Barton Harold Image 3 Sheffield United 1936

Barton Harold Image 3 Sheffield United 1936


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Leigh, Lancashire born winger Harold Barton played for Whitegate Juniors and Prescot Cables before joining Liverpool in November 1928, making his Football League debut against Blackburn Rovers in October 1929. He had made 12 appearances by the end of his debut season when Liverpool finished a disappointing twelfth. Although he was overlooked for the first dozen or so fixtures the following season, he was a regular in the side from November 1930 onwards. The 1932-33 season was his most productive as he scored 13 from 36 matches, including a hat-trick when Liverpool crushed League Champions Everton 7-4 at Anfield on 11th February 1933. The eleven goals scored in that game is easily the highest aggregate ever scored in a Merseyside derby.

In June 1934 Barton left Anfield for Sheffield United after 29 goals in 107 games for Liverpool. United had just been relegated to the Second Division and Barton played at Bramall Lane until the outbreak of the Second World War in September 1939, by when Barton had scored 47 goals in 203 matches for The Blades. After requesting a transfer in 1935, Despite his form United accepted a £2,500 offer from Tottenham Hotspur in May 1936, a move which Barton rejected.

He was in the Sheffield United side that lost 1-0 to Arsenal in the 1936 FA Cup Final at Wembley, and he remained at Bramall Lane as the club again tried to sell him in 1938 for the same price, this time to Bradford City but again Barton refused to leave. In spite of this he once again asked for a transfer in January 1939 after being the target of abuse from the fans, that season he was a member of The Blades’ team that won promotion as Second Division runners up in 1938-39.

During the Second World War Barton continued to play for The Blades as well as guesting for Bradford City, Chesterfield, Lincoln City, Rotherham United and Sheffield Wednesday. Between 1943 and 1945 he scored 19 goals for Rotherham United in the North Regional League and the War Cup competitions. His most memorable game was at Barnsley’s Oakwell Ground on 18th November 1944 when he scored three times from the penalty-spot, although Barnsley won a thriller 6-5 with a last gasp goal. The following Saturday in the return match at Millmoor he had the satisfaction of converting another penalty for what was the only goal of the game. After the War he played for non league Denaby United before his eventual retirement.

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