Howard Kendall Everton Legend

Everton Legend Howard Kendall Dies Age Sixty-Nine

Everton Football Club this morning confirmed the very sad news that their greatest ever manager of all time, Howard Kendall had died age sixty-nine in a Southport hospital.

Kendall, who had two spells as a player at Goodison Park, also managed the club on three occasions winning the Football League Championship twice, the FA Cup once and the European Cup Winners Cup in his first spell as manager at the club.


Howard Kendall started his career in 1963 as a defender with Preston North End, the following season Kendall became the youngest player to play in a Wembley Cup Final, when he played against West ham United in the FA Cup Final.

In March 1967, Kendall transferred to Everton for £85,000 and moved into midfield to play alongside Colin Harvey and Alan Ball as they gained the nickname of “Holy Trinity” they were a major component of the Everton team that won the 1969-70 First Division Championship. 

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Further moves followed to Birmingham City, Stoke City and Blackburn Rover where Kendall later became player manager in 1979 until 1981.  The pull of his old club was too much to turn down and he returned to Goodison Park as player manager in 1981.

Initially he struggled and was on the verge of being sacked in January 1984, when results began to pick up with Everton reaching the League Cup Final, losing to Liverpool.  At the end of that season the club won the FA Cup Final beating Watford.

19 May 1984: Everton celebrate after the FA Cup Final against Watford at Wembley Stadium in London. Everton won the match 2-0. Mandatory Credit: David Cannon /Allsport

In the 1984–85 season, Everton won the League Championship, finishing 13 points clear of runners-up Liverpool as well as winning the European Cup-Winners’ Cup, defeating Austrian side Rapid Vienna.

The following season Everton finished runners-up in FA Cup Final, League Cup Final whilst also finishing second in the league to Liverpool.  The 1986–87 season, Everton continued their success winning the League Championship again, nine points clear of Liverpool, as the Merseyside clubs continued their stranglehold on the English game.

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During his first spell at Goodison Park, he built an almost entirely new team which proved itself as one of the finest of the whole decade. He brought in younger players such as Peter Reid and Trevor Steven from smaller clubs to give them the opportunity to prove that they could compete at the highest level.

He also brought in big name players such as Andy Gray who was instrumental his goals transformed a struggling side into FA Cup winners and then league champions and European Cup Winners’ Cup winners.  He then sold Gray to Aston Villa and brought in Gary Lineker who scored more than 30 goals in the 1985-86 season.

Howard Kendall made Everton Football Club not only the best team in England, but also one of Europe’s top team and his success lead to him being named Manager of the Year in both 1985 & 1987.


Howard Kendall left Everton in 1987 and went on to manage Athletic Bilbao, Manchester City, Xanthi, Notts County, Sheffield United, Ethnikos Piraeus and of course Everton on two further occasions.

Kendall was also linked with the England managers job in 1990 when Bobby Robson left the role and also with the Republic of Ireland job in 2001 which was eventually given to Giovanni Trapattoni.

Howard Kendall’s Honours


Preston North End – FA Cup runner-up: 1963–64

Everton – Football League First Division champions: 1969–70
FA Charity Shield winner: 1970
FA Cup runner-up: 1967–68

Stoke City –  Football League Second Division third-place promotion: 1978–79


Blackburn Rovers – Football League Third Division runner-up: 1979–80

Everton – Football League First Division champions: 1984–85, 1986–87
Football League First Division runner-up: 1985–86
FA Cup winner: 1983–84
FA Cup runner-up: 1984–85, 1985–86
FA Charity Shield winner: 1984–85, 1985–86, 1986–87
European Cup Winners’ Cup winner: 1984–85
Football League Cup runner-up: 1983–84
Screen Sport Super Cup runner-up: 1985–86
Full Members Cup runner-up: 1990–91

Notts County – Anglo-Italian Cup winner: 1994–95

Sheffield United – Football League First Division play-offs runner-up: 1996–97


Stoke City player of the season: 1978
English Manager Of The Year: 1985
English Manager Of The Year: 1987

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Former Everton defender and Kendall’s captain Kevin Radcliffe said, “As a manager Howard was so forward-thinking. He was at Everton to win things, his training methods were absolutely fantastic and pre-season meant we never got injuries in training.

Howard made it a joy to attend training every day, you loved going in. If he had stayed at Everton then I think the club would have dominated in the 1980 and 90s.”

Former Everton goalkeeper Neville Southall said, “A great manager, an even greater man. Whatever I did was solely down to him, Gentleman, Friend, Mentor. Will miss him, Gutted.”

Former Everton midfielder Kevin Sheedy said, “So privileged to have played for Everton’s most successful manager.  Absolutely devastated at this sad news. RIP boss.”

Former Everton Striker Gary Lineker said, “Saddened to hear that Howard Kendall has passed away. Brilliantly managed the best club side I ever played for at Everton. Great bloke.”

Don Hutchinson, who played for Kendall both at Everton and Sheffield United said, “The best manager I’ve ever played for”

Former Liverpool defender and boyhood Evertonian Jamie Carragher said, “RIP Howard Kendall the greatest Everton manager there has been. He gave me some of my best football memories especially in the 84/85 season.”

Former Liverpool player and manager Kenny Dalglish said, “Very, very sad news about Howard Kendall, total respect for him as a player, manager and person. Fantastic man, will be sadly missed.  A legend.”

Former Liverpool manager Roy Evans said, “I always thought he would have made a really good England manager.  Even though he was a blue, he was a great friend over many years and it’s a sad loss for lots of people, certainly for the Everton fans who adored him.”

Former Manchester City player Paul Lake said, “A sad day. Howard Kendall was a hugely intelligent and inspirational man who had a knack of bringing people together. He’ll be sorely missed.”

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney, who started his career at Everton said, “It was very sad news, I spoke to Duncan Ferguson this morning about it.  It’s a sad day for Everton, I’m sure everyone at the club feels it and I’d like to pass on my condolences to Howard’s family.”

Shadow Home Secretary, MP and Everton fan Andy Burnham said, “Struggling with the awful news that the finest manager in our history, the great Howard Kendall, has passed on. Thanks for the memories, Howard.”

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