Season preview 1913-14: Oldham Athletic (Athletic News)


August 25, 1913
Some clubs can spend thousands of pounds on ground improvements without worrying about such things as bank overdrafts and personal loans from directors. Oldham Athletic are not yet in that happy position. But the officials have embarked on expensive improvements; indeed as some evidence of their determination to ultimately succeed in the financial sense, money has been spent every season to induce the public to support the club.

When I visited the ground during the week players were at practice, while busy workmen were hurrying on the completion of a huge stand which will ultimately run the length of the ground on the south side.

It has always been a complaint of visiting teams that the dressing accommodation at Boundary Park was unworthy of a League club, but this cannot now be said, for after visiting all the best grounds the directors have resolved that Oldham Athletic shall not be behind in this respect. The terracing is practically complete now. It is 120 yards long, with a six inch rise to each of the 22 steps, and provision is made for 5,000 spectators.

The new stand, which is almost entirely of brickwork, ironwork, and concrete, and will have 1,092 tip-up chairs in the centre, is almost complete, and for the present there will be seating for 2,500 and ultimately for 4,000 spectators. The holding capacity of the ground has been increased from 36,000 to 45,000, probably more, and, moreover, for the first time the spectators can get on three sides of the ground at the popular charge of sixpenny.

The roof of the old stand has been removed to the Chadderton-end and has provided covered accommodation for 1,200 people, while two new wings on the north stand (previously known as the new stand) have also been thrown open to the enthusiast who pays sixpenny for admission.

Coming to the players, no men with big reputation had been engaged until late on Saturday night, when the transfer of Charles Roberts was secured from Manchester United. As Roberts bears a world-wide reputation, it is unnecessary for me to enlarge on his abilities, but the officials of the Oldham club are to be heartily congratulated on their enterprise.

This is further evidence of their desire to be in the forefront. The secretary was rather smart in signing Philip Warhurst, a full-back from Gainsborough, for he had observed that the Trinity had failed to place him on either the transfer or retained list. If he is as good as he is big, he will do.

Another full-back who has shaped well in practice games is Bland Pickup, who rendered good service to Bacup last season.

Valentine Lawrence is the best known of the recruits, by reason of his association with Manchester City, and besides playing at half-back he can assist the forwards. True, he only figured in one League game last season, but in previous campaigns he took part in 19 League matches.

John Hampson, late of South Liverpool, is a speedy outside right, and Hugh Lester is an outside left, who prior to joining Liverpool last season, was with St. Helens Recreation.

William Douglas is a Scotsman who played centre forward for Cardiff last season, and helped them to secure promotion to the First Division of the Southern League. Such men as McGowan, Birks, Dixon, Caldwell, and Pilkington are also expected to develop.

Of players who were with the club last season Bill Bradbury has gone to Scunthorpe, but such capable players as Claire Wilson and Stephen Buxton have yet to secure an engagement.

The full list of players engaged is appended: –
Howard Matthews.
Birthplace: Oldbury.
Position: Goalkeeper.
Height: 5ft. 8in.
Weight: 11st. 10lb.

Ted Taylor.
Birthplace: Liverpool.
Position: Goalkeeper.
Height: 5ft. 8in.
Weight: 11st. 10lb.

Jimmy Hodson.
Birthplace: Horwich.
Position: Right full-back.
Height: 5ft. 9in.
Weight: 12st. 8lb.

Billy Cook.
Birthplace: Preston.
Position: Left full-back.
Height: 5ft. 8in.
Weight: 12st. 8lb.

Billy Cope.
Birthplace: Stoke-on-Trent.
Position: Left full-back.
Height: 5ft. 6½in-
Weight: 11st. 4lb.

J. Caldwell.
Birthplace: Eccles.
Position: Left full-back.
Height: 5ft. 8in.
Weight: 11st. 2lb.

Phil Warhurst.
Birthplace: Chapel-en-le-F.
Position: Full back.
Height: 5ft. 11½in.
Weight: 13st. 5lb.

Bland Pickup.
Birthplace: Waterfoot.
Position: Full back.
Height: 5ft. 10in.
Weight: 12st. 9lb.

W. McGowan.
Birthplace: Wallasey.
Position: Full back.
Height: 5ft. 8½in.
Weight: 11st.

Hugh Moffat.
Birthplace: Congleton.
Position: Right half-back.
Height: 5ft. 10in.
Weight: 12st. 6lb.

Val Lawrence.
Birthplace: Dundee.
Position: Right half-back.
Height: 5ft. 7½in.
Weight: 11st. 6lb.

Arthur Dixon.
Birthplace: Oldham.
Position: Half back.
Height: 5ft. 8in.
Weight: 11st. 8lb.

Charlie Roberts.
Birthplace: Darlington.
Position: Centre half-back.
Height: 5ft. 10½in.
Weight: 13st.

David Wilson.
Birthplace: Irving.
Position: Left half-back.
Height: 5ft. 7½in.
Weight: 12st. 2lb.

M. Birks.
Birthplace: Ellesmere Port.
Position: Half-back.
Height: 5ft. 9½in.
Weight: 11st.

Ellis Hollis.
Birthplace: Darwen.
Position: Right half-back.
Height: 5ft. 7in.
Weight: 11st. 6lb.

Elliot Pilkington.
Birthplace: Radcliffe.
Position: Half-back.
Height: 5ft. 9½in.
Weight: 11st. 7lb.

Ollie Tummon.
Birthplace: Sheffield.
Position: Outside right.
Height: 5ft. 7in.
Weight: 12st.

Joe Walters.
Birthplace: Stourbridge.
Position: Inside right.
Height: 5ft. 9in.
Weight: 11st. 10lb.

Gilbert Kemp.
Birthplace: Wallasey.
Position: Centre forward.
Height: 5ft. 9in.
Weight: 11st. 10lb.

George Woodger.
Birthplace: Croydon.
Position: Inside left.
Height: 5ft. 6½in.
Weight: 11st. 10lb.

Joe Donnachie.
Birthplace: Kilwinning.
Position: Outside left.
Height: 5ft. 7in.
Weight: 11st. 4lb.

Alf Toward.
Birthplace: Castleside.
Position: Central forward.
Height: 5ft. 8in.
Weight: 11st. 6lb.

Billy Douglas.
Birthplace: Perth.
Position: Centre forward.
Height: 5ft. 8½in.
Weight: 12st.

George Joynson.
Birthplace: Wallasey.
Position: Forward.
Height: 5ft. 8in.
Weight: 11st. 8lb.

Arthur Gee.
Birthplace: Earlestown.
Position: Inside left.
Height: 5ft. 6½in.
Weight: 11st.

Hugh Lester.
Birthplace: St. Helens.
Position: Outside left.
Height: 5ft. 8in.
Weight: 11st. 8lb.

John Hampson.
Birthplace: Liverpool.
Position: Outside right.
Height: 5ft. 4in.
Weight: 10st. 10lb.
(The Athletic News, 25-08-1913)

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