Lawrie Leslie

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Lawrie Leslie
Personal information
Full nameLawrence Grant Leslie [1]
Date of birth(1935-03-17)17 March 1935
Place of birth Edinburgh, Scotland
Date of death 4 June 2019(2019-06-04) (aged 84)
Position(s) Goalkeeper
Youth career
Newtongrange Star
Senior career*
YearsTeamApps(Gls)
1956–1959 Hibernian 75 (0)
1959–1961 Airdrieonians 42 (0)
1961–1963 West Ham United 57 (0)
1963–1966 Stoke City 78 (0)
1966–1968 Millwall 67 (0)
1968–1969 Southend United 13 (0)
Total332(0)
National team
1960–1961 [2] Scottish League XI 3 (0)
1960–1961 Scotland 5 (0)
1961 [3] SFA trial v SFL 1 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Lawrence Grant Leslie (17 March 1935 – 4 June 2019) [4] was a Scottish professional footballer who played as a goalkeeper for Hibernian, Airdrie, West Ham United, Stoke City, Millwall and Southend United. Internationally, he represented Scotland on five occasions. [5]

Contents

Early life

Leslie was born in Edinburgh. As a boy, he was run over by a truck and advised by doctors that he may not regain the ability to walk. [6]

Playing career

In Scotland

Leslie began playing football with Hawkhill Amateurs. In the early 1950s, he turned semi-pro and joined Newtongrange Star. He played for his regimental side at Oswestry after joining the Royal Artillery in 1956. Lawrie signed pro forms with Hibernian following a trial that Army compatriot and Hibs player Jock Buchanan had suggested he apply for. After initially competing for his place with Tommy Younger, he became the club's first choice 'keeper and was in the Hibs side that reached the 1958 Scottish Cup Final, which they lost 1–0 to Clyde. [7] After playing 98 matches for the Easter Road side he moved to Airdrie in November 1959 for £4,475. Leslie spent two seasons at Broomfield Park and became club captain. [6] He was later inducted into the club's Hall of Fame. [8]

In England

Leslie moved to West Ham United in 1961 for £14,000. He won 'Hammer of the Year' at the end of his first season, becoming the first goalkeeper to earn the accolade. [7] The following season, Leslie suffered a broken leg in a game against Bolton Wanderers on 3 November 1962, but managed to regain fitness for the final four games of the campaign. After falling out of favour at West Ham at the start of the 1963–64 season - by this time Leslie's replacement, Jim Standen had established himself as the Hammers' first choice goalkeeper-, he requested a transfer. [6]

After 61 league and cup appearances for the east London club, [9] Leslie joined Stoke City for a fee of £14,000 in October 1963 and in his first season helped the club to reach the League Cup Final. [5] Leslie played in the first leg of the final at Stoke's Victoria Ground, a 1–1 draw, but he was injured for the decisive second leg. Reserve 'keeper Bobby Irvine stepped in and Stoke lost the game 3–2. [5] In the 1964–65 season, Leslie made the number one spot his own as the missed just two matches out of 50. [5] He lost his first choice status in 1965–66 due to the emergence of John Farmer and he left in the summer of 1966 for Millwall. [5] He spent two seasons at The Den before finishing his career with Southend United. [1]

International

Leslie won five caps for the Scottish national team while with Airdrie, all during the 1960–61 season. [10] His international debut came on 22 October 1960, against Wales; Scotland lost the game 2–0, but his performance earned many plaudits. He was due to play for Scotland in the infamous 9–3 defeat by England at Wembley, but he was injured one week beforehand and Frank Haffey was selected instead. [7]

Later life

After his retirement from playing, Leslie coached at Southend and went on to a role as trainer-coach at Millwall. He was later involved in coaching schools football. [6] [7]

Leslie died in June 2019, aged 84. [11]

Career statistics

Source: [12]

ClubSeasonDivisionLeagueFA CupLeague CupTotal
AppsGoalsAppsGoalsAppsGoalsAppsGoals
Hibernian 1956–57 Scottish First Division 1200000120
1957–58 Scottish First Division3307060460
1958–59 Scottish First Division3004060400
Total750110120980
Airdrieonians 1959–60 Scottish First Division1100000110
1960–61 Scottish First Division3100000310
Total4200000420
West Ham United 1961–62 First Division 3701010390
1962–63 First Division2000020220
Total5701030610
Stoke City 1963–64 First Division2505050350
1964–65 First Division4103040480
1965–66 First Division1200020140
Total78080110970
Millwall 1966–67 Second Division 4202020460
1967–68 Second Division2501020280
Total6703040740
Southend United 1968–69 Fourth Division 1300020150
Career Total33202303003850

International

Source: [13]

National teamYearAppsGoals
Scotland 196020
196130
Total50

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References

  1. 1 2 "Lawrie Leslie". Barry Hugman's Footballers. Retrieved 21 May 2017.
  2. [ SFL player Lawrence Grant Leslie, London Hearts Supporters Club
  3. Ronnie McDevitt (2016). Scotland in the 60s: The Definitive Account of the Scottish National Football Side During the 1960s. Pitch Publishing. ISBN   9781785312458.
  4. "Lawrie Leslie: Former Millwall goalkeeper passes away aged 84". Millwall FC. 5 June 2019. Retrieved 5 June 2019.
  5. 1 2 3 4 5 Matthews, Tony (1994). The Encyclopaedia of Stoke City. Lion Press. ISBN   0-9524151-0-0.
  6. 1 2 3 4 Hogg, Tony (2005). Who's Who of West Ham United. Profile Sports Media. p. 126. ISBN   1-903135-50-8.
  7. 1 2 3 4 Vallance, Matt (15 April 2011). "Luckiest 'unlucky' goalkeeper who missed Scotland's 9–3 humiliation". The Scotsman . Retrieved 4 July 2018.
  8. "Hall of Fame". Airdrieonians F.C. Retrieved 4 July 2018.
  9. "Lawrie Leslie". westhamstats.info. Retrieved 10 May 2018.
  10. Lamming, Douglas (1987). A Scottish Soccer Internationalists Who's Who, 1872–1986 (Hardback). Hutton Press. ISBN   0-907033-47-4.
  11. "Lawrie Leslie". Airdrieonians FC. 5 June 2019. Retrieved 5 June 2019.
  12. Lawrie Leslie at the English National Football Archive (subscription required)
  13. Leslie, Lawrie at National-Football-Teams.com