FA Cup First Round Replay
Team: Clutterbuck, Knowles, McConnell, Crawford, Hitch, Keech, Turnbull, Haywood, Bedingfield, White, Hannah
At the start of their 1899/1900 FA Cup campaign, QPR saw off London Welsh. The next preliminary stage victims were Fulham, followed by; West Hampstead, Wandsworth, the Civil Service and Luton Town. They were then drawn against Wolverhampton Wanderers in the First Round proper.
Wolves were one of the twelve founder members of the Football League in 1888 and FA Cup finalists later that season. They went on to lift the Cup for the first time in 1893, beating Everton 1-0.
On 26th January 1900, in front of a crowd of 10,000, Rangers drew 1-1 at Kensal Rise, with Adam Haywood scoring the QPR goal. The replay at Molineux was scheduled five days later. A report of that epic encounter follows:
‘This replayed tie with Wolves took place on Wednesday 31 January at Wolverhampton and proved to be the most sensational match in the whole round. Rangers played exactly the same team as they had on the previous Saturday and Mr Kingscott (Derby) again officiated as referee.
With about 5,000 present, Wolves won the toss and immediately after the kick-off made a sharp attack upon the Rangers goal, which was relieved by Hitch kicking away at a critical moment.
Back went White, Bedingfield and Haywood, Bedingfield shooting into Baddeley’s hands. A foul was given against the Wolves back for jumping on Bedingfield, but the attack ended by Hitch placing outside the post.
Rangers had got into their stride, and the ball travelled from end to end with great rapidity. Miller got down on the left and sent in a splendid shot, while Clutterbuck conceded a corner when trying to save, but it was easily cleared.
Baddeley then had another chance to distinguish himself and saved long shots from Bedingfield and Crawford. A foul was then given against Wolves just outside the 12 yards line. Rangers were pressing hard, and with Haywood through and steading to shoot, two heavy backs charged very viciously and poor Adam went down like a log. A penalty was claimed and the referee gave a free kick. Crawford put it high across the mouth of the goal, but no Rangers head was near and the ball went outside.
Bowen sent in, but this was cleared by Clutterbuck; Miller sent in, and Clutterbuck headed the ball away. A foul against Pheasant allowed Turnbull to get down on the right. He centred and Hannah put it in the net, but the whistle had been blown for offside. From the free kick Harper got in a fine run. McConnell tackled him but Harper sent it well into the net, just as the referee’s whistle blew for a foul against McConnell for the way he had attacked the player.
A free kick was awarded, which was easily cleared. Play became very exciting as half-time drew near, both teams playing for all they were worth.
The Rangers forwards then made a splendid combined run with Bedingfield passing to White, whose shot ended just over the crossbar. McConnell was badly kicked, and the game was delayed a minute or two, but he still struggled gamely on.
Immediately afterwards Harper met with an accident and had to leave the field. For the remaining three minutes the Wolves bombarded Clutterbuck’s stronghold, and the goal had several narrow shaves.
Half-time came and went with no score. The game was resumed by Wolves kicking-off, with the home team bringing the greatest pressure upon the Rangers defence, but Knowles, McConnell and Clutterbuck withstood it.
Wolves were kept at bay during the next 10 or 15 minutes, after which their energy expired, and Rangers then had a turn at attacking. Shots were rained upon the Wolves goal, but it remained intact. Rangers pressed severely, but Wolves’ sound defence was impregnable.
A foul was given against Rangers, Davis took the kick and Clutterbuck brought off another grand save. Bedingfield passed to Turnbull, who failed to take advantage of the opportunity, while White, receiving from Bedingfield, got right through the defence and a goal seemed certain. To the dismay of Rangers, however, he kicked wide.
It was then that at last a penalty was awarded to Wolves. The ball had touched McConnell’s arm when he was trying to breast it away, but the referee would not listen to any appeal, and so Pheasant, the deadly penalty shot, took the kick, Clutterbuck came to the six yards line, as Pheasant missed the ball, striking the post and curling outside.
A couple of fouls against Wolves carried the play to the other end, and Bedingfield nearly scored, Baddeley saving in fine style. Bedingfield had to leave the field through an injury to his leg, and Rangers were left with 10 men. Another foul fell to Rangers, but the ball was sent into the net without anyone touching it. Immediately afterwards the whistle sounded for the cessation of play, neither side having scored.
Extra time was ordered by the referee. Both teams had had enough, and begged the referee to allow the game to end especially as the light was getting bad. The referee coolly said that was his decision and promptly blew his whistle. Most of the team were off the ground and very unwillingly returned.
The Rangers captain tossed and won for choice of ends and the game was recommenced. Soon Bedingfield returned to the field and now Rangers went at it hammer and tongs.
Rangers were all round the Wolves stronghold, but they could not find an opening. They then exchanged ends, and again the Rangers forced the pace.
After the game had been resumed three minutes Bedingfield got possession and went right through, dashing the ball right into the corner of the net with a wonderful bit of play.
This seemed to rouse Rangers to even greater energy and dash, and Turnbull, receiving from White, got right through, but his final shot went outside the net. Wolves were desperate, but the Rangers were playing the usual Cup tie game.
Wolves were all round Clutterbuck, but a free kick was given to the Rangers for offside. The whistle then blew, with Rangers entering the second round as winners of a hard-won fight.’
QPR’s next opponents were Millwall Athletic who won the tie at Kensal Rise by two goals to nil.
(My thanks to Gordon Macey for his assistance)