Memorable Monty moments

by Kate Smith

To mark his 70th birthday looks back on Monty's career.

February 1964
The goalkeeper turned in an epic display at Old Trafford against Manchester United in the sixth round of the FA Cup. Sunderland were leading 3-1 and dominated the game before Montgomery took a blow and was knocked out. Ever the hero Monty carried on between the sticks but unfortunately for the Lads, United pulled two goals back, forcing a replay at Roker Park.

September 1966
Following England’s World Cup win, history was being made elsewhere as SAFC goalkeeper Jimmy Montgomery pulled on his boots to play in an outfield role. The stopper starred in Norman Clarke’s testimonial game against a Charlton XI at Roker Park. Monty played the second half of the Northern Ireland international’s benefit game at outside left and went on to score two goals in the game!

January 1973

Long before the final, Monty was already making a name for himself in the opening game of the 1973 FA Cup run. Sunderland were pitted against Notts County and after drawing at Meadow Lane, Sunderland ran out 2-1 winners at Roker Park thanks to goals from Dave Watson and Dennis Tueart, however, it was heroics from Monty on County’s star striker Les Bradd that kept Sunderland in the competition.

April 1973
When Sunderland made it to the FA Cup semi-final to face Arsenal, Monty was at it again. He produced a stunning first half save to deny George Armstrong. The deflected ball looked goal bound but the keeper’s cat-like reflexes saw him spin around to get to the ball and deny Armstrong,  spurring Sunderland on to a 2-1 victory in front of a 55,000 crowd at Hillsbrough, courtesy of a goal apiece from Vic Halom and Billy Hughes.

May 1973
The moment that will long outshine any other Monty moment is of course his double-save from the 1973 FA Cup Final at Wembley. Underdogs Sunderland were pitted against Leeds United and had shocked everyone by taking the lead through an Ian Porterfield strike in the 31st minute.

Midway through the second half Trevor Cherry dove forward with powerful header that was splendidly saved by Montgomery to keep Bob Stokoe’s Sunderland in front, but the ball rolled out to the chasing Peter Lorimer who fired fiercely from close-range for the stopper to instinctively dive across his goal and push the ball up onto the crossbar for defender Dick Malone to boot clear.