Had Arnold Sidebottom decided to stay in football, he would have been nothing more than a journeyman pro, as it was, his decision to focus on cricket was a wise one, eventually earning him an England call up, in addition to a wonderful career with Yorkshire.
Arnie, as he preferred to be known, first joined United as an amateur in 1971, turning professional a year later. He made his debut at Old Trafford against Sheffield United, in a 2-1 defeat in April 1973, and played 5 days later against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, where the young defender saw his side beaten again, this time 1-0. It was a difficult time to be breaking through, as United slid towards relegation, and he was to make only two more appearances in the top flight.
Never more than an average player, his main run in the side came as a deputy for the injured Jim Holton during the 74/75 Second Division season. He managed 12 league appearances, but never really looked comfortable. Although proficient in the air, the rest of his game wasn't up to standard, and he left for Huddersfield in January 1976. He later transfered to Halifax, in the Fourth Division, playing a single season before hanging up his boots to concentrate on cricket in 1979.
1973-1976 Manchester United 20 (0)
1976-1978 Huddersfield Town 61 (5)
1978-1979 Halifax Town 21 (2)
Born: Shawlands, Barnsley, Yorkshire. April 1st, 1954