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Garth Crooks


Garth Crooks was born in 1958 in Stoke-on-Trent. His successful career as a footballer started with his debut for Stoke City in 1978. He moved to Tottenham Hotspur for a record fee in 1980. During his time at White Hart Lane he won the FA Cup in 1981 and 1982 followed by the UEFA Cup in 1984. He then played for Manchester United, West Bromwich Albion and Charlton Athletic. He retired from playing the game in1990, through injury, having scored over 200 goals.

Garth Crooks was awarded the OBE in the HM The Queen’s Birthday Honours List of 1999 for services to Football, specifically citing his ability to bring passion to football.

While playing professional football Garth studied Social Science and Politics and graduated from North London University. He later went to Kings College London to study Sports Law.  He applied his degree in politics by presenting the political programme Despatch Box Live on BBC2.

Garth spends considerable time discussing issues surrounding Social Inclusion Equity and Diversity.  A special advisor to the renamed European Human Rights Commission, formerly known as the CRE, Garth has addressed the European Parliament, European Commission and UEFA on racial discrimination in football. 

He became the first black Chairman of the Professional Footballers Association in 1988–1990 and is a trustee. He was invited by HRH Prince Philip to chair the Institute of Professional Sport in 1990. He was appointed by the Secretary of State in 1995 to the English Sports Council. In 2003 he joined the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Caribbean Board. 

He chaired the Football Foundation Grass Roots Advisory Panel for 5 years and was instrumental in creating the biggest and most successful football charity in the world. Garth is a Member of Sport England and serves on the Sports Lottery Panel.

Broadcasting and Media:

  • BBC broadcaster for 15 years
  • GLR Greater London Radio
  • Radio 5 Live
  • Late 1990’s : presenter of the political television show Despatch Box.  
  • Reporter for Match of the Day, Football Focus and Grandstand.
  • Covered 5 World Cups for the BBC (1982, 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002) including as Match Analyst.
  • Covered 2 Olympic Games (1996 and 2000)
  • Covered Commonwealth Games in 2002

Frequently asked to speak at sporting and corporate events, including as a keynote speaker, Garth’s presentation can include slides in Power Point format. He is equally relaxed meeting and talking with guests, answering their questions and sharing stories (even people without a specific interest in football as his background and interests are wide-ranging.)

Garth appears regularly as a pundit on Final Score and sometimes on Match of the Day in place of regular pundits Alan Shearer and Mark Lawrenson.

Garth occasionally interviews players for BBC Television after league football matches. He also names his “Premier League team of the week” each week on the BBC website.

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