Leeds United F.C. History
Leeds United F.C. History : Foreword
1919-29 - The Twenties
1930-39 - The Thirties
1939-46 - The War Years
1947-49 - Post War Depression
1949-57 - The Reign of King John
1957-63 - From Charles to Revie
1961-75 - The Revie Years
1975-82 - The Downward Spiral
1982-88 - The Dark Years
1988-96 - The Wilko Years
1996-04 - The Rollercoaster Ride
2004-17 - Down Among The Deadmen
100 Greatest LUFC Players Ever
Greatest Leeds United Games
Players' Profiles
Managers' Profiles
Leeds City F.C. History
Leeds City F.C. Player and Manager Profiles
Leeds United/City Statistics
Leeds United/City Captains
Leeds United/City Friendlies and Other Games
Leeds United/City Reserves and Other Teams

Carter: Horatio Stratton (Raich)

1953-1958 (Manager Details) (Manager Details)

Born in Hendon, Sunderland on 21st December 1913, Horatio Stratton Carter, was universally known as "Raich" and nicknamed The Silver Fox for his grey hair and wily play, and was one of the greatest inside forwards ever produced by England, an ice cool player who always seemed to be the one pulling the strings and making things happen. He had won every honour the English game had to offer by the age of twenty-four and, even though his managerial feats never equalled his extraordinary playing achievements, he was still good enough to help Leeds United regain their First Division status in 1956. He was the son of Robert Carter, who played for Port Vale, Fulham and Southampton before he suffered a serious head injury and was forced to retire in 1910 at the age of twenty-nine. As a young boy Carter was a fan of Sunderland and was a regular visitor to Roker Park. Carter's hero was Charlie Buchan, Sunderland's elegant inside-forward. Buchan also paid occasional visits to the Ocean Queen, the public house run by his father. Raich Carter was a talented sportsman and played football and cricket for his school in Hendon in Sunderland. In one match for his school he scored one hundred and eleven runs in twenty-five minutes. Carter was even a better footballer and on 23rd April 1927, he played for England schoolboys against Wales. Carter, the smallest boy on the pitch, was only thirteen years and four months old at the time. Carter was a great success and he retained his place in the team the following year. Robert Carter, who had never fully recovered from his head injury, died on 14th March 1928. His wife, Clara Carter took over the running of the Ocean Queen. Ten days after the death of his father, Raich Carter played for England against Scotland. Carter's Schoolboy International career was completed when he captained England against Wales at Swansea. He scored two goals in England's 3-2 victory. At the age of fourteen, Johnny Cochrane, the Manager of Sunderland, proposed that Carter should sign for the club as an amateur until he could sign professional at seventeen. His uncle, Ted Carter, a detective sergeant in the local police force, instructed him to reject the offer and instead arranged for him to be apprenticed as an electrician with the Sunderland Forge and Electrical Company. When he reached the age of seventeen a friend arranged for Carter to have a trial with Leicester City. On 27th December 1930, Carter played at outside left for Leicester reserves against Watford. He had a poor game and Willie Orr, the Leicester manager, told him he was too small to play football and needed to build himself up physically. He returned to the Sunderland Local League football with Whitburn St Mary's, Sunderland Forge and Esh Winning, who played in the Northern Amateur League. During the summer of 1931 he was invited by Clem Stephenson to join Huddersfield Town. However, he decided to accept the offer made by Johnny Cochrane, the Manager of Sunderland. This included a 10 signing on fee, 3 per week plus 1 for a reserve team appearance. This was far better than the 9 shillings he was earning as an apprentice electrician. He turned professional on 1st November 1931. Carter made his senior bow for the Roker side two months before his nineteenth birthday in the 1932-33 season and went on to score six goals in twenty-four appearances in the First Division that season. He was capped at full level for the first time by England in 1934, in the 3-0 win against Scotland at Wembley. Carter made outstanding progress in the Sunderland and England sides and became the youngest man ever to captain a League championship winning team when he led an ageing Sunderland side to their first title win in twenty-three years in 1936, aged just twenty-two. He was the League's joint top scorer with thirty-one League goals during the title-winning season and scored a further three in the cup run, including the winner in the final, despite his primary responsibility being to run the midfield. It was a momentous season for Sunderland and Carter as they finally put an end to the championship dominance of the glorious Arsenal team of the Thirties. The Gunners had won the title for the previous three seasons, but Sunderland were simply unstoppable that year, winning the championship by a clear eight points. One crucial game on the way to glory was the home game with the reigning champions on 28th December 1935. Sunderland ran out 5-4 winners in an extraordinary tussle which saw Carter hit their last three goals. Carter was again the leading light when he scored a last minute winner in the Charity Shield battle between the two teams in October 1936 and the day belonged to him again the following May. After marrying his sweetheart, Rosie, at the end of April 1937, Carter had only spent a few hours with her before leading out his beloved Sunderland for the FA Cup Final against Preston North End. The Lancashire side took the lead in the thirty-eighth minute, but seven minutes after half time Bobby Gurney equalised from a Carter corner. Twenty minutes later Carter gave Sunderland the lead and soon afterwards laid on Sunderland's third before receiving the trophy from the Queen. Carter believed in doing everything with a certain amount of style. He was now twenty-three and had the football world at his feet, but his glorious career was put on hold by the onset of Second World War in 1939. During the conflict he served in the RAF and appeared as a guest for Derby County whilst helping to rehabilitate injured airmen at RAF Loughborough. He was probably at his peak during the war years and added seventeen unofficial caps and eighteen goals to his meagre official total of thirteen internationals and seven goals. He also played four times for the Football League and twice for the League of Ireland. Some of those caps were gained after the war and he played his final game for England in 1947 as they beat Switzerland 6-0 at Highbury. In his time with England Carter proved the ideal partner for the brilliant winger, Stanley Matthews. Unsettled at Sunderland, who after a disagreement had put Carter on the transfer list, he moved on to Derby County permanently in December 1945 for a fee of 8,000. In Football League in peacetime he played two hundred and forty-five matches, scoring one hundred and eighteen times. At Derby, he formed a dynamic partnership with Irish international Peter Doherty, who had served with him at Loughborough, and they helped the Rams to an FA Cup Final success over Charlton Athletic in 1946. Carter didn't manage to score in the 4-1 Wembley win, but he was the club's top scorer with nineteen, playing thirty-three League games. With the Cup win he became the only player to gain a winner's medal on either side of the Second World War. After scoring thirty-four times in sixty-three games for Derby, in March 1948, Third Division side Hull City made a shock move for thirty-five year old Carter. The Yorkshire club were then managed by the charismatic and dictatorial Major Frank Buckley, who had enjoyed success and headlines before the war when he had built Wolves into a First Division power. Buckley put 6,000 of Hull's money up to secure a player who was still marvellously gifted. Carter also became Buckley's assistant and a couple of months later he took over as Player-Manager when Second Division Leeds United lured away the Major to lead their promotion drive. Carter's debut on 3rd April 1948 came too late to help Hull's faltering promotion bid and they eventually finished fifth, but he was undoubtedly the star of the Third Division and was able to demonstrate all of his skills on the field. He proved himself an astute and able manager and led the club to the Third Division North championship in 1949. The following November he paid Leicester City 20,000 for their twenty-two year old inside forward Don Revie. The attraction of playing with one of his schoolboy heroes really appealed to Revie, who had first caught Carter's eye during a match between the two clubs earlier in the season. Among Carter's other buys was former Stoke and England centre half Neil Franklin. Carter went on playing until 1953, but recognised much sooner that he was nearing the end of his playing days. He had seen enough in Revie's play to believe he might be his ideal replacement as Hull's playmaker. The two played together in the Hull forward line and Revie loved every minute of learning from the master. He admired most Carter's ability to find space on the pitch, attract the ball like a magnet and always having the time and assurance to play the killer ball. Revie learnt much from Carter and was inspired by the way he ran the game. They tended to play in the same way, however, and did not really gel. Revie had to adapt into a deeper half back position and Carter didn't rate Revie's time at Hull was a success and thought maybe he was expecting, too much, too soon. Hull's form was inconsistent. Franklin sustained a cartilage injury and in September 1951 Carter quit Hull after a dispute with the directors. He retired to run a confectionery shop in Hull and a month later Revie was off to Manchester City and eventual England honours after a 25,000 deal. In the absence of Carter, Franklin and Revie, Hull City struggled and spiralled down the table. Carter was persuaded to come back for the tail end of the season and led the club in their successful fight against relegation before retiring. He had scored fifty-seven goals in one hundred and thirty-two League appearances for the Tigers, taking his final Football League playing record up to two hundred and eighteen goals in four hundred and fifty-one games. In January 1953, the Silver Fox was back, at the age of almost forty, making a comeback with Cork Athletic in Ireland and inspiring them to an Irish Cup win. Following that success he answered the call of the Leeds United board and took over as Manager from Major Frank Buckley for a second time. Carter inherited a Second Division side which had come close to promotion several times under Buckley. They had an undoubted star in John Charles, but had financial difficulties with little money available for buying new players, despite Buckley's business acumen. In Carter's first season, Leeds finished tenth, exactly the same as in Buckley's final year, but Charles had a remarkable time of it, hitting a club record forty-two goals in thirty-nine League games. Carter had a self confidence that some of the players at Elland Road felt bordered on arrogance. A dressing room row following a bungled free kick routine that cost Leeds a goal during a 5-3 defeat at Bury early in 1954-55 made Captain Tommy Burden decide that he'd had enough: "Carter was blaming the goalkeeper Jack Scott. I thought 'This isn't fair' so I turned round and said, 'You're the one who's bloody well to blame.' We fell out. I think Raich suffered from thinking that there weren't many better players than he." Burden, who had regularly made the marathon five hundred mile round trip to matches at Elland Road from his home in Somerset for more than six years, was transferred to Bristol City. He was not alone in finding the new Leeds manager hard going. Jack Charlton, too, was unconvinced of Carter's abilities: "Raich Carter wasn't a coach, and he didn't employ coaches. Everyone respected him as a great player of the past, but he didn't understand that you might need help to work on your game. Maybe Raich was such a good player that he didn't understand how things that came easily to him might be difficult for other people. The only training we used to do at Elland Road in those days was to run down the long side of the pitch, jog the short side, sprint the long side, and so on. We used to have five-a-side and eight-a-side matches on the cinder surface of the car park. But no one ever coached you, there was nobody you could talk to about your game, we never went out and practiced free kicks or corner kicks or anything like that. We never really had any team talks, and we never had a run down on the opposition. Leeds United wasn't what I would call a professional club in those days. You trained in the morning, you went home - nobody bothered what you did the rest of the day." "Carter was very opinionated," says John Charles. "He had the view 'I do it this way, so you do it this way, whichever way I say.' He wouldn't let you argue. He was a nice man but he loved himself. He would take the credit for what you'd done." Yet Carter made sure that he developed Charles' potential to the full, and gave him some valuable coaching and insights on how to improve his game. The big Welshman continued to prosper under Carter's leadership and in 1956, after going very close with a fourth position finish in 1954-55 the two of them led Leeds United to a promotion triumph, as runners-up to Sheffield Wednesday. They started well enough back in the First Division, with a five goal first half in the opening fixture against Everton at Elland Road, but when they lost forward Albert Nightingale through injury in the second half a vital cog had disappeared and, after they had achieved a very creditable eighth spot, they finally sold the irreplaceable Charles at the end of the season, reaping a world record 65,000 from Juventus, but their form after that inevitably suffered. Carter maintained he was given less than half of the Charles money to find a replacement and Leeds finished the 1957-58 season in a disappointing seventeenth place. Despite the promotion success and all Carter's pleadings of inadequate funding, the Leeds directors declined to extend the manager's contract when it came up for renewal in May 1958. He was devastated and the move came as a surprise to most of the football world. It was a bitter and contentious time for the club and Carter, who understandably felt hard done by. He stayed away from the game for a while, but could not resist its draw for long and was appointed Manager at Third Division Mansfield Town in January 1960. He couldn't prevent their relegation at the end of the season, but after two seasons of struggling, they returned to the Third Division in 1963 after finishing fourth. Carter wasn't there to see the final triumph, however, as he left to manage Middlesbrough, then in Division Two, in January 1963, taking over from Bob Dennison. The Ayresome Park club were in decline after the loss of goalscoring wonder boy Brian Clough to North East rivals Sunderland in 1962 and Carter struggled to improve matters. His dealings on the transfer market were disappointing. He allowed promising players like Alan Peacock and Cyril Knowles to leave the club and did not buy wisely with the money. He ended his association with football after Middlesbrough had been relegated at the end of the 1965/66 season and returned to Hull to run a sports department in a local store. He later ran a credit business in Hull. He suffered a stroke in September 1994, and passed away at his home at Willerby, near Hull, aged almost eighty-one, on 9th October 1994. The Raich Carter Sports Centre in Sunderland, opened in 2001, was named in his honour. He has a road in Hull, that forms part of the A1033 road, named after him. The opening game at the new KC Stadium between Hull City AFC and Sunderland A.F.C. in December 2002 was played for the Raich Carter Trophy. Carter also played cricket for Derbyshire in 1946 and for Durham in the Minor counties league. Raich Carter also had another claim to fame. After researching their family tree, it seems a relative of Carter discovered that he was related to Captain James Cook. Captain James Cook turned out to be Raich's great, great, great uncle. The family connection story was covered by the Sunderland Echo.

CompetitionPlayedWonDrawnLostForAgainst
League210904971362320
F.A. Cup7025816
Total217905176370336