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Former Cheltenham Town record signing dies, aged 80

26 May 2015

Scotsman Matt Carson, who became Cheltenham Town's record signing in 1958, has passed away in Australia at the age of 80.

Born on October 11, 1934 in Coatbridge, centre forward Carson joined the Robins for £1,250 from Albion Rovers in November 1958. He went on to play for Boston United, leaving Cheltenham in July 1960.

He made his Cheltenham debut at Barry Town in a Southern League North Western Zone fixture on November 15, 1958. His final appearance was at home against Gloucester City in the Gloucestershire Senior Challenge Cup final on April 27, 1960.

Like many of the Scotsmen who joined the Robins during the 1950s and 60s, Carson began his career in Junior football north of the border and played for Hozier Thistle Amateurs before joining Albion in Scottish League Division Two during March 1956.

A 6ft 1in front man, Carson made seven appearances in the remainder of the season, but established himself the following year with 29 goals in 36 league appearances as Albion finished fifth in the table. 

He remained at Cliftonhill for the following season, scoring 23 times from 35 starts in a struggling side and it was considered something of a coup when Cheltenham signed the 23-year old in November 1958 with a record of 57 goals from 86 appearances for Albion Rovers behind him.

Carson was given an immediate run in the team but was unable to settle and Lewin preferred the more mobile Alan Gibbs for the second half of the season.

The following season he was again given a series of starts in September and October but failed to convince despite a reasonable return of goals and was placed on transfer list, joining Boston United on trial for a month in February 1960 and returning to the Lincolnshire club at the end of the season.

Without a club for a few months during 1960/61, Carson returned to Cheltenham Town and appeared for the reserves before joining Kidderminster Harriers in July 1961.

He made a total of 23 appearances for the Robins, scoring 13 goals, later playing for Cheltenham-based club St Marks CA before emigrating to live in Australia.

Cheltenham Town would like to pass our deepest sympathies to Matt's family and friends.

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