Leeds United F.C. History
Leeds United F.C. History : Foreword
1919-29 - The Twenties
1930-39 - The Thirties
1939-46 - The War Years
1947-49 - Post War Depression
1949-57 - The Reign of King John
1957-63 - From Charles to Revie
1961-75 - The Revie Years
1975-82 - The Downward Spiral
1982-88 - The Dark Years
1988-96 - The Wilko Years
1996-04 - The Rollercoaster Ride
2004-13 - Down Among The Deadmen
100 Greatest LUFC Players Ever
Greatest Leeds United Games
Players' Profiles
Managers' Profiles
Leeds City F.C. History
Leeds City F.C. Player and Manager Profiles
Leeds United/City Statistics
Leeds United/City Captains
Leeds United/City Friendlies and Other Games

Irwin: Joseph Denis (Denis)

1982-1986 (Leeds Player Details)(Player Details)

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Born: Cork, Republic of Ireland: 31-10-1965

Debut: v Scunthorpe United (a): 16-01-1984

5’8” 11st (1983)

Irwin was developed at Turners Cross College, Cork and represented Ireland Schools. He joined Leeds in February 1982 and Captained both the Northern Intermediate League and Central League sides before breaking into the senior ranks, after signing professional on 3rd November 1983. Irwin made his debut for Leeds at the age of eighteen having come through the youth and reserve teams. Eddie Gray developed the young right back into a solid player over the next two years, but under Billy Bremner he was released. He won Irish Youth honours and three Under-Twenty-One caps before moving to Oldham Athletic in a £60,000 deal on 22nd May 1986. His headed own goal, which gave Newcastle United a 1-0 home win in 1983-84, completed a unique double as the Geordies had won the League game on the opening day of the season with an own goal by Martin Dickinson. He played in Oldham’s 1990 Littlewoods Cup Final team, which lost to Nottingham Forest, and was chosen for the Republic of Ireland “B” team on 27th March 1990 in a 4-1 win over England "B" at Turners Cross, Cork, in which he was substituted by former Leeds teammate Terry Phelan after fifty-nine minutes. On 20th June 1990 he was transferred to Manchester United for £625,000. He made one hundred and sixty-six starting League appearances, and one from the bench, for Oldham scoring four goals and had also scored three goals in nineteen League Cup starts and made thirteen starts in the F.A. Cup and five in other games. He made his debut for the Old Trafford team on 25th August 1990 in a 2-0 win at home to Coventry City. Remarkably consistent, he collected the first of his full Eire caps against Morocco in September 1991 and featured in the 1994 World Cup after establishing himself as a regular in Jack Charlton’s side. He was also firmly entrenched at Old Trafford where his cool, unflappable style made him the only member of the squad to play in all matches of the 1993-94 double-winning campaign. He also won a Premiership winners’ medal in 1992-93, a European Cup-Winners’ Cup medal in 1991, FA Cup Winners’ medal in 1995, League Cup Winners’ medal in 1992, after being a loser the previous year to Sheffield Wednesday, and added a second Premiership and FA Cup double to his collection in 1996. There was another double in 1999, and the Inter-continental Cup winners’ medal, two more EPL championship medals in 2000, and 2001. He made three hundred and fifty-seven starts in the League and twelve from the bench, scoring twenty-two times and thirty-three goals in five hundred and thirty-two games overall, including eighteen as a substitute, for Manchester United before leaving for Wolverhampton Wanderers on 23rd July 2002. Irwin was awarded a testimonial game by Manchester United aginst their City neighbours on 16th August 2000 at Old Trafford. Irwin made his final appearance for Manchester United in the last League game of the season at Old Trafford against Charlton Athletic on 12th May 2002, which ended in a 0-0 draw. For his final game as a Manchester United player, Alex Ferguson awarded him the captain's armband. Irwin joined Wolves, coincidentally at the same time as his former Manchester United teammate Paul Ince made the move to the West Midlands club, having previously been at Middlesbrough. After Wolves won promotion to the EPL in 2003, Irwin was applauded by the Manchester United supporters when he walked onto the pitch at Old Trafford, despite the fact that he was playing for the opposition. Wolves were relegated at the end of the 2003-04 season, and the thirty-eight-year-old Irwin then announced his retirement from playing. He made seventy-three starts and two substitute League appearances for Wolves, scoring twice. He also started two F.A. Cup ties, three other games and made one start and one as a substitute in the League Cup for Wolves. He ranks as one of the best defenders allowed to leave Elland Road. Since 2004, Denis Irwin has been back at Old Trafford working as a presenter at MUTV. Irwin was capped fifty-six times for the Republic of Ireland between 1990 and 1999, and scored four goals. He also played for his country at Schoolboy, Youth, Under-Twenty-one, Under-Twenty-three and “B” level. His international career ended when manager Mick McCarthy dropped him from the starting eleven and controversially asked one of the most accomplished and respected professionals in the game's history to "Go out and prove himself". After retiring he became a presenter for MUFC TV and also appeared as a pundit on RTE TV.

AppearancesGoals
League 721
F.A. Cup 30
League Cup 50
Full Members' Cup 20