What with the ways of the continent crewing its way into football culture in the last decade, the footballing ‘hardman’ is a character that only belongs in the echoes of time judging from Premier League squads of current. No one quite encapsulated this perceived image quite like former Hammers defender Julian Dicks.
Born in 1968 in Bristol England. Dicks began his career at Birmingham City FC at the age of 14 years old under an apprenticeship contact. He was impressive and climbed the ranks at the club before finally earning a spot on the main team and earned his debut in 1985.
He played for Birmingham City FC for three years after which he moved to West Ham united, a club that he would eventually go on to become an undeniable icon.
He had two stints at the club. The first one beginning 1988-1993 before moving to Liverpool for the 1993-1994 season and finally going back to West Ham for the 1994-1999 seasons. He has claimed in recent years that he never wanted to go to Liverpool for the 1993-1994 season.
Having a a reputation as a ‘hard’ footballer, and he was famous for his tough tackling and consequently he was nicknamed the Terminator. He was also known for his wanting and reckless behavior. Adding to the fear he reverberated among the opposition, was a penchant for hitting the ball ruddy hard with his left foot.
This penalty against Manchester United in 1997 possibly being the finest example of such left peg.
Julian Dicks would later seek out a career as a professional golfer. He began playing golf at the age of 22 during his injury time. At the age of 27, he was playing at scratch and even shared the same coach as the pro golfer Colin Montgomerie (Scottish golfer who has won 8 European tours). He eventually stopped golfing due to a recurrent knee problem. The same knee problem forced him to retire from football at a relatively young age of 29. A knee problem incidentally brought about by a two-foot tackle by a certain Dennis Wise in 1990.
After retirement, Dicks ventured into football management where he has managed Wivenhoe Town, Grays Athletic, Sealand, West Ham United Ladies and currently serves as the first-team coach at West Ham United. He also runs a pub.