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Paul Went (12 October 1949 – 4 January 2017)[1] was an English footballer with a quick turn of pace[2] who played professionally for five clubs[3] over a fifteen-year period. He was one of that generation who bridged the gap between terminological eras, beginning his career as a centre-half and ending it as a central defender[4] despite playing a similar role throughout.

Paul Went
Personal information
Full name Paul Frank Went
Date of birth (1949-10-12)12 October 1949
Place of birth London, England
Date of death 4 January 2017(2017-01-04) (aged 67)
Height 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Playing position Centre Half
Youth career
1964–66 Leyton Orient
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1966–1967 Leyton Orient 50 (5)
1967–1972 Charlton Athletic 163 (15)
1972–1973 Fulham 58 (3)
1973–1976 Portsmouth 92 (5)
1976–1978 Cardiff City 72 (11)
1978–1980 Orient 45 (3)
Total 480 (42)
National team
1967–1968 England Under 18 10 (0)
Teams managed
1981 Orient
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only


Born in Bromley-by-Bow on 12 October 1949 he played for both England schoolboys and the Under 18 youth side.[5] After an apprenticeship he broke into the Orient first team in 1966, becoming the club's youngest ever player, and played 50 games for the club before being transferred to Charlton in June 1967.[6]

He spent five years at The Valley before moving to Fulham in the summer of 1972. After only 18 months he was off to Portsmouth, part of new chairman John Deacon's ambitious new rebuilding programme.[7] Manager John Mortimore planned a rock-like central partnership between Went and Malcolm Manley,[8] but the former Leicester defender injured his knee in only his 11th game for the Fratton Park club and never played professionally again. Went, by contrast, was voted "Player of the Year" at the end of his first season.

As financial crisis piled on crisis[9] manager Ian St John cut the wage bill by selling Went to Cardiff City, his last game being a 4–1 away defeat to Shrewsbury. Went's departure opened the door for future England defender Steve Foster, who was switched by St John from attack to defence. After two eventful years in Wales[10] Went returned to his home town to rejoin his first club. As his playing career drew to an end Went was appointed Assistant Manager at Brisbane Road, culminating in a twenty-one day reign as full manager.[11]


  1. ^ "Paul Went: 1949-2017". Fulham Football Club. Retrieved 2017-01-07.
  2. ^ Speed praised
  3. ^ One, Orient twice: “The PFA Premier League and Football League Players’ Records 1946–98” Hugman,B: Harpenden, Queen Anne Press, 1998 ISBN 1-85291-585-4
  4. ^ As football moved from 1–2–3–5 to 1-4-3-3/1–4–2–4
  5. ^ 10 caps between 14 February 1967 and 28 February 1968-accessed via AFS Database December 24th 2007 13:28
  6. ^ Transfer to Fulham
  7. ^ ”Portsmouth, from Tindall to Ball” Farmery, C: Southend-on-Sea, Desert Island Books, 1999 ISBN 1-874287-25-2
  8. ^ "Pompey: The History of Portsmouth Football Club" Cooper,M/ Neasom,M/ Robinson,D: Portsmouth, Milestone Publications, 1984 ISBN 0-903852-50-0
  9. ^ Garcia makes fresh pleas in SOS Pompey campaign: Article in "The News" by Mike Neasom Wednesday 22 September 1976
  10. ^ Scores winner for Cardiff to avoid relegation[permanent dead link]
  11. ^ One day managerial career[permanent dead link]