Mike Summerbee

Mike Summerbee

Mike Summerbee played in the successful Manchester City side of the late 1960s and early 1970s.

He made his league debut playing for Swindon Town in 1959 at the age of 16. He made more than 200 appearances for the Wiltshire club, scoring 38 goals. In 1965 Manchester City manager Joe Mercer signed him for a fee of £35,000.

In his first Manchester City season Mike started every single match, the only Manchester City player to do so that season. Playing on the right wing, he was one of the most influential players in the Manchester City side which won four trophies in three seasons from 1968-70. Something of a practical joker, he was also known for a fiery temperament, a trait described by teammate Francis Lee as “retaliating first”.

Mike left Manchester City in 1975, moving to Burnley after making more than 400 appearances for City.

Over a five year period, which encompassed the 1970 World Cup he played for England eight times, making his debut against Scotland on 24 February 1968.

Mike ended his footballing career at Stockport County, where he was player-manager in the 1978-79 season.

Off the pitch, he has been involved with a number a business ventures with varying degrees of success, including a period where he co-owned a menswear business with George Best. Mike also starred in the cult film Escape to Victory alongside Sylvester Stallone, Michael Caine and Pelé.

Mike’s son, Nicky, is also a professional footballer, who followed in his father’s footsteps by playing for both Swindon Town and Manchester City. Mike’s father, George and uncle, Gordon, were both lower division players whose careers were affected by the outbreak of war.

Colin Shindler described the contrasting fortunes of the three generations in “Fathers, Sons and Football”.