Williams Reg “Skilly” Image 1 Watford 1920

Williams Reg “Skilly” Image 1 Watford 1920


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Watford, Hertfordshire born goalkeeper Reg “Skilly” Williams had played for Watford Juniors in 1909, not connected to Watford Football Club, before joining his hometown Southern League club, and he first played for their reserve team in 1910-11 as an amateur, representing Hertfordshire, signing professional for them in May 1914, after having made his first 4 Watford first team appearances in 1913-14.

Williams won The Southern League Championship with them in 1914-15 when he was an ever present in goal. He then he served in the First World War during which he also guested for West Ham United and after which he played for Leavesden Mental Hospital where he worked as an attendant. He established himself as a legendary character in goal, renowned for courage, agility and geniality, and in any list of crowd favourites throughout the club’s history “Skilly” Williams would occupy a very high place.

When Watford joined the Football League in 1920 Williams was in goal for their inaugural League fixture at Queen’s Park Rangers in August 1920. He continued to play for The Hornets until being released in the summer of 1926 after another ever present season, and he was signed by Brighton & Hove Albion after 340 appearances for The Hornets. He played 107 times in three years for The Seagulls, being ever present in 1927-28, and aged 39 he then joined non league Watford National in 1929, subsequently playing for Watford Wanderers in 1930.

His son, also Reg, a prominent Watford player as an amateur during the Second World War, became a First Division wing‐half with Chelsea.


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