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Alf Common

Sheffield United FC, Middlesbrough FC

3 appearances, 2 goals

P 3 W 2 D 1 L 0 F 6: A 3
83% successful

1904-07

disciplined: none
captaincies:
none
minutes played:
270

Profile

Full name Alfred Common
Born 25 May 1880 at 27 North Milburn Street, Millfield, Sunderland, county Durham [registered in Sunderland, June 1880].

Census Notes

According to the 1881 census, Alfred is the youngest of five children to Robert and Sarah A., living at 27 North Milburn Street in Bishop Wearmouth. His father is a ship riveter.

According to the 1891 census, Alfred now has three younger siblings, and with their parents, they all still live at 27 North Milburn Street. His father still an iron ship riveter.

According to the 1901 census, Alfred is now an apprentice riveter at the shipyard, still living with his parents, still at 27 North Milburn Street.  Alfred is one of the seven children at home.

According to the 1911 census, Alfred, now married and a professional footballer, employed by Woolwich Arsenal FC, is visiting his hometown, but staying with the Reed family at 246 High Street West in Sunderland.

Married to Ann Cook [registered in Sunderland, county Durham, September 1902]. Ann died 1945.
Died 3 April 1946 at his home at 326 Coniscliffe Road, Darlington, aged 65 years x days [registered in Darlington, county Durham, June 1946].
Height/Weight 5' 8½", 13st. 0lbs [1903].

Source

Douglas Lammings' An English Football Internationalist Who's Who [1990] & FindMyPast.com

Club Career

Club(s) Playing initially for South Hylton Juniors, he was soon playing for Jarrow FC.  After a brief stay there, in 1900 he joined Sunderland AFC. But in November 1901, after eighteen league appearances and six goals, he was transferred to Sheffield United for £325, where he completed 67 league appearances and scored 21 goals. On 25 June 1904, Common decided he wanted to play for Sunderland again, and he returned in the summer of 1904, for a record £520 fee plus Sheffield United's reserve goalkeeper, Albert Lewis.  After twenty league matches and six goals, on 14 February 1905, Common moved to Middlesbrough FC and its new stadium, Ayresome Park, for another record transfer of fee £1000 plus a match between Middlesbrough FC and Sunderland AFC the following Saturday, in which Sunderland had to pay their own expenses and Middlesbrough kept the gate receipts. It was enough to have a Football League Committee formed to inquire about it. Common made his debut on 25 February 1905 against Sheffield United and scored a penalty. Common was awarded the captaincy, but after some drunken disorderly conduct in Blackpool in September 1907, he was removed from this privilege.  Following another 168 league appearances in which he scored 58 times, he moved on to Woolwich Arsenal FC on 2 July 1910 for £250, making another 77 league appearances and scoring another 23 goals. Common was then sold for £250 to Preston North End FC on 20 December 1912 for £350. After 35 league appearances and nine goals, retired in 1914 at the age of 33.
Club honours Football League runners-up 1900-01; FA Cup winner 1901-02; Football League Division Two winners 1912-13;
Individual honours Football League (one appearance).
Distinctions First to achieve a £500 transfer fee and first to achieve a £1000 transfer fee.

Source

Douglas Lammings' An English Football Internationalist Who's Who [1990].

England Career

Player number One of seven who became the 290th players (294) to appear for England.
Position(s) Inside forward, centre-forward.
First match No. 80, 29 February 1904, Wales 2 England 2, a British Championship match at The Racecourse, Mold Road, Wrexham, aged 23 years 280 days.
Last match No. 87, 19 March 1906, Wales 0 England 1, a British Championship match at The Cardiff Football Ground, Temperance Street, Cardiff, aged 25 years 299 days.
Major tournaments British Championship 1903-04, 1905-06;
Team honours British Championship winner 1903-04, shared 1905-06;
Individual honours None
Distinctions None

Beyond England

In 1936, Alf applied to become the chief F.A. Coach of Secondary Schools in Durham, but the job went to DAve Edgar.  Other unsuccessful applicants included Dickie Downs and Jack Young. So most of the rest of Common's life was spent in the victualling trade, first as licensee of the Cleaver Hotel, in Darlington's Skinnergate, for 11 years, followed by a further 18 at the Alma Hotel (more recently known as the Beer Engine and the Brown Trout) in Cockerton, from which he retired in 1943. - An English Football Internationalists' Who's Who. Douglas Lamming (1990). Hatton Press, p.71./Darlington Northern Echo article 18 August 2007

 

Alf Common - Career Statistics
Squads Apps Comp.
Apps
Mins. Goals Goals Av.min Comp.
Goals
Capt. Disc.
6 3 3 270 3 90 min 3 none none
Due to the fact that many matches rarely stuck to exactly ninety minutes long, allowing time for injuries, errors and substitutions.  The minutes here given can only ever be a guideline and cannot therefore be accurate, only an approximation.

 

Alf Common - Match Record - All Matches - By Type of Match
Type P W D L F A GD FTS CS FAv AAv Pts % W/L
Away - British Championship 3 2 1 0 6 3 +3 0 1 2.00 1.00 83.3 +2
All 3 2 1 0 6 3 +3 0 1 2.00 1.00 83.3 +2

 

Alf Common - Match Record - Tournament Matches
British Championship Competition
Type P W D L F A GD FTS CS FAv AAv Pts% W/L
BC 1903-04 2 1 1 0 5 3 +2 0 0 2.50 1.50 75.0 +1
BC 1905-06 1 1 0 0 1 0 +1 0 1 1.00 0.00 100.0 +1
BC All 3 2 1 0 6 3 +3 0 1 2.00 1.00 83.3 +2
All Competition
Type P W D L F A GD FTS CS FAv AAv Pts% W/L
BC 3 2 1 0 6 3 +3 0 1 2.00 1.00 83.3 +2
All 3 2 1 0 6 3 +3 0 1 2.00 1.00 83.3 +2

 

Alf Common - Match History
 Club: Sheffield United F.C. - 2 full caps

Coach: F.A. International Select Committee - 3 full capsx

Age 23
1 80 29 February 1904 - Wales 2 England 2, The Racecourse, Wrexham BC AD Start ir
2 81 12 March 1904 - Ireland 1 England 3, Solitude Ground, Belfast AW Start 16, 65 if
- 82 9 April 1904 - Scotland 0 England 1, Celtic Park, Glasgow AW reserve
 Club: Middlesbrough F.C. - 1 full cap  
Age 25
- 86 17 February 1906 - Ireland 0 England 5, Solitude Ground, Belfast BC AW reserve
3 87 19 March 1906 - Wales 0 England 1, Cardiff Football Ground, Cardiff AW Start cf
Age 26
- 91 1 April 1907 - England 1 Scotland 1, St. James' Park, Newcastle-upon-Tyne BC HD reserve

Notes

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CG