Channel: Before The 'D'...Association Football around the world, 1863-1937.
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North v South 1870


The Sportsman- 15.12.70

Charles Alcock was always keen to promote the image of the Football Association as being a national body under which the various codes of the game would come together. The truth of the matter was that even 7 years after the Association's foundation their sphere of influence was only just beginning to spread beyond the metropolitan clubs.
Alcock had promoted the idea of inter county matches and in 1870 had started the 'International' series between teams representing England and Scotland (again, featuring almost exclusively London based players on both sides).
In December 1870 Alcock hit on the novel idea of a North vs South match to further the notion of the Association has having nationwide influence.
Most clubs in the north and midlands tended to follow either the Sheffield Rules or local variations. It was only in 1870 that the then leading midlands clubs had  agreed to play exclusively by the rules of the Association.
A list of FA member clubs from 1870 shows the following clubs form the north and midlands:
Bramham College York.
Donington Grammar School (Lincolnshire)
Garrick (Sheffield)
Hull College
Leamington College
Nottingham (Notts County)

(10 out of a total membership of 39).

The North therefore were bolstered by a number of metropolitan players (Alcock included) on the basis of their northern birthplaces. North of London seems to have been far north enough, though in the case of 'Scotland's' Quintin Hogg London itself counted as the north.
The Sheffield and Rotherham Independent (20.12.70) reported that: the rules were those of the of the Football Association, and the principle of 'no hands' was strictly maintained, although there was an amount of arm work visible throughout the game, which we hope to see reduced, if not entirely abolished , on future occasions.
Press reports of the game itself were very positive, describing the game as being the best contest seen for some time, with the teams as evenly matched and ceaseless in their efforts. This despite the fact that the heavy ground and  slippery conditions rendered dribbling impossible. The play was described as being superior to that seen in the recent England v Scotland match.
The South won 1-0 thanks to an 87th minute goal from Crake, shooting from a Howard cross following a 'rush' by the South's forwards. Reports mention the South's familiarity with each other's play as being the factor that separated the 2 elevens.


J. Kirkpatrick  (A Scott)  (goal)

Civil Service

Captain (and selector) of Scotland in the Alcock internationals. The humorous pseudonym appeared in several contemporary press reports.

J.C Whelan  (back)

Sheffield FC

Sheffield FC were the originators and guardians of the Sheffield Rules, which still held sway over football in South Yorkshire and much of the midlands well into the 1870s. During the 1870s the Sheffield and ‘London’ rules grew closer.

Q.Hogg   (half-back)


London born Hogg was actually a Wanderers player – he had represented Scotland in the ‘Alcock International’ the previous month.

C.W Alcock


When he had captained ‘England’ against ‘Scotland’ the previous month Alcock’s club was listed as Harrow Pilgrims. His connection to the North in this instance comes from his place of birth (Durham being the county in which he was born).

T.C Hooman

North Worcestershire

As with Alcock above and the various players listed as ‘Scotland’ Hooman was qualified for the north by his place of birth (Kidderminster). His club was Wanderers.

E.H Greenhalgh

Notts (County)

Harwood Greenhalgh represented England in the first ‘official’ international in 1872 and played for Notts County from 1867-1883.

G. Holden


E.S Gibney


Newark and Lincoln had been among a group of Midlands clubs that had, in October 1870, resolved to play by The Football Association rules from then on, (The Sportsman - Wednesday 05 October 1870).

A.F Kinnaird


Arthur Kinnaird was primarily a Wanderers player at this point in time.  Future Scotland international.

W.E Rowlinson


Originally named was C.E Nepean (Scotland) an Oxford University and Clapham Rovers  player who had represented Scotland in the ‘Alcock International’ the previous month.

His replacement, Rowlinson, was another to use his place of birth as a qualification for the north, his club being Clapham Rovers .

C.L Rothera

Notts Club

Rothera, who was later Borough Coroner for Nottingham, was also the Hon, Sec of County in 1870.


A.Morten (goal)                                               

Crystal Palace

Represented Scotland in an Alcock international and England in an official international.

C.W Stephenson (back)                                 

Westminster School

E. Lubbock  (half -back)

West Kent

R.W.S Vidal

Westminster School

Future England International.

W.P Crake


C.J Chenery

Crystal Palace

Future England International.

M.P Betts

West Kent

Monty Betts scored the winning goal in the first FA Cup Final, He played for England in Alcock Internationals and official internationals and was also a referee/ umpire at international level.

A.J Baker


R. Franks

C.C.C (Clapham)

R.S.F Walker

Clapham Rovers

Future England International.

A.W Howard


A Wanderers player.

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