Mark Jones (footballer, born 1933)
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Jones in 1956
|Date of birth||15 June 1933|
|Place of birth||Wombwell, West Riding of Yorkshire, England|
|Date of death||6 February 1958(aged 24)|
|Place of death||Munich, Bavaria, West Germany|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only|
Mark Jones (15 June 1933 – 6 February 1958) was an English footballer and one of eight Manchester United players to lose their lives in the Munich air disaster. Jones was born in Wombwell, near Barnsley, West Riding of Yorkshire in 1933, the third of seven children born to miner Amos Jones (1894–1968) and his wife Lucy (1896–1957). He was the club's first-choice centre-half for much of the 1950s and collected two League Championship winner's medals.
Jones signed for Manchester United as an apprentice on leaving school in 1948, and also worked an apprentice bricklayer for a while afterwards, and made his first two senior appearances for United in the 1950–51 season, aged 17, and by the time of United's title glory in 1955–56 he was a regular first team player, although he often found himself out of the team in favour of Jackie Blanchflower (who was originally a wing-half or an inside-forward), having previously been understudy to the veteran Allenby Chilton. By the time United won the league title in 1956, he was a regular member of the first team, and collected another league title medal the following year.
He missed the 1957 FA Cup Final defeat to Aston Villa because of an eye injury, although he did collect a second successive league title medal that season and helped United reach the semi-finals of the European Cup. He played a total of 120 first team games for United (103 of them in the league), and scored once. He was selected in an England senior squad once, but did not take to the field. Many observers believe that he would have been capped by England had he not died at Munich. He came close to international action, having been selected on the substitutes' bench, but his hopes of a breakthrough were not helped by the fact that his career coincided with that of Billy Wright. He was seen by many observers as a likely successor to Wright in the centre of the England defence.
He was survived by his wife, June, and their two-year-old son, Gary. His daughter, Lynne, was born four months after the Munich air disaster, and June later remarried to a man called Herbert Barker. She died in February 2007, and was buried next to her first husband just weeks before the 49th anniversary of his death. His son Gary had a trial with Manchester United in the early 1970s but was not taken on by the club.
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- "50 YEARS ON - Mark Jones - MUST - the independent Manchester United supporters' trust". Joinmust.org. Retrieved 8 February 2011.
- "Mark Jones". StretfordEnd.co.uk. Andrew Endlar. Retrieved 28 February 2016.