Birthdate: 29 July 1963
Birthplace: Waterford, Ireland
Other clubs: Shamrock Rovers (1980-83), Leeds United (1989-91), Plymouth Argyle (loan 1989), Blackburn Rovers (loan 1990)
Bought from: Shamrock Rovers
Signed for LFC: £20,000, May 1983
International debut: 03.06.1984 vs. China
International caps: 15/0 - 1986
Liverpool debut: 10.11.1984
Last appearance: 21.01.1987
Debut goal: 10.04.1985
Last goal: 09.11.1985
Contract expiry: 28.07.1989
Win ratio: 60.2% W:59 D:24 L:15
Honours: League Championship 1985/86; FA Cup 1986
LFC league games/goals: 64 / 2
Total LFC games/goals: 98 / 3
Player profileYoung Beglin was destined for Arsenal when the deal mysteriously fell through, but only a few days later he joined Liverpool on a month's loan. Only ten days into his stay he became Bob Paisley's last-ever signing in May 1983. The 21-year-old got his big break in April 1985 due to Alan Kennedy's injury and even scored on his European debut with a bullet header in the semi-finals of the European Cup against Panathinaikos. The final in Brussels against Juventus, in which Beglin played, proved to be one of the blackest days in the club's history. Kenny Dalglish took over from Joe Fagan and initially Kennedy reclaimed his place with Beglin moved to the left side of midfield. Kennedy was allowed to move to Sunderland in September 1985 which showed how much faith was put in the promising Irishman. Beglin became Kenny's first-choice left-back for the rest of the season and played a major part in the boss' winning goal against Chelsea that won the title. The double was sealed against rivals Everton in the FA Cup final.
Beglin's Liverpool career came to an abrupt end when he suffered a horrific leg break against Everton on Goodison Park on 21 January 1987. "I knew it was bad. The play seemed to carry on for eternity for me, but it was probably just a few seconds. I looked down and I couldn't believe where my foot was, but I knew it was where it shouldn't be, adjacent to my shin. The pain was a nightmare." Paisley was horrified by Beglin's break: "I've seen one or two broken legs in going on fifty years in the game, but not one made me really wince, Jim's did." Beglin left Liverpool in the summer of 1989 to rebuild his career at Leeds United. Only a few days into the pre-season Beglin's right knee gave way. Another operation followed and then he was loaned out to Plymouth Argyle. He returned to Leeds and featured in a few games as the club conquered the Second Division. Beglin wasn't confident his knee would stand the strain but was desperate to get his career back on track. He was loaned out to Blackburn in October 1990 but after playing for Leeds on 19 December 1990 Beglin had to accept defeat. "My right knee was like a time bomb waiting to explode and eventually it did." He retired from the game in 1991 and has since become known a respected TV pundit,working for RTE, ITV and for 2015/16, BT Sport.
Appearances per season
A more detailed look at the player's appearances
|3||West Ham United|
|1||Brighton & Hove Albion|
Goals per season
A more detailed look at the player's goalscoring
"The injury he suffered at Goodison Park at the start of the year was as ill timed, as it was painful. It was painful to look at, never mind to experience. I've seen one or two broken legs in going on fifty years in the game, but not one made me really wince, Jim's did. Jim had a 30 game run in the first team behind him."
Bob Paisley on Beglin
"He was emerging as a Liverpool regular. It was his willingness to learn that had been the key factor in that emergence. He has a lot of other things going for him. He has the ideal build for a full-back. He's a strong kicker of the ball. He's naturally left footed. He has bags of guts and determination but above all, he wants to improve. And if they're prepared to listen, then we're prepared to tell them."
Paisley quite liked the look of the promising Beglin
"I wasn't really prepared for Ronnie Moran. I was taken as 13th man to Coventry City where Liverpool got beat 4-1. In the dressing room at half time it got pretty fierce and Ronnie was in the thick of it. At one point a cup did get thrown. I just thought 'Good God!'"
"I knew it was bad. The play seemed to carry on for eternity for me, but it was probably just a few seconds. I looked down and I couldn't believe where my foot was, but I knew it was where it shouldn't be, adjacent to my shin. The pain was a nightmare."
Beglin on his horror injury
Liverpool were 3-0 up vs. Panathinaikos in the European semi-final when Beglin scored:
"I managed to time my run and the ball hit me on the head and it flew into the top corner."
However, the owner of Beglin's local chip shop wasn't happy, as the Irishman later recalled:
"He had put quite a few quid on Liverpool to win 3-0 and was preparing to clean up before I scored. Next time I saw him he said he would never serve me again."
Beglin in Dec. 2004
"Joe Fagan pulled me aside on the pavillion at Melwood and said, ‘You’re playing tomorrow’. The emotions were incredible. From utter joy, to nervousness, and then desperation for three o’ clock."
Jim Beglin reflecting on his debut
"Jim's career was cut short by a dreadful injury sustained at Everton in a Derby match. He was an outstanding prospect. I remember him coming from Waterford. He was one of those players with a massive heart and massive will-to-win. He was so determined to make it in the big time. An outstanding left-back, good defensively with great positional sense and a sweet left foot."
Lawrenson on Jim Beglin
"The ball was running along the line and Bruce was shouting for me to let it run, but I was thinking, if I let it run, Trevor Steven’s going to get on it. Bruce timed his jump thinking I was going to do as he said, but in the meantime I’d put my foot on it and I had to shield it before he got back. He got a bit panicked about it all and once he’d got the ball, he called me something unrepeatable. I told him where to go and he hit me. I thought I’ve got to hit him back, then you realise the occasion, and of course, Bruce was a jungle fighter, so it was probably best to leave it."
Jim Beglin on his argument with Bruce Grobbelaar in the 1986 FA Cup final
It was left back Beglin who provided the killer through ball to Dalglish, and for the Republic of Ireland international winning the league title was one of the proudest moments of a career which was cruelly cut short through injury:
"We had been on a good run and we were confident we could do it. When we lost the derby 2-0 to Everton at Anfield it looked as if it would be tough for us to come back, but we then went on this fantastic run. They lost at Oxford on the same night we won at Leicester and so we then knew what we had to do at Chelsea.
One goal was enough and it just had to be Kenny who got it. It wasn't often I went up for a corner as it was always my duty to stay back, but for some reason even though our corner was cleared I had stayed up there. Chelsea just couldn't clear the ball and I remember Ronnie heading the ball towards me and I had my back to goal. All I wanted to do was help the ball on its way and I already knew Kenny was behind me. The rest is history as the top man controlled the ball on his chest and stuck it into the corner of the net.
For Kenny in his first season to win what turned out to be the double was just fantastic. To score the goal that won us the league was incredible. What a lot of people forget is Kenny brought himself back into the side after we had lost that game to Everton. With Kenny in the side his presence alone shook everybody up and there was more urgency and an edge to the team again. When he was in the team he just demanded higher standards and everything had to be sharp and precise."
Kenny Dalglish scored the winning goal for Liverpool when they clinched the double in the 1985/86 season
|Club||Season||Club rank||League apps||League goals||Total apps||Total goals|
|Shamrock Rovers||1980-1981||League of Ireland||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|Shamrock Rovers||1981-1982||League of Ireland||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|Shamrock Rovers||1982-1983||League of Ireland||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|Leeds United||1989-1990||England Second Division||19||0||20||0|
|Plymouth Argyle||1989-1990||England Second Division||5||0||5||0|
|Blackburn Rovers||1990-1991||England Second Division||6||0||6||0|