With no fewer than twenty-seven teams competing in Southport in 1885-86, Southport reduced their annual subscriptions to five shillings. Boarding was erected around a portion of the ground as protection against the weather. This did not prevent a match against Burscough being reduced to half an hour each way due to ‘Boisterous and disagreeable weather’
In October, an understrength Southport lost 12-1 at Darwen. The following week, although Southport led Astley 2-0 at half time, they were beaten 3-2 in an English Cup-tie. Nevertheless, Southport again demonstrated their local superiority by beating Southport Wanderers 4-0, in the final of the Charity Cup.
At the Wanderers AGM in June 1886, at which a representative of the Southport club was present, they invited Southport to amalgamate. Southport Wanderers AGM Report; 11th June 1886
Southport Football Club had severed their connections with the Athletic Society. In the Athletic Society’s Annual report the Committee regretted ‘their unfortunate connection with the Football Club which resulted in the Society incurring an expenditure on their account of £88-3 shillings!!
After five years existence. Southport’s first football club folded. At least six former Southport players and many of their supporters transferred their affiliations to Southport Wanderers who, although sustaining a loss of £4 on the previous season, could face the future with renewed confidence.