In 1978 America beckoned and along with a lot of the senior pro’s at the time it seemed like a good idea to explore this new frontier. The North American Soccer League were looking for “Names” and the likes of Rodney Marsh, Alan Ball, George Best, Pele, Johann Cruyff , Franz Bechenbauer and myself jumped at the chance. Lawrie McMenemy had offered me a two year contract at Southampton but the challenge excited me and so bags packed I crossed the Atlantic for a new adventure.
To say it was an experience would be an understatement! It was fun but more Hollywood and Big Top stuff than football!
I remember before a game against Fort Lauderdale I was warming up with Alan Ball (who was making a guest appearance) and we began to wonder where the opposition was.. We found out a couple of minutes later when a Wagon Train with full complement of Horses and Red Indians came galloping into the stadium! This included the opposition who were wearing cowboy hats and firing guns into the air. I looked at Bally and didn’t say a word. After nine months I’d had enough.