Albert Aldridge

Albert Aldridge

Albert Aldridge was born in Walsall on 13th April, 1864. A talented footballer, he played for Walsall Swifts before joining West Bromwich Albion in March, 1886.

WBA was in great form in the 1887-88 season, scoring 195 goals in 58 first-team matches. The club also enjoyed another good run in the FA Cup beating Stoke City (4-1), Old Carthusians (4-2) and Derby Junction (3-0) to reach the final against Preston North End.

A crowd of nearly 20,000 watched the final at the Kennington Oval on 24th March, 1888. The 19-year-old Billy Bassett was the star of the game and after one long dribble he passed to Jem Bayliss who scored the opening goal. Fred Dewhurst scored an equalizer early in the second-half but WBA gradually got the upper-hand. According to Philip Gibbons in Association Football in Victorian England: "Bassett tormented their defence". He eventually provided the cross for George Woodhall to score the winning-goal ten minutes from time. Aldridge, who played right-back in the final, won a cup winners' medal.

On 31st March, 1888, Aldridge won his first international cap playing for England against Ireland. The England team also included Bob Holmes, Billy Bassett, Bob Roberts, Dennis Hodgetts and Fred Dewhurst. England won the game 5-1.

After playing 15 FA Cup matches for West Bromwich Albion Aldridge joined Walsall Town in July 1888. While playing for his new club he was selected to play a second time for England against Ireland. This time the team won 6-1.

Aldridge joined Aston Villa in August 1889. However, after only playing 14 times for his new club he was forced to retire through poor health.

Albert Aldridge died aged 27, in May 1891.