Gods footballer, all along the Watchtower
DATE: 21.06.2016 - SOCCERVOICE - NEWS - SEASON 2016-17
Very few or none
really quits football at the highest level, if they are able to play
on and are in demand
We have all heard of George Best and Diego Maradona, who quit and
came back, but they never really lost the love of football and
carried on at many levels until they reached their late 30's.
We all knew the problems of these two former greats and their way of
life, but few stops playing just because they get other ideas in
their head and change their belief and thoughts.
One who did, was former Wolves forward Peter Knowles. A well known
story for those who are coming to a certain age and followed the
game in the 60's and 70's. His football became less important after
joining The Jehova's Witness Movement.
Instead of scoring goals and playing great passes, he decided to
spread the word all along the Watchtower, and go all in for
something few believed could not be combined with a life in football.
Knowles who stayed on playing for a while after joining the movement,
said that he would use more time on understanding the bible, and his
interest for football bacme less and less until he decided to quit
He was one of the best young players in the
english game when deciding to quit. Knowles had made his England
U.23 debut and could have been included in the 1970 World Cup, but
instead quit the game at the age of 24.
His brother Cyril Knowles was a year older and played for
Middlesbrough and Tottenham. Cyril, a defender, played until 1976
and became an English international, playing four times for his
country at full level.
Wolves decided to keep his contract alive, and kept him on their
books until 1982, when manager Graham Hawkins decided that it was
time to "say goodbye" to the 36 year old Knowles, who hadn't played
since his last appearance v. Nottingham Forest in the fall of 1969.
By this Knowles became a "myth" and what if and all that will for
always be, because his decission to quit the game, came as a
bombshell just before the World Cup and in a period of time when
Wolves became a force in English football again.
During the early 70's Wolves reached the final of the UEFA Cup in
1972 and in 1974 won the EFL Cup. A young player came up and took
Knowles place and by many described as his successor a youngster at
the time, named John Richards.
Richards went on to play for Wolves for the next 10 years or so,
with Knowles still retired, getting that one England cap that never
Knowles experienced and in a way maybe this was "Gods will" so the
Peter Knowles returned to play for Wolves, as far as we know, once,
for Kenny Hibbit's testimonial game in 1980. The game was played
against Midland rivals, Leicester City, and Knowles showed that he
still had the touch of the ball that had been "lost" for so long.
In modern top European football, few or no players at this level and
talent has made such a decission. To quit top level football for the
course of this type of service, few understand, but the player
himself has later said that he never had any regrets.
Knowles quit the game and instead worked as a milkman, a window
cleaner and at Marks & Spencer. He believed that living the life he
decided to do made him a better person and one living longer,
because he retirement from football.
A book about Peter Knowles, described as a biography, was released
in 2009, written by auther and Wolves fan Steve Gordos. Knowles
himself had nothing to do with the book and was reluctant to it, and
had no role in it, so why it was released who knows, maybe because
it had a public interest and is a great part of the club
Wolverhampton Wanderers history.
The book is on sale and you can buy it from our store,
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