Larry Carberry was a pacy and tenacious yet often delightfully constructive full-back who helped Ipswich Town lift the championships of the three top tiers of English football in the space of six seasons. The diminutive Merseysider was spotted by Alf Ramsey playing for Bury Town of the Eastern Counties League in the spring of 1956, and the Portman Road manager – who was to lead England to World Cup glory in 1966 – wasted no time in signing the stylish defender from under the nose of his home-town club, Liverpool.
Ramsey, a connoisseur of full-back play, having worn the No 2 shirt with distinction for Southampton, Tottenham and England, was the ideal mentor for Carberry, who climaxed 1956-57, his first professional campaign in Suffolk, by collecting a Third Division South title medal. Thereafter he was influential as Ipswich – guided inspirationally by Ramsey, who bought shrewdly and thought deeply – carried off the second-tier title in 1960-61.
To say the East Anglians were regarded as minnows in the top flight in 1961-62 was a colossal understatement, but they beat Burnley, Spurs and Everton to the League title, with Carberry an admirably consistent ever-present at right-back.
Ipswich lost Ramsey to England and were relegated in 1963-64, and Carberry, who had earned several selections for an FA XI, joined Fourth Division Barrow in 1965. Two years later he left, turning down Bill Shankly's invitation to become Liverpool's chief scout in favour of work as a docker, in which capacity he was immensely happy.
Lawrence James Carberry, footballer and docker: born Liverpool 18 January 1936; married (one daughter, three sons); died 26 June 2015.Reuse content