Morris, one of the members of the “Famous Five”
Chester forward line has sadly died at the age of 71.
In 52 league and cup games during the 1964/65 season
Elfed, along with Jimmy Humes, Mike Metcalf, Hugh Ryden
and Gary Talbot scored 138 of the team’s 141 goals.
Elfed was the outside left in this prolific line-up
and contributed 26 of the record-breaking total as all
five players passed the 20 goal mark. Elfed’s
total of 69 Football League goals places him fourth
in the list of all-time Chester scorers and is the highest
total for a winger.
Elfed started his football career
with his hometown club, Colwyn Bay, where some impressive
performances attracted the attention of Crystal Palace
who offered him a three month trial. Although he failed
to win a contract with the London club he signed as
a professional for Wrexham in May 1960 after scoring
four goals in his first reserve team match for the Welshmen.
The tall winger made his Football
League debut for Wrexham, at Millwall, in March 1961
but after only 9 league appearances moved to Sealand
Road during the summer of 1962 for £750.
After featuring for the Cheshire County
League team, Elfed made his Chester debut in a 1-0 home
win over Rochdale in April 1963. He scored his first
goals for the club later the same month, netting twice
in a 3-0 victory at Hartlepools. The following season
Elfed scored eight times in 24 league games but his
career took off in 1964 when he firmly established himself
at outside left over Stan Bennion and Garth Lee.
Throughout the 1964/65 season the
“Famous Five” forward line terrorised Division
Four defences but this commitment to attacking football
came at a cost as an exposed backline meant that goals
were conceded as fast as they were scored and no real
promotion challenge emerged. However it made for a thrilling
campaign and amongst Elfed’s valuable contribution
was a hat-trick in a 6-2 win over Aldershot and one
of the goals in a 6-1 win over arch-rivals Wrexham.
He was also a member of the team that was narrowly beaten
2-1 by Manchester United at Old Trafford in the FA Cup
form attracted the attention of a number of clubs including
Sheffield United and Birmingham City but he remained
at Sealand Road where he received a call-up to the Wales
Under-23 squad the following year. Although he failed
to make the final Welsh team he ended the 1965/66 campaign
as leading goalscorer at Chester with 24 league goals
and won a Welsh Cup runners-up medal after Peter Hauser’s
team were beaten in the final by Swansea Town.
As Chester’s fortunes faded
over the next two seasons Elfed struggled to maintain
his goalscoring form and after Hauser was sacked in
February 1968 he was allowed to sign for Halifax Town
the following month.
His stay at the Shay was brief and
after returning to North Wales he was appointed player-manager
at Caernarvon Town and also went on to play for Bethesda
Athletic, Llandudno Borough, and Colwyn Bay. Elfed also
managed Colwyn Bay in the 1970s and remained closely
involved with his hometown club where he later acted
Away from football Elfed was a keen
bowler and took a keen interest in the exploits of the
reformed Chester FC. One of his last visit’s to
the Deva Stadium came two years ago when the “Famous
Five” were reunited for the final time before
the game against Bamber Bridge (pictured below, Elfed
on the left).
Talking about his former colleague
goalkeeper Dennis Reeves recalls: “Elfed had a
very good left foot and was always working on his fitness.
In his early days he suffered from asthma and would
stay behind for extra training to build up his strength.
He had this knack of scoring goals from the far post
by hanging back and running in late to catch out defenders.”
Grenville Millington, chairman of
the Chester former Players Association added: “Ellfed
was a true legend of Chester Football Club not only
for his goalscoring exploits but also for his enthusiastic
support for the club.”
Everyone at Chester FC send out their
deepest condolences to Elfed’s family and friends.
The picture above shows Elfed (on
right) celebrating Les Jones scoring in the 4-2 win
over Wrexham in 1965/66.