Merthyr Tydfil, Glamorgan born inside right Emlyn “Mickey” Jones began his football career with Dowlais in 1926 before joining hometown Third Division (South) club Merthyr Town as an amateur in February 1927, making his Football League debut against Walsall that September. After 4 goals in 23 appearances, such was the impression that he had made, he was sold to Bournemouth & Boscombe Athletic in February 1928, scoring twice in 6 appearances for The Cherries over the next month before being sold on again, this time to First Division Everton. He spent somewhat over a season at Goodison Park, but failed to break through into their first eleven and was released in June 1929, when he joined Southend United.
His career flourished at Southend and he was an ever present for The Shrimpers for three consecutive seasons. In October 1930 he scored a hat-trick in a 5-3 victory over Swindon Town at The Kursaal, and the following season he helped Southend finish third in the Third Division (South), narrowly missing out on promotion.
It was while at The Kursaal that he got to play at Wembley Stadium in unusual circumstances. Their away fixture at Clapton Orient’s Lea Bridge Road stadium was moved to Wembley Stadium as Orient’s ground had been closed following a bad injury to a Torquay United player resulting from the close proximity of the pitch barrier to the playing surface. While remedial work was carried out the East Londoners were forced to hire the Empire Stadium in order to stage two home games. The first resulted in an easy 3-0 win over Brentford in front of a healthy 8,000 plus crowd. However, the visit of Southend United attracted a crowd of only 1,916 (which must have looked very odd in vast stadium with a then capacity of 100,000) and Jones scored in a 3-1 defeat by Clapton Orient, albeit in a Third Division (South) fixture on 6th December 1930.
However he lost his regular place in The Shrimpers’ line up at the start of the 1935-36 season and played his last game for them in November 1935, having scored 30 goals in 246 appearances, before joining non league Northwich Victoria in 1936. After spells with Shirley Town in 1937 and Nuneaton Borough in 1938, he returned to Football League action with Barrow, making 3 first team appearances in the spring of 1939 before the outbreak of the Second World War finished his playing career.
Jones was one of five brothers who all played professional football, the others being Shoni (Aberdare and Ton Pentre), Ivor (Swansea, West Bromwich Albion and Wales), Bryn (Wolverhampton Wanderers, Arsenal and Wales) and Bert (who died fighting the Japanese in Burma in the Second World War). His son Ken (Swansea and became a well known sports journalist) and nephews Brin (Swansea, Bournemouth, Watford) and Cliff (Swansea, Tottenham Hotspur where he won the Double, Fulham and Wales) were also footballers.