Jack Coleman, football coach

Jack Coleman
Jack Coleman
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Jack Coleman, who has died at 89, spent a lifetime coaching Doncaster’s youngsters in football skills and helped many players – not least the Everton manager Sam Allardyce – get their first break in the professional game.

Others whom he helped turn pro include the former Doncaster Rovers players Paul Raven, Steve Gaughan and Mark Rankine.

Mr Coleman had an association spanning 50 years with the English Schools’ Football Association, and worked across the country helping to introduce youngsters to the game.

His friend, Tony Credland, said: “A number of players went on to become professional footballers, notably Sam Allardyce, to whom Jack gave a lot of support when other teachers were less certain of his prospects.”

He had moved to Doncaster and begun teaching at Percy Jackson Grammar – later Adwick School.

He helped coach the Doncaster Boys team to the English Trophy in 1985 for the only time, and also enjoyed successes with the South Yorkshire county teams.

For his services to school football, he was presented with an inscribed rose bowl by the English Schools FA – but he was never one for social occasions outside of the game.

Mr Credland said: “He paid for individual trophies to his players on a regular basis and never wanted reimbursement, continuing to support the association financially well into his retirement.”