Wanderers 1-0 Royal Engineers
Saturday 16 March 1872
The historic first final took place at Kennington Oval before a crowd of 2,000. At the time football matches were played without crossbars or goalnets.
There were no free kicks or penalties and the pitch markings did not include a centre-circle or a half-way line.
Wanderers gained the first of their five victories in the competition but it was only by a single goal scored by a certain Morton Peto Betts, mysteriously playing under the pseudonym A.H.Chequer.
Wanderers had the pick of all the best players who had been at the public schools and universities, yet it was the Royal Engineers from Chatham who took the field as favourites.
In truth, Royal Engineers were unfortunate, especially in losing Lieutenant Creswell after just ten minutes when he broke his collar-bone - the first recorded accident in football.
Once Betts had opened the scoring from an acute angle after Vidal's long dribble, the Engineers did well to keep the margin down to one goal.
Wanderers, captained by FA Secretary Charles Alcock, had six future internationals in their side with Hooman of Charterhouse and Vidal, 'the prince of dribblers' from Westminster.
Wanderers: R. de C. Welch; C.W. Alcock, M.P. Betts, A.G. Bonsor, E.E. Bowen, W.P. Crake; T.C. Hooman, E. Lubbock, A.C. Thompson, R.W.S. Vidal, C.H.R. Wollaston
Royal Engineers: Capt. Marindin; capt. Merriman, Lieut. Addison; Lieut. Creswell, Lieut. Mitchell, Lieut. Renny-Tailyour; Lieut. Rich, Lieut. Goodwyn, Lieut. Muirhead, Lieut. Cotter, Lieut. Bogle.
Referee: A. Stair (Upton Park)