It was announced today that former Manchester City star Denis Law has been diagnosed with Dementia. Law had two spells with City in the 60’s and 70’s and spent the majority of his career across the road at Old Trafford, where he made over 400 appearances.
Here, we take a look at the career of one of the best strikers ever to grace the English game.
The Scottish striker arrived at Maine Road in March 1960, for what was then a British transfer record of £55,000 from Huddersfield Town. He made 91 appearances for the Terriers, scoring 19 goals before his move to Maine Road. However, after just one full season in sky blue, Law moved to Italian side Torino for another record fee of £110,000, having scored 25 goals in 50 games for the blues.
Law spent just one season in Italy before Matt Busby eventually got his man by signing the Scot for another British record of £115,000. Busby had tried to sign Law from Huddersfield, but the blues beat him to the striker’s signature.
Law went on to great success at United, spending 11 seasons at Old Trafford and scoring 237 goals in 404 appearance for the reds, whilst collecting a glut of silverware in the process, including winning the Ballon d’Or in 1963.
The striker returned to Maine Road in 1973 on a free transfer, and will always be remembered by City fans for scoring ‘that’ backheeled goal which sent United into the second division. In truth, results elsewhere confirmed United’s relegation, even if Law hadn’t intervened, but no one, including Law, was to know at the time. After spending so many years at Old Trafford, Law’s immediate reaction was one of disbelief, thinking he had condemned his old team.
That goal and subsequent win triggered a terrible run for City at the home of their neighbours, who went 27 matches at Old Trafford without a win. The goal was also one of the last Law would score. The following season, he made 2 appearances for City, scoring against Sheffield United at Bramhall Lane, with his final game before retiring coming in a 2-1 home victory over Oldham Athletic.
A Scottish international, Law made 55 appearances for the national side, scoring 30 goals, including a goal in Scotland’s 3-2 victory over England in 1967, less than a year after England won the World Cup.