Mel Hopkins was born in Glamorgan, Wales in 1934. He was signed by Tottenham Hotspur at the age of 15, when spotted playing for his local boy’s club. He was taken on as an apprentice after just one trial. Mel Hopkins made his debut in January 1952 and won a League and FA Cup double in 1961. In 1959, he suffered a serious injury following a collision, smashing his nose and upper jaw, an injury which would keep him out of football for two years.
In total, Hopkins played 219 games for Spurs, before leaving for Brighton & Hove Albion in October 1964 for a transfer fee of £5,000. He scored 2 goals and played 58 games for Albion between 1964 and 1967.
A brief spell at Ballymena United was followed by a move to Bradford Park Avenue in January 1969, where he played 30 games, retiring in 1970.
Mel played for Wales between 1956 and 1963, earning 34 caps including playing for Wales at the 1958 World Cup in Sweden, where they lost narrowly to Brazil in the quarter-finals.