As a youngster, Ron Greenwood used to spend endless hours playing and watching football on Worsthorne ‘rec’.

As he played, the field was one day his Wembley and Turf Moor the next – despite the howling wind and occasional cow pat.

What made Ron Greenwood different was that his dreams came true – for he was manager of the England national football team from 1977 to 1982.

It was a long way from the days when he was mascot for the Worsthorne Manufacturing Company football team.

Ron was born in Worsthorne in 1921 and though the family left to find work during the depression of the 1930s, he never forgot his roots.

He told the Lancashire Evening Telegraph, back in 1980, from his desk at FA headquarters in Lancaster Gate: “I remember my young days well; it’s most important that you remember your roots.”

Money was tight for the Greenwood family in Worsthorne and his mum and dad could not even run to a proper ball for their football-mad son.

“We used to kick a pig’s bladder about the village,” said the man who spent most of his spare time on the rec.

“When there was a match, I used to stand behind the goals and run after the ball when it went out of play. I was football crazy and I think that must have been the reason why the mill made me the mascot of their team.

“I remember them winning the Hospital Cup and the celebration trip we had to Blackpool.”

He added: “I was 10 when we left the village but I clearly remember that I used to do boxing training in the old slaughterhouse at the back of the Bay Horse.”

As he reminisced in 1980, another well known footballing name was, in fact, mine host at that particular village pub – one Andy Lochhead.

And they weren’t the only footballers connected to the village at the time, for Burnley manager Brian Miller lived there, as did his youth team coach and former Claret Arthur Bellamy.

Ex-Burnley skipper Peter Noble lived across the road from Turf Moor favourite Brian Flynn, while free-scoring centre forward Willie Irvine lived round the corner from his old team mate Lochhead.

Willie was captain of the domino team at the Bay Horse and Brian played pool for the pub.