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Much-loved West Brom left-backs join toast to lost friends

By Matt Wilson | West Bromwich Albion | Published:

A contingent of Baggies fans travelled over to Spain to honour two much-loved left-backs and two lost friends.

Neil Clement and his cap

Six years ago, well-known Albion fan Richie Brentnall tragically lost his life following an accident near his home on the Costa Del Sol.

Every FA Cup final weekend since, a group of Baggies fans have travelled to Fuengirola to raise a few glasses in his memory.

Three years ago they were joined by FA Cup winner Graham Lovett, known as ‘Shuv’, who sadly passed away last May.

This year they were joined by legendary left-back Derek Statham, before meeting promotion hero Neil Clement and handing him his Albion cap.

Dean Walton, who helped organise the trip, explained: “The attendance for this year’s memorial weekend was the biggest yet; 22 of us were joined by Albion legend Derek Statham who travelled from his Spanish home in Duqueso.

“Derek met us at midday in our traditional starting point the Tahiti Bar, where we raised a toast to Richie and ‘Shuv’.

“A great Saturday was then had by all ­– once again we did our departed friends proud.

“On Sunday we ventured along the coast to La Cala where we caught up with another former Albion left-back Neil Clement.

“‘Clem’ has resided in Spain for a few years now and the group presented his Albion appearance cap to him on behalf of the club.

“Derek and Neil were both glad to be remembered by the fans and had very fond memories of their time at The Hawthorns.”

Matt Wilson

By Matt Wilson
Football MMPJ - @mattwilson_star

Sports reporter at the Express & Star, who primarily covers West Bromwich Albion.

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