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Players: Tributes:
Ross Jenkins
Another world
By Ian Grant

Ross flaming Jenkins, eh? One of the greatest servants Watford Football Club has ever had. No ifs, no buts, look over his Watford career and you'll see he was as important in our rise to the top flight as anyone.

My memories of our only appearance at Wembley are hazy but I can't help wishing that, on the day when our rise reached its peak, Jenkins and Blissett had been there to take a share of the acclaim. Jenkins had been given a free transfer, Blissett was in Milan - they were replaced by Mo Johnston and George Reilly, two lesser mortals. Somehow that doesn't seem quite fair.

Ross Jenkins was a heroic footballer. Overcoming a dreadful start to his Watford career, he was ultimately to embody the spirit and pride that Graham Taylor brought to the club. His partnership with Luther Blissett was legendary - the mere mention of either name is enough to make any Watford supporter go all misty-eyed. It was magical and it brought unparalleled success to a dead-end club.

I apologise if I can't bring to mind specific details of Ross. I was only a kid at the time. Those with longer memories might like to have a go at doing him justice. What I can tell you is that when I was at school, everyone wanted to be Jenkins or Blissett in the playground kickabout. Flicking through his testimonial booklet, looking at photos of Ross in aerial combat, it's impossible not to yearn for someone similar now. Sadly, I doubt we'll ever see his like again. That Watford number nine shirt, currently occupied by Tommy Mooney of all people, will only ever be on loan from Ross Jenkins.

On the way back from Vicarage Road, I still walk past his old house. Seems like another world....