Jim Holton

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Jim Holton
Personal information
Full name James Alan Holton
Date of birth (1951-04-11)11 April 1951
Place of birth Lesmahagow, Scotland
Date of death 4 October 1993(1993-10-04) (aged 42)
Height 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Playing position Centre-back
Youth career
1968–1971 West Bromwich Albion
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1971–1972 Shrewsbury Town 67 (4)
1972–1976 Manchester United 63 (5)
1976 Miami Toros 16 (1)
1976–1977 Sunderland 15 (0)
1977–1981 Coventry City 91 (0)
1980 Detroit Express 21 (3)
1981–1982 Sheffield Wednesday 0 (0)
National team
1973–1974 Scotland 15 (2)

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

James Alan "Jim" Holton (11 April 1951 – 4 October 1993) was a Scottish football player.

Born in Lesmahagow, South Lanarkshire, and trained with Celtic, Holton began his playing career with West Bromwich Albion in 1968, but left three years later without having played a first-team game. He spent a season at Shrewsbury Town before making the big move to Manchester United. At United he was a favourite among fans who taunted opponents with the chant: Six foot two[sic], eyes of blue, Big Jim Holton's after you.[1] Despite two leg breaks during that time, he played helpfully in their Second Division championship winning side in 1975 but was sold to Sunderland a year later.[1]

In 1976, he played for the Miami Toros of the North American Soccer League (NASL). He returned to the NASL with the Detroit Express in 1980.[2] He finished his career with Coventry City, enjoying a four-year spell at the club before injury brought his career to an end at the age of 30 at the end of the 1980-1981 season.

Holton played in all three initial group games for Scotland in the 1974 World Cup competition in Germany, in which the team did not lose, winning 2-0 against Zaire and drawing twice, including a memorable 0-0 draw with then reigning champions Brazil, yet still failing to progress to the second round due to goal difference. Scotland's third game resulted in a 1-1 draw with Yugoslavia.

Holton stayed in Coventry after retiring from professional football, working as a pub landlord. He died on 4 October 1993, aged 42, after suffering a heart attack at the wheel of his car.


  1. ^ a b "Big characters brought to mind with memories of sporting glory. Footballing greats grace county history". Shropshire Star. 24 July 2013. p. 27. Article by Toby Neal, who included Holton as a onetime Shrewsbury Town player.
  2. ^ Jim Holton at North American Soccer League Players

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