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Alan Hudson

Alan Anthony Hudson (born 21 June 1951 in Chelsea, London) is a former English footballer.

Hudson was one of the most naturally gifted midfielders of his generation, a skilful and natural playmaker with tremendous vision and comfortable using either foot, yet his career was marred by controversies and injury problems. World Cup-winning England captain Bobby Moore once said of him: "Alan Hudson could have conquered the world, but there was no guarantee he was going to conquer his temperament."

Born and brought up near the King's Road, Hudson was rejected by Fulham as a schoolboy before signing for Chelsea Juniors. Injury denied him the chance to become Chelsea's youngest ever player aged 16 and he eventually made his senior debut 9 months later on February 1, 1969 in a 5-0 loss against Southampton.

Hudson found himself in a Chelsea side noted for its flair and skill, complete with equally flamboyant footballers such as Peter Osgood and Charlie Cooke. It was during the 1969-70 season that he established himself as the team's playmaker, creating goals for Osgood and Ian Hutchinson, and enabling Chelsea to finish 3rd in the First Division.

He played in every match in Chelsea's run to the FA Cup final in 1970, but missed the final itself due to another injury when they beat Leeds United 2-1 in a replay at Old Trafford, having drawn 2-2 at Wembley. He did, however, play a major role in Chelsea's replayed European Cup Winners' Cup final win against Real Madrid in Athens a year later.

The debt burden caused by the building of the then new East Stand resulted in the sale of key players, and a spiral of decline began. Chelsea lost 2-1 to Stoke City in the 1972 League Cup final at Wembley, whilst a falling-out with manager Dave Sexton resulted in both Hudson and Osgood being placed on the transfer list in January 1974. Within a month, Hudson had joined Stoke City for £240,000, and his career with Chelsea was over at the age of 22.

Stoke manager Tony Waddington saw Hudson as the final piece of the jigsaw that would turn Stoke City into genuine championship challengers in 1975. Hudson played some of the best football of his career under Waddington's shrewd leadership as Stoke finished just four points away from eventual champions Derby County in his first season with the Potteries club.

Alan Hudson
Personal information
Full name Alan Anthony Hudson
Date of birth June 21, 1951 (1951-06-21) (age 56)
Place of birth    Chelsea, London, England
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current club N/A
Senior clubs1
Years Club App (Gls)*
1968-74
1974-76
1976-78
1979-83
1983
1983-84
1984-85
Chelsea
Stoke City
Arsenal
Seattle Sounders
Hércules CF
Chelsea
Stoke City
145 (10)
105 (9)
36 (0)
109 (2)
? (?)
0 (0)
39 (0)   
National team2
1975 England 2 (0)
1 Senior club appearances and goals
counted for the domestic league only and
correct as of 15th July 2006.
2 National team caps and goals correct
as of 15th July 2006.
* Appearances (Goals)

Owing to a ban from international football after refusing to tour with the England under-23 side, Hudson didn't make his England debut until 1975, when sparkling performances earned him two call ups by then England manager Don Revie. He starred in the team that beat World Champions West Germany 2-0 at Wembley, and then in the 5-0 destruction of Cyprus. However, injuries and clashes with Revie meant that those two caps were the only ones he earned.

Financial troubles at Stoke forced Hudson's sale to Arsenal in December 1976 for £200,000. He helped Arsenal reach the 1978 FA Cup Final, which they lost 1-0 to Ipswich Town, but differences with the Arsenal manager Terry Neill meant that he moved to the Seattle Sounders of the NASL for £100,000 at the age of 27. Hudson subsequently moved on to Hércules CF of Spain before returning to Chelsea, then in the Second Division, although illness and injury denied him the chance to play for them again. There was also a nostalgic return to Stoke, where he helped the club avoid relegation from the old First Division in the 1983-84 season.

Since his retirement, Hudson has suffered a series of setbacks. He had problems with alcoholism, was declared bankrupt and in 1997 sustained serious injuries in a car crash (spending two months in a coma), after which he was not expected to walk again, but managed to make a recovery.

His autobiography The Working Man's Ballet was a critical success and led to work as a columnist on the Stoke Evening Sentinel and The Sporting Life. A further book The Tinker and The Talisman was self-published in 2003. In 2004 Hudson appeared as himself in a cameo appearance in the British film The Football Factory.

In June 2006, Hudson joined Radio Napa in Cyprus, where he commentated on the FIFA World Cup in Germany.

Wiki Source

Comment

This is me Alan Hudson, just to let you know The Working Mans Ballet will be out very soon, updated version including horrific car accident...Cheers Alan

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