An England debutant at 35 was born on this day.
An England player with an unusual career in the game was born on this day, 120 years ago. Frank Hudspeth was a Newcastle United left-back who had to wait until his mid-30s to achieve his great successes.
He won The FA Cup with Newcastle when he was 34, picked up his only England cap when he was 35 and won the League Championship, again with the Magpies, when he was 37. He was certainly a player who improved with age.
Born in Northumberland, Newcastle snapped him up from amateur club North Shields Athletic as a 19-year-old. The transfer fee was a modest £100. He had played for England in an unofficial ‘Victory’ international in 1919 and finally got his cap in a match for which he was originally third choice.
Sam Wadsworth of Huddersfield Town and Horace Cope of Notts County had to withdraw, leaving Hudspeth to take his place at left-back against Ireland in Belfast in October 1925. A 30,000 crowd at Windsor Park saw a 0-0 draw.
Of Newcastle’s popular skipper they said: “(He was) intelligent in positioning, safe in kicking and wonderfully consistent”.