West Hartlepool, County Durham born inside right or right half Joe Readman began his football career with Wheatley Hill Alliance in 1921 from where he joined Bolton Wanderers in 1923, spending 1923-24 on the books at Burnden Park without making Bolton’s first eleven. He joined Third Division (South) club Bournemouth & Boscombe Athletic in the 1924 close season, making his Football League debut at Plymouth Argyle that October, playing at centre forward, and he scored his first two goals in their next match in a defeat at Norwich City. However having lost his place in February 1925, he didn’t return to The Cherries’ first team until January 1926, and in March he scored a hat-trick in a win over Northampton Town at Dean Court.
Readman again scored a treble the following season, bagging all three goals in a win at Charlton Athletic in October 1926, but after 20 goals in 50 appearances he joined Brighton & Hove Albion in the summer of 1927, where he failed to establish himself, making only 6 appearances in their 1927-28 campaign, but he was then signed by Second Division Millwall in the 1928 close season, for whom he made frequent as opposed to regular appearances over three seasons, scoring a career best 12 goals in their 1930-31 campaign as Millwall finished 14th in the division for a third season in a row.
After 21 goals in 59 appearances he transferred to Mansfield Town in the 1931 close season ahead of Mansfield’s inaugural Football League season, scoring in their first ever League match, a 3-2 win over Swindon Town at Field Mill that August. Readman missed only 3 matches during their first campaign and was a regular for a further season before joining Kent League club Ramsgate in the summer of 1933 after 14 goals in 75 appearances for The Stags. Readman joined Ramsgate Press Wanderers in 1934 before his eventual retirement from playing.
NB the photograph was taken before the FA Cup tie between Walsall and Mansfield Town at Fellows Park on 26th November 1932. Walsall won the match 4-1. In the image Readman stands behind outside right George Raynor.