A FORMER Wrexham AFC goalkeeper was recently awarded some historic league title medals for his time at Manchester United. 

Last week, United awarded two league championship medals to former keeper David Gaskell over half a century after they were won – marking the first of up to 18 former players due to receive missing medals.

Gaskell became United's youngest-ever player when he made his debut at the age of 16 years and 19 days in the 1956 Charity Shield against Manchester City. 

He moved to the Racecourse in 1969, where he spent four years with Wrexham.

The Leader: David GaskellDavid Gaskell (Image: Manchester United)

Under English Football League rules at the time, Gaskell, now 82, did not qualify for medals for the 1964/65 and 1966/67 title-winning seasons, after falling short of the minimum 14 appearances then required. 

The EFL has since lowered its criteria so that all players with five or more appearances for league-winning teams are entitled to recognition – and these new rules have been applied retrospectively to historic championships.

Working closely with the EFL, Manchester United has identified 18 players who are entitled to retrospective medals, including Gaskell.  

The process of awarding these began on Monday, June 19 at David’s home in Wrexham.


There to honour David’s contribution and present him with his medals were United legends Alex Stepney, who was a team-mate of Dave’s from 1966 to 1969, and Mickey Thomas, who joined Wrexham as an apprentice when Gaskell was a senior professional at the Welsh club.

Richard Arnold, Manchester United chief executive, said: “We’re delighted to have awarded these medals to David today in honour of his important contribution to two great title-winning teams, and we’re looking forward to presenting more in the coming weeks.

“It’s fantastic to see these players, who missed out on medals all those years ago, getting the recognition they deserve, and we appreciate the support of the EFL in making this possible.”

The Leader: L-R: Alex Stepney, David Gaskell and Mickey Thomas.L-R: Alex Stepney, David Gaskell and Mickey Thomas. (Image: Manchester United)

Alex Stepney, who made 539 appearances over 12 years at United, said: “It was a real privilege to be here with David when he received his medals. Any team that wins a title, especially in those days when we played 42 League matches, requires a strong squad.

"Players like David, who provided great cover for me during his later years at the club, were crucial to our success.”

Mickey Thomas added: “I owe David so much. He was a mentor to me at Wrexham, where I actually cleaned his boots as an apprentice. David provided me with the knowledge required to succeed in football. It means a lot to me to be here with him today and help present his medals.”