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Bobby Langton

Blackburn Rovers FC, Preston North End FC, Bolton Wanderers FC

11 caps, 1 goal

P 11 W 8 D 1 L 2 F 32: A 11
77% successful

1946-50

disciplined: none
captaincies:
none
minutes played:
990

Profile

Full name Robert Langton
Born 8 September 1918 in Burscough, Lancashire [registered in Ormskirk, September 1918]. To William Langton and Alice (née Blinkhorn). His father was a boatman on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal.
Attended St. John's Church of England School, Burscough.
Married to Margaret Smith [registered in Ormskirk, March 1947]. Oldest children are twins Christine and William R.. Third child, Michael...?
Died 13 January 1996 in Burscough, aged 77 years 127 days [registered in West Lancashire, January 1996], following a short illness.
Height/Weight 5' 6", 10st. 10lbs [1949].

Source

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

Club Career

Club(s) Shortly after leaving school he began playing football for Burscough Victoria FC in the Southport & District Amateur League. In October 1937, he went on trial to Blackburn Rovers FC and the following month Rovers signed him as a professional for a fee of £50. During the war, he appeared for the army representive sides in India, where he was serving with the Welch Regigment, and also for Glentoran FC. After 107 league appearances, both sides of the war, and 24 goals, in August 1948, Langton was transferred to Preston North End FC in an exchange deal that was valued at over £20,000, then a world record. But after only 58 league appearances, and fourteen goals, Langton was signed by Bolton Wanderers FC in November 1949, for £22,250 (118 league appearances, 16 goals). September 1953 he returned to Ewood Park where he would end his career in league football with another 105 league appearances and another 33 goals. In May 1956 he retired from league football at the age of 37, but the following month returned to Northern Ireland to join Ards FC where he spent a season, scoring 12 goals in 41 league appearances. He was then persuaded to join a team of ex-professionals that he had assembled at non-league Wisbech Town FC. He spent three years with Wisbech including a short spell at Kidderminster Harrier FC, before ending his career as a player by signing a one month contract with Colwyn Bay FC in October 1960.
Club honours Football League Division Two winners 1938-39; Irish Cup runners-up 1944-45; FA Cup runners-up 1952-53;
Individual honours Football League (nine appearances)
Distinctions Bobby Langton Way exists in Burscough. Alongside Burscough FC's ground.

Source

Douglas Lammings' An English Football Internationalist Who's Who [1990] & Burscough FC website

England Career

Player number One of nine who became the 655th player (663) to appear for England.
Position(s) Outside-left
First match No. 227, 28 September 1946, Ireland 2 England 7, a British Championship match at Windsor Park, Donegall Avenue, Belfast, aged 28 years 20 days.
Last match No. 259, 7 October 1950, Ireland 1 England 4, a British Championship match at Windsor Park, Donegall Avenue, Belfast, aged 32 years 29 days.
Major tournaments British Championship 1946-47, 1949-50, 1950-51;
Team honours British Championship winners 1946-47, 1949-50;
Individual honours England B (five appearances)
Distinctions None

Beyond England

After finishing playing Langton did some scouting for Accrington Stanley FC and had spells as trainer/coach at Kings Lynn and Wisbech before returning home for good and becoming manager of his local Burscough FC in 1965. During his five years in charge the club won the Lancashire Combination championship and the Lancashire Junior Cup. He left the club in 1971. As with many ex-professionals, turned his hand to becoming a licensee from 1961. - An English Football Internationalists' Who's Who. Douglas Lamming (1990). Hatton Press, p.153/54.

 

Bobby Langton - Career Statistics
Squads Apps Comp.
Apps
Starts Sub on Sub off Mins. Goals Goals Av.min Comp.
Goals
Capt. Disc.
15+ 11 4 11 0 0 990 1 990 min 1 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.

 

Bobby Langton - Match Record - All Matches - By Colour of Shirt
Type P W D L F A GD FTS CS FAv AAv Pts % W/L
Home 4 4 0 0 18 4 +14 0 2 4.50 1.00 100.0 +4
Away 7 4 1 2 14 7 +7 2 3 2.00 1.00 64.3 +2
All - White 11 8 1 2 32 11 +21 2 5 2.909 1.00 77.3 +6

 

Bobby Langton - Match Record - By Type of Match
Type P W D L F A GD FTS CS FAv AAv Pts% W/L

WCP

1 1 0 0 1 0 +1 0 1 1.00 0.00 100.0 +1
WCF 0 0 0 0 0 0 =0 0 0 0.00 0.00 0.00 =0
World Cup 1 1 0 0 1 0 +1 0 1 1.00 0.00 100.0 +1
British Championship 4 4 0 0 15 3 +12 0 2 3.75 0.75 100.0 +4

Note that the 1949-50 records of the World Cup and British Championships are duplicated, and one set is therefore deducted from the grand total.

Friendly 7 4 1 2 17 8 +9 2 3 2.429 1.143 64.3 +2
All 11 8 1 2 32 11 +21 2 5 2.909 1.00 77.3 +6

 

Bobby Langton - Match Record - Tournament Matches
World Cup Preliminary Competition
Type P W D L F A GD FTS CS FAv AAv Pts% W/L
WCP/BC 1948-50 1 1 0 0 1 0 +1 0 1 1.00 0.00 100.0 +1
All 1 1 0 0 1 0 +1 0 1 1.00 0.00 100.0 +1
British Championships
Type P W D L F A GD FTS CS FAv AAv Pts% W/L
BC 1946-47 2 2 0 0 10 2 +8 0 1 5.00 1.00 100.0 +2
BC 1949-50 1 1 0 0 1 0 +1 0 1 1.00 0.00 100.0 +1
BC 1950-51 1 1 0 0 4 1 +3 0 0 4.00 1.00 100.0 +1
All 4 4 0 0 15 3 +12 0 2 3.75 0.75 100.0 +4
All Competition
Type P W D L F A GD FTS CS FAv AAv Pts% W/L
WC 1 1 0 0 1 0 +1 0 1 1.00 0.00 100.0 +1
BC 4 4 0 0 15 3 +12 0 2 3.75 0.75 100.0 +4

Note that the 1949-50 records of the World Cup and British Championships are duplicated, and one set is therefore deducted from the grand total.

All 4 4 0 0 15 3 +12 0 2 3.75 0.75 100.0 +4

 

Bobby Langton - Match History
 Club: Blackburn Rovers F.C. - 7 full caps

Coach: Walter Winterbottom - 11 full capsx

Age 28
1 227 28 September 1946 - Ireland 2 England 7, Windsor Park, Donegall Avenue, Belfast BC AW Start 11
2 228 30 September 1946 - Ireland (Éire) 0 England 1, Dalymount Park, Phibsborough, Dublin Fr AW Start 11
3 229 13 November 1946 - England 3 Wales 0, Maine Road, Manchester BC HW Start 11
4 230 27 November 1946 - England 8 Netherlands 2, Leeds Road, Huddersfield Fr HW Start 11
5 232 3 May 1947 - England 3 France 0, Arsenal Stadium, Highbury, London Fr HW Start 11
6 233 18 May 1947- Switzerland 1 England 0, Hardturm Sportplatz, Zürich Tour AL Start 11
1 b 21 May 1947 - Switzerland B 0 England B 0, Genève AD Start ?
- 234 25 May 1947- Portugal 0 England 10, Estádio Nacional, Jamor, Lisboa AW squad/reserve
Age 29
7 238 19 November 1947 - England 4 Sweden 2, Arsenal Stadium, Highbury, London Fr HW Start 11
2 b 19 May 1948 - Switzerland B 1 England B 5, Bellinzona Fr AW Start ?
 Club: Preston North End F.C. - 2 full caps  
Age 30
8 241 26 September 1948 - Denmark 0 England 0, Idrætsparken, København Fr AD Start 11
9 246 13 May 1949 - Sweden 3 England 1, Råsunda Fotbollstadion, Solna kommun, Stockholms län Tour AL Start 11
- 247 18 May 1949 - Norway 1 England 4, Ullevål Stadion, Ullevål, Oslo AW squad/reserve
3 b 18 May 1949 - Netherlands 0 1 England B 4, Olympisch Stadion, Amsterdam AW Start 11
- 248 22 May 1949 - France 1 England 3, Stade Olympique Yves-du-Manoir, Colombes, Paris AW squad/reserve
 Club: Bolton Wanderers F.C. - 2 full caps  
Age 31
10 253 15 April 1950 - Scotland 0 England 1, Hampden Park, Mount Florida, Glasgow BC/
WCP
AW Start 11
4 b 11 May 1950, Italy B 5 England B 0, Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, Milano Tour AL Start 11
- 254 14 May 1950 - Portugal 3 England 5, Estádio Nacional, Jamor, Lisboa AW squad member
5 b 17 May 1950, Netherlands 3 England B 0, Olympisch Stadion, Amsterdam AL Start 11
- 255 18 May 1950 - Belgium 1 England 4, Stade du Centenaire, Bruxelles AW squad member
- b 21 May 1950 - Luxembourg 1 England B 2, Stade Municipal, Stad Lëtzeburg AW
England's selectors announced on May 9, two squads (A and B) of 14 players each, for two separate tours. Of the 28 names, twelve did not make it to the final World Cup squad, including Bobby Langton.
Age 32
11 259 7 October 1950 - Ireland 1 England 4, Windsor Park, Donegall Avenue, Belfast BC AW Start 11

Notes

With Tom Finney and the incomparable Stan Matthews bestriding English football so majestically in the immediate post-war years, international prospects for wing men of less rarefied talents were limited. All credit, then, to Bobby Langton for collecting 11 caps and doing enough to suggest that he might have won many more.

The forthright Lancastrian, who was always ready to stand up for his employment rights during an era when clubs believed that players should be seen and not heard, was a powerful outside-left with a rasping shot. In his early days, he relished cutting in from the flank to create havoc with his direct running, though many maintained he was more effective in later years, when wily tactical acumen compensated for reduced pace.

Langton turned professional with Blackburn Rovers, having been signed for pounds 50 from the non-League Burscough Victoria as a teenager in 1937. Within a year he was in the senior side, becoming top marksman with 14 strikes in 37 games as Rovers won the second division title in 1938-9. Then came the war, much of which he spent as an infantryman in India, though some of it he was a guest with Glentoran, helping them to reach the Irish Cup Final.

With Finney preferred fleetingly to Matthews on the right flank, England gave Langton his first cap in their opening peacetime international, against Northern Ireland at Belfast in 1946, and he scored in a 7-2 victory. He retained his place for several matches, thereafter playing intermittently until winning his last honour in 1950.

By then he had changed clubs, having left Blackburn when they were relegated in 1948 and joined Preston North End in a pounds 16,000 deal. Langton scored a goal after only seven seconds of an early game for his new employers, but did not settle at Deepdale, Bolton Wanderers paying a club record pounds 20,000 for his services in 1949. He served the Trotters well, picking up an FA Cup losers' medal against Blackpool in the famous "Matthews final" of 1953, only for a dispute to result in his return to Blackburn that autumn. Though 34, he proved a sound acquisition, contributing fruitfully for three years before a brief spell in Ulster with Ards. There followed service to a succession of non-League clubs, culminating with a stint as boss of his home club Burscough Rangers in 1968.

Langton epitomised the finest traditional qualities of Lancashire football - down-to-earth realism, spiced with a certain flair. Ivan Ponting - Independent Obituary

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CG