Frank O'Farrell

Frank O'Farrell
Personal information
Full nameFrancis O'Farrell
Date of birth (1927-10-09) 9 October 1927 (age 91)
Place of birthBlackpool, Cork, Ireland
Playing positionWing half
Youth career
Nicholas Rovers
Clapton Celtic
Western Rovers
Senior career*
1947–1948Cork United?(?)
1948–1956West Ham United197(6)
1956–1961Preston North End118(3)
National team
1952–1959Republic of Ireland9(2)
Teams managed
1965–1968Torquay United
1968–1971Leicester City
1971–1972Manchester United
1973–1974Cardiff City
1976–1977Torquay United
1981–1982Torquay United
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Francis "Frank" O'Farrell (born 9 October 1927) is an Irish former football player and manager. O'Farrell played as a wing half for Cork United, West Ham United and Preston North End. He made over 300 appearances in the Football League before joining Weymouth as player-manager. He went on to manage Torquay United (three stints), Leicester City, Manchester United, Cardiff City, Iran and Al-Shaab. He played for the Republic of Ireland national team, making nine appearances between 1952 and 1959.

Early life

Born in Lower Dublin Hill in Blackpool, a suburb of Cork, O'Farrell lived on Friars Road, in the Turners Cross area of the city. His grand-uncle was renowned bowls player John "Buck" McGrath.[1] He was raised a Catholic and attended Christ the King.[2][3] He played Gaelic football and captained the school team to its first trophy win in 1941.[4] He also played the association code for local teams Nicholas Rovers, Clapton Celtic and at Western Rovers alongside the brother of Noel Cantwell, with whom he would later reunite as a teammate at West Ham United.[1][5] At the age of 16, he started working on the railways and wanted to be a train driver, like his father.[6] He worked as a fireman on the Dublin–Cork railway line.[7]