Join us in the Banqueting Suite at Edgbaston for a major football dinner on Thursday 26th November featuring three of the game’s great characters from the last twenty years.
We are thrilled to welcome former the former Premiership football star, and co-host of Sky Soccer AM, Jimmy Bullard, the former Southampton, Spurs, Liverpool and West Ham hardman, the fearsome Neil ‘Razor’ Ruddock and the former Arsenal and England star and Sky Sports pundit, Paul Merson. Our guests will be dishing the dirt on the game as some of football’s most memorable characters, with our Sky Sports host for the evening, Pete Graves.
Jimmy Bullard: A skilful midfielder, Jimmy played youth football at West Ham United before heading to Peterborough United for two seasons. He then moved to Wigan Athletic where he scored ten goals in 145 league appearances, helping them to their first promotion to the Premier League. He enjoyed shorter spells in the top-flight with a further 62 appearances at Fulham and Hull City, where he was Player of the Month in 2009, before a move to Ipswich Town as injuries began to take their toll. Finishing his career with 342 League appearances and 47 goals, Bullard was renowned for being a passionate leader on the pitch and for his funny antics and pranks, playing football with a smile throughout his career. Paul Jewell described Bullard as the “heart and soul of the dressing room”. Since retiring from playing he has made many TV appearances including Celebrity Juice, Match of the Day, I’m a Celebrity, Goals on Sunday and is now the regular co-host of popular Sky Sports programme, Soccer AM.
Neil ‘Razor’ Ruddock: A fearsome competitor on the pitch who pushed the boundaries of physical intimidation, ‘Razor’ Ruddock was a striker’s nightmare as a tough-tackling centre back with confidence on the ball and an eye for a pass and a goal. In a 17-year career played almost entirely in the top flight, Neil played for Millwall, Spurs, Southampton, Liverpool and West Ham, winning the League Cup whilst at Anfield in 1995. His colourful career was littered with memorable on-field altercations with other hardmen of the day including the likes of Eric Cantona and perhaps most famously, Patrick Vieira in 1999. With 466 appearances in all competitions with an impressive goal ratio of one every ten games, Neil won his only cap for England under Terry Venables, against Nigeria in 1994. Since retiring in 2003 he has appeared in I’m a Celebrity, Celebrity Big Brother and even showed his skills in the kitchen, finishing an impressive third in Celebrity Masterchef last year, as well as hilarious antics on ITV’s Harry’s Heroes with Harry Redknapp.
Paul Merson: After making his Arsenal debut in 1986, Paul soon established himself in the first team; he was a regular on the right wing in the unforgettable 1988-89 season, when Michael Thomas scored with almost the last kick of the season at Anfield to bring the title back to Highbury. During that legendary season, Paul scored 10 goals from the wing, broke into the England U21 side, and was named the PFA Young Player of the Season. He went on to have a long and glorious career with The Gunners, making 423 appearances and scoring 99 goals in all competitions; he won another League title in 1991, as well as the FA and League Cups in 1993, and the Cup Winners’ Cup in 1994. His first senior England cap came in 1991, and although he wasn’t always a regular, he went on to win 21 caps for his country, scoring 3 goals. On leaving Arsenal, he enjoyed further successful spells with Middlesbrough, Aston Villa and Portsmouth, before finishing his 20 year League career off at Walsall, finally retiring in 2006. One of the game’s most colourful characters, with a wild streak off the pitch, Paul is now one of the most highly-rated speakers on the circuit and a regular pundit on Sky Sports.
Pete Graves: A passionate Newcastle Utd fan, Pete has enjoyed a swift rise through the broadcasting ranks to become one of the most recognisable faces on Sky Sports. After leaving university, Pete started his broadcasting career with the hospital radio show Radio Tyneside, before working in the local Metro Radio, and then ITV Tyneside as a sports reporter. Since 2009 he has worked at Sky Sports, mainly as a presenter, where his passion for football and all-round sports knowledge are amongst his greatest assets. Pete has become a much-valued member of our team at our many lunch and dinner events and we are delighted to be in his safe hands once more!
Edgbaston Stadium: We are delighted to be holding our event in the Banqueting Suite at Edgbaston Stadium, which is a fantastic large facility, perfectly suited to our event. This is the stadium’s premium pitch-facing facility, enjoying magnificent views over the middle, and plenty of natural light. Our guests will enjoy quality dining and service for which Edgbaston is rightly renowned, with ample complimentary parking for all attendees.