Aitken Fergie Image 1 Bury 1921


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Glasgow born outside left Fergie Aitken began his football career with Petershill where he helped the club’s youth side win the Scottish Junior Cup and played for Glasgow Benburb in 1916 winning further honours when the club won The Glasgow Cup before joining Scottish League club Third Lanark in 1917. Known for his pace, he also competed in the annual Powderhall Sprint race.

After the end of the First Word War he signed for English Second Division club Bury in June 1919, making his Football League debut at Bristol City that August, and he was an ever present in Bury’s first post-war League campaign as they finished fifth in the division. He continued as a regular the following season before being signed by First Division club Blackburn Rovers for more than £2,000 in May 1921 after 5 goals in 78 appearances for The Shakers, a record amount the club had received for a player at the time.

For Blackburn he scored the only top flight goal of his career in a Boxing Day 1921 victory over local rivals Preston North End at Ewood Park, but he only made 8 appearances for Rovers before before being released at the end of the 1921-22 season. Without a club for several months, he eventually joined First Division club Cardiff City in December 1922, where he played two matches in a week for The Bluebirds the same month before losing his place. He then transferred to Birmingham in March 1923 and spent a year in their reserves without making their first eleven.

Aitken returned to Lancashire in April 1924 joining Third Division (North) club Southport and he was once again an ever present in their 1924-25 campaign as The Sandgrounders finished fourth in their division, and after a further season for Southport he was transferred to Bradford Park Avenue in June 1926 after 3 goals in 83 appearances for the Haig Avenue club. His single season in Yorkshire saw him make 11 appearances for Avenue, but was forced to retire from professional football after aggravating a thigh muscle injury when he attempted to return to action too quickly, after which he joined Lancashire Combination club Chorley in 1927, his final club before his eventual retirement.

NB the image is taken from a team photograph ahead of the match at St Andrews, Birmingham on 5th March 1921, which Birmingham went on to win 4-0 en route to their winning the Second Division Championship. Aitken sits behind team mate John Murphy.

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