My subsequent career as a City investment manager took me back into the football world in 1997 when l (reluctantly) became the first/launch manager of the Singer & Friedlander Football Fund, working with Alan Hansen, he was great as I’d watched him play 300 times, no different to his on field personality. I can only say that during those few months I accumulated some of my best anecdotes, as I met some of the most diverse characters in the football industry in the course of managing that fund.
Life has taken its twists and turns in the 20+ years since then, but I retained my interest in football history and collecting throughout. My physical library (books, newspapers, match programmes and other footballana) takes nearly a room for itself, accumulated since the 1970’s. In 1986 I first discovered cigarette cards, and twice I spent an afternoon or more at Murray Cards in Hendon with Mr Martin Murray himself (I last saw him in 2014 and bless him, well into his late 80’s, he was still going strong!), buying whatever Liverpool related cigarette cards I could buy. I’d go to all sorts of fairs, programme fairs, antiques fairs, accumulating whatever gems I could. I loved cigarette cards from the start. The images… Then eBay arrived.
Over years I developed a modest expertise in cigarette and trade cards, and a great love for them. I started using eBay to trade cards as a hobby business a while before Vintage Footballers was conceived, mainly as a way to accumulate a better collection and trade out the items I didn’t want, and the eureka moment came when I started to notice that I was selling a great number of the cards to relatives of the bygone players whose cards I was selling. In May 2014, I had two cousins, unbeknownst to each other, buy the same 1900 Ogden’s card of their great great grandfather, Preston and Scotland goalkeeper Peter McBride. The penny dropped. I had a good collection. Why not make a website to allow people to buy the images?? All I can say is that it had never been done for a reason – it’s been a massive piece of work, my life’s work, but there’s no money in it! But then again, I don’t do it just for the money, it’s great fun and a great pleasure to deal with people who share similar interests to my own.
And now, five years later, I’ve launched the sister website, Vintage Cricketers – please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if any of this is of interest! Or send me a message through the Vintage Footballers Facebook page.
Anyhow, hope that was interesting, probably best make a cup of tea now… And thanks for visiting Vintage Footballers!