Bessbrook, County Armagh born centre forward Eddie Carroll began his footballing career with hometown junior club, Bessbrook Athletic. He first played with Newry Town before making it to senior football with Glenavon in 1921 where his “speed, dash and resource” guaranteed a continuous supply of goals and brought an international call up in February 1925 when he played in a 3-0 home defeat to Scotland at Windsor Park, Belfast, and he was reported to have attracted interest from Cardiff City and Liverpool. Described at the time as “a splendid leader, Edward Carroll holds the line well and knows where the posts are”.
In a seventeen year senior career, Carroll is reckoned to have scored over 200 goals for his seven clubs, but undoubtedly his best times were with Dundalk where he scored 113 goals in three spells (47 League, 9 FAI Cup, 41 Shield and 16 Others) and still holds many club goalscoring records. In November 1925 Carroll joined Aberdeen from Glenavon, making his Scottish League debut in a 1-0 win at Raith Rovers on 28th November. However he failed to make much of an impact on the first team, scoring his only goal on the last of his five appearances in a 1-1 draw with Raith.
He did however have much better luck in the Reserves, scoring an amazing 18 goals in a 4 game spell during the 1925-26 season and adding another six in three games at the beginning of the following campaign. Dundee United stepped in with a £500 fee at the start of September 1926 and he marked his debut with a goal in a 2-1 home defeat to Kilmarnock the same month. He managed eleven goals in the 1926-27 season, including a hat-trick against Hearts, one against Rangers in a 2-0 win and another in a 3-3 draw with Celtic in his final Scottish League game, though United were still relegated at the end of the season, Carroll scoring in total 13 goals in 25 appearances.
He then joined the stream of players in the nascent US Soccer leagues, playing for Brooklyn Wanderers in 1926-27 and for New York National, before returning to Ireland to join Dundalk in June 1927 before joining Newry Town in the close season of 1928, where he had had a loan spell in 1923-24.
Carroll, “a dashing, trustful leader, with a good shooting boot” – twice represented The Irish Free State League, scoring in a 4-3 win over The Welsh League and a 1-2 defeat by The Irish League in 1928 and 1929. He had a spell at Dolphin in 1930 and he continued to play for Dundalk on and off until 1937, also playing for Newry Town in 1929-30, Dolphin in 1934, where across his two spells he scored some 38 goals, and Drumcondra.
His older brother Frank Carroll played most notably for Manchester City from 1920 to 1925, and also played for Cliftonville, Belfast Celtic, Newry Town and Dundee United, where he played with Eddie.
NB the image is from his international debut for Ireland in February 1925.