Mick Morris (footballer, born 1943)

Michael John Morris (20 January 1943 – 15 March 2020) was an English footballer who played as a forward. He spent time with Barking, Grays Athletic, West Ham United (without making a first-team appearance), and Faversham Town, before he joined Oxford United in 1964. He helped the club to win promotion out of the Fourth Division in 1964–65, before he moved on to Port Vale in July 1967. He helped the "Valiants" to also win promotion out of the Fourth Division in 1969–70, before he was moved on to Stafford Rangers in May 1972. After five years with Rangers he ended his career at Leek Town.

Mick Morris
Personal information
Full name Michael John Morris[1]
Date of birth (1943-01-20)20 January 1943[1]
Place of birth Plaistow, Essex, England[1]
Date of death 15 March 2020(2020-03-15) (aged 77)[2]
Playing position(s) Forward
Youth career
Barking
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
Grays Athletic
West Ham United 0 (0)
Faversham Town
1964–1967 Oxford United 90 (15)
1967–1972 Port Vale 184 (24)
1972–1977 Stafford Rangers
Leek Town
Total 274+ (39+)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Playing careerEdit

Morris played for Barking (Isthmian League), Grays Athletic, West Ham United (without making a first-team appearance), and Faversham Town, before he joined Oxford United in June 1964.[3] He helped Arthur Turner's "U's" to win promotion out of the Fourth Division in the 1964–65 campaign.[3] United managed to establish themselves in the Third Division in 1965–66 and 1966–67. He scored 15 goals in 90 league games during his time at the Manor Ground.

Morris signed with Stanley Matthews's Port Vale in July 1967, having cut short his honeymoon in Spain in order to join the club.[1][4] He scored six goals in 31 appearances in the 1967–68 season and scored five goals in 38 games during the 1968–69 season.[1] He then found himself as a utility player at Vale Park under manager Gordon Lee, and missed just two of the "Valiants" 52 games in the 1969–70 Fourth Division promotion-winning campaign.[1] He nevertheless had a fractured relationship with Lee.[5] Morris was ever-present in the 1970–71 season, scoring eight goals in 48 appearances.[1] He then scored three goals in 33 games in the 1971–72 campaign.[1] The chant “We’ve got Micky, Micky Morris on the wing" was frequently sung on the terraces.[4] He was given a free transfer in May 1972, after becoming disillusioned with Lee's defensive tactics.[1] He then spent five years with nearby Northern Premier League side Stafford Rangers; he appeared for them at Wembley in the 1976 FA Trophy defeat to Scarborough.[6][4] He later played for Leek Town and Jubilee W.M.C.

Personal lifeEdit

After retiring as a player he settled in North Staffordshire.[6] He also ran the first ten Potteries marathons, as well as twice in the London Marathon. In 2002, he underwent a double heart bypass operation.[5] His wife, Avis, died in 2008.[4] He was diagnosed with dementia in 2012 and died on 15 March 2020, leaving behind children Andrew and Laura.[4]

StatisticsEdit

Source:[7][8]

Club Season Division League FA Cup Other Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Oxford United 1964–65 Fourth Division 29 3 1 0 2 0 32 3
1965–66 Third Division 27 5 0 0 0 0 27 5
1966–67 Third Division 34 7 1 0 1 0 36 7
Total 90 15 2 0 3 0 95 15
Port Vale 1967–68 Fourth Division 30 6 1 0 0 0 31 6
1968–69 Fourth Division 33 4 5 1 1 0 39 5
1969–70 Fourth Division 45 3 5 0 0 0 50 3
1970–71 Third Division 46 8 1 0 1 0 48 8
1971–72 Third Division 31 3 2 0 0 0 33 3
Total 184 24 14 1 2 0 200 25
Career total 274 39 16 1 5 0 295 40

HonoursEdit

Oxford United
Port Vale
Stafford Rangers

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Kent, Jeff (1996). Port Vale Personalities. Witan Books. p. 205. ISBN 0-9529152-0-0.
  2. ^ Former Oxford Utd and Port Vale promotion winner Mick Morris passes away aged 77
  3. ^ a b "RIP Mick Morris". www.oufc.co.uk. 16 March 2020. Retrieved 20 March 2020.
  4. ^ a b c d e f Baggaley, Michael (19 March 2020). "Tributes are paid to former Port Vale forward Mick Morris". Stoke Sentinel. Retrieved 20 March 2020.
  5. ^ a b "Vale's vital away victory came with a few hitches". The Sentinel. 6 February 2010. Retrieved 7 February 2010.
  6. ^ a b "Mystery Sportsman: Can you identify Port Vale's marathon man?". The Sentinel. 20 June 2009. Retrieved 20 June 2009.
  7. ^ Mick Morris at the English National Football Archive (subscription required)
  8. ^ "Stats". Neil Brown stat site. Retrieved 20 June 2009.
  9. ^ Kent, Jeff (1990). "Surviving on a Shoestring (1969–1979)". The Valiants' Years: The Story Of Port Vale. Witan Books. pp. 227–257. ISBN 0-9508981-4-7.