Halse Harold Image 2 Chelsea 1913

Halse Harold Image 2 Chelsea 1913


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Leytonstone, Essex b0rn inside forward Harold Halse started his football career playing with junior clubs Newportians and Wanstead in 1901, and Barking Town in 1902, from where he joined local Second Division club Clapton Orient in 1905, making his Football League debut at Manchester United that December and playing once more, scoring against Lincoln City a month later. But it was at Southern League Southend United, who he joined the following summer, that he really made his mark scoring 91 goals in 65 games before Manchester United paid £350 for his services in March 1908.

He scored on his debut in a win over Sheffield Wednesday and bagged 4 goals in 6 appearances on the run in as Manchester United won the League Championship. The following season he scored 4 goals in 6 FA Cup ties including the only goal in the FA Cup semi final, a win over Newcastle United at Bramall Lane, as United won the 1909 FA Cup Final 1-0 against Bristol City at The Crystal Palace. He scored 56 goals in 125 games at Old Trafford alongside Billy Meredith, winning the League Championship in 1911 when he scored 10 goals during the campaign. He was awarded his only England cap in June 1909 when he scored twice in Vienna in an 8-1 win over Austria. He also made five appearances for The Football League between October 1908 and October 1914.

He sensationally scored six goals for Manchester United in the 1911 FA Charity Shield match against Swindon Town, which United won 8-4. In July 1912 he transferred to Aston Villa for £1,200 after 56 goals in 125 appearances for The Red Devils and they finished runners up in the League and won the FA Cup in his only season at Villa Park as they beat League Champions Sunderland 1-0 in the Final at The Crystal Palace, indeed he had the best season of his career at Aston Villa scoring 28 goals in 37 appearances including all five goals in a 5-1 win over Derby County in October 1912, as Villa finished runners up in the League Championship, before he left to join Chelsea in May 1913. In his second season at Stamford Bridge he reached his third FA Cup Final but Chelsea were beaten 3-0 by Sheffield United in the so called “Khaki Cup Final played at Old Trafford, immediately before peacetime football was suspended due to the onset of the First World War.

He resumed with Chelsea after the War, helping them to finish third in the League Championship in the first peacetime season and also playing in the 1920 FA Cup semi final, which they lost to eventual winners Aston Villa at Bramall Lane, returning 25 goals in 111 games for Chelsea both sides of the conflict, before joining Third Division (South) club Charlton Athletic in July 1921, for whom he scored a further 5 goals in 21 games before retiring in 1923.


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