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Sport. Football. pic: circa 1957. Gerry Hitchens, Aston Villa centre forward.
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Jan 10, Richard Newbold rated it it was amazing. From time to time, some of our more thoughtful football writers run the rule over the often troubled, infrequent export of British players to ply their trade in the Italian Serie A, not unreasonably concluding that the reluctance of our stars to leave the well-paid comfort zone of the Premier League might impact on England's abysmal record in international competition.
The articles rightly mention the incomparable John Charles as the greatest success, and give honourable mentions to the clutch w From time to time, some of our more thoughtful football writers run the rule over the often troubled, infrequent export of British players to ply their trade in the Italian Serie A, not unreasonably concluding that the reluctance of our stars to leave the well-paid comfort zone of the Premier League might impact on England's abysmal record in international competition.
The articles rightly mention the incomparable John Charles as the greatest success, and give honourable mentions to the clutch who went when English teams were banned from European competition - Liam Brady, David Platt etc Rarely if ever mention of Gerry Hitchens, after Charles, the only one of those early pioneers whose transplant stuck - and a damned fine player to boot. This biography, though concentrating on the facts, figures and anecdotes rather than a fluid writing style, is an excellent telling of Gerry's life story, from the early days as a coal miner and semi-pro in the West Midlands, his rise to prominence with the Villa and a far too brief England career discarded by Alf Ramsey who wouldn't play someone from an overseas club , his eight years of service for Inter, Torino and others, before a return to England and his tragically early death from an embolism induced heart attack when playing football at the age of Though my personal memories of Gerry are very sketchy, I remember his international debut, when the pre-Ramsay cavalier England team thrashed Mexico at Wembley, Gerry scoring within 90 seconds within an amazing cross-cum-shot from a trademark left wing rampaging run which he combined with his goal-sniffing striking role to devastating effect - I suppose a little like the young Wayne Rooney.
Fortunately, Gerry's son Marcus has done his father proud by uploading to You Tube some charming home movies Gerry was a keen cine cameraman and an incredible Brian Glanville Documentary "European Centre Forward" which captures the amazing experience of Italian football in the s.
Top British and Irish Players To Play In Serie A | Forza Italian Football - Part 9
But back to the book - recommended - Great book - great player. There are no discussion topics on this book yet. About Simon Goodyear. Simon Goodyear. Books by Simon Goodyear.
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