Alan Hodgkinson

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Alan Hodgkinson
Personal information
Date of birth (1936-08-16) 16 August 1936 (age 77)
Place of birth Laughton Common, England
Height 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Playing position Goalkeeper
Youth career
Worksop Town
1953-1954 Sheffield United
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1954–1971 Sheffield United 576 (0)
National team
1957–1960 England 5 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Alan Hodgkinson MBE (born 16 August 1936 in Laughton Common, England) is a former footballer who played in the position of goalkeeper. At just over 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m), Hodgkinson was on the small side for a goalkeeper, but made up for the lack of height by his good positional play.[citation needed]

Football career[edit]

Hodgkinson signed for Sheffield United from Worksop Town on 1 August 1953, and made 675 first-team appearances (576 in the league) for the Blades between 1953 and 1971, his first being a friendly game against Clyde on 6 April 1954.

Hodgkinson made his league début in Division One in a 2–1 away victory against Newcastle United on 28 August 1954 but, despite showing his undoubted potential, the presence of number one goalkeeper Ted Burgin until 1957 and National Service limited his opportunities for the first team. The arrival of Joe Mercer as manager established Hodgkinson's place as first-choice goalkeeper in the side behind the defensive line of Cec Coldwell, Graham Shaw, Brian Richardson, Joe Shaw and Gerry Summers. In 1966–67, he won the Sheffield United Supporters player of the year award. His brilliance and reliability made sure of his place until the signing of John Hope in 1971. His final appearance was, like his first, in a friendly, on 23 January 1971 against Chesterfield.

Hodgkinson was also an England International at full and under-23 levels, making his debut for both during the 1956–57 season. His first full England cap came against Scotland in 1957 and he also played against Denmark, and Republic of Ireland (twice in World Cup qualifying games). He was in England's squad for the 1958 World Cup in Sweden but did not feature in any of their games. Two years after his final cap, he returned to the England squad for the 1962 World Cup in Chile as backup to Ron Springett, but once again was not selected for any of the matches.

Coaching career[edit]

Hodgkinson moved on to professional coaching and has since worked at numerous clubs, including Rangers, Everton, Manchester City, Aston Villa, Leicester City, Sheffield Wednesday, Gillingham, Oldham Athletic, and Birmingham City, and is credited with bringing Peter Schmeichel to Manchester United.[1] Hodgkinson worked at United for seven years before becoming Scotland national team goalkeeping coach where he tutored players such as Jim Leighton and Neil Sullivan and coaches Alex Penny and Steve McVeigh. He also had a spell as a youth goalkeeping coach at Rangers and Watford. After a spell with Coventry City, Hodgkinson moved to Rushden & Diamonds and worked with goalkeeper Billy Turley, who then later joined Hodgkinson when he moved to Oxford United. Turley left Oxford in 2010 but Hodgkinson remained to coach first-team keeper Ryan Clarke and later also Max Crocombe. Hodgkinson's retirement from football, at the age of 76, was announced in August 2012.[1]

Managing career[edit]

Hodgkinson spent six years as assistant manager of Gillingham between 1975 and 1981, working as assistant to Gerry Summers, with whom he played at Sheffield United.

He was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2008 New Year Honours.[2]

Between The Sticks[edit]

After retiring, Hodgkinson wrote an autobiography entitled Alan Hodgkinson Between The Sticks, which was released on 9 May 2013.

Sheffield United career[edit]

Season Division League Apps FA Cup Apps FL Cup Apps Other Apps Total Apps
1954–55 One 11 0 0 0 11
1955–56 One 4 0 0 0 4
1956–57 Two 17 3 0 0 20
1957–58 Two 36 4 0 2 42
1958–59 Two 42 6 0 2 50
1959–60 Two 39 4 0 3 46
1960–61 Two 41 7 1 0 49
1961–62 One 40 6 7 0 53
1962–63 One 40 3 1 0 44
1963–64 One 35 3 1 0 39
1964–65 One 40 3 1 2 46
1965–66 One 41 2 1 1 45
1966–67 One 42 4 5 3 54
1967–68 One 41 3 1 0 45
1968–69 Two 42 1 1 3 47
1969–70 Two 41 2 3 2 48
1970–71 Two 24 1 2 4 31
Total 576 52 24 23 675

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Oxford United coach Alan Hodgkinson retires". BBC Sport. 30 August 2012. Retrieved 31 August 2012. 
  2. ^ Liptrott, Alan (29 December 2007). "Former Gills Assistant Manager recognised in Queen's New Year Honours List". GillsConnect. Retrieved 2 January 2008. [dead link]