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Home: All Other Football Interests: Obituaries and Remembrances:
Mick Kennedy (Halifax, Huddersfield, Middlesbrough, Portsmouth, Bradford, Leicester, Luton, Stoke, Chesterfield, Wigan, Republic of Ireland)

 



Feversham Lens
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Feb 10, 2019, 9:23 AM

Posts: 3230
Location: York
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Mick Kennedy (Halifax, Huddersfield, Middlesbrough, Portsmouth, Bradford, Leicester, Luton, Stoke, Chesterfield, Wigan, Republic of Ireland) Can't Post or Reply Privately

Johnny Meynell, the Halifax Town/FC Halifax Town club historian, has reported the death of Mick Kennedy. Extremely sad news. Shocking, too, because Mick was only 57. As a schoolboy, I watched a young Mick, Salford-born, impress at Halifax Town. He developed quickly into a very useful midfielder. Kennedy, a product of Salford Boys' Club, got stuck in but he could pass the ball and possessed a handy long throw. It was rather upsetting - to say the least - when he joined (for £50,000) our loathed neighbours Huddersfield Town. I saw him play for the Terriers several times and again, for other clubs, later in his career, which encompassed 536 Football League games (1978-94, 29 goals). Very pleasing to see him do so well. Kennedy is part of Shay folklore because he was in the Fourth Division Halifax team that beat Malcolm Allison's First Division Manchester City (Joe Corrigan, Steve Daley and all) 1-0 in January 1980 in an FA Cup third round tie at The Shay. He also won two full caps (1986) for the Republic of Ireland. Rest in peace, Mick.

To lift a few highlights from the pen picture of Mick in Johnny's 2011 'Halifax Town, The Complete Record'...

Mick Kennedy was living proof of the old adage subscribed to by (manager) George Kirby that if you were good enough, you were old enough. Having taken over a club stranded at the foot of the Fourth Division, Kirby was quick to promote Kennedy to the first team, sending him on as a substitute for the game against Wimbledon in November 1978. But, having witnessed the maturity in such a young player, Kennedy thereafter started every game over the next season and a half, during which time he was never substituted, so important did Kirby consider him to the engine room of the side ... Kennedy, a player with a crack left foot and a long throw, developed a tigerish midfield partnership with Paul Hendrie during the 1979-80 season as the Shaymen enjoyed better days ... (at the end of his playing career) Kennedy returned to Clare, Ireland, where his parents originated, and has been involved coaching successful local side Lifford AFC.

According to Johnny, other transfer fees paid for Kennedy include £100,000 (Portsmouth), £275,000 (Bradford City) and £180,000 (Stoke City).

Kennedy in action for Halifax against Manchester City in 1980...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t1h1-gJFo6w


(This post was edited by Feversham Lens on Feb 10, 2019, 9:50 AM)


Feversham Lens
Chelsea Transfer Target


Feb 10, 2019, 7:49 PM

Posts: 3230
Location: York
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Post #2 of 4 (4450 views)
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Re: [Feversham Lens] Mick Kennedy (Halifax, Huddersfield, Middlesbrough, Portsmouth, Bradford, Leicester, Luton, Stoke, Chesterfield, Wigan, Republic of Ireland) [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

From Portsmouth's official website, portsmouthfc.co.uk...

Pompey are mourning the death of Mick Kennedy, who has passed away at the age of 57. A tough-tackling midfielder, he was a popular member of the side that secured promotion to the top-flight in 1987. By the time Mick arrived at Fratton Park at the age of 23, he had already racked up more than 200 league appearances for Halifax, Huddersfield and Middlesbrough. One of his earliest games for the former was in a 2-0 home victory over the Blues in February 1979.

When Alan Ball was appointed manager in the summer of 1984, he paid £100,000 to make Kennedy one of his first signings. He added much-needed aggression to the centre of the pitch and following two near-misses, finally helped Pompey return to Division One. The big question for fans was whether they could stay there, but the job was made harder when, against both his and Ball’s wishes, Mick was sold to Bradford for £250,000 midway through the campaign.

Kennedy’s final game for the Blues was certainly a memorable one, though, with Southampton beaten 2-0 at The Dell. But Pompey would win just two more league games that season and many supporters still point to the sale of Mick – who won two Republic of Ireland caps during his time at the club – as the reason for their relegation. He would later team up with Ball again at Stoke, also featuring for Leicester, Luton, Chesterfield and Wigan before hanging up his boots. Kennedy was honoured for his contribution to Pompey last year when he was inducted into the club’s Hall of Fame.

The thoughts of everyone at Portsmouth Football Club are with Mick’s family and friends at this sad time.


(This post was edited by Feversham Lens on Feb 10, 2019, 7:49 PM)


Feversham Lens
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Feb 12, 2019, 8:47 AM

Posts: 3230
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Re: [Feversham Lens] Mick Kennedy (Halifax, Huddersfield, Middlesbrough, Portsmouth, Bradford, Leicester, Luton, Stoke, Chesterfield, Wigan, Republic of Ireland) [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Excellent Portsmouth tribute to Mick Kennedy, a member of the club's Hall of Fame. It includes interviews with former Pompey team-mates...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ym0AQKc3Xms


oxpete
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Feb 13, 2019, 8:59 PM

Posts: 4430
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Re: [Feversham Lens] Mick Kennedy (Halifax, Huddersfield, Middlesbrough, Portsmouth, Bradford, Leicester, Luton, Stoke, Chesterfield, Wigan, Republic of Ireland) [In reply to] Can't Post or Reply Privately

Incredibly sad news to hear, and at the age of just 57.

To many Pompey fans my age, Mick Kennedy is and always will be their favourite player. He was the most committed and hard-working member of the amazing set of players put together by Alan Ball for the 1984-to-1987 years when we twice just missed out on promotion before finally going up in May 1987.

Although he was often portrayed as a hard-man, with continual run-ins with referees and the likes of Blackburn's Glenn Keeley, Millwall's John Fashanu and Wimbledon's Vinnie Jones (and I can also remember seeing he sent-off for fighting against QPR... in a pre-season friendly!), he was also a highly underrated skillful midfielder. I was at the Brighton match featured in the Hall Of Fame clip above on Easter Monday 1986 at the Goldstone, where he singlehandedly breaks a Brighton attack, runs through midfield before passing to Vince Hilaire to cross for a Mick Quinn goal. I was also at this match against Oxford United at Fratton Park in December 1984...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MNGZQuPFTTs

...when among other things he clears off the line from George Lawrence, chases down a John Aldridge clear on goal who has a good length head-start, and finally turns their left-back inside before crossing for Alan Biley's winner. This match, the best afternoon of football I've ever attended, is most famous for Biley's two injury-time goals, but it was Mick Kennedy who was the best player on the pitch that day.

Mick only scored four goals in 129 appearances for Pompey, and the only one I can properly remember without checking my records is the winner against Blackburn in September 1986 - a rainy Saturday afternoon when he scored with a blast from way outside the area, inbetween constant scraps with that Herman Munster look-a-like Glenn Keeley, the day before I moved from Portsmouth to Swansea for five years.

I was also at his very final appearance for Pompey, the famous 2-0 win at The Dell against Saints that gave its name to the Pompey fanzine 'Jan 3rd 88'. Their lot - whose midfield that day included the likes Jimmy Case, Andy Townsend and Glenn Cockerill - just couldn't get past him, meaning their strikers barely got a shot on goal (though I seem to remember them hoofing the ball out of the ground and into Archers Road more than once!). He played like a legend that day, even though he (but few others) knew that chairman John Deacon had already agreed to sell him to second division Bradford City. At the time, Deacon had an obsession with a local basketball team called the Solent Stars, where he threw most of his money to the financial detriment of Pompey (amazing to believe that just thirty years ago, top-flight English football was seen as such a bad investment when compared to the newly-fashionable American sports). We only won two more league matches that season, and I still reckon that the sale of Kennedy is the main reason we were eventually relegated.

However, there was one small positive - six weeks later we played Bradford City at Fratton Park in the FA Cup 5th round, giving the home crowd the chance to give Kennedy the heroes welcome that he deserved.

 
 


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