Competition: FA Cup 4th Round.
Athletic Tadman (2).
Attendance: 50,516. Receipts: £2,700.
Charlton Athletic: Bartram; Turner, James Oakes; Green, John Oakes, Welsh; Tadman, Robinson, Owens, Boulter, Hobbis.
Referee: Mr S.
United had defeated Third Division (North) side Chester City 3-1, with goals from Armes, Buckley and Ainsley in their Third Round tie at Elland Road and their reward was a trip to the Valley to take on Charlton Athletic. United had only won one away game in the season to date, and they only managed another away victory in the rest of the season. Charlton, like United were strong at home and eventually finished in fourth position, with United in ninth spot, but only three points worse off.
United had several fine players in their team with full-back
Bert Sproston and inside-left Eric Stephenson both
The FA Cup had never been a source of success and they
always fell at the early rounds and it was not until 1949-50 that they managed
to progress past the fifth round. And 1938 was to be no exception. Charlton
went on to reach two consecutive finals immediately after the Second World War
losing the famous “ball bursting match to 4-1 to
On this occasion United were desperately unlucky not to come
away from The Valley with at least a draw. United were rocked with two goals in
the first four minutes as Charlton hit the ground running. Many teams would
have thrown in the towel after such a shocking start but
The all-First Division tie attracted a huge crowd to the Valley. The second-half was broadcast by BBC Radio and arrangements were also made for British Movietone News to film the match. The cameramen would have had to be on their toes to catch the Charlton inside-right George Tadman early on. Less than three minutes had gone when Bert Turner, George Robinson and Tommy Owens tore United open and Tadman raced on to clip his shot over the advancing Reg Savage. Two minutes later and Tadman worked his way past Fred Mills on the right and cracked a rising shot past Savage.
United were stung into retaliatory action and threw
everything at the Londoners. Only bad luck and the brilliance of Charlton’s
goalkeeper Sam Bartram kept the rampant
Gordon Hodgson and George Ainsley
also went close as United fought tirelessly to get back into the game. Their
bravery was rewarded with fifteen minutes left when Hodgson exchanged passes
with Armes and the veteran centre-forward finally got
the ball past Bartram. That set up a great finale and
in the final minute the crowd held its breath as Armes
broke through and beat Bartram only for the ball to
crash against a post and come out. It was tough on
United, then managed by Billy Hampson, had been well placed in the First Division before the tie, won only twice in their next fourteen matches and fell away badly to finish ninth, only nine points adrift of champions Arsenal. The league was so close that season that only sixteen points separated champions Arsenal and bottom club West Bromwich Albion and only ten points from fourth placed Charlton to the bottom club.
Jack Milburn cannot stop George Tadman from scoring his and Charlton’s second goal
LUFC 1937-38: Back: Billy Hampson, Bert Sproston, Jim Makinson, Reg Savage,
Jack Milburn, Bobby Browne, Tom Holley.
Front: Sammy Armes, George Ainsley, Gordon Hodgson, Eric Stephenson, Arthur Buckley.
Charlton Players: Bert Turner, George Tadman, George Robinson, Leslie Boulter, Harold Hobbis and Goalkeeper Sam Bartram.
Charlton Athletic Captain Don Welsh with Sam Bartram at a snow-covered Valley in 1938.
FA Cup won in 1947.
Stephenson and Bert Sproston