Saturday, 11 May 2013

Why Falkirk's Biggest win should have been bigger

I have often thought in my moments of weakness that I was brought up to support the wrong team, my lack of faith is enhanced by the tales that other teams can tell, such as the Raith Rovers team being sunk on the way to the Canary Islands, Third Lanark touring Argentina [twice] in the 1920s, Stanley Matthews playing for Stenhousemuir, we did none of that. But we did have our high points – This is not one!

Other teams have great, or even interesting, biggest victories, that of Falkirk seems lame, [as recently as 1984 Stirling Albion put 20 past Selkirk].

Falkirk FC [the best team in Stirlingshire, if not the world] recorded their best best ever victory [in terms of goals] against Bridge of Allan, in the Midland League, 15-0.

Now, I know, 15-0 is bloody good [better than most] but it is the nature, and the fact it could have been better that irks me.

The date was the 28th of April 1894, the place was Brockville Park, and a very strong Falkirk side was up against a very weakened Bridge of Allan side.

Falkirk – R.McNeil; T.Turnbull & T.McFarlane; H.McKinnon, J.Pray & R.Fearns; A.Stark & F.Kenny, J.McLaren, J.Tennant & A.Hamilton.
Scorers – J.Pray, R.Fearns 2, A.Hamilton 2, J.Tennant 2, J.McLaren 2, A.Stark, H.McKinnon 3, F.Kenny 2

Bridge of Allan – Anderson; Ferguson & Smart; McPherson, Silver & Carmichael; Kinross & Hoggart, Thomson, Noble & Reid.
Scorers - None

Falkirk went straight on the offensive and were three goals to the good by the ten minute mark. Constantly pressing there was only one team in it and Falkirk were eight goals to the good by the break. Falkirk were looking on form and this could be a rout, then somebody took a mental turn. With Bridge of Allan on the ropes Falkirk completely altered their formation.

In the second half Falkirk turned out as

J.Tennant; A.Hamilton & A.Stark; J.McLaren, F.Kenny & R.McNeil; T.Turnbull & H.McKinnon, J.Pray, T.McFarlane & R.Fearns.

Yes, I know, this re-organised team scored almost as many as the proper eleven had in the first [Hugh McKinnon even scored a second half hat-trick], but I will always want to know what that front five might have done to a tiring and demoralised Bridge of Allan side [according to my calculations that five score 423 goals for Falkirk between them [Kenny the weak link with only 24!!]], I know they could have done much better, but it was not to happen, it ended 15-0 and that is that.

To this day it stands as Falkirk's biggest ever win, I think it should have been bigger.