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Len Badger

Personal information
Full nameLeonard Badger
Playing positionRight-Back

     Home | Football | Len Badger

Leonard (Len) Badger (born June 8, 1945 in Tinsley Park, Darnall, Sheffield) was an English football player who played for Sheffield United between 1962-1976 in the position of right-back.

Badger was born and brought up in the Tinsley Park area of Sheffield. He was an England schoolboy international who served his apprenticeship at Bramall Lane, and progressed through the junior ranks at Sheffield United, before making his league debut for the Blades against Leyton Orient at Bramall Lane on April 26, 1963. He played seven times for England Youths, thirteen times for England Under-23s and for the Football League side. Had he not been a contemporary of George Cohen and Keith Newton, Len would have undoubtedly won many full England caps. He shared with Alan Woodward the dubious distinction of being widely regarded as the best player in his position at the time never to win a full international cap.

His stylish full-back displays, meant it was not long before he took over as captain and, at the time, he was one of the youngest skippers in the league. Badger’s left-back colleagues of the early and mid-sixties included Graham Shaw and Bernard Shaw, but it was the arrival of Ted Hemsley in 1968 that provided him with his most fruitful partnership which continued through one of United’s most successful post war periods from 1969-1972.

His attacking instincts, along with those of Hemsley, showed well as United just failed to win promotion in the 1969-70 season. Badger was an ever present in the Division Two promotion winning side of season 1970-71, and although he failed to find the net in that particular season, he will be best remembered for buccaneering runs and crosses from the right-wing and for his occasional thunderous shot from 25 yards or more.

In his time with United he made 457 league appearances with seven goals. On January 1, 1976, he joined Chesterfield. He played for two seasons for the Spireites making 46 appearances.

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