Mel Hopkins (7 November 1934 – 18 October 2010)[1] was a Wales international footballer. He played at left back.

Mel Hopkins
Personal information
Full name Melvyn Hopkins
Date of birth (1934-11-07)7 November 1934
Place of birth Ystrad, Rhondda, Wales
Date of death 18 October 2010(2010-10-18) (aged 75)
Place of death Worthing, England
Position(s) Full-back
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1952–1964 Tottenham Hotspur 219 (0)
1964–1967 Brighton & Hove Albion 58 (2)
1967–1969 Canterbury City
1969–1970 Bradford Park Avenue 30 (0)
Total 307+ (2)
International career
1956–1963 Wales 34 (0)
*Club domestic league appearances and goals

Club careerEdit

The son of a miner,[2] he was signed by Tottenham Hotspur at the age of 15, when spotted playing for his local boy's club.[3] He was taken on as an apprentice after just one trial.[2] Mel Hopkins made his debut in January 1952[4] and winning a League and FA Cup double in 1961.[5][6] In 1959, he suffered a serious injury following a collision with Ian St John, smashing his nose and upper jaw, an injury which would keep him out of football for two years.[3]

In total, Hopkins played 219 games for Spurs, before leaving Spurs for Brighton and Hove Albion in October 1964 for a transfer fee of £8,000.[3][4] He scored 2 goals and played 58 games for Albion. A brief spell at Ballymena United in Northern Ireland 1967 was followed by a move to Bradford Park Avenue in January 1969, where he played 30 games, retiring in 1970.[7]

International careerEdit

Hopkins played for his country between 1956 and 1963,[8] earning 34 caps[7] including playing for the Wales squad for the 1958 FIFA World Cup in Sweden, where they lost narrowly to Brazil in the quarter-finals.[3][9]

In 2003, Hopkins was given a merit award by the Football Association of Wales.[10]


  1. ^ Mel Hopkins obituary
  2. ^ a b Incredible journey - from Ystrad Boys Club to World Cup; The boys of '58 - Western Mail, June 20, 2002
  3. ^ a b c d Pele broke my heart, Saint broke my nose[permanent dead link] - interview with Mel Hopkins, The Argus, 19 December 2001
  4. ^ a b Tottenham Hotspurs transfer history -
  5. ^ Fans will not forgive Santini - The Argus, October 26, 2004
  6. ^ Remembering the genius of Garrincha -, 20 January 2008
  7. ^ a b Mel Hopkins at Post War English & Scottish Football League A–Z Player's Database
  8. ^ Mel Hopkins statistics on RSSSF
  9. ^ The fiery captain who loved a good punch-up - The Argus, 2 July 2001
  10. ^ Hartson scoops Welsh FA award - ESPNsoccernet, October 6, 2003

Further readingEdit

  • Ashley Drake Publishing - When Pele Broke Our Hearts