Advertisement

  1. ITV Report

Coventry City legend Ernie Hunt dies aged 75

Ernie Hunt was known for his his 'donkey kick' goal. Credit: BPM Media

Coventry City legend Ernie Hunt has died aged 75.

The former Sky Blues striker was known for his ‘donkey kick’ goal, scored against Everton in 1970.

Team-mate Willie Carr gripped the ball between his legs from a free-kick before flicking it up to Hunt, who volleyed home spectacularly.

Landing in the far corner, the goal was a landmark moment in English football.

The Coventry duo's inventiveness caused the FA to outlaw similar goals at the end of the 1970/71 season – but Hunt did receive the inaugural ‘Goal of the Season’ award for his effort.

Ernie Hunt was a much loved player. Credit: BPM Media

In his later years, Hunt was a prominent figure within the Coventry City Former Players’ Association.

Vice-chairman Billy Bell led the tributes to the popular character.

“He was much-loved and respected by all the players.

He was fabulous with his past, his history – and especially the donkey kick with Willie Carr.

Ernie was an outstanding character and a great singer. He always sang Moon River at the Casino and got the whole crowd going on the numerous occasions he came to Legends Day

– Billy Bell, Vice-chairman, Coventry City Former Players’ Association
Hunt returned to the West Country after his retirement. Credit: BPM Media

Born Roger Hunt, he later changed his name to Ernie to avoid confusion with the Liverpool striker of the same name.

Hunt began his career with Swindon Town, signing for his local side in 1957, while he working for British Rail.

He became the club’s youngest-ever player when he made his debut two years later, aged 16.

Making over 200 appearances for the Robins, Hunt was top scorer at the County Ground for four consecutive seasons, firing his side to the 2nd Division, before leaving to join Wolves in 1965.

He repeated his scoring feats at Molineux, grabbing 20 goals as Wolves were promoted to the 1st Division in 1967. A brief move to Everton saw Hunt arrive at Highfield Road in 1968.

Scoring 51 goals in 173 games for Coventry, the striker started every game of the Sky Blues’ sole European adventure in 1970/71 – and even managed to grab a consolation goal in Munich, before Coventry’s famous victory over Bayern in the return leg.

He left the club in 1973 before winding down his career in non-league.

He returned to the West Country after retiring and held several jobs, including managing a pub.