April 29, 1899
Match: Football League, First Division, at Villa Park, kick-off: 15:30.
Aston Villa – Liverpool 5-0 (5-0).
Attendance: 41,357; gate receipt: £1,558.
Referee: Mr. Aaron Scragg (Crewe). Linesmen: J. Baynton (Wolverhampton) and S. Black (Burton).
Aston Villa (2-3-5): Billy George; Howard Spencer, Albert Evans; Tommy Bowman, Jimmy Cowan, Jimmy Crabtree; Charles Athersmith, Jack Devey, Billy Garraty, Fred Wheldon, Steve Smith.
Liverpool (2-3-5): Bill Perkins; Archie Goldie, Billy Dunlop; Rab Howell, Charlie Wilson, Alex Raisbeck (C); Jack Cox, John Walker, George Allan, Hugh Morgan, Tom Robertson.
The goals: 1-0 Devey (4 min.), 2-0 Devey, 3-0 Wheldon, 4-0 Crabtree, 5-0 Wheldon.
There was a scene of immense enthusiasm when the League cup was presented by Mrs Bentley, wife of the president of the League. Mr Bentley, in a happy little speech, said: –
“It require no apology from the League to present this cup at the conclusion of the match to the winners. It is an unusual proceeding, but this has been an unusual match. The League was formed in 1888, and from that time to this it has never been left to the last match to decide the championship. There is a great credit in winning the English Cup, but, with all due respect, there is more ability displayed in winning this cup. I don’t think the Villa ought to have this valuable trophy after losing the English Cup, but we hope they will return it safe and sound next season, if they do not keep it again. We have heard a great deal of talk of the Villa having had an understanding over their two previous matches. I should not have thought any one would have credited that a club of the standing of the Villa – in fact, any League club – would have descended to such tactics; and surely, after today’s match, everyone must be satisfied of the ability of the Villa to win by five clear goals. I congratulate them very heartily on winning the cup for the fourth time, a record in the competition.”
Captain Devey had, of course, an ovation when he took the cup from Mrs Bentley’s hands. He expressed gratification at winning, said he should have been very disappointed had they lost, and then said that in their hour of jubilation – they ought to remember the other team. He hoped if the Villa did not win the League championship next year Liverpool would.
With cheers for both teams the pleasant proceedings ended.
(Sheffield Independent, 01-05-1899)
Jimmy Crabtree, Aston Villa (Lloyd’s Weekly News: February 3, 1895):
Charles Athersmith, Aston Villa (Lloyd’s Weekly News: November 6, 1892):
Jack Devey, Aston Villa (Lloyd’s Weekly News: March 24, 1895):