This is an article taken from the December Edition of The Fisherton Informer and written by Richard Nash. Year-long subscriptions are now available for the popular publication, details are available by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Copies can also be purchased from the History Book Shop (by the Fisherton Mill).
Alan Peter Charles Green was born on 19 April 1951 in Fordingbridge. We are cheating a little here as Fordingbridge is a few miles over the border in Hampshire, but Alan was raised in Woodfalls and became one of Salisbury (City) Football Club’s all-time great strikers.
His professional career was however short lived. In 1968 he signed for AFC Bournemouth but, despite scoring regularly for the reserves, couldn’t get a look in with the first team, where the legendary duo of Ted MacDougall and Phil Boyer were playing up front. In the summer of 1972 Alan moved on to Mansfield Town, then playing in the Fourth Division. He played in all of the club’s pre-season friendlies, performing well and being rewarded with a first team place for the opening fixture of the season, at home to Northampton Town.
During the first half he again played well, and laid on an assist to Frank Wignall for the only goal of the game. However, around ten minutes before half-time Alan felt a tremendous pain in his chest, arms and throat.
He continued with difficulty until half-time before staggering up the tunnel to the dressing room, where he collapsed with a heart attack. He was discharged after a month in hospital but his career as a professional footballer was over after 45 minutes. Mansfield honoured his contract for a year and Bournemouth arranged a testimonial match against Leicester City, but with a young son and a daughter on the way, Alan was somewhat daunted by the future.
Working as a Co-Op insurance agent, after a couple of years Alan was encouraged by his doctor to resume football at a lower level. Returning to his home area he joined Salisbury, then in the Southern League, initially on a month-to-month contract. We haven’t noted non-league appearances and goals in our previous pen-pictures but feel we are justified in including the figures for Salisbury’s legendary ‘Alan Green – Goal Machine’: 136 goals in 270 games over two spells either side of a period as player-manager with Andover (where he scored 41 goals in 85 games).
Training hard and feeling well Alan thought the ‘heart attack’ must have been a misdiagnosis and tried to get back into full-time football, having trial periods with Swindon Town, Millwall and Torquay United. He was offered a contract by the latter but the Football Association would not accept his re-registration having previously accepted an insurance pay-out. He finished his career with periods at Basingstoke Town and Woodfalls. Alan is still involved with the modern Salisbury FC, having worked as commercial manager and match day organiser of hospitality. He is a strong advocate of Walking Football.
Cover photo from https://dreamsofvictoriapark.wordpress.com/