Did Villa score the first League Goal?

Did Villa Score the first League Goal?

As every decent history book says, Aston Villa started the first Football League in the world when Secretary William McGregor called for leading clubs to play together regularly in 1888. That is why his statue is there outside the Trinity Road stand. And until recently we had the record for scoring the first goal on the first Saturday – though it was an own goal.

The own goal is still accepted, but recent research suggests it was not the first goal scored on that first Saturday. In his excellent book THE ORIGINS OF THE FOOTBALL LEAGUE (Amberley 2014) Mark Metcalf has a different story, though it is still true that the first goal scored by Villa in the League was the own goal by Gershom Cox against Wolverhampton, away in a 2-2 draw.

The belief that this was the first ever League goal was because it was reported to have happened half an hour after the kick off at 3pm – other games kicking off later. Metcalf found a researcher, Robert Boyling, at the Newspaper Library in Colindale, who discovered an advert saying the game would start at 3.30 on 8th September 1888. So Cox put through his own goal at 4pm.

In the games at Everton V Accrington and Stoke V Albion did not have goals before half time, but reports in the Bolton and Preston games kicked off at 3.45 and 3.50. The report of the Bolton Wanderers V Notts County game is the key. The reporter wrote that “The County kicked off with the sun at their backs, the visiting right made an attack that was cleared by Bethell but Davenport coming away transferred the play to the other end, and in two minutes from the start Kenny had scored a fine goal for the Wanderers”. Kenny was Kenny Davenport and as Bolton kicked off at 3.45 his first goal was 3.47 so 13 minutes before Cox put through his own net.

Kenny Davenport scored the first goal in League Football in World History and we can forget Cox’s own goal. The Villa – Wolves game ended 2-2.

Trevor Fisher               20 8 18

Did Villa Score the first League Goal?

As every decent history book says, Aston Villa started the first Football League in the world when Secretary William McGregor called for leading clubs to play together regularly in 1888. That is why his statue is there outside the Trinity Road stand. And until recently we had the record for scoring the first goal on the first Saturday – though it was an own goal.

The own goal is still accepted, but recent research suggests it was not the first goal scored on that first Saturday. In his excellent book THE ORIGINS OF THE FOOTBALL LEAGUE (Amberley 2014) Mark Metcalf has a different story, though it is still true that the first goal scored by Villa in the League was the own goal by Gershom Cox against Wolverhampton, away in a 2-2 draw.

The belief that this was the first ever League goal was because it was reported to have happened half an hour after the kick off at 3pm – other games kicking off later. Metcalf found a researcher, Robert Boyling, at the Newspaper Library in Colindale, who discovered an advert saying the game would start at 3.30 on 8th September 1888. So Cox put through his own goal at 4pm.

In the games at Everton V Accrington and Stoke V Albion did not have goals before half time, but reports in the Bolton and Preston games kicked off at 3.45 and 3.50. The report of the Bolton Wanderers V Notts County game is the key. The reporter wrote that “The County kicked off with the sun at their backs, the visiting right made an attack that was cleared by Bethell but Davenport coming away transferred the play to the other end, and in two minutes from the start Kenny had scored a fine goal for the Wanderers”. Kenny was Kenny Davenport and as Bolton kicked off at 3.45 his first goal was 3.47 so 13 minutes before Cox put through his own net.

Kenny Davenport scored the first goal in League Football in World History and we can forget Cox’s own goal. The Villa – Wolves game ended 2-2.

Trevor Fisher               20 8 18

Comments are closed.