FA CUP 1873-74


Winners: Oxford University

Runners-up: Royal Engineers

Holders from previous season: Wanderers


First round
25 October 18731st Surrey Rifles0-0Barnes 
8 November 1873Cambridge University1-0South Norwood 
WalkoverClapham Rovers   Amateur Athletic ClubScratched
WalkoverHigh Wycombe   Old EtoniansScratched
WalkoverMaidenhead   Civil ServiceScratched
29 October 1873Oxford University4-0Upton Park 
 Hughes, Ottoway, W.Paton, Vidal     
9 October 1873Pilgrims1-0Great Marlow 
11 October 1873Royal Engineers5-0Brondesbury 
 Addison, 4 others     
30 October 1873Sheffield 0-0Shropshire Wanderers 
18 October 1873Swifts1-0Crystal Palace 
WalkoverTrojans   FarninghamScratched
28 October 1873Uxbridge3-0Gitanos 
 Clark, Turner, 1 other     
WalkoverWanderers   SouthallScratched
11 October 1873Woodford Wells3-2Reigate Priory 
 Fraser 2, E.Beachamp   Pawle, 1 other 
8 November 1873Barnes1-01st Surrey Rifles 
17 November 1873Shropshire Wanderers0-0Sheffieldsee note 1 below
Second round
15 November 1873Clapham Rovers1-1Cambridge University 
 not known   Mitford 
22 November 1873Maidenhead1-0High Wycombe 
22 November 1873Oxford University2-0Barnes 
 not known     
26 November 1873Royal Engineers2-1Uxbridge 
 not known   not known 
22 November 1873Sheffield1-0Pilgrims 
22 November 1873Swifts2-1Woodford Wells 
 EH Bambridge, Nicolls   R.Beauchamp 
WalkoverWanderers   TrojansScratched
29 November 1873Cambridge University1-1Clapham Rovers 
 not known   Kenrick 
Second Replay
20 December 1873Clapham Rovers4-1Cambridge University 

E.Field 2, Kenrick, St. Quintin 

17 January 1874 Clapham Rovers2-1SheffieldPlayed at Peterborough
 Buchanan, Holden   Kirke-Smith 
10 December 1873Royal Engineers7-0Maidenhead 
 not known     
6 December 1873Wanderers1-1Oxford University 
 Maddison   Hughes 
31 January 1874Oxford University1-0Wanderers 
28 February 1874Oxford Unversity1-0Clapham RoversPlayed at Kennington Oval, London
28 January 1874Royal Engineers2-0SwiftsPlayed at Kennington Oval, London
 Renny-Tailyour 2     
14 March 1874Oxford University2-0Royal EngineersPlayed at Kennington Oval, London
2,000 Mackarness (10), Patton (20)     


GK: Charles Nepean

FB: Charles Mackarness

HB: Frances Birley

HB: Frederick Green

FW: Robert Benson

FW: Frederick Maddison

FW: William Rawson

FW: Cuthbert Ottaway

FW: Rev. Arthur H. Johnson

FW: Robert Vidal

FW: Frederick Patton



GK: Capt. William Merriman

FB: Maj. Francis Marindin

HB: Lieut. George Addison

HB: Lieut. Gerald Onslow

FW: Lieut. Pelham von Donop

FW: Lieut. John Blackburn

FW: Lieut. Herbert Rawson

FW: Lieut. Henry Renny-Tailyour

FW: Lieut. Henry Olivier

FW: Lieut. Charles Wood

FW: Lieut. Thomas Digby


Alfred Stair

(Upton Park)


Match Summary

Both teams had previously reached the final but been defeated by Wanderers. The Engineers had reached the final with comparative ease, scoring sixteen goals and conceding only one in the four previous rounds. Oxford's opponents in the earlier rounds had included two-time former winners Wanderers.


The final was decided by two goals from Oxford in the first twenty minutes. Their opponents had spent two weeks training for the match, an innovative concept at the time, but were repeatedly thwarted by Charles Nepean, the Oxford goalkeeper. The Engineers were said to have missed their best back, Lieut. Alfred Goodwyn, who had been posted overseas.


Oxford were able to call on their first-choice goalkeeper, Charles Nepean, who had been unable to play in the previous year's final, which Oxford lost. They also selected William Rawson, whose brother Herbert was in the Engineers' team.


The Engineers, who represented the Corps of Royal Engineers regiment of the British army, had undertaken two weeks of special training before the match, an innovative concept in an era when little importance was placed on training, but were unable to field Alfred Goodwyn, considered to be their best back, as he had been posted to India earlier in the year.


Oxford's players were not all students, as the team included Arthur H. Johnson, an ordained clergyman and Fellow of All Souls College.


Around 2,000 spectators were in attendance, a smaller crowd than had attended the previous final.


Oxford won the coin toss and elected to begin the game defending the Harleyford Road end of the stadium.


Charles Mackarness gave Oxford the lead after just ten minutes. Following an Oxford corner kick, a melee developed in front of the Engineers' goal, and the ball fell to Mackarness, who shot it over the crowd of players and past goalkeeper William Merriman. Frederick Patton doubled the lead ten minutes later after some skillful dribbling by captain Cuthbert Ottaway and Robert Vidal, who was nicknamed the "prince of dribblers" for his skill in that aspect of the game.


Oxford could have had a third goal when they managed to get the ball through the Engineers' goalposts, but the players did not appeal for the goal. At the time, as in cricket, the officials were not permitted to award a goal unless the players appealed for it, thus no goal was given. It is not recorded why the Oxford players never appealed.


The best effort for the Engineers came when Henry Renny-Tailyour's shot struck the goalpost. Late in the game the "Sappers" mounted a series of attacks on the Oxford goal but were unable to score, being repeatedly thwarted by Nepean. Oxford thus won 2–0 and secured the cup.


Post Match

As occurred each year until 1882, the winning team did not receive the trophy at the stadium on the day of the match, but later in the year at their annual dinner.


The secretary of the Royal Engineers club, in his official report, stated that Oxford had thoroughly deserved their victory. Some time after the match, the Engineers discovered that Alfred Goodwyn, their absent star player, had died in India on the day of the final of injuries sustained in a fall from a horse.



Oxford University's FA Cup winning side of 1874


Note 1: After two drawn games the outcome of the First Round tie between Sheffield and Shropshire Wanderers was decided by the toss of a coin, Sheffield going through to the next round.