Blackpool born centre half George Wilson started with junior teams Willow’s Rovers and Stanley Villa in 1908 before joining Fleetwood in 1909 and Morecambe in 1911 (both then in the West Lancashire League) when Second Division Blackpool spotted him and signed him in January 1912, with his Football League debut coming the following month at Leeds City, initially playing as a forward. He was Blackpool’s top scorer in his second season at the club, with ten goals in 24 League appearances. Despite his efforts, Blackpool finished at the foot of the Second Division table, but were re-elected for the following season, of which he missed all but one game due to injury. However he lost much of his early career to World War One, making 94 appearances for the Seasiders and scoring 13 goals either side of the War before joining Sheffield Wednesday in March 1920 for £3,000.
Wednesday made him their club captain, although he couldn’t save them from relegation that season, indeed the 9 League matches he played towards the end of the season were the only ones of his career in the top flight in a total of over 450 career games. In next 5 years he made 197 appearances for The Owls scoring 5 goals, but Wednesday stayed firmly rooted in the Second Division. Despite this, he was first selected for an England squad in October 1920, being a non playing reserve against Ireland at Roker Park, and thereafter he won 12 caps for England, making his debut against Wales at Ninian Park, Cardiff in March 1921. Indeed he was on 7 occasions England captain through to May 1924, first captaining his country in October 1921 in a 1-1 draw against Ireland at Windsor Park, Belfast, all this despite spending the whole of his England career with a Second Division club. He also represented The Football League on 4 occasions.
He returned to Lancashire to join Third Division (North) Nelson in July 1925 for £2,500 and was an ever present for them in 1925-26, spending the last 5 seasons of his career with the Lancashire club, scoring 18 goals in 164 games before retiring in 1930.
In this photograph he shakes hands with Derby County’s captain Jim Moore c.1922.