Often described as one of the best goalkeepers of his generation, Neville Southall is an Everton legend having amassed 578 appearances during 17 years with the club. At his peak, he was arguably the best in the world.
Born in North Wales, Southall began his career as a semi-professional before joining Bury in 1980 for £6,000. 39 appearances for the Shakers preceded a move to Everton, Southall debuting for the Toffees in a 2-1 win over Ipswich Town in October 1981.
It took Southall a couple of years before he established himself as Everton’s number one keeper during the 1983-84 season, playing in a League Cup final loss to Liverpool and FA Cup victory over Watford.
Everton embarked on one of the most successful periods in the club’s history during the mid-80s with Southall playing a vital role as the Blues captured the title in two out of three seasons and also a first European trophy.
Southall is revered for his shot-stopping abilities and instinctive reactions in goal. Before it became fashionable to find the ‘extra one percent’ Southall was reading about other sports, techniques and equipment in order to improve himself on the pitch.
Everton’s form suffered in the 1990s although Southall remained a consistent performer for the club, one of his great moments coming in the 1995 FA Cup final when Everton surprisingly beat Manchester United 1-0.
Following short spells at Stoke and Doncaster, Southall moved to Devon where he played over 50 matches for Torquay United.
Although he did not play for Wales in a major tournament, Southall’s 92 caps over a fifteen year international career are a record.
Since retirement from playing, Southall has managed and coached and worked extensively with disadvantaged children, setting up his own educational consultancy.
Principal English Clubs: Bury, Everton, Port Vale, Southend United, Stoke City, Doncaster Rovers, Torquay United
Honours: 2 Division One Championships, 2 FA Cups, 1 European Cup Winners' Cup
Caps: 92 (Wales)