Cult hero Tony Richards: a prolific goalscorer who made an incredible impact upon joining the Valiants.
Rob Fielding writes…
Nowadays, Richards is widely regarded as a club legend by Walsall after becoming the club’s second-highest goal scorer with 185 goals.
However, he also enjoyed a notable cameo with the Valiants before it all came to an unfortunate end.
Richards was 29 when Freddie Steele signed him for a fee of £9,000. He only joined the club in March 1963 but ended up as the joint top-scorer for the 1962-63 season. Richards netted an incredible 13 goals in 14 games as Vale narrowly missed out on promotion.
Richards was top-scorer for a second, successive season in 1963-64 but not at quite such a prolific rate. He hit 13 goals in 34 games with his form disrupted with a leg injury in September.
However, it’s worth mentioning Richards’ goals up to September 1963. In 22 games he had managed to find the back of the net an incredible 18 times.
By now, Richards was picking a host of injuries including a damaging cartlidge injury. He never really recovered his early form and was released in 1966.
Nontheless, for a period of six months in 1963, Richards really did hit the goalscoring heights.
Sadly, Tony Richards passed away in 2010 aged 75 years of age.
Cult hero Tony Richards
Cult credentials: Goalscoring prowess