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History of the Queen's Park Football Club 1867 - 1917
Chapter XXIV.—Queen's Park and International Games


As has been already explained, the first two International matches recognised as official, were played under the auspices of the Queen's Park alone. On both occasions Mr. R. Gardner, as captain, was given by the club " full and sole power to select the Scottish representatives," which he appears to have done satisfactorily. The first International, at Partick, is dealt with in a special chapter. In the second-game, played in 1873 in London, Mr. Gardner was met with a thin purse, which compelled him to call upon the services of certain Scots in London, to make up the full complement, with the seven men from Glasgow, all the club could afford to pay fares for. These were R. Gardner, J. Taylor, William Ker, J. J. Thomson, William M'Kinnon, D. Wotherspoon (Queen's Park), W. Gibb (Clydesdale, also a member of Queen's Park, who had played for the club-previously against the Wanderers), and the Anglo-Scots, James Smith (Queen's Park, half-back, who then lived in London), Rennie Tailyour (Royal Engineers), Hon. A. F. Kinnaird (Wanderers), and M. Blackburn (Royal Engineers). The three strangers upset the Queen's Park as a combination, and England won 4-2. It was many a long day ere England secured another victory—not until 1879. When the International came into the hands of the newly-formed Scottish Football Association, which was founded at the instance of the Queen's Park, immediately after the second International in March, 1873, naturally the representation became more widespread, and Anglo-Scots had then no place in the team— all were of the home brand. The Queen's Park players held pride of place in 1874, at Hamilton Crescent, with seven players—Charles Campbell, J. B. Weir, H. M'Neil, and Angus M'Kinnon being capped for the first time; J. Taylor, J. J. Thomson, and William M'Kinnon making a third appearance. R. Gardner had by this time left Queen's Park, and kept goal as a member of Clydesdale, but in this match J. J. Thomson was captain, Gardner, as captain of Queen's Park, captaining the first two games. In 1875, now that football had made vast strides since the mighty deeds of the Queen's Park on the field of battle had called attention to the game, and clubs were flocking to the standard of the Scottish Football Association, the representation of the Queen's Park in the International became reduced to five— J. Taylor (captain), J. B. Weir, William M'Kinnon, H. M'Neil, and T. C. Highet; in 1876, at Hamilton Crescent, the number came down to four—J. Taylor (captain), H. M'Neil, William M'Kinnon, and T. C. Highet; in 1877, also to a quartette - R. W. Neill, C. Campbell (captain). J. Philips and William M'Kinnon. In this match were included two men who afterwards became famous as members of the Queen's Park—namely, J. T. Richmond (Clydesdale) and John Smith (Mauchline). The International was played on Hampden Park for the first time in 1878, though that enclosure had been available now for five years, but the question of terms between the club and the Scottish Football Association could not be satisfactorily arranged. Five Queen's Park players were selected—namely, C. Campbell (captain), J. T. Richmond (now a member of Queen's Park), T. C. Highet, William M'Kinnon, and H. M'Neil. When England won the match for the second time in 1879, there were only three Queen's Park players in the team—C. Campbell (captain), William M'Kinnon, and H. M'Neil. This was William M'Kinnon's eighth consecutive, and last, International.

In the early 'eighties the Queen's Park stood at its apogee as a force in football. In 1881 none of its three elevens lost a match, while its subsequent mighty deeds in cup ties, Scottish and English, especially in the latter competition, form episodes of which any club might be proud. When it lost its grip of the Scottish Cup early in 1883, it made up its mind to try for the English Cup, and how it all but succeeded twice, is a most interesting part of its great history. Its representation in the chief International at this period was strong, but then its fighting capacity was great, and honours could not be denied the members of the team, who were all unequalled in their day and generation as footballers, and the names of some indeed are still outstanding in the history of the game. It is a debatable point whether they have ever been . surpassed in their respective positions in the field as exponents of the dribbling code. Take such men as C. Campbell, a wonderful and evergreen half-back ; George Ker, a prince among centre forwards; E. Fraser and W. Anderson, the greatest combination of right-wing players ever seen; W. Arnott, than whom no better back ever kicked a ball; J. L. Kay, a left-wing forward whose fame will never die; W. Sellar, a truly great centre, a man of invincible determination and resource, capped three times for Queen's Park, but had previously played on four occasions against England as a member of Battlefield. J. J. Gow, too, in combination with C. Campbell, made a powerful defence in the days when two half-backs had to be of superior mould to bear the burden of restraining six forwards. The men of this period worthily maintained the record left to them by the heroes of the previous decade, for the playing history of the club really dates from the opening of first Hampden Park in 1873, or, to speak more correctly, from their first "foreign" match against Wanderers in London in 1872, and the International at Hamilton Crescent in the same year. Such players could not be ignored.

In the International of 1880, R. W. Neill, C. Campbell, George Ker, and J. L. Kay found places. Archibald Rowan, then a member of Caledonian, and afterwards a shining light in the Queen's Park team, stood between the uprights in this game. In 1881, Andrew Watson, C. Campbell, D. Davidson, Geo. Ker, and Harry M'Neil received recognition. This was Harry's sixth and last "English" cap. He may be considered as included among the great players of the 'seventies. With such a team as the Queen's Park possessed at this time, that seven of its players are found in the International of 1882 is by no means surprising. These were A. Watson, C. Campbell, E. Fraser, W. Anderson, Geo. Ker, W. Harrower, and J. L. Kay. This match was played on Hampden Park, and resulted in a pronounced victory for the Thistle by 5-1, which was only to be expected from the weight of the Scottish team. In the following year, 1883, when for the first time the venue of the game, when played in England, was removed from the Oval to Sheffield, the Fraser-Anderson combination was the observed of all observers, and a revelation to the "Cutlers," while the work of Dr. John Smith, who, though taking part in his fifth International, played now as a member of the Queen's Park, was unsurpassed on any field, and his was the winning goal in a victory by 3-2. Andrew H. Holm made his debut, and J. L. Kay was the fifth Queen's Park representative in this match. Now enters what may be styled the Arnott period, as that player began his series of ten consecutive Internationals against England in 1884, when he now appeared as a regular player in the Queen's Park team. Though he had been a member of the club for two years, he played in cup ties and other games for his own club—Poliokshields Athletic—as a rule, occasionally helping his new love. W. Arnott, C. Campbell, W. Anderson (E. Fraser had gone to West Africa), R. M. Christie, and Dr. Smith formed the Queen's Park contribution. This was a game famous in Scottish football annals, in which Arnott, on Gathkin Park, confounded the "Big Gunn," of Notts, Campbell assisting him. M'Aulay (Dumbarton), the greatest of custodians, snatched the ball from the foot of Bromley-Davenport in the goal-mouth—a daring and clever feat. Christie, who died of wounds in May, 1918, in the Great War, made a most successful debut here, while Dr. Smith and W. Anderson confounded the opposition. It was a desperate struggle, the Scots being victorious by 1-0. In 1885, again back to the Oval, half a dozen Queen's Parkers figure in the ranks—all good men and true. C. Campbell and J. J. Gow appeared as a combination. W. Arnott, D. S. Allan, W. Anderson, and Alex. Hamilton made up the remaining Queen's Park contingent in this match. Renovated. Hampden Park housed this important fixture in 1886. In the team were four Queen's Park players—W. Arnott, C. Campbell, A. Hamilton, and Geo. Somerville. In this game England played professionals in an International against Scotland for the first time, after the latter had declined to play the match unless the English team consisted. only of amateurs, but the Scottish Association gave way on the Football Association making large concessions re the importation of Scots to English clubs. This was Campbell's tenth and last International against England—a great achievement, considering he was first capped in 1874, and was yet worthy of the highest honours after twelve years' international experience. In the series of thirteen Internationals in which Campbell took part—ten against England and three against Wales—he was only once on the losing side,. in 1879, when England won at the Oval by 5-4. Only three players from the Queen's Park—W. Arnott, J. Allan, and A. Hamilton—took part in the game played in 1887 on a mud hole at Blackburn, when the Scots won by 3-2. The team presented a terrible appearance after an hour and a half of wading in dirt on Blackburn Rovers ground, and it was a hard and ever-changing battle to the end.

In the late eighties the great professional question raged, and Scotland held out stubbornly for many years against what was then considered an evil, even after England had decided to recognise, and legislate for, the professional player in i885. Veiled professionalism was more than suspected at home, and some strange transfers of outstanding players were made from provincial to city clubs. Celtic Football Club jumped into the arena in full war ponoply, prepared to meet all comers in 1888, in which year only three Queen's Park men took part in the International at Hampden Park— W. Arnott, W. H. Berry, and J. A. Lambie. This was an unfortunate game for Scotland, who lost by 5-0. The Thistle had not been defeated since 1879— two games, those of 1885 and 1886 (both one goal each) being drawn—and Hampden Park was the scene of the disaster. Three was also the number from Queen's Park in 1889—R. Smellie, W. Arnott, and W. Berry ; and ditto in 1890—W. Arnott, W. Berry, and Tom Robertson (late Cowlairs), who afterwards bacame a famous referee, whose services were requisitioned for important games all over the three kingdoms. In the beginning of the 'nineties the Queen's Park, as a team, despite the formation of the Scottish League in that year, had many players of the first rank to uphold its fame, and command the respect of the Scottish Association administrators. In 1891 William Sellar, late Battlefield, in whose colours he had obtained International honours in 1885, 1886, 1887, and 1888, reappeared in the Internationals as a Queen's Park player, this being his fifth cap against England. An outstanding player as a centre forward, in this period he had no equal. Arnott and R. Smellie were the backs in this match, and W. Berry the fourth Queen's Park player in the team. The Scottish League in this season would not allow its players to take part in the trial matches, not wishing to disturb its fixture list, and only Heart of Midlothian and Vale of Leven, of the League clubs, supported the Association. The League also that season refused to permit its players to compete for the Charity Cup, and ran a charity competition of its own.

In this game goal nets were first used in an International. They were first erected in Scotland at Celtic Park, 1st January, 1892, in a game between Celtic and Dumbarton. In 1892, Ibrox Park housed the International, in which were W. Arnott, Donald Sillars, W. Sellar, and T. Waddell. England had a pronounced victory by 4-1, and in the following year the Rose's majority at Richmond was more decisive still, 5-1 against Scotland being the result, notwithstanding that R. Smellie, W. Arnott, J. Hamilton, W. Sellar, and T. Waddell, a strong representation from the Queen's Park, were included in the team. In 1894 Celtic Park for the first time was selected for the International against England, when the game ended in a draw, 2-2, and the " gate " yielded what was then a record, 2,071. Professionals were played in this game for the first time by Scotland. The Queen's Park representation consisted of only three players—D. Sillars, W. Gulliland, and W. A. Lambie. Though professionalism had been recognised by the Scottish Football Association in 1893, still that body continued to employ only home players, amateurs and professionals, in the International matches. The Association in 1894 refused to employ Anglo-Scots, a majority of twenty to four being against the proposal ; but when England was on the victorious side again in 1895 on Everton's ground at Liverpool—W. Gulliland, W. A. Lambie, and T. Waddell being the Queen's Park representatives—the Association, who had not been on the winning side since 1889, was forced to reconsider its position, and on 25th March, 1896, the Scottish Football Association, in its own interests, decided to play Anglo-Scots, a trial match, which included Scots playing in England, taking place at Ibrox Park on the above date, and Anglo-Scots found places in the International of 1896, played at Celtic Park, with the happiest results, as Scotland again were supreme by 2-1, and the drawings amounted to 2,440, which would go to establish that the public interest in the match was increased by the prospect of closer competition and the uncertainty of the experiment. There was room in this team for only one Queen's Park player, W. A. Lambie, and he also was the only Queen's Park representative in 1897, when Scotland, at the Crystal Palace, again secured victory by a similar score. The Queen's Park representation with the introduction of the professionals began to dwindle, until finally it disappeared altogether. In 1898 K. Anderson was the only Queen's Park amateur in the team at Celtic Park; in 1899 A. J. Christie and R. S. M'Coll played for Scotland, both games being lost. The latter was decided at Birmingham. In 1900, 1901, and 1902 R. S. M'Coll alone upheld the honour of the Queen's Park, though in 1901 he played as an Anglo-Scottish professional from Newcastle United. In the year 1902 occurred the terrible Ibrox disaster, the International then played being declared unofficial. A second game was decided at Birmingham, which resulted in a draw—2-2. Since the last-named date, during a long series of years, the Queen's Park, though blessed with many outstanding players, had to go without representation in the International matches, these men not being considered of the same calibre as their professional brethren—a fact which is self-apparent. The Association, no doubt, performed its duty in selecting the best men for these important games, its object being to obtain victory, which would be more certain with professionals alone. England usually had a Corinthian or two in her International teams, until the break between the Football Association and the English Amateur Football Association; then professional was ranged against professional in International matches. From 1902, the last match in which R. S. M'Coll played, until 1909, when Harold Paul received his cap against England, no Queen's Park player, and consequently no amateur, has found a place in the Scottish team, nor has one appeared since, up to 1914, when the war put an end to International games of every description. In 1919 two unofficial games were played against England, in both of which A. L. Morton took part. He was also chosen for the International in 1920, played at Sheffield but had to call off owing to injuries received in a League match played shortly before against Dundee.

QUEEN'S PARK INTERNATIONAL PLAYERS


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