By Dave P
November 7 2005
Bolton Wanderers are a team that are now perceived as a bit of a bogey side for us and if you look at our record against them in the Premier League that is an understandable conclusion to come to. However, the Premier League is the only competition in which ...
Bolton Wanderers are a team that are now perceived as a bit of a bogey side for us and if you look at our record against them in the Premier League that is an understandable conclusion to come to. However, the Premier League is the only competition in which they hold the upper hand and overall in all our competitive meeting we hold the edge with 38 wins to their 33 (and 15 draws).
The first season in which we played them in competitive league football was way back in 1908/09 and was our first in the football league. The home match was at White Hart Lane on 19th Sept 1908 and goals from Billy Minter and Bert Middlemiss saw us to a 2-1 victory in front of 25,000 paying punters. The return leg at Burnden Park was played in front of 24,000 supporters on 23rd January 1909 and a solitary goal from Bob Steel ensured that we completed the double over them in that first league season. In fact Bolton were the very first team that we had beaten both home and away (done the double) in the League. Not a bad feat as it turned out as Bolton were Division Two champions that season and we were Runners up and both teams gained promotion to League Division One. In our case this was at our very first attempt.
The following season was not as successful for either side and our meetings were first at White Hart Lane on 11th December 1909 in front of 20,000. Billy Minter scored our goal in a 1-1 draw. The away fixture at Burnden Park was attended by only 3,000 fans and we won the game 2-0, both goals being scored by Percy Humphreys. We finished 15th and survived whilst Bolton finished Bottom and went straight back down. It was not long before we renewed our acquaintance though as Bolton finished the following season as Runners up to West Bromwich Albion and regained promotion to the top division and then finished above us in the four seasons up until our relegation in 1914 during which time we only beat them twice. Firstly on 20th April 1912 when a Billy Minter goal gave us a 1-0 victory at White Hart Lane, and then on 10th April 1914 when over 39,000 came to the Lane to see us win 3-0. John Joyce, Jimmy Cantrell and Bert Bliss scoring on that occasion.
Historians of Tottenham and Bolton Wanderers may wish to note that John William (Tiny) Joyce scored twice for Spurs in his 113 first team appearances for us, the first of those against Bolton Wanderers. What’s so remarkable about that you may ask?. It’s hardly an impressive record is it. Well I think it was seeing as he was the Tottenham goalkeeper at the time and both his goals came from firmly struck penalties. (His other goal incidentally was against Bayern Munich in a friendly a month later.
He was not the only Joyce with a Spurs and Bolton connection. A few years earlier a certain centre forward by the name of Bill Joyce Joined Spurs from Bolton and in a two year spell at Tottenham between 1897 and 1899 scored 93 goals in 119 matches. This included four Hat-tricks, three four-timers and one five.
Another Goalkeeper that will interest Bolton historians was William Frederick Weston Hinton. Signed from Bolton Wanderers at the end of June 1924, His first appearance for our first team was against Bolton on 30th August 1924. A game we won 3-0 at White Hart Lane with a penalty from Tommy Clay and goals from Alex Lindsay and Harry Hargreaves.
One more player I would like to mention is George Samuel Hunt who any Bolton follower should also be aware of. A Center Forward signed from Chesterfield for £500 in June 1930, he had first attracted the attentions of Arsenal but chos to join Tottenham. Known as the ‘Chesterfield Tough’ he became a firm favorite at White Hart Lane as over a seven year period he scored 151 goals in 205 first team matches. One of then manager Percy Smiths better signings,he helped the team gain promotion from the Second Division in 1933 (33 goals in 41 league games) and won three full England Caps. After Jack Tresadern took over as manager he fell out of favour and moved to Highbury in October 1937, only to transfer to Bolton six months later. War then interrupted his career and he guested for a number of clubs including Liverpool, Luton and Rochdale before eventually joining Sheffield Wednesday in November 1946. Two years later he retired from playing and became the first team coach at Burnden Park, a position he held for 20 years. George Hunt died in 1996.
A famous old club Bolton and about time we repeated that feat of our first Football League season and ‘did the double’ over them again.