Team: Clutterbuck, Knowles, McConnell, Crawford, Tennant, Keech, Smith (T), Haywood, Bedingfield, Turnbull, Cowie
Rangers had successfully joined the Southern League (Division 1) for the 1899/1900 season. They had won the first league match on 2nd September 6-0 against Brighton United.
However, the result was later expunged as Brighton later resigned from the league. QPR then travelled to North London to face Tottenham Hotspur. The following match report appeared in ‘Athletic News’ two days later:
‘The meeting of Tottenham Hotspur and Queen’s Park Rangers evoked even more enthusiasm than had been expected. Quite 15,000 lined the ground, but they were not all Hotspur supporters, for some 3,000 or 4,000 had come over from North-West London.
There was one change in the Tottenham team from that which beat Millwall, Morris taking the place of Stormont at right-half. Tottenham kicked off with the sun in their faces.
Play at the start was most exciting, first one goal and then the other being bombarded but the defence was very sound, and before the close of the first half the enthusiasm had been worked up to fever heat.
The Tottenham forwards struck me as being very well together, their combination and short passing runs being splendidly conceived. Time after time the ball was well worked up to the Rangers’ goal, only for McConnell or Knowles to rush in and clear smartly.
At the start Tottenham people expected the Hotspurs to have much the better of the play, but as the half wore on they grew very anxious. For a time the “Spurs” got ragged, and looked like going to pieces, but they pulled themselves together, and were attacking hotly at half-time.
The goalkeeping on both sides was capital, Clutterbuck, the old Small Heath man, saved some good shots, but some golden opportunities for the Hotspurs were allowed to go begging by Cameron, Copeland and Smith.
On the Rangers’ side the forwards were not so well together, and instead of the short passing game went in more for long kicking and smart following up.
Clawley had several anxious moments, but cleared with the utmost coolness. Tait and Erentz gave a fine exhibition at back. Tait seems to play better each time he goes on the field, and with the ex-Preston man at left-back and Clawley in goal the “Spurs” defence is better than it has ever been before.
McNaught had a very warm handful to deal with in Bedingfield, Turnbull, and Haywood, and was not seen quite at his best, but the clever little centre-half fed his forwards judiciously.
Morris is so good that it seems likely he will find a regular place in the team. Like his fellow half and countryman, Jones, he plays a forcible, vigorous game, and no forward gets a clear run when Morris is after him.
The breaking up tactics of the Tottenham halves doubtless had a lot to do with the somewhat in-different combination shown by the Rangers’ front rank.
At half Queen’s Park were well served, Keech, Tennant, and Crawford all showing determination in dealing with the “Spurs” front rank.
Knowles, their right-back, hurt his knee in the first quarter, but he stuck gamely to his task and played a great game. Why Woolwich Arsenal allowed McConnell to go is difficult to understand. He was certainly one of the best backs Woolwich ever had, and on Saturday he kicked and tackled admirably.
The one goal of the match came in the last quarter of an hour. Kirwan ran down the left wing, and sent the ball across to Copeland, who might have chanced a shot. Smith, however, was in a better position, so Copeland drew the goalkeeper, and then sent the ball across to Smith, who scored.
There was a big scene of enthusiasm, and anxious spectators were soon on good terms with themselves. The “Spurs” thus won a grand match by a solitary goal.
Queen’s Park Rangers are a fine team, who will make a name for themselves in the Southern League before the close of the season.
Next Wednesday they are due at Southampton in a Southern District Combination match.’
The above team pic is from a copy of ‘The War (Illustrated) – The Golden Penny’ dated 7th April 1900. Those featured are as follows:
Back row: J. Campbell (Trainer), Mr Hiscox (Director), Mr G. H. Mousell (Sec.)
Third row: Mr Saxby (Director), Knowles, Crawford, Hitch, Keech, McConnell, Mr Leo Hawes (Chairman)
Second row: Haywood, White, Tennant, Turnbull, Cowie
Front row: Tom Smith, Evans, Hannah