Thursday, 9 September 2010

136 Malcolm Brown

Position : Right back

Played : 1988-89 ; 1991-92

Appearances : (first spell) 11 (second spell) 18

Goals : (first spell) 0 (second spell) 1

Malcolm was signed from Huddersfield in February 1989 and made his debut at home to Hereford. He started at Bury but never established himself there and moved on to Leeds Road in 1977 after 11 appearances. There he became a hero with his raids from right back and deadly crossing and hardly missed a game for them putting in a run of four consecutive ever-present seasons from 1979-80 to 1982-3 which included two promotions. That earned him a £100,000 move to Newcastle but ironically he snapped his Achilles in pre-season and didn’t make his debut for them until the following season. After 39 appearances in the old First Division under Jack Charlton the new manager discarded him and he returned to Huddersfield. He made another 96 appearances for them but gradually fell out of favour after playing in their infamous 10-1 defeat at Manchester City. We signed him on a free, aged 32 .

Malcolm was tall for a full back, good going forward but not so sound defensively. In any case he’d hardly got his feet under the table before Bergara whisked him away to Stockport. He went up with them in 1990-91 and my Stockport-supporting colleague at work reckoned he was the key man. However, Bergara didn’t think he could cut it in a higher league at 34 and , in what became a familiar story, Dave Sutton obligingly took him off their hands. Malcolm was clearly reluctant to return and when he played he seemed to be in a bit of a sulk , gesturing at fans at Scarborough who were fairly criticising him for failing to beat a man half his size in the air. There were flashes of his old form like the cross for Andy Flounders’ winner at home to Scunthorpe and his goal, away at Maidstone, was a free-kick rocket but generally he was poor. He signed off with a disastrously bad performance in the crucial end of season game at home to Burnley which we needed to win for a play off place. Instead we lost 4-1 and Malcolm was at fault for at least two of them. (I should add that as a result of us losing that game I made a decision which ultimately led to me meeting my wife so I can perhaps forgive Malcolm for that one).

Malcolm retired after that game and is now a driving instructor in Walkden.

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