Latchford was born in Kings Heath, Birmingham. He was transferred from Birmingham City to Everton for £350,000, a British transfer record at the time (Howard Kendall and Archie Styles were transferred to Birmingham City as part of the same deal, with Birmingham being paid just £80,000). At Everton, Latchford was the top scorer for six successive seasons. He scored 30 goals in the 1977–78 season, winning a £10,000 prize offered by a national newspaper for the first footballer to reach that number in a single season. During the mid-seventies, Latchford was widely considered one of the top English forwards of his generation. He earned his first full cap for England in a World Cup qualifier against Italy in 1977. In April 2006 a book was published telling the story of his 1977/78 season. Co-written with journalist Martin O’Boyle, the book supports Everton’s former players charity.
The closest he came to a winner’s medal at Everton was as a finalist in the League Cup in 1977. Latchford made 268 appearances (3 as substitute) for Everton scoring 138 goals. After a guest stint in Australia for Brisbane Lions in 1981, scoring 4 goals in as many appearances, Latchford left Everton for Swansea, newly promoted to the top tier of English football, scoring a hat-trick on his debut for the Swans. He scored 35 goals in 87 league appearances during his three years at Swansea, meaning that – as at Everton – he averaged a goal nearly every other game.
Latchford later also played for Dutch club NAC Breda (15 Appearances – 13 Goals), Newport County and finally Merthyr Tydfil before retiring as a player in 1987.
During his time at Everton, he was the club’s leading post Second World War goalscorer with 138 goals, a record he held until 1989 when Graeme Sharp exceeded Latchford’s tally. By the time Latchford left Everton, only Dixie Dean (pre Second World War) had scored more goals for the club in history.
- Full Name: Robert Dennis Latchford
- Position: Forward
- Date of Birth: 07.02.1948
- Birthplace: Birmingham
- Nation: England
- Full Caps: 12
- Major League Career
- 1968-74, Birmingham City (160/68)
- 1974-81, Everton (236/106)
- 1981-84, Swansea City (87/35)
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