It’s a tale (or should that be tail?) that has left Newcastle United fans of a certain generation wondering for years.
Back when Kevin Keegan guided Newcastle into the Premier League for the first time in 1993 the Magpies boss rewarded his players with trip to Cyprus to celebrate.
It was supposed to be a team bonding exercise but there was only one question on the lips of fans when the team returned: Who was responsible for chopping off Brian ‘Killer’ Kicline’s famous ponytail?
Kilcline’s famous locks were a feature of Newcastle’s promotion season 23 years ago, but the team photo for the 1993/94 season featured Kilcline with a much shorter haircut.
For those who haven’t heard this story before ‘Killer’ woke up on the bar at the team’s hotel only to discover that his ponytail had been chopped off and stuffed into a wine glass.
Now 23 years later, the publication of Lee Clark’s stunning new book, has provided some fresh insight.
In his book - entitled Black or White, No Grey Areas - Clark revealed: “It was almost like a Biblical scene from Samson or the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, where the evil White Witch had cut off Aslan’s mane.
“Killer’s hair was his pride and joy. It was clear he was sleeping off the intoxicating effects of an afternoon session because nobody would’ve dared to do it while he was sober.”
For years many had suspected it was either Lee Clark, Alan Thompson or Steve Watson. But the trio aren’t guilty and Clark said: “The three of us knew we weren’t guilty but somehow the lads had convinced us we’d done it.
“I was a mischievous lad, who played pranks, but then so did the rest of the team.
“I was generally in amongst the high jinks and tomfoolery when it was going on but not this time. We returned and protested our innocence.”
Clark has not revealed who was responsible and stated that Barry Venison, Paul Bracewell, Scott Sellars, Derek Fazackerly, John Murray and former United head coach John Carver could be named and shamed in Kilcline’s forthcoming book.
Clark said: “Venison, Bracewell, Sellars, Fazackerley, Youth Development Officer, John Murray and John Carver were all in the firing line.
“To say he was upset is an understatement. It all kicked off! Tommy Wright and O’Brien jumped in to try and calm him down because Killer went absolutely berserk!
“He was knocking people out left, right and centre. It was like a Popeye cartoon! It was pure carnage!
“The same happened to those who knocked on his bedroom door and tried to protest their innocence. A few were seen scuttling down the corridor on their arses!
“But the lads who did it took their medicine and realised they’d taken the joke too far. They must have, foolishly, drunk several pints of Dutch courage!
“Killer knew it wasn’t us. He saw how upset and worried we were about it. Who were the guilty culprits?
“One or two of those named above. I’ll let Killer name and shame them in his book. Killergate aside, Keegan assembled a magnificent spirit.”