Martin Peters

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Martin Peters
Martin Peters.jpg
Personal information
Full name Martin Stanford Peters
Date of birth (1943-11-08) 8 November 1943 (age 71)
Place of birth Plaistow, Essex, England
Height 6 ft 0.5 in (1.84 m)
Playing position Midfielder
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1959–1970 West Ham United 302 (81)
1970–1975 Tottenham Hotspur 189 (46)
1975–1980 Norwich City 206 (44)
1980–1981 Sheffield United 24 (3)
1982–1983 Gorleston
Total 721 (174)
National team
1966–1974 England 67 (20)
Teams managed
1981 Sheffield United
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Martin Stanford Peters, MBE (born 8 November 1943) is a former football player and manager and a member of the England team which won the 1966 World Cup as well as playing in the 1970 FIFA World Cup.[1] Born in Plaistow, Essex) he played club football for West Ham United, Tottenham Hotspur, Norwich City and Sheffield United. He briefly managed Sheffield United before retiring from professional football in 1981.

Known as "the complete midfielder" as he could pass the ball well with either foot, was good in the air and difficult to mark because of his movement.[2] A free kick specialist, Peters was described by England manager Sir Alf Ramsey, after a game against Scotland in 1968, as being "ten years ahead of his time".[3] His versatility was such that while he was at West Ham he played in every position in the team, including goalkeeper in his third game, replacing an injured Brian Rhodes.[4] [2] With his transfer from West Ham United to Tottenham Hotspur in 1970, he became Britain's first £200,000 footballer.[5]

Club career[edit]

West Ham United[edit]

Under manager Ted Fenton,[6] Peters came through the productive ranks at West Ham United after signing as an apprentice in 1959. He made his debut on Good Friday 1962 in a 4–1 home win against Cardiff City. He scored his first goal for West Ham in a 6–1 away win at Manchester City on 8 September 1962.[7]

Peters played only five games in his first season with West Ham and although he played 32 league games in season 1963–4 he played no part in their FA Cup run and was not selected for the FA Cup final of 1964 at Wembley, in which West Ham beat Preston North End 3–2.[8] The following year, however, he established himself as a first team regular and was victorious at Wembley when West Ham won the European Cup Winners Cup with victory over 1860 Munich.[9] He was usually partnered in midfield by Eddie Bovington and Ronnie Boyce.[7]

Peters began to impose himself on West Ham's game, and another chance for silverware came in 1966 when West Ham reached the League Cup final. The occasion was still a two-legged affair with each of the finallists hosting a leg (though this changed to a one-off final at Wembley a year later), and Peters played in both matches. He scored in the second game but opponents West Bromwich Albion emerged as 5–3 winners on aggregate.[10] [11] [12] The 1968–69 season saw Peters only hat-trick for West Ham in a 4–0 home defeat of West Bromwich Albion.[13] It was also his most prolific season, 24 goals coming from 48 games.[7]

Tottenham Hotspur[edit]

Feeling he was in the shadows of Bobby Moore and Geoff Hurst, Peters sought out a new challenge. In March 1970, West Ham received a record-breaking £200,000 (£150,000 cash) for Peters from Tottenham Hotspur and Peters moved to White Hart Lane, with Spurs and England striker Jimmy Greaves (valued at £50,000) going the other way.[5] On 21 March 1970 Peters scored on his Spurs debut against Coventry City.[5] He won his first domestic winners' medal in 1971 when Spurs beat Aston Villa 2–0 in the League Cup final.[5] Spurs beat Wolverhampton Wanderers 3–2 on aggregate to win the 1972 UEFA Cup in what remained the only all-English European final until Manchester United beat Chelsea in the UEFA Champion's League Final, 2008.[5] In 1973, Peters won the League Cup again with Spurs. He completed one more season with Spurs – losing the 1974 UEFA Cup final to Feyenoord on aggregate[14] – before moving to Norwich City – managed by his former West Ham team-mate John Bond – in March 1975 for £50,000.[15]

Norwich City[edit]

Peters, now aged 31, made his debut appearance for Norwich on 15 March 1975 in a 1–1 away draw to Manchester United.[15] He helped newly promoted Norwich establish themselves in the First Division, making more than 200 appearances, and earning a testimonial against an all-star team which included most of the 1966 World Cup winning England XI. He was voted Norwich City player of the year two years running, in 1976 and 1977, and in 2002 was made an inaugural member of the Norwich City F.C. Hall of Fame.[16] In 1978, whilst still a Norwich City player, Peters was awarded an MBE for services to association football.[17]

Sheffield United[edit]

He joined Sheffield United on 31 July 1980 as player-coach with the intention of replacing Harry Haslam as manager. His first appearance came in a 2–1 victory against Hull City on 2 August 1980 in the Anglo-Scottish Cup and his League debut came in the opening match of the season in a Division Three fixture against Carlisle United. He scored once in a 3–0 victory.

International career[edit]

Peters (left) as part of The Champions statue, Newham, London

Alf Ramsey had seen Peters' potential quickly, and in May 1966 he gave the young midfielder his debut for England against Yugoslavia at Wembley.[18] England won 2–0 and Peters had an outstanding debut. Nearly scoring twice he set up chances for Jimmy Greaves and for others.[19] In the final preparation period for Ramsey prior to naming his squad for the World Cup, Peters played in two more of the scheduled warm-up games. Against Finland, he scored his first international goal in what was only his second appearance,[20] and subsequently he made Ramsey's squad for the competition, as did his West Ham team-mates Bobby Moore (the England captain) and Geoff Hurst.[21]

Though Peters did not play in the opening group game against Uruguay, the drab 0–0 draw prompted Ramsey into changes.[18] The England coach had been toying with using a system which allowed narrow play through the centre, not operating with conventional wingers but instead with fitter, centralised players who could show willing in defence as well as spread the ball and their runs in attack. Peters therefore had become an ideal player for this 4–1-3-2 system, elegant in his distribution and strong in his forward running, yet showing the stamina, discipline and pace to get back and help the defence when required. This system was dubbed "the wingless wonders".[22][23]

Ramsey put Peters in the team for his fourth cap, for the second group game against Mexico, which England won 2–0.[24] He kept his place as England got through their group, scraped past a violent Argentina side in the quarter finals (Peters' late cross set up Hurst's header for the only goal)[25] and beat Portugal in the last four.[26] The Germans awaited in the final.

A tense but open game at Wembley saw the score at 1–1 in the final quarter of an hour when England won a corner. Alan Ball delivered it to the edge of the area to Hurst, who tried a shot on the turn. The ball deflected high into the air and bounced down into the penalty area where Peters rifled home a half-volley.[27] The Germans equalised in the final seconds, though glory would still come the team's way with the 4–2 win in extra time, and Hurst – like Peters, winning only his eighth cap – completing a historic hat-trick.[28] Peters was now one of the first names on Ramsey's England teamsheet,[27] despite an indifferent spell for West Ham as a club and team. He was also a frequent scorer from midfield. In 1970, Peters, now a Tottenham Hotspur player, was picked for the 1970 World Cup in Mexico, for which England had qualified automatically as holders of the competition. By now Peters was an established international with 38 caps.

Peters played in England's three group games from which they qualified again with West Germany waiting in the last eight. Peters scored against the Germans again early in the second half – a run and finish from behind a defender which no West German player had spotted – to establish a 2–0 lead, but later Ramsey committed a tactical error by substituting Peters and Bobby Charlton with Colin Bell and Norman Hunter, and West Germany won 3–2 in extra-time.[29] [30]

In 1972, Peters won his 50th England cap in a qualifier for the 1972 European Championships, beating Switzerland 3–2.[30] England failed to progress due to another defeat against West Germany,[31] who went on to win the tournament. International disappointment for Peters was tempered mildly by more club success, and he scored the only goal as England beat Scotland at Wembley on 19 May 1973.[30] It was his 20th goal for his country and would prove to be his last. England had been stuttering in their qualifying campaign for the 1974 World Cup, dropping points in a drawn game against Wales and then a 2–0 defeat against Poland in Chorzów on 6 June 1973. [30] England needed to defeat Poland at Wembley on 17 October 1973 to qualify for the finals in Germany and, with an out-of-form Moore dropped from the side (he'd only play once more subsequently for his country) Peters captained the side for the crucial game. Against a dominant England, Polish goalkeeper Jan Tomaszewski contrived to keep out every single shot and header.[32] A defensive error allowed Poland to score and only a penalty allowed England to level up quickly. (Peters in his autobiography admitted that he had dived to win the penalty.) Allan Clarke scored from it, but England could not get the crucial winning goal. Poland went through after the match finished 1–1 meaning Peters would not play in a third successive World Cup competition. At the age of 30, Peters' career at the highest level began to slip away. He played three more games for England,[30] reaching a total of 67 caps, though his career with his country ended, on 18 May 1974, as England lost 2–0 defeat against Scotland at Hampden Park.[18]

Management career[edit]

His wait to become manager was not long, his final game coming against Gillingham on 17 January 1981 which Haslam was too ill to attend. Peters retired to take up the manager's job the following day with United 12th in the table with 16 games to play. Winning just three of the remaining games, United were relegated to the Fourth Division and Peters resigned.[33] On his retirement from professional football in January 1981, after a distinguished and injury-free career, he had made 882 appearances in total, scoring 220 goals. After Peters quit Sheffield United he spent the 1982–83 season playing in defence for Gorleston[34] in the Eastern Counties League.

After football[edit]

In 1984 he moved into the insurance business where he stayed until he was made redundant in July 2001.[35]

In 1998 Peters joined the board of directors at Spurs, and, although he since stepped down, he remains one of the match-day welcomers in the hospitality suites at the club's White Hart Lane ground. He has also worked in the hospitality suites at Upton Park for West Ham home matches, often attending with his children and grandchildren, all West Ham supporters.

In 2006, Peters published his autobiography, The Ghost of 66, to critical acclaim.[36]

Peters was inducted, with former manager Ron Greenwood, into the English Football Hall of Fame in 2006 in recognition for his achievements as a player.[37]

Personal life[edit]

Peters is married to Kathleen, his wife since 1964. They met three years earlier at a Dagenham bowling alley. They have a daughter Lee-Ann (born 1965) and a son Grant (born 1970). They also have two grandchildren. They now live in Shenfield, Essex.[38]

Career statistics[edit]

Club performance League Cup Total
Season Club League Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
England League FA Cup Total
1961–62 West Ham United First Division 5 0
1962–63 36 8
1963–64 32 3
1964–65 35 5
1965–66 40 11
1966–67 41 14
1967–68 40 14
1968–69 42 19
1969–70 31 7
1969–70 Tottenham Hotspur First Division 7 2
1970–71 42 9
1971–72 35 10
1972–73 41 15
1973–74 35 6
1974–75 29 4
1974–75 Norwich City Second Division 10 2
1975–76 First Division 42 10
1976–77 42 7
1977–78 34 7
1978–79 39 10
1979–80 40 8
1980–81 Sheffield United Third Division 24 4
Total England 724 175
Career total 724 175

Honours[edit]

West Ham United

Tottenham Hotspur

England

References[edit]

  1. ^ Martin PetersFIFA competition record
  2. ^ a b "Martin Peters". www.performingartistes.co.uk. Retrieved 22 September 2012. 
  3. ^ "Martin Peters: I can't see us ending 44 years of hurt". www.independent.co.uk. 21 March 2010. Retrieved 18 September 2012. 
  4. ^ Williamson, Laura (19 January 2009). "West Ham draw the line at losing another key player to Tottenham". www.dailymail.co.uk. Retrieved 18 September 2012. 
  5. ^ a b c d e "Martin Peters". www.sporting-heroes.net. Retrieved 18 September 2012. 
  6. ^ "Jimmy Andrews". www.telegraph.co.uk. 14 September 2012. Retrieved 23 September 2012. 
  7. ^ a b c "Welcome to the Wonderful World of West Ham United Statistics Martin Peter". www.westhamstats.info. Retrieved 18 September 2012. 
  8. ^ "FA Cup Final 1964 - Preston 2 West Ham 3". www.football-england.com. Retrieved 18 September 2012. 
  9. ^ "Martin Peters". www.thefa.com. Retrieved 19 September 2012. 
  10. ^ "On this day - 2 February". www.whufc.com. Retrieved 19 September 2012. 
  11. ^ "Game played on 09 Mar 1966". www.westhamstats.info. Retrieved 19 September 2012. 
  12. ^ "Game played on 23 Mar 1966". www.westhamstats.info. Retrieved 19 September 2012. 
  13. ^ "Game played 31 Aug 1968". www.westhamstats.info. Retrieved 19 September 2012. 
  14. ^ "1974 | (21/29-05-74) Feyenoord - Tottenham Hotspur 2-2/2-0 (Winnaar UEFA Cup)". www.youtube.com. Retrieved 19 September 2012. 
  15. ^ a b "Martin Peters". www.sporting-heroes.net. Retrieved 19 September 2012. 
  16. ^ "Flown from the nest - Martin Peters". www.ex-canaries.co.uk. Retrieved 19 September 2012. 
  17. ^ "Hammers Awarded and Managers". www.westhamstats.info. Retrieved 23 September 2012. 
  18. ^ a b c "Martin Peters". The FA.com. Retrieved 21 September 2012. 
  19. ^ "World Cup hero Martin Peters made his England debut on this day.". www.thefa.com. Retrieved 23 September 2012. 
  20. ^ "Martin Peters". www.englandcaps.co.uk. Retrieved 23 September 2012. 
  21. ^ Norrish, Mike (17 November 2008). "England v Germany all-time greats: where are they now?". www.telegraph.co.uk. Retrieved 23 September 2012. 
  22. ^ "Sir Alf Ramsey". www.dailyecho.co.uk. 20 June 2007. Retrieved 11 September 2013. 
  23. ^ "Ramsey. Alf". FIFA.com. Retrieved 11 September 2013. 
  24. ^ "International football MATCH report: 16.07.1966 England vs Mexico". www.eu-football.info. Retrieved 22 September 2012. 
  25. ^ "International football MATCH report: 23.07.1966 England vs Argentina". www.eu-football.info. Retrieved 22 September 2012. 
  26. ^ "International football MATCH report: 26.07.1966 England vs Portugal". www.eu-football.info. Retrieved 22 September 2012. 
  27. ^ a b Fraser, Alan (1 May 2010). "England legend Martin Peters remembers that golden day in 1966 and assesses the chances this time round in South Africa". www.dailymail.co.uk. Retrieved 23 September 2012. 
  28. ^ "World Cup 1966 - England beat Germany in Wembley final". BBC Sport. Retrieved 23 September 2012. 
  29. ^ "International football MATCH report: 14.06.1970 England vs West Germany". www.eu-football.info. Retrieved 22 September 2012. 
  30. ^ a b c d e "Martin Peters". www.sporting-heroes.net. Retrieved 21 September 2012. 
  31. ^ "International football MATCH report: 29.04.1972 England vs West Germany". www.eu-football.info. Retrieved 22 September 2012. 
  32. ^ White, James (1 November 2011). "Polish goalkeeper whose saves kept England out of a World Cup 'was a Communist spy'". www.dailymail.co.uk. Retrieved 21 September 2012. 
  33. ^ Smith, Martin (4 March 2009). "Biog of managers from the 1974-75 season". www.telegraph.co.uk. Retrieved 19 September 2012. 
  34. ^ Gorleston FC, , (8 April 2006). "Gorleston FC History". Gorleston FC History (Norfolk). Retrieved 12 May 2010. 
  35. ^ Hattenstone, Simon (8 April 2006). "The best of times". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 12 May 2010. 
  36. ^ "The Ghost of 66". www.goodreads.co.uk. Retrieved 18 September 2012. 
  37. ^ "Hall of Fame for Greenwood and Peters". www.whufc.com. Retrieved 18 September 2012. 
  38. ^ "Footballers' wives of 1966 relive the memories". Daily Mail (London). 8 June 2006.