3 November 2009

Tony Curley

ColeraineFC.com
Name: Anthony Curley
Born: 5 May 1939, Lurgan
Died: 19 September 2011
Height: 5.09 ft
Weight: 11.00 st
Position: Indside-Forward

Representative Honours: Northern Ireland: 2 Amateur Caps / 2 Goals (1963); Irish League: 1 Cap (1964)
Club Honours: (with Distillery) Irish League Champion 1962/63; Irish Cup Runner-Up 1962/63; City Cup Winner 1962/63; (with Glentoran) Irish League Champion 1963/64; Irish Cup Runner-Up 1963/64; Gold Cup Runner-Up 1963/64; (with Coleraine) Irish league Champion 1973/74; Irish Cup Winner 1964/65, 1971/72; Gold Cup Winner 1968/69; City Cup Winner 1968/69; Ulster Cup Winner; Blaxnit Cup Winner 1968/69, 1969/70; Top Four Cup Winner 1968/69.

Club Career:
Teams
Seasons
Signed
Fee
League
FA Cup
Europe
Other
Shelbourne
(Junior)
-
-
-
-
-
-
Distillery
62/63
-
Amateur
-
-
-
-
Glentoran
63/64-64/65
c/s-63
-
*51 (0)/ 19
-
1(0)/0
-
Coleraine
64/65-73/74
-64
-
*387(13)/129
-
7(2)/2
-
TOTALS
-
£-
438(13)/148
-
8(2)/2
-
* all domestic games.

Biography:
Tony Curley broke into the Distillery firstteam during the first half of the 1962/63 season, filling in as left-back, left-half, inside-left and centre-forward before establising himself at inside-right. Early impressive form brought him a City Cup winner's medal and amateur international recognition. His club-form peaked at exactly the right time as Distillery chased down their first Irish League title in 57 years. He scored in the final three matches of the season, wins over Glenavon, Crusaders and, most importantly, in the "decider" against title rivals Linfield to give The Whites the Gibson Cup by a two-point margin. Although Linfield had already seen-off Distillery in a close-fought Irish Cup final, Curley's season finished with another Amateur cap and another goal in a 5-2 win over Scotland.

In the summer of 1963 Curley transferred to Glentoran. He managed 19 goals in a season that bore some similarities to the one previous with Distillery. Glentoran broke their eleven year title drought, pipping Coleraine in the league by a single point. In the Irish Cup Final The Glens lost-out to unfancied Derry City. One remarkable statistic was that Glentoran managed 21 goals against Linfield, with Curley failing to claim any of them! Although his career was to last a further decade, Curley won his only inter-league recognition in April 1964.

Early in the 1964/65 campaign Curley was deemed "surplus to requirements" by Glentoran and allowed to join Coleraine. It was with The Bannsiders that he was to become a legend, playing over 400 games and helping them to many landmark trophy wins. In 1965 he played in his third consecutive Irish Cup final, for a third different team, and finally got his hands on a winner's medal. The following season as Coleraine played in Europe for the first time, Curley scored their first Eueopean goal against Dynamo Kiev, though the game was lost 6-1.

Curley scored 23 times in Coleraine's 1968/69 "Five Trophy" season, claiming Ulster Cup, Gold Cup, City Cup, Blaxnit Cup and Top Four Cup winner's medals. The following season, as well as claiming another Blaxnit Cup, he also score against Jeunesse Esch of Luxembourg in the Fairs Cup as Coleraine won a European tie for the first time in their history. By the time of Coleraine's second Irish Cup win in 1972, Curley was more normally to be found in midfield and his versatility helped bring the Irish League to the Showgrounds for the first time in 1974.

After his retirement as a player, Curley coached, managed and scouted for Coleraine. He died in September 2011, aged 72.

ColeraineFC Legends

Northern Ireland Amateur Cap Details:
12-01-1963 Wales... A W 2-0 1 Goal
10-05-1963 Scotland H W 5-2 1 Goal

Summary: 2/2. Won 2, Drew 0, Lost 0.

Irish League Representative Appearance Details:
15-04-1964 League of Ireland H D 2-2

Summary: 1/0. Won 0, Drew 1, Lost 0.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The Late Great Tony Curley a hero to all Coleraine FC Fans always remembered as a great player and a true gentleman.

Who was Northern Ireland's Greatest World Cup Player & Team? (select up to eleven players)

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