Munday Herbert Image 1 Chesterfield Town 1907

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Description

Undoubtedly inside left Herbert Munday is among the greatest figures in the history of Chesterfield Football Club. Born in Eckington, Derbyshire, he began his career in local football with Eckington White Star and Eckington Works and joined Chesterfield Town, then a non league club, in the summer of 1893 as a left winger, before moving to the inside left position at the start of his second season, by when he had quickly began to establish a name for himself, having been selected to represent the Sheffield FA against the London FA in October 1893. After three years, he had scored 35 goals in 75 Sheffield League appearances for Chesterfield and he made an effortless switch to Midland League football. Another three seasons of that brought 53 goals in 71 games. In April 1898 he was awarded a benefit, against Long Eaton Rangers.

When Chesterfield made their Football League bow in the Second Division in September 1899, Munday scored their first goal which, for a while, looked like spoiling the opening-day celebrations at Sheffield Wednesday’s new Hillsborough ground (indeed it was the first goal ever at Hillsborough although five more would follow later the same afternoon at the other end). He also scored in the first League match at Saltergate against Lincoln City. His first League season was his best for Chesterfield with 27 goals in 39 appearances but he continued to score regularly throughout Chesterfield’s time in the League, and turned down offers from almost every other League club in that time. Until reverting to half back in 1907, he was the club’s top or joint top scorer in seven of the club’s first eight Football League seasons, being club captain for many of them. Defenders often found desperate ways of stopping him: he received broken fingers when someone stamped on his hand, and was once kicked over the eye while standing. He was selected to play for The Football League against The Irish League at Belfast in 1904, and was awarded a second benefit a year later.

Described in 1907 as “a fast and dangerous forward with plenty of go and energy, an excellent shot and tricky with the ball”, in 1908 he began playing at left-half, using his skill, guile and experience to service the forwards as advancing years and regular kickings took their toll on his pace. This positional change extended Munday’s period of service into its eighteenth year, playing through two seasons of Midland League football after Chesterfield Town lost their League status in 1909, before saying farewell to the club in 1911, after a third benefit match. He later played local non league football for Eckington Red Rose. During the period between 1899 and 1909 when Chesterfield Town were a League club, he scored 126 goals in 345 appearances for The Spireites.

Munday’s son Harold signed for Chesterfield in the 1920’s, but made no impression on the first team.

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