George Poyser

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George Poyser
Personal information
Full nameGeorge Henry Poyser [1]
Date of birth(1910-02-06)6 February 1910 [1]
Place of birth Stanton Hill, England [1]
Date of death 30 January 1995(1995-01-30) (aged 84) [1]
Place of death Skegby, England [1]
Position(s) Defender
Youth career
1925–1927 Teversal Colliery
1927–1928 Stanton Hill Victoria
Senior career*
1928–1929 Wolverhampton Wanderers 0 (0)
1929–1930 Stourbridge
1930–1931 Mansfield Town
1931–1934 Port Vale 72 (0)
1934–1946 Brentford 149 (0)
1946–1947 Plymouth Argyle 3 (0)
Teams managed
1953–1957 Notts County
1963–1965 Manchester City
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

George Henry Poyser (6 February 1910 – 30 January 1995) was an English football player and manager.


A defender, he enjoyed a lengthy playing career, the tail end of which was interrupted by World War II. He played for Wolverhampton Wanderers, Stourbridge, Mansfield Town, Port Vale, Brentford, and Plymouth Argyle. He helped Brentford to win the Second Division title in 1934–35.

He became a coach and manager after the war, taking charge of Dover, Notts County and Manchester City. He took County into the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, though he was better equipped as a scout than as a manager.

Playing career

Poyser played as a defender, and was a strong left-back. [1] Playing for Teversal Colliery, he had an unsuccessful trial at Mansfield Town, before moving on to Stanton Hill Victoria. [1] He enjoyed spells at Wolverhampton Wanderers and Stourbridge, [2] before signing with Mansfield Town. [3] He was part of the Mansfield team when they were elected to the Football League in 1931. [4]

In May 1931, he joined Port Vale of the Second Division. [1] His debut came on 2 January 1932, in a 2–0 win over Plymouth Argyle at The Old Recreation Ground. [1] However, he totalled just six appearances for the "Valiants" in the 1931–32 campaign. [1] He featured 28 times in the 1932–33 season, before establishing himself in the first team with 39 appearances in the 1933–34 campaign. [1] He made 72 league appearances for Port Vale. [3]

In June 1934 he transferred to Brentford for a fee of £1,550, a club record. [5] In his first season at Brentford, the club won the Second Division championship. The "Bees" finished fifth in the First Division in 1935–36, sixth in 1936–37 and 1937–38, and then 18th in 1938–39. He remained at Griffin Park for a decade, making 157 appearances, though like many players of his era, the Second World War shortened his career, though he represented Brentford in the non-competitive wartime competitions. [6]

The 36-year-old Poyser joined Plymouth Argyle for a £3,500 fee late in the 1945–46 season, [5] making three Football League South appearances and a further three Second Division appearances. [7] He left Home Park at the end of the 1946–47 season. [7]

Management career

Poyser first turned to management with Dover. He then returned to his old professional clubs in a coaching capacity, becoming the assistant trainer at Brentford and a coach at Wolverhampton Wanderers. [5]

His management career gained more recognition at Notts County, whom he managed between October 1953 and January 1957, [8] reaching the FA Cup quarter-finals in 1955. Former Notts County winger Gordon Wills regards Poyser as the best manager he played for. [9] The "Magpies" struggled in the lower half of the Second Division during his four seasons at Meadow Lane, though they did reach seventh in the 1954–55 season.

In January 1957 Poyser joined Manchester City as assistant to Les McDowall, [8] with a reputation for being a talented scout. [10] Manchester City were relegated to the Second Division in 1963, and McDowall left the club. On 12 July 1963, Poyser was appointed as his replacement. [11] He made three key signings in Derek Kevan, Jimmy Murray, and Johnny Crossan, whilst promoting home-grown talent in Alan Oakes and Glyn Pardoe – both of whom went on to build long careers at the club. In his first season, the club reached the League Cup semi-finals, but were well short of promotion in the league, finishing sixth. [10] His second season proved disappointing, and in January 1965 the club reached a low point with their lowest ever league attendance of 8,015 against Swindon Town. [11] Poyser himself was not at the stadium, as he had elected to perform a scouting mission instead. [10] At Easter Poyser was sacked, and the club finished the season in their then lowest ever position of 11th in the Second Division. [10] His replacement, Joe Mercer, went on to great success at Maine Road.


Playing statistics

ClubSeasonDivisionLeagueFA CupTotal
Wolverhampton Wanderers 1928–29 [12] Second Division 000000
Port Vale 1931–32 [12] Second Division600060
1932–33 [12] 28000280
1933–34 [12] 38010390
Brentford 1934–35 [13] Second Division41010420
1935–36 [13] First Division 28010290
1936–37 [13] 31020330
1937–38 [13] 16000160
1938–39 [13] 33010340
1945–46 [13] 3030
Plymouth Argyle 1946–47 [7] Second Division300030
Career total2240902330

Managerial statistics

Managerial record by team and tenure
Notts County 22 October 19537 January 1957149533165035.6
Manchester City 12 July 196313 April 196589381734042.7




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  10. 1 2 3 4 "Profile". Retrieved 4 November 2012.
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  14. Haynes, Graham (1998). A-Z Of Bees: Brentford Encyclopaedia. Yore Publications. p. 84. ISBN   1-874427-57-7.
  15. "Prizes shared at last night's Player of the Year Awards" . Retrieved 7 May 2018.