David Leworthy, he played eleven games for them and twelve minutes for us!
David Leworthy had one of the shortest first-team careers in Pompey’s history: Just 12 minutes as a substitute (for Billy Rafferty) in a goalless draw with Newport County on October 24, 1981. He was then was released by Pompey and signed for non-league Fareham Town where he was a prolific scorer.
Leworthy’s career then took a huge leap when he was signed by Tottenham Hotspur for £5,000. The move also earned Fareham a very lucrative friendly at Cams Alders against Spurs.
Leworthy made his debut for his new club in their 2-0 home defeat against hated rivals, Arsenal in front of nearly fifty thousand fans in a North London derby at White Hart Lane.
He scored three goals in eleven games for Spurs before being moved on to fellow top-flight club, Oxford United, famously scoring against Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United.
Further spells with Reading and Shrewsbury Town followed, before beginning a hugely successful career in non-league football, where his exploits led to him being nicknamed ‘The Legend’ and saw him play four times for the England non-league team.
A successful period at Farnborough Town was followed by a move to Dover Athletic, for £50,000, which saw the non-league transfer record broken. A spell at Rushden & Diamonds involved Leworthy scoring the goal that kept the Northants club in the Conference; a goal which sparked an upturn in the club’s fortunes that culminated in promotion to the Football League.
Leworthy’s happiest days were at Kingstonian where he played in two FA Trophy-winning appearances at Wembley Stadium and scored a superb goal in a 4-2 FA Cup defeat at Luton Town that was broadcast on the BBC’s Match of the Day. Whilst at Kingstonian, the now-veteran player even enjoyed a testimonial match against old club, Tottenham Hotspur.
His career began to draw to a close with a period at Conference South club Havant &
Waterlooville that included a spell as manager. One of the most memorable moments of his spell at Havant was when he turned out for the club alongside his son, former Peterborough United apprentice, Craig.
Leworthy came out of retirement in 2006 for a brief second spell at Kingstonian. He is currently coach at Ryman League Croydon.
David Leworthy may have only played 12 minutes, but that’s 12 minutes more than most people play for their hometown club!
Written by The Rabbi.
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