The Birth of Manchester United 1878-1902

Discussion in 'Manchester United: History' started by BusbyBabes, Sep 1, 2007.

  1. BusbyBabes

    BusbyBabes New Member

    Jun 30, 2007
    Up North
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    England
    A group of Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway workers (LYR) in 1878 got together to form a team called Newton Heath. They quickly became known as the 'heathens' as they were known for their hard-work ethic and no-nonsense attitude. At first the team played other departments of the LYR or other railway companies. Due to the fact that they became so dominant over the local opposition, they applied for membership in the Football league in 1890-a league that included Preston North End and Blackburn Rovers-but they failed. The team applied three more times before finally being accepted in 1892 as the league was reconstructed with Newton Heath in the First Division. Newton Heath finished bottom in its first season in the league, leaking 85 goals and gaining just 18 points. The second season saw Newton Heath relegated where they stayed for two seasons and by 1898 had to watch Manchester City take their place in the First Division.
    During the 1899/1900 season Newton Heath failed to achieve promotion and the club was lacking money. They won 20 out of the 34 games they played, lost 10, drew four and finished fourth with 44 points. In the 1900/01 season the fans preferred to stay at home as the club slumped to tenth place, having lost 16 games and gaining just 32 points. The club was so desperate for money that they faced the prospect of bankruptcy and even the clubs president William Healey wanted out and attempted to have the club wound up due to the money-almost 243 pounds-he was owed. Due to the dire straits the club was in the team captain and full-back Harry Stafford ran an amazing fundraising campaign to cover the teams expenses. This included a grand fund raising bazaar which gave rise to the famous shaggy dog story. A St Bernard with a barrel on its collar was one of the attractions. When it got loose and ran away from the show it led to a meeting between one of the team's players and a rich brewer, John Henry Davis, who later used his money to save the club and build Old Trafford. During 1901/02 the club was 2,670 pounds in debt and bankruptcy imminent. Bankruptcy would have meant the club being kicked out of the football league and the team disbanded. Then the captain Harry Stafford, at a crunch creditors meeting, came up with a plan. It involved a takeover bid by four businessmen, including John Henry Davies, which allowed them to contribute 500 pounds each for a major say in the running of the club. At the end of April 1902 the name Newton Heath was ditched. The names suggested and rejected included Manchester Central and Manchester Celtic but they decided upon the name Manchester United. As Newton Heath the club ended the season 15th with only 28 points before starting the next season as Manchester united.
     
  2. BusbyBabes

    BusbyBabes New Member

    Jun 30, 2007
    Up North
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    England
    [​IMG]

    Manchester united during the 1905-1906 season
     
  3. BusbyBabes

    BusbyBabes New Member

    Jun 30, 2007
    Up North
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    England
    I hope you do not find this overlong but I thought that although rightly Munich and the Babes get a lot of coverage (Tom has covered all bases on that subject:D) I thought I would highlight how close to extinction the Newton Heath came and united to never existing. Newton Heath is still there but the old stadium blew down in a storm just after Old Trafford opened in 1910 with a capacity of 100,000.
     

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