Death of Leeds United legend Terry Cooper

Leed United hero: Terry Cooper. Picture: Getty ImagesLeed United hero: Terry Cooper. Picture: Getty Images
Leed United hero: Terry Cooper. Picture: Getty Images
Terry Cooper, who scored the goal that secured in Leeds United’s first major trophy win, has died aged 77.

In the 15 months since the death of Norman Hunter in April 2020, the Whites have also lost Trevor Cherry, Jack Charlton, Peter Lorimer, Mick Bates and now Cooper, all important parts of their history in the Don Revie era.

Cooper also played for and managed Doncaster Rovers

It is his time at Elland Road, though, he will most be remembered for, making 351 appearances as he carved out a reputation as arguably the club’s finest left-back. He only scored 11 goals in that time, but his strike against Arsenal in the 1968 League Cup final was historic.

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It was the only goal of the game as Leeds won their first major trophy. They followed it up with the Fairs Cup in the autumn, Cooper playing in both legs against Ferencvaros, and the 1969 league title and Charity Shield.

He made his England debut that year, and would be the first-choice left-back at the 1970 World Cup. At that time, many felt he was the best left-back on the planet.

North Yorkshire-born Cooper would also play in the 1970 FA Cup final, though he missed the 1972 and 1973 showpieces with a broken leg. He played in both legs of the 1971 Fairs Cup final as Leeds beat Juventus on away goals.

Converted from a left-winger, Cooper retained those attacking instincts in the role he made his own. He made just 17 further appearances for the club after his broken leg and left at the end of 1974-75 to join Bristol City. He also played for Bristol Rovers and Doncaster, managing all of them, along with Exeter City twice and Birmingham City.

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