Whilst never being fancied ahead of England name-stay Greame Le Saux during the Late 90’s, Andy Hinchcliffe can be considered one of England’s most underrated wing backs.
A ‘confidence’ player in the extreme, Hinchcliffe had pace to burn and a deadly left peg. His biggest handicap (as it were) would always been an unwelcome habit of being perennially injured.
Born in Manchester in the late 60’s, the former Everton and Wednesday favourite began his career with the Citizens. Establishing himself as the side’s first choice leftback, Hinchcliffe’s Man City highpoint came when getting on the scoresheet during his sides famous 5-1 thumping of rivals Manchester United.
Perhaps having reservations over the flying wing backs lack of defensive sensibilities, Howard Kendall soon sold his speedy wide player to Colin Harvey’s led Everton side for Neil Pointon and 200,000. The deal bemused many City fans, what with the players positional flexibility (he was also a decent midfielder) and his raw potential.
Whilst crucial ligaments would hinder his progress (taking him out for an entire season), it was with the Toffees that the Manchester born footballer would enjoy the most fruitful 8 years of his career. The highlight of course being on the winning side during Everton’s 1-0 win over Man Utd in the FA Cup final – to this date Everton’s last trophy win. Kendall would later establish his distaste for the left back’s qualities by taking over from Joe Royal in 1998, and then selling Hinchliffe all over again – this time to Sheffield Wednesday.
Just prior to the move Hinchcliffe made his England berth, starting for Glenn Hoddle’s side during a 3-0 away win to Moldova during the qualification stage for the 1998 World Cup.
The player would spend another four years with the Yorkshire side before retiring in 2002 due to an unsuccessful operation on his left knee. Whilst former left-back now operates as a footballing expert for Sky Sports, his talents live on through respected Finnish composer Osmo Tapio Räihälä was compsoed a piece in order of the former Toffee’s wing back, titled Hinchcliffe Thumper — tha’ Bloody Intermezzo.