Empire Exhibition Trophy – Part 10 – 2nd June 1938

Another Scots team went through to the semi-finals of the Empire Exhibition Trophy after the fourth first-round tie at Ibrox but on this day in 1938, most of the press reports were of the opinion that it was a lucky victory. The Glasgow Herald, for instance, stated;-

HEARTS REACH

SEMI-FINAL

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Brentford Unlucky

To Lose

English Club Weak

Near Goal

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Heart of Midlothian 1 Brentford 0

Heart of Midlothian were fortunate to defeat Brentford, the English club, at Ibrox Stadium last night and so qualify to meet Celtic in the first semi-final of the Exhibition football tournament tomorrow. Apart from a moderately good first half-hour, Hearts were outclassed.

Brentford could do every other thing except score, although time and again they were in possession of the ball practically on Waugh’s [the Hearts keeper} goal-line. Their finishing was invariably futile.

The Edinburgh club defended throughout the second half and their methods appeared very awkward. Indeed, there was not an outstanding Hearts player. Even Walker [inside-right} was short of his real form, while Waugh, Dykes [centre-half} and Miller {left-half} were nothing more than serviceable defenders.

One goal settled the tie and that came in 26 minutes, at a time when Brentford were temporarily down to ten men due to an injury to outside-right Hopkin. Hearts inside-left Black went down the wing and lobbed the ball over the Brentford keeper’s head; it looked a certain score until left-back Poyser headed the ball out but it only went as far as right-winger Briscoe and he hammered the ball home to give Hearts victory.

NB There was a future Celt in the Brentford team that night. Inside-forward Gerry McAloon had joined the London club from St Francis Juniors in 1934, spent the following five years there before moving to

Wolverhampton Wanderers in 1939. During the next few years, thanks to the war, Gerry became a bit peripatetic, having short loan deals at a number of clubs, including Celtic. He joined up at Parkhead on a permanent basis in October 1946 and stayed for two years before leaving for Belfast Celtic not long after one of the latter’s players – a certain Charles Tully – came over to Glasgow. In his two spells at Celtic Park, Gerry McAloon made 54 appearances and scored 30 goals.

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