Jimmy joins up with Former Players’ Association

Jimmy Hamilton (centre) gets in a header when Sunderland played Burnley at Roker Park in the final of the Washington Youth International Festival in 1972

Jimmy Hamilton (centre) gets in a header when Sunderland played Burnley at Roker Park in the final of the Washington Youth International Festival in 1972

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THE Sunderland Former Players’Association has welcomed five new members, including the youngest goal-scorer in Sunderland’s history: Jimmy Hamilton.

Former youth and reserve teamers Ian Harrison and John Leadbitter were among the new arrivals, as were Peter Reid signings – wingers Neil Wainwright and Matty Piper.

Scots-born Jimmy made his debut against Preston North End at home in September 1971, at the age of 16 years 103 days.

In doing so, he became the youngest outfield player ever to play for Sunderland – only goalkeeper Derek Forster, who played in goal on the first day of the 1964-65 season, was younger.

Jimmy, who went on to be nicknamed “Chico” by fans, came on as a substitute and scored a last-minute winning goal in a 4-3 win, rising to a cross at the far post to nod home at the Roker End.

He was on Sunderland’s books from 1971-75, moving on to Plymouth and Bristol Rovers before playing more than 150 games for Carlisle United.

He also played in Australia and Scotland with Gretna and Queen of the South.

The 59-year-old now lives and works in Dumfries and he and the Association’s Maurice Hepworth met in Carlisle to sign for the ex-players’ organisation.

* The Association has finalised its golf days for the autumn with a challenge match on Wednesday, September 17 at Bedale, a Texas Scramble on Friday, September 26 at Sharpley and a Cock O’ The North Tournament on Wednesday, October 1 at the Ramside Hotel.

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