Eric Houghton

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Eric Houghton
Personal information
Full name William Eric Houghton
Date of birth (1910-06-29)29 June 1910
Place of birth Billingborough, Lincolnshire, England
Date of death 1 May 1996(1996-05-01) (aged 85)
Place of death Birmingham, England[1]
Playing position Winger
Youth career
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1927–1946 Aston Villa 361 (160)
1946–1949 Notts County 55 (10)
National team
1930–1932 England 7 (5)
Teams managed
1949–1953 Notts County
1953–1958 Aston Villa

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

William Eric Houghton (29 June 1910 – 1 May 1996) was an English footballer and manager.

Eric Houghton was born in Billingborough, Lincolnshire and educated at Donington Grammar School. He signed for Aston Villa as a seventeen-year-old and played in the Villa side for two decades, scoring 170 goals in 392 games.[2] (The total including wartime matches was over 200 goals.) He also won 7 caps for England. His formidable and powerful shot was regarded as the hardest shot of his era.[1] Houghton converted 58 spot kicks and also scored direct from about 30 free-kicks.

He finished his playing career at Notts County.

After managing Notts County, he went on to become Aston Villa manager, guiding Villa to a record seventh FA Cup triumph in 1957. He later returned to Villa as a director, the only person to do this at the club. He had 4 children. Often referred to as Mr Aston Villa in recognition of his long standing service and contribution to the club.

He also played seven first-class matches as a right-handed batsman and a right-arm bowler for Warwickshire County Cricket Club (1946–1947) and also minor counties cricket for Lincolnshire County Cricket Club. He also played club cricket for Sleaford, Aston Unity and Olton Cricket Clubs.

His son Neil chaired Warwickshire County Cricket Club (2003-2011) and his great-nephew Chris Woods was a successful international footballer.

He died in Sutton Coldfield on 1 May 1996, aged 85.


  1. ^ a b Ponting, Ivan (3 May 1996). "Obituary: Eric Houghton". The Independent. Retrieved 3 March 2013. 
  2. ^ "Set Piece Legend". Aston Villa Football Club. Retrieved 3 March 2013. 

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