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20 vs. Ireland
Saturday, 24 February 1883
Association Friendly Match

England 7 Ireland 0 [4-0]

Liverpool Cricket Ground (The Lower (Railway) End), Aigburth Road, Aigburth, Liverpool, Lancashire
Kick-off (GMT) 'shortly after'; 'at ten minutes past three'; 'ten minutes after the advertised time.'
Attendance: 'between 2,000 and 3,000 spectators persons assembled'; 'fully 3,000 spectators present'.

Harry Goodhart kicked-off Donald Martin won the toss
[1-0] Olly Whateley 15
'shot it splendidly' from a Cursham pass
[2-0] Nevill Cobbold 17
 'from a scrimmage, put it through neatly'
[3-0] Nevill Cobbold 19
 'hot shot'

[4-0] Arthur Dunn 44

the fiftieth goal scored by England
[5-0] Olly Whateley 46
 'clinking shot'

[6-0] Arthur Dunn 80

 'long hot shot'

[7-0] Frank Pawson 88
 'put the ball through'
"The weather though cold, was brilliantly fine"

Match Summary

Officials [umpires and referees are of equal relevance]


Team Records



Morton Peto Betts
35 (30 August 1847)
Middlesex, Old Harrovians FC
John McRedy McAlery
34 (19 November 1848)
county Down

Irish FA Hon.Secretary
played for England in 1877 played against England in 1882
K. McDowall
Scottish FA Secretary

England Team



No official ranking system established;
ELO rating 2nd
Colours: "...their opponents in white".
Capt: Jack Hudson¹
P 1 - W 1 - D 0 - L 0 - F 7 - A 0.
Selectors: The Football Association Committee, with Secretary Charles W. Alcock having the primary influence, chose the team on Wednesday, 14 February 1883.
P 18 - W 7 - D 2 - L 9 - F 54 - A 48.
first to debut & also captain since 1875
England Lineup
(record-equalling low six changes to the previous match)
  Swepstone, H. Albemarle 24
41 days
14 January 1859 G Pilgrims FC & Corinthians FC 5 15ᵍᵃ
most gk apps
  de Paravicini, Percy J. 20
224 days
15 July 1862 RB Cambridge University AFC & Old Etonians AFC 2 0
103   Moore, Henry T. 21
242 days
27 June 1861 LB Notts County FC 1 0
the seventh County player to represent England
104   Hudson, John 22
136 days
11 October 1860 Half
Heeley FC, Sheffield FC & Wednesday FC 1 0
the fifth Wednesday player to represent England only app 1883
  MacRae, Stuart 27
79 days
7 December 1855
in Bengal, India
Notts County FC & Corinthians FC 2 0
105 Cobbold W. Nevill 20
20 days
4 February 1863 IR Cambridge University AFC & Old Carthusians AFC 1 2
youngest to score on debut & twice so far
  Cursham, Henry A. 23
89 days
27 November 1859 OR Notts County FC & Corinthians FC 6 2
  Goodhart, Harry C. 24
222 days
17 July 1858 Centre
Old Etonians AFC & Corinthians FC 2 0
106 Dunn, Arthur T.B. 22
196 days
12 August 1860 Cambridge University AFC & Old Etonians AFC 1 2
107 Whateley, Oliver 20
200 days
8 August 1862 IL Aston Villa FC 1 2
the third Villa player to represent England
108 Pawson, Francis W. 21
324 days
6 April 1861 OL Cambridge University AFC 1 1


not named, but in the event Swepstone could not take up his position, then the Barnes FC's goalkeeper, Percy Bates, was asked to fill the vacancy.

team notes:

Norman Bailey (Clapham Rovers FC), Jack Hargreaves (Blackburn Rovers FC) and Clem Mitchell (Upton Park FC) all withdrew from the England line-up on 20 February. Hudson, Cobbold and Arthur Bambridge were replacements. Arthur Cursham and Bambridge then dropped out, replaced by Whateley and Pawson.
Harry Cursham's brother, Arthur, also played for England 1876-82. Arthur Bambridge's brothers Charlie (1879-82) and Ernest (1876) played for England.


Nevill Cobbold's second goal is the fiftieth scored by England in ten½ years
This is the second time (1878-79) that England have won two matches in a row, but only the first time they have not conceded a goal for two matches in a row.
By completing this match without conceding another goal, Albemarle Swepstone took the clean sheet record to 181 minutes.
2-2-6 Swepstone -
de Paravicini, Moore -
MacRae, Hudson -
Cursham, Cobbold, Goodhart, Dunn, Whateley, Pawson.
Averages: Age 22 years 228 days Appearances/Goals 2.1 0.2


Ireland Team



No official ranking system established;
ELO rating 4th
Colours: "The Irish in blue costumes"
Capt: Donald Martin¹
P 1 - W 0 - D 0 - L 1 - F 0 - A 7.
Selectors: Team chosen by the Irish Selection Committee, on Wednesday 14 February 1883.
Ireland Lineup
  Rankine, James nk not known G Alexander FC 1 7ᵍᵃ
  Watson, James nk not known RB Ulster FC 1 0
  Rattray, David nk not known LB Avoniel FC 2 0
  Molyneux, Thomas B. 25 or
19 July 1857 or 1868 Half
Ligoniel FC 1 0
possibly the youngest ever opposition player
  Martin, Donald C. 23/24 1859 Cliftonville FAC 3 0
final app 1882-83
Davison, Dr. John R. 22
305 days
25 April 1860
in Hunslet, England
OR Cliftonville FAC 3 0
  McWha, William B.R. 22/23 1860 IR Cliftonville FAC 3 0
  Morrow, William J. 31
100 days
16 November 1851 Centre
Moyola Park FC 1 0
  Potts, Renwick M. 24/25 1858 Cliftonville FAC 1 0
  Reid, John nk not known IL Ulster FC 1 0
  Spiller, Edward A. 21
155 days
22 September 1861 OL Cliftonville FAC 1 0


Ted Spiller was the named reserve.

team notes:

James Buckle and Alexander Dill were in the original left-side forwards in the starting eleven. Their places went to Reid and Spiller.
2-2-6 Rankine -
Watson, Rattray -
Martin, Molyneux -
Davison, McWha, Morrow, Potts, Reid, Spiller.
Averages: Age tbc Appearances/Goals 1.6 0.0
"In the evening the players and their friends sat down to dinner under the auspices of the English Association, at the Bear's Paw Restaurant, Lord-street, and the proceedings passed off very pleasantly" - Liverpool Mercury, Monday, 26 February 1883


Match Report - Sporting Life, Tuesday, 27 February 1883 In Other News.....

Between 2,000 and 3,000 persons assembled on the ground of the Liverpool Cricket Club at Aigburth on Saturday, to witness the international Association game. The weather though cold, was brilliantly fine. An excellent contest ensued; the Englishmen, however did the entire scoring, and H. Cursham showed really brilliant form throughout. Pawson, Cobbold, and Dunn also made excellent runs, and de Paravicini and Hudson behind were most difficult to get past. For Ireland, M'Wha, Morrow, and Reid made several fine runs, and Watson at full back showed a very good defence. Ireland, winning the toss, Goodhart started the ball for England. Cursham soon had the ball in front of his opponents' goal, where some nice heading and passing took place, Whateley ultimately causing Rankin to pick up and throw out; a brace of corners immediately followed to the English team, but in each case Cursham kicked behind. M'Wha here took the ball well down to the centre, but Cursham got it back, and, centering to Dunn, the latter's shot was again cleverly fisted out. Dunn and Cursham each in turn followed with excellent shots. Rattray defended well, and, passing to Reid, the latter ran down to the mid-field, where M'Crae stopped him. Cursham again made a splendid run, and, centering to Whateley, the latter shot the ball through. Morrow, Potts, and Davison now made a combined rush, and got past all opposition, until de Paravicini returned the play finely to the centre. M'Wha and Davison here cleverly got through their opponents, causing Swepstone to send behind. The corner was well taken away, and Whateley sent the ball to Pawson, the latter player centering to Cobbold, who shot it through. Immediately after Pawson again came away, and passed to Dunn, who falling, Cobbold took possession, again scoring. A corner by Pawson was followed by  Cobbold making another excellent shot, and after a corner to England, two good runs were made by M'Wha, Morrow and Reid, stopped by de Paravicini. The play for some time was now even until Cobbold had a chance, and centred to Dunn, who added a fourth goal, and 'Half-time!' was called. Potts restarted for Ireland, and Dunn was at once busy, but over-running it, Whateley sent it flying through. Morrow and Reid then ran down, and the latter had a chance, but his shot went over the tape. Again, Morrow, with Reid and spiller, got close in, but Hudson saved the goal. Dunn, by a long, low shot, next scored goal number six. Another corner to England. Morrow took away to mid-field, but 'hands' gave a free-kick, which de Paravicini put nicely to Pawson, the latter giving the final kick, and scoring the seventh goal. 'Time' was almost immediately afterwards called, leaving England victorious by seven goals to nil.

  Blackburn Olympic's F.A Cup run continued as they brushed aside Druids, the Welsh Cup holders, 4-1 to progress to the semi-finals for the first time. They went on to become the first northern club to lift the trophy.

It was on 23 February 1883 that Charles Parnell, the leader of the Irish Parliamentary Party, defiantly tried to deflect criticism of his suspected support of the violent attacks on opponents of the Irish Land League.

On Saturday, at Aigburth, near Liverpool, the second annual match was played between England and Ireland according to the rules of the Football Association. Ireland was successful in the toss, and at ten minutes past 3 Goodhart kicked off for England. Before a quarter of an hour had expired, Whateley kicked a goal for England; this score was rapidly augmented by a second, secured by Cobbold, and, prior to half-time, the last-named player and Dunn obtained two more. Positions having been reversed, the Irishmen strove hard to retrieve their losses, but without effect; while, on the other hand, Whateley, Dunn, and Pawson shot the ball under the bar for the home team.  - The Times, Monday, 26 February 1883

Source Notes  
Jonny Dewart at Northern Ireland's Footballing Greats
Cris Freddi's England Football Factbook
The Football Association Yearbook
Original Newspaper Reports