Joe wins Everton award

IPSWICH boss Joe Royle has been honoured by his former club Everton.Royle, named as the Merseyside club's Giant of 2004, was back at Portman Road this morning after a night of nostalgia at Goodison Park.

IPSWICH boss Joe Royle has been honoured by his former club Everton.

Royle, named as the Merseyside club's Giant of 2004, was back at Portman Road this morning after a night of nostalgia at Goodison Park.

It was appropriate that the presentation took place at half-time during last night's long-awaited win over Manchester United.

It was the first time the Toffees had beaten their Old Trafford rivals in 21 meetings. The last time was when Royle's team triumphed against the Reds at Wembley in the FA Cup Final ten years ago.


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Earlier in the 1994-95 season Everton beat United 1-0 with a Duncan Ferguson goal - and they staged an action replay last night to remain favourites to clinch a Champions League place next term.

Royle won the League Championship with Everton in 1970 and the skipper of that side, former England defender Brian Labone, presented him with his award.

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Apart from receiving a tumultuous reception from the Goodison crowd, Royle was also seen by millions of Sky Sports viewers as he enjoyed his special moment.

He said: “When I see the list of players and managers already in this Giants list I feel very humble, yet very proud, to be a part of it.

“To go back out on to the pitch and get such a warm reception from the Evertonians was terrific and will live with me for a long time.

“I always love coming back here. Once Everton gets into your blood it's there to stay.”

Royle remains the youngest-ever player to make a full debut for the club, starting ahead of fans' favourite Alex Young at Blackpool in 1966 when still only 16.

He scored 23 goals in the Championship-winning 1969-70 season and the Everton website admitted many fans still see Royle as the best post-war forward to wear the famous blue shirt.

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