Jack Foster (footballer)

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Jack Foster
Personal information
Full name John Samuel Foster
Date of birth (1877-11-19)19 November 1877
Place of birth Rawmarsh, England
Date of death 5 February 1946(1946-02-05) (aged 68)
Place of death Huddersfield, England[1]
Height 5 ft 7 in (1.70 m)
Playing position Centre-forward
Youth career
Rotherham Church Institute
Thornhill United
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1901–1902 Blackpool 28 (6)
1902–1906 Rotherham Town
1906–1907 Watford 57 (29)
1907–1908 Sunderland 8 (3)
1908–1909 West Ham United 15 (9)
1909 Southampton 6 (1)
1909–1910 Huddersfield Town (25)
1910–1911 Castleford Town
Teams managed
1928 Bradford City (caretaker manager)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

John Samuel Foster (19 November 1877 – 5 February 1946)[2] was an English footballer who played as a forward for various clubs in the 1900s. After retiring as a player, he became a manager.

Playing career[edit]

Foster was born in Rawmarsh, South Yorkshire, but started his professional career as an inside-forward at Blackpool of the Football League Second Division, where, during the 1901–02 season, he scored six goals from 28 league appearances.[3] He then dropped down to the Midland League where he spent several seasons back in Yorkshire with Rotherham Town before moving to Southern League Watford in 1906.[4] At Watford, he developed a reputation as a "dashing leader of attacking football".[5]

He returned to the Football League when he joined Sunderland of the First Division in December 1907 for a fee of £800.[5] He made his first-team debut on 7 December, playing at centre-forward when he scored in a 2–0 victory at Birmingham.[6] Foster retained his place for the next six matches, scoring twice in a 5–2 victory over Woolwich Arsenal on New Year's Day, before losing his place to Angus McIntosh. His time at Roker Park coincided with a decline in his health, and his doctor advised him to move to a milder climate in the south.[5]

Foster joined West Ham United of the Southern League in May 1908, where his form returned, scoring nine goals in 15 outings,[7] including a hat-trick in a 3–1 victory over Portsmouth on 10 October 1908.[8] In March 1909, he moved again, to join Southampton in an exchange deal with Frank Costello.[5]

Foster's career at The Dell started badly as he missed some easy chances[5] and after only six matches, when he scored once, he lost his place to Bob Carter, who had also joined the club recently.[9] At the end of the season, he was on the move again to join Huddersfield Town, playing their last season in the Midland League and was their top goal scorer with 25 goals.

Foster left Huddersfield in the 1910 close season, and dropped down to non-league football with Castleford and Morley, while working as a chimney sweep, before returning to Huddersfield as assistant trainer in 1912.[2]

Managerial career[edit]

From August 1926, Foster was assistant manager at Bradford City[2] under Colin Veitch. He succeeded Veitch in January 1928 as caretaker manager for the final four months of the 1927–28 season. He finished sixth in Division Three (North), just seven points shy of promotion before handing over to Peter O'Rourke.[10]

Foster finished his football related career as a scout for Portsmouth in 1938.[2]


  1. ^ Marsh, Steve. "Jack Foster ... (1908 - 1909)". theyflysohigh.co.uk. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  2. ^ a b c d Chalk, Gary; Holley, Duncan; Bull, David (2013). All the Saints: A Complete Players' Who's Who of Southampton FC. Southampton: Hagiology Publishing. p. 69. ISBN 978-0-9926-8640-6.
  3. ^ Calley, Roy (1992). Blackpool: A Complete Record 1887–1992. Breedon Books Sport. p. 178. ISBN 978-1-873626-07-8.
  4. ^ Jones, Trefor (1996). The Watford Football Club Illustrated Who's Who. p. 88. ISBN 0-9527458-0-1.
  5. ^ a b c d e Holley, Duncan; Chalk, Gary (1992). The Alphabet of the Saints. ACL & Polar Publishing. p. 127. ISBN 0-9514862-3-3.
  6. ^ Sunderland career details
  7. ^ West Ham career details
  8. ^ West Ham 3–1 Portsmouth (Match summary)
  9. ^ Chalk, Gary; Holley, Duncan (1987). Saints – A complete record. Breedon Books. pp. 44–45. ISBN 0-907969-22-4.
  10. ^ Frost, Terry (1988). Bradford City A Complete Record 1903–1988. Breedon Books Sport. p. 67. ISBN 0-907969-38-0.


  • Joyce, Michael (2004). Football League Players' Records 1888–1939. ISBN 1-899468-67-6.