Fanny Walden, Leeds City and Tottenham Hotspur

Saturday, October 2 – 1915
The future action of the Tottenham Hotspur club in the matter of Walden and Leeds City suggests that they are actuated by motives of vindictiveness rather than by a disinterested regard for the amenities of Association football in war time football.

In the first instance, when Leeds City, as an act of courtesy, informed the ‘Spurs that Walden had decided to play at Elland Road, the White Hart officials sent a very curt and unpolite note in reply.

The subsequent report to the League and the ruffing of the latter body that Walden was entitled to play with Leeds City, as being convenient for his work, will be recalled by the City followers.

Now Tottenham say that the circumstances in which Walden was “induced” to go to Leeds to wok were apparently not investigated, the mere fact that he did work there being sufficient thoroughly to justify the League in arriving at its decision.

Tottenham take the view that a more searching inquiry should be made, and they have accordingly brought the matter to the notice of the Football Association.

What the FA will do in the matter remains to be seen, but it will be surprising if they depart from the principle clearly laid down when the whole subject of this season’s football was under discussion, namely, that players being amateurs for the time being, were entitled to the privileges of amateurs and could obtain work where they liked and play football with whom they like, always providing, of course, that the employment was bona-fide and that the club gave no financial assistance of any sort or kind.

Leeds City did not “induce” Walden to come to Leeds, nor have they spent a penny piece improperly in connection with his change of clubs. Walden would not have played for Tottenham this season under any circumstances; to try to prevent him playing for Leeds City will strike the football world – including, I should say, the Management Committee of the Football League, whose assistance the Spurs did not want in connection with their London Combination – as a dog-in-the-manger policy, one quite out of keeping with the exceptional circumstances of the time.
(Yorkshire Evening Post, 02-10-1915)

Fanny Walden.
Fanny Walden

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