José Gallego (footballer, born 1923)

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José Gallego
Personal information
Full name José Augustin Gallego[1]
Date of birth (1923-04-08)8 April 1923
Place of birth Errenteria, Spain
Date of death 17 September 2006(2006-09-17) (aged 83)
Place of death Cambridge, England[1]
Height 5 ft 7 in (1.70 m)
Playing position Outside forward
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1942–1946 Cambridge City
1947–1948 Brentford 6 (0)
1948–1950 Southampton 1 (0)
1950–1952 Colchester United 4 (0)
1952–1957 Cambridge United
1957–19?? Biggleswade Town
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

José Augustin Gallego (8 April 1923 – 17 September 2006) was a Spanish footballer who played as an outside forward for various clubs in the English Football League in the 1940s and 1950s.

Football career[edit]

Gallego was born in Errenteria in the Basque Country in Spain. His father was a Spanish government worker who fled to England as a refugee in 1937 during the Spanish Civil War.[2] Gallego arrived in England as a 14-year-old along with his three sisters and his younger brother, Antonio,[3] who was also to have a short career as a professional footballer, as a goalkeeper with Norwich City.[4]

The family settled in Cambridge where José first played football with Cambridge City in 1942. In 1945, he was joined by Antonio in the Cambridge City side, now coached by former West Ham United, Southampton and England forward Vic Watson and in 1946 the team won the East Anglian Cup.[2]

In January 1947, Gallego moved to Brentford of the Football League Second Division, where he stayed for a season and a half, making six league appearances.[5]

In the summer of 1948, he moved to fellow Second Division club, Southampton. Although he scored on his debut for the reserve team, he made only one first-team appearance when he replaced the injured Wilf Grant at outside-left in a 3–0 defeat at Barnsley on 2 October 1948. Gallego was the seventh player that season to have worn the No. 11 shirt, before Grant returned for the next match.[6] Although his debut was described as "most promising" and "deserving another try", Gallego suffered from a cracked ankle after being given a "hard time" by the Barnsley full-back and decided to quit full-time professional football.[2]

Southampton tried to sell him to Exeter City in the summer of 1950, but Gallego refused and instead joined Colchester United along with his Southampton team–mate Bill Rochford.[2] Colchester were embarking on their first season in the Football League, but Gallego only made four appearances before dropping down to non-league football.[7]

He then enjoyed six seasons of part-time football back at Cambridge, this time with Cambridge United[3] and played minor league football until after his 50th birthday.[2]

Career outside football[edit]

Gallego worked for thirty years for the Gas Board in Cambridge as a meter inspector and continued to play golf until well after his 80th birthday.[2]

Gallego died on 17 September 2006 at the age of 83.[8]


  1. ^ a b Barry Hugman's Footballers - Jose Gallego
  2. ^ a b c d e f Holley, Duncan; Chalk, Gary (2003). In That Number – A post-war chronicle of Southampton FC. Hagiology Publishing. p. 515. ISBN 0-9534474-3-X. 
  3. ^ a b Holley, Duncan; Chalk, Gary (1992). The Alphabet of the Saints. ACL & Polar Publishing. pp. 135–136. ISBN 0-9514862-3-3. 
  4. ^ "Norwich City player statistics: 1946/47 - 2009/10". Retrieved 11 September 2010. 
  5. ^ "Brentford player statistics: 1946/47 - 2009/10". Retrieved 11 September 2010. 
  6. ^ In That Number. p. 10. 
  7. ^ "Colchester United player statistics: 1946/47 - 2009/10". Retrieved 11 September 2010. 
  8. ^ "Joe Gallego R.I.P.". Cambridge United FC. 25 September 2006. Retrieved 26 June 2012. [dead link]