The Players

Home Football Articles Book Reviews Memorabilia Notice Board Obituaries The Managers Great Matches The Players Great Teams The Characters The Statistics Contact Us Footballer Ancestors Soccer Milestones Football Trivia Football Forum Links

Search for:

Football Articles
Book Reviews
Notice Board
The Managers
Great Matches
Great Teams
The Characters
The Statistics
Contact Us
Footballer Ancestors
Soccer Milestones
Football Trivia
Football Forum

Casino Games -
US Online Casinos

Try online betting  when you're watching history in the making.  A long shot could lead to big money!

If you're interested in betting on football and other sports online you may be interested in playing at an online casino site. With so many online casinos to choose from it's best to read several online casino reviews before you play.


Interested in soccer trivia?  

Visit the newest and best soccer trivia website at 

Football and the First World War

I am currently writing a book on Football and the First World War based on the article of the same name on this website.

I am very keen to contact any football fans who have information about players who joined the army during the First World War.

Please contact me at


See reviews of Rob Cavallini's The Wanderers FC, and Around The World In 95 Games.

Jimmy McIlroy

One of Northern Ireland greatest footballers, Jimmy McIlroy achieved legendry status at Burnley when he captained them to the League Championship in 1960.

Born in Lambeg on October 25 1931, McIlroy never had any doubts about his choice of career.  He was inspired by his father Harry, who played for Distillery, and his uncle Willie, who was a professional with Portadown.

As a junior he played for the Craigavad club near Bangor and was signed by Irish League club Glentoran in early 1949 aged 17. By the time he turned 18 a few months later he had already established himself in the Glentoran first team.

On March 15th 1950, Burnley manager Frank Hill saw him play a starring role in Glentoran's 4-1 away win over Distillery.  He signed him for a fee of around 8000 and McIroy made his debut at Sunderland in  October 1950.

Within a year, and still a teenager, he won his first cap for Northern Ireland against Scotland.  Although the team lost 2-0, McIlroy's performance ensured he would become an international regular well into the next decade.

Meanwhile at Burnley his superb right-wing partnership with Billy Gray made him one of the hottest properties in English football, resulting in his selection for a Great Britain side to play the Rest of Europe in August 1955. 

McIlroy played a major role in Burnley's Championship winning side of 1959/60. His partnership with Jimmy Adamson was crucial to Burnley's success over the next three years during which they almost won the double in 1962.  A loss of form near the end of the season cost them the championship and they lost to Tottenham in the FA Cup final.

The following season, Burnley fans were devastated when McIlroy was placed on the transfer list after scoring 131 goals in 497 appearances in the claret and blue.

He then joined Stanley Matthews at Stoke City, helping the Potters to the Second Division title in 1963 and the League Cup Final the following year. In 1966, he moved on to Oldham Athletic, where he finished his playing career and had a short spell as manager.

After a short stint back at Stoke, he then managed Bolton Wanderers for 18 days before resigning in 1970 after 'unwelcome interference in team selection'.

Following retirement, he worked for a time as a sports reporter for the Lancashire Evening Telegraph.  His legendry status at Burnley is confirmed by the fact that he constantly tops the polls when fans vote for the club's greatest player.