December 30, 1899
Playing for Liverpool Reserves against Manchester City Reserves, on Boxing Day, the veteran Fred Geary received an injury which, I am afraid, will put an ignominious end to his long and distinguished football career.
A City back accidentally “kneed” him in the stomach, with the result, I am told, that Geary has been ruptured.
Even if his injury is less serious, Fred Geary is unlikely to be seen in the football field again.
His career really ended some years ago, when, as an Evertonian, he met with an accident at Sunderland. I think I can see him now, a minute from time – it was a Cup tie – streaking up the field like lightning if so be he might score at the last and save the game.
He came an awful long bang against one of the Sunderland backs – or the back banged against him – it comes to the same thing – and down went Fred, his head striking the side post with a sickening thud.
They picked him up – dead; no, not quite, but senseless, and from that shock Geary never fairly recovered.
It had knocked all the fight out of him; he grew timorous, shirked a charge, and by-and-by Everton got rid of him, and he went over to Liverpool:
I feel convinced that Geary would have been as good a man as ever if he could only rid himself of his nervousness. But the recollection of his accident at Sunderland always daunted him, and he gave up First League football.
Occasionally he assisted Liverpool Reserves, and when had a free field he could take the ball along as of yore; while his old, tricky style of play – the prevalent system in his prime – looked exceedingly quaint in contrast with the clap-dash style that is now all the vogue.
In spite of all his precautions, poor Fred has met with the injury which he most dreaded, and as I say, his football career, I fear, is finished.
(Lancashire Evening Post: December 30, 1899)