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Thursday, May 27, 1999 Published at 12:18 GMT 13:18 UK


On stage - waiting for goals

Richard Wilson: Couldn't stop thinking about the match

"Unbelievably exciting!" said actor Richard Wilson of Manchester United's last minute victory in the European Cup final.

Best known for playing the character of grumpy Victor Meldrew, from the BBC comedy One Foot In the Grave, Wilson is also a staunch Manchester United fan.

United's treble triumph
But the actor, who often travels with the team, could not go to the Barcelona final because he was due to star on stage at Manchester's Royal Exchange Theatre in the play Waiting For Godot.

"I came off at the interval to find out we were one-nil down and saw 10 minutes live on television of the second half. Then went back on stage and have to admit that I did think about it rather a lot.

Richard Wilson: Caught 10 minutes of the football match in the interval
"At the curtain call James Duke, who plays Lucky, came on and smiled at me, so I thought possibly, possibly, and then I heard the news... and champagne flowed."

Wilson watched the match afterwards and said he found it thrilling even though he knew the score.

"In fact it was very exciting waiting for those last two minutes," he said.

Naked breakfast

All over the country Manchester United's fans are celebrating their team's latest victory and its unique footballing treble - the European Cup, Premiership and the FA Cup.

But not everyone is overjoyed - the victory left one of the presenters on Midlands radio station BBC WM rather red-faced.

Paul Franks said last year that Manchester United were so unlikely to win the European Cup, if they did he would present his show naked on the top of the BBC's Pebble Mill studios in Birmingham.

So on Thursday's Breakfast Show, Franks took to the roof, and presented the final half hour in just his tartan boxer shorts.

The 6ft 5in broadcaster said: "This has got to be the most embarrassing moment of my career. I apologise now to my wife and family."

"I wish I had never opened my big mouth."

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