A Pictorial History

FOOTBALL PROGRAMMES

WEST HAM UNITED

Steve Marsh & Stuart Allen

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1956-57 Football League : Division II

Manager: Ted Fenton

FULHAM : Football League Division II

Craven Cottage

4 - 1 (Dare 2, Grice, Tucker)

18 August 1956

Att: 26,000

Gregory

Wright

Cooper

Malcolm

Brown

O'Farrell

Grice

Foan

Dare

Dick

Tucker

West Ham United

1956-57

1956-57

It was a strange start to the season as after eight games the team were unbeaten away but had not won a home game. After Barnsley were defeated 2–0 at home the trend continued with home defeats to Huddersfield Town and Grimsby Town. Fortunes changed in November: after Stoke City were beaten 1–0 at the Boleyn, the team went on a run of nine consecutive home wins, which put the side in fifth place in the table.

Grimsby Town were the visitors in the FA Cup and in an exciting game the Hammers won 5–3, with two goals from John Smith. There were 55,245 inside the ground at Everton for the next round, which saw West Ham narrowly lose 2–1 to the First Division side. Manager Ted Fenton was now putting together a good side. Ernie Gregory was reliable in goal, full-backs John Bond and Noel Cantwell were strong and rugged, and skipper and centre-half Malcolm Allison was a rock in defence. In the forward line flying winger Malcolm Musgrove was on hand to lay on chances for inside-forward Johnny Dick. There was a shock at Huddersfield in February as in snowy conditions the Hammers slumped to a 6–2 defeat. In the aftermath of this defeat only three wins were achieved in the remaining twelve games, which included a 5–3 defeat at Leicester City and a 4–1 reverse at Notts County. It was a disappointing end to the season, which gave a final placing of eighth.

56_08_18 Fulham v. WHU 56_08_20 WHU v. Blackburn Rovers 01 56_08_25 WHU v. Swansea Town 01 56_08_27 Blackburn Rovers v. WHU 56_09_01 Lincoln City v. WHU 56_09_03 WHU v. Liverpool 01 56_09_08 WHU v. Rotherham United 01 56_09_15 Port Vale v. WHU 56_09_22 WHU v. Barnsley 01 56_09_29 Sheffield United v. WHU 56_10_02 WHU v. Leyton Orient SFC1 01 56_10_06 Leyton Orient v. WHU 56_10_13 WHU v. Huddersfield Town 01 56_10_20 Bristol Rovers v. WHU 56_10_27 WHU v. Grimsby Town 01 56_11_03 Doncaster Rovers v. WHU 56_11_10 WHU v. Stoke City 01 56_11_12 WHU v. Arsenal SFC2 01 56_11_17 Middlesbrough v. WHU 56_11_24 WHU v. Leicester City 01 56_11_26 WHU v. Chelmsford City Essex Pro1 01 56_12_01 Bury v. WHU 56_12_04 Arsenal v. WHU SFC 2 replay 56_12_08 WHU v. Notts County 01 56_12_15 WHU v. Fulham 01 56_12_22 Swansea Town v. WHU 56_12_25 WHU v. Nottingham Forest 01 56_12_29 WHU v. Lincoln City 01

BLACKBURN ROVERS : Football League Division II

Upton Park

1 - 3 Tucker)

20 August 1956

Att: 19,727

Gregory

Wright

Cooper

Malcolm

Brown

O'Farrell

Grice

Foan

Dare

Dick

Tucker

SWANSEA TOWN : Football League Division II

Upton Park

1 - 2 (Tucker)

25 August 1956

Att: 17,067

Gregory

Wright

Cantwell

Malcolm

Brown

O'Farrell

Dare

Foan

Blackburn

Dick

Tucker

BLACKBURN ROVERS: Football League Division II

Ewood Park

2 - 0 (Blackburn, Dick)

27 August 1956

Att: 15,003

Gregory

Wright

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

O'Farrell

Wragg

Stroud

Blackburn

Dick

Musgrove

LINCOLN CITY : Football League Division II

Sincil Bank

2 - 0 (Stroud 2)

1 September 1956

Att: 13,131

Gregory

Wright

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

O'Farrell

Wragg

Stroud

Smith R.

Dick

Musgrove

Upton Park

1 - 1 (O'Farrell)

3 September 1956

Att: 25,671

Gregory

Wright

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

O'Farrell

Wragg

Stroud

Blackburn

Dick

Musgrove

LIVERPOOL : Football League Division II

Upton Park

1 - 1 (Dare)

8 September 1956

Att: 19,448

Gregory

Wright

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

O'Farrell

Wragg

Stroud

Dare

Dick

Musgrove

ROTHERHAM UNITED : Football League Division II

Vale Park

0 - 0

15 September 1956

Att: 17,582

Gregory

Wright

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Grice

Smith J.

Dare

Dick

Musgrove

PORT VALE : Football League Division II

JOHN SMITH makes his Hammers debut against PORT VALE at Vale Park

Upton Park

2 - 0 (Dare, Dick)

22 September 1956

Att: 19,412

Gregory

Wright

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Grice

Smith J.

Dare

Dick

Musgrove

BARNSLEY : Football League Division II

28 September 1956

GEOFF PIKE (1975-1987) Born this day Clapton, London

 

This whole-hearted endeavour and perpetual motion of this key midfield man did much to cushion the blow of losing Patsy Holland through injury. A similar type of player to Pat and his predecessor Ronnie Boyce, Geoff made a major contribution to the club's promotion back to the top flight in 1981. Making his League debut at Upton Park as a substitute for Yilmaz Orhan in a 1-2 defeat by Birmingham City on the 6th March 1976, he played much of his early soccer in Thurrock District and later with Gidea Park Rangers, well-known providers of football talent. A member of Hammers' Youth side which reached the F.A. Youth Cup Final in 1975, against Ipswich Town, Geoff had to wait a further five years for his first senior honour an F.A. Cup Winners medal in 1980 v. Arsenal at Wembley. He followed it up with a League Cup Runners-up medal and Second Division Championship memento's the next year. Transferred to Notts County in the summer of 1987 for £50,000 also given the responsibility of club captain. Later he joined near London neighbours Leyton Orient.

Bramall Lane

0 - 1

29 September 1956

Att: 23,529

Gregory

Wright

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Grice

Smith J.

Dare

Dick

Musgrove

SHEFFIELD UNITED : Football League Division II

Upton Park

4 - 1 (Dick 3, Musgrove)

2 October 1956

Att: 14,500

 

Gregory

Wright

Bond

Malcolm

Brown

Lansdowne

Grice

Smith J.

Dare

Dick

Musgrove

LEYTON ORIENT : Southern Floodlight Cup (First Round)

3 October 1956

 

NOEL CANTWELL 4th REPUBLIC of IRELAND cap

DENMARK World Cup Qualifier Dalymount Park, Dublin 2-1

Brisbane Road

2 - 1 (Musgrove, Willemse [og])

6 October 1956

Att: 24,685

 

Gregory

Wright

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Wragg

Smith J.

Dare

Dick

Musgrove

LEYTON ORIENT : Football League Division II

Upton Park

0 - 2

13 October 1956

Att: 22,643

 

Gregory

Wright

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Grice

Smith J.

Dare

Dick

Musgrove

HUDDERSFIELD TOWN : Football League Division II

Eastville

1 - 1 (Dick)

20 October 1956

Att: 24,404

 

Gregory

Bond

Cantwell

Parker

Allison

Lansdowne

Wragg

Smith J.

Blackburn

Dick

Musgrove

BRISTOL ROVERS : Football League Division II

Upton Park

0 - 1

27 October 1956

Att: 17,579

 

Gregory

Bond

Cantwell

Parker

Allison

Lansdowne

Wragg

Foan

Blackburn

Dick

Musgrove

GRIMSBY TOWN : Football League Division II

28 October 1956

ALEXANDER “Sandy” CLARK (1982-1983) Born this day Airdrie, Scotland

 

Better known as "Sandy" to his colleagues, this Scottish striker cost a princely £200,000 from Airdrieonians in 1982. Made his Hammers bow in the opening fixture of the 82-83 campaign against Nottingham Forest at Upton Park in a 1-2 defeat on the 28 August 1982. A prolific scorer North of the Border, he found the transition from part-time football to First Division standard somewhat difficult to make. Former skipper of the Broomfield club and Scottish Footballer of the Year, he returned to his native country with Glasgow Rangers for a hefty fee and was back among the goals after a further move to Heart of Midlothian. He has also managed several clubs, including Partick Thistle, Hamilton Academical, Hearts (twice, once as caretaker), St. Johnstone and Berwick Rangers. In 1982, Clark won the Scottish PFA Players' Player of the Year award. Lately he was appointed Queen of the South’s assistant manager (2014), then moved to Kilmarnock as the club’s new management team (June 2013). By June 2014 he was assistant manager of Albion Rovers.

Belle Vue

0 - 3

3 November 1956

Att: 13,071

 

Gregory

Bond

Cantwell

Johnstone

Allison

Parker

Wragg

Smith J.

Dare

Dick

Musgrove

DONCASTER ROVERS : Football League Division II

ROBERT GORDON JOHNSTONE makes his Hammers debut against DONCASTER ROVERS at Belle Vue

Upton Park

1 - 0 (Tucker [pen])

10 November 1956

Att: 17,668

 

Gregory

Bond

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Musgrove

Smith J.

Dare

Dick

Tucker

STOKE CITY : Football League Division II

Upton Park

1 - 1 (Dick)

12 November 1956

Att: 14,000

 

Gregory

Bond

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Musgrove

Smith J.

Dick

Dare

Tucker

ARSENAL : Southern Floodlight Cup (Second Round)

Ayresome Park

1 - 3 (Tucker)

17 November 1956

Att: 31,513

 

 

Gregory

Bond

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Musgrove

Smith J.

Wragg

Dick

Tucker

MIDDLESBROUGH : Football League Division II

21 November 1956

 

BILLY NEVILLE signs from Irish side WEMBLEY ROVERS, the Hammers make a £25 donation for his services

23 November 1956

 

EDDIE LEWIS signs form PRESTON NORTH END in exchange for FRANK O’FARRELL

Upton Park

2 - 1 (Lewis, Tucker)

24 November 1956

Att: 19,789

 

Wyllie

Wright

Bond

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Musgrove

Parker

Lewis

Dick

Tucker

LEICESTER CITY : Football League Division II

ROBINSON “BOB” WYLLIE and EDDIE LEWIS both make their Hammers debut against LEICESTER CITY at Upton Park

25 November 1956

 

NOEL CANTWELL 5th REPUBLIC of IRELAND cap

WEST GERMANY World Cup Qualifier Dalymount Park, Dublin 3-0

Upton Park

3 - 1 aet (Dare 2, Bond [pen])

26 November 1956

Att: 2,000

 

Gregory

Wright

Bond

Smith J.

Nelson

Morley

Dare

Matthews

Wragg

Blackburn

Grice

CHELSFORD CITY : Essex Professional Cup (First Round)

JOHN MORLEY makes his Hammers debut against CHELMSFORD CITY

Gigg Lane

3 - 3 (Dick, Musgrove, Parker)

1 December 1956

Att: 8,757

 

Wyllie

Bond

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Musgrove

Parker

Lewis

Dick

Tucker

BURY : Football League Division II

Highbury

2 - 3 (Musgrove 2)

4 December 1956

Att: 14,156

 

Wyllie

Bond

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Musgrove

Smith R.

Lewis

Dick

Tucker

ARSENAL : Southern Floodlight Cup (Second Round)

Upton Park

2 - 1 (Dick, Smith R.)

8 December 1956

Att: 14,875

 

Wyllie

Bond

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Musgrove

Smith R.

Lewis

Dick

Tucker

NOTTS COUNTY : Football League Division II

Upton Park

2 - 1 (Bond, Musgrove)

15 December 1956

Att: 18,119

 

Wyllie

Bond

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Musgrove

Smith R.

Lewis

Dick

Tucker

FULHAM : Football League Division II

Vetch Field

1 - 3 (Lewis)

22 December 1956

Att: 12,091

 

Wyllie

Bond

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Musgrove

Smith R.

Lewis

Dick

Tucker

SWANSEA TOWN : Football League Division II

Upton Park

2 - 1 (Lewis, Musgrove)

25 December 1956

Att: 16,300

 

Wyllie

Bond

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Dare

Smith J.

Lewis

Dick

Musgrove

NOTTINGHAM FOREST : Football League Division II

City Ground

26 December 1956

 

 

CAN YOU HELP?

 

After securing a 2-1 win against Nottinghan Forest on Christmas Day, the Hammers would have high hopes for a repeat victory the following day. With overnight snowfalls up and down the country the City Ground fell victim to a postponement with 6-inches of snow covering the pitch.

 

Seeing as it was a holiday period, coupled with a late announcement the game wass called off, it is thought a programme would have been printed in advance of the fixture on Boxing Day.

 

Do you know if a programme was printed?

 

Please use the contact link above

NOTTINGHAM FOREST : Football League Division II

CONTINUE 2

SECOND-HALF

This was Fred Cooper's first League appearance, for he was a late selection in place of Cantwell who was unable to play. Fred had previously played in our First XI in the Southern Floodlight Cup, but this occasion was especially notable as he was opposed to the new Fulham skipper-Johnny Haynes. Although lacking the services of Jezzard, the Cottagers eventually got their forward-line going and from a corner Dwight netted from close in after Lowe had slipped the ball to him with a short pass in the 18th minute. The homesters held this lead till the interval, but their hopes were soon dashed to the ground after the resumption. Within a minute of the re-start Black made an error that allowed Grice's cross-centre to go inside the far post, and the Fulham custodian appeared to have a continuation of his usual unfortunate games against us when Dare followed up to push home a ball which was only partially held after Tucker had centred in the following minute. Ten minutes later Grice centred for Dare to make it 3-1 and with 16 minutes to go Tucker converted Foan's pass to put the issue beyond doubt. Meanwhile Haynes had damaged his ankle to end the game on the wing, but the West Londoners were already a well-beaten side when they sustained this further addition to a lengthy list of casualties.

Unfortunately the momentum of two days earlier was not sustained in this game against Blackburn Rovers. However, we might well have had a different tale to recount had the referee not changed his mind after awarding us a goal in the seventh minute when Tucker headed in from close range; he amended his decision after consulting a linesman, and the interval arrived after a scoreless and undulv robust first-half during which Grice sustained an ankle-knock that reduced the speed of his thrusts which had been worrying the opposing defence. Things went along in pretty much the same tempo until Douglas netted twice within a minute to put us in an unenviable position, especially as we had already sustained one misfortune a couple of minutes earlier through Foan's first-timer hitting the bar and rebounding into the prostrate 'keeper's arms. Our inside-right was again twice unfortunate in the space of a couple of minutes after these goals, but when Tucker scored from an extremely narrow angle with a quarter-of-an-hour to go we were still in with a chance. Unfortunately this revival only lasted for a brief spell, as Douglas ended a movement by crossing the ball for McLeod to divert it into the net for a decisive tally that we never looked like retrieving in the closing stages.

Blackburn Rovers:

Leyland, Tayor, Bell, Mcgrath, Kelly, Clayton, Douglas, Williamson, Briggs, Smith, McLeod

Swansea Town:

King J., Willis, Thomas, King D., Peake, Jones B., Price, Charles, Griffiths, Allchurch, Jones C.

An outstanding performance by goalkeeper Johnny King enabled Swansea Town to maintain their 100% record and gain a couple of points they could hardly claim to have deserved. True enough they made the most of their opportunities, but it was their fortune to be credited with two of three rather unsatisfying goals in a game which nevertheless pleased 17,067 spectators. Peake's pile-driver from 40 yards in the 28th minute surprised everyone (including himself) when it hit the back ot the net, and Cliff Jones' winner a quarter-of-an-hour from time was the result of a breakaway when we were hammering away at the other end. In turn, our first-half equaliser also caught the opposition unawares, for the opening was made through a sliced kick that left Tucker with an adequate gap in which to place the ball. However, it was something of an anti-climax to see goals scored in this way, while really good shots at both ends were prevented from counting through hitting the woodwork with defences completely beaten. It had earlier been an unwelcome set-back to find ourselves at a physical disadvantage less than a quarter-of-an-hour after the start, for although Foan returned after only ten minutes' absence, the kick he had received on his ankle considerably limited his ventures on the right-wing. Then a pulled muscle soon afterwards cut down Dare's dashes — and the Hammers were left with only one wing completely free from injury for the remainder of the game.

The Rovers' side showed two changes from that which won here, David Whelan playing his first game at right-half in place of McGrath (who had taken Ron Clayton's place for our first encounter), and Eckersley resuming a left-back instead of Bell. With both teams holding similar records the game was destined to be a keen duel, but contrary to general expectations we ran out very easy winners. Playing delightful soccer throughout, the Hammers were always looking like winners and although Alan Blackburn missed a couple of opportunities before he opened the scoring in the 32nd minute, we were never unduly worried. This tally came fror Musgrove's cross-pass, but almost immediately'we received a rebuff when our centre-forward was kicked in the knee and had to leave the field; he returned before the interval but played on at a reduced speed. Maintaining a style which was pleasing even to the home fans we deservedly sealed the fate of the points six minutes from time, Wragg eluding Eckersley to centre for Dick to bang the ball into the net with Leyland beaten all the way. During the spell between the successes our defence had also played a noble part. The wing-halves blotted out the inside-forwards and Gregory made a couple of fine saves from good shots that had the hallmark of "goal" written all over them.

Liverpool:

Younger, Molyneux, Moran, Saunders, Hughes, Twentyman, Jackson, Anderson, Liddell, Evans, A'Court

The Hammers got of to a great strat, being three goals up in 19 minutes. The first came in the eighth minute from Musgrove, who hit home a rebound from inside the six-yard area. Eight minutes later a glorious move brought our second tally, the ball going from Malcolm to Smith and on to Dick for the inside-left to run through and side-foot it past Groombridge. Dick then made it 3-0 after Musgrove had tackled full-back Earl, gained possession and squared it into the middle.

There was a tendency for our lads to ease off a little after this, and the O's gained sufficient confidence to reduce the arrears through ex-Hammer Jimmy Andrews, who sent in a fine angle-shot in the 35th minute. Encouraged by this success the visitors redoubled their efforts, but 23 minutes after the interval Dick completed his hat-trick, after a run that took him past three defenders before he banged it into the corner from 20 yards out—and that really finished the Orient's rally, for the last 20 minutes were filled with mostly "exhibition stuff."

Leyton Orient:

Groombridge, Earl, Willemse, Cini, Carey, McMahon, Smith, Facey, Sexton, Heckman, Andrews

There was an attendance of nearly 14,000 for this Southern Floodlight Cup Second Round game, and they saw an interesting tussle which was largely dominated by the defences until the closing minutes.

The Hammers had threatened to take the lead on far more occasions than the Gunners, and we felt that we were going to be deprived of the reward for a good evening's work. This feeling was even more pronounced when with but eight minutes to go Holton crashed home the ball with an angled shot from 15 yards, and it appeared that we would he eliminated by this single tally.

However, our side came back time and time again in the brief period left, and a couple of minutes before the end Dick ended a run through with a shot that went just inside the far post from 25 yards range. This spurred the Hammers to even greater clforls, and it was a relieved Arsenal team which heard the final whistle.

This meant that we shall have to replay to decide which club goes into the Semi-Final, and we speedily fixed the date for this—Tuesday, 4th December, at Highbury.

Double click to insert body text here ...

An attendance of 17,579 saw our First XI lose by 1-0 to Grimsby Town here in a League match. This solitary tally was netted seven minutes after the start by 20-year-old Brian Hodgson who was making his League debut for the Mariners after only five weeks in senior soccer; he seized an opportunity whilst our defence was in a tangle, and stabbed the ball home from short range to receive a joyous reception from his colleagues.

Although the visitors were naturally jubilant over this success they did not have a great deal to enthuse over for the rest of the game, for despite gaining the spoils it was in many ways a hollow victory over opposition which hardly got "into gear" from start to finish. The Hammers' side was indecisive in its movements for most of the game, and although our forwards eventually got in a few good shots the Town's 'keeper rose to the occasion to keep his charge intact.

Neither team played good football, and but for other incidents, which occurred the game would have been very drab. However, what was lacking in soccer was compensated for by the other happenings, which at times had a "fairy tale" aspect.

Almost from the kick-off we attacked the visiting goal-only to fail to finish with anything like a scoring shot. Then the inevitable happened, and the City broke away to score when Hamblett headed home a cross from the left-wing in the 33rd minute. The game continued in this fashion after the resumption, and it looked as if this tally would prove decisive. However with 18 minutes to go. Wragg was brought down in the penalty-area; after appearing to firstly award a free-kick for obstruction the referee placed the ball on the penalty-spot, and Bond slammed it in to level the scores. Then in the last of the 90 minutes, Bainbridge tumbled into one of our defenders for the referee to give another penalty; the City inside-left took this himself, and Gregory dived to his left to make a fine save and keep us in the running. That brought extra time . . . and two more penalties within four minutes of the restart! Again Wragg was brought down for the award in our favour, but this time Bond shot wide. Then at the other end Bainbridge tried to better his first effort—only to be again foiled by Gregory. Four penalties in 22 minutes—and only one successfully taken! In the circumstances it would not have been surprising had there been no further scoring, but in the 110th minute Dare found the net with a 15-yard drive and then finally sealed Chelmsford's fate with another from close in in the last seconds to make us 3-1 victors.

 

Upton Park

2 - 1 (Dare 2)

29 December 1956

Att: 16,790

 

Wyllie

Bond

Cantwell

Malcolm

Allison

Lansdowne

Dare

Smith J.

Lewis

Dick

Musgrove

LINCOLN CITY : Football League Division II

MATCH POSTPONED

Snow : rearranged for 15 April 1957

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