Experienced winger Terry Curran had a lengthy reputation as a talented football maverick when he signed a short term contract at Hull City in October 1986. In three weeks he started four league games and two cup ties, scoring against Grimsby Town in the Full Members’ Cup, before moving on to Sunderland.
Edward Terence Curran, often known as TC, was born in Kinsley, a colliery village between Wakefield and Doncaster. His career began at Doncaster Rovers at the age of 18 after playing in local football in his teens while serving an apprenticeship as a paint sprayer. By 1974 he was a first team regular at Belle Vue, providing the supply line for strikers Mike Kitchen and Brendan O’Callaghan while also chipping in seven goals himself. In August 1975 Terry was lured to Nottingham Forest by the unique charms of Brian Clough, engineering a £50,000 transfer and making a strong impression as Forest climbed up the Second Division table. Curran started 1976/77 season in impressive fashion, scoring nine goals in 14 League and Cup games before a serious injury left him on the sidelines as Forest won promotion to the First Division by finishing third in the table. While this form signalled that Curran had a considerable talent, the falling out he had with Forest assistant manager Peter Taylor was a sign of his single-minded temperament. As Clough and Taylor’s Forest dominated the First Division and lifted the League Cup in 1977/78, Curran was restored to fitness but remained sidelined, loaned to Bury before joining First Division rivals Derby County in November 1977. His stay at the Baseball Ground lasted less than a season, in the 1978 close season he moved to Lawrie McMenemy’s Southampton for a £60,000 fee. Curran’s non-conforming ways irked former guardsman McMenemy and by March 1979 Curran was on his way again, though not before scoring his only Saints goal to secure a League Cup semi-final victory and playing in (and losing) the Final against his former club Nottingham Forest. After flirting with an offer to move to the USA, Curran joined Sheffield Wednesday in March 1979 for a £100,000 fee – a significant investment for a Third Division side.
Curran found a good home at Hillsborough under the management of former England defender Jack Charlton. He played in 12 games at the end of 1978/79, scoring his first goal for the club in a 1-1 draw against Hull City. In 1979/80 he missed only a handful of games and scored 24 goals in all competitions as the Owls won promotion by finishing third in the Third Division. He scored another 11 goals in 1980/81 as Wednesday consolidated in mid-table of the Second Division, notably getting into a fracas with Oldham’s Simon Stainrod in September 1980 that precipitated a riot on the Hillsborough terraces that led to a four match closure of the Wednesday terraces. Wednesday missed out on promotion by a point in 1981/82 with Curran netting three times, but his relationship with manager Charlton was deteriorating and he moved to rivals Sheffield United in the 1982 close season. The Blades were managed by Curran’s former Wednesday team-mate Ian Porterfield and he was a first team regular. He spent December and January of that season on loan at Everton, returning to Bramall Lane for the remainder of the season before signing a permanent deal with the Toffees in the 1983 close season. He made nine starts for Everton in 1983/84 as the Toffees reached both the League Cup and FA Cup finals, though Curran played in only one of those cup matches, the FA Cup semi final win over Southampton at Highbury – five years after he played in the League Cup semi-final for the Saints. He played in nine league games in 1984/85 as Everton lifted the First Division title, but left that summer to join Second Division Huddersfield Town. After 36 appearances and 8 goals for the Terriers, Curran had a short spell at Athens-based Greek side Panionios prior to joining the Tigers.
Curran spent the rest of 1986/87 season at Sunderland before his career fizzled out due to knee problems, with short spells at Grimsby and Chesterfield. In fifteen years he amassed 81 goals in 475 first team appearances – a great haul for a mercurial but hard working wide player.
Curran managed Goole Town for three years between 1989 and 1992, then had a short spell in charge of Mancunian side Mossley. He then went into the property trade before coaching youngsters at Barnsley, Rotherham and Doncaster in the early 2000s.
Date/Place of Birth: 20 March 1955, Kinsley
Hull City First Game: 11 October 1986, Derby County A (Division Two), 31 years, 205 days old
Hull City Final Game: 1 November 1986, Brighton & Hove Albion A (Division Two), 31 years, 226 days old
Doncaster Rovers (1973-1975), Nottingham Forest (1975-1977), Bury (1977, loan), Derby County (1977-1978), Southampton (1978-1979), Sheffield Wednesday (1979-1982), Sheffield United (1982-1983), Everton (1982-1983, loan), Everton (1983-1985), Huddersfield Town (1985-1986), Panionios (1986), Hull City (1986), Sunderland (1986-1987), Grantham Town (1987), Grimsby Town (1987), Chesterfield (1987)
Hull City Record
Career: 6 apps, 1 goalsTerry Curran
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