Bill Slater (footballer)
|Full name||William John Slater|
|Date of birth||29 April 1927|
|Place of birth||Clitheroe, England|
|Date of death||18 December 2018(aged 91)|
|Playing position||Inside forward, left half, full back|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only|
William John Slater, CBE (29 April 1927 – 18 December 2018), also commonly known as W. J. Slater, was an English professional footballer. Slater made the majority of his appearances for Wolverhampton Wanderers, with whom he won three league championships and the FA Cup.
Slater started his career as a 16-year-old amateur at Blackpool in 1944 and played in the 1951 FA Cup Final in which Blackpool lost to Newcastle United, becoming the last amateur to play in an FA Cup Final at Wembley. Another record he jointly holds is Blackpool's fastest-ever goal: 11 seconds into a game against Stoke City on 10 December 1949. This was matched by James Quinn in 1995. Slater made his Blackpool debut on 10 September 1949, in a goalless draw at Aston Villa. As an inside-forward, he competed with Allan Brown for the number 10 position for the majority of his time at the seaside.
After finishing college, in December 1951 he moved to Brentford where he made 8 appearances and then, in August 1952, joined Wolverhampton Wanderers as a part-time professional. He remained at Molineux until 1963, making 339 total appearances and scoring 25 goals. He won three Football League championships (1953–54, 1957–58, 1958–59), as well as being runners-up (1954–55, 1959–60). He also won an FA Cup (1960, against Blackburn Rovers, in the year he was voted Footballer of the Year). He gained 12 caps for England (including four in the 1958 World Cup) and 20 amateur caps.
At the World Cup he played all four of England's matches, the first two at left half and then in midfield. In the second game against Brazil he marked the influential midfielder Didi effectively, with England securing a 0-0 draw. Slater also represented Great Britain at the 1952 Summer Olympics. He also played cricket for Warwickshire's second XI, in both the Second XI Championship and the Minor Counties Championship.
In 1982, Slater was appointed an OBE for his services to sport. A CBE followed in 1998. In February 2009, his daughter Barbara Slater was chosen to be the first female Director of Sport at the BBC. Slater died on 18 December 2018, aged 91, from complications of Alzheimer's disease.
- First Division
- FA Cup
- Wolverhampton Wanderers Hall of Fame
- Order of the British Empire: 1982 Officer (Civil)
- Order of the British Empire: 1998 Commander (Civil)
- FWA Footballer of the Year: 1960
- Bill Slater at Post War English & Scottish Football League A–Z Player's Database
- Wolverhampton Wanderers profile
- "Bill Slater". Barry Hugman's Footballers. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
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- "Wolverhampton Wanderers FC". Retrieved 3 January 2018.
- Gillatt, Peter (30 November 2009). Blackpool FC On This Day: History, Facts and Figures from Every Day of the Year. City: Pitch Publishing Ltd. ISBN 1-905411-50-2.
- Calley, Roy (1992). Blackpool: A Complete Record 1887–1992. Breedon Books Sport. ISBN 1-873626-07-X.
- Haynes, Graham; Coumbe, Frank (2006). Timeless Bees: Brentford F.C. Who's Who 1920–2006. Yore Publications. p. 146. ISBN 978-0955294914.
- "Player Appearances". Archived from the original on 9 October 2011. Retrieved 7 November 2017.
- "Goalscorers". Archived from the original on 13 June 2011. Retrieved 7 November 2017.
- "Bill Slater". 11v11.com. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
- Glanville, Brian (20 December 2018). "Bill Slater obituary". The Guardian. Retrieved 20 December 2018.
- "Bill SLATER". FIFA. Retrieved 9 November 2009.
- "William Slater". Sports Reference. Retrieved 9 November 2009.
- Bill Slater – CricketArchive. Retrieved 26 December 2014.
- "BBC – Press Office – Barbara Slater appointed new Director of BBC Sport". www.bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 19 December 2018.
- "Bill Slater – 1927 – 2018". www.wolves.co.uk. Retrieved 19 December 2018.