Wayne Talkes: An appreciation


Southampton Football Club is saddened to learn of the passing of one of its former players, Wayne Talkes. Here, club historian Duncan Holley remembers his contribution...

Wayne Talkes was London-born but Isle of Wight raised, which is how he signed apprentice forms for Southampton Football Club in 1967.

That same year, he came on as a substitute in a Combination Cup game against Arsenal, thus becoming, at 15 years and 180 days, the youngest-ever post-war debutant for the Reserves.

He had to wait until the last game of the 1971/72 season for his first-team debut, and the next season he threatened to get more regular football when he made five straight starts to end the 1972/73 campaign, but his career at The Dell petered out around the time Ted Bates handed over the managerial reins to Lawrie McMenemy and he moved to Bournemouth.

Wayne, who has sadly passed way, aged 68, was a stylish, intelligent, probing midfielder, but at Dean Court, after only five games, he badly injured an ankle, which he had originally damaged in an England schoolboy trial and Wayne knew that it was unlikely to further stand up to the rigours of the professional game and so he initially moved into a job with the Post Office and then into marketing/sales with Eden Vale and then as an accounts manager with Palmer & Harvey, while turning out for the likes of Totton, Brockenhurst, Basingstoke, Midanbury and AC Delco.

Hampshire is full of local footballers who on social media have been recalling their playing days alongside Wayne with great fondness, for not only was he a hugely respected colleague on the pitch, he was also a very popular coach as well as being “a lovely guy”.

A keen golfer and member of Corhampton Golf Club, Wayne leaves behind his wife, Linda, their daughter Ruth and a son, Ollie, who played alongside his father at AC Delco.