Leeds United F.C. History
Leeds United F.C. History : Foreword
1919-29 - The Twenties
1930-39 - The Thirties
1939-46 - The War Years
1947-49 - Post War Depression
1949-57 - The Reign of King John
1957-63 - From Charles to Revie
1961-75 - The Revie Years
1975-82 - The Downward Spiral
1982-88 - The Dark Years
1988-96 - The Wilko Years
1996-04 - The Rollercoaster Ride
2004-17 - Down Among The Deadmen
100 Greatest LUFC Players Ever
Greatest Leeds United Games
Players' Profiles
Managers' Profiles
Leeds City F.C. History
Leeds City F.C. Player and Manager Profiles
Leeds United/City Statistics
Leeds United/City Captains
Leeds United/City Friendlies and Other Games
Leeds United/City Reserves and Other Teams

Kay: Harry

1907-1908 (Leeds City Player Details)

Right Back

Born: Unsworth, Lancashire: 23-03-1883

Debut: v Glossop (h): 02-09-1907

59 11st 6lb (1908)

Kay's formative youth was spent Unsworth Parish Church in the suburbs of Manchester before joining First Division Bolton Wanderers in 1906, but was unable to make the first team and left to join Second Division Leeds City in May 1907. He made his debut in the first game of the 1907-08 season at right-back in a 2-1 home win over a struggling Glossop in front of a meagre 4,000 crowd who led at the interval by one goal to nil, before John Laverty got an equaliser and an own goal from Tustin provided the winner. He soon became a regular at Elland Road missing only seven games in his only season with the club. He was an extremely reliable and steady full-back and one would question the wisdom of City allowing him to join Southern League club Swindon Town, with City team-mates Bob Jefferson and Jack Lavery, in the summer of 1908. He became a fixture in the Swindon team, where he became known as the best Right-Back never to have been capped by England. He played his part in helping the club to reach the Semi-Finals of the F.A. Cup in 1910 and 1912 in which they disposed of several "so called" superior teams from higher Leagues. He played his first game for Swindon in the Southern League in a 1-0 defeat away to Watford on 2nd September 1908, unfortunately he was injured in a 4-2 home win over Southend United on 19th December 1908 but played fourteen League games as Swindon came second in the Southern League on forty-nine points, six behind champions Northampton. He was back again for the start of the 1909-10 season and completed thirty League appearances, five F.A. Cup ties and one Southern Charity Cup, but the F.A. Cup was where the the best action came, as they knock out Crystal Palace, Burnley, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City on their way to the semi-final, where they met Newcastle United. The match is played at White Hart Lane, and, after the first half had ended goalless, Wheatcroft was presented with a golden opportunity Unfortunately, he hit the post with an open goal in front of him. Just five minutes later, Newcastle scored twice in quick succession, and the Robins were knocked out. At the season's end, both losing semi-finalists are invited to compete for the Dubonnet Cup in Paris, and Town met Barnsley, who they beat 2-1 to bring the cup back to Swindon, to go with the players' Southern League runners' up after they had again finished second, this time five points behind Brighton & Hove Albion who topped the League on fifty-nine points, even though the Robins scored ninety-two to sixty-nine on goals for! Once more there were many pleasing results in both the League and Cups as the Robins topped the Southern League for the first time.with fifty-three points from second-placed Northampton Town in the 1910-11 season as Kay was everpresent for the thirty-eight League games. They had seemed set for the title after a game at fellow contenders Crystal Palace in early January - when, though they went two goals down in the first five minutes, they bounce back to lead 3-2 at half time and showed their metal eventually running out 5-2 winners. Meanwhile, in the cup, Town reach the quarter-final stage, when 77,952 crammed into Stamford Bridge to see Chelsea win by two goals as they inflicted a 3-1 defeat on the Robins.The championship was confirmed on 22nd April 1911, when the previous year's winner, Brighton and Hove Albion, came to the County Ground, but goals from Tout, Wheatcroft and Fleming secured a 3-0 home win. Two days later, they meet Brighton again in the Southern Charity Cup final and when they draw 0-0, the game is rearranged, meaning that the two sides meet three times in five days. The Town complete their double, with a goal from Archie Bown shortly before half-time taking the cup to Wiltshire, as Kay made four appearances in both the F.A. Cup and the Southern Charity Cup. As Southern League champions, Swindon played the Football League winners Manchester United in the Charity Shield - and they were involved in the highest scoring Shield match ever, United striker Halse scoring a double hat-trick as they won 8-4 at the neutral Stamford Bridge on 25th September 1911. It attracted an attendance of only 12,000, which reflected the interest of the game by Londoners. Swindon failed to retain their Championship of the Southern League, in 1911-12, as they slumped to fourth in a tight race for the top. It was quite a hard fought battle as the Champions, Queens Park Rangers on fifty-three, with second-placed Plymouth Argyle one off the pace on fifty-two followed closely by Northampton Town on fifty-one and Swindon three more behind in fourth place. However, they reach the cup semi-finals for the second time in three years. After disposing of Sutton Junction by 5-0 and Notts County by 2-0 in home ties in Rounds one and two, West Ham were thrashed 4-0 in a replay in Round three in a home replay after the Hammers had held them to a 1-1 at their home, and then Everton were dispatched in the quarter final, with the Town holding on for a 2-1 home win. They meet a rough Barnsley side in the semi-final at Stamford Bridge in front of 48,057. Fleming in particular was literally kicked off the pitch, but a weak referee was far too lenient. Swindon managed to draw 0-0 to take the game to a replay, but Fleming was sidelined for ten months, and missed the replay, which took place on 3rd April 1912, at Notts County's Meadow Lane, and the Town are handed a golden opportunity to take the lead, when they are awarded a penalty in the first half. With regular penalty-taker Billy Tout unavailable, Archie Bown took the kick, but it was well saved, and Barnsley went on to score in the second half, and they eventually beat the Town 1-0. Kay made thirty-three appearances in the Southern League and added seven F.A. Cup appearances and one Southern League Charity Cup. Swindon were again runers-up in the Southern League, finishing on forty-eight points, two less than Plymouth Argyle. There had been a rule change came into effect - goalkeepers were no longer allowed to handle the ball outside the goal area. Before the start of the 1912-13 season, Town went on a tour of Argentina, just six weeks after the sinking of the Titanic. They play eight games in total, winning six and drawing two - beating teams such as Estudiantes de la Plata, and select sides from Argentina and Uruguay. When they get back, despite an injury-hit campaign, the Town manage to finish second, just two points behind champions Plymouth, who accumulated fifty points, but they were eliminated in the third Round of the F.A. Cup at Sunderland at Roker Park by 2-4, as Kay played all three one.They had beaten Rochdale away by 2-0 in the first Round and 2-1 at Leeds Road against Huddersfield Town in the Second. In the Southern League Kay played twenty-eight games from a maximum of thirty-eight. The 1913-1914 season was still played in its entirety and Kay played thirty-two of the thirty-eight Southern League games which saw Swindon Champions even though their margin could not have been much smaller. Both teams earned fifty points but Swindon's goal average was 1.98 whereas Crystal Palace was 1.88. There had been another rule change at the opening of the 1913-14, this saw players enforced to stand at least ten yards from a free-kick. Maybe this was good for the Robins as they went straight to the top of the Southern League, winning their opening ten games, and a virtuoso goal from Harold Fleming knocked Manchester United out of the FA Cup. However, Swindon's form faltered with the new year, and consecutive defeats by championship challengers Reading and Crystal Palace bring them right back into it - Reading eventually fall off the pace, and Swindon go into the last game of the season level on points with Palace. The Town scraped a lucky 0-0 draw at Cardiff, keeper Len Skiller keeping them in the game - and return home to find that Palace have also drawn at Gillingham - meaning that Swindon won the Shield by the narrowest of margins. Kay's only F.A. Cup appearance was in the 1-0 win over Manchester United. Despite the start of World War One, the Southern League programme went ahead. However, compared to the previous season, Swindon struggled. The highlight is a 6-0 win over Watford in April, when Archie Bown scored all six, a feat not managed by any other Town player in a competitive first team game either before or since. Swindon eventually finish ninth in a thirty-eight game League season, well short of retaining their crown. Football was suspended at the end of the season. Kay, once again played thirty-two Southern League games and also managed two more in the Southern Charity Cup. Despite there being no Football League competitions, Harry Kay did play five games for Swindon in the 1915-1916 season, as the club played several Wartime South Western Combination and even more Friendlies. Friendly matches continued at the County Ground throughout the war, but there was one notable casualty. Freddy Wheatcroft was killed in action leading his regiment into battle in France. With many of the team robbed of their best years by the war, the final Southern League campaign of 1919-20 was a disappointment, with the Town finishing in thirteenth place in the final season of the then known Southern League Division One, which had grown to a twenty-two team League. Kay played in thirty-four of those League games as well as in the one F.A. Cup away defeat by Fulham. All the members of the Southern League Division One were invited to join the Football League, and Swindon become founder members of the Third Division in 1920-21. They start amazingly. Beating Luton 9-1 in their first league game, a result which still stands as the club's biggest ever League win. Following the new year fixtures, Swindon sat just a point behind leaders Southampton with a game in hand. With the club's record attendance having been broken three times in January, with 21,261 seeing Chelsea knock them out of the FA Cup in the Second Round. Swindon still looked like promotion candidates in early April, being only six points behind Crystal Palace. But, as luck would have it, Palace had three games in hand. Unfortunately, Swindon scored only four goals in their last eight games, winning just once, and they end up in fourth place. After forty-two games, Crystal Palace were top on fifty-nine points, five ahead of Southampton, six ahead of Queens Park Rangers and Swindon being seven adrift in fourth place. Harry Kay featured in twenty-six of those League games together with two F. A. Cup appearances as Swindon defeated Sheffield United 1-0 at home in the First Round proper, in front of 18,685 on 8th January 1921, before falling to Chelsea in the Second Round proper. His final game for Swindon Town was his fifth in the 1921-22 season of Football League Division Three (South) in a 0-4 defeat at Newport County on 15th October 1921 when it was announced he had been given a free transfer. This allowed Kay to start a tobacconist/confectionery business in Swindon. He had played most of his Swindon career in the Southern League but when Swindon were elected to the Third Division at the start of the 1920-21 season he was able to play thirty-one League games and two F.A. Cup ties in the two seasons before retiring. While with Swindon he played a further two hundred and forty- six games in the Southern League, twenty-one further F.A. Cup games, eight Southern Charity Cup games and a F.A. Charity Shield game with Manchester United at Stamford Bridge in September 1911 and a Dubonnet Cup tie with Barnsley in Paris in May 1910, a total of three hundred and ten games. One other strange fact was that throughout his career he never scored a goal for the club he was playing for!. He died 14th December 1954 in Swindon and was buried at Whitworth Road Cemetery. (Thanks to Neil Roche for confirmation of Birth and Death Details and post-football details).

AppearancesGoals
League 310
F.A. Cup 10