Bert Trautmann won the FA cup with a broken Neck
On this day, May 5, in 1956, Manchester City defeated Birmingham City 3-1 to win the FA Cup at London’s Wembley stadium before a crowd of over 100,000. Many considered the game a remarkable one, considering the fact that the Man City goalkeeper at that time, Bert Trautmann (pictured, center), played the last seventeen minutes with a broken neck.
Manchester City pressured the Birmingham goal from the opening kick-off, resulting in a third-minute strike from forward Joe Hayes that gave them a 1-0 lead. Birmingham quickly equalised, however, when a 15th-minute shot ricocheted off a Man City defender to wrong-foot Trautmann, then landed in the path of forward Noel Kinsey, who slotted it home.
The two sides were evenly matched to the hour mark, when Man City took advantage of Birmingham’s defensive lapses to score two quick goals from forwards Bobby Johnstone (62′) and Jack Dyson (64′). Birmingham attacked the Man City goal with renewed fervor when, in the 73rd minute, forward Peter Murphy collided with Trautmann. Murphy’s knee rammed into Trautmann’s neck, knocking the keeper unconscious.
The rules at the time did not alow for substitutes, so after Trautmann recovered, he insisted on staying on the pitch as Manchester City complete the 3-1 win. Three days later, Trautmann’s neck still hurt, so he went to a doctor who confirmed that he had dislodged five vertebrae, one of which was broken in two. Trautmann became a folk hero at Manchester City, for whom he played until 1964, making over 500 appearances.
Source: This Day In Football History
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