Johnny Haynes

Johnny Haynes
Johnny Haynes at Craven Cottage.jpg
Statue of Haynes outside Craven Cottage
Personal information
Full name John Norman Haynes
Date of birth (1934-10-17)17 October 1934
Place of birth Kentish Town, London, England
Date of death 18 October 2005(2005-10-18) (aged 71)
Place of death Edinburgh, Scotland
Playing position(s) Inside forward
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1952–1970 Fulham 594 (146)
1951 Wimbledon (loan) 6 (4)
1961 Toronto City (loan) 5 (1)
1970–1971 Durban City 24 (9)
1972–1973 Wealdstone 3 (0)
Total 632 (160)
National team
1955–1957 England U23 8 (8)
1954–1962 England 56 (18)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only
Fulham FC in 1958 with Johnny Haynes, as player number four from left in the front line.

John Norman Haynes (17 October 1934 – 18 October 2005) was an English association football player. He made 56 appearances for his country including 22 as captain. He was selected for 3 World Cup finals squads playing in the latter two of those. Nicknamed "the Maestro", his attacking play was noted for two footed passing ability, vision and deftness of touch.[1] Haynes is widely regarded as Fulham's greatest ever player remaining loyal there for 20 years despite coming no nearer to a major trophy win than two FA Cup semi-final appearances. Immediately following the abolition of the £20 maximum wage in 1961 he became the first player to be paid £100 a week.[2] He also had a spell on loan with Toronto City in 1961 and ended his playing days at Durban City, winning there the only trophy he won in his football career.

Playing career

The son of post office engineer, he was born in Kentish Town supporting Arsenal as a boy. He signed for Fulham as a 15-year-old amateur in 1950 when Fulham were in a 3-season spell in the Football League top tier. He was loaned to then non-league Wimbledon. He made his senior debut aged 18 in the 1952 home Boxing Day visit of Southampton when Fulham were in their 1st season back in the Football League 2nd tier.[3]

Haynes made his debut for the England football team in October 1954, scoring a goal in a 2–0 victory over Northern Ireland in Belfast. He first captained England in 1960 and played for them at two World Cups.[4]

He was one of many signatories in a letter to The Times on 17 July 1958 opposing 'the policy of apartheid' in international sport and defending 'the principle of racial equality which is embodied in the Declaration of the Olympic Games'.[5]

Haynes played in his 1st of 2 FA Cup semi-finals in 1958. They were eliminated in a replay by the remnants of Manchester United's Busby Babes team that had been decimated in the Munich air disaster the month before. United were the first top division team Fulham played in that cup run. Fulham were promoted to the top division when finishing second to Sheffield Wednesday in 1959. In the 1959–60 season, Fulham finished tenth in the top division, which until finishing ninth in the 2003–04 season was their highest-ever league position. Following the abolition of the £20 maximum wage in 1961 he became Britain's first footballer to earn £100 per week. He played in a 2nd FA Cup semi-final in 1962 losing a replay this time to Burnley. In 1961, during the English off season he played abroad in the Eastern Canada Professional Soccer League with Toronto City.[6]

In August 1962 on Blackpool promenade the sports car in which he was returning late to his hotel was blown by a gust of wind into the path of another vehicle. Haynes broke bones in both feet and badly injured a knee. He recounts that the police officer who attended the incident reassured him by saying "Don't worry son, you've only broken your legs". He missed almost a season and, when he returned to the Fulham side, was not quite the same player. Prior to the accident he had captained England 22 times, and, being only 27, was expected to lead them in the 1966 World Cup; but he was never again selected for the national team.[7]

Fulham were relegated in 1968. Haynes then had a single spell in football management, taking charge of the Cottagers for 18 days in November that year after the dismissal of Bobby Robson as player-manager, but Haynes never had any ambition to go into coaching. That season Fulham endured a 2nd successive relegation. His last appearance for Fulham's 1st team was on 17 January 1970 in a 3rd tier home match against Stockport County.[citation needed] In total he made 657 appearances for Fulham, and scored 157 goals.[3]

In 1970, he retired professionally aged 35, and joined Durban City playing one season and winning South Africa's 1970–71 National Football League (South Africa). This was his only winner's medal in senior football.[3] During the 1972–73 season, Haynes made three league appearances for non-league club Wealdstone.[8]

After playing

On retiring from playing in 1970 he was already an active bookmaker. He sold his chain of bookmakers to The Tote in 1976.[9] In 1985 he moved to Edinburgh, the city of his partner Avril.[9][10] Haynes first met Avril in the 1960s when she travelled down to London to buy stock for boutiques she ran in Edinburgh.[10] On moving to Edinburgh he ran a laundry business with Avril,[11] played golf[9] and watched local club, Heart of Midlothian. In 2004 he and Avril married in a secret ceremony at Dalkeith registry office.[10]


On 17 October 2005 Haynes was driving his car on Edinburgh's Dalry Road when he suffered a brain haemorrhage, instantaneously effectively rendering him brain dead. The vehicle veered across the road crashing into a van.[10] Although kept on a ventilator for some 30 hours, the ventilator was turned off on the evening of 18 October 2005.[12] He had just turned 71 years old the day before.[4] The funeral at Mortonhall Crematorium was attended by ex-players Bobby Charlton, George Cohen, Sven-Göran Eriksson, Dave Mackay, Alan Mullery, Jimmy Murray and Bobby Robson and also George Foulkes. Avril was unable to attend due to injuries from the car accident. He is survived by Avril and his step-children Mark and Sara.[10]


In 2002 Haynes became an Inaugural Inductee to the English Football Hall of Fame in recognition of his football talents and impact on the English game.[13]

On the day of Haynes' death, Alan Mullery, another ex Fulham and England player, made the following tribute: "He was the only reason I went to Fulham as a young boy of 15 leaving school. He was my hero, the captain of England and Fulham. The word great rolls off the tongue quite easily these days but he really was. He was the best passer of a ball I have ever seen - I don't know anyone who could pass a ball as accurately. Anyone who saw him will know what a great player he was."[4]

Shortly after his death Fulham renamed The Stevenage Road Stand as The Johnny Haynes Stand.

George Cohen, a World Cup winner for England in 1966 and a Fulham teammate of Johnny Haynes, stated: "I have a hundred individual memories of the beauty of John's play. One stands out for the sheer perfection of his skill. It was a charity match which, but for that one second, has faded completely from my memory. The ball came to him at speed on a wet, slippery surface but with the slightest of adjustments, one that was almost imperceptible, he played it inside a full-back and into the path of an on-running winger. I looked at our coach Dave Sexton on the bench and he caught my glance and shook his head as if to say 'fantastic'. Haynes could give you goose bumps on a wet night in a match that didn't matter."[14]

Bobby Moore, Haynes' successor as England captain, said of him: "Once you get used to watching that perfection you realised the rest of the secret. John was always available, always hungry for the ball, always wanting to play. I loved watching the player. Later I learnt to love the man." Pelé said he had never seen a better passer of the ball than Haynes.[15]

The Fulham Supporters Trust stated: "His dedication, skill, professionalism, grace and charm - both in his playing days and in retirement - serve as a poignant reminder to many of today's footballers about what true greatness really means." [4] On 28 July 2008, Fulham announced that fundraising had commenced, with the co-operation of a fan's group, to produce a lasting tribute to Haynes.[16] The Johnny Haynes Statue was unveiled outside the stadium before the 0–0 draw v Sunderland on Saturday 18 October 2008.

Career statistics



Club performance League Cup League Cup Continental Total
Season Club League Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
England League FA Cup League Cup Europe Total
1952–53 Fulham Second Division 18 1
1953–54 41 16
1954–55 37 8
1955–56 40 18
1956–57 33 5
1957–58 38 15
1958–59 34 26
1959–60 First Division 31 10
1960–61 39 9
1961–62 38 5
1962–63 8 0
1963–64 40 8
1964–65 39 5
1965–66 33 6
1966–67 36 6
1967–68 34 5
1968–69 Second Division 28 1
1969–70 Third Division 27 3
Total England 594 147
Career total 594 147


England national team
Year Apps Goals
1954 1 1
1955 2 0
1956 7 4
1957 6 3
1958 10 4
1959 7 1
1960 7 3
1961 8 2
1962 8 0
Total 56 18



Durban City



  • Brown, Geoff and Hogsbjerg, Christian. Apartheid is not a Game: Remembering the Stop the Seventy Tour campaign. London: Redwords, 2020. ISBN 9781912926589.


  1. ^ Haynes, England's pass-master general Archived 3 December 2017 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ Coates, Sam; Asthana, Anushka (20 October 2005). "Johnny Haynes". The Times. London. Retrieved 22 February 2011. (subscription required)
  3. ^ a b c "Johnny Haynes". Obituaries. The Independent. 20 October 2005.
  4. ^ a b c d "Legendary Haynes dies after car crash". BBC. 12 October 2005. Retrieved 30 May 2017.
  5. ^ Brown and Hogsbjerg, Apartheid is not a game, 16
  6. ^ Jose, Colin (2001). On-Side - 125 Years of Soccer in Ontario. Vaughan, Ontario: Ontario Soccer Association and Soccer Hall of Fame and Museum. p. 207.
  7. ^ "Johnny Haynes". The Daily Telegraph. London. 20 October 2005.
  8. ^ "Johnny Haynes". National Football Teams. Benjamin Strack-Zimmerman. Retrieved 8 June 2019.
  9. ^ a b c "Johnny Haynes" 20 October 2005
  10. ^ a b c d e "Stars bid farewell to Haynes the legend" The Scotsman, 2005
  11. ^ "How Johnny's genius served the nation" 23 October 2005
  12. ^ Goldman, L. (2013). Oxford Dictionary of National Biography 2005-2008. ODNB Print Series. OUP Oxford. p. 504. ISBN 978-0-19-967154-0. Retrieved 24 June 2017.
  13. ^ "English Football Hall of Fame: 2002 Inaugural Inductees". National Football Museum. Archived from the original on 6 June 2011. Retrieved 14 November 2013.
  14. ^ James Lawton: Haynes still the beginning, middle and end of how football should be played . Retrieved 14 November 2013.
  15. ^ Fulham fail the maestro | Fulham - Times Online Archived 1 December 2008 at the Wayback Machine (subscription required)
  16. ^ "Johnny Haynes Statue Action Group". Johnny Haynes Statue Action Group. Archived from the original on 15 July 2009. Retrieved 14 November 2013.
  17. ^ "Johnny Haynes". National Football Teams. Benjamin Strack-Zimmerman. Retrieved 28 January 2010.

External links

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Billy Wright
England captain
Succeeded by
Bobby Moore