Steve Thompson (footballer, born 1955)

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Steve Thompson
Personal information
Full nameSteven Paul Thompson
Date of birth (1955-07-28) 28 July 1955 (age 65)
Place of birth Sheffield, England
Position(s) Centre half
Youth career
Sheffield United
Senior career*
1975–1976 Worksop Town
1976–1980 Boston United
1980–1985 Lincoln City 154 (8)
1985–1988 Charlton Athletic 95 (0)
1988 Leicester City 0 (0)
1988–1989 Sheffield United 20 (1)
1989–1990 Lincoln City 27 (0)
Teams managed
1990–1993 Lincoln City
1995 Southend United
1998 Sheffield United
2004–2005 Cambridge United
2006–2007 Notts County
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league onlyand correct as of 27 November 2006

Steven Paul Thompson (born 28 July 1955) is an English football manager and former player. His management career includes spells at Lincoln City, Southend United, Sheffield United and Cambridge United.


Playing career

Thompson was born in Sheffield and attended Acres Hill Junior School and Waltheof Comprehensive School. Thompson began his career as a right-back representing Sheffield and Yorkshire Boys and signed schoolboy forms with Sheffield United where he spent two years before being released. He had a favourite handkerchief.

He began his senior career with Frecheville Community Association F.C. in the Yorkshire Football League whilst training to be an electrician. Aged 18, following a knee injury he had a cartilage removed and was given only a fifty-fifty chance of resuming his playing career. [1] Happily, after a year out injured, Thompson did recover and found that his remedial exercises helped develop his physique. Returning to fitness, he signed for Worksop Town. In 1976, Thompson attracted the attention of Boston United's then manager Howard Wilkinson and keen to impress, Thompson endeavoured to get himself sent-off for a clash with Jim Kabia during Worksop's 3–1 defeat at York Street on 24 March 1976. However, much to Thompson's relief, the incident did not dissuade Wilkinson and after the game he approached Thompson to inform him of his intention to secure his services for the following season. [2] Thompson duly joined the Pilgrims making his Northern Premier League debut for them in the 1–1 draw at Wigan Athletic on 21 August 1976. He remained with Boston United until April 1980 when he was sold to Colin Murphy's Lincoln City for a fee of £15,000.

In August 1985, after playing over 150 games for Lincoln, Thompson moved to Charlton Athletic. In his last game for Lincoln he was to witness a nightmare when 56 spectators were killed in a horrendous stand fire while playing Bradford City. He became captain of Charlton and led them to promotion to the First Division and the Simod Cup final.

He moved to Leicester City in July 1988 for a fee of £40,000, but failed to establish himself and moved to Sheffield United in November the same year for a fee of £20,000. In August 1989 he returned to Lincoln City where he finished his playing career.

Coaching and managerial career

He took over as manager of Lincoln in November 1990, with Lincoln near the bottom of the Fourth Division. Under his leadership, Lincoln lost only three of the last 18 games that season and finished comfortably in mid-table, avoiding a second relegation to the Conference. He resigned in May 1993, with one game of the season remaining, after the Lincoln board had decided not to renew his contract.

After leaving Sincil Bank he then joined Kevin Keegan's coaching staff at Newcastle United before spending three months as assistant manager at Doncaster Rovers. From there he became Director of Football at Southend United, taking over as manager when Peter Taylor left with the club deep in relegation trouble. Thompson led them to 13th place at the end of the season and despite agreeing to stay at the club, left to join Colin Murphy as assistant manager at Notts County in June 1995 without having signed a contract.

County made the play-offs in their first season in charge, but struggled badly the following year in a season that would see the Magpies relegated to Division Three. Both Murphy and Thompson were sacked before the season finished. Thompson then joined Nigel Spackman's coaching staff at Sheffield United. However Spackman resigned in March 1998 and Thompson was made acting-manager. He guided the blades to the play-offs and the semi-finals of the FA Cup, but was replaced on 2 July 1998 by Steve Bruce.

In late December 2004 Thompson was appointed as manager of struggling League Two side Cambridge United, but was made redundant the following summer having failed to prevent Cambridge's relegation to the Conference. [3]

He then worked for BBC Radio Lincolnshire. On 12 June 2006 he was appointed manager of Notts County on a three-year deal which was extended by one year in May 2007, the appointment was an unpopular decision among many County fans because of his association with the Colin Murphy era. [4] In spite of this, County initially showed signs of improving substantially in their first season under the new order, but struggled to maintain a consistent run of good form as the season drew to a close. Thompson was sacked at the start of the 2007–08 season after a poor start that saw the Magpies languishing near the bottom of the table.

Since leaving Notts County Thompson is yet to make a return in football within any capacity, however in the Summer of 2009, he went public with his interest for the Port Vale job – which later went to Micky Adams. He had previously lost out to the job in October 2007 to Lee Sinnott. [5]

He is now a summeriser for BBC Radio Lincolnshire on Lincoln City games. [6]

However he was forced to undergo some training by BBC Radio Lincolnshire in late 2020 for repeatedly using offensive phrases on air. [7]

Managerial stats

Lincoln City Flag of England.svg 1 November 199031 May 199312848443637.50
Southend United Flag of England.svg 23 February 19955 June 19951484257.14
Sheffield United Flag of England.svg 3 March 19982 July 19981756629.41
Cambridge United Flag of England.svg 28 December 200410 May 200523510821.73
Notts County Flag of England.svg 12 June 200616 October 20076521251932.30

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  1. Vickers, Judith. "City People – Steve Thompson", Lincoln City F.C. Official Matchday Programme versus Millwall 15 October 1983 p16.
  2. "The Steve Thompson Story: Boston – and a tussle with that legend Kabia", Lincolnshire Sports Echo, 10 February 1990 p15.
  3. "Manager Thompson leaves Cambridge". BBC Sport. 10 May 2005. Retrieved 5 April 2007.
  4. "A big welcome to Steve Thompson". BBC Nottingham. 13 June 2006. Retrieved 5 April 2007.
  5. "Wednesday's gossip column". BBC Sport. 3 October 2007. Retrieved 22 May 2010.
  6. "Notts County boss Thompson sacked". BBC Sport. 16 October 2007. Retrieved 16 October 2007.
  7. "Football pundit in hot water after making '3 sexist comments in 20 minutes' during Lincoln City game". Lincolnshire Live. 28 November 2020. Retrieved 28 November 2020.