Today's Birthdays

one click shows all of today's celebrity birthdays

Browse All Birthdays

43,625    Actors
27,931    Actresses
4,867    Composers
7,058    Directors
842    Footballers
221    Racing drivers
925    Singers
9,111    Writers

Get FamousLikeMe on your website
One line of code gets FamousLikeMe on your website. Find out more.

Subscribe to Daily updates

Add to Google

privacy policy

Famous Like Me > Footballer > H > Ray Houghton

Profile of Ray Houghton on Famous Like Me

Name: Ray Houghton  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 9th January 1962
Place of Birth: Glasgow
Profession: Footballer
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia

Ray Houghton ( Glasgow, January 9, 1962) was an industrious footballer best known for his spell with the last great Liverpool team of the 1980s and his goals in big international fixtures for the Republic of Ireland.

Houghton was brought up in Scotland but began his football career in London at West Ham United where he failed to make any impact. He moved on to Fulham on a free transfer in 1982 and it was there his name grew as a young, hardworking ballplayer in midfield.

He moved on to Oxford United where the career remained admired but still not spectacular, as if nobody at one of the game's biggest clubs was quite sure whether to take a chance on him. He scored the second goal in Oxford's League Cup final victory over QPR at Wembley in 1986, but it wasn't until another memorable appearance for Oxford that his break finally came. Meanwhile, he took advantage of his Irish roots to gain qualification for the Republic of Ireland football team under Jack Charlton, and earned his first cap in 1986.

At the start of the 1988 season, Houghton played a blinder at Anfield for Oxford against Liverpool who promptly offered £825,000 for him. The deal was done and Houghton took the place of Craig Johnston on the right side of Liverpool's midfield, unusually wearing the No.9 shirt which striker John Aldridge, his former Oxford team-mate who had made the Anfield move himself a year earlier, had asked not to wear because of the pressure of replacing Italy-bound goalscorer Ian Rush.

Liverpool coasted to the League title in 1988 with Houghton contributing with some fantastic displays as a marauding creator from the flank. He scored his share of goals too (though he was also renowned for missing great chances from close range) and contributed the first goal in the memorable, era-defining 5-0 win over Nottingham Forest which was later described as the performance of the century and was complimented by the game's greats such as Tom Finney and Michel Platini.

Houghton did his bit in the run to that season's FA Cup final too, scoring the winner in a hotly-contested fifth round tie at Merseyside rivals Everton and then clipping home a shot on the turn as Liverpool romped past Manchester City 4-0 in the quarter final. In the final, Liverpool lost surprisingly to Wimbledon and missed out on the "double" with Houghton putting in one of the game's more disappointing individual displays.

In the summer of 1988, Houghton was in the Ireland squad which had reached its first ever major finals, the European Championships in West Germany. The first group game was against England and it was Houghton who scored with an early looping header to win the game 1-0. It was his first goal for Ireland. However, they still failed to get through the group after a draw against the USSR and a defeat against eventual champions The Netherlands.

The following season, Houghton was again a regular as Liverpool battled towards another League and FA Cup "double", though they again would be denied. More important matters than football affected Houghton and his team-mates in April 1989, however, as the Hillsborough disaster claimed the lives of 96 Liverpool fans at the FA Cup semifinal.

Liverpool would win the Cup with a 3-2 victory over Everton but lost the League title in a decider at Anfield against Arsenal. The following year Houghton and Liverpool regained the title and Houghton was in the Irish squad which got to the quarter finals of the World Cup in Italy, where they were ultimately knocked out by the host nation.

Houghton picked up another FA Cup winners' medal with Liverpool in 1992 and then left for Aston Villa, with whom he won another League Cup in 1994. In the summer of that year, he again was in the Irish squad for the World Cup in the USA and once again was the goalscoring hero in a shock victory, looping a shot into the net to defeat Italy in a group game. Ireland went out to The Netherlands in the second round.

He played for Ireland until 1997, ending with 73 caps. His club career took in spells with Crystal Palace and Reading before he retired.

Houghton is now in demand as a pundit on the game, working for outlets such as RTÉ in Ireland and talkSPORT and Sky Sports in the UK.

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Ray Houghton