Tony Waddington

Commonly regarded as Stoke's greatest manager he was promoted from assistant to take over as manager in 1960. His initial task was to stop the declining fortunes of the club and to prevent relegation from Division Two.

Within two years he had the club back in Division One, collecting the Second Division title in the club's centenary season of 1962/63, after pulling off the master stroke of enticing Stanley Matthews back from Blackpool. Waddington then established Stoke in Division One, reached two FA Cup semi-finals, and won the League Cup, the club's first major honour, in 1972.

He had a knack for squeezing 'Indian Summers' from players thought past their peak while at the same time getting the best out of home-grown youngsters. Under Waddington, the team built a reputation for playing exciting, entertaining football at times and signed the best goalkeeper in the world, Gordon Banks, in 1967, and paid a world record fee for a goalkeeper, Peter Shilton, in 1974.

Tony Waddington left Stoke in 1977 after economics forced him to sell his best players and he then had a spell in charge of Crewe from 1979-81. However, he returned to Stoke when he was appointed an associate director of the club in 1991 - a position he retained until his death three years later.
Honours (2)
  • domestic-trophies
    • Stoke City:
      • League Cup Winners, (1971-01-01)
  • league-titles
    • Stoke City:
      • Football League Division Two Champions, (1962-01-01)
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