It is now fifty years since Cambridge United won the Southern League for the second time in succession and then were elected to the Football League this was achieved with a squad of primarily sixteen professionals most of whom stayed on for the first season in the Football League.
If we look at the team photograph above, what happened to the players after they left the club?
Below is Part 2 of a series to provide some information of what happened as the players moved on.
Today we look at Jimmy Thompson, Mel Slack, Peter Leggett, Keith Barker
The club paid off his contract and his insurance company paid a small amount arguing that the knee had already deteriorated. Bill Leivers was furious at the decision made by the company. Cambridge United made him a field manager for the clubs spot ball competition.
On the 2nd May 1975 a testimonial was organised for him against Norwich. An excellent crowd of 7257 watched an All Stars side play against Norwich City.
All Stars -- Walker P Worthington D Worthington B Smith Mancini Waldron Collins, Shinton Hutchinson Carr Armstrong Watson G, Tully
Goalscorers -- Watson G 70, Hutchinson 80
Norwich - Keelan, Stringer, Sullivan, Morris, Forbes, Powell, McGuir,e MacDougall, Boyer, Suggett, Peters, Steele,
In 2019 Jimmy attended the match between Grimsby and Cambridge United at Blundell Park. Sadly for Jimmy he is now sadly suffering from Dementia. It was reported he could still remember some details of his time at the Abbey Stadium
Jimmy Thompson was a player who was always reliable and was one of those players whose name is included first on the team sheet. Sadly his career was cut short before its time.
After leaving Cambridge City, Mel played in the Cambs League and was well known as the landlord of The Rose & Crown in Teversham.
Mel died 6th August 2016 aged 72 years
Released at the end of the 1970/71 season. He had talks with Cambridge City but these broke down when he suffered a recurrence of a groin injury, and his professional career was over.
Peter later worked as a manager for the Britvic soft drinks company in Chelmsford.
Peter died on November 2nd, at the age of 72
Unfortunately, during a scouting trip to watch Keith, Ian Hutchinson came to their attention and the rest is history.It is also mentioned that Manchester United and Tottenham were interested in the goalkeeper.
After leaving the Abbey the Stoke born goalkeeper signed for Barnsley and during the 1971/72 season made 9 appearances for them before moving onto Cambridge City.
Keith died in January 2008
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