1995–96 in English football

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Football in England
Men's football
FA Premier LeagueManchester United
First DivisionSunderland
Second DivisionSwindon Town
Third DivisionPreston North End
Football ConferenceStevenage Borough
FA CupManchester United
Football League TrophyRotherham United
League CupAston Villa
Charity ShieldEverton
1994–95 England 1996–97

The 1995–96 season was the 116th season of competitive football in England.



Newcastle United were at one stage twelve points clear of Manchester United at the top of the table, but Alex Ferguson's relatively young and inexperienced side overhauled them during the second half of the season to win the title. Manchester United were England's entrants for the Champions League, while Newcastle United were joined in the UEFA Cup by Liverpool, the League Cup winners Aston Villa and Arsenal.

The teams relegated were Manchester City, Queens Park Rangers and Bolton Wanderers.

Division One[edit]

Sunderland and Derby County returned to the Premiership after a five-year exile, joined by Division One play-off winners Leicester City.

Watford and Luton Town, who had both been established top division sides a decade earlier, were relegated to the league's third tier. On the last day of the season they were joined by Millwall, who had been top of the division five months earlier but slumped dramatically after Mick McCarthy's departure for the Republic of Ireland manager's job.

Division Two[edit]

Swindon Town returned to Division One at the first attempt after lifting the Division Two championship trophy. They were joined by runners-up Oxford United, who were enjoying their first successful season since the mid-1980s, and playoff winners Bradford City.

Going down were Carlisle United, Swansea City (who got through five managers in a season), Brighton & Hove Albion (sinking further into a financial crisis) and Hull City.

Division Three[edit]

Preston North End, Gillingham, Bury and playoff winners Plymouth Argyle won promotion to Division Two. Preston's win made them the third club to win all four top tiers of English football, next to Wolverhampton Wanderers and Burnley.

Torquay United finished at the bottom of Division Three, having won just five games all season, but were saved from demotion because Conference champions Stevenage Borough did not meet the league's required minimum stadium capacity.

Successful managers[edit]

Alex Ferguson guided Manchester United to a unique second double of the league title and FA Cup.

Brian Little guided Aston Villa to victory in the League Cup as well as a fourth-place finish in the Premiership.

Peter Reid brought some long-awaited success to Sunderland as they finished champions of Division One and won promotion to the Premiership.

Experienced manager Jim Smith achieved another managerial success by winning promotion to the Premiership with Derby County.

Martin O'Neill achieved his third promotion in four seasons by winning promotion to the Premiership with Leicester City.

Steve McMahon succeeded in getting Swindon Town back into Division One at the first attempt as they were crowned champions of Division Two.

Denis Smith built on the success he achieved earlier in his career (with York City and later Sunderland) by gaining promotion to Division One with Oxford United.

Gary Peters had a dream start to his reign as Preston North End manager as they were crowned champions of Division Three.

Stan Ternent finally enjoyed some success in his long management and coaching career by winning promotion to Division Two with Bury.

Neil Warnock achieved the fifth promotion of his managerial career (and his fourth via the playoffs) by winning the Division Three playoffs with Plymouth Argyle.

Chris Kamara got Bradford City promoted via the Division 2 play offs just 6 months after taking over as manager. The feat was all the more amazing considering they lost 0-2 at home to Blackpool in the 1st leg of the play off semi final. A 3-0 victory in the 2nd leg saw Bradford City reach Wembley for the first ever time defeating Notts County 2-0 in the final with goals from 19-year-old local boy Des Hamilton and Kamara's first signing Mark Stallard.

Tony Pulis guided Gillingham F.C.out of Division Three and was named the Manager of the Season.[1]

Successful players[edit]

Alan Shearer topped the Premiership scoring charts with 31 goals, the highest number of goals in the league charted at the time. Shearer was followed closely by Robbie Fowler on 28, Ian Wright and Les Ferdinand, who won the PFA Players' Player of the Year award.

Steve McManaman led the assists chart with 25 assists this season, also a new record for the league.

Eric Cantona was awarded the FWA Footballer of the Year for his comeback and galvanising influence over a successful young Manchester United side.


Double delight for United[edit]

Manchester United made history as the first English club to win the double of the league title and FA Cup twice. They did so despite having sold key players Paul Ince, Mark Hughes and Andrei Kanchelskis before the start of the season. Manager Alex Ferguson selected young players like Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt, David Beckham, Gary Neville and Phil Neville, alongside more experienced players Steve Bruce, Gary Pallister and Eric Cantona. Cantona, who returned from his suspension to spearhead United's chase for trophies, was voted the FWA Footballer of the Year.

At Christmas, United trailed Newcastle United by 12 points. On 27 December they beat Newcastle 2–0 to cut the gap to seven points, and a 1–0 win at St. James' Park on 4 March cut the gap to a single point. A 1–0 win against Tottenham Hotspur on 24 March put United on top of the Premiership and they remained in that position for the rest of the season. On the final day of the season they confirmed their status as Premiership champions for the third time in four seasons thanks to a 3-0 away win over Middlesbrough, who were managed by former United captain Bryan Robson.

On 11 May, United faced Liverpool in the FA Cup final at Wembley. A late goal from Cantona saw United make history and lift the FA Cup as England's first 'double double' winners.

Venables out, Hoddle in[edit]

Terry Venables announced in January that he would not be continuing as England manager after the 1996 European Championships, so the FA began their hunt for his successor. The likes of Alex Ferguson, Howard Kendall, Steve Coppell, Gerry Francis and Kevin Keegan were all linked with the job, but all quickly ruled themselves out either because of club commitments or a lack of experience.[citation needed]

In the end, the 39-year-old Chelsea manager Glenn Hoddle agreed to take charge of the England team on a four-year contract. Hoddle's successor at Chelsea was the 33-year-old Dutch legend Ruud Gullit.

Euro '96: So close for England[edit]

In 1996 England hosted the European Championships for the first time. They went through to the quarter-finals after drawing with Switzerland and beating Scotland and the Netherlands in the group stages. They drew 0-0 with Spain in the quarter finals but England went through on penalties. A goal by Alan Shearer gave them an early lead over Germany in the semi-finals, but the Germans forced extra-time and England lost the ensuing penalty shoot-out. Germany went on to beat Czech Republic 2-1 in the final.

European competitions[edit]

English clubs endured a tough time in European competition during the 1995-96 season. Manchester United, Liverpool and Leeds United suffered early exits from the UEFA Cup, while Blackburn Rovers were eliminated from the Champions League at the group stages and Everton were dumped out of the Cup Winners Cup in the Second Round. That left Nottingham Forest as the only English club still in Europe after Christmas.

Forest took on Bayern Munich in the UEFA Cup quarter-finals and lost 2-1 away in the first leg. Jürgen Klinsmann scored twice as the German side defeated Forest 5–1 at the City ground and went on to win the competition.

Bosman ruling[edit]

A legal challenge in the European Court of Human Rights by the Belgian midfielder Jean-Marc Bosman gave out-of-contract players aged 23 or above the right to become free agents and move to other clubs for no fee. There was widespread controversy following the announcement, as many clubs feared that they would lose expensively signed players for nothing. The Bosman ruling also saw an end to the three foreigner rule which restricted teams to fielding a maximum of three players born outside the country that they were employed in. In the Premiership, the limit of three foreigners in a match squad had covered Welsh, Scottish and Northern and Southern Irish players. The Bosman ruling allowed clubs in EU countries to field an unlimited number of players who were of EU nationalities, although they were still restricted to fielding 3 players of non-EU nationalities.


Competition Winner
FA Premier League Manchester United (10/3*)
FA Cup Manchester United (9*)
Football League Cup Aston Villa (5)
Football League First Division Sunderland
Football League Second Division Swindon Town
Football League Third Division Preston North End
FA Community Shield Everton

English national team[edit]

As England was hosting the 1996 UEFA European Football Championship the English national team did not play any competitive fixtures up until the championships themselves but played a number of friendlies this season.

Date Opposition Venue Result
6 September 1995 Colombia Wembley Stadium, London D 0-0
11 October 1995 Norway Ullevaal Stadion, Oslo D 0-0
15 November 1995 Switzerland Wembley Stadium, London W 3-1
12 December 1995 Portugal Wembley Stadium, London D 1-1
27 March 1996 Bulgaria Wembley Stadium, London W 1-0
24 April 1996 Croatia Wembley Stadium, London D 0-0
18 May 1996 Hungary Wembley Stadium, London W 3-0
23 May 1996 China Workers Stadium, Beijing W 3-0

League tables[edit]


Manchester United were Premiership champions for the third time in four seasons, after Newcastle United led for most of the season, the Tyneside club's lead having peaked at 10 points just before Christmas. United also won the FA Cup to complete the double. The star of their season was undoubtedly striker Eric Cantona, who returned from his eight-month suspension at the beginning of October to spearhead United's attack with 19 goals in all competitions, several of them in crucial late season games as they took the initiative in the title race, and the last being the winning goal in the FA Cup final.

Liverpool continued to show signs of a return to their former glory by finishing third and ending the season as runners-up in the FA Cup final. Aston Villa, enjoying a revival with a reshaped squad under Brian Little, finished fourth and won the Football League Cup. Arsenal built the foundations for a revival under new manager Bruce Rioch by finishing fifth and coming within a goal of reaching the League Cup final. However, their Rioch was gone by the start of the following season after a dispute with the club's directors.

FA Cup winners Everton failed to retain the cup and finished in sixth place in the league one place outside of a UEFA Cup place.

Blackburn Rovers failed to retain their league title and finished seventh in the league, with Alan Shearer finding the net more than 30 times for the third season in a row.

Nottingham Forest finished ninth in the league and were the only English side to progress to the last eight of any of the European competitions doing so in reaching the quarter-final UEFA Cup. 1995-96 was indeed one of the worst seasons ever for English clubs in European competitions.

Bolton Wanderers were relegated in bottom place, having won just twice before New Year's Day, with not even an improvement under caretaker manager Colin Todd helping them. Queens Park Rangers were unable to recover from the sale of star striker Les Ferdinand to Newcastle and finished second bottom, ending 13 seasons in the top division. Manchester City were the last team to be relegated, eventually undone by their failure to win their first 11 matches, but they did manage to take the fight to the last day of the season. Coventry City and Southampton stayed up on goal difference.

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification or relegation
1 Manchester United (C) 38 25 7 6 73 35 +38 82 Qualification for the Champions League group stage
2 Newcastle United 38 24 6 8 66 37 +29 78 Qualification for the UEFA Cup first round
3 Liverpool 38 20 11 7 70 34 +36 71 Qualification for the Cup Winners' Cup first round[a]
4 Aston Villa 38 18 9 11 52 35 +17 63 Qualification for the UEFA Cup first round
5 Arsenal 38 17 12 9 49 32 +17 63
6 Everton 38 17 10 11 64 44 +20 61
7 Blackburn Rovers 38 18 7 13 61 47 +14 61
8 Tottenham Hotspur 38 16 13 9 50 38 +12 61
9 Nottingham Forest 38 15 13 10 50 54 −4 58
10 West Ham United 38 14 9 15 43 52 −9 51
11 Chelsea 38 12 14 12 46 44 +2 50
12 Middlesbrough 38 11 10 17 35 50 −15 43
13 Leeds United 38 12 7 19 40 57 −17 43
14 Wimbledon 38 10 11 17 55 70 −15 41
15 Sheffield Wednesday 38 10 10 18 48 61 −13 40
16 Coventry City 38 8 14 16 42 60 −18 38
17 Southampton 38 9 11 18 34 52 −18 38
18 Manchester City (R) 38 9 11 18 33 58 −25 38 Relegation to the Football League First Division
19 Queens Park Rangers (R) 38 9 6 23 38 57 −19 33
20 Bolton Wanderers (R) 38 8 5 25 39 71 −32 29
Source: Premier League
Rules for classification: 1) points; 2) goal difference; 3) number of goals scored.
(C) Champion; (R) Relegated.
  1. ^ Liverpool qualified for the Cup Winners' Cup as FA Cup runners-up, as winners Manchester United already qualified for the Champions League. They defaulted their UEFA Cup spot from league position to Arsenal.

Leading goalscorer: Alan Shearer (Blackburn Rovers) - 31

Division One[edit]

Sunderland gave their best performance in years by clinching the Division One title, and were joined among the elite by runners-up Derby County and play-off winners Leicester City. Crystal Palace conceded a last-minute Leicester winner at Wembley, and would have gone up automatically had it not been for their dismal first half of the season.

Luton Town, Watford and Millwall, who had all played in the top flight at some stage in the last nine seasons, went down to Division Two. Millwall had been top of the league five months before going down on the final day of the season before a 6-0 defeat at Sunderland signaled a dramatic decline in their fortunes.

Oldham Athletic narrowly avoided a second relegation in three seasons, while Wolverhampton Wanderers finished 20th and the last safe place was secured by Portsmouth. Norwich City and Birmingham City finished in the bottom half of the table after both enjoying spells at the top during the first half of the season. West Bromwich Albion finished 12th after a dramatic season where they had looked like promotion contenders in the autumn, before enduring a 14-match winless run where they picked up just one point and dropped into the relegation zone.

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Promotion or relegation
1 Sunderland 46 22 17 7 59 33 +26 83 Football League Champions, promoted to FA Premier League
2 Derby County 46 21 16 9 71 51 +20 79 Promoted to FA Premier League
3 Crystal Palace 46 20 15 11 67 48 +19 75 Participated in play-offs
4 Stoke City 46 20 13 13 60 49 +11 73
5 Leicester City 46 19 14 13 66 60 +6 71 Promoted to Premier League through play-offs
6 Charlton Athletic 46 17 20 9 57 45 +12 71 Participated in play-offs
7 Ipswich Town 46 19 12 15 79 69 +10 69
8 Huddersfield Town 46 17 12 17 61 58 +3 63
9 Sheffield United 46 16 14 16 57 54 +3 62
10 Barnsley 46 14 18 14 60 66 −6 60
11 West Bromwich Albion 46 16 12 18 60 68 −8 60
12 Port Vale 46 15 15 16 59 66 −7 60
13 Tranmere Rovers 46 14 17 15 64 60 +4 59
14 Southend United 46 15 14 17 52 61 −9 59
15 Birmingham City 46 15 13 18 61 64 −3 58
16 Norwich City 46 14 15 17 59 55 +4 57
17 Grimsby Town 46 14 14 18 55 69 −14 56
18 Oldham Athletic 46 14 14 18 54 50 +4 56
19 Reading 46 13 17 16 54 63 −9 56
20 Wolverhampton Wanderers 46 13 16 17 56 62 −6 55
21 Portsmouth 46 13 13 20 61 69 −8 52
22 Millwall 46 13 13 20 43 63 −20 52 Relegated
23 Watford 46 10 18 18 62 70 −8 48
24 Luton Town 46 11 12 23 40 64 −24 45

Leading goalscorer: John Aldridge (Tranmere Rovers) - 27

Division Two[edit]

Swindon Town secured an immediate return to Division One by winning the Division Two title. They were joined by local rivals and runners-up Oxford United, while the final promotion place went to playoff winners Bradford City whose Wembley glory gave Chris Kamara a dream start in management. [2]

Blackpool, who missed out on automatic promotion by one place, attained their highest league finish for more than 20 years but a playoff semi-final failure cost them a place in Division One and cost Sam Allardyce his job. Crewe Alexandra were defeated in the playoffs for the second season running, while beaten finalists Notts County had been relegated the season before.

Carlisle United, Swansea City, Brighton & Hove Albion and Hull City were relegated to Division Three. York City, who made headlines by knocking Manchester United out of the League Cup early in the season, avoided relegation by three points after beating Brighton in their delayed final fixture of the season, sending Carlisle down.

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Promotion or relegation
1 Swindon Town 46 25 17 4 71 34 +37 92 Division Champions, promoted
2 Oxford United 46 24 11 11 76 39 +37 83 Promoted
3 Blackpool 46 23 13 10 67 40 +27 82 Participated in play-offs
4 Notts County 46 21 15 10 63 39 +24 78
5 Crewe Alexandra 46 22 7 17 77 60 +17 73
6 Bradford City 46 22 7 17 71 69 +2 73 Promoted through play-offs
7 Chesterfield 46 20 12 14 56 51 +5 72
8 Wrexham 46 18 16 12 76 55 +21 70
9 Stockport County 46 19 13 14 61 47 +14 70
10 Bristol Rovers 46 20 10 16 57 60 −3 70
11 Walsall 46 19 12 15 60 45 +15 69
12 Wycombe Wanderers 46 15 15 16 63 59 +4 60
13 Bristol City 46 15 15 16 55 60 −5 60
14 Bournemouth 46 16 10 20 51 70 −19 58
15 Brentford 46 15 13 18 43 49 −6 58
16 Rotherham United 46 14 14 18 54 62 −8 56
17 Burnley 46 14 13 19 56 68 −12 55
18 Shrewsbury Town 46 13 14 19 58 70 −12 53
19 Peterborough United 46 13 13 20 59 66 −7 52
20 York City 46 13 13 20 58 73 −15 52
21 Carlisle United 46 12 13 21 57 72 −15 49 Relegated
22 Swansea City 46 11 14 21 43 79 −36 47
23 Brighton & Hove Albion 46 10 10 26 46 69 −23 40
24 Hull City 46 5 16 25 36 78 −42 31

Leading goalscorer: Marcus Stewart (Bristol Rovers) - 21

Division Three[edit]

Preston North End got on the right path towards better days by sealing the Division Three title. Joining them in Division Two were runners-up Gillingham (after seven years in the league's basement division), third placed Bury and playoff winners Plymouth Argyle.

Torquay United finished at the bottom of the league by quite a margin, but avoided relegation because Conference champions Stevenage Borough did not meet the required Football League stadium capacity standards. Scarborough endured another torrid season, finishing second from bottom in the league for the second season in succession.

Lincoln City climbed up to 18th place under John Beck, who took over in October after the club had propped up the Football League. Fulham suffered the lowest finish of their history by finishing 17th, and weeks before the end of the season they appointed Micky Adams as player-manager in hope that the former Coventry and Southampton defender could revive the club after a decade of decline. Cambridge United finished 16th in the table, a mere four years after narrowly missing out on promotion to the inaugural Premier League.

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Promotion
1 Preston North End 46 23 17 6 78 38 +40 86 Division Champions, promoted
2 Gillingham 46 22 17 7 49 20 +29 83 Promoted
3 Bury 46 22 13 11 66 48 +18 79
4 Plymouth Argyle 46 22 12 12 68 49 +19 78 Promoted through play-offs
5 Darlington 46 20 18 8 60 42 +18 78 Participated in play-offs
6 Hereford United 46 20 14 12 65 47 +18 74
7 Colchester United 46 18 18 10 61 51 +10 72
8 Barnet 46 18 16 12 65 45 +20 70
9 Chester City 46 18 16 12 72 53 +19 70
10 Wigan Athletic 46 20 10 16 62 56 +6 70
11 Northampton Town 46 18 13 15 51 44 +7 67
12 Scunthorpe United 46 15 15 16 67 61 +6 60
13 Doncaster Rovers 46 16 11 19 49 60 −11 59
14 Exeter City 46 13 18 15 46 53 −7 57
15 Rochdale 46 14 13 19 57 61 −4 55
16 Cambridge United 46 14 12 20 61 71 −10 54
17 Fulham 46 12 17 17 57 63 −6 53
18 Mansfield Town 46 11 20 15 54 64 −10 53
19 Lincoln City 46 13 14 19 57 73 −16 53
20 Hartlepool United 46 12 13 21 47 67 −20 49
21 Leyton Orient 46 12 11 23 44 63 −19 47
22 Cardiff City 46 11 12 23 41 64 −23 45
23 Scarborough 46 8 16 22 39 69 −30 40
24 Torquay United 46 5 14 27 30 84 −54 29

Leading goalscorers: Steve White (Hereford United) - 30

Diary of the season[edit]

30 June 1995: Tottenham Hotspur paid a club-record £4.5 million for striker Chris Armstrong from relegated Crystal Palace.

1 July 1995: Nottingham Forest paid a club-record £2.5 million for Sheffield Wednesday midfielder Chris Bart-Williams, the day they sold striker Stan Collymore to Liverpool for a national-record £8.5 million. Collymore was replaced by Kevin Campbell, a £2.8-million signing from Arsenal.

3 July 1995: Alan Ball was appointed the new manager of Manchester City.

5 July 1995: Aston Villa acquired Leicester City midfielder Mark Draper for £3.25 million.

6 July 1995: Newcastle United signed French winger David Ginola from Paris St Germain for £2.5 million and striker Les Ferdinand from Queens Park Rangers for a club-record £6 million.

10 July 1995: England midfielder Paul Gascoigne returned to the UK after three years in a £4.3-million move to Glasgow club Rangers.

12 July 1995: George Graham was banned from football for a year for accepting illegal payments, after he was fired as Arsenal manager five months earlier.

14 July 1995: Arsenal paid a club-record £4.75 million for England captain David Platt from Sampdoria. Platt was the world's costliest player, with transfer fees totalling £22.15 million.

17 July 1995: Mike Naylor, chairman and founder of the sponsors of the Football League, Endsleigh Insurance, died in a car accident.

19 July 1995: Sheffield Wednesday signed Belgian midfielder Marc Degryse from Anderlecht for £1.5 million.

24 July 1995: Bruce Grobbelaar, Hans Segers and John Fashanu were charged with match-fixing and bribery.

26 July 1995: Queens Park Rangers signed Australia national football team captain Ned Zelic from Borussia Dortmund of Germany for £1.25 million.

1 August 1995: Everton signed Derby County defender Craig Short for £2.4 million.

3 August 1995: Coventry City bought winger John Salako from Crystal Palace for £1.5 million.

5 August 1995: Middlesbrough paid a club-record £5.25 million for Tottenham forward Nick Barmby.[2]

8 August 1995: Eric Cantona announced his intention to leave English football, but Manchester United refused to terminate his contract.[3]

10 August 1995: Cantona announced his intention to stay with Manchester United after a discussion with Alex Ferguson. Newcastle United signed Reading goalkeeper Shaka Hislop for £1.575 million.

16 August 1995: Andrea Silenzi was the first Italian to play for a Premier League side when he agreed to join Nottingham Forest in a £1.8-million move from Torino.

19 August 1995: The FA Premier League season began with Manchester United defeated 3-1 at Aston Villa. Blackburn Rovers won 1-0 at home against Queens Park Rangers. Matt Le Tissier scored a hat-trick for Southampton at The Dell but they lost 4-3 to Nottingham Forest. Newcastle United defeated Coventry City 3-0 at home, with a goal by debutant Les Ferdinand. Bolton Wanderers lost 3-2 to Wimbledon at Selhurst Park.

20 August 1995: Middlesbrough's Nick Barmby scored in his debut, a 1-1 draw against Arsenal at Highbury.

21 August 1995: Leeds United's Ghanaian international striker, Tony Yeboah, scored the first of his Goals of the Month against Liverpool.

24 August 1995: Everton paid a club-record £5 million for Manchester United winger Andrei Kanchelskis.

26 August 1995: Middlesbrough defeated Chelsea 2-0 at new Riverside Stadium, with Craig Hignett scoring the stadium's first goal.

28 August 1995: Manchester United defeated Blackburn Rovers 2-1, with Roy Keane sent off for two bookable offences.

31 August 1995: Newcastle United was undefeated after three games so far, ahead of Leeds United and Manchester United on goal difference.[4] First Division was led by Millwall, followed by Barnsley.[5]

9 September 1995: In their first meeting since the FA Cup Final, Manchester United defeated Everton 3-2. Lee Sharpe scored twice, and former United player Andrei Kanchelskis was sidelined with a dislocated shoulder.

20 September 1995: York City defeated Manchester United 3-0 in the League Cup second-round first leg. United won the second leg, 3-1, but went out 4-3 on aggregate.

23 September 1995: Rangers striker Mark Hateley was transferred to Queens Park Rangers, and Robbie Fowler scored four goals for Liverpool in their 5-0 victory over Bolton Wanderers. Manchester United topped the Premier League with a goalless away draw against Sheffield Wednesday. Alan Shearer had a hat-trick for Blackburn Rovers at home against Coventry City in a 5-1 win.

30 September 1995: Newcastle United remained atop the Premier League, with seven wins in their first eight games.[6] Leicester City led Division One, followed by Barnsley and Millwall.[7]

1 October 1995: Eric Cantona returned from an eight-month suspension to score in a 2-2 home draw with Liverpool; Newcastle extended their Premier League lead with a 3-1 away win against Everton.

11 October 1995: Everton striker Duncan Ferguson was sentenced to three months' imprisonment for assault for his headbutt of Raith Rovers' John McStay 18 months ago, making him the first footballer in British history to be imprisoned for an on-field offence.

14 October 1995: 20-year-old striker Paul Scholes scored the only goal of the Manchester derby at Old Trafford, aiding United's title challenge and pushing City further into relegation territory.

15 October 1995: Bryan Robson signed Brazilian midfielder Juninho, one of the most sought-after players in world football, to a £4.75-million deal.

21 October 1995: Les Ferdinand scored a hat-trick in Newcastle's 6-1 home league win against Wimbledon, and Manchester United remained in second place with a 4-1 away victory over Chelsea.

28 October 1995: The Football Association announced that the 72 Football League clubs would receive an additional £21 million in television revenue after they failed to agree on an initial sum of nearly £120 million.[8] Liverpool's Ian Rush scored twice in a 6-0 home league win against Manchester City, and Leeds United captain Gary McAllister scored a hat-trick in a 3-1 home league win over Coventry City.

30 October 1995: Striker John McGinlay scored for struggling Bolton Wanderers in a surprise 1-0 home win against Arsenal.

31 October 1995: Newcastle United remained on top, with one-point and one-game advantages over Manchester United. Manchester City was still winless after 11 games, with Bolton Wanderers and Southampton also in the bottom three. Everton struggled, two points and two places clear of relegation.[9] Millwall led for promotion to the Premier League, three points ahead of Leicester City at the top of Division One.[10]

4 November 1995: Manchester United lost 1-0 at Arsenal, and Newcastle extended their lead with a 2-1 home win over Liverpool.

8 November 1995: Chelsea signed Dan Petrescu from Sheffield Wednesday for a club-record £2.3million.

10 November 1995: The FA withdrew its £118.5-million television deal with Football League clubs after they failed to meet a deadline.[11]

11 November 1995: In the FA Cup's first round, Shrewsbury Town defeated Northern Premier League side Marine by a club-record 11-2 and Division Two crisis club Swansea City lost 7-0 to Division Three side Fulham. Division Two's Bradford City narrowly defeated non-league outfit Burton Albion, 4-3. Hitchin Town upset Bristol Rovers, 2-1. Dorchester Town lost to Oxford United, 9-1.

13 November 1995: Former England manager Graham Taylor resigned after 20 months managing Wolverhampton Wanderers, who began the season as Division One promotion favourites but fell to 19th.

17 November 1995: Kenny Dalglish, director of football at Blackburn Rovers since June after guiding them to the Premier League title, was reportedly in the running to manage Wolves.

18 November 1995: Blackburn improved, with a 7-0 home win against Nottingham Forest.

24 November 1995: In the FA Premier League, 26-year-old Swedish striker Tomas Brolin went to Leeds United from Parma for a club-record £4.5 million. Everton striker Duncan Ferguson was released from prison after serving 44 days of his three-month sentence for assault.

25 November 1995: Steve Nicol returned to the Premier League less than a year after leaving Liverpool for a Notts County side now in Division Two, signing with Sheffield Wednesday.[12]

27 November 1995: The Football League signed a five-year television-coverage deal worth £125 million with BSkyB.[13]

30 November 1995: Newcastle United led by five points over Manchester United. Manchester City escaped the relegation zone with their first three wins of the season, with Bolton Wanderers, Coventry City and Queens Park Rangers the bottom three.[14] Millwall remained atop Division One, with Grimsby Town a surprising second.[15]

2 December 1995: Alan Shearer scored a hat-trick in Blackburn's 4-2 home win against West Ham United, and Manchester United were held to a 1-1 home draw by Chelsea.

3 December 1995: Newcastle remained five points ahead of Manchester United after being held to a 3-3 draw at Wimbledon.

4 December 1995: Although Dion Dublin scored a hat-trick for Coventry City, they lost 4-3 to Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough.

7 December 1995: Mark McGhee resigned as manager of Division One promotion challengers Leicester City to manage the relegation-threatened Wolverhampton Wanderers.

9 December 1995: Defending Premier League champions Blackburn Rovers were shut out 5-0 by Coventry City, and in Division One Sunderland took the lead after defeating previous leaders Millwall 6-0 at Roker Park.

12 December 1995: Dave Bassett, the fifth-longest-serving manager in the English league, resigned as manager of Division One's Sheffield United. In one of the season's highest-scoring games, Walsall defeated Torquay United 8-4 in the FA Cup second-round replay at Bescot Stadium which followed a 1-1 draw in the first match at Plainmoor 10 days earlier.

13 December 1995: Former Everton manager Howard Kendall is named the new manager of Sheffield United.

15 December 1995: Queens Park Rangers' Ned Zelic returned to Germany in a £1-million move to Eintracht Frankfurt.

16 December 1995: Blackburn Rovers left back Graeme Le Saux fractured his ankle in a 1-0 home win against Middlesbrough in the FA Premier League. Le Saux would be out of action for at least nine months, missing Euro 96. Newcastle United go seven points ahead in the Premier League with a 1-0 victory over Everton, and new Aston Villa striker Savo Milosevic scored a hat-trick in Villa's 4-1 home win against Coventry City.

17 December 1995: Manchester United remained seven points behind Newcastle after losing 2-0 at Liverpool, where Robbie Fowler scored twice.

21 December 1995: Norwich City's Martin O'Neill resigned as manager to take over at Leicester City, and Division One bottom club Luton Town replaced Terry Westley with Bradford City's Lennie Lawrence. England World Cup winner Jack Charlton resigned after nearly 10 years as manager of the Republic of Ireland national football team.

22 December 1995: Bolton Wanderers, the bottom club in the Premier League, paid a club-record £1.2 million for Sheffield United striker Nathan Blake.

23 December 1995: Coventry City defeated Everton 2-1 at home. Robbie Fowler scored a hat-trick for Liverpool at home against Arsenal for the second season running in a 3-1 win. Newcastle United extended their lead to 10 points with a 3-1 win over Nottingham Forest.

24 December 1995: Newcastle remained 10 points ahead as their nearest rivals, Manchester United, lost 3-1 at Leeds United.

27 December 1995: Manchester United cuts the lead in the FA Premier League to seven points with a 2-0 home win against Newcastle.

30 December 1995: Manchester United reduced Newcastle's lead to four points with a 2-1 win against Queens Park Rangers. Alan Shearer scored his 100th goal for Backburn since joining them in 1992 in a 2-1 home win against Tottenham.[16]

31 December 1995: Although Newcastle United's lead was down to four points, Kevin Keegan's men had a game in hand. Manchester City, Queens Park Rangers and Bolton Wanderers occupied the three relegation places; at the top Liverpool were threatening, with Tottenham Hotspur also in good form.[17] Derby County led Division One, with Sunderland in second place. Wolverhampton Wanderers and Sheffield United slipped into the relegation zone with Luton Town.[18]

1 January 1996: Manchester United lost 4-1 at Tottenham, increasing Newcastle United's lead to seven points.

2 January 1996: Roy McFarland was sacked as manager of Bolton Wanderers, and assistant Colin Todd was promoted to manager. Newcastle United regained a seven-point by defeating Arsenal 2-0 at home.

6 January 1996: Ian Rush broke Denis Law's FA Cup goal-scoring record with two goals for Liverpool in their 7-0 win over Rochdale in the third round. An 80th-minute goal by Eric Cantona forced a 2-2 draw for Sunderland against Manchester United at Old Trafford.

10 January 1996: Terry Venables announced that he would resign as England manager after Euro 96 to focus on clearing his name in a legal dispute with Alan Sugar over his June 1993 dismissal from Tottenham Hotspur.

15 January 1996: Bryan Robson, Middlesbrough manager and England assistant manager, was reportedly in line to succeed Terry Venables as England manager after Euro 96.

16 January 1996: Sunderland's battle with Manchester United in the FA Cup third round ended in the replay at Roker Park after late goals from Nicky Butt and Andy Cole gave United a 2-1 win.

17 January 1996: In the FA Cup third round, Sheffield United eliminated Arsenal with a 1-0 replay win at Bramall Lane in which Carl Veart scored the winning goal.

20 January 1996: Neil Ruddock and Robbie Fowler scored twice each in Liverpool's 5-0 home win over Leeds United. Newcastle United beat Bolton Wanderers 2–1 to go 12 points clear at the top of the table, ahead of Liverpool and Manchester United.

23 January 1996: Blackburn Rovers blocked a move by the Irish Football Association to appoint their director of football, Kenny Dalglish, as the national coach.

24 January 1996: Nigel Clough is sold to Manchester City for £1.5 million.

27 January 1996: Manchester United defeated Reading in the FA Cup fourth round, 3-0, at Elm Park. Paul Parker scored his second goal for the club. Only four matches were played that weekend, and only two of these matches resulted in a victory.

30 January 1996: Bryan Robson was reportedly the Football Association's choice for manager of England.

31 January 1996: Newcastle United led Manchester United by nine points, with a game in hand. Manchester United signed Manchester City goalkeeper Tony Coton for £500,000 as cover for Peter Schmeichel.[19] Derby County led Division One, with Charlton Athletic second. West Bromwich Albion approached relegation, a goal away from the bottom three.[20]

3 February 1996: Eric Cantona returned to Selhurst Park for the first time since his flying kick the previous year,[21] scoring twice as United defeated Wimbledon 4-2.[22]

4 February 1996: Gavin Peacock scored a hat-trick in Chelsea's 5-0 win against Middlesbrough.

5 February 1996: Millwall manager Mick McCarthy was appointed manager of the Republic of Ireland team.

6 February 1996: Wolverhampton Wanderers midfielder Jimmy Kelly was imprisoned for five years for manslaughter after he kicked a woman he kicked in the head during a Liverpool nightclub brawl.

8 February 1996: The Department of Employment denied work permits to Marc Hottiger (who agreed to move from Newcastle United to Everton) and Ilie Dumitrescu (who agreed to move from Tottenham Hotspur to West Ham). Crystal Palace appointed Dave Bassett manager, ending Steve Coppell's brief second stint.

10 February 1996: Newcastle United broke their transfer record with a £6.7-million move for Parma and Colombia striker Faustino Asprilla.

14 February 1996: Former Liverpool manager Bob Paisley died at 77, four years after announcing that he had Alzheimer's disease. Everton surrendered their defence of the FA Cup with a fourth-round replay defeat by Port Vale. West Ham United's FA Cup dreams ended with a 3-0 loss to Grimsby Town.

17 February 1996: Middlesbrough lost 4-1 at home to the resurgent Bolton Wanderers.

24 February 1996: Manchester City held Newcastle United to a 3-3 draw at Maine Road.

25 February 1996: Newcastle's lead was cut to four points when Manchester United shut out Bolton Wanderers, 6-0.

28 February 1996: Swindon Town and Huddersfield Town, the last remaining non-Premier League teams in the FA Cup, were defeated in fifth-round replays.

29 February 1996: Newcastle United's lead was down to four points. Bolton Wanderers were at the bottom, with 16 points and a 6-0 shutout by Manchester United making relegation likely.[23] Derby County and Sunderland led Division One, with Charlton Athletic, Huddersfield Town, Barnsley and Stoke City completing the top six.[24]

2 March 1996: A much-changed Nottingham Forest team find their first away win since October with victory over Sheffield Wednesday. At the lower reaches of the table, Manchester City climb out of the relegation zone at the expense of Southampton, and bottom club Bolton find a rare win at Leeds.[25]

4 March 1996: Manchester United cut Newcastle United's lead to one point with a goal by Eric Cantona goal for a 1-0 win at St James' Park.

5 March 1996: Arsenal's bid for a UEFA Cup place was bolstered when they defeated Manchester City 3-1 at Highbury.

7 March 1996: Marc Hottiger and Ilie Dumitrescu received work permits to complete their transfers.

11 March 1996: Manchester United remained in line for a unique second double by defeating Southampton 2-0 in the FA Cup quarter-final at Old Trafford.

16 March 1996: Manchester United took the FA Premier League lead on goal difference, with a 1-1 away draw against Queens Park Rangers.

18 March 1996: Newcastle regained their lead with a 3-0 home win against West Ham.

20 March 1996: An Eric Cantona goal put Manchester United back in the Premier League lead on goal difference as they defeated Arsenal 1-0 at Old Trafford.

23 March 1996: Arsenal aided Manchester United's title bid by defeating Newcastle United 2-0 at Highbury, sending Alex Ferguson's team back to the top on goal difference.

24 March 1996: Aston Villa defeated Leeds United 3-0 in the League Cup final, and Manchester United defeated Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 for a three-point lead over Newcastle.

25 March 1996: To celebrate England's hosting of the European Championships, an edition of stamps commemorating five legends of the English game was announced. After a public poll, Dixie Dean, Bobby Moore, Duncan Edwards, Billy Wright and Danny Blanchflower were selected.

28 March 1996: Manchester City signed Georgian striker Mikhail Kavelashvili from Alania Vladikavkaz for £1.4 million.

30 March 1996: Queens Park Rangers shut out Southampton at home, 3-0. In the race for a UEFA Cup place, Andrei Kanchelskis scored twice as Everton shut out Blackburn 3-0.

31 March 1996: Manchester United led Newcastle United by three points, although Newcastle had two games in hand. Arsenal edged local rivals Tottenham Hotspur out of the top five. At the other end of the table Bolton Wanderers, Queens Park Rangers and Manchester City hoped to avoid relegation.[26] Sunderland led Division One by four points over Derby County, who had a game in hand. Crystal Palace was third, followed by Charlton Athletic, Ipswich Town and Stoke City.[27]

3 April 1996: Liverpool defeated Newcastle United 4-3. Robbie Fowler and Stan Collymore both scored twice for the hosts, aid Manchester United's title bid.

5 April 1996: Middlesbrough moved closer to survival and mid-table security with a 3-1 home win against Sheffield Wednesday, still in a precarious position.

6 April 1996: Manchester United retained their lead in the Premier League with a 3-2 win over City in the Manchester derby at Maine Road, putting City deeper into relegation trouble.

8 April 1996: Coventry City defender David Busst sustained a compound leg fracture in the 1-0 Premier League defeat by Manchester United at Old Trafford. Busst was expected to be out of action for at least a year, and might never play senior football again. United moved closer to the title with Newcastle's 2-1 defeat by Blackburn. Queens Park Rangers kept their survival bid alive by defeating Everton 3-1. Bolton Wanderers also kept their survival hopes alive by defeating Chelsea, 2-1.

12 April 1996: John Aldridge was appointed player-manager of Tranmere Rovers, succeeding nine-year manager John King.

13 April 1996: Mark Hughes scored his first hat-trick for Chelsea as they defeated Leeds United 4-1 at Stamford Bridge. Although Manchester United was upset 3-1 by Southampton, they still had a six-point lead.

14 April 1996: Newcastle kept their title challenge alive by defeating Aston Villa 1-0, cutting Manchester United's lead to three points.

16 April 1996: The Merseyside derby at Goodison Park ended in a 1-1 draw, with Andrei Kanchelskis scoring for Everton and Robbie Fowler for Liverpool.

17 April 1996: Manchester United and Newcastle United won 1-0 at home (against Leeds United and Southampton, respectively), keeping Manchester's lead at three points.

20 April 1996: Sunderland won promotion to the Premier League, playing Middlesbrough and Newcastle United for the first time since the 1970s.

22 April 1996: England midfielder Paul Gascoigne publicly asked Terry Venables to remain as manager.

25 April 1996: Bryan Robson agreed to remain at Middlesbrough until at least the end of the 1999-2000 season.

27 April 1996: Bolton Wanderers were relegated after one season in the Premier League, losing 1-0 at home to Southampton. Although Queens Park Rangers defeated West Ham United 3-0, they were relegated after 13 years. Manchester City upset Aston Villa 1-0, and Coventry City defeated Wimbledon 2-0.

28 April 1996: A 5-0 home win against Nottingham Forest moved Manchester United closer to their third league title in four seasons.

29 April 1996: The Football Association offered Chelsea manager Glenn Hoddle the England manager's job. Hoddle, in management since taking over at Swindon Town five years ago, took them into the Premier League in 1993 before taking over at Chelsea. Newcastle United defeated Leeds United 1-0; Newcastle manager Kevin Keegan railed against his opposite number at Manchester United, Alex Ferguson.

30 April 1996: Manchester United were title favourites, with a six-point lead over Newcastle United (who had two games in hand). Aston Villa clinched a top-five finish, with the final UEFA Cup place down to Arsenal, Everton, Blackburn Rovers and Tottenham Hotspur. Queens Park Rangers and Bolton Wanderers were relegated.[28] The race for the final automatic-promotion place in Division One was between Derby County and Crystal Palace, with Stoke City, Charlton Athletic and Leicester City completing the top six.[29]

2 May 1996: Chelsea boss Glenn Hoddle agreed to a four-year contract as England manager after the European Football Championships. Former Manchester City chairman Peter Swales died of a heart attack at 63. Newcastle United were held to a 1-1 draw at Nottingham Forest.[30]

5 May 1996: Manchester United clinched the Premier League title with a 3-0 away win against Middlesbrough on the season's final day, also clinching a place in the European Cup. UEFA Cup places went to Newcastle United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Aston Villa. Relegated to Division One were Manchester City, Queens Park Rangers and Bolton Wanderers.

10 May 1996: Ruud Gullit accepted Chelsea's offer to become their player-manager, replacing Glenn Hoddle. Gullit, 33, would be the youngest manager in the Premier League and its only foreign manager.

11 May 1996: Manchester United were the first English team to repeat the "double" when a late Eric Cantona goal gave them a 1-0 win over Liverpool in the FA Cup final.

14 May 1996: Middlesbrough agree to a £4-million fee for FC Porto's Brazilian midfielder, Emerson.

18 May 1996: England beat Hungary 3–0 in a friendly witnessed by incoming Three Lions manager Glenn Hoddle and his second-in-command John Gorman: one Darren Anderton goal in each half coming either side of David Platt's 27th international goal.[31]

19 May 1996: Ian Rush leaves Liverpool after two stints: the first beginning in 1980, the second beginning in 1988. He will join Leeds United on a free transfer on 1 July.[32]

20 May 1996: Glenn Hoddle agreed to play for Chelsea in a posthumous testimonial match for the former Swindon Town physio Kevin Morris.[33]

24 May 1996: Gianluca Vialli agrees to sign for Chelsea on a free transfer from Juventus.

27 May 1996: Although England's 22-man squad for Euro 96 was not yet confirmed, 35-year-old Newcastle United forward Peter Beardsley was reportedly not on the list.

28 May 1996: Leicester City won promotion back to the Premier League with a 2-1 win against Crystal Palace at Wembley Stadium.[34] England's Euro 96 squad was announced, with notable omissions Peter Beardsley, Ugo Ehiogu, Dennis Wise, Robert Lee and Jason Wilcox.[35] Stuart Pearce, who does feature in the 22-man cohort, signs a three-year contract with Nottingham Forest.[36]

8 June 1996: FIFA mandated licensing for all football agents involved in transfers. The Premier League announced that teams would be able to select five substitutes on the match squad (increased from three), although only three could be used.[37]

25 June 1996: England bow out of Euro 96 in the semi-final when a Gareth Southgate penalty miss put them out after a 1-1 draw with Germany.

30 June 1996: Euro 96 is won by Germany, who defeat the Czech Republic 2-1 at Wembley; Oliver Bierhoff scores both of Germany's goals.

Transfer deals[edit]

For subsequent transfer deals see 1996-97 in English football.

Notable debutants[edit]

26 August 1995: Michael Brown, 18-year-old midfielder, makes his debut for Manchester City in a 1-0 defeat to QPR at Loftus Road in the Premier League.[38]

13 January 1996: Ian Harte, 18-year-old left-back, makes his debut as a substitute in a 2-0 home win for Leeds United against West Ham United in the Premier League.[39]

31 January 1996: Frank Lampard, 17-year-old midfielder, makes his debut for West Ham United—where his father Frank Lampard made over 650 appearances[40]—in their 3-2 home win over Coventry City in the Premier League.[41]

30 March 1996: Harry Kewell, 18-year-old Australian winger, makes his debut for Leeds United against Middlesbrough in the Premier League.

5 May 1996: Rio Ferdinand, 18-year-old central defender, makes his debut for West Ham United in their 1-1 home draw with Sheffield Wednesday on the final day of the Premier League season.[42]


19 July 1995: Alan Smith, 32-year-old Arsenal striker who helped them win five major trophies since joining them in 1987, retires after failing to recover from an ankle injury.[43]

10 October 1995: Clive Allen, 34-year-old striker, retires after being given a free transfer by Carlisle United after playing just three games for them in Division Two. His best days came at Tottenham Hotspur, where he scored 49 goals in all competitions in the 1986-87 season and was voted PFA Player of the Year.[44]

16 October 1995: David O'Leary, 37-year-old Leeds United defender, retires due to an achilles injury after 18 months out of action.[45]

11 November 1995: Jimmy Case, 41-year-old Brighton & Hove Albion player-manager, announces his retirement from playing. Case, who is best known for his time at Liverpool and Southampton, was the oldest outfield player registered in the English Football League or Premier League.[46]

11 November 1995: Simon Webster, 31-year-old West Ham United defender, retires after failing to recover from a broken leg suffered in a training ground collision with Julian Dicks.[46]

4 January 1996: Paul Lake, 27-year-old Manchester City midfielder, retired after failing to recover from a succession of knee injuries which had seen him out of action for more than three years and play just six times in as many seasons. He underwent numerous operations to try and regain full fitness, but was unsuccessful.


  • July 1995 – John Marshall, 16, England Youth international who died suddenly from a heart defect just before he was due to sign an apprenticeship with Everton.[47]
  • 13 July 1995 – Garth Butler, 72, played 134 games at full-back for Port Vale after the end of World War II, before an ankle injury halted his career in 1951.
  • August 1995 – Dennis Allen, 56, was a former player of Charlton Athletic, Reading and Portsmouth. He was a member of a strong footballing family, being the father of Martin Allen, the brother of Les Allen, and the uncle of Paul Allen, Clive Allen and Bradley Allen.
  • 23 August 1995 – Johnny Carey, 76, former Manchester United defender and Republic of Ireland international. Won the league in 1952, and the FA Cup in 1948. Later managed a number of clubs, including Blackburn Rovers, Everton, Leyton Orient and Nottingham Forest.
  • 14 September 1995 – Harold Shepherdson, 76, longtime assistant coach for the England national team, a role he held during England's 1966 World Cup victory.
  • 21 September 1995 – Michael Millett, 17, Wigan Athletic defender, died in a car crash one day before his 18th birthday. Had played three times for his club and was tipped by many to reach the highest level.
  • 25 September 1995 – Dave Bowen, 67, former Arsenal and Northampton Town defender, who won 19 caps for Wales and represented his country at the 1958 World Cup. Later became Northampton's most successful manager of all time, guiding the Cobblers from the fourth to the first division in four seasons.
  • 28 September 1995 – Albert Johanneson, 55, South African winger who played for Leeds United during the 1960s and played in their first league championship winning team in 1969. Moved to York City a year later. Died alone at his tower block flat in Leeds.
  • 23 October 1995 – James Mangham, 88, one of the oldest surviving league players, played twice in goal in the Third Division North for Nelson in the late 1920s.
  • 30 October 1995 – William "Taffy" Davies, 85, played 284 league games on the wing for Watford between 1930 and 1950, his career being disrupted by World War II. His only international recognition for Wales came in 1944 when he played for the wartime national side.
  • 25 November 1995 – Alan Nicholls, 22, former Plymouth Argyle goalkeeper, was killed in a motorcycle crash near Peterborough which also claimed the life of the motorcyclist whose motorcycle he was a passenger on. At the time of his death, was playing for Stalybridge Celtic in the Conference after a brief spell at Gillingham.
  • 14 December 1995 – Eddie Clamp, 61, played 214 times at wing-half for Wolverhampton Wanderers between 1953 and 1961, during which time the club won three league titles and an FA Cup. Was capped four times for England. Signed for Arsenal in 1961, later playing for Stoke City before playing his last senior game in 1965 for Peterborough United.
  • 29 December 1995 – Harry Cripps, 54, played 400 league games in Millwall's defence between 1961 and 1974, during which time Millwall enjoyed a 59-match unbeaten run at home at reached the Second Division with two successive promotions. Finished his career at Charlton Athletic, later serving the South London side as a coach, before moving into management with non-league Barking and then back in the Football League at Southend United.
  • 11 January 1996 – Bobby Cowell, 73, spent his entire playing career at Newcastle United, making 289 appearances in the league as a defender between 1946 and 1955, winning three FA Cups before his career was ended by injury.
  • 13 January 1996 – Bobby Langton, 77, former Blackburn Rovers and Preston North End left-winger who also won 11 caps for England.
  • 16 January 1996 – Harry Potts, 75, former Burnley player and manager. Played 165 league games for the Charets between 1946 and 1950, and was appointed manager in 1958, a post he held until 1970, winning the 1959-60 league championship. He also had a second spell as Burnley manager between 1977 and 1979.
  • 16 January 1996 – Dai Ward, 61, former Bristol Rovers, Cardiff City, Watford and Brentford striker who made over 300 appearances in the Football League, averaging just over a goal every other game, and won two caps for Wales.
  • 9 February 1996 – Neil Franklin, 74, an outstanding centre-half with Stoke City, winning 27 England caps. In 1950, he agreed to join Santa Fé of the non-FIFA sanctioned Colombian league where he would allegedly receive "ten times his English wages", but returned to England disillusioned and never played top-flight football again.
  • 14 February 1996 – Bob Paisley, 77, former Liverpool manager who won a total of 21 trophies (including six league titles and three European Cups) between 1974 and 1983. He had previously been employed by the club as a player and later as a coach. After retiring, he remained at the club as a director and later president. At the time of his death he was still the most successful manager in English football.
  • 8 March 1996 – Alan Brown, 81, played 148 games as a centre-half for Huddersfield Town, Burnley and Notts County between 1933 and 1949. Later coached at Sheffield Wednesday before managing Burnley and Sunderland before returning to Sheffield Wednesday as manager, then managing Sunderland again before his managerial career ended in dismissal in November 1972, six months before his Roker Park successor Bob Stokoe guided the club to FA Cup glory.
  • 16 March 1996 – Dennis Jennings, 85, became Birmingham City's oldest player when he made his final appearance for them in May 1950 just before his 40th birthday, the last of 192 league appearances for the club he had first joined in 1936, having previously played for Huddersfield Town and Grimsby Town.
  • 1 May 1996 – Eric Houghton, 85, managed Aston Villa to a then record seventh FA Cup triumph in 1957, having served as a player for two decades after signing for them in 1927, scoring more than 200 goals in all competitions. He was also capped seven times by England. Houghton was the great-uncle of former England goalkeeper Chris Woods.
  • 2 May 1996 – Peter Swales, 63, who was chairman of Manchester City from 1973 to 1993, died after suffering a heart attack.[48]
  • 15 June 1996 – Allenby Chilton, 77, was centre-half in Manchester United's FA Cup winning side of 1948 and league champions of 1952, playing a total of nearly 400 games for the club between 1938 and 1955, when he transferred to Grimsby Town to become player-manager after losing his place in Matt Busby's team to Mark Jones, who went on to lose his life in the Munich crash of 1958. Chilton was capped twice by England in the early 1950s.


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