivals, West Bromwich Albion, the following year.
That top division clash ended 3-3, and - although Richards had to wait over six months for his first Wolves goal - heralded the start of a spell that would turn 'King John' into a fans' favourite and the club's then record goalscorer.
His prolific strike rate contributed to a successful period in the club's history during the early 1970s, with Richards' highest seasonal tally coming in 1972/1973, when he netted 36 times. He finished as the club's top scorer in seven of the next eight seasons - forming a strong partnership with Derek Dougan.
He was part of the team that contested the first all-British European final, as Wolves lost out to Tottenham in the UEFA Cup of 1972, and also went on to achieve domestic success.
His was the late winning goal which secured Wolves' first major silverware in almost 15 years against Manchester City at Wembley in 1974 - the first of two League Cup-winning teams that Richards was part of.
The 194 goals that the Lancastrian scored in his 485 Wolves games was the highest total in the club's history, until Steve Bull surpassed that mark in the early 1990s.
Richards was capped once for England during his time at Wolves - his solitary international appearance coming against Northern Ireland in 1973 - and he left the club after fourteen years in 1983.
Richards remains the second highest scorer in the club's history, and his goalscoring exploits saw him inducted into the Wolves Hall of Fame in 2010. 

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