Open main menu

Trevor John Cherry (born 23 February 1948) is a former England and Leeds United footballer who also captained his country. He was a defender who also played for Huddersfield Town and Bradford City, and managed the latter club.

Trevor Cherry
Personal information
Full name Trevor John Cherry
Date of birth (1948-02-23) 23 February 1948 (age 71)
Place of birth Huddersfield, West Riding of Yorkshire, England
Playing position Defender
Youth career
1963–1965 Huddersfield Town
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1965–1972 Huddersfield Town 188 (12)
1972–1982 Leeds United 399 (24)
1982–1985 Bradford City 92 (0)
Total 679 (36)
National team
1977 England U21 1 (0)
1976–1980 England 27 (0)
Teams managed
1982–1987 Bradford City
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Born in Huddersfield, England, educated at Stile Common Junior School, Newsome, Huddersfield and encouraged with his football by headmaster Wally Heap, Cherry started at his hometown team before he made his name at Leeds United during the 1970s. He won a total of 27 international caps and became just the third England international to be shown the red card.

Playing careerEdit

Huddersfield TownEdit

Born in Huddersfield, England, Cherry joined his hometown club Huddersfield Town as part of the groundstaff in July 1963 as a 15-year-old from the Huddersfield YMCA, before signing a full-time professional contract in 1965.[1] He quickly established himself as a useful and inspirational defender who could play anywhere across the back line. Cherry helped Huddersfield win the Second Division title in the 1969–70 season as captain. They were relegated after two seasons in the top flight and Cherry left for local rivals Leeds United.

Leeds UnitedEdit

Cherry—along with teammate Roy Ellam— moved along the M62 in 1972 when Leeds paid £100,000 to Huddersfield for his services. With the veteran Jack Charlton at the point of retirement, Leeds manager Don Revie needed to find someone to step readily into his defence for when Charlton quit.

Cherry ended up playing both alongside and instead of Charlton in his first season but was predominantly at left back, with the continued absence of broken leg victim Terry Cooper further depleting Revie's defensive resources. By the end of the season Cherry had amassed 38 League appearances and was selected by Revie for the 1973 FA Cup final.

The game was eventful for Cherry, as it was his first final. The other ten Leeds players who started the match had all played in the win over Arsenal twelve months earlier. Cherry was easily the most inexperienced player in the Leeds team but although the side as a whole played disappointingly, Cherry did not.

A defender always willing to join in the attack, Cherry played his part in what would become one of the FA Cup's most famous moments in that Wembley final. Leeds were a goal down to opponents Sunderland midway through the second half when Cherry made a late run to meet a long cross from Paul Reaney with a vicious flying header which was heading for the far corner. Sunderland goalkeeper Jimmy Montgomery made a fine save but pushed the ball into the path of Peter Lorimer, whose goalbound shot was somehow saved by a swiftly recovering Montgomery, turning the goalkeeper into an icon of his club and the FA Cup as a whole. Sunderland held on and Cherry would never win the FA Cup.

He did, however, win the League championship with Leeds in 1973–74, as the team went on a record 29-match unbeaten run at the start of the season to make sure the title would be theirs. Again, Cherry spent much of the season at left back.

1975 was a mixed year for Cherry. Injury curtailed half of his season, but he recovered in time to help Leeds in their European Cup campaign as it progressed towards the semi-finals and a game against Barcelona. Cherry marked Dutch legend Johan Cruyff out of each leg as Leeds reached the final, but after missing subsequent League matches through suspension, manager Jimmy Armfield did not recall him for the final in Paris against Bayern Munich, which Leeds lost 2–0.

In 1976, Cherry became Leeds captain after Billy Bremner left and won his first England cap, his own career progressing on a personal level as Leeds United's standards as a club started to slip. Most of the side which Revie had put together prior to his departure for the England job in 1974 were either leaving or just ageing, and Leeds no longer found themselves forcing issues in any of the major club competitions. At the end of that season, Cherry also scored the only goal in the final game played between the English and Scottish leagues at Hampden Park.[2]

Cherry continued to play for Leeds until 1982, the year that the club were relegated under the management of his former teammate Allan Clarke, exactly ten years after Cherry had suffered the same fate with Huddersfield.

In 2000, Cherry was voted the 30th best Leeds United player by its fans.

Bradford CityEdit

Cherry played three months of Second Division football before leaving for another neighbouring club, Bradford City where he became player-manager. He played for three years until he retired to concentrate on management. His final game in football was City's 2–0 win against Bolton Wanderers on 6 May 1985 which captured the Division Three title.

International careerEdit

Cherry won his first English cap on 24 March 1976 against Wales.

He became only the third England player to receive his marching orders in an international, when he was sent off against Argentina in 1977. He is the first of just two England players to receive a red card in an international friendly, the second being Raheem Sterling. Cherry lost two teeth after being punched in the mouth by Daniel Bertoni, who Cherry had felled with a nasty tackle from behind; Bertoni also received a red card.[3]

He maintained his England career through the rest of the 1970s even after his mentor Revie left the job, but England did not qualify for the 1978 World Cup.

When England finally did qualify for a major tournament – their first in ten years – Cherry made the squad of 22 which travelled to Italy for the 1980 European Championships. His input on the pitch was limited, however, to a single substitute appearance against Spain in a group game. England were knocked out of the tournament at the same stage. It was to be his final cap.

Cherry made a total of 27 international appearances, including four as substitute. He was also captain for his penultimate cap against Austria in 1980.

Management careerEdit

Cherry was manager of Bradford City during its most turbulent era. He took over from Roy McFarland in the season following the team's promotion from the Fourth Division in 1982. Six months later the club almost closed after it fell into receivership in June 1983, before Cherry successfully secured promotion to the Second Division in 1984–85, as Bradford City won the Third Division league title and with it Cherry the Third Division manager of the season award.[4] Cherry's own personal and on-field success paled into utter insignificance when the Valley Parade ground was devastated by fire during the final game of the season on 11 May 1985. The fire took 56 lives. The subsequent appeal to raise money for the bereaved families and injured supporters raised more than four million pounds, and Cherry was among the mourners at many funerals.

An ardent Cherry oversaw City's nomadic times, finishing 13th in 1986 whilst alternating between Odsal Stadium, Bradford and his former stomping grounds of Elland Road, Leeds and Leeds Road, Huddersfield. City's first league game back at Valley Parade was 19 months after the fire on 26 December 1986 against Derby County. However, with the previously homeless team struggling on the field, Cherry was sacked two days after the club's second home game back at the new stadium, on 5 January 1987, following a 0–0 draw with Birmingham City, a result that saw the club in the relegation zone. He was replaced later that month by Terry Dolan.


After he was sacked by Bradford City, Cherry gave up football in general for a number of years. He now runs a promotions and hospitality company in Huddersfield, a waste paper company and a five-a-side football centre.[5] In 2004, he also made a bid to buy into Leeds United.[6]

He was also given an honorary degree by the University of Huddersfield in November 2005.[7]


  1. ^ Frost, Terry (1988). Bradford City - A Complete Record 1903–1988. Breedon Books Sport. p. 92. ISBN 0-907969-38-0.
  2. ^ FAQs
  3. ^, England statistics' to fire England quest
  4. ^ Frost, Terry (1988). Bradford City A Complete Record 1903–1988. Breedon Books Sport. p. 81. ISBN 0-907969-38-0.
  5. ^ Telegraph & Argus, Clever Trevor is mixing his business with leisure Archived 20 May 2009 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ Yorkshire Post, Yorkshire trio's future on line
  7. ^ BBC News, University honour for soccer star

External linksEdit