Division Two - May 21st 1963
1962/63 saw us back in the Second Division for the first time in 33 years. After an indifferent start Tommy Docherty’s young team started a long unbeaten run that included a club record of 10 wins and one draw in 11 games. Boxing Day’s win at Luton saw us six points clear at the top of the table.
Then the country suffered the worst winter in memory. We didn’t play a league game again until February 9 and by then the momentum built up in the autumn had disappeared. Five wins in 15 games including five straight defeats culminated in a home loss to leaders Stoke in front of 66,000 fans that looked to have put an end to our chances of promotion.
But a week later a freak Tommy Harmer goal, his only for the club, saw us win a hard fought often brutal game at second placed Sunderland who had now finished their fixtures.
Three days later we hosted Portsmouth knowing that a win would take us back to the First Division. An expectant crowd of 54,000 packed to Stamford Bridge but any nerves were settled by Derek Kevan’s second-minute goal. Like Harmer, this was to be the former England centre-forward’s only goal for the club.
After that, Portsmouth collapsed and further goals from Frank Blunstone, a Terry Venables penalty and four from Bobby Tambling, taking his total to 37 for the season, saw us home 7-0 and promoted on goal average, by 0.401 of a goal.