Football Friends Online – When 90 Mins Is Not EnoughFootball Superstars, High Wages and Huge Transfer Fees. I Blame The Welsh - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough Football Superstars, High Wages and Huge Transfer Fees. I Blame The Welsh - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough

Football Superstars, High Wages and Huge Transfer Fees. I Blame The Welsh

While City are progressing very nicely in the League with ‘that’ certain result against the guys from Salford at the weekend it is important that we also remember our history also. On this day in 1894, the first season after Ardwick had changed their name to Manchester City, a young Welshman by the name of Billy Meredith took the field for the blues.

His first game was a 5-4 defeat away to Newcastle although he wouldn’t score his first goals until the next game, his first home game against Newton Heath (later becoming United). Although he scored a brace it was not enough as City lost 5-2. In fact that season was such a crazy season for results that in 18 games, Meredith scored 12. Wins of 6-1, 7-1 and an 11-3 were countered by defeats of 8-0 and a couple of 5-2’s, meant City finished mid table scoring four more goals than the winners and only conceded three less than the second from bottom team.

Ironically Meredith almost never turned professional to play for City saying that he didn’t want paying for playing the game he loved! In the end he was signed as an amateur and a 5 pound transfer fee paid. Three months later he turned professional and in a game of two halves he started the first half of his career with City.

He was transferred to rivals United after the FA enquiry deemed City in breach of FA regulations. However he spent a quality eleven years at City scoring the only goal in City’s first FA Cup victory against Bolton.

Meredith did well for United as he had for City up until the out break of World War One. At that point, although United still had his registration, he turned out in City colors in the Lancashire League Section!

Then the legend returned to City in 1921, aged 47 and still playing with his toothpick in his mouth. His age meant that he wasn’t the spark for City that he used to be and his solitary goal came against Brighton in the FA Cup. It would be away to Newcastle that he would end his career at City and although it was an FA Cup Semi Final and so on neutral ground this, as you may remember, the fixture he kicked of his professional career with City.

The first celebrity football player and also advocate for the relaxation of restrictions on transfers and wages of players at the time. So partially the success that City are having now with the squad, being able to sign players for the money we do and pay them the wages we do is thanks to that Welshman all the back in the early 1900’s.

Billy Meredith attend the 1956 he travelled to Wembley to watch his beloved City win the FA Cup he himself lifted for the club fifty two years earlier. City captain on that day was also a Welshman, Roy Paul. It would be two years later that Meredith would leave us for the final time and less than two years after that Cup Final, Meredith passed away, aged 83.

 PA Cityboy

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