Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Bulls met Wednesday in Cup in 1958

It's 53 years since Hereford United first met Sheffield Wednesday in the FA Cup.

In that season, 1957/58, the Bulls entered the competition in the fourth qualifying round.

A visit to Heanor Town resulted in a 5- 1 victory for Hereford United. Then in round one happy times on the Isle of Wight when the Bulls dispatched Newport 3-0.

Round Two produced the Bulls biggest win in the main rounds ever, a 6-1 hammering of Queens Park Rangers. But the luck ran out in round three as the Bulls lost 3-0 to Sheffield Wednesday at Edgar Street in front of 18,114.

This from John Williamson's excellent 50 Years at Edgar Street:

The league matches in 1957/58 were completely overshadowed by cup glory.

Heanor were beaten 5-1 and everyone hoped for a home match against League opposition. In fact a trip over the water was needed, for it turned out to be Newport (Isle of Wight).

Hereford found the journey more demanding than the match and cruised to an easy 3-0 victory. Then a home tie against Queens Park Rangers who were in the Third Divison (South).

For the match with QPR, Hereford fielded: Sewell, Tomkins, Wade, Masters, Niblett, Horton, Bowen, Clayton, Fidler, Williams, and Beech.

In front of a crowd of 10,131, the Southern League part-timers staged an amazing 6-1 win, put into prospective by the fact that the visitors lost goalkeeper Springett early in the game. The same Ron Springett was later to join Sheffield Wednesday and make 33 appearances for England.

The United goalscorers were Henry Horton, who netted two penalties, Roy Williams, Ronnie Clayton, Reggie Bowen and Cyril Beech. This match is the one of the biggest ever victories by a non-league side against League opponents.

On January 4th 1958 Edgar Street was packed. It almost seemed as though the whole population of the city of Hereford was crammed into the ground. The official attendance was 18,114, which is still a ground record, and the gross gate totalled £2,966.

The attraction was Hereford United's first ever competitive match against a First Division side. Sheffield Wednesday refused to plasy Fairy Godmother to the Southern League Cinderellas though and scored a business-like 3-0 win.

Following United's exit from the Cup freddie Jones and Ronnie Clayton were transferred to Arsenal for a combined fee of £5,000.