Clash of Colours, 1882

When we think of the professional football clubs of the industrialized north that came to dominate the game in the 1880s, it is easy to consider them as being an entirely different entity from the southern clubs of the amateur gentlemen. There was, however, a thread that linked many of the clubs of Lancashire to the public schools from which Association football had developed in the 1860s.
Turton, probably the first Lancashire side, were founded by Old Harrovians (of which more later). The case we will look at here is that of the team that really put the cat among the pigeons by reaching the FA Cup Final in 1882, Blackburn Rovers.

1878:Notice in the picture above how there is inconsistency in the jerseys.

The 'quartered ' shirts and the Maltese Cross motif that Rovers wore in the early days pointed to their (surprising) public school origins. Founder  Arthur Constantine was an Old Salopian (Shewsbury). 

Shrewsbury School, 1912

According to Charles Francis in The History of Blackburn Rovers (1925) several of the 17 present at the  St Leger Hotel On 5th November 1875 were young fellows who had just finished their education at public schools
The stipulation in setting out the club livery was that a Maltese cross be worn on the left breast This motif was worn by both the Shrewsbury and Malvern school teams.

Malvern College

Malvern College  provided Rovers with players such as the Greenwood brothers (Thomas, Harry and Doctor) and Fred Hargreaves.

Blackburn Rovers' strip remains one of the most readily recognisable in the world of football, and was much imitated. However, when their first chance of glory came as they reached the FA Cup Final in 1882 they were denied the opportunity of wearing their famous strip.The 11th FA Cup Final was the first to necessitate a change of colours.
John Lewis recalls a letter from Alcock- there is no evidence that a coin was tossed or any lots were drawn in order to decide who changed kit- Rovers were instructed, by letter. Lewis was convinced that this was a bad omen. Rovers also requested assistance with their travelling expenses; the FA declined.

On the day Rovers wore narrow black and white  hoops in the mode of Queen's Park. Old Etonians wore harlequin shirts of light blue and white (a departure from their previous plain light blue). 


Bus Parade

The civic parade for a victorious team is now one of the great traditions in world football, dating back to Blackburn Olympic's FA Cup winning celebrations in 1883.
In the 1915-16 season Bethlehem Steel became the first team to complete a National Challenge Cup and  American Cup double.


Spain 1929

A splendid photograph from an interesting blog.
Gorgeous strip on the Spain team that famously defeated England at Madrid's Estadio Metropolitano on May 15th 1929. The great Ricardo Zamora sports his trademark cricket sweater.


Association Football by J.L Jones (1904)

I cannot find words strong enough to express my disapproval. The habit of smoking, once started, may lead to grave disasters.
Jack Jones (1904)
Jack  Jones was born in Rhuddlan but grew up on Merseyside. Early in his career he played for Bootle, but his first taste of League football came at Grimsby Town.  His talent as a cricketer took him to Sheffield United Cricket Club and he then also signed for the Sheffield United Football Club. After 3 seasons at Bramall Lane Jones moved to Tottenham Hotspur. The fact that Tottenham were then in the Southern League meant that United didn't receive a transfer fee. United were further angered as the club had secured Jones a cricket coaching position at Rugby School.
Jones enjoyed 7 years at Tottenham Hotspur, and was captain of the FA Cup winning side in 1901. An outside left, he represented Wales on 21 occasions. 
Jones' book ran to 112 pages and featured chapters entitled The Disposition Of The Field; The Forwards; Half Backs; Backs; The Goalkeeper; Heading, Dribbling, Passing, and Shooting; Training For Football; The Rules Of Association Football; The Football Association  and The Offside Rule.


Artistic License

This large ceramic tile was produced by the Spode company in the 1870s. There is some lovely detail in evidence, such as the construction of the ball and the costumes of the players. However, a closer look at the jerseys reveals some artistic license. Is it fair to assume that the rose and the thistle motifs are meant to suggest that what we are seeing here is an England v Scotland clash, played out against a backdrop of rolling hills?
England, of course, have never sported the rose as a national football emblem (it has always been the crest of the Rugby Union team). The thistle is usually Scotland's Rugby emblem, but the Association team adopted it in the 1890s before a return to the lion rampant that had featured from the first ever international. The combination of hooped jerseys (navy and white) and the thistle emblem might have appeared in 1881, but those jerseys were collared.
See also: http://gottfriedfuchs.blogspot.co.uk/2014/05/egg-chasers.html


The club named after a horse...

Club Atlético Porteño (Buenos Aires) was originally formed in July 1895 as Club Atlético Capital. The founders were Irish immigrants . They gambled the club kitty om a horse called Porteño. The horse won, and the club flourished, so they changed the name of the club to that of the horse. 
They rose to the Primera División in 1907 and remained there until until 1928 . When Argentinian football was professionalised in 1931 the football club dropped out of the league. Porteño is now predominantly a Rugby Union club.
Porteño won the Federación Argentina de Football Primera División in 1912 and 1914 and the Copa de Competencia Jockey Club in 1915 and 1918.
Porteño also featured in 2 annual interleague contests , the Copa Rosario (Culaciatti) and Copa Mariano Reyna, in which they represented the Asocación Argentina de Football against Liga Rosarina (invaribaly Rosario),
The team photo comes from the 1919 Copa Rosario final, which Porteño won 1-0. 
The stripes were Royal blue and white. 


Italy 1910

25 footballers identified as 'probables ' for the future Italian national team by Lettura Sportiva in February 1910.
The first Italian XI in May of that year featured 10 of these players (marked *), and 19 of those featured eventually represented their country.  It seems surprising that Genoa CFC or Torino are not represented.

The players (and their clubs) are as follows:

Andrea Doria
Luigi Marchetti
? Ansaldo
Francesco Cali*

Of the 3 players from the Genoese club only the defender Francesco Cali (who had previously represented Switzerland) attained international honours. 

Giovanni Goccione
Alfredo Ferraris
Ernesto Borel
Umberto Pennano

None of these players made the international XI.

Club Internazionale
Virgillio Fossati*

Internazionale had only been founded in 1908, and this was the year of their farcical first scudetto. Centre half Fossati was killed in battle in 1918.

Club Ausonia
Giuseppe Rizzi*
Attilio Trerea*
Franco Bontadini

All 3 were capped. Bontadini was selected for the first international  but couldn’t play due to medical school commitments. When selected for international duty he had moved on to Internazionale.
Ausonia Football Club was a Milan based team that folded in 1912.

Milan Foot-Ball and Cricket Club
Pietro Lana *
Aldo Cevenini*
Gustavo Carrer

All three represented Italy. 

Unione Sportiva Milanese
Franco Varisco *
Mario De Simoni*
Arturo Boiocchi *

USM originally wound up in 1928 

Pro Vercelli
Giovanni Innocenti
Giuseppe Milano
Felice Milano
Guido Ara
Pietro Leone
Carlo Corna
Angelo Binaschi
Carlo Rampini

Pro Vercelli were the big guns of Italian football, and the inclusion of 8 of their players shows how highly they were regarded. However, in between the publication of this magazine and the selection of the first Italian XI Pro Vercelli were ostracised for their refusal to play Internaziuonale in a championship play-off, instead fielding a team of 11-15 year olds (of which more soon!). As a consequence of this the Pro Vercelli stars had to wait a while for their international debuts. 



A  football signed by the Arsenal team of 1936.  The signatures are:

 Norman Sidey

A centre half (which was now a central defensive position rather than a playmaker), he played 45 games for Arsenal (1932-38).

Bobby Davidson

The man who had to shoulder the onerous billing of being the next Alex James. Davidson played
63 games and scored 15 goals (1935-1937) but had the reputation of being a  'difficult personality' and moved on to Coventry City.

George Male
The fullback played 321 games for Arsenal (1930-48) He captained England 6 times in his 19 international appearances. 

Alex James
Among the greatest footballers of all time, James was the man who developed the role of the inside forward into something more approaching the modern midfielder. 

George Cox

In 2 seasons Cox played 7 games for Arsenal. He then moved on to Fulham, but his career never really took off.

Peter Dougal

A peripatetic Scottish inside forward whose many clubs included  FC Sete in France.

 Jackie Milne
A versatile winger, playing either left or right, Milne was at the club from 1935 to 1937 and played 54 games, scoring 19 goals .

Bob John 
Welsh international (15 caps) half back. John was with Arsenal from 1922 to 1937, making 470 appearances.  

Cliff Bastin
By the age of nineteen Bastin had won a League title, the FA Cup and been capped for England, making him the youngest player ever to achieve all three. 
He played 399 games for Arsenal having joined from Exeter City as a 17 yr old.  An outside left, he won  21 caps. He suffered with deafness.

 Les Compton.

A full back and later a centre half, he represented England twice and was associated with Arsenal for 22 years, playing over 250 matches. 

George Allison (Manager)
Given the unenviable task of succeeding the most innovative manager in the history of football Mr Allison did a more than decent job. An old school secretary manager with little involvement in coaching or tactics he led the Gunners to 2 league titles and 2 FA Cup wins.  In the 1939 film The Arsenal Stadium Mystery, he had the prophetic line: It's one-nil to the Arsenal. That's the way we like it.

 Joe Shaw (Assistant Manager)
Shaw had joined Arsenal as a player in 1907. On retiring in 1922 he joined the coaching staff and became caretaker manager when Herbert Chapman passed away. He oversaw the winning of the 1933-34 League title.

Arsenal players on a training walk.This form of fitness preparation has now fallen out of favour. 


Football publications of the 1860s

The Laws of the Game
Shortly after the Football Association formulated The Laws of the Game in 1863 they were published by John Lillywhite of Seymour Street in a booklet that cost a shilling and sixpence.

Kicking the ball- simply explained with the aid of annotated diagrams(!)

Beeton's Football
In 1866 cricket writer Frederick Wood produced Beeton's Football. The Beeton's series covered a wide range of subjects, and was an offshoot of the legendary Beeton's Book of Household Management.
The book contained hints on diet and preparation (avoid foods and habits which are injurious to the wind and general powers of endurance), and illustrated guidance on how to best kick the ball. 
the 98 page octavo book cost a shilling .

Sporting Life 07.02.66

Routledge's Handbook of Football
The next publisher to respond to the growing popularity of football was G. Routledge and Sons. Their 60 page Handbook of Football appeared in 1867.

The quality of the advice, which might, to modern ears, sound quite naive, is indicative of the rudimentary state of the game at this point in time: 
For excellent fellows at football the prettiest costume is a coloured velvet cap with tassel, a tight striped jersey and white flannel trousers. It is a good plan, if it can be previously so arranged, to have one side with striped jerseys of one colour, say red, and the other with another, say blue. This prevents confusion and wild attempts to run after and wrest the ball from your neighbour. 
If you have the good fortune to own a copy you could expect to get £500 for it at auction. 

The Football Annual

The Lillywhite family had been publishing cricket books since 1848. 
The first John Lilywhite's Football Annual appeared in 1868. It was edited by  Charles Alcock, and was called The Football Annual from 1869 to 1908 .  The annuals are exceedingly rare and are commonly known as Charles Alcock's Football Annual. 
'Published with the sanction of the Football Association', the annual was a combination of rule book, instruction manual, and club directory. It contained advertisements for sports goods. 
The 85 page 1868 edition covered both Association and Rugby codes. 


National Challenge Cup Winners 1930-32

A look at the winners of the United States' National Challenge Cup in the early 1930s reveals the following interesting sequence:

The Fall River Marksmen of the Atlantic Coast League defeated Bruell Insurance of Cleveland over 2 legs.  At New York Polo Grounds (30.03.30) Marksmen won  7-2. Jimmy McAuley (3),Werner Nilsen (3) and Alex McNab were the scorers. Luna Park, Cleveland hosted the second leg on 06.04.30- , Marksmen winning  2-1, with goals by McNab and Bob McAuley.

Fall River Marksmen don't appear in the league tables for the 1931 season, as the club had relocated to New York and had become the New York Yankees. However, for the National Challenge Cup they played under the name of Fall River Marksmen, having entered the tournament before the move to New York.
In the final the Marksmen/Yankees faced Chicago Bricklayers.
The 1st leg at the Polo Grounds (05.04.31) finished 6-2, Bert Patenaude scoring 5 goals and Bill McPherson 1.  
Bizarrely the rules of the contest meant that a 1-1 draw in the 2nd match (played at Chicago's Mills Stadium 12.04.31) meant that a 3rd match was required.  (Billy Gonsalves scored the Fall River goal). 
The deciding game at Sparta Stadium ,Chicago, was played on 19.04.31. Alex McNab had broken his arm in a midweek friendly and Fall River played the entire match with 10 men , winning 2-0 with goals from Patenaude and Gordon Burness.

The New York Yankees relocated after just one season, becoming The New Bedford Whalers. Under their new guise they again reached the final of the National Challenge Cup, where they defeated Stix, Baer & Fuller of St. Louis.
Both games were played at Sportsman's Park, St. Louis. On 26.03.32  the result was a 3-3 draw (some discrepancies exist over the identities of the scorers). The following week Whalers won 5-2.White, Nilsen, Gonsalves, McPherson and Florie scored the goals.

Marksmen 1930
1st leg
2nd leg
Johnny Reder
Johnny Reder
Bob McAuley
Charlie McGill
Bob McAuley
Bill McPherson
Bill McPherson
Bobby Ballantyne
Bobby Ballantyne
Alex McNab
Alex McNab
Billy Gonsalves
Billy Gonsalves
Werner Nilsen (Gavin)
Werner Nilsen
Jimmy McAuley
Bert Patenaude
James Tec White
James Tec White

Marksmen (New York Yankees) 1931
1st leg
2nd leg
3rd leg
Johnny Reder
Johnny Reder
Charlie McGill
Charlie McGill
Augusto John Rebello
Augusto John Rebello
Bill McPherson
Bill McPherson
Johnny Caldwell
Johnny Caldwell
Bobby Ballantyne
Bobby Ballantyne
Alex McNab

Werner Nilsen
James Tec White
Bert Patenaude
Bert Patenaude
Billy Gonsalves
Billy Gonsalves
James Tec White
Gordon Burness

New Bedford Whalers 1932
1st leg
2nd leg
Augusto John Rebello
Johnny Caldwell
Bill McPherson
Tom Florie
Billy Gonsalves
Werner Nilsen
James Tec White
Alex McNab

Some players of note:-
Johnny Reder
 Born in Poland, Reder also played baseball for Boston Red Sox.

Bob McAuley

Born in Glasgow, raised in Montreal. McAuley later played for Glasgow rangers, Chelsea and Cardiff City and won 2 caps for Scotland in 1931.

Bill McPherson

Began his career with his hometown club Greenock Morton and joined Beith before emigrating to the USA,

Bobby Ballantyne

Another Glasweigian , he later returned to Scotland and played for Aberdeen and St Johnstone.

Alex McNab

Another nastive of Greenock who played for Greenock Morton. Represented scotland twice in 1921. Went to the states in 1924 

Werner “Scotty” Nilsen

In a team of many Scots it was Norweigian Nilsen who was known as Scotty. He moved to the USA as a 19 year old. Represented the USA at the 1934 World Cup. Was also a male model!

Billy Gonsalves

Adelino Gonçalves was born in Rhode Island, his parents were from Madeira . Played for the USA in the 1930 and 1934 World Cups. His  professional career spanned 25 years.

Jimmy McAuley

An Irishman who had played for Ards before moving to the USA where he first played for Philedelphia Celtic. 

James Tec White

Another Scotsman, White played for Albion Rovers, Maidstone united and motherwell before Sam Mark persuaded him to join Fall River Marksmaen.

Charlie McGill

McGill had previously played for Third Lanark. 

Bert Patenaude

A native of Fall River, he played for the USA at the 1930 World Cup. 

Tom Florie

Played for the USA in the 1930 and 1934 World Cups.


Goodison Park

'The first purpose built football stadium in England'- Goodison Park opened on 24 August 1892. FA dignitaries Lord Kinnaird and Frederick Wall were present, but strangely there was no football match- a 12,000 crowd saw athletics followed music and a fireworks display. Everton's first game at the new stadium was on 1st September 1892 when they beat Bolton Wanderers  4-2. 2,000 less people were present than had been for the fireworks!. The first Everton XI to take to the pitch at the new stadium was:
Jardine, Howarth, Dewar, Boyle, Holt, Robertson, Latta, Maxwell, Chadwick, Millward.
The same line up faced  Nottingham Forest in the opening League fixture on September 3rd (a 2-2 draw).
Out of Doors magazine commented in  October 1892:
No single picture could take in the entire scene the ground presents, it is so magnificently large, for it rivals the greater American baseball pitches. On three sides of the field of play there are tall covered stands, and on the fourth side the ground has been so well banked up with thousands of loads of cinders that a complete view of the game can be had from any portion.it appears to be one of the finest and most complete grounds in the kingdom...

The illustration above shows the friendly between Everton and Heart of Midlothian on November 12th 1892. The match ended in a 2-0 victory for the hosts. The drawing shows the Gwladys Street End and Goodison Road - the old St Luke's Church  is in the background. The corner flags look like they belong on a crazy golf course. 

Liverpool Mercury -  21.11.92