Not quite the humble surroundings Hughie McIlmoyle familiarised himself with during the 1960s, but returning to Molineux on Tuesday evening brought back fond memories for the former centre forward.
The Scot was back in Wolverhampton as a half-time guest during the mid-week draw with Bristol City, after spending three successful seasons at Wolves 50 years back.
Now 77, McIlmoyle took to the pitch to discuss his return but admitted to being taken back by the modern surroundings – quite different to when he was plying his trade in gold and black.
“It was the first time I’d been back in a long time and the stadium looked fantastic,” he told wolves.co.uk. “I couldn’t believe it. It was nothing like that in the ‘60s and ‘70s.
“It brings back good memories, although when you get older the memories start to shrink.”
McIlmoyle netted 45 goals in 104 appearances for Wolves, following a move from his beloved Carlisle United in 1964, and he believes the Molineux faithful saw some of the best football of his career.
“I scored on quite a regular basis for Wolves which was nice. It was a good, friendly club but money didn’t come into it because most football players were on £20 per week.
“Most of my former clubs are much the same, very good clubs. If you’re winning more games, you’re going to have more friends.
“It was a big club and it was good to play for them. Everyone was very friendly and they still are now, everyone at Molineux wants to talk to you and I enjoyed going back.”
Wolves were one of seven English clubs McIlmoyle turned out for and, although Carlisle is where he’s fondly know and has a statue in his name, the former striker holds Wolves in high regard.
“I’m based in Carlisle, but about 10 yards from Scotland. I go down to Brunton Park weekly to polish the boots on my statue.
“I played for seven clubs here and I keep an eye on each one. I loved it at Wolves because it was a fantastic club. I made some really good friends, not just footballers, but neighbours as well,” he added.
Hughie was a guest of the club in the WV1 restaurant which will welcome former players and managers to chat to fans this season. So far Jody Craddock, Dave Jones and Paul Butler have all been among the special guests.