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Big read: Spain ‘82 – ‘I saw history made before my eyes that night’

Former Belfast Telegraph Sports Editor Jim Gracey interviews retired photographer Roy Smyth who was pitchside capturing iconic images of the match for this newspaper

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Gerry Armstrong scores his famous goal past Spain goalkeeper Luis Arconada

Gerry Armstrong scores his famous goal past Spain goalkeeper Luis Arconada

Former Belfast Telegraph staff photographer Roy Smyth who covered the Northern Ireland men’s national football team playing in the 1982 World Cup in Spain. Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX ©

Former Belfast Telegraph staff photographer Roy Smyth who covered the Northern Ireland men’s national football team playing in the 1982 World Cup in Spain. Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX ©

Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX

Norman Whiteside of Northern Ireland before the Yugoslavia match on June 17, 1982, in which he became the youngest ever player to play in a World Cup tournament (photo by Mark Leech/Offside/Getty Images).

Norman Whiteside of Northern Ireland before the Yugoslavia match on June 17, 1982, in which he became the youngest ever player to play in a World Cup tournament (photo by Mark Leech/Offside/Getty Images).

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Billy Hamilton is all smiles with Pat Jennings after Northern Ireland’s victory over Spain in Valencia

Billy Hamilton is all smiles with Pat Jennings after Northern Ireland’s victory over Spain in Valencia

Billy Hamilton celebrates his goal for Northern Ireland against Austria in the 1982 World Cup (Photo by Mark Leech/Getty Images)

Billy Hamilton celebrates his goal for Northern Ireland against Austria in the 1982 World Cup (Photo by Mark Leech/Getty Images)

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Billy Hamilton heads Northern Ireland's first goal against Austria in the 1982 World Cup (Photo by Mark Leech/Getty Images)

Billy Hamilton heads Northern Ireland's first goal against Austria in the 1982 World Cup (Photo by Mark Leech/Getty Images)

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Roy Smyth working at the 1982 World Cup in Spain

Roy Smyth working at the 1982 World Cup in Spain

Northern Ireland line up for what turned out to be that unforgettable victory over Spain at the 1982 World Cup

Northern Ireland line up for what turned out to be that unforgettable victory over Spain at the 1982 World Cup

Yugoslavia fans sing and play instruments in the stands during the World Cup match against Northern Ireland at the 1982 World Cup (Photo by Mark Leech/Getty Images)

Yugoslavia fans sing and play instruments in the stands during the World Cup match against Northern Ireland at the 1982 World Cup (Photo by Mark Leech/Getty Images)

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Billy Bingham and Gerry Armstrong in jubilant mood after Northern Ireland qualified for the 1982 World Cup (Photo by Belfast Telegraph)

Billy Bingham and Gerry Armstrong in jubilant mood after Northern Ireland qualified for the 1982 World Cup (Photo by Belfast Telegraph)

Team manager Billy Bingham at the Northern Ireland training camp in Spain during the 1982 World Cup (Picture by Roy Smyth for Belfast Telegraph)

Team manager Billy Bingham at the Northern Ireland training camp in Spain during the 1982 World Cup (Picture by Roy Smyth for Belfast Telegraph)

Roy Smyth (second from left) with Pat Jennings, Gerry Armstrong and Billy Bingham

Roy Smyth (second from left) with Pat Jennings, Gerry Armstrong and Billy Bingham

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Gerry Armstrong scores his famous goal past Spain goalkeeper Luis Arconada

Imagine, the glamour and reflected glory of covering the World Cup as a pitchside photographer.

The best view in the stadium, up close and personal with the action and the greatest players on the world stage.


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