Classic Match | Weymouth 1908

1908 was a massive year for Exeter City that included significant changes off the pitch, as well as the clubs biggest victory on it… A record that still stands today!

On the 10th of March 1908, the ECFC committee had met at the Red Lion pub on Sidwell Street, where they had unanimously agreed to become a professional football club and to apply to join the Southern League.

The application was granted, and the shift from amateur status in the Plymouth and district divisions to full professional standing also coincided with the Grecians playing in the FA Cup for the first time in their history.

Drawn against south-coast rivals Weymouth, City were well fancied to win the game, but nobody from the pitch to the press box expected the one sided display that was to follow.

As the match kicked off in front of fans in the newly erected wooden grandstand, it was clear that the ‘homesters’ were well deserving of their favourites tag, opening the scoring after just five minutes with a fine strike from Andrew McGuigan.

Mc Guigan would go on to bag four goals before the break, but it was James ‘Dailsy’ Bell who lived up to his reputation as City’s main man as he orchestrated the scoring frenzy that saw City 10-0 up at half time!

Such was City’s dominance over Weymouth that the visitor’s half-backs were almost acting as back-up keepers as the shots continued to rain in from all angles on their heavily besieged goal.

Bell netted his fifth goal from close range just four minutes after the restart, and for the duration of the second half the crowd were treated to a display of ‘shooting practice’ as the fledgling professionals left their opponents dazzled by their superior strength and movement.

By the end of the match Weymouth were glad of the relatively short journey home, having conceded 14 goals with no reply, as Bell went looking for a second match ball having starred in this stunning FA Cup debut win with two hat-tricks of his own.


Final Score: 14-0

Teams:

Exeter City: Fletcher; Craig, Bulcock; Ambler, Chadwick, Wake; Parnell, Watson, McGuigan, Bell, Copestake.

Weymouth: Bell; Wilson, Mitchell; Russell, Pearce, Drake: Oliver, Runyeard, Mabb, Wood, Symes.

Man of the match: James Bell

Attendance: 5,894


Written by: Will Barrett

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