The Makita Trophy saw a couple of English and a couple of Italian teams meet in soporific matches at Wembley to get their pre-season signings injured in time for the season proper.
It always ended up being Arsenal against Sampdoria. There was no point to this, and they put a stop to it.
However, the spectre of the four-team ‘pre-season tournament’ continues to loom every couple of years. A spokesman for Umbro, who sponsored one in 2005, said: ‘we think this is a great opportunity for fans to warm up for the season, and we’re not discouraged by the fact that everyone alive hates this sort of shit.’