John Albert Chapman was the sixth manager in Manchester United's history. He had previously spent 15 years as manager of Airdrieonians and took control of United on 1 November 1921 after Jack Robson stepped down due to ill health. His first season in charge finished with United bottom of the league and relegated to the Second Division, however Chapman guided them to second place to win promotion back to the top flight three years later.
On 7 October 1926, The Football Association announced that Chapman had been suspended from "taking part in football or football management" during the 1926–27 season "for improper conduct in his position as Secretary-Manager of the Manchester United Football Club". No further explanation for the suspension was ever given. By the next match, two days later against Bolton Wanderers, Lal Hilditch had taken over on a temporary basis as player-manager.