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History of Football Project


John Simkin
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I will be producing material looking at different sources of information about the history of football. This includes cigarette cards.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fcigarette.htm

The first football cards appeared in 1896. These were black and white photographs. The first painted portraits appeared in 1906. These are some of the first examples of painted portraits of working class men. (Interestingly, portraits of cricket stars, who were always from the upper and middle classes, appeared ten years earlier.

I plan to produce pages on all the main clubs. My West Ham version can be found here:

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/FcigaretteWH.htm

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I work for the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, and am creating a website, supported by the FA, Premiership, PFA, Football Foundation etc. and due to be launched for this year's remembrance time - November.

‘The Glory Days’ will be very much an interactive website. It’s aimed particularly at lads who don’t do so well with traditional learning methods. The idea is to use football as a means to spark their interest – in the history of the two world wars, the contribution and sacrifices that so many men and women made, (perhaps even members of their own family) and the importance of remembering them with respect – which is, of course, what the Commonwealth War Graves Commission sets out to do.

In a lively and engaging way, we’ll be telling some of the stories of footballers who served and died, and some football-related war stories.

The site is not intended to be academic. It is created primarily to engage, entertain and inform. If some of our target audience then go on to further research as a result of what they’ve seen, then we’ll be doubly satisfied!

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I work for the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, and am creating a website, supported by the FA, Premiership, PFA, Football Foundation etc. and due to be launched for this year's remembrance time - November.

‘The Glory Days’ will be very much an interactive website. It’s aimed particularly at lads who don’t do so well with traditional learning methods. The idea is to use football as a means to spark their interest – in the history of the two world wars, the contribution and sacrifices that so many men and women made, (perhaps even members of their own family) and the importance of remembering them with respect – which is, of course, what the Commonwealth War Graves Commission sets out to do.

In a lively and engaging way, we’ll be telling some of the stories of footballers who served and died, and some football-related war stories.

The site is not intended to be academic. It is created primarily to engage, entertain and inform. If some of our target audience then go on to further research as a result of what they’ve seen, then we’ll be doubly satisfied!

This is very good news. As far as war deaths are concerned, Jack Rollin's Soccer at War: 1939-45 gives a fairly comprehensive list of league footballers killed in the conflict. I am having difficulty finding a list of First World War deaths. Do you know if a list exists. Last night I went through Paul Joannou's "The Black and White Alphabet: A Complete Who's Who of Newcastle United" (1996). The following players were killed during the First World War: Richard McGough, Thomas Rowlandson, Thomas Cairns, James Fleming, Thomas Goodwill, Charles Randall and Thomas Hughes. Stan Hardy was gassed and was not able to play again. Stan Allan died of influenza soon after he arrived back from the trenches.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/FWWinfluenzia.htm

Only one player, William Imrie, was killed in the Second World War. He served in the RAF and was killed in 1945. Jack Rollin lists Colin Seymour as being killed in the war but according to Joannou's book, he never actually played for the team.

I will be producing biographies of all these players.

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I went through my reference books on West Ham and Arsenal last night. They don’t actually cover the First World War as such but by reading all the relevant biographies it would seem that the following West Ham players were killed in action: Frank Cannon (France, February, 1916), Fred Griffiths (France, 30th October, 1917), William Jones (Serbia, 1918), William Kennedy (no date given). Two others, George Hilsdon and Fred Harrison were badly gassed.

The Arsenal books provide less information on the deaths of former players. However, these two were definitely killed on active duty: Dr Leigh Roose (1916) and Spencer Bassett (1917). Roose is a very interesting character and would make a good case-study.

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The Arsenal books provide less information on the deaths of former players. However, these two were definitely killed on active duty: Dr Leigh Roose (1916) and Spencer Bassett (1917). Roose is a very interesting character and would make a good case-study.

Leigh Roose is already one of my case studies, and he is a fascinating chap – someone, I forget who, is writing a whole book on his antics! He played for several clubs, all of whom claim him as their own! (Including Celtic for whom he only played one game, I recollect! ) That’s what I meant about the database being problematic!

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The records are incomplete but it is known that two Preston North End players, John Barbour and William Gerrish were killed on the Western Front during the war. Richard Bond was taken prisoner by the German Army and William Luke was so badly wounded his football career came to an end. Fred Osborn, Preston's leading scorer in the 1914-15 season, was wounded in 1918. Although he continued to play football he was unable to regain his place in the Preston side.

For further details see the Commonwealth Grave Commission site:

Walter Gerrish

http://www.cwgc.org/search/casualty_detail...casualty=748114

John Barbour

http://www.cwgc.org/search/casualty_detail...?casualty=44227

I have also created brief biographies at:

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/PRESTONbarbour.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/PRESTONgerrish.htm

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I plan to provide a detailed history of all the main clubs (up until 1945) with biographies of all the players mentioned in the text. This is what I have done on Preston North End. I think it would make a good local case-study:

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fpreston.htm

It includes 83 biographies and is cross-referenced with a whole range of possible topics such as women’s football, black players, the two world wars, the transfer system, international games, trade unionism, television coverage of football, transport, sponsorship, etc.

I plan to produce a page like this on all the major clubs.

See also these pages for possible in-depth studies:

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fblack.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fwomen.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/FWWfootball.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/2WWfootball.htm

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One possible school project is to look at West Ham and the First World War. My research suggests that four West Ham players were killed in action during the war.

Fred Griffiths, 6ft 2ins and 15 stone, was one of the largest goalkeepers in football. He was also one of the best and in 1900 played for Wales against both Scotland and England. Griffiths had spells with Millwall, Preston North End and Spurs before joining West Ham in 1902. Griffiths kept 13 clean sheets in 48 league appearances. After his retirement he worked as a coalminer at Shirebrook. He also trained the local football team before joining the British Army during the First World War. Griffiths was killed on the Western Front on 30th October, 1917.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/WHgriffiths.htm

William James Jones was another Welshman who played for West Ham and his country. He was a highly regarded wing half and won two international caps while captain of Aberdare. In September, 1901, Jones moved to Kettering Town. At the same time West Ham signed Peter Kyle, a very talented centre forward from Scotland. Both men failed to settle with their new clubs and Kyle was exchanged with Jones. On 3rd March, 1902, Jones became the first West Ham player to be capped for his country when he represented Wales against England at Wrexham. Jones joined the British Army during the First World War and while serving with the Royal Welsh Fusiliers he was killed in Serbia on 6th May, 1918.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/WHjonesB.htm

Frank Cannon became a solicitor's clerk in Hitchin after leaving school. He also played football for Hitchen Town. Described as a "dashing player and good dribbler with a fine shot" he joined Queens Park Rangers in 1907. He continued to work as a solicitor and after getting married lived at 87, Walsworth Road, Hitchin. He played at centre forward and scored a hat trick in a game against West Ham United in April 1908. His performance impressed Syd King and in 1909 he was persuaded to join West Ham. Cannon made his debut against New Brompton on 1st January, 1910. He scored in his next game against Norwich. However, he was only to play in another two games for the club. On the outbreak of the First World War Cannon joined the British Army and quickly reached the rank of sergeant major. Cannon, a member of the Essex Regiment, was killed on the Western Front on 15th February 1916 and is buried at Potijze Cemetery in Belgium.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/WHcannonF.htm

William Kennedy was a school teacher who played amateur football for local club Grays. He also appeared for Northfleet before joining West Ham United in 1910. He scored on his debut against Brighton & Hove Albion. Playing alongside Danny Shea he scored 4 goals in 10 league games that season. He also did well the following year scoring a hat trick against Brentford on 21st October, 1911. Unfortunately he suffered a serious knee injury in a FA Cup tie against Middlesbrough on 8th February, 1912. Kennedy was unable to play professional football again. On the outbreak of the First World War Kennedy joined the British Army. Lance Corporal William Kennedy, a member of the London Scottish Regiment, was killed on the Western Front on 13th October 1915. His body was never found and his name appears on the Loos Memorial.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/WHkennedyW.htm

Details of the deaths of these four men can be found at the Commonwealth Graves Commission website:

http://www.cwgc.org/search/casualty_detail...casualty=620811

http://www.cwgc.org/search/casualty_detail...asualty=1649735

http://www.cwgc.org/search/casualty_detail...casualty=157774

http://www.cwgc.org/search/casualty_detail...casualty=733442

West Ham also had two players, George Hilsdon and Fred Harrison were badly gassed and this brought their football careers to an end.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/WHhilsdonG.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/WHharrisonF.htm

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One possible school project is to look at West Ham and the First World War. My research suggests that four West Ham players were killed in action during the war.

Fred Griffiths, 6ft 2ins and 15 stone, was one of the largest goalkeepers in football. He was also one of the best and in 1900 played for Wales against both Scotland and England. Griffiths had spells with Millwall, Preston North End and Spurs before joining West Ham in 1902. Griffiths kept 13 clean sheets in 48 league appearances. After his retirement he worked as a coalminer at Shirebrook. He also trained the local football team before joining the British Army during the First World War. Griffiths was killed on the Western Front on 30th October, 1917.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/WHgriffiths.htm

William James Jones was another Welshman who played for West Ham and his country. He was a highly regarded wing half and won two international caps while captain of Aberdare. In September, 1901, Jones moved to Kettering Town. At the same time West Ham signed Peter Kyle, a very talented centre forward from Scotland. Both men failed to settle with their new clubs and Kyle was exchanged with Jones. On 3rd March, 1902, Jones became the first West Ham player to be capped for his country when he represented Wales against England at Wrexham. Jones joined the British Army during the First World War and while serving with the Royal Welsh Fusiliers he was killed in Serbia on 6th May, 1918.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/WHjonesB.htm

Frank Cannon became a solicitor's clerk in Hitchin after leaving school. He also played football for Hitchen Town. Described as a "dashing player and good dribbler with a fine shot" he joined Queens Park Rangers in 1907. He continued to work as a solicitor and after getting married lived at 87, Walsworth Road, Hitchin. He played at centre forward and scored a hat trick in a game against West Ham United in April 1908. His performance impressed Syd King and in 1909 he was persuaded to join West Ham. Cannon made his debut against New Brompton on 1st January, 1910. He scored in his next game against Norwich. However, he was only to play in another two games for the club. On the outbreak of the First World War Cannon joined the British Army and quickly reached the rank of sergeant major. Cannon, a member of the Essex Regiment, was killed on the Western Front on 15th February 1916 and is buried at Potijze Cemetery in Belgium.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/WHcannonF.htm

William Kennedy was a school teacher who played amateur football for local club Grays. He also appeared for Northfleet before joining West Ham United in 1910. He scored on his debut against Brighton & Hove Albion. Playing alongside Danny Shea he scored 4 goals in 10 league games that season. He also did well the following year scoring a hat trick against Brentford on 21st October, 1911. Unfortunately he suffered a serious knee injury in a FA Cup tie against Middlesbrough on 8th February, 1912. Kennedy was unable to play professional football again. On the outbreak of the First World War Kennedy joined the British Army. Lance Corporal William Kennedy, a member of the London Scottish Regiment, was killed on the Western Front on 13th October 1915. His body was never found and his name appears on the Loos Memorial.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/WHkennedyW.htm

Details of the deaths of these four men can be found at the Commonwealth Graves Commission website:

http://www.cwgc.org/search/casualty_detail...casualty=620811

http://www.cwgc.org/search/casualty_detail...asualty=1649735

http://www.cwgc.org/search/casualty_detail...casualty=157774

http://www.cwgc.org/search/casualty_detail...casualty=733442

West Ham also had two players, George Hilsdon and Fred Harrison were badly gassed and this brought their football careers to an end.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/WHhilsdonG.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/WHharrisonF.htm

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Manchester United lost three players during the First World War. This included the great Sandy Turnbull. While playing for Manchester City Turnbull won a FA Cup final medal in 1904. Two years later he moved to Manchester United and won the First Division championship in 1907-08 and 1910-11. Turnbull also scored the winning goal against against Bristol City in the 1909 FA Cup Final.

Turnbull also held left-wing views and along with fellow Manchester United players, Billy Meredith and Charlie Roberts, helped form the Association Football Players Union (AFPU). This action stopped him from being selected to play for Scotland. The same thing happened to Roberts who had got himself into the England team as a 22 year old.

Turnbull's football career ended with the outbreak of the First World War. Over a twelve year period he had scored 143 goals in 230 matches in the Football League. In 1915 Sandy Turnbull joined the Footballer's Battalion and was killed at Arras while fighting on the Western Front on 3rd May 1917. Turnbull

Two other members of the Manchester United team were killed on active service. Oscar Linkson, who played right-back for Manchester United joined the Middlesex Regiment and was killed during the Somme Offensive on 8th August 1916. Patrick McGuire, an amateur reserve player, also died on active service in 1916.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/FmanchesterU.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/MANUrobertsC.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/MANCmeredith.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/MANUturnbull.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/MANUlinkson.htm

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I plan to provide a detailed history of all the main clubs (up until 1945) with biographies of all the players mentioned in the text. One of the first clubs that I have tackled is Manchester United. I have only gone up until 1918 so far but intend to take it to 1945 over the next few months.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/FmanchesterU.htm

It includes 30 biographies and is cross-referenced with a whole range of possible topics such as the early history of football, amateur/professionalism, corruption, transfer system, FA Cup, Football League, football kits, cigarette cards, deaths on the pitch, football regulations, tactics, back footballers, racism, football wages, First World War, international games, trade unionism, goalkeeping, goal scorers, etc.

(1) I am interested in making contact with teachers who wish to use this material in the classroom. It is possible that I might be able to get you some funding for producing teaching materials on Manchester United.

(2) I would like to make contact with relatives of Manchester United players I have already or will write about in the future. In some cases, the players themselves may be still alive.

I can be contacted via the forum or by email: johnsimkin1945@hotmail.com

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I have started producing teaching materials to go with my Football Encyclopaedia:

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/ENCfootball.htm

The first lesson is for primary school children. I have tried them out on my 7 year old grandson. I would be grateful if anyone could try them out on their children. I will then use the feedback to improve the materials.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/1Fkits.htm

I have included an answer page here:

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/1FkitsA.htm

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  • 9 months later...
The Arsenal books provide less information on the deaths of former players. However, these two were definitely killed on active duty: Dr Leigh Roose (1916) and Spencer Bassett (1917). Roose is a very interesting character and would make a good case-study.

I have just completed my history of Arsenal: 1886-1950.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Farsenal.htm

Interestingly, Arsenal lost more players in the Second World War than in the First World War. Eight players registered with the club died between 1939-45. Bobby Daniel, a Flight Sergeant Gunner in the RAF, was killed on 23rd December 1943. Other Arsenal players in the RAF who died included Sidney Pugh, Harry Cook and Leslie Lack.

Bill Dean, a goalkeeper who got into the Arsenal team in 1940, told friends: "Well I have fulfilled my life's ambition, I have played for Arsenal." Dean died in action with the Royal Navy in March 1942.

Three Arsenal players who joined the Royal Fusiliers also lost their lives. Hugh Glass was drowned at sea in 1943, Cyril Tooze was killed by a sniper's bullet in Italy on 10th February 1944 and Herbie Roberts, a regular in Arsenal's team that won a hat trick of League Championships between 1932 and 1935, died of erysipelas in June 1944.

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Here is the first part of my proposed course on the history of football:

1. Social Class and the Origins of Football

The students could start the course by looking at the origins of football. The first documentary evidence of football being played is in 1170. It was a game that was played by working-class boys in the towns and peasants in the villages. Football was a constant concern of the authorities. It was first banned by Edward II in 1314. At the time he was trying to raise an army to fight the Scots and was worried about the impact that football was having on the skills of his archers. It seems that most young men took little notice of the order and his father, Edward III, reintroduced the ban in 1331 in preparation for an invasion of Scotland. Henry IV was the next monarch who tried to stop England's young men from playing football when he issued a new ban in 1388. This was ineffective and in 1410 his government imposed a fine of 20s and six days' imprisonment on those caught playing football. In 1414, his son, Henry V, introduced a further proclamation ordering men to practise archery rather than football. The following year Henry's archers played an important role in the defeat of the French at Agincourt.

Edward IV was another strong opponent of football. In 1477 he passed a law that stipulated that "no person shall practise any unlawful games such as dice, quoits, football and such games, but that every strong and able-bodied person shall practise with bow for the reason that the national defence depends upon such bowmen." Henry VII outlawed football in 1496 and his son, Henry VIII, introduced a series of laws against the playing of the game in public places.

Whereas the monarchy objected for military reasons, church leaders were more concerned about the game being played on a Sunday. In 1531 the Puritan preacher, Thomas Eliot, argued that football caused "beastly fury and extreme violence". In 1572 the Bishop of Rochester demanded a new campaign to suppress this "evil game".

After the execution of Charles I in 1649 the new ruler, Oliver Cromwell, instructed his Major-Generals to enforce laws against football, bear-baiting, cock-fighting, horse-racing and wrestling. Cromwell was more successful than previous rulers in stopping young men from playing football. However, after his death in 1660 the game gradually re-emerged in Britain.

However, football amongst the masses was unorganized and was barely tolerated by those in authority. Every so often men were fined in local courts for causing damage and social disorder while playing football.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fhistory.htm

2. Public Schools and the Development of Football

In the 18th century football was played by most of Britain's leading public schools. There is documentary evidence that football was played at Eton as early as 1747. Westminster started two years later. Harrow, Shrewsbury, Winchester and Charterhouse had all taken up football by the 1750s.

Football rules began to be codified in schools such as Eton (1815) and Aldenham (1825). Other schools such as Rugby, Marlborough, Lancing, Uppingham, Malvern and Cheltenham also introduced football to the school curriculum.

Thomas Arnold was appointed headmaster of Rugby in 1828. He had a profound and lasting effect on the development of public school education in England. Arnold introduced mathematics, modern history and modern languages and instituted the form system and introduced the prefect system to keep discipline. Arnold also emphasized the importance of sport in young men's education. Like most head teachers in public schools, Arnold believed that sport was a good method for "encouraging senior boys to exercise responsible authority on behalf of the staff". He also argued that games like football provided a "formidable vehicle for character building".

In 1848 a meeting took place at Cambridge University to lay down the rules of football. As Philip Gibbons points out in Association Football in Victorian England (2001): "The varying rules of the game meant that the public schools were unable to compete against each other." Teachers representing Shrewsbury, Eton, Harrow, Rugby, Marlborough and Westminster, produced what became known as the Cambridge Rules. One participant explained what happened: "I cleared the tables and provided pens and paper... Every man brought a copy of his school rules, or knew them by heart, and our progress in framing new rules was slow."

After leaving public school players established their own football teams. This included Old Carthusians, Old Etonians, Old Harrovians, Wanderers, etc. These clubs went on to dominate the early years of football.

English public schools also provided most of the players who appeared in the national team. For example, Westminster supplied ten England internationals between 1873 and 1894, whereas Old Etonians won a total of 39 England caps between 1873 and 1903.

The public schools also provided most of the early administrators, including, Arthur Kinnaird, Charles Wreford Brown and Francis Marindin.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fpublic.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Foldcarthusians.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Foldetonians.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Foldharrovians.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fwanderers.htm

3. The FA Cup and Social Class

In 1871, Charles W. Alcock, the FA Secretary, announced the introduction of the Football Association Challenge Cup. It was the first knockout competition of its type in the world. In the 1872 final, the public school team Wanderers beat the Royal Engineers 1-0 at the Kennington Oval.

The Wanderers, based in Battersea in London, went onto win the FA Cup five times in its first seven seasons, between 1872 and 1878. Old Etonians won the cup in 1879 and 1882. Old Carthusians, a team made up of former students at Charterhouse, defeated the Old Etonians in the 1881 final 3-0.

In 1882, Blackburn Rovers became the first provincial team to reach the final of the FA Cup. Their opponents were Old Etonians who had reached the final on five previous occasions. However, Blackburn had gone through the season unbeaten and was expected to become the first northern team to win the game. However, key players were injured and were unable to play. During the game another injury reduced Blackburn Rovers to ten men and they lost the game 1-0.

The following year Blackburn Olympic became the second provincial team to reach the final of the FA Cup. Over 8,000 people arrived at the Oval to watch Blackburn play Old Etonians in the final. Blackburn selected the following team: Thomas Hacking (dental assistant), James Ward (cotton machine operator), Albert Warburton (master plumber and pub landlord), Thomas Gibson (iron foundry worker), William Astley (weaver), John Hunter (pub landlord), Thomas Dewhurst (weaver), Arthur Matthews (picture framer), George Wilson (clerk), Jimmy Costley (spinner) and John Yates (weaver).

Old Etonians were appearing in their third successive FA Cup Final. An example of how the public schools had dominated the competition is that the captain of Old Etonians, Arthur Kinnaird, was playing in his ninth final. Blackburn Olympic won the game 2-1. No public school based team was to win the trophy again.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Ffacup.htm

4. Amateur Football

The Football Association was established in October, 1863. The aim of the FA was to establish a single unifying code for football. The first meeting took place at the Freeman's Tavern in London. The clubs represented were all products of football played in public schools. Percy Young, has pointed out, that the FA was a group of men from the upper echelons of British society: "Men of prejudice, seeing themselves as patricians, heirs to the doctrine of leadership and so law-givers by at least semi-divine right."

The FA insisted that football should remain a sport for amateurs. As Richard Holt and Dave Russell pointed out in the Encyclopedia of British Football: "They wished to create a new sporting elite where an upper-class code of honour could be combined with the middle-class virtues of exertion and competitiveness. Amateurs advocated participation over spectating and adopted an ethical code of sportsmanship, stressing respect for opponents and referees."

In 1871, the FA Cup was introduced. It was the first knockout competition of its type in the world. Only 12 clubs took part in the competition. Once again they were all run by former public school pupils. There were some working class clubs in existence but they did not enter for financial reasons. All ties had to be played in London. Clubs based in places such as Nottingham and Sheffield found it difficult to find the money to travel to the capital. Each club also had to contribute one guinea towards the cost of the £20 silver trophy.

Public school boys had also established football clubs in Scotland, Wales and Ireland. They also formed their own Football Association. Charles W. Alcock, the secretary of the FA, and Arthur Kinnaird, his friend from Cambridge University, who had been born in Scotland, arranged the first international football game to be played on the 30th November, 1872. From this date the England-Scotland match became an annual fixture.

Former public schoolboys lived in industrial areas of Britain. Their families were often owners of local factories or mines. In 1875 John Lewis and Arthur Constantine, who had played football at Shrewsbury School, formed Blackburn Rovers. At first the club was exclusively made up of men with public school backgrounds.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Famateur.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Ffa.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Ffacup.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Finternational.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fblackburn.htm

5. Scotland and the Rise of Professionalism

In the 1870s some public school educated factory owners began to consider the possibility of forming football clubs for their workers. There were several reasons for this. Some saw it as a means of publicizing their company. Others saw it as a form of social control. For example, Arthur Hills established West Ham United in response to a trade union dispute. He also used the club to further his temperance campaign.

Blackburn Olympic was established in 1877. Whereas Blackburn Rovers was mainly made up of players who attended public schools, the Blackburn Olympic team largely contained men from the working-class and was funded by Sidney Yates of the local iron foundry. The two clubs played each other on 15th February 1879 but Olympic, now one of the best teams in the country, won 3-1. It was the first sign that the working class was going to dominate football in the future.

Preston North End was originally a cricket club. On 5th October 1878, Preston North End played its first football game. Two years later the club decided to concentrate on football rather than cricket or rugby.

Major William Sudell, the manager of a local factory, became the secretary/manager of the club. Over the next few years Sudell was to create a revolution in football. He decided to improve the quality of the team by importing top players from other areas. Under the rules of the Football Association, Sudell was officially unable to pay these players. Therefore, he arranged to find these players well paid jobs in Preston. He also unofficially paid them a small fee for playing on Saturday. Sudell mainly recruited these players from Scotland. Over the next few years players such as John Goodall, Jimmy Ross, Nick Ross, David Russell, John Gordon, John Graham, Robert Mills-Roberts, James Trainer, Samuel Thompson and George Drummond joined the club. Sudell found these players by watching Scotland’s international games. Other secretary/managers followed Sudell’s example.

The Scottish Football Association responded by announcing it would only select players who played their football in Scotland. However, as they were so much better paid in England they were willing to sacrifice their international careers.

Other teams based in England’s industrial heartlands followed the example of Sudell and began importing Scottish players. This included Derby County, Blackburn Rovers, Sunderland and West Bromwich Albion whereas Aston Villa was virtually formed by two Scotsmen, George Ramsay and Archie Hunter, who had moved to the Birmingham area. They also brought in the Scottish way of playing football. The public schools had pioneered the individualistic “dribbling” game, whereas the Scots invariably came from a trade union background and placed their emphasis on the “passing” game. It is no coincidence that these Scots called it the “combination” system.

Blackburn Rovers decided to appoint a Scotsman, Tom Mitchell, as secretary-manager. These enabled him to recruit the best players available in Scotland and they became the best team in England, winning the FA Cup in 1884, 1885 and 1886.

The Football Association continued to select players who were clearly amateurs to play for England. As a result, England suffered a series of defeats against the better Scotland team.

On 17th March, 1884, the FA selected James Forrest, a 19 year-old player from Blackburn Rovers for the England team against Wales. The following year he was selected to play against Scotland. Scottish officials complained as they argued that Forrest was a professional. It seems they had discovered that he was being paid £1 a week for turning out for his club on a Saturday. Forrest was eventually allowed to play but he had to wear a different jersey from the rest of the team.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/FblackburnO.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fpreston.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fastonvilla.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fsunderland.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fwba.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fderby.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fsudell.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/BLACKBmitchell.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fscotland.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/BLACKBforrest.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/WHhillsA.htm

6. The Football League

In January, 1884, Preston North End played the London side, Upton Park, in the FA Cup. After the game Upton Park complained to the Football Association that Preston was a professional, rather than an amateur team. William Sudell, the club’s secretary-manager, admitted that his players were being paid but argued that this was common practice and did not breach regulations. However, the FA disagreed and expelled them from the competition.

Preston North End now joined forces with other clubs who were paying their players. In October, 1884, these clubs threatened to form a break-away British Football Association. The Football Association responded by establishing a sub-committee, which included William Sudell, to look into this issue. On 20th July, 1885, the FA announced that it was "in the interests of Association Football, to legalise the employment of professional football players, but only under certain restrictions". Clubs were allowed to pay players provided that they had either been born or had lived for two years within a six-mile radius of the ground.

The decision to pay players increased club's wage bills. It was therefore necessary to arrange more matches that could be played in front of large crowds. On 2nd March, 1888, William McGregor circulated a letter to Aston Villa, Blackburn Rovers, Bolton Wanderers, Preston North End, and West Bromwich Albion suggesting that "ten or twelve of the most prominent clubs in England combine to arrange home and away fixtures each season."

John J. Bentley of Bolton Wanderers and Tom Mitchell of Blackburn Rovers responded very positively to the suggestion. They suggested that other clubs should be invited to the meeting being held on 23rd March, 1888.

The following month the Football League was formed. It consisted of six clubs from Lancashire (Preston North End, Accrington, Blackburn Rovers, Burnley, Bolton Wanderers and Everton) and six from the Midlands (Aston Villa, Derby County, Notts County, Stoke, West Bromwich Albion and Wolverhampton Wanderers). The main reason Sunderland was excluded was because the other clubs in the league objected to the costs of travelling to the North-East. McGregor also wanted to restrict the league to twelve clubs. Therefore, the applications of Sheffield Wednesday, Nottingham Forest, Darwen and Bootle were rejected.

The first season of the Football League began in September, 1888. Preston North End won the first championship without losing a single match and acquired the name the "invincibles". Major William Sudell, had persuaded some of the best players in England, Scotland and Wales to join Preston and replaced Tom Mitchell of Blackburn Rovers as the country’s best secretary-manager.

Preston North End also beat Wolverhampton Wanderers 3-0 to win the 1889 FA Cup Final. Preston won the competition without conceding a single goal. The club also won the league the following season. However, other teams began to employ the same tactics. Clubs like Derby County, Everton, Sunderland, Aston Villa, and Wolverhampton Wanderers had more money at their disposal and could pay higher wages than Preston. Over the next couple of years Preston lost all their best players and they were never to win the league title again.

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fleague.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fsudell.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fpreston.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fastonvilla.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fsunderland.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fwba.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fderby.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Feverton.htm

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/Fwolves.htm

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