Dennis Waterman: Day late Minder star pulled on Sheffield United shirt for Tony Currie tribute

Tributes are pouring in following the death of Minder, New Tricks and The Sweeney actor Dennis Waterman at the age of 74.

By Darren Burke
Sunday, 8th May 2022, 5:07 pm

The date was October 5, 1986 when Waterman brought a star-studded cast to Bramall Lane for a game against the Blades’ 1971-72 promotion winning squad.

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Dennis Waterman led an all-star team in a testimonial game for Blades legend Tony Currie. (Photo Getty)

More than 27,000 fans packed into Bramall Lane to see a Showbiz XI led by Waterman, with special guests including George Best, Frank Worthington and The Housemartins and Beautiful South star Paul Heaton, a lifelong United supporter, turning out on the day.

Speaking about the game in an interview several years ago, Currie said: “Such a lot had happened to me since leaving the city 10 years earlier and I couldn’t have dared hope for such support after being away for so long.”

“But the fans did me proud at a time when I was most in need of a break, an uplift in my spirits. Sheffield United has been my life.”

Def Leppard frontman Joe Elliott also took part in the match, with the all-star team sporting the Blades’ yellow away kit worn during the mid 1980s.

Remembering the game, where he played alongside George Best he said: “I played in the same team in September 1986 and he passed to me and I passed back so I like to tell everyone that.

“It was a Dennis Waterman XI and that’s why I knew I could get in. I rang a guy I knew and said if it is a celebrity team and I’m from Sheffield I want to play.

It is not Waterman's only link with the city.

Popular with stars including Steve Coogan, Dame Maggie Smith and Kenneth Branagh, the Norfolk Street eatery, has also welcomed a string of snooker players over the years.