Ashington, Northumberland born inside right Jimmy Richardson represented East Northumberland in schoolboy football and won two England Schoolboy caps before joining Blyth Spartans in 1925. He was signed by First Division Newcastle United for £200 in April 1928 and made his Football League debut against Blackburn Rovers in September 1929, scoring in a 5-1 victory at St James’ Park. He also scored an FA Cup hat-trick against Clapton Orient in January 1930, but only established himself as a regular first teamer from the start of the 1931-32 season, playing 9 FA Cup ties that season as Newcastle went all the way to Wembley where they beat Arsenal somewhat controversially when Richardson crossed the ball back into the field and Jack Allen levelled the match for the Magpies. The referee ruled that the ball had not gone out of play, but photographic evidence later showed that the ball had crossed the line, Newcastle went on to win the FA Cup with another Allen goal in the second half.
Richardson was a regular scorer during his time at St James’ Park, and he won the first of his two England international caps in a 1-1 draw against Italy in Rome in May 1933, his second cap coming a few days later in a 4-0 win over Switzerland in Bern, with Richardson scoring twice.
Despite being a regular scorer for Newcastle, and scoring 12 League goals for them in 1933-34, they were relegated from the First Division at the end of the season and in October 1934 he joined Huddersfield Town for a fee of £4,000 after 49 goals in 149 appearances for The Toon. He then had exactly three years at Leeds Road, scoring 32 goals in 125 appearances for The Terriers before rejoining Newcastle United for £4,500 in October 1937, and scoring 4 more goals in 15 appearances for Newcastle before a move to Millwall in March 1938, again for £4,000. His 5 goals in 12 appearances before the end of the season helped The Lions win the Third Division (South) Championship, and he was a near ever present in the period leading to the abandonment of peacetime football due to the outbreak of the Second World War in September 1939. He played both sides of the War for Millwall, although of his 60 appearances only two, both FA Cup ties, came after the conflict. He scored 20 goals for The Lions in those games.
He finally joined Leyton Orient in January 1948 as player-coach, making 15 appearances before the end of the 1947-48 season. After hanging up his boots, Richardson served as an assistant trainer with Leyton Orient, becoming a trainer between June 1951 and June 1955. He then became the assistant trainer at Millwall from November 1956 for a short time, before being compelled to retire on health grounds.
In March 2003 his medal from the 1932 FA Cup Final sold in an auction at Christie’s for £6,462.