Football Connections

There were 11 different experimental Pre-Series covers produced during the 1970-71 season.   Each cover was produced in small numbers and all sold out very quickly.  For the 1971 FA Cup Final, two different cover versions were produced.  One with a 2d stamp, to reflect Arsenal's score (PS11) and one with a 1p stamp to reflect Liverpool's score (PS11A).

PS11 - 1971 FA Cup Final - 2d stamp
PS11A - 1971 FA Cup Final - 1d stamp

When Arsenal met Liverpool at Anfield on 26th May 1989, their away win secured them the League Championship.  Even though a cover had been planned to commemorate the match in the Historical series (ref 3H17), it was the same day that a special handstamp was being used to celebrate Sir Matt Busby's 80th birthday.

3H17 - Arsenal become 1989 League Champions

Because of Arsenal's achievement and Sir Matt's links to Liverpool - he was a former player with the club - it was decided that something should be produced to link the two themes.  There was no time to produce a new design, but there was some unused stock that could be used.

 

A handful of unused Pre-Series covers were found and were overprinted with the result and sent for handstamping (ref PS11B) - these are much scarcer than the original pre-series covers shown above.

PS11C - Arsenal become 1989 League Champions

Also, a number of unused Arsenal European Cup covers from 1971 (ref V101C)  and a batch of Arsenal 1989 Champion covers (ref 1401A) were given the same treatment - the latter being used in advance of their planned release date.

V101C - Arsenal become 1989 League Champions
1401A - Arsenal become 1989 League Champions

A Manchester United cover had been scheduled to mark Sir Matt's birthday.  Three versions were issued: one batch with a 19p Scottish definitive stamp(1328), one with a high value football stamp (V1328) and a small batch of 360, signed by Sir Matt, which have a 14p Scottish definitive stamp and label (S1328A).

1328 - Basic cover celebrating Sir Matt Busby's 80th birthday
V1328 - Sir Matt Busby's 80th birthday with 34p football stamp
S1328A - Signed by Sir Matt Busby - Scottish regional stamp with label
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