|Full name||Roger Patrick Hunt|
|Date of birth||17 March 1943|
|Place of birth||Swindon, England|
|Height||5 ft 7 in (1.70 m)|
|Playing position||Inside forward|
|1967||→ Los Angeles Wolves||10||(4)|
|1973||→ Doncaster Rovers (loan)||9||(1)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
Roger Patrick "Ernie" Hunt (born 17 March 1943) is an English former footballer who played in the Football League for Swindon Town, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Everton, Coventry City, Doncaster Rovers and Bristol City, and for the Los Angeles Wolves in the United Soccer Association. At international level, he was capped three times for the England under-23 team. He was known as "Ernie" – a contraction of Ernest, his father's name – to avoid confusion with Liverpool and England striker Roger Hunt.
Born in Swindon, Hunt was working for British Rail when he was signed as an amateur by Swindon Town in 1957. He progressed through their youth ranks, made his debut on 15 September 1959 in a 3–0 defeat in the Third Division at Grimsby Town, which made him Swindon's youngest ever first-team player, aged 16 years 182 days, a record which stood until 1980, and signed professional forms in March 1960.
He finished as the club's top goalscorer for four consecutive seasons, and helped them win promotion to the Second Division in 1963. Hunt made his debut for the England under-23 team on 2 June 1963 in a 1–0 defeat to their Romanian counterparts, the first of three caps he won at that level. Swindon were relegated at the end of the 1964–65 campaign, and Hunt left to join Wolverhampton Wanderers in September 1965, for a fee of £40,000, which was at the time Swindon's record transfer receipt. In all competitions, he scored 88 goals from 237 games for Swindon.
Hunt was Wolves' leading scorer with 20 goals as they won promotion to the First Division in 1966–67, and was part of the Wolves squad who, playing as the Los Angeles Wolves, won the 1967 United Soccer Association title. However, he made just six outings in the top flight for Wolves before the club sold him to Everton for £80,000 in September 1967. His time at Goodison Park was short-lived as he failed to settle, making only 12 appearances before a £65,000 transfer to Coventry City in March 1968, just six months after arriving.
The striker was a fans' favourite during his five-year spell at Coventry and scored one of the most famous goals in English football history in October 1970, ironically against Everton. Awarded a free kick just outside the penalty area, Willie Carr gripped the ball between his heels and flicked it up for Hunt to volley home. The match was televised on BBC's Match of the Day, so the goal gained huge fame, but the move was outlawed at the end of the season.
He spent a loan spell at Doncaster Rovers before leaving Coventry to join Bristol City, where he ended his league career in the 1973–74 season. He subsequently served a number of non-League clubs.
Life after football
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- "Old Gold". The Wolves Site. Archived from the original on 24 September 2008. Retrieved 29 December 2009.
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- Courtney, Barrie (27 March 2004). "England – U-23 International Results- Details". RSSSF. Retrieved 29 December 2009.[permanent dead link]
- "Ernie Hunt Factfile". Swindon Advertiser. 3 January 2001. Retrieved 29 December 2009.[permanent dead link]
- "North American Soccer League Rosters Los Angeles Wolves". NASL Jerseys. Dave Morrison. Retrieved 29 December 2009.
- Holroyd, Steve. "The Year in American Soccer – 1967". The American Soccer History Archives. Dave Litterer. Retrieved 29 December 2009.
- "The Mad, Mad World of Ernie Hunt". Wolves Heroes. 28 March 2009. Retrieved 29 December 2009.
- Brown, Jim (17 January 2008). "Top flight dazzlers: The greatest Coventry City player ever". Coventry Telegraph. Archived from the original on 13 March 2012. Retrieved 29 December 2009.
- Green, Geoffrey (5 October 1970). "Carr's sleight of foot baffles league champions". The Times. p. 13.
It was a real circus trick, almost a whodunit, which had the whole company on their feet cheering their heads off which the sheer audacity and unexpectedness of it all.
- Brown, Jim (6 October 2001). "Hunt conjures moment of magic destined for immortality" (reprint). The Times. NewsBank. Retrieved 29 December 2009.
- Edbrooke, David (1 February 2008). "The 25 best free-kicks of all-time". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 29 December 2009.
- "Ernie Hunt Coventry City FC". Football Heroes. Sporting Heroes Collections. Retrieved 29 December 2009.
- "Coventry City | Club | History | History | Hall of Fame". 2012-07-22. Archived from the original on 22 July 2012. Retrieved 2015-08-22.
- Westcott, Chris (2004). Joker in the pack : the Ernie Hunt story. Stroud: Tempus. ISBN 0-7524-3271-0.