Two Liverpool footballers, neither red or blue, brought up in other camps!

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Going back in time you will surely find a number of players who never played in the first teams at Liverpool or Everton, but had a glorious football careers somewhere else.

The first player to mention of those going away is Dennis Mortimer. Mortimer will for many be recognized as the captain of Aston Villa. The player that lifted the European Cup and the football league trophy in two seasons early in the 80’s. Mortimer was born in Liverpool but never played for any of the Merseyside clubs. He spent most of his time in football at Villa and before Coventry City. He also had spells at Brighton and Birmingham, and playing on loan at Sheffield United.

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The other player on my list is Steve Coppell, picked up for a minor fee from Tranmere Rovers, by Tommy Docherty, at the time manager at Manchester United. Coppell started his professional career at Birkenhead club Tranmere Rovers, and again only played for the two clubs and despite being one of the finest wingers in the game, and a proven England international, never playing in his city of birth.

Coppell played for England, and made his debut in this remarkable win v. Italy, at Wembley in 1977. He went on to play in the Euro’s and World Cup. During his days at Manchester United he picked up a winners medal in the FA Cup (77) and ended runners-up in two other occasions (76/79).

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Mortimer and Coppell had a glorious football career and after retirement they moved in different directions in football. Coppell made the most out of an early opportunity to become manager at Crystal Palace being a popular man around Selhurst Park. He has stayed in management since 1984, being around at different clubs besides The Eagles. Done well, especially at Reading, taking them up to the highest level as he did with Crystal Palace. Coppell is today a manager in India with ATK.

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Mortimer has worked in football as well, mostly in a coaching capacity, working at West Bromwich Albion as one of his clubs during the days of Keith Burkinshaw and Ossie Ardiles. Mortimer also worked in media for a time and is one you would describe as one of the best players never to be capped by England. Mortimer received a honorary decoration by the University of Worcester for his “outstanding contribution to football”.

Watching Coppell play at Manchester United and Mortimer at Aston Villa was a thrill. Coppell a great winger who had to leave the game as early as the age of 29, and Mortimer doing a fantastic job, captaining Aston Villa to those amazing two titles.

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Later this picture shows Coppell as manager for Crystal Palace in that 1990 FA Cup final v. Manchester United. A thriller of a clash, first game ending 3-3 and then Sir Alex and his team were the strongest, winning 1-0 with that Lee Martin goal.

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