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Northern Ireland legend Gerry Armstrong planning special reunion for boys of 1982 World Cup


Gerry Armstrong with Billy Bingham after the win over Spain in 1982

Gerry Armstrong with Billy Bingham after the win over Spain in 1982

Gerry Armstrong with Billy Bingham after the win over Spain in 1982

Northern Ireland legend Gerry Armstrong has put the wheels in motion for a special night of celebration on June 25 this year – 40 years on from that unforgettable victory over host nation Spain at the 1982 World Cup.

Armstrong slammed in the winner in Valencia to leave manager Billy Bingham, his players and the Green and White Army in dreamland.

Northern Ireland had Mal Donaghy sent off but held on for a famous 1-0 win.

It was one of the greatest moments in Northern Ireland sporting history and an incredible triumph against the odds by a team packed with talent, spirit and character.

The Watford striker’s ninth international goal sent Northern Ireland through to the latter stages of the competition and ensured legendary status for the squad, including the man from west Belfast.

Some of the players are no longer with us but Armstrong is keen to reunite as many as the gang he can to rekindle golden memories.

The 68-year-old, who went on to play for Real Mallorca after the 1982 finals, is also hoping sponsors come onboard for the trip down memory lane.

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“We are planning the reunion on June 25 and we are looking for more sponsors,” says Armstrong.

“I want to get as many of the players over to mark the 40th anniversary of the win over Spain.

“We had a party on the 25th anniversary but everyone is getting older, some have passed away and some are perhaps not in great health.

“But we hope to have a special night at the Europa Hotel with up to 400 guests. Some players have been diagnosed with dementia and we would like to raise money and have an auction.

“Hopefully, other sporting celebrities can come along. The 1982 victory is the biggest football date in our calendar and the country was brought together. People still fondly talk about the ‘Spirit of 82’, we topped our qualification group and went on to beat the host nation, one of the tournament favourites, at the finals.”

For those interested in sponsorship they can email

Meanwhile, Northern Ireland goalkeeper Trevor Carson has joined St Mirren from Scottish Premiership rivals Dundee United for an undisclosed fee.

The 34-year-old, who has agreed a two-year deal, worked with St Mirren manager Stephen Robinson at Motherwell and Morecambe, where he spent time on loan earlier this year.

* Coleraine midfielder Jamie Glackin has extended his contract for another three years.

Glentoran and Larne were linked with the former Crusaders ace but he agreed a Bannsiders deal until June 2025.

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