Thanks, no thanks – Doncaster Rovers

Thanks – Ian Branfoot


Branfoot is before my time, but I was brought up on a diet of ‘this lot aren’t as good as 1976’, and to some extent, it is my duty as a Lincoln site to ensure some of the heroes of yesteryear remain known amongst fellow Imps.

Ian Branfoot started out at Gateshead in the early 1960’s before he joined Sheffield Wednesday in 1965. He then move to Doncaster Rovers when he made over 150 appearances, before joining the Graham Taylor revolution in 1973–74.

He went on to make over 150 league appearances for the Imps as well, always cultured and strong at right back, part of the record-breaking 1976 Fourth division title-winning side. He even cored our 100th goal of that epic season, up until recently our only Football league triumph in a generation.

Branfoot learned from future England manager Graham Taylor at Sincil Bank and harboured coaching ambitions from a very young age. He was fully qualified by the age of 21 and became player-coach at Lincoln by the time he was 30.

His tenure with City came to a close in September 1978, becoming Youth coach at Southampton under his former manager at Doncaster, Lawrie McMenemy. He later managed Reading, leading them to promotion in 1984 and again a year later, as well as winning the Simod Cup in 1988. Later spells at Southampton and Fulham didn’t prove to be as fruitful.


    • Yes and he replaced Norman Corner in the side resulting in us falling away in the hunt for promotion in 68/69.

      Thanks to Malcolm for that insight!

  1. Malcolm beat me to it. The boy wonder who sadly broke his leg playing for Donny, at the time Manchester United was interested in him. He came to City on loan when Ron Grey was looking for some experience in his team. He had an heck of a shot on him too. Maybe not has hard as Perc’ but was hard enough. Without checking my records, I believe Jeffery finished his playing days with Skegness Town

  2. Alick Jeffrey sadly was a busted flush by the time he joined us, injuries and an ‘ahem’ less than diligent conditioning routine taking its toll. Still capable of astonishing skill, but on balance a ‘no thanks’.

    Belive those who say ‘Branny’ was the best right back we’ve had in my time (50 years), Neal Eardley included though that is close. Tough defensively, great bombing forward whether in support of the mercurial ‘Whizzer’ Krzywicki or the more prosaic John Fleming, his party piece was scoring from corners when he’d stand on the goal line and (occasionally) knock in the near post corners from Smithy.

  3. What about Dennis Leigh . Fine servant to both clubs got his autograph over 50 years since as rovers fan in town centre

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