Young Sam Image 1 Linfield 1905


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A member of the highly successful Linfield side of the early part of the 20th century, Sam Young could play anywhere across the forward line, featuring at inside right and centre forward, and frequently he played outside left too. He played in the opening match at Windsor Park when Linfield played Glentoran in September 1905. In a free scoring Blues side he won title after title, only the Irish Cup eluding him prior to a move to Airdrieonians ahead of the 1908-09 season. By then he was four times an Irish international, the Irish FA selectors first picked Young in February 1907 for a Home Nations match against England at Goodison Park as stand-in for regular outside-left, Jack Kirwan, with Young winning four caps in the spring of 1907 and 1908, in both seasons playing against England and Scotland, although all four matches were lost. He had also represented The Irish League on three occasions, making his debut in a defeat to The Football League at Hyde Road, Manchester in October 1905, and playing in the same fixture in 1906 and 1907, in the latter game he scored his only inter-league goal in a ding-dong 6-3 defeat by the English in Sunderland.

He joined a strong Airdrieonians side who were regularly challenging the dominant Old Firm and Edinburgh clubs of the time without clinching major honours, and he enjoyed nearly five years with The Diamonds, scoring 32 goals in 131 appearances. While at Airdrie he was described as “a centre who lacks nothing in dash nor pluck” and he won a further cap for Ireland against England in February 1909, and was recalled to play against Scotland in March 1912. In February 1913, he joined Southern League Portsmouth making his debut in a defeat at Gillingham the same month, scoring 3 goals in 13 appearances before the end of the season.

Young then returned to Linfield winning further titles, they were crowned Irish League Champions in 1914 and Morgan also finally picked up that elusive Irish Cup winner’s medal with a 1-0 victory over Belfast Celtic in the 1915 Final. He also returned to the Irish League team in October 1913, winning three more representative caps in just over a year to add to his three from prior seasons. This was followed by a return to the Ireland team, where he woo his final three caps in 1914, playing in two wins over Wales, a 2-1 win in Wrexham, and England, shocked 3-0 in Middlesbrough, and scoring a last minute equaliser in a 1-1 draw with Scotland at Windsor Park to claim the British Championship title outright for the first time.

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