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1925/26 Season Summary

Copyright Historical Football Kits
and reproduced by kind permission

After making a determined bid for promotion the previous season 1925-26 was a
disaster, and the club only just avoided having to apply for re-election. The
sudden deterioration is difficult to understand since essentially the same players
were available. Injuries and the loss of form of key players were contributory
factors while the team undoubtedly missed the influence of Frank Jefferis, who
had returned to Preston as trainer. His generalship and experience had counted
for much in holding the side together.

Of the newcomers only Elias MacDonald, a dashing outside-left, and George Sapsford,
from Manchester United—at £250 a record signing-made much impression.
Mention should also be made of Johnny Ball, a Banks lad, who played a few games
at centre-forward scoring a hat-trick against Wigan Borough, and later made good
with Sheffield Wednesday.

Billy Little, for so long tenacious and powerful in the tackle, fell away. Even “Salty” Halsall
suffered a complete loss of form which resulted in him losing his place in the
side. The goalkeeping
spat had been Hallsall’s virtually without a break since the early weeks of the
1921-22 season. The
defence, for so long the side’s strength, crumbled and within the space of one
week in April the ‘Port lost 5-0 at Hartlepools, 6-1 at Bradford PA. and 7-1 al
home to Rochdale. This latter is still the club’s biggest home defeat. In addition
they lost 9-0 against Manchester United in the Lancashire Senior Cup.

The support dwindled-gate receipts fell from almost £7,000 in 1925 to £5,683—and
a staggering £2,159 8s. 8d. was lost on the year.

In April, Edwin Clayton resigned as secretary, a position he had held continuously
since 1E08,
and he was appointed a Director. The services of trainer Jimmy Fraser and groundsman
Thompson
were dispensed with for economic reasons. Fraser had been appointed Groundsman-Trainer
by Harry
Rimmer, chairman of the Central Club, in 1911, and had become Head Trainer in
1921.

In the F.A. Cup the club reached the third round for the first time since 1922
before losing 5-2 at Southend. On the run of play the score was a travesty of
justice and the game was marred by some bad refereeing decisions. Southport were
represented as follows: Halsall; Tyler, Mulligan; Sinclair, Little, Bimson; Aitkin,
Sambrook. Oxley, Sapsford and MacDonald.

At the end of the season the staff was severely pruned and, of the more notable
departures Billy Little was signed by Lancaster Town, Jack Barber by Halifax Town,
and Fergus Aitkin by Bradford Park Avenue. Most surprisingly of all, Elias MacDonald,
although an ever-present, was not retained, and joined Barrow.

Edgar Raynor, a well-known fishmonger and poultry dealer and prominent Methodist
layman in the district, was co-opted to the board. He ‘had previously been chairman.
of the Southport and District Football League Executive, and was to serve as a
Director for 32 years-26 of them as Chairman.

Season Summary reproduced with Permission from:
The Sandgrounder (Southport FC Matchday Programme) Article Series. Southport through the seasons. The League History of Southport FC, Compiled by Michael p. Braham and Geoffrey S. Wilde

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