25 May 2011

Fred McCurry

Name: Frederick McCurry
Born: c.1914, Belfast
Height:
Weight:
Position: Goalkeeper

Representative Honours: Ireland: 7 Amateur Caps (1935-39), 2 Schoolboy Caps (1929-30); Irish League: 2 Caps (1938); R.U.C.

Club Career:
Clubs
Seasons
Signed
Fee
League
Other
Agnes.Street.School
-
-
Youth
-
-
4th Belfast Boys’ Brigade Company
Youth
-
-
Cliftonville
33/34-??/??
1930
Amateur
-
-
R.U.C.
-
-
-
-
-
TOTALS
£-
-
-

Biography:
As a youth Fred McCurry won two Schoolboy caps against Scotland and Wales while attending Agnes Street School. He also represented the Oldpark based 47th Company of the Boys' Brigade where he gained many admirers. In 1930 he joined Cliftonville, rising through the Strollers and Olympic sides before temporarily gaining his chance in the first eleven in 1934 due to the unavailability of Alfie Gardiner, and established himself in the firstteam the following season.

Initially criticised for his nervousness, McCurry quickly earned his spurs in Irish League football, "his handling is much more confident ... his anticipation is good, full of grit ... there is no situation he will not tackle." He earned a "fully merited" Amateur cap during his first season as a regular in senior football as Ireland proved they could "do a bit more than hold their own" in defeating Scotland at Ibrox Park.

McCurry lost his place in both the Cliftonville and Amateur Ireland teams to John Lillie during the 1935/36 season but, when Lillie left for Glentoran, McCurry quickly re-claimed both spots and held on to them through to the outbreak of the Second World War. In 1938 he played twice for the Irish League in a 3-1 win over the Eire League at Dalymount Park and an 8-2 defeat by the Football League at Windsor Park.

Throughout his time with Cliftonville, McCurry served in the RUC. He played in a number representative matches for them against club sides, other police forces and military representative teams. He became secretary of the RUC Athletic Association and was a key figure in their joining the Amateur League in 1956 and in the establishment of Newforge as a base for the team.

With his own playing days behind him, McCurry kept a close eye on the Irish League. However, in 1956 he lamented that the game had "gone back a lot this past few years. Players get more coaching than ever they did, and yet the football isn't any better. I think the trouble is that the natural ball player isn't allowed to play his own game." Perhaps proving that it was always better in the good old days!

Ireland Amateur Cap Details:
17-04-1935 Scotland A W 3-2
13-02-1937 England. H W 5-1
21-04-1937 Scotland A L 0-3
19-02-1938 England. A D 1-1
13-04-1938 Scotland H W 2-1
18-02-1939 England. H L 0-1
19-04-1939 Scotland A D 1-1

Summary: 7/0. Won 3, Drew 2, Lost 2.

With thanks to Jim Murphy for supplying the phto and ISN articles on which this profile is largely based.

No comments:

Who was Northern Ireland's Greatest World Cup Player & Team? (select up to eleven players)

© NIFG 2006-2015