Welsh inside right Mervyn Allen joined the Tigers in the 1931 close season and after a long spell in City’s reserves he made his first team debut in March 1932, announcing his arrival with a considerable splash as he scored in the first minute in a match that finished 1-0. Allen retained his place in City’s first team for the rest of the season but was unable to repeat his initial goalscoring feat.
At the beginning of the 1932/33 season the Football Association of Wales contacted the English FA regarding Allen’s player registration, a subsequent investigation concluded in October 1932 that Mervyn was still registered to Ebbw Vale when he signed for Hull City in 1931 and he should therefore return to the South Wales club. By November 1932 Ebbw Vale and Hull City had come to an arrangement and Allen was once again transferred to the Tigers, this time with all the paperwork in order.
This dispute meant that Allen was unable to play for the Tigers and it wasn’t until Boxing Day 1932 that he returned to the first team, deputising for Russell Wainscoat in a 3-1 win over Halifax Town. During Allen’s absence City had formed a new highly successful forward line based around the centre forward skills of Bill McNaughton, who netted over 40 times, Russell Wainscoat and Andy Duncan. This meant that Mervyn was unable to make any further first team starts in the 1932/33 as the Tigers won the Division Three North title. By the time he reappeared for first team action in April 1934 manager Hayden Green had left the club and Allen had been converted to a right half back. He made four starts in the half back line, all four matches ending in defeat, before leaving the club in the 1934 close season.
Mervyn John Allen was born at Bargoed in the Rhymney Valley north of Cardiff in South Wales, raised by a bricklayer father who was born in Devon. He was raised in Gilfach, a colliery village just south of Bargoed, and started playing football for Southern League side Ebbw Vale in the 1930/31 season, showing form that attracted interest from Hull City.
In July 1934 Allen joined Division Three North side Carlisle United, for whom he made 17 senior appearances until an injury in January 1935 against Halifax Town ended his season and his playing career. By 1939 Allen living back in Bargoed and working as a moulder in a steel foundry. He died in nearby Merthyr Tydfil in 1976.
Date/Place of Birth: 16 October 1909, Bargoed
Hull City First Game: 19 March 1932, Southport H (Division Three North), 22 years, 155 days old
Hull City Final Game: 28 April 1934, Oldham Athletic A (Division Two), 24 years, 194 days old
Ebbw Vale (1930-1931), Hull City (1931-1932), Ebbw Vale (1932), Hull City (1932-1934), Carlisle United (1934-1935)
Hull City Record
Career: 15 apps, 1 goalsMervyn Allen