Steve Thompson was a creative midfielder who played 155 games for Leicester City between 1991 and 1995. Twice voted Player of the Year, he was a key member of Brian Little’s team which reached three successive First Division Play-Off Finals and achieved promotion to the Premier League in 1994.
Having already played over 300 games for Bolton Wanderers, Steve’s career at Filbert Street got off to a good start when, on his debut at Oxford United, he scored a superb chipped goal in a 2-2 draw. Steve thrived at Filbert Street. He was a great admirer of Little’s man management skills and fitted well into the side, becoming central to it.
He appreciated the fact that there were good players in the squad and that although there were big characters at the Club, there were no egos. He felt that the team worked well together and that they never knew when they were beaten.
He appreciated that the training was good and that he had good staff around him. He also felt he learned a lot from first team coach John Gregory, who had also been a midfielder in his day. Following his debut in October 1991, Steve hardly missed a game until March 1994 when he suffered and Achilles injury.
Thompson played in the Premier League for the Foxes.
He was the creative force in the Leicester sides which lost to Kenny Dalglish’s Blackburn Rovers in the 1992 Wembley Play-Off Final for a place in the Premier League and to Glenn Hoddle’s Swindon Town the following year, when Steve scored a memorable equaliser to make the score 3-3 after being 3-0 down. Unfortunately, Swindon scored a late penalty to win the game 4-3.
The following year, although not fully fit following his Achilles injury, Steve came on as a 68th minute substitute in the Play-Off Final victory at Wembley over Derby County.
He was sorry to see Little leave Filbert Street three months into the following season, and although he featured in Mark McGhee’s sides, he moved to Burnley for a fee of £200,000 in February 1995.
After spells at Rotherham United and Halifax Town, Steve retired from playing in 2001. He has since had a lengthy coaching career at Blackpool, Huddersfield Town, Leeds United and Preston North End. He is currently head of recruitment at Oldham Athletic.
Speaking to us in 2019, Steve said that his best years as a footballer were at Leicester. City fans, who appreciated his quality and commitment, would certainly agree.
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