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Alan Hinton

Alan Hinton
Seattle Sounders
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Alan Thomas Hinton (born 6 October 1942 in Wednesbury) is an English former footballer who played at the top level of English football from 1961-1975.[1] He famously wore white football boots.

Career

Hinton started his career in the youth ranks at Wolverhampton Wanderers in October 1959, before making his senior debut on 7 January 1961 in a 1–1 draw with Huddersfield Town in the FA Cup.

He came into the Wolves team during the 1961-62 season when he managed 16 appearances, scoring 5 times. The following season he was a first choice in the wide left position, from where he netted 19 times, making him their leading goalscorer. He also won a call-up to the England team during this season when he played against France on 3 October 1962 in a European Championship qualifier at Hillsborough.

His goalscoring ability soon attracted interest from other clubs and he signed for Nottingham Forest in January 1964. He appeared 112 times for Forest, scoring 24 times during 4 seasons at the City Ground. His time with Forest also saw him earn two further England caps, in a 2–2 draw with Belgium - in which he scored - and a 2–1 win over Wales, both in 1964.

He was then signed by Brian Clough for Derby County (local rivals of Forest) in September 1967 for £30,000. He spent eight seasons with the Rams, which coincided with the golden period in the club's history, winning promotion to the top flight as Second Division champions in 1968-69 and then winning the league championship in both 1971-72 and 1974-75. He departed in 1975 after 253 appearances and 63 goals for Derby. Whilst at Derby he was universally and affectionately known, amongst the fans by his nickname `Gladys` which stemmed from his aforementioned white boots and curly blonde perm, along with his elegant and non-aggressive playing style.

After a brief stint as player-manager of non-league Borrowash Victoria, he relocated to North America in 1976. Hinton first played for the Dallas Tornado for a season, before moving to the Vancouver Whitecaps, where he ended his playing career and moved into coaching. Having settled in North America, Hinton managed only Canadian and American teams, his biggest successes were with the Seattle Sounders (66 games, 45 wins) and later on the Tacoma Stars (87 games, 69 wins).

Hinton also spent a number of years coaching youth soccer in the Puget Sound area of Washington state and became known as "Mr. Soccer" in the area.[2] He coached the U13-18 Crossfire Sounders boys team (now the Crossfire Premier Soccer Club, including boys and girls teams) from 1992-1997.[3]

Hinton was involved in efforts to bring the 1994 FIFA World Cup to the U.S., and when the Seattle Sounders name was revived for a new American Professional Soccer League club in 1994, Hinton became club President and appointed himself as coach.[4]

After retiring from coaching, Hinton turned to a career in real estate, while remaining involved in youth soccer. He now works as a local broadcast analyst for Seattle Sounders. His nephew, Craig, is also a professional footballer.

References

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