Roy of the - The Official Roy of the Rovers Website




Roy gets married!

Roy becomes a father!

Roy has marriage trouble!

Roy gets shot!

Sir Alf Ramsey becomes caretaker manager!

Geoff Boycott is appointed Chairman!

Roy signs on the Spandau Ballet stars!

Roy to be England Manager?

Roy makes a stand on hooliganism!

Roy makes the press abroad!








Welcome to 'Back Page Rovers'. The objective of this page is to report on how Roy of the Rovers has and still makes the headlines after over 50 years in the public eye. This page refers to current reports and past media coverage. If you are aware of any references for either of the above categories, please e-mail - it will be greatly appreciated.

For the latest 'Back Page News', just follow the links below. Roy has been the focus of numerous newspaper articles, reports on TV and radio. In 1981 when Penny walked out on him, Roy's personal agent 'Barrie Tomlinson appeared on BBC TV's Nationwide with presenter Sue Lawley. In 1982 when Roy had been shot there was a special outside broadcast from the Melchester Rovers ground by Capital Radio. ATV's Sports Today even ran its own competition to suggest a replacement Manager for Roy!

Press Cuttings

Over the years Roy of the Rovers has often made the headlines. So much so, that courtesy of former editor Barrie Tomlinson, there are now separate pages available to view for the cuttings from various British and International newspapers. Please see the links to the left.

Sleeford United

In January 1975,  non league Sleeford Town knocked out the mighty Melchester Rovers from the FA Cup. The score was 2-1 with Mervyn Wallace scoring for the Rovers. This famous win is celebrated by the Newark Advertiser who cover the matches of Sleaford Town. The link below takes you to the coverage by the Newark Advertiser.

Newark Advertiser

Top 100 People of the Century to Shape the Game of Football

In the January 2000 issue of the Match of the Day Magazine, Jonathan Wilson compiled a dossier of 100 men, women (and a dog no less!) who had shaped the game, for better or worse in the 20th Century.

Good old Roy was 52nd, beating people such as Terry Venables (72nd), Geoff Hurst (66th) and Ferenc Puskas (65th). However, it is a little worrying when Eric Hall (football agent - 45th) and Mark Robins (40th) beat Roy. Rupert Murdoch was first for his Sky Football coverage, Pele was 2nd and Lord Justice Taylor 3rd. The write up for Roy is reproduced in the extract below. The picture of Roy is taken off the Playing Years Book and was drawn by Mike White. 

To read the full extract from the magazine, just follow the link below.

Melchester Rovers

Melchester Rovers appeared on BBC1 on Saturday 27th November 1999. It was not Rocky, Declan and Co., but a team of enthusiastic amateurs who go under the famous name. The programme they appeared on was called "Things Can Only Get Better", which was presented by Nick Hancock with Match of the Day's Mark Lawrenson providing critical analysis. This Melchester Rovers Team had been in existence for 13 years and had never won anything (except the John Barney Rudge Fair play trophy!") They had not even been promoted. Nick Hancock described their team name as being appropriate because "They are comic characters living in a fantasy world; average age 30, average weight 14 stone!"

However, the 'Things Can Only Get Better' team had three weeks to turn Melchester into a team of world beaters with the help of the Army, a sports dietician, team development specialists and professional football coaches from West Bromwich Albion. A great deal was achieved and even though they lost the featured game, they went on in true 'Roy of the Rovers' style, the following week to win their first league game of the season 5-0! Up the Rovers!

They Think It's All Over

1999 saw the return of the Roy Race cardboard cut-out as it featured on an episode of "They think its all Over!", as part of the guess the sportsman round. Obviously Roy's mate Gary Lineker guessed it very quickly! Fun was also poked at Gary when Nick Hancock revealed the front cover of the comic when Gary's Hot-Shot comic joined forces with Roy of the Rovers and the cover featured Gary and Roy shaking hands.

The Final Whistle - News at Ten

They think it's all over was the phrase on the back of the last ever Roy of the Rovers weekly comic on the 20th March 1993 edition. Trevor McDonald also reported the closure of the comic on "News at Ten!"

The Frank Skinner Show

Former Melchester player Martin Kemp appeared as one of the guests on the Frank Skinner show. Frank made a great deal of Martin's time with the Rovers and referred to extracts from the comic. Martin said he thoroughly enjoyed his time with Roy and co., and during his contract with them, he couldn't wait for each week's comic to drop through the letterbox. Apparently Martin's son has kept all the copies. Frank had even had the strip adapted for the show to mirror Martin's role as Steve Owen in Eastenders. The rewritten story referred to Martin hitting Roy over the head with an ashtray and burying Roy in Epping Forest!

Martin Kemp on the Frank Skinner show.


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All the images and references from any Roy of the Rovers publication used in this web site are © Egmont UK Ltd. All other material unless otherwise stated is © Mark Towers. The pages in this web site are best viewed with I. E. 3 or Netscape 3 or above and an 800 x 600 screen resolution. The site was designed and is maintained by Mark Towers.