Born in Cardiff on 27 March 1950, Terence (Terry) Charles Yorath, managed Swansea City on two occasions during the mid 80s and early 90s.
The former Gabalfa Primary, Cathays High School, and Cardiff Schoolboy footballer had joined Leeds United as an apprentice in 1965, and spent the most of his career with the club as a substitute, or as cover in midfield during a period in the game when United possessed the finest midfield in the First Division.
A combative, defensive midfielder, with good organization skills, he gained his first international cap in 1970 against Italy, after previously playing for Wales Schoolboy, Youth, and at U-23 level, and by the time he had played his last game for his country against Russia in May 1981, had captained his country in 42 out of the 59 internationals he had played.
His nine year period as a professional with Leeds United saw him make appearances during seasons 1968/69 and 1973/74 when the club won the First Division Championship, and in seasons 1969/70 and 1970/71 when the club were runners-up in the league.
He also played in three losing major Cup Finals, the 1973 FA Cup Final against Sunderland, the 1975 European Cup Final Against Bayern Munich and the 1973 European Cup Winners Cup Final against AC Milan.
Leaving Elland Road in 1976, he remained in the top flight with Coventry City and Tottenham Hotspur, before crossing the Atlantic in 1981 to turn out for Vancouver Whitecaps.
On his return to the UK, at the veteran stage of his career, Yorath joined Bradford City as a player/assistant coach. Before being persuaded by Swans Chairman Doug Sharpe to become the Swans manager in July 1986.
Shortly after chairman Doug Sharpe had won his High Court case, he offered the managerial position to Yorath, a position which was primarily a player managerial role, with a view to playing only in emergencies.
Taking over a side recently relegated to the Third Division, Yorath inherited a very young side, and had the experienced Chris Harrison, Tommy Hutchinson, Nigel Stevenson and Dudley Lewis to call on.
A tremendous start to his first season saw the Swans occupy a top three placing for the first half of the season, reach the fourth round of the FA Cup competition, only for injuries to take its toll.
In March 1987, Yorath was forced to include himself in the squad that played at the Molineux against Wolverhampton Wanderers, with defenders Melville, Lewis and Williams all sidelined.
Nevertheless, the following season (1987-1988) the Swans achieved promotion from Division Four, albeit from the Play Offs after a dramatic two-leg final against Torquay United.
The first leg at the Vetch saw the Swans claim a 2-1 win, before a pulsating 3-3 draw in the 2nd leg at Plainmoor, saw Yorath’s side win promotion to the Third Division.
His enthusiastic approach to management had alerted the Football Association of Wales, who offered him the role of manager of the Welsh National side for three matches in April 1988, replacing David Williams.
A position which was later made into a permanent post, combined with his managerial duties with the Swans. In February 1989, he left the Vetch Field to take over as manager at Bradford City, citing a desire to be closer to his family, who still lived in Yorkshire.
However, Yorath returned to the Vetch Field as manager in March 1990, replacing Ian Evans, lasting only 12 months in his second period at the Vetch Field, with chairman Doug Sharpe sacking him in March 1991, with relegation to the Fourth Division looming.
The following year he suffered a personal tragedy when his fifteen-year-old son, Daniel, collapsed and died of an undiagnosed heart condition.
During his five year reign as manager of Wales, the national side recorded impressive victories over Germany, Italy and Brazil, and came within one game of becoming the only home nation to qualify for the 1994 World Cup Finals.
His international pedigree was further enhanced between 1995 and 1997 when, as boss of the Lebanon national team, he helped them rise some 60 places in the FIFA World Rankings table.
Since returning to the UK, Terry has been involved in coaching roles at Huddersfield Town and Bradford City, before joining Sheffield Wednesday, initially as First Team Coach, before the start of the 2000/01 campaign, later becoming manager.
In November 2001, Terry was named as the new manager of Sheffield Wednesday, having taken on the job as caretaker when Peter Shreeves left.
After an initial promising start, he lasted less than a year, and at the end of November 2002 following a poor run of results, with the club also struggling financially off the field he was released from his position as manager.
He was made assistant to Peter Jackson at Huddersfield Town prior to the start of the 2003/04 season, and enjoyed instant success, as the club bounced back from the being relegated, by winning the Third Division Play Off Final at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff against Mansfield Town, winning 4-1 on penalties.
In June 2008, Yorath returned to football when he was appointed the Director of Football at Ryman League Premier Division side Margate, where his brother Dai and nephew Dean had both played.
On 21st November 2008, he was appointed Manager of the club for the rest of the 2008-09 season. He resigned as the Margate Manager on 24th September 2009 after a disappointing run of results, leaving Neville Southall in temporary charge of the team.
His daughter, Gaby, represented Wales at gymnastics in the Commonwealth Games and is well known to TV viewers as sports presenter Gabby Logan.
In 2017, ITV broadcast a documentary entitled ‘Terry Yorath: Life on the Edge’, which tells the story of Terry Yorath, who talks openly about the personal tragedies – and triumphs – that have shaped his life and sporting career.
The ‘Swansea Town/City Players A-Y’ book written by Colin Jones was an excellent reference guide for the information contained on this page. The information was reproduced with the kind permission of Colin.