Hall of Shame #32: 1901/02 Season

The 1901/02 season for Swindon Town was one of our worst ever campaigns and a new entrant to our Hall of Shame… 

In the Amatuer days in the Southern League, where Town were founder members of Southern League Division One in 1894, the 1901/02 season was woeful.

In those early times, Town were playing football wearing green bodies with white sleeves, after ditching a white shirt and black short combo in 1897. Following the club being unable to source a suitable green dye, the only positive to arise from the dreadful 1901/02 season was a change to a new strip of red shirts.

That colour change did Swindon no good whatsoever. Town finished bottom of the 16 team Southern League Division One with a pathetic return of just seven points from 30 games. This was Swindon’s worst points return in our 22 Southern League seasons between 1894/95 to 1919/20.

This seven point total over the course of a season also remains the fewest points return per game for Town in any competitive league. This amounts to 0.23 points per game using two points for a win and 0.3 points per game for three points for a win – equivalent to 14 points over a 46 game game season.

Town won only two games in 1901/02: a 2-1 win over Millwall Athletic in September and a 4-1 victory over the mighty Wellingborough in March. Three draws were secured against Brentford, Southampton and New Brompton. All the seven points were secured at the County Ground – all very indicative of early Southern League football and the difficulties of winning on your travels.

Swindon were defeated in the remaining 25 games, including thrashings away by Southampton (1-6), Kettering Town (1-10), Northampton Town (0-8), Tottenham Hotspur (1-7) and New Brompton (0-5).

With a seven point return, finishing 14 points behind 14th placed Wellingborough, Town slumped to the bottom of the division for the second season running, needing a ‘Test Match’ to retain League status again.

Surprisingly though, Town managed to avoid relegation after a disastrous season, when they beat ‘non-league’ Fulham 3-1 in a Test Match.

Swindon also finished bottom of the Western League, drawing two and losing fourteen of their sixteen games – and they decide to resign from the competition at the end of the season – never to return.

Southern League Division One:  16th of 16
Western League Division One:  9th of 9

Swindon vs Bristol Rovers match reports from 1901/02 – http://beforethetoteend.weebly.com/190102-southern-league-div-1.html

Pos Club P W D L GF GA GAv1 Pts2 Notes
1 Portsmouth 30 20 7 3 67 24 2.79 47
2 Tottenham Hotspur 30 18 6 6 61 22 2.77 42
3 Southampton 30 18 6 6 71 28 2.54 42
4 West Ham United 30 17 6 7 45 28 1.61 40
5 Reading 30 16 7 7 57 24 2.38 39
6 Millwall Athletic 30 13 6 11 46 31 1.48 32
7 Luton Town 30 11 10 9 31 36 0.86 32
8 Kettering 30 12 5 13 44 39 1.13 29
9 Bristol Rovers 30 12 5 13 43 39 1.1 29
10 New Brompton 30 10 7 13 39 38 1.03 27
11 Northampton Town 30 11 5 14 53 65 0.82 27
12 Queens Park Rangers 30 9 6 15 34 55 0.62 24
13 Watford 30 9 4 17 36 58 0.62 22
14 Wellingborough 30 9 3 18 34 72 0.47 21
15 Brentford 30 7 6 17 34 61 0.56 20 Relegation test matches
16 Swindon Town 30 2 3 25 17 92 0.18 7

Read More Tales from the STFC Hall of Shame…

Information and picture from www.swindon-town-fc.co.uk

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