Bordesley Green, Birmingham born centre forward Len Capewell began his football career with Saltley Baptists in 1913 and Wolseley Motors in 1914, and had then served with The Royal Engineers during the First World War. He was playing for Wellington Town, whom he joined in 1919, when he was signed by First Division club Aston Villa in January 1922, making his Football League debut at Blackburn Rovers in April 1922, scoring in a 2-1 win. This was to be the first of exactly 100 goals for Aston Villa over the next seven years.
He was a losing FA Cup Finalist in the 1924 Wembley defeat to Newcastle United in a season where he bagged 26 goals including all 3 goals in a win at Tottenham Hotspur in March 1924, and he also notched 4 goals against Port Vale in an FA Cup tie in January 1925, with his best season coming in 1925-26 when he scored 34 goals in only 38 games. The first of those came at home to Burnley within 20 seconds of the first game of the season, a 10-0 thrashing of Burnley in which he went on to score 5 times. He also scored a hat-trick against Huddersfield Town in November 1925, and was three times Aston Villa’s top goalscorer, in 1923-24, 1925-26 and 1926-27 when he finished one ahead of Billy Walker.
He scored his 100th goal in his 157th and final match for Villa at Leicester City in April 1929, but he had lost his place to ‘Pongo’ Wareing in February 1927 and had been restricted to occasional appearances thereafter, and in February 1930 he moved to Walsall, where he played 7 times before the end of that season before retiring from the professional game, returning to Wellington Town in 1932.
NB in the photograph Capewell meets the ball ahead of West Ham United full back Billy Henderson in a match at Upton Park on Boxing Day 1923, which finished in a 1-0 victory for West Ham.