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1999: Winning debut for England’s Guppy

This week in Leicester City sees us partying like it’s 1999

Steve Guppy
One cap wonder Steve Guppy

We here at Fosse Posse love to bring you the latest news and opinions on our great football club, which we all love, Leicester City. But we also like to reminisce and look through blue tinted glasses at how our team have come through the last 133 years.

We’ll delve way back and highlight the likes of Arthur Chandler, Frankie Wortho and others, as well as Cup Finals, landmark achievements and moments that have just filled us with joy (and sometimes despair)!

Sunday 10th October 1999

International Friendly

England 2 Belgium 1

With Euro 2000 play-off qualification ensured, it was time for Kevin Keegan’s England team to entertain co-hosts Belgium in a friendly at the Stadium of Light in Sunderland.

He decided it was time to experiment, and playing with 3 centre backs as well as giving debuts to Frank Lampard and Leicester City’s very own Steve Guppy.

This was just reward for Guppy, who with this cap, was set to be the only footballer to have played for England, England B, England C and the England under 21's.

He settled straight into the match and was involved in the opening goal as well as other the debutant, Lampard.

Guppy’s corner found Tony Adams at the back post who headed down to Lampard, his mishit shot into the ground bounced up invitingly for Shearer, who smashed an overhead kick home on 6 minutes.

It could have been two, just minutes later when Paul Ince flashed a 25-yard effort wide.

England however didn’t take hold of the game and were pegged back, when Gilles De Bilde low centre was turned into an unguarded net by Branko Strupar on 14 minutes.

Belgium now we’re confident, and Oyen almost scored a second before Lampard had England’s best chance to regain the lead before half-time but his lob was blocked by the keeper.

Guppy and his England team-mates were given the flying teacups treatments as Keegan "went ballistic at half time" in hope of a better performance in the second half.

Steve however was doing a good job on the left trying to provide openings for Shearer and Phillips, but it was the introduction of Owen for Phillips which gave England the edge.

With England moving forward better now and in the 66th minute, Jamie Redknapp managed to strike a 30 yard shot in off the underside of the crossbar to restore the lead.

Owen continued to keep the Belgium’s on the back foot and a couple more subs we recognised at Leicester came on late on in the game, with Dennis Wise coming on, but there were to be no further goals as substitute Emile Heskey hit the post after intercepting a back pass.

Keegan “did he not like that!”
Photo by Mark Sandten/Bongarts/Getty Images

Keegan paid tribute to debutant Guppy for his work on the left side, but wasn’t happy with the team

"Okay, we changed the system but basic things like passing the ball, getting round people, weren't being done," he said of the first half.

"We got at them in the second half, made chances, but I'm never going to be pleased with a performance like that."

However this would be Guppy’s one and only cap for England, despite impressing Keegan, but England’s loss was Leicester gain as he went on to continue do what he does best for us by hugging that left wing touchline and bamboozling Premiership fullbacks.