Signed for Villa in August 1897-1898 as an 18 year old, joining undoubtably 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 was therefore a very difficult task for Billy Garraty to break into a highly successful first team, hence him only playing 2 games during his first season.
During the 1898-1899 season, Billy Garraty got his chance to state his case for a place in the Villa first team. This was due to the fact that Aston Villa had an extremely poor previous season by their very high standards, only managing 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 played only 9 games during the 1998-1899 campaign however he scored a very creditable 6 goals.