Mutch George Image 1 Manchester United 1935

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Description

Ferryhill, Aberdeenshire born inside forward George Mutch played in Scottish junior football with Avondale in 1928, Hawthorn in 1929 and Banks o’ Dee in 1930 before joining Scottish League Arbroath in 1930, and it was while with The Red Lichties that he came to the attention of Second Division Manchester United, who signed him in May 1934. He made his Football League debut that August against Bradford City, immediately establishing himself in the United first team, and top scoring for the club in both 1934-35 and 1935-36, when his 21 League goals in an ever present season helped fire United to the Second Division Championship. While they were relegated the following season, Mutch was soon snapped up by First Division Preston North End for £5,000 at the start of September 1937.

At Deepdale he top scored in his first season with 18 goals as Preston came 3rd in the League Championship and reached the FA Cup Final (in part courtesy of Mutch’s hat-trick in the 3rd round to knock out West Ham United), where in the first ever televised Cup Final they beat Huddersfield Town with Mutch’s late extra time penalty (after he had been fouled by Huddersfield’s Alf Young) proving the Cup winning goal at Wembley. He was also selected for Scotland, playing in a 1-0 win over England at Wembley Stadium on 9th April 1938, it would prove his only cap, Also in the Scottish team were Preston colleagues, Bill Shankly, Andrew Beattie, Tom Smith and Frank O’Donnell.

He was an ever present in the final season before the Second World War, but Mutch’s Preston career was interrupted by the War at its peak. By the time he left the club in October 1946 he had scored 32 goals in exactly 100 appearances. After a season with Bury when he scored 8 times in 21 appearances, he joined Southport as a player-trainer in October 1947, scoring twice in 16 games, before taking up his training responsibilities on a permanent basis in 1948. He then returned to Scotland as the manager of Banks O’ Dee later in 1948.

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