1923 FA Cup Final

1923 FA Cup Final

West Ham began the competition with a win away to Hull City in a match which produced five goals. In the second round they were held to a draw away to Brighton & Hove Albion but won the replay 1–0 at home. In the third round the "Hammers" defeated Plymouth Argyle 2–0, but found the fourth round tough going against Southampton. The first match at the Boleyn Ground, West Ham's stadium, ended in a 1–1 draw, as did the replay at The Dell in Southampton. A second replay was held at Villa Park, home of Aston Villa and finally produced a winner as West Ham won 1–0. In the semi-finals West Ham took on Derby County at Stamford Bridge, home of Chelsea, and claimed the win in a match which produced a total of seven goals.

Match summary


Such was the eagerness of fans and casual observers to attend the final at the new national stadium that vast numbers of people crammed into the stadium, far exceeding its official 127,000 capacity. The crowds overflowed onto the pitch as there was no room on the terraces. Estimates of the number of fans in attendance range from 240,000 [cite book | last=Bateson|first=Bill|coauthors=Albert Sewell | title=News of the World Football Annual 1992/93| publisher=Harper Collins | year=1992| id=ISBN 0-85543-188-1] to over 300,000. [cite book |last= Matthews|first= Tony|authorlink= |coauthors= |title= Football Firsts|year= 2006|publisher= Capella|location= |id= ISBN 1-8419-3451-8 ] It is estimated that another 60,000 were locked outside the gates. The FA were forced to refund 10% of the total gate money to fans unable to reach their seats.It fell to mounted policemen, among them P.C. George Scorey on his giant horse Billie, to try to clear the crowds from the pitch. P.C. Storey had not actually been on duty that day but answered a call for emergency assistance as the throng in the stadium grew.cite book |last= Holt|first= Nick|authorlink= |coauthors= Guy Lloyd|title= Total British Football|year= 2006|publisher= Flame Tree|location= |id= ISBN 1-8445-1403-X ]

Billie the horse was actually grey but appeared white in the primitive black and white newsreel footage of the era. Although a number of other horses were also involved, the "white" horse became legendary as the most visible in the news footage. In 2005, a public poll chose that the new footbridge near the rebuilt Wembley Stadium would be named the White Horse Bridge, in honour of Billie the White Horse.


Eventually the police were able to manoeuvre the crowds to just beyond the touchline, and the game went ahead approximately 45 minutes late with fans standing around the perimeter of the pitch. At one point West Ham defender Jack Tressdern became entangled in the crowd after taking a throw-in and was unable to return to the pitch in time to prevent Bolton's David Jack shooting for goal. Jack's shot hit a spectator who was standing pressed against the goal net, and knocked him unconscious. Bolton eventually won the match 2-0 to claim the Cup.

Match details

team1=Bolton Wanderers
score=2 – 0
report= [http://www.thefa.com/TheFACup/TheFACup/History/Postings/2003/11/46575.htm (Report)]
team2=West Ham United
goals1=Jack goal|2
Jack Smith goal|53
stadium=Wembley Stadium, London
attendance=126,047 (officially)
referee=D. H. Asson (West Bromwich)


External links

* [http://www.fa-cupfinals.co.uk/1923.htm Match report at www.fa-cupfinals.co.uk]
* [http://www.sportingchronicle.com/FACUP/1923.html FA Cup Final lineups]
* [http://www.rsssf.com/tablese/engcup1923.html 1922-23 Competition Results at rsssf.com]
* [http://www.thefa.com/TheFACup/TheFACup/History/Postings/2003/11/46575.htm Report at thefa.com]

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