You played for Wolverhampton Wanderers for over 13 years and scored more than 300 goals. Are you surprised that a top division club didn’t come in for you, given that you never reached the top tier with Wolves?
No. I always say you never know what’s round the corner and I was very lucky with injuries. To play for 13 years without injury was good enough.
But Steve, according to your Wikipedia page, Real Madrid, Barcelona, Ajax, PSG, Internazionale, Manchester United, Liverpool, Rangers, Lazio, Boca Juniors, Juventus and Genoa all tried to buy you. Did no one tell you?
No. Actually I didn’t know about all them. I knew Torino and Newcastle, and Celtic and Coventry. But only those four.
Would you have fancied it though? Maybe just a season at Madrid, one at Barcelona one at Inter, then back to the Championship with Wolves?
If I’d been money-orientated maybe. But I just love the Black Country, love the people, love the town, love the stadium.
You got your break playing non-league football for Tipton Town. At the time you also had various part-time jobs. Which was the worst?
Mucking the pigs out at my mate’s farm to get me fit in pre-season.
That was fitness training?
Yeah, to build my upper body fitness. It was a hard job. And a smelly one too.
Was there any point, maybe when you were mucking the pigs out, that you leant on your shovel and thought you might not make it?
Yes. When I was 17 I had a piece of bone taken out of my knee. This surgeon told me I wouldn’t make it as a professional footballer. I was back playing six weeks later.
Lets hopes that surgeon is reading this now. In your face, surgeon! You came on for Garth Crooks on your senior debut for West Brom. Did he give you any advice and, if so, did it involve him talking and talking for ages?
No he didn’t. He was very quiet back then. He had a good partnership with Imre Varadi up front and that was why I left West Brom. I just thought, I’m not going to play here. It was a knockback. But I went on to Wolves and gave it a go.
And now you have a stand named after you. Do you think Molineux has the best statues?
Yeah they have. The Billy Wright one at the front is superb. But they haven’t got the best one yet. They haven’t got one of me.
Are you annoyed there is no Bull statue, maybe a large bronze likeness?
No, no, I’m just kidding. Anyway, you only get one when you’re dead and I’m not going anywhere just yet.
You scored 52 goals in the fourth division in the 1987-88 season. You were playing for England a year later. Was that a shock?
It was unbelievable. You’re playing in the third division, everyone’s telling you you haven’t got a first touch then the next minute you’re playing for your country It’s not going to happen again, ever. Playing with the likes of Lineker, Shilton, Waddle, Gascoigne, Beardsley. I thought: blimey, I’ve come a long way here.
Were you surprised how good they were?
I was to be honest. Coming from the lower leagues, you don’t know where to run, you might not have the touch, and when I blended in with them at training I really enjoyed it, I was getting to the same tempo they were.
You scored against Scotland on debut after controlling the ball with your back. Was that a move you’d practiced?
No it wasn’t. I remember I jumped with Alex McLeish, we tangled, it hit me on the shoulder and I just hit the ball as hard as I could. Me being stupid I’ve started running towards the Scottish fans. I’ve fallen to my knees and I’ve got Gascoigne and Bryan Robson on top of me. I couldn’t believe it.
The young Gazza. Was he as good as all that?
He was the best player I’ve ever been on the pitch with. On his day he was absolutely superb. Great touch, great vision.
You went to Italia 90. Was there a revolt before the Holland game?
No, there wasn’t. We were there for six weeks and I can’t remember one argument. Whatever Bobby Robson said we went out there and did it. We should have won that World Cup.
Should Peter Shilton have saved Andy Brehme’s free-kick?
I don’t think anybody could have saved that.
Maybe a man who could jump could have saved it?
Yeah, but it’s one of those things. Everybody picks up on one mistake but he made saves in other games and you have to look at what he did for that team.
If you were holding a dream dinner party whom would you invite?
Muhammad Ali, Robbie Williams And maybe Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Two beefcakes then. How about some eye candy?
The wife has got to be there, to be fair. And, er, probably Catherine Zeta Jones.
You had a long-running feud with Steve Walsh. How did it start?
We used to just wind each other up a bit. He was centre-half at Leicester, I was at Wolves, we were always going to be up against each other. We used to joke in the tunnel about whose turn it was to get sent off.
Now you’re friends. Is that right?
Oh yeah, we do golf days and everything He’s a top man.
Are you really friends or do you secretly resent him?
No no, he’s a top man, no grudges there, nothing at all, We’ll have a beer together any day.
Honestly. The two of you. Who would win a fight?
I don’t know. I think it’d call it a draw. I think we’d be like two bull terriers going to the end. Best to shake hands and walk away.
Who would win a fight between a ladybird and a moth?
That’s a silly question. They aren’t going to fight. But I’d say the ladybird. It’s got a weight advantage.
Do you have a favourite newsreader?
Erm, I’d say probably Bob Warman from Central TV.
If the world was ending would you like it to be him relaying the bad news?
Probably yes. He’s thorough and very good.
Now you’re in a Wolverhampton Balti house You can have three dishes. What are they going to be?
Tandoori chicken to start. Cheesy naan bread. And a chicken and prawn Balti or and some chips!
What do you do with the heated towel at the end of the meal. Face or hands?
I’d say wipe the face first, then the hands.