Christmas Day 1954: A 1-0 win at Loftus Road over Northampton Town

Team: Brown, Woods, Ingham, Nicholas, Rutter, Angell, Fidler, Cameron, Clark, Smith, Shepherd

Attendance: 8,666

On Christmas Day 1954, the R’s took on Northampton Town at Loftus Road. The following match report appeared in the West London Observer a week later:

‘Rangers took two points from Northampton Town in a very scrappy game, at Loftus Road, on Christmas Day.

The ball was in the air for a great deal of the match and the only constructive player on the field was the Rangers’ left-half, Angell.

Defences dominated and neither side possessed an inside forward with the necessary guile and craftsmanship.

There was little to choose between either team in the opening stages. Rangers perhaps, having just a bit more of the game. But even they were inclined to waste chances in front of goal instead of having a shot.

Northampton put in some very spirited attacks, and Brown was called upon a couple of times by corner kicks, one of which he just managed to push over the bar.

Rangers’ forwards were much too individual, and Clark, a lively leader, lacked support from the inside men.

However, the defence was on form and kept the Town’s forwards well under control.

Peter Angell in particular was outstanding, covering the only weak spot, the middle.

After 28 minutes, Rangers took the lead. Clark received a through pass from Angell and after almost losing the ball, regained control and left goalie Webber helpless with a fast rising shot.

Later in this half, play began to get rugged and both teams were pulled up for petty fouls.

When the Town forwards went into attack, they looked dangerous. Angell was everywhere to break them up and get his own forwards moving.

Rangers went straight into the attack on the resumption, and Fidler fired in a terrific shot, which was well held by Webber. Town withstood this pressure and gradually eased the situation

But Clark was still having to do much of the work himself. In fact, Cameron and Smith were not showing up at all.

Northampton were still dangerous, but thanks to the Rangers’ wing-halves they were never given a chance to get in a shot.

Towards the end, the visitors began to put on the pressure, and twice they had a chance, but this was spoilt by being too hurried in front of goal. They continued to pen Rangers in their own half.

The Northampton defence was equal to the home side’s, but the game was lacking in most of the essentials, notably football.’

The Christmas Draw result was announced in the programme and the first prize went to Denise Budd of 35, Sawley Road, W12.

Rangers travelled to Northampton two days later and beat the Cobblers 3-1 with goals from Clark (2) and Angell. The coach fare was 8/3d.

Steve Russell

(Thanks to Colin Woodley for sending me the match report)