World Cup Swans: Cliff Jones
As the 2018 World Cup draws closer, the official website takes a look back at the players who have turned out for the Swans and played on the biggest stage of all.
Today, we focus on Cliff Jones.
Cliff Jones was one of the greatest wingers of his generation.
Born in Swansea in 1935, Jones’ career began with his hometown club, where he made just under 200 appearances in all competitions.
He then went on to enjoy a hugely successful decade at Tottenham Hotspur, with whom he won five major honours including a league and cup double in 1961, as well as the European Cup Winners’ Cup two years later.
Jones is also one of only 38 players to have earned more than 50 caps for Wales, and his tally of 16 goals remains the seventh-highest on the Dragons’ all-time list.
AT THE SWANS
Initially an inside forward, Jones was just 17 years old when he made his debut for the Swans against Bury in October 1952. He scored his first goal for the club against Leeds United just two games later.
He was converted to a left winger during the 1953-54 season and it proved to be an inspired move with his lightning pace causing havoc for full-backs.
Jones also boasted a good eye for goal and hit double figures in three of the following four campaigns, notably scoring a hat-trick against Bristol Rovers in December 1957.
Overall, he made 193 appearances in all competitions in SA1, scoring 54 goals, before Tottenham signed him in February 1958 for £35,000 – then a record fee for a winger.
AT THE WORLD CUP
Jones was named in Jimmy Murphy’s 22-man squad for Wales’ first and only appearance at the World Cup finals in 1958.
He played in the 1-1 draws with Hungary and Mexico and the stalemate against hosts Sweden.
He also played the full 90 minutes of the play-off showdown with the Hungarians, as Ivor Allchurch and Terry Medwin struck to give Wales a 2-1 victory.
Jones then featured in the quarter-final defeat against Brazil, where a 17-year-old Pele scored the only goal of the game to break Welsh hearts.