|Written by Warren|
|Saturday, 07 February 2009|
Name: Alan Brown
D.O.B:26th August 1914 (Died 9th March 1996)
Place of Birth: Consett
Position: Centre Half
Clubs:Huddersfield Town (Wartime Guest for Liverpool, Manchester United & Notts County), Burnley, Notts County.
Clubs Managed: Burnley, Sunderland(Twice), Sheffield Wednesday.
Clubs Coached: Norwegian Team??, Plymouth, Sheffield Wednesday.
Burnley Fee: ???
Signed by Cliff Britton
Burnley Debut: 31st August 1946, v Coventry City (h)
Last game for Burnley: 2nd October,Everton (h)
International Honours: 1 appearance for the Football League 1947.
Burnley Honours: 2nd Division Runners-Up 1946/47, FA Cup Finalist 1947.
Claret Stat: Alan Brown was the center of Burnley's famous 'Iron Man' defence
Brown's footballing life was postponed like many of that era because of WWII, a centre half with some distinction when he turned out for Huddersfield Town while spending some time in the Police force.
When War broke out in 1939 Brown would see himself playing as "Guest " for Manchester United, Liverpool and Notts County as well as turning out for the RAF.
In 1945 Cliff Britton would shape Burnley a then 2nd Division side, and Brown was his most pivotal signing!
Brown, Mather and Woodruff would form the "Iron Curtain", but it would be Brown who would be given the title of "Iron Man", at the age of 31 Brown still had a lot to offer as he and his "Iron Curtain" would keep the goals against column down to a minimum. Alan Brown was given the Captains armband by Britton and would be repaid as Brown played every minute of the 1946/47 Promotion success and FA Cup run resulting in a place at Wembley.
Later in 1948 Brown would be sold, to Notts County who as a third division side had already caused a stir when they signed England and Arsenal's former Burnley player Tommy Lawton, who when he signed signed the end of his England Career, and went down two divisions because of money! Notts County would bypass the minimum wage by handing players jobs in the Directors factories on a very high wage. Brown would join the Notts County revolution signing for a fee of £12.500 a massive fee considering Brown would be 34.
Notts County only gained 3 months out of Brown, as his first coaching role came calling at Hillsborough and Sheffield Wednesday where he stayed until Hill left Burnley on the eve of the 1954/55 season, Alan Brown who had been a huge success as a player at Burnley would return to Turf Moor as manager.
His success as a player unfortunately never followed Brown into management, Burnley with Jimmy McIlroy in the side would not finish higher than 7th under Brown for the three seasons he was at the helm.
In his first season he would have Adamson, Cummings, Seith, McIlroy and Pilkington all first teamers all who would be present 5 seasons later when Burnley took the first division title, by his third year in charge add John Angus, Adam Blacklaw, Ian Lawson, Brian Miller and John Connelly to that list.
Alan Brown started the building work for Burnleys greatest times.
He left Burnley in 1957 to return "Home" to Sunderland in an attempt "Clean up" his boyhood heroes, Sunderland at the time were said to in the middle of a scandal, Bribing players parents to sign they lads for the Mackems. Brown jumped straight into the frying pan or so to speak. Sunderland were relegated in 1958.
Brown's Iron Man image was put to the test as he turned around the red'n'whites winning promotion back to the first division in the 1963/64 season, in doing so Brown shocked the Sunderland fans by quitting, Job done Corruption was out of Roker park and the Mackems were back where they belong!
From Sunderland Brown took the position of manager at Sheffield Wednesday where he guided them to the FA Cup final in the year England went on to win the World Cup. It would be a final for purists Everton reaching the final without conceding a goal while the Owls reached the final by winning in every round away form home and at the first attempt. Although Brown would not collect the trophy at the end, Everton wining 3-2 after being behind in the game 0-2, it was widely regarded as one of the best finals to be staged at "Old" Wembley.
Sunderland came calling once again in 1968 and the lure of his team was to hard to resist, Brown went back to Sunderland in 1968 a year later he and Sunderland found themselves relegated again.
Brown would be sacked in 1972, from there he would take up a coaching role in Norway and become assistant manager at Plymouth Argyle.
He retired from the game after Plymouth, spending his retirement in the south West.
Alan Brown Died on the 8th March 1996 (aged 81)
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