Billy Garraty | Aston Villa Legend
Aston Villa Joined August 1897
Joined Leicester Fosse September 1908 for (£250)
Billy Garraty joined Aston Villa in August 1897 as an 18 year old after impressing in local football with Ashted Swifts, Highfield Villa, Lozells and Aston Shakespeare.
Aston Villa were without doubt the most successful football team in the land and certainly during the 1890’s. As Philip Gibbons pointed out in Association Football in Victorian England: “Aston Villa had twice won the League Championship, as well as the FA Cup, during the three previous seasons, with a team generally acknowledged as the finest in the land.” Prior to signing for the Villians, Aston Villa had previously won the Division One Title in 1895-1896 along with and the F.A.Cup and Division One Double – in 1896-1897.
It could be said that the loss of three key players (Johnny Campbell, Jack Reynolds & Howard Spencer) were an important factor why Villa could only manage to finish 6th in the Division One League Table, along with being eliminated early from the FA Cup (Saturday 29th January 1898) in the first round away to Derby County. Billy, who was still a teenager at the time, only played two games during that disappointing season.
The following 1898 – 1899 season saw Billy get his chance to state his case for a more regular place in the Villa first team. Aston Villa were back in form and Billy Garraty scored a very promising 6 goals in just 9 games.
On November 26th 1898 Billy was part of the legendary abandoned game between Sheffield Wednesday v Aston Villa. Billy was said to be the Football Leagues first substitute read more here.
However it was 1899 – 1900 that saw Billy Garraty get into the record books with his 27 goals in 33 games league games not only make him the countries leading goalscorer that year, but he scored more goals in the game anywhere in world football that season. See Here
In addition, his goalscoring feat of 1899 – 1900 make Billy Garraty second in the list of the most league goals scored in a single season for Aston Villa – right up to this day.
In 1903 Billy won his only full international cap v Wales more info here
Blackburn Rovers 0 v Aston Villa 3 League Division 1 – 9th April 1904 Billy was on the score sheet for Aston Villa.
1905 saw Aston Villa beat Newcastle United in the F.A. final 2-0 with Billy Garraty being awarded the Man of Match see more
Preston North End 2 Aston Villa 0 – League Div 1 – 11th Nov 1905. Billy is last in line out of the changing rooms for the villa with his trade mark moustache.
On leaving Villa he had amassed 111 goals which today makes him the 8th highest goalscorers in the club’s history.
Villa’s all time top 10 goalscorers :
244 Billy Walker
242 Harry Hampton,
186 John Devey,
170 Eric Houghton,
167 Pongo Waring,
144 Johnny Dixon,
120 Peter McParland,
111 Billy Garraty
100 Dai Astley,
100 Len Capewell.
During his time at Aston Villa Billy was widely regarded as one the great utility players of the game and without doubt had he been an out and out striker for the club he would have scored a lot more goals.
On leaving Aston Villa Billy joined Leicester Fosse but only played 6 games for them. See Leicester Fosse stats. However, Billy’s career was far from over and his 59 appearances for West Bromwich Albion yielded an impressive 22 goals.
After finishing his football career at Lincoln City see here, Billy Returned very briefly to Aston Villa as a trainer ( April – May 1913 ) and in April 1915 fell seriously ill with pneumonia.
Francis junior or Frank Garraty was also a very good footballer who played for England B team as is was in them days see here
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