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Alvin Martin
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Personal information
Full name Alvin Edward Martin
Date of birth 29 July 1958 (1958-07-29) (age 51)
Place of birth    Bootle, England
Height 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Playing position Defender
Senior career1
Years Club App (Gls)*
West Ham United
Leyton Orient
469 (27)
017 0(0)   
National team
1981–1986 England 017 0(0)
Teams managed
1997–1999 Southend United

1 Senior club appearances and goals
counted for the domestic league only.
* Appearances (Goals)

Alvin Edward Martin (born 29 July 1958 in Bootle, Liverpool) is a retired English footballer who spent most of his career with West Ham United, as a defender.


Football career

Martin started out with Merseyside club Everton as a schoolboy, but left in 1973 after the Goodison Park club only offered him an apprenticeship on a part-time basis, stating at the time that he "would never kick a ball for them again". An unsuccessful trial later that summer with Queens Park Rangers was followed the very next day by one for West Ham United, where he was awarded a contract.

Martin went on to amass 586 first-team appearances for the Hammers in a successful 19-year career at Upton Park, in which he became one of only two players, along with Billy Bonds, to be awarded two testimonials.[1]

It was alongside Bonds in the centre of defence that Martin — nicknamed ’Stretch’[1] — enjoyed his most rewarding years, winning the FA Cup and Second Division winners medals in successive seasons, at the start of the 80s.

Martin was given his first England cap by Ron Greenwood, who brought him to West Ham as a 14-year-old, against Brazil at Wembley in May 1981. Injury ruled him out of the 1982 World Cup finals in Spain, but he was playing some of the finest football of his career when the next England manager, Bobby Robson, included him in his squad for the 1986 edition in Mexico. Martin played in the victory over Paraguay, but was surprisingly dropped for the next game, the quarter-final defeat by Argentina’s infamous ’Hand of God’. In total, he made 17 appearances for England.

Martin also achieved the rare feat of scoring a hat-trick against three different Newcastle United goalkeepersMartin Thomas, who was then injured, and outfield players Chris Hedworth and Peter Beardsley — in a Division One match in April 1986.[2]

After leaving West Ham, Martin had a brief spell with East London neighbours Leyton Orient, before managing Southend United for two years.

After retiring from management, he joined national radio station talkSPORT, while also being a regular pundit on Sky Sports TV football talk shows.


Martin's sons, David and Joe, are also footballers. David is a goalkeeper, whilst Joe is a midfielder.


External links



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