R.I.P. Johnny Haynes

football’s first superstar.

Johnny Haynes

Sad news that ex-England and Fulham captain Johnny Haynes died last night following a car crash in Scotland on Monday.

One of the greatest midfield passers, he paved the way for the for today’s “superstars” that aren’t good enough to lace his boots.

Forget David Beckham or Glenn Hoddle. Johnny Haynes was the best passer of the ball the game has ever seen. Jimmy Greaves

The first player to receive £100 a week after the maximum wage was abolished in 1961, he was also one of the first to get a sponsored car and to be used in advertising – the original Brylcreem Boy. All while showing loyalty to his club Fulham who he stayed with for the 18 years and 594 games of his professional career.

His dedication, skill, professionalism, grace and charm – both in his playing days and in retirement – serve as a poignant reminder to many of today’s footballers about what true greatness really means. Fulham Supporters Trust spokesman Tom Greatrex

He could have gone to bigger clubs, Spurs & AC Milan wanted him – there were few who could have added to Bill Nicholson’s Spurs side of the 60s but he was certainly one. But no he stuck by the club through relegation then back into the top flight the kind of loyalty we’ll probably never see from a star player ever again.

How ironic that he should see out his last years living in Scotland who suffered their darkest day on a football park in 1961 when losing 9-3 to an England side captained by Haynes. A side that but for the Munich air disaster that wiped out the Man Utd team could have won the World Cup earlier than 1966.

Tommy Trinder then Fulham chairman famously said straight away when talk of the maximum wage being stopped that Haynes would be getting ?100 a week cause he knew from the start what a talent he had at his club. As shown by this story Jimmy Greaves told in the Daily Telegraph only a couple of weeks back.

When Fulham chairman Tommy Trinder was appearing in a show at Southsea, Field Marshal Montgomery, the president of Portsmouth, heard he was in town and invited Tommy to be his guest at Fratton Park. After the game, comedian and war hero were listening to the other results on the radio in the boardroom when the presenter announced that Fulham had won 2-0, both goals being scored by the teenage Johnny Haynes.

‘That Haynes boy, he’s going to be a great player,’ enthused Tommy, glowing with paternal pride. ‘He has a great football brain and is an excellent passer of the ball. Mark my words, sir, Johnny Haynes will captain England one day. And I can say that although he’s only 18 years of age.’ Viscount Montgomery listened to Tommy’s oration with mounting severity. ‘Eighteen? What about his National Service?’ Quick as a flash, Tommy replied, ‘Ah, that’s the only sad thing about the lad – he’s a cripple.’ Jimmy Greaves

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Required fields *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.