I’m an Arsenal and Sky Sports legend and people still call me by my nickname – even when it’s completely inappropriate

ARSENAL legend Charlie Nicholas has revealed that people still call him “Champagne Charlie”, 40 years after the nickname was coined.

Former Scotland striker Nicholas, 61, scored 54 goals in 184 games for the Gunners over five years in north London in the 1980s.

Charlie Nicholas was often known by his nickname “Champagne Charlie.”


Charlie Nicholas was often known by his nickname “Champagne Charlie.”Photo credit: Getty
After his playing career, he worked as a Sky Sports pundit for 20 years


After his playing career, he worked as a Sky Sports pundit for 20 yearsPhoto credit: PA

He joined after winning two Scottish Premiership titles with Celtic.

And during his time at The Hoops he was nicknamed “Champagne Charlie”.

After scoring his 30th goal of the season in the 1982/83 season – in which he ended up with 48 goals – he was greeted in the dressing room with two Moet & Chandon cheer boxes.

Manager Billy McNeill was quick to point out that they actually applied to the entire dressing room – not just Nicholas.

The striker, who only ended up with one bottle, went on to explain that he didn’t even like champagne… but the name somehow stuck.

Speak with The posthe said: “A cheap hit, a throwaway line that became an image.”

“I never liked champagne. I couldn’t afford it when I started at Celtic on £30 a week and spent a tenth of that on my budget. Try living on 20 pounds a week on champagne. That’s not feasible.”

“I took this bottle home for my mother and father. They didn’t like her either. It sat in the closet gathering dust for years.”


Nicholas also played for clubs such as Celtic and Aberdeen


Nicholas also played for clubs such as Celtic and AberdeenPhoto credit: News Group Newspapers Ltd

Nicholas, who now admits to being a fan of champagne, later played for Arsenal and Aberdeen before a second spell at Celtic.

He retired in 1996 after a season with Clyde and then spent 20 years as a pundit on Sky Sports’ Soccer Saturday alongside the likes of Jeff Stelling, Paul Merson, Phil Thompson and Matt Le Tissier.

But the nickname “Champagne Charlie” continued to be instilled in him decades after his time at Celtic.

He added: “You’d be amazed at how many people in England come up to me and say, ‘All right, Champagne, how are you?’ And they don’t know me as a footballer. You know me from TV.

“The guys at Soccer AM always thought I was still Champagne Charlie while the girls were chasing me. They loved it.”

“I would say, ‘No, wait, I’m in my 60s’.”

Nicholas’ only trophy at Arsenal was a League Cup, awarded in 1987.

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Unfortunately for the Scot, the Gunners won the First Division in the first season after his departure in 1989.

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ClareFora is a Dailynationtoday U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. ClareFora joined Dailynationtoday in 2021 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing: clarefora@dailynationtoday.com.

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