14 August 2008

"Neeley" Murphy

Name: John Cornelius Murphy*
Born: c.1879, Pomeroy
Died: 2 September 1935, Darlington (England)
Position: Centre-Forward

Representative Honours: Ireland: 3 Full Caps / 1 Goal (1905).

Club Career:
Teams.................... --Seasons-- Signed League FACup
Darlington St Augustine's 01/02 ......................... (Northern League)
Sheffield United......... 01/02 ......Dec-01 . 0/ 0
Queen's Park Rangers .... 03/04-05/06.. 1903 .51/11 .2/ 1 (Southern League)
Luton Town............... 06/07 ..... Aug-06 ............ (Southern League)
Aston Villa.............. 06/07-07/08 Oct-06.. 0/ 0
Shildon ................. 07/08 ..... Oct-07
Gainsborough Trinity..... 07/08 ......Nov-07..19/ 3 .3/ 2

Biography:
The first QPR player to earn Ireland international caps, "Neeley" Murphy played three games at centre-forward in the 1905 International Championship. In what was a relatively successful campaign for the Irish, he scored in a 2-2 draw with Wales as the Irish also achieved a rare draw with England. The Wales match at Cliftonville’s ground at Solitude was his only footballing appearance on Irish soil.

Fans nicknamed Murphy "Spud" and the press described him as "fast and clever... with lightning drives that spell 'danger'." In a club career that took him across England, Murphy played his only League football as a winger for Gainsborough Trinity during the 1907/08 season.

Murphy’s FA Cup appearances were noteworthy as he scored for Queen’s Park Rangers in a 1-1 draw with Fulham in the 4th qualifying round in 1903/04 only to go out 3-1 in the replay. Then with Gainsborough Trinity in 1907/08 he scored the equalising goals in the 1-1 and 2-2 draws in the second round matches against Stoke. Unfortunately Stoke won the second replay 3-1.

Aston Villa DataBase

Ireland Cap Details:
25-02-1905 England. A D 1-1 BC
18-03-1905 Scotland A L 0-4 BC
08-04-1905 Wales... H D 2-2 BC 1 Goal

Summary: 3/1. Won 0, Drew 2, Lost 1.


* Murphy’s identity was a bit of a mystery as his christian name was accepted as “Neeley”, which the English population accepted as short for Neil. Hence all records showed him as N. Murphy. This was the case until recently when relatives of the said John Cornelius were in contact with John Duffy and the matter was resolved.

By George Glass

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