|An RAF navigator during the war, the full-back was released by first club Burnley and made a name for himself at Lancashire neighbours Rochdale before Chesterfield snapped him up.|
Leicester were impressed by his performances and forked out £8,500 of cup-run profits for his services. Luck was not on the Burnley-born defender's side, however, and he suffered a broken nose in his City debut, against Hull City in August 1949.
It thwarted his progress from the off and Kirkman failed to hold down a regular starting birth, eventually seeing him request a move away from the club in search of more first-team action. That move took him to Southampton but he failed to continue the promise showed during his days at Chesterfield.
A spell in football management at Exeter City as player-manager followed, and eventually brought his time in football to a close.
|1||27.08.1949||Hull City||Division Two (old)|
|No records to display.|
|1||27.08.1949||Division Two (old)||H||Hull City||1 - 2|
|2||17.09.1949||Division Two (old)||A||Cardiff City||4 - 2|
|3||19.09.1949||Division Two (old)||H||Chesterfield||0 - 1|
|4||24.09.1949||Division Two (old)||H||Tottenham Hotspur||1 - 2|
|5||01.10.1949||Division Two (old)||A||Bury||0 - 3|
|6||25.03.1950||Division Two (old)||H||Grimsby Town||1 - 0|
|7||01.04.1950||Division Two (old)||A||Swansea City||0 - 0|
|8||08.04.1950||Division Two (old)||H||Leeds United||1 - 1|
|9||10.04.1950||Division Two (old)||A||Plymouth Argyle||1 - 2|
|10||15.04.1950||Division Two (old)||A||Queens Park Rangers||0 - 2|
|11||22.04.1950||Division Two (old)||H||Preston North End||1 - 0|
|12||29.04.1950||Division Two (old)||A||Southampton||3 - 5|