Playing long balls into empty space since 2012.

Friday, 23 August 2019

100 years ago today 29 August 1919

Saturday August 23

Dockerty Cup Semi-Finals

Windsor 1 Northumberland and Durham United 0 Middle Park Ref: J.McCulley

Windsor: Bingham, Hurd, Tunn, Johnson, Harding, Fair, Allen, Dodds, Scotchbrook, Hopgood, Elliott.
Northumberland and Durham United: Robison, Guthrie, Longthorpe, J.Grieves, Soames, Mackay, 
Marsden, Fleming, Dillon, Miller, C.Grieves.

Footscray Thistle 4 (Fletcher, Biggart, Rowlinson, Thomas) Melbourne Thistle 0

South Coast Times and Wollongong Argus (NSW : 1900 - 1954), Friday 29 August 1919, page 15

(By Observer.)
Football last Saturday was something that will be remembered by Soccer en-thusiasts for a long time to come, when that good team, Balgownie, winners of South Coast League Competition, outed one of the crack teams in New South Wales in the Gardiner Cup at Woonona. Pyrmont has to play Balmain Fernleigh in the final for the Metropolitan League Competition, which shows the quality of the team. Balgownie has defeated. A very remarkable thing is that the family of Masters and Johnstons provided more than half of Balgownie's team, six in number, three from each family. This team has to play next Saturday at Woonona, and as Y.M.CA. has a hot team, this will be a great game. I understand Balgownie boys are in solid train and mean business. This is a good thing for Soccer players, as you must be fit to sustain the pace throughout. Let the other teams follow this lead; no doubt condition proved a big factor in the game last Saturday. If I were asked who I thought was the most conspicuous for Balgownie, I would point to the whole team; I have not seen a more equal lot of players this season; one thing is certain, I don't think we could improve their team by any of our other players. The crowd was all Balgownie's, and the excitement at Balgownie's first goal, which was got in the first 15 minutes, was surprising; men shouted, women clapped, while girls danced with joy. But when Moore scored for Pyrmont, equalising the score, quite the reverse was the case. But Balgownie never let up, and wired in all the time until Judy Masters forced the second goal for Balgownie. This was the signal for another outburst of cheers, almost doubling the first goal. Men rushed the field, and kissed and hugged Judy until the referee ordered them off. Cornwall, in goal for Pyrmont, was kept very busy, but proved himself a splendid goalie. Robertson, right full-back is a back of some class, who played the game of the day as far as the back division is concerned. Moore is a very clever forward, who does not need too big an opening to get there, and on the ball always; Hunter; Balgownie's full-back, was too strong for Black and Blake. McLean, on the right wing for Pyrmont, showed plenty of pace, as did Maitland, but old Dicky Johnston was their downwfall. It was very easy to pick the best of Pyrmont; Moore and Johnston easily. 

The other game, South Illawarra v. Gladesviile, seemed to be very slow after the first game, but nevertheless this was an exceptionally clever game. This resulted in a win for South Illawarra by three to nil. A. Jones, the South's star performer, was again injured on the foot, but stuck it out in a determined manner. Lyons, the centre forward for Gladesviile, sent a shot that made the bar dance for quite a time; six inches lower, no goalkeeper in the world could have stopped it. Rawle stood out as a terribly good goalie, stopping everything and using great judgment; also clearing well, which is a fault most of our goalies have; they seem to have no kick, and nine out of ten go over towards the corner. Killen, Gladesville's forward, put in some good runs, but very often overran the ball. Had Gladesville centred more, things might have been different. Lyons, in centre, is a player who can be relied on to place the ball in or around the goal mouth every time, an advantage Gladesviile failed to realise. Another player who was good was the goalie for the visi-tors; he was hardworked, and saved well. A. Kerr was the mainstay of the Souths' backs; Critcher seemed to be very nervous, but for a third grader he is excellent. But these teams want the absolute best from the seniors. C. James was not up to Gardiner Cup form by a long way; this player appeared to have been injured during the game. E. Beadle was fairly good, but a little off; Lear-month was brought back centre half in place of A. Jones, but was nothing showy, although moderately good.Young Harvey is a great lad and a tricky player from the third grade. J. Muir is still going great guns, and scored with a splendid shot from a very awkward angle. Jock Carroll had to retire from a serious injury after playing a good game. D. Robertson's cannon shot was the feature of the day's play; nothing like it has been witnessed here since that fast shot of the old Woonona player, J. Parker, who was considered to be the fast low driver of his day. Robertson played a very good game through-out. This South team has been altered, and in my opinion considerably strengthened; A. James will fill the place of Critcher, while Snowy Haines takes C. James's position. Wagga Welsh will occupy the centre forward place; Harvey moves to inside right. The others remain as they were. This team meets North Sydney on September 6, at Sydney, and, I think, will add another vic-tory to their number. Mr. R. Brown has been selected to act as manager to them during their visit, and he is sure to rove himself a very capable one at that. A great game was provided by the Schoolboys in the inter -district game at Woonona, when the S6uth schools were too good for the north, winning by four to nil after a splendid exhibi tion- The selection committee were on the ground 'to select the team to travel to Sydney. A special feature of this game was the boy Horton, in the goal for Norths ; he seemed to be everywhere at once, and stopped dozens. The game that people are patiently waiting to see is North Illawarra v. Granville tomorrow (Sat.) in Sydney. This team from the north is a very good one, and will with just a small amount of luck get well up in the Gardiner Cup. Everybody is well aware of the quality of Granville. This team was tipped to win the Metropolitan League Competition, and at one time was on top of the competition list, but that fiend, the flu, got amongst them when they were the most urgently needed and spoilt their chance. This was the team that played Cockatoo Dock when the spectators rushed the field and the game had to be abandoned; any how, as good as they are, they are sure to be fully extended when they meet our North Illawarra team on Saturday. As a preliminary game, Woonona A. v. Thirroul will be played, starting at 1.45. All the rest of the competitions are off, except Schools. Mr. J. Phillips, who acted as referee, was in his glee while refereeing the school district game last Saturday, and the boys learned very much from' him as no point was too small for him to explain to them. Mr. Thos. Simmons acted as referee to Pyrmont v. Balgownie. and gave great satisfaction. Mr. W. 
Cunningham, the secretary of the Referees' Association, also examining referee to the Illawarra District Association, refereed the South Illawarra v. Gladesviile game, and nothing passed him on either side. Soccer seems to be only in mid-season yet, as the Nurse Cup has to be disposed of. Nominations for this cup are rolling in; such teams as Y.M.C., Granville, Pyrmont, Adamstown, Lithgow Thistles, Gladstone Rovers, Cockatoo Dock, Balgownie, Woonona, Thirroul, Corrimal. have promised to play, which means that the best Soccer teams in N.S. Wales will be brought to the South Coast. The Troutt medals will also provide something for the second grade; that is, the present third grade, who will automatically move up, to seconds after the conclusion of the present comp. This competition for Troutt's medals, which was at first fixed for all-comers in the second grade, and third grade on this Coast, has now been confined to the Coast teams. Following are the teams to represent South Illawarra against North Sydney at Sydney Sept. Oth: Goal, G. Rawle; backs, A. Kerr, A. James; halves. S. Haines, A. jories, E. Beadle; forwards, j J. Muir, G. Harvey, W- Welsh, D. Rob- j ertson, S'. Learmonth ; reserve, J. Kerr; manager, R. Brown. Selectied North steam to play Gran ville at Sydney, to-morrow (Sat.) : — Goal, lies Hume; backs, S. Broadhead (captain), A. Marr ; halves, A. Warner, T. Gibson, J. Birch; forwards, J. Watts, T. Hay ton, T. Green, A. Veigel, T. Ev- i ans; reserves, J. Roberts. Balgownie team to play Y.M.C.A., at j Woonona to-morrow: Goal, Bell; backs, Hunter, H. Masters; halves, R. John ston, A. Masters, J. Harris; forwards, J. Masters, W. Johnston ,D- McMahon, D. Ward, H. Johnston.

Register (Adelaide, SA : 1901 - 1929), Friday 29 August 1919, page 8

The English newspapers continue their campaign against waste. ......., and that millions of washleather gloves tied in bundles have been used by the men as footballs.

Swan Express (Midland Junction, WA : 1900 - 1954), Friday 29 August 1919, page 4

Tomorrow the Midland eleven will line up against Claremont Juniors in the second round of the Challenge Cup at Esplanade at 2 p.m. Players to catch the 1.23 p.m. train from Midland. Kick off at 3 p.m. sharp. Both elevens will be at full strength, and a good game is sure to be witnessed. The local lads will select their team from the following: Clarke (2), Bond, Motteram, Wilderspen, Burge, Hodgson, Christian, Oswald, Treacher, Wright, Brackenridge and Oswald. In the new Masonic Hall every Saturday evening the soccerites intend holding a dance, and roll up and make it a success. The weekly dance will commence on Saturday, August 30, at 8 p.m.; ladies 6d., geutlemen 1/-. Don't forget to come along and enjoy yourself; good floor music, and all the latest dances.

Tuesday, 20 August 2019

100 years ago today 22 August 1919

Saturday August 16

V.A.B.F.A. Metropolitan League

Albert Park 1 (Anderson) Footscray Thistle 2 (Allaford, Own Goal) Middle Park Ref: R.Medlicott
Melbourne Thistle 2 (Sandy, Moreland) St Davids 0 Middle Park Ref: J.McKenzie
Windsor 2 (Hopgood, Scotchbrook) Spotswood 2 (Holt, Izzard) Ref: J.Downie
Preston 0 Northumberland and Durham United 7 (Miller4, C.Grieves2, Fleming) Preston 

Ref: J.McCulley

Next week

Saturday August 30

V.A.B.F.A. Metropolitan League

Northumberland and Durham United v Albert Park
St David's v Spotswood
Preston v Windsor

Melbourne Thistle v Footscray Thistle

Telegraph (Brisbane, Qld. : 1872 - 1947), Friday 22 August 1919, page 7



The return intercity matches against the combined Ipswich and West Moreton dis tricts takes place on Saturday next, 23rd instant, at Bundamba. The following players have been selected to represent Brisbane:— SENIORS. Goal, E. Burgess: backs, W. M'Bride (captain), G. Harris; halfs, W. Blake, K. Menzies, Martin : forwards ; J. English, A. Thompson, J. Comerford, J. Calium, W. Nicholls. Reserves, Gibson, Green, Mathieson, Beaton. JUNIORS. Goal : Francis ; backs, D. Comerford (captain), J. Smith ; half backs, T. Powell. G. Gamble, F. .Shanahan.; forwards. H. Hossins L. Clarke, M'Rae, F. Bothwell, S. Sainsbury. Reserves : N. Morrison, P. Young. H. Clark. J. Young. (Players are requested to be in attendance at Central Station at the followlng times: Juniors, 12.10 p.m. Seniors, 1.10 p.m.) Mr. W. Donnellan and Mr. J. Peden, have been appointed managers of the senior and Junior teams respectively. Great Interest is being taken In these matches in Ipswich are out to avenge their recent defeats in Brisbane, but the Brisbane boys are quite confident they can repeat the dose against their old rivals. Everything therefore, points to two first class games of soccer, and pleasant afternoon's sport at Bundamba.

Arrow (Sydney, NSW : 1916 - 1933), Friday 22 August 1919, page 2

Originally it was intended to dispose of the First League competition (a final for which is necessary between Balmain Fernleigh and Pyrmont) this week-end, but owing to the lack of a revenue producing ground, the final decision has been set back a week. This final will draw a bumper house, so the discretion of the Association is commendable in the circumstances. This decision permits the opening of the Gardiner Cup (State championship) a week earlier than anticipated, and so to-morrow, we witness the preliminary tussle for possession of the 31-year-old trophy. Twenty-three entries are forward, comprising teams from Sydney (11). Newcastle (5), Maitland (2) Lithgow (2). and South Coast (3). Some keen games are promised ere the winners are declared. Though the prowess of the country nominees is an unknown quantity, the idea that a greater proportion of the dozen are capable of conquering Sydney's elect allows of a no re-buttal.
Premier interest is attached to the meeting of the holders of the trophy (Weston) and Balmain Caledonians at Easton Park, Rozelle. The Scotchmen made only a mediocre showing in the League, but a special effort is being made by them to avoid the death sentence tomorrow. Weston (according to Secretary Tweddle and Full-back Lambert) assure me that their opponents' race for the Cup is as good as finished. The argument stands part heard. Royal Navy entertain Holmesville (Newcastle) at Clyde Oval. The departure of the New Zealand robbed the Naval men of a good full-back in Laycock and another promising man in Beale (injured) will also be missed. That 1-1 draw with Cockatoo last Saturday has given the seafarers great heart. A great game is anticipated between Y.M.C.A. and Annandale at Lyne Park, Rose Bay. The State champions of 1913 have not quite forgotten that in '14 Y.M. defeated them in the first round 2-0. Both sides will be strongly represented. Annandale report the probable re-introduction of Billy Carroll and Jack Leckie — the acknowledged ability of whom needs no comment. The second round of the Cup is: —

  • Adamstown v. Minmi,
  • West Wallsend (who defeated Cessnock in the first round. 4-0 last Saturday week) v. Hamilton. 
  • Pyrmont or Balgownie v. Annandale or Y.M.C.A.,
  • Royal Navy or Holmesville v. Balmain Fernleigh,
  • North Sydney v. Gladesville or South Illawarra.
  • Granville v. North Illawarra,
  • Canterbury v. Balmain Caledonians or Weston.
  • Lithgow Thistle or Lithgow Ironworkers v. Cockatoo Dockyard.
The first-named team in each tie shall have choice of district in which it shall be played. 

This competition (a knock-out) is conducted by the Newcastle branch, and, as last year, invitations were extended the Sydney clubs. Last Saturday Pyrmont B went down to Minmi (5-0). Tomorrow. Balmain Fernleigh meet Adamstown at the Show Ground (Newcastle), and Canterbury travel to Weston to interview Cessnock. To-morrow week Annandale oppose Hamilton at Newcastle.

By defeating Gladesville (6-0) last Saturday, Balmain Gladstone have qualified for the semi-final of the Sunlight Cup. The other three ties will be run off to-morrow. Unless something unforeseen occurs, the pot seems a good thing for the Scranton brigade. As in the case of the Gardiner Cup, a defeated team is shown the exit. 

Thursday, 15 August 2019

100 years ago today 18 August 1919

Saturday August 9

Dockerty Cup Round One

  • Albert Park 1 (J.Anderson) Footscray Thistle 2 (Thomas, Carr) Middle Park Ref: H.Butler
  • St Davids 0 Windsor 1 (Scotchbrook) Ref: J.Downie
  • Melbourne Thistle 1 (A.Ogilvy) Preston 0 Ref: J.McCulley
  • Spotswood 0 Northumberland and Durham United 2 (McKay2) Ref: R.Medlicott

The Age
British Association. — The league programme will be continued to-morrow, the following matches being down for decision: — Spotswood v. Windsor: S. Dempster. Melbourne Thistle v. St David's: J. M'Kenzie. Albert Park v. Footscray Thistle: R. Medlicott. Preston v. N. and D.: J. M'Culley. To be played on the ground of the first-named clubs; kick off 3.15 p.m. N. and D. players book to Preston Bell station. There will be a meeting of the council on Monday next at the Amateur Sports Club at 8 p.m., when the draw for the semi-finals of the Dockerty cup will take place.

Robertson Advocate (NSW : 1894 - 1923), Friday 15 August 1919, page 2

Soccer Football
A match between the Bowral and Mittagong Soccer clubs will be played at Bowral to-morrow (Saturday) afternoon, the home team being as follows:— Sparks, Venables, Larbalestier, T Smith. H. Newbold, N. Stephens, Fowler, Elliott. Reilly, Tooney, Whitney. Players are requested to meet on the Soccer ground at 3 o'clock, and the kick off will take place at 3.30 prompt.

Lithgow Mercury (NSW : 1898 - 1954), Friday 15 August 1919, page 4

A meeting of the Western District Soccer Association was held in the Trades Hall on Tuesday night. Mr. R. Anson presided. It was decided that two sets of medals be purchased, one for the winning team in connection with the Pedersen Cup competition and
one for the winning team in the schools com petition. The fixtures for the Langlands and Pedersen cup competitions for to-morrow were drawn and resulted: — First grade: Ironworks v. Cullen Bullen, on old showground, at 3.30. Second grade: Magpies v. S.A.F. [small arms factory], 2.30, on the same ground. Attention was directed to the fact that some of the goal posts and-cross bars had been removed, while others had been wantonly destroyed. The secretary. was instructed to endeavor to get a visit from a New Zealand team to Lithgow.

Competing entertainments
To-Morrow Afternoon and Night. — Pictures at the Colosseum.
To-Morrow Afternoon and. Night and Monday Night. —Pictures at the Trades and Oddfellows' Halls.
Saturday Afternoon. — Hospital Benefit Football Matches, Recreation Reserve.

Monday, 12 August 2019

Sunshine in Argentina

First Published May 2012

When we think about the relationship between Australia and Argentina we don't really think about soccer. We think about . . . (Gaucho's, that fabulous restaurant in Adelaide?) . . . well maybe we do think about soccer. But we don't think for long. Sure there were a couple of world cup play-off games in 1993 where we did OK, but lost. Paul Wade tried to wear Diego Maradona and Robbie Slater burst into my consciousness with what I remember as a dazzling display in the midfield. And there was that famous 4-1 victory over them in 1988 and then Messi at the MCG a few years back. Then there's the sublime Oscar Crino who graced the NSL and the Socceroos with his skill and Adrian Cacaeres who wasn't quite in Crino's league but made something of an impact in the NSL and the A League. After that there's not much else to mention. 

When we do see a relationship it tends to seem a one-way process. We have nothing to offer them; while we are fortunate if they deign to grace us with their presence or send a few players our way. We certainly have nothing to give them or teach them about the beautiful game. The very idea of Aussies teaching the Argies to play soccer! It's in the realms of selling ice to the Eskimoes or carrying coals to Newcastle, isn't it?

If this story, taken from the Sunshine Advocate  of 28 January 1944, is to be taken at face value we might just have to rethink our assumptions. Or maybe not.

Published during World War II, the story harks back to 1912, exactly 100 years ago, when a bunch of farm implement makers from Sunshine employed by H. V. McKay Pty. Ltd. went to Argentina to assist with the process of exporting and installing the tools. A number stayed there for several years and got into the round ball game. 

It will be interesting to follow up on this story and see how far its tentacles have spread.



Memories of Sunshine's 1912 Soccer Team

In the early part of the present century H. V. McKay Pty. Ltd. opened up trade in farm implements with Argentina, and many thousands of the local product helped gather the crops in the South American republic. Quite a number of employees from the Sunshine works went to South America during the period when the implements were being exported from here and some stopped several years. Whilst over there sport was indulged in, and the illustration here portrays a soccer team that, it was claimed, would give Woolwich Arsenal a run for the money. Judging by the pose of some of the champions, their looks belie their speed, but note the costumes. The photo was taken in 1912, and Mr. Vic. McKay, the present factory superintendent of the Sunshine works, but who has not been well for the past month or two, can be seen in the back row. 

BACK ROW (left to right). H. Thomas (Arg), D. Clemson (Aust), V. R. McKay (Aust),  G. Thomas (Arg),
A. Thomas
(Aust), J. Wick (N.Z.), W. Bourke (Aust).  FRONT ROW. F. Phillipe (Arg), I. Ramas (Arg),
A. Draper
(Aust), Capt.;  G. Ivory (Aust), N. Lawson (Aust), T. Jose (Arg).

Argentina is not too sweet with the Allies at present, and allegations are that the country is the headquarters of a huge Nazi spy ring, so conditions would not be as pleasant there as it was in 1912.

Positions on the Field. W. Bourke (goalkeeper), G. Ivory (right back), T. Jose (left back), N. Lawson (right half), I. Ranas (left half), V. R. McKay (centre half), D. Clemson (O/S right), J. Wick (I/S right), F. Phillipe (I/S left), A. Thomas (O/S left), A. Draper (centre), H. Thomas (referee), G. Thomas (boundary).


The fascinating question is whether these men already 'had' soccer when they went or whether it was something they 'acquired' while in Argentina. The first club in Sunshine (in 1912) appears to post-date this trip. Does this sojourn help to promote the game in Sunshine or is it a passing moment? We do know that the McKay company and name keeps up its connection with Sunshine soccer. H.V. McKay was one of the inaugural vice-presidents of the Sunshine United club in 1924 and the McKay surname pops up in teams lists in different periods. And the following story shows the company's generosity in helping Sunshine Soccer Club rebuild its pavilion in 1933. 

Reports presented at the monthly meeting of the Sunshine Soccer Club, held at the Town Hall on Tuesday evening, with Mr. W. Campbell in the chair, point to the committee's being able to field a team stronger, this year than has been the case for some time past. In addition to those already announced, several other useful players have signed on, and, barring accidents, the club should be well forward when the season's honors are being distributed. H. V. McKay, Massey Harris Prop. Ltd. have kindly donated the material necessary to re-fashion the pavilion on the railway reserye, and a working bee (with emphasis on the "working") will be held on Saturday next, March 11, when members will engage on a transformation scene under the supervision of an experienced tradesman. Will members and all soccer friends kindly note the day and date.  (Sunshine Advocate 3 March 1933)

In all likelihood this is the current-day Chaplin Reserve (thanks Paul). Socceroo and Sunshine boy, Angus Drennan recalls "first playing soccer as young 11 year old on a field in Sunshine called MacKays ground. This later became known as Chaplin Reserve, home to Sunshine George Cross." (Australian Online Football Museum). Drennan also played senior football for Sunshine United in its inaugural year, 1924 (that is, when he wasn't touring NZ with the Australian team!).

Chaplin Reserve and pavilion today. Thank Boo.

Aerial shot of Railway Reserve, bottom right, c. 1920s. The Harvester works are in the background.
State Library of Victoria.

Lest we get carried away with the sweetness and light of a community getting behind a new soccer venture, we need also to listen to the voices of opposition to get a sense of the context in which soccer clubs were trying to grow in Melbourne and elsewhere. "Dinkum Aussie', a correspondent to the Sunshine Advocate penned the following letter in 1927:

(To the Editor.)
Sir,-It was stated by two returned soldiers, and reported in your paper, that an attempt is being made by some Johnny-Come-Latelys to supplant our national game of football with an importation. On making inquiry, I find that a local school teacher is working might and main against the national game, and I am told that at least one of the local soccer team is an Australian. I should like to suggest that the local football club report the matter to the head office in town, so that it may be brought before the Minister. If Victoria is good enough to live in, its games should be good enough to play. -Yours, etc.,  (5 Nov 1927)

'Dinkum Aussie' received a reply from a writer using the nom de plume', Audi Alteram Partem ('the other side should be heard'), who concluded his letter:
There is room enough in this vast country for both [codes]. And, in closing, I would like to add that the local Soccerites showed their sportsmanship this season in playing a team of Diggers, and running a social in aid of the Diggers' Xmas Tree Fund, when the whole of the proceeds were handed over.-Yours, etc., (12 Nov 1927)

The letter is moderate and written to explain how soccer is 'integrating' into Australian life. It also suggests that Sunshine's first team was formed just prior to the war. Dinkum Aussie's rejoinder is well-written and intelligent but extreme in its prejudice.
Sir,-- Although your soccer barracker assumes and ancient Dago phrase as a pen name, he is, beyond doubt, a true John Bull, and I shall refer to him, in no offensive spirit, as J.B. . . . J.B. is mistaken in thinking that I object to soccer "simply because it originated from the "Homeland." I object because it did NOT originate in the homeland. Australia is the true homeland of the Australian; and if J.B. is not prepared to become an Australian he should not be here. . .  Six generations of my blood have lived, or are living, on this continent; and if I am not an Australian my friend is not English, and we are both "foreigners;" surely a reductio ad absurdum. I do not agree with J.B.'s dictum that no game can make headway unless it has an international aspect. In the United States baseball has progressed from small beginnings, until it is to-day the national game of over 100 millions of people. In Australia our football has spread from Victoria to Tasmantia, South Australia, Western Australia, parts of New South Wales, and Queensland. If properly safeguarded against the assaults of immigrants, it will, in time, occupy in the public mind the same position that baseball occupies in the United States. I do not object to soccer as a game, it may be all that J.B. claiims for it. I object to its being introduced into Australian schools because it is part of an organised movement to destroy Australianisim; and a wiping out of the national game would encourage the destroyers in their designs. Imperialists are more active than they have ever been before; the indications are everywhere, if one cares to look. Anti-Australians, when they fly the Australian flag, place it beneath the Union Jack on the same pole, well aware of the fact that this is a sign of contempt and defiance. Would that Australians were generally as well aware of the significance of the double flying. I want no controversy with immigrants, though, frankly, I think that there are too many here now. I. am simply appealing to Australians to protest against Australian schools and teachlers being used in a campaign to destroy Australianism in any shape or form. If ever we are to fulfil our "manifest destiny," we must insist in 100 per cent. Australianism. --Yours, etc., (19 November 1927)
On one side of this story we have a culturally divergent group (Australians, Argentinians and one Kiwi) coming together to co-operate and play football and on the other we have what can only be described as a gushing of soccer-hating xenophobic bile.

This is not to let soccer off the hook for its own prejudices and stupidities but the contrast is a fundamental theme of Australian soccer history.

I'll do my best to trace the stories of those in the photo. It will be rewarding.

Thursday, 8 August 2019

100 years ago today 8 August 1919

Saturday August 2

V.A.B.F.A. Metropolitan League

  • Windsor 2  Albert Park 1  
  • Northumberland and Durham United 2  Spotswood 1 
  • Footscray Thistle 5  St Davids 0
  • Melbourne Thistle 0 Preston 0

The Herald

First Round, Doherty Cup.—
Spotswood v. N. and D., Medlicot;
Melbourne Thistle v. Preston, M'Cully;
Albert Park v. Footscray Thistle. Butler;
St. David's v. Windsor, Downie.
All matches will begin at 3.15.

Daily Standard (Brisbane, Qld. : 1912 - 1936), Friday 8 August 1919, page 8

A most interesting game will be played at Musgrave Park on Saturday, between Pineapple Hovers and Park Church, the kick-ofT being at 3.15. The Rovers are to date undefeated, but as Parks are now in full swing and have not been defeated in the second round, the game will be very close. St An drew's will meet Kangaroo Point in the early match, at 2 p.m. The team selected to play for Park Church is as follows :—Francis; Cameron, Jamieson, Blackburn, Clark, Ross, Salnsbury, Rathwell, Young, Hunter, and Had den.

Call and WA Sportsman (Perth, WA : 1918 - 1920), Friday 8 August 1919, page 2

The Late Cecil Jeffrey.
As Football Organiser. Sterling; Services to Game.
Thirteen or fourteen years ago Australian football was on the wane, and practically the whole of the schools had been won over to the soccer rules. The obvious conclusion was arrived at that if the schools and junior grades were not maintained there would soon come a time when the Australian game would be extinct. The devotees of the home code bestirred themselves to wrest back the lost territory and a battle royal ensued. 
Foremost in the struggle was the late Cecil Jeffrey, taken by the 'flu last week. It is interesting to recall his activities which are reviewed as follows in a copy of the "Fremantle Mail" of 1906: — 
"With the enthusiasm begot by a consciousness that there was some thing to fight for, the leading spirits of the Young Australia League have breathed the breath of vigorous life into their organisation. That a body existing solely to control football should have anything more elevating to strive for than the settlement of periodical club disputes seems an unusual thing to infer. But, as those who have followed the course of the League know, the germ with which the new organisation began was a desire to fortify the national winter game in the schools, where it was at the time threatened by an imported code. There was an Australian issue at stake. This drew many into the movement who would not, for the sake of sport alone, have been associated with it. There was a wish to place foremost things that were Australian, even though, so unimportant as football. It was this, which prompted Mr. C. Jeffrey and others with an inherent spirit of Australianism to throw vigor into the work of the League, which stands to day as the best organisation of its kind within the Commonwealth. Mr. Jeffrey retires to take up a long course of college training after two seasons of energetic effort, begun when the outlook seemed unpromising and numbers of others in similar positions held aloof, for at that period the cold glance of the official eye was feared. The fear which determined others was almost wholly groundless and based upon fabrication, but that made the acceptance of office none the less Commendable, for if a man fearlessly faces a pointed revolver, presumed to be charged with death-dealing cartridges, his courage is not discounted if it is afterwards discovered that the weapon was unloaded. Many duties fell to the young official to perform, and the position of the division which he practically controls stands as the best proof of their, performance. Last year — the first of the League's existence — was beset with big tasks, all of which were negotiated. This season saw the club's increase front six to fourteen, involving the management of nearly one hundred matches. In addition, there were country tours to Northam, Mundijong, and the gold-fields, all of which required, organising. The ex-scholars' section was formed, a secretary was wanted, and the subject of this sketch began the present season with the dual position of secretary both to the schools' and ex-scholars 'executives.' The football year is just closing, anda retrospective survey of its events in League circles at the port shows splendid success, all of which is associated with Mr. Jeffrey's services. To this writer the most gratifying feature of the work to which tribute is paid here is that they were impelled by a loyalty to something Australian. And that is refreshing to find in these days when so many youthful and aged Australians are faithless to the products or works of their own countrymen, and the howl of the nation-breaker falls with jarring notes on the sensitive ears of those who yearn for a self-reliant, self-respecting and united Australian people. More for a love of Australia than for any attachment to the game itself, Secretary Jeffrey worked devotedly for the League and served it with unswerving loyalty. Summed up, his two years association with the movement were years of honest, useful and enthusiastic work, the fruits of which must be of enduring value to the Australian game.

Friday, 2 August 2019

Spotlight on Soccer, Argus 1950

In 1950, the Argus newspaper produced a series of 18 weekly articles mostly called 'Spotlight on Soccer', focusing on individual soccer clubs around Melbourne. They are a mixed bunch but the give tremendous snapshots of the state of play in Melbourne's elite teams. They also give some useful if brief club histories. Produced on the cusp of the strong emergence of continental European influence on the makeup of Australian soccer they also create a picture that is soon to fade.



Argus mistakenly lists this as #9

#12 Fifers

First played in 1923. 15 teams in the town.