13 December 2006

Bill Greer

Name: William Greer
Born: Co. Londonderry*
Died:
Height: 5.08 ft
Weight: 11.00 st
Position: Centre-Forward

Representative Honours: Ireland: 3 Full Caps (1909).
Club Honours: (with Distillery) Co. Antrim Shield Runner-Up 1907/08.

Club Career:
Teams
Seasons
Signed
Fee
League
FA Cup
Other
Highland Light Infantry
-
-
-
-
-
Dunfermline
05/06
-
-
-
-
-
Clyde
06/07-07/08
Aug-1906
-
18/ 4
-
-
Govan Gas Works
07/08
Sep-1907
-
-
-
-
Distillery
07/08
Feb-1908
-
-
-
-
Dumbarton
08/09
Aug-1908
-
-
-
-
Q.P.R.
08/09-09/10
Dec-1910
-
32/ 7
2/0
-
Abercorn
-
Jul-1914
-
-
-
-
TOTALS
-
£-
-
-
-

Biography:
A terrier-like inside or centre-forward, Bill Greer played the game with "terrific zest". Born in County Londonderry he joined the Highland Light Infantry and took up football with them. Later he had a short spell with Dunfermline in Junior football before joining Clyde in the Scottish First Division. He had a successful season there in 1906/07, playing fourteen league games and scoring 4 goals. After 3 games in 1907/08 he moved on to Govan Gas Works, his works team.

In February 1908 Greer signed for Distillery until the end of the season. He scored the only goal in the semi-final of the County Antrim Shield against Cliftonville, to set up a Final appearance against Linfield. Unfortunately he did not gain a winner’s medal as Linfield were victorious 3-0. Scoring in the 3-0 defeat of Belfast Celtic on the 18th April was possibly some consolation.

After moving on to Dumbarton in the Scottish Second Division for a few months Greer was signed by Queen's Park Rangers in December 1908. He was quite a hit with his new club and his displays soon earned him International recognition. He played centre forward for Ireland in all three matches that season and was partnered at inside-right on all three occasions by another new cap Billy Lacey. He was the second QPR player to earn international recognition, following closely in the footsteps of another Irishman “Neely” Murphy.

Greer appeared just twice for Queen’s Park Rangers at the start of 1909/10 season and did not figure again in football until signing for Abercorn in the Scottish Division Two in July 1914. It can only be assumed that injury had curtailed his career as he was at the height of his career in 1908/09.

Ireland Cap Details:
13-02-1909 England. A L 0-4 BC
15-03-1909 Scotland A L 0-5 BC
20-03-1909 Wales... H L 2-3 BC

Summary: 3/0. Won 0, Drew 0, Lost 3.


Biography and additional details by George Glass. Further details by Cris Freddi.

* It has not been possible to source Greer's exact birth details. About twenty William Greers were born in (Northern) Ireland between 1874-1893 with two born in Magharafelt in 1883 and 1884 the most likely candidates. A report in the Dundee Courier on his signing for Abercorn in 1914 lists him as 26 years of age, suggesting he was born in 1887 or 1888.

3 comments:

lizz fogg said...

Has anybody any information on William Henry Greer who played for Preston North End, Lancashire 1892-1897? Known as 'Billy' Greer he was supposedly selected to play for Ireland during this time.

jcd said...

Hi Lizz,

The Bill Greer you refer to was actually born in Preston (28 February 1872) and played for North End from 1891-1898 before signing for Darwen.

It is unlikely that he would have been considered for Ireland primarily as he had no link by birth or residency, but also because until the late 1890s England (and indeed all non-Ireland) based players were not considered for selection by the Irish FA.

I hope this helps.

(Biography of the Irish Greer to be improved shortly)

tnylsy said...

Hello,
My name is Carmel greer, my father Billy Greer. Born in preston. My nan always used to tell me storys of a great grandad who played for PNE. Just wondered how you know of him?

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