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Laurie Cunningham remembered

PIONEER: Laurie Cunningham

FOOTBALL PIONEER Laurie Cunningham is to be the subject of an upcoming movie made by award-winning playwright Kwame Kwei-Armah.

The film on Cunningham, the first black player to represent England in a competitive international is in the making and will be produced by Fulwell 73. The film is currently called Black Flash.

The movie will also feature Gavin & Stacey star, James Corden in the role of Ron Atkinson, the man who was West Bromwich Albion’s boss at the time Cunningham played for the Midlands team. Cunningham died in a car crash in Madrid, in 1989, at just 33.

What he did on the pitch, and the changes he helped bring about off it, left a lasting impact on the English game.
Rejected by Arsenal, he began his professional career at Leyton Orient in 1974 and within five years he became the first Englishman to play for Real Madrid.

His amazing journey from Brisbane Road to the Bernabeu went via West Brom, where the winger became the first black player capped by England at any level and, along with defender Brendan Batson and striker Cyrille Regis, formed the legendary 'Three Degrees' partnership.

Under manager Ron Atkinson, the trio - nicknamed after the American soul group - inspired the Baggies to one of the greatest eras in their history.

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