Thirty years on from Liverpool’s magnificent treble we catch up with a man who won a European Cup winners' medal in the 1984 final v AS Roma without kicking a ball.

Bob Bolder was Bruce Grobbelaar's understudy and in an exclusive chat with the stopper, he tells us why he will always proudly cherish his European Cup winners' medal.

Grobbelaar was an ever present as Liverpool's last line of defence for an astonishing period between 1981 and 1986 and was a model of consistency as trophies galore continued to arrive into the Anfield trophy cabinet.

When Dover born stopper Bolder arrived from Sheffield Wednesday he was well aware of the size of his task to displace the Kop favourite.

Such was the popularity of custodians like Grobbelaar, Ray Clemence and before them Tommy Lawrence and Elisha Scott, Liverpool's telegraphic address in 1983-84 was 'Goalkeeper Liverpool'.

Reserve team regulars in those days will fondly recall Bolder as a fine goalkeeper who was just unlucky he never got a chance to play a first team game at Anfield.

Bolder played in a Central League team consisting of the likes of Phil Thompson, Gary Gillespie, Paul Jewell, Jim Beglin and a young promising teenager in future Merseyside legend Gary Ablett.

As well as winning the treble, the reserve team under the command of Anfield hero Chris Lawler beat Manchester United to win their respective title.

He still plays for Liverpool Legends in charity matches to this day, and despite the fact he didn't notch up a single appearance in a Liverpool shirt, that doesn't deter what fantastic memories he has from his time at Anfield.

We caught up with Bolder to reminisce on a truly unforgettable 1983-84 season:

Bob, the 1983-84 season must bring back some great memories for you - what was it like being a part of that great squad?

It only seems like yesterday to be honest and we had such a great time. It was my first season at Liverpool and it was my first experience in the big time as it were after spending six-and-a-half years at Sheffield Wednesday. It was a brilliant time to be a Liverpool player and it was fantastic winning three trophies.

For you unfortunately Bruce never got injured at the time so what was it like being his understudy?

It was frustrating but Bruce was fantastic and I've got the highest regard for him. He was a fantastic goalkeeper, he was the rubber man with such great agility. He never got injured and he was such a good athlete. He used to swing off the crossbars in training and for the two seasons I was at the club he was fantastic. There was never going to be a chance for me to get in when you looked at who Bruce had in front of him, with a back four Alan Hansen, Mark Lawrenson, Phil Neal and Alan Kennedy - legends, every single one of them and they were that good and consistent. To be fair Bruce knew I wanted his position and I did push him hard but that also worked well for him as he improved his consistency. You don't win a treble without having a good goalkeeper so all the credit to Bruce.

Not many players can say they have got a European Cup winner's medal but you can...

I'm incredibly proud of that and we had a great bunch of lads at Liverpool. The away trips in Europe were always great and I was on the bench for every one of the games leading up to the final in Rome. You felt part of it and I know watching from the bench is never the same as playing but we were all such good mates and wanted each other to do well. We were a close knit team and we were in it together. One of the best memories I have is when we were in the tunnel before kick-off and Alan Kennedy and the lads were singing the Chris Rea song 'I Don't Know What It Is But I Love It!' The Roma players didn't know what to do and in my eyes they were beaten in the tunnel. Those were great days. Winning it was just fantastic and even today when I'm working with the kids at Charlton Athletic I still take my medal in to show them. It always pops into the conversation every now and again and if one or two people get above themselves I will bring out my European Cup medal! [laughs] It's nice for me to have that as not many people can say they have that.

Back then it was a case of Liverpool winning everything and the reserves also winning the title. We had some good players in that reserve side didn't we which could have probably held its own in the football league...

We had a great team. Thommo didn't play in the first team that season so he captained the reserve side and he was absolutely fantastic and a real inspiration to the young lads coming through. He was a great leader and his enthusiasm was just fantastic. We had some great players who of course went on to have some really good careers, so it just shows you how hard it was at the time to get into the first team.

How do you look back at your time then at Liverpool?

It was a fantastic experience for me. It was hard at first because I had been used to playing in the first team at Sheffield Wednesday. Probably the hardest thing at first was the mental side of the game and getting used to the Liverpool way of doing things which was totally different to what it was at Wednesday. We never did any specific goalkeeping training and we played a lot of five-a-side games. Brucie played outfield and he used to take people on and score goals! That was the way Liverpool played and everyone had to be good with their feet, and for me as a goalkeeper it certainly improved my touch when it came to kicking the ball and improving my distribution. Playing wise it was frustrating but I have to say Liverpool was the best club I was ever involved in and it was a privilege to have been a small part of it. I have got a lot of feeling for the place.

Tell us what you have been up to since leaving Liverpool?

I went with Barney, Alan Kennedy to Sunderland but for some reason the manager at the time Lawrie McMenemy didn't take to me and I was out of the door by February. I then had a spell with Luton before I signed for Charlton Athletic in the summer of 1986. I retired in 1994 and since then I have been involved working with Charlton helping coaching the kids under the Charlton Athletic Community Trust. Charlton have been really good to me and it's a fantastic family club. I also do hospitality on match days and it's really good to be involved.

You still appear from time to time with your old Anfield teammates playing in legends games don't you...

We haven't played for a while but it's always great whenever we get back together. We all take the mickey out of each other and it's great banter. It's great to be a part of and we all get on really well together.


Click here to read Clive Tyldesley's memories on the top LFC secret he had to keep.