Hatters Heroes

Luton – The Legends Series – Adrian Alston

Image for Luton – The Legends Series – Adrian Alston

For the latest in our ongoing series covering those who have achieved legendary status among the support, we feature another former Luton figure who became a fans favourite.

Following on from those already covered – John Moore, David Preece, Mal Donaghy, Brian Lewis, Bruce Rioch, Fred Jardine, Brian Horton, Kevin Nicholls, Tony Read, Steve Foster, Mike Keen, Ian Buxton, Lars Elstrup, Peter Anderson, Graham French, Alan West, David Moss, Terry Branston, John Aston, Paul Futcher, John Ryan, Syd Owen, Marvin Johnson, Malcolm MacDonald, Bob Hatton, Steve Buckley,Chris Coyne, Ron Baynham, John Still, Jack Bannister, Ricky Hill, Chris Nicholl, Pelly Ruddock Mpanzu, Don Givens, Gordon Turner, Brian Stein, Jesse Pye, Raddy Antic, Joe Payne, Max Dougan, Alan Slough, Ray Whittaker, Dave Pacey, Milija Aleksic, Ron Davies, Sandy Davie John O’Rourke, Les Sealey, Bob Morton and Wally Shanks, Gordon Riddick, Billy Bingham and Herbert Moody

The latest ex-Hatter to be granted status in our legends hall of fame is Adrian Alston as nominated by Chris Winter.

As a teenager I can clearly remember Adrian Alston leading the line, an imposing figure but not one I’d, personally, classify as a legend, particularly as he only made 29 league appearances before moving to pastures new.

But, hero recognition is an individual thing and it is those differences that make our world such a unique and interesting place.

Alston rose to prominence in the 1974 World Cup ater Australia had, surprisingly qualified. His performances were such that options to take on his services were expressed by many German clubs, including Hertha Berlin, Hamburg and Eintracht Frankfurt.

Indeed, it looked like, at one stage he would sign on the dotted line for Hertha Berlin, enticed by, perhaps, a $40,000 signing on fee, but the deal was not to go through. Very late interest from Luton Town saw the Australian international sign for the Hatters.

But it wasn’t a spur of the moment decision made by Luton, they’d witnessed, first hand, his qualities when he’d played for Australia in a match against Luton Town, some four years earlier, with Alston notching the winner in a 2-1 victory.

However, it should be pointed out that Alston wasn’t actually born in Australia, in fact he was born in Preston, England, and it was with Preston where his career started. Unfortunately, his career didn’t progress as he’d hoped, up in Lancashire, and he chose to emigrate to Australia.

On signing for Luton Town, ahead of their return to the top flight of English football for the 1974/1975 season, Alston was to make quite an impression. Although the Hatters were relegated, Alston was joint top-scorer, along with Ron Futcher, with 8 goals.

But his Hatters career was to last just the one season, the Hatters were experiencing financial difficulties and after just 29 league appearances, with 8 league goals to his name, Alston joined Cardiff City with a fee of £20,000 being paid.

Later, Alston was to describe his move to Kenilworth Road as a terrible decision bemoaning that the clubs financial dificulties meant there were times when his salary wasn’t paid.

All in all, Alston made 31 appearances for the Hatters scoring 9 goals.

Later in his career, Alston was to move to the USA, joining Tampa Bay Rowdies but an injury curtailed his American adventure and he returned to Australia to take on a variety of managerial positions.

Adrian Alston – Mini Fact File

Name – Adrian Alston

Date of Birth – 06-February-1949

Place of Birth – Preston, England

Height – 6 Feet 0 Inches

Position – Striker

Youth Career – Preston North End

Playing Career – Fleetwood, South Coast United, St George, Safeway United, Luton Town, Cardiff City, Tampa Bay Rowdies, Canberra City

Internatonal Career – Australia

Managerial Career – Wollongong City, Corrimal Rangers, Port Kemba, Wollongong Wolves, Bulli

If you feel able to share any of your thoughts or memories on the Hatters career of Adrian Alston, please feel free to do so in the comment facility beneath this article.

If you can think of anyone who deserves nominating for coverage in this ongoing series, please drop their name into the comment facility beneath this article.

My thanks go to those who have already nominated faces from the past, they will all be covered, in time.

Next up in the series will be Reg Pearce as suggested by Trevor Powell.


Previous article by Mad Hatter

Luton Town – Recollections Of 1974-1975 – Liverpool (h)

Share this article

Welcome To My Tea Party!

1 comment

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *