1 Ravaged by war - Part 3 Erratic
in the extreme - Results
and table - printer
On 30 August 1914, Leeds City Association Football Club celebrated
its tenth anniversary. In 1904, according to Mike Green in The
Origin and Development of Football in Leeds, "a meeting of
50 people, including the officials of the Hunslet soccer club
took place at the Griffin Hotel at Boar Lane. The meeting was
told 'the time is ripe for a good Association club in Leeds'.
The resolution was passed that the club be called Leeds City and
that the action of 'renting the Holbeck ground for the season
with the option of purchase up to April 30th' be endorsed. The
new club quickly assembled a side and joined the new West Yorkshire
League with a view to being fully operational in time for application
for League status. On 15th October 1904 Leeds City took the Elland
Road pitch for the first time against Hull City."
On the evening of Monday, 10 April 1905, the club was floated
as a limited company at a directors' meeting at the Griffin Hotel
in the city under the chairmanship of Norris
Hepworth. The club's philanthropist leader passed away in
February 1914, leaving a yawning void, with City going forward
under the guardianship of the Receiver, accountant
Nevertheless, there was every reason to hope that the 1914/15
season would see manager Herbert
Chapman deliver a long-awaited promotion, despite the uncertainty
engendered by the onset of war.
One City player who would play no part in that attempt was former
England half-back Evelyn Lintott,
as recalled by Bantamspast.co.uk: "Evelyn joined up shortly after
the outbreak of war. On 14 September 1914, frustrated at the delays
in recruiting in Bradford, he enlisted at Leeds with the 15th
Battalion West Yorkshire Regiment (Prince of Wales Own) - the
'Leeds Pals'. He was still living in Bradford and gave his address
as 13 Cornwall Place, Manningham - yards from Valley Parade itself.
On his enlistment form Evelyn gives his occupation as a schoolteacher,
as opposed to the professional footballer he was."
Lintott was one of comparatively few departures from Elland Road
in the close season: Irish
international keeper Billy Scott returned to Merseyside to
join Liverpool having lost his place to Tony Hogg, while wingers
James Johnson and Neil
Turner both left Elland Road, for North Leeds Athletic and
Raith Rovers respectively.
Chapman strengthened the playing pool by signing John Edmondson
and Robert Cowen from junior football in April. Over the close
season he added wingers Ernie Goodwin and Alf
Rothwell, goalkeeper Willis Walker and left-half Wilson
Wainwright from the non-League game, while Val
Lawrence came from First Division Oldham Athletic.
The biggest signing was experienced full-back Jack
McQuillan from Second Division
rivals Hull City. McQuillan was brought in to partner Fred
Blackman, who had joined the club from Huddersfield Town for
£1,000 in February.
There were high hopes that the Citizens would mount a serious
promotion challenge. Yorkist observed in the Leeds Mercury on
24 August, "There is a most successful season before Leeds City,
if only the club can fulfil expectations. A crowd of nearly five
thousand people attended the second practice match on Saturday,
and if the club strike a lucky patch to begin with, the Elland
Road ground will be too small for the crowds seeking admission...
It would appear that Leeds City have been very fortunate in their
back to top
City kicked off the season on Wednesday, 2 September, at home
to Fulham, a side they beat twice when the Cottagers finished
mid-table in 1913/14. McQuillan made his debut, replacing George
Affleck at left-back, alongside Blackman and goalkeeper Hogg.
The half-back line comprised George Law, Harry Peart and Mick
Foley, with Jack Hampson not yet recovered from the groin injury
received in a pre-season practice match. Billy McLeod, suffering
with ulcers, was also unavailable and Simpson Bainbridge, John
Jackson, Jimmy Speirs, Arthur Price and Ivan Sharpe formed the
In recognition of the conflict in Europe, City's management invited
the Lord Mayor of Leeds, Edward A Brotherton, local MPs William
Middlebrook and Rowland Brittan and Captain Kelly, the chief recruiting
officer in the city, to address spectators at the end of the game,
with the object of persuading spectators to join up. Tom Coombs
received a positive reaction to the invitation and undertook to
provide staff to take the names of all who wished to enlist. The
match kicked off at 5pm, rather than the customary 5.15, to allow
the post-match arrangements to be conducted in daylight.
After some excellent attendances at Elland Road the season before,
the crowd of 8,000 was disappointing. Given the extreme differences
of opinion regarding the advisability of senior football continuing,
however, it was entirely predictable.
City had the better of the first half exchanges but found the
visitors' defence in resolute form, goalkeeper Arthur Reynolds
making outstanding saves from Sharpe, Jackson, Price and Speirs.
In contrast, Hogg had little to do, but after 25 minutes he conceded
the opening goal. Fulham centre-forward Lee pushed the ball past
the advancing keeper after receiving from former Arsenal forward
It was a poor game and City did not look likely to equalise until
near the end, when two Sharpe corners brought some anxious moments,
but Leeds lost the match 1-0.
City were in some disarray without McLeod and Hampson: Peart
failed to do himself justice and Speirs
was not at home leading the line, which was shuffled in the second
half. Jackson went to centre, Speirs assumed his customary inside-left
role and Price switched to inside-right. The changes brought no
improvement and the Cottagers finished worthy winners.
Any success ever enjoyed by City was based on their resilience
at home, so defeat at Elland Road was disappointing, instantly
deflating the optimism that had built up since Herbert Chapman
took the manager's chair.
Three days later, Leeds lost 3-1 at Stockport County. The Peacocks
were without Peart, Bainbridge and Jackson, with debutants Lawrence,
Rothwell and Cowen coming into the side as replacements. Speirs
returned to inside-left and Price was asked to play centre-forward.
All four goals came before half time with Gault, Wood and Rodgers
giving County a 3-0 lead in the first half hour. Sharpe managed
to pull one goal back but City were soundly beaten, ending the
day as the only club in the division without a point to their
Bainbridge and Jackson were back for the return game with Fulham
at Craven Cottage on 9 September, Rothwell and Cowen making way.
With Sharpe unavailable through injury, Fred Croot was given his
first outing of the season on the left flank.
The game was a poor one with City outclassed. The Leeds Mercury
reported: "Fulham showed most of their superiority during the
first half but there was one man on the City side that impressed
himself strongly upon the memory of the onlookers, and he was
Hogg, the custodian. Had it not been for him the visitors might
easily have found themselves badly in arrears at the interval.
Hogg commenced his good work quite early in the game, for the
men in front of him were distinctly slow in settling down, and
he kept his charge intact until a minute before the change of
ends. At times he was like a piece of India rubber, jumping up
here and there, everywhere, in fact, at the right moment, and
it was really unfortunate for him that the only goal of the match
came when he had no possible chance of saving.
"Fulham had all along been playing the more businesslike football.
They were quicker, cleverer with their footwork and undoubtedly
better together than the City, who played with a deal of vigour
but very little method. The work that led up to the goal was commenced
by Bellamy, the old Burnley winger, who made ground nicely, and
then centred in a backward direction to Slade. The latter immediately
made a quick, low shot, which Hogg would easily have saved had
not Blackman, the back, stepped right in front of him under the
crossbar. The result was Hogg became unsighted, and Blackman,
in his eagerness to clear, assisted the ball into the net.
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"The City played better during the second half, when they went
for the ball as if they meant to
get it. The chief fault, however, was their shooting and except
on one occasion, when Jackson sent in a terrific shot, which Reynolds
diverted over the bar, the Fulham goal experienced very few escapes."
Billy McLeod and Jack Hampson were finally available for selection
when City hosted Hull on 12 September. The return of the two stalwarts
brought an instant improvement and the Peacocks played their best
football of the nascent season.
It was the visitors, however, who shaded the first half, though
the game was still goalless at the break. The second half started
with a near thing when Hogg was charged off the ball by Hull centre-forward
Sammy Stevens, but Blackman saved the day at the expense of a
Leeds' hopes were raised when they opened the scoring ten minutes
into the second half. McLeod sparked off a promising move which
ended with Hull glad to concede a corner as Croot threatened.
The accuracy of the winger's flag kick made it a straightforward
task for Jimmy Speirs to head home. The home men did not have
time to settle on their lead: within a minute, inside-right Kitty
Cameron beat Hogg to equalise.
Four minutes later Hull took the lead with the softest of goals.
McQuillan, as he attempted to hold Stevens at bay, called for
his goalkeeper to come out and collect but the full-back got in
Hogg's way, and the two Leeds men confused each other. Stevens
had the easiest of tasks to slip the ball into a gaping net.
Leeds tied the scores at 2-2 after Hull
right-back John Pattison handled on the edge of the area.
John Jackson headed home from Croot's free kick, the ball striking
both keeper Nick Hendry and the post before entering the net.
Fifteen minutes before time, Hull were gifted a winning goal.
Weak play by Leeds defenders left winger Jack Lee with a clear
run on goal and he beat Hogg easily.
The Peacocks went all out for an equaliser over the final quarter
of an hour and were unlucky to be denied, but their dismal run
continued with a fourth straight defeat, 3-2.
Yorkist observed in the Mercury, "Hogg was in no way to blame
for Leeds City's defeat, his only mistake being the misunderstanding
with McQuillan. The left-back played well against his old colleagues,
but Blackman was not as sound as usual. The reappearance of Hampson
strengthened the half-back line, and there was little fault to
find with the forwards, though McLeod, who was making his first
appearance of the season, gave the impression that he is not yet
quite fit. On the whole, Leeds City's display was an improvement
on their previous work this season, but they had the misfortune
to find Hull City in their happiest mood."
The Yorkshire Post: "To lose the first four matches off the reel
is an experience which does not conduce to much confidence respecting
Leeds City's chances of promotion. We observe that in the Elland
Road club's official programme the excuse offered for the team's
disappointing start is that the players have been discouraged
by the Press crusade against the playing of football during this
stage of the war. That, clearly, is an explanation which does
not hold good, seeing that it applies to every team in the country,
to the teams who have proved Leeds City's victors. The only true
explanation of the City's bad start is that the majority of the
players have not as yet reproduced their form of last season.
The failure of the half-backs to give the desired assistance to
their forwards was very marked on Saturday, and that circumstance
in conjunction with at least one sorry blunder at full-back must
be held responsible for the team's defeat.
"McQuillan may be judged too harshly upon his share in the defeat.
He is, in general, a sound back, and showed himself as such on
Saturday, though lacking somewhat in speed, but he must learn
that it is risky to signal his goalkeeper to come far out of his
goal, and particularly that the goalkeeper must be left unhampered
in such circumstances.
"Allowing for their gift of a goal to the other side, Leeds City
were beaten on their merits. The lack of judgement shown by the
half-backs in placing the ball too far forward caused the home
front line to have to do most of their own foraging for the ball
and consequently McLeod was seen at a disadvantage compared with
Stevens, the Hull City centre-forward, who was very judiciously
fed by Deney… Croot, with many perfect centres, was the most successful
of the Leeds City forwards, but the effectiveness of the line
was, as suggested, reduced by the inadequate support from behind."
back to top
This represented the most depressing of starts, but some of the
display at Hull hinted that Leeds were coming back to form and
a week later they registered their first victory. At home to Blackpool,
Webb Richardson and
Ernie Goodwin were given League debuts. Goodwin had a splendid
game, contributing a goal and some wonderful wing play in a 2-0
victory with McLeod getting the other goal.
JRH in the Mercury: "That the City deserved their victory cannot
be denied… The changes in the Leeds team proved successful, both
Goodwin and Richardson on the extreme wings of the front line
acquitted themselves well, although Richardson could have improved
upon his corner kicks. Goodwin, apart from sending in some splendid
centres, was entrusted to take a penalty kick. Kidd managed to
stop the ball, but Goodwin rushed forward and scored for the City.
This was ten minutes from time.
"The other home forwards showed improvement on their previous
displays. Their combination was better and their shooting more
accurate. McLeod, who was a better leader than Lane, scored the
City's first goal before the interval, but this was made for him
by Hampson. The centre-half sent in a fine effort with his head,
and before Kidd could effect a proper clearance McLeod gave Leeds
"In addition to the good work done by Hampson, the other halves
did well in the way they supported the men in front of them. The
same can be said about the Blackpool intermediate line, but their
forwards did not always make the most of their opportunities."
City could not build on the victory and ended September with
a 2-0 reverse at Clapton Orient. The game
was goalless at half time after good defensive play by both sides,
but the Londoners got two goals in quick succession in the middle
of the second period. Hogg saved a penalty near the end to keep
the score respectable, but City were well beaten, as reported
by Metro in the Leeds Mercury.
"The City forwards were very weak, and rarely did they hang well
together. Goodwin made most of the running but his colleagues
badly neglected several of his centres. McLeod was always a great
trier, but he seldom could negotiate the keen attentions of Scott,
the Orient centre-half, who was chiefly responsible for the disorganisation
of the City attacks. The Leeds halves were usually too busy endeavouring
to quell the home forwards to be of much service to their own
forwards, although Foley at times made some fine openings for
Goodwin. Blackman and McQuillan, the backs, were both excellent,
while Hogg did splendidly in goal. The City team as a whole, however,
did not work well together. They should have played with more
dash in order to hold the enthusiastic Orient men."
The start of October brought scant respite: City hosted table-topping
Arsenal. The Peacocks welcomed back Sharpe from injury after four
games and gave a debut at left-half to locally-born Wilson Wainwright,
a 21-year-old signed from Morley in the close season.
After showing such poor form through the opening weeks, it might
have been anticipated that City would struggle, but not a bit
of it, as reported by JRB in the Mercury: "In what proved to be
the best game of the season at Elland Road, Leeds City made a
draw with The Arsenal in the presence of 10,000 spectators. The
Arsenal came to Leeds with a record of nine points from six matches;
a hard task therefore confronted the City team.
"There was plenty of exhilarating football, and the form of the
City team was far, far better than at any other time this season.
They played convincing football throughout, and they could claim
superiority in attack in the first half, but in defence the visitors
held their own. With such an admirable pair of backs as Shaw and
Benson, the Arsenal goal was kept intact, although it had three
very narrow escapes.
"The home front line, which included Ivan Sharpe, combined very
well, and they finished their movements in the first half better
than the visiting forwards. McLeod, however, might have improved
upon some of his shots.
"It should be mentioned that the halves on both sides supported
their forwards admirably, and Wainwright made a useful substitute
for Foley on the left of the Leeds trio, while Buckley and Hampson,
in the centre, did any amount of work both in attack and defence."
The Yorkshire Post: "There were about ten or twelve thousand
spectators at Elland Road to witness the match between Leeds City
and The Arsenal. They had the satisfaction of seeing a lively
game and an exciting finish, for after being placed a goal in
arrear three minutes from time the City made a draw of the match.
"The ground was swept by a strong, gusty wind, but the players
mastered its difficulties very well; indeed, the kicking of both
sets of backs formed a prominent feature of the game. The City
had the wind in their favour to start with, and most of the attacks
came from their forwards. They found it difficult to get past
Shaw and Benson, however, and the few shots - the best was from
the foot of Goodwin - that reached Lievesley were cleverly dealt
with. The nearest approach to a score in this period was a shot
by Bradshaw which struck the far post and then, rebounding across
the goalmouth, enabled McQuillan to clear.
"In less than five minutes from the change of ends, Leeds City
scored. Lawrence was palpably fouled in the penalty
area, and the usual punishment being awarded, Goodwin shot hard
into the left hand corner of the net. Twenty minutes passed before
The Arsenal equalised. A corner followed a free kick just outside
the penalty area, and from Rutherford's flag kick, a scrimmage
ensued in front of goal and out of this Hardinge scored. The City
defence was heavily tried after this, but held out until near
the close, when from a corner kick by Rutherford the ball glanced
off the crossbar to Bradshaw, whose shot Hogg had no chance of
stopping. Hardly had the genuflexions of The Arsenal at this success
ceased, when the City left wing was seen tearing away to the other
end. Here there was a corner, and, Goodwin dropping the ball in
front of goal, Speirs sprang up to it and headed it into the net.
Thus the City drew the match with the score 2-2."
back to top
The point saw City edge their way up to fourth from bottom and
things continued to improve when they won 2-1 at Derby County
on 10 October to register their first ever success at the Baseball
Ground. Harry Peart and Mick Foley returned in the half-back line
with Hampson out with lumbago.
Leeds began the game at a high pace and the first ten minutes
were spent in and around the Derby goal, but then the Rams broke
out for Baker to give them the lead. City equalised three minutes
before the break. Derby full-back Waugh missed his kick and Ivan
Sharpe seized possession and centred for Jimmy Speirs to score.
The second half was evenly contested but Leeds snatched an 87th
minute winner, Billy McLeod heading home from a Sharpe centre.
Tony Hogg had to make two late saves to preserve City's advantage,
but they deserved the victory for their "good and superior football,
as many of the 5,000 onlookers could be heard after the match
to acknowledge," according to the Yorkshire Post.
The Mercury added, "There was no gainsaying the visitors' superiority
in the first half, and although they were afterwards thrown more
on the defensive they never lost ground. Derby neglected several
chances, but their inability to score was due more to the steady
play of Hogg and the Leeds full-backs than anything else. Hogg
was a little unfortunate in regard to Derby's goal, which Baker
scored ten minutes after the start. The latter hardly expected
to succeed from the angle at which he aimed, and the ball appeared
to cannon into the net off the goalkeeper. Otherwise Hogg was
admirable and as much may be said of Scattergood, who, at the
other end, had probably more to do. Ivan Sharpe had a good deal
to do with the success of his side, and it was work by him that
led up to both goals… Leeds' best wing was the left, Speirs showing
wonderful form, and having much to thank Goodwin for."
During the week, City made it through to the final of the West
Riding Cup, beating Bradford Park Avenue by the odd goal in seven
at Elland Road, with McLeod getting a brace and Bainbridge and
Speirs the others. Bradford came back from 2-1 down to lead 3-2
with eight minutes remaining. With the crowd starting to leave
the ground, McLeod equalised and then Speirs drove home the winner
with three minutes left.
When they followed up by defeating Lincoln City 3-1 on 17 October,
thus moving up to 15th in the table, it seemed that Leeds had
finally got their season on the move. According to the Yorkshire
Post, they "proved to their numerous followers - about 10,000
spectators were present - that they still possess the talent from
which the promotion problem may be tackled with some degree of
However, they got a rude awakening a week later at Birmingham.
United in the Mercury: "If Leeds City had gone to Birmingham and
found the home side in the form in which Stockport County encountered
them a fortnight ago, the three goals the visitors scored would
most assuredly have been sufficient to give them the victory;
but although Leeds City scored thrice, and gave
anything but a poor display, they found themselves in opposition
to a forward line capable of registering half a dozen goals. Nine
goals did the match yield, of which Birmingham scored twice as
many as their opponents.
"Considering the wretched conditions, for, apart from the drizzling
rain, the men were playing in a heavy mist, the football seen
was thoroughly good and attractive, and Birmingham were unquestionably
right at the top of their form. Rarely have their forwards shown
such cleverness and initiative as they did in this game. The inside
men were particularly smart and nippy. They brought some resourceful
tricks out of their respective lockers, and they were abundantly
successful with their shots. But it must not be imagined that
the goals were due to indifferent custodianship. On the contrary,
Hogg gave an excellent display between the Leeds posts. It was
simply a case of the ball being usually placed so that the goalkeeper
"Blackman and McQuillan kicked fairly strongly, but they slipped
about a good deal. Why they should have been at such great disadvantage
when compared with Womack and Ball, it is impossible to say. They
were unable to keep their feet, and more than one goal accrued
in consequence. The Leeds half-backs were by no means at their
best; indeed, it was here that there was a great disparity between
the work of the two sides. It is true that the Leeds halves had
pretty well as much as they could do to try to hold the Birmingham
vanguard, so there was some excuse for them if they failed to
give their forwards as many favourable passes as they would have
back to top
"Coming to the forwards, Ivan Sharpe played very good football.
He showed pace, got the ball across well, and was remarkably successful
in front of goal. McLeod was another man who rendered his side
useful service. He scarcely shot as well as he might have done,
but he was one of the useful workers in the attacking division
and Speirs was another. Goodwin and Jackson were not quite so
as the others and do what Leeds would, they could never produce
the same versatility and trickery of their opponents."
That City should so emphatically reverse the trend the following
week, thrashing Grimsby Town 5-0, only demonstrated the startling
inconsistency with which manager Herbert Chapman had to contend.
Billy McLeod opened the scoring after five minutes and notched
his second just before half time. Speirs made it 3-0 midway through
the second period and Bainbridge and Jackson completed the scoring
as Leeds climbed to 14th.
Their stop-start run continued when they lost by a single goal
on 7 November at Huddersfield, a match they were "distinctly unlucky
to lose," according to Yorkist. "It was not a brilliant game,
but it was intensely interesting all the way through, and the
crowd was kept on tenterhooks right up to the final whistle. Leeds
City certainly gave a fine display in all respects but one, and
that was in shooting.
"Playing fast and open football, they were much the better side
in the first half, but their finishing was wretched. Jackson,
McLeod and Ivan Sharpe were the most notable sinners, as each
missed glorious chances. Only once did Huddersfield Town really
look like scoring in this half, and that was when Hogg fell in
clearing a shot from Smith, the City custodian being lucky to
scrape the ball out at the expense of a corner.
"Huddersfield Town improved considerably in the second half,
but still Leeds City quite held their own. Even after Huddersfield
Town got the lead the City continued to play pluckily, and no
one could have grudged them a share of the points. Everybody agreed
that the City did not deserve to lose.
"City had so much the better of the play in the first half, and
had so many chances of scoring, that they ought to have made victory
practically certain. Then it was chiefly a misunderstanding on
the part of the City backs, Blackman and McQuillan, which enabled
Shields, twenty minutes from time, to snatch the goal which gave
Huddersfield Town the victory.
"Practically the only fault that can be found with Leeds City
was the weak finishing of the forwards. All played quite cleverly
in the open, but all were weak in the vicinity of goal. Ivan Sharpe,
usually so accurate with his crosses, could not now find the right
direction. Bainbridge, at outside-right, did well despite the
fact that he sustained an injury to his right foot in the first
"Hampson played a great game at centre-half and Foley was also
at the top of his form at left-half. Law worked hard at right-half,
but was at times slow in parting with the ball. McQuillan gave
a splendid display at left-back, but Blackman was not quite up
to form against his old colleagues. Hogg was not much troubled
in goal, and had no chance with the shot which beat
Yorkist went on to suggest that City would beat Hull in the West
Riding Cup final at Elland Road the following Wednesday, and
his prediction proved well founded.
Leeds recovered from the sending off of centre-half Jack Hampson
at the start of the second half to win the game with a goal from
captain Jimmy Speirs.
The game was ruined as a spectacle by the appalling weather,
with heavy rain falling and players slipping and sliding on a
mud bath of a pitch. The conditions limited the crowd to 830 and
receipts to less than £30, which only just covered expenses.
It was the first time City had won the trophy, which they were
presented with after the game by Joseph Connor, president of the
West Riding FA, who took the opportunity of responding to those
who wanted competitive football suspended while the conflict in
Europe raged on. "It was not fair that the game should be singled
out for special criticism. As a matter of fact Association football
had responded creditably to the country's call. In the West Riding
Association alone the returns showed that about 2,000 players
had enlisted in one or other of the national forces. The Association
gave every encouragement to players to enlist and would continue
to do so."
When Hampson's dismissal was considered by the West Riding FA
some weeks later, it was decided, in view of his previously exemplary
disciplinary record, that his punishment should be limited to
a fine of four shillings.
City's following three League games, against Bristol City, Bury
and Preston, all resulted in draws, with the only goal coming
from McLeod against Bristol on 14 November. The goalless draw
at home to Preston on 28 November left them five places off bottom.
Following the Bury game, both clubs reported the official, Mr
G M Pardoe of Kidderminster, to the Football League for his "indifferent
back to top
During the first half McLeod secured possession while in an offside
position and passed out to Goodwin. As McLeod prepared to hammer
home the cross, he was brought down. The referee awarded a penalty,
but was persuaded to change his decision when Bury players asked
him to consult his linesman. Earlier, Pardoe had also refused
Bury a spot kick.
The referee's decisions incensed the crowd and after the final
whistle there were rowdy scenes, which were also the subject of
an official report to the Football League. As the players left
the field, Jimmy Speirs got into a heated argument with one of
the Bury players and when the City players reached their dressing
room they found their way blocked by a hostile crowd of home supporters.
A nasty confrontation was avoided when some calmer attendees
intervened, "although one threatening individual was detained",
and officials managed to clear a way through.
City ought to have beaten Nottingham Forest at the City Ground
on 5 December, but lost 3-1. They found their best form a week
later, however, when they hammered
Leicester Fosse 7-2 with the reinstated Arthur Price getting
a second half hat trick.
Again, City failed to build on the result and lost 2-1 at Barnsley
on 19 December. They were handicapped by Jack Hampson's concussion;
when he returned to action he was forced to play out the game
at inside-right with John Jackson dropping back. Barnsley equalised
Sharpe's opening goal in the twenty minutes that Hampson was off
recovering. Lees scored the winner for Barnsley in the 70th minute.
City finished the year off in style, however, with two victories
over bottom club Glossop. Both games, on Christmas Day at Glossop
and Boxing Day at Elland Road, finished 3-0. Fred Croot featured
in both matches, recalled for the injured Ivan Sharpe, and it
was from his cross that Jackson opened the scoring at Glossop.
Speirs was unlucky when he hit the post with keeper Causer beaten
but McLeod soon increased the advantage, drawing Causer out before
sliding the ball home. Jackson completed the scoring, again from
a Croot centre.
City returned the same score at Elland Road the following day,
but there were complaints in the Leeds Mercury that the Peacocks
let themselves down.
"Most of the spectators at Elland Road on Saturday would be inclined
to blame Leeds City for having been content with three goals in
the game against Glossop. It will undoubtedly be a long time before
they get such another chance of pushing up their goal average.
Indeed, if they had netted ten times, it would not have been surprising.
In the second half, for instance, it was pitiful to see both McLeod
and Price helpless in front of goal when Jackson presented them
with openings. Later, too, Price was a delinquent and once or
twice Croot refused to bustle in as he might have done.
"Despite the second half shortcomings, one was compelled to admire
the home attack for its splendid opportunism early on, and much
of the credit for this is due to McLeod. He arranged his assaults
in a perfectly cool and confident fashion, and the goals
were practically inevitable.
"The first of the trio was a masterpiece of accuracy and insight…
Hampson had put an end to a rather erratic movement by the Glossop
forwards and had given Croot and Price a start in the right direction.
It was the winger who polished the movement, forcing his way in
and centring right over everybody's head to Bainbridge, who was
totally unmarked. For the latter to swing the ball into the net
was simplicity itself. The third goal was the outcome of a similar
effort from Croot, when McLeod headed in another centre.
"The second, however, was the result of a fine piece of unselfishness
on the part of McLeod. He had determinedly worked his way to within
ten yards of the goal and when having drawn both backs he passed
in to Price."
Those two wins saw City end the year 13th in the table, as high
as they had been all season, and hinting that they might yet be
able to fashion some sort of promotion challenge, if only they
could quell their remarkable inconsistency.
Part 1 Ravaged by war - Part
3 Erratic in the extreme - Results
and table - printer
Other Football Highlights from 1914/15
- New League champions Everton owed their second title win (they
had won the third ever Championship back in 1891) largely to
their results away from home, where they won 11 times and conceded
just 18 goals in 19 games. Only bottom club Spurs won fewer
than Everton's eight at home. Everton's winning total of 46
points was the lowest since the First Division was increased
to 20 clubs. They were only six points above West Bromwich Albion
in 11th place
- With the War in progress since August, the Cup final was a
very low key affair. It was held at Old Trafford in wet, gloomy
conditions, with thousands of servicemen in uniform among the
near 50,000 crowd, many of them bearing signs of injuries sustained
at the Front. The outcome was an easy 3-0 win for Sheffield
United over Chelsea
- As the War dragged on, and news came back of terrible casualties
at the Front, the football authorities began to view the situation
with growing concern. The season was allowed to finish, although
the fixtures played out with little enthusiasm. It was understandably
difficult for the players to concentrate on football. As soon
as the season was over, there was a rush to change their football
strip for the uniforms of the armed forces
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