Jimmy Crabtree

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Jimmy Crabtree
Personal information
Full name James William Crabtree
Date of birth (1871-12-23)23 December 1871
Place of birth Burnley, England
Date of death 31 March 1908(1908-03-31) (aged 36)[dubious ]
Place of death Birmingham, England
Playing position Full back / Half back
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1889–1890 Burnley 3 (1)
1890–1891 Rossendale United ? (?)
1891–1892 Heywood Central ? (?)
1892–1895 Burnley 69 (8)
1895–1904 Aston Villa 176 (6)
1904 Plymouth Argyle 4 (0)
Total 252 (15)
National team
1894–1902 England 14 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

James William "Jimmy" Crabtree (1871–1908) was a gifted English footballer of the end of the 19th century.


Crabtree began his career at Burnley, but left in 1890 and played in non-league football for two years before returning to Burnley for the 1892–93 season.[1] His performances attracted the attention of FA Cup holders, Aston Villa, in 1895. He played alongside Howard Spencer at left-half, and went on to share the captaincy of the club with him.

He won League Championship medals with Villa in 1897, 1899 and 1900, he also lifted the FA Cup in as a part of the Aston Villa team that completed the Double in 1897.

One of England's greatest players. Shone in any position. Great as a half-back, but greater, possibly, as a back, kicking cleanly and with rare precision. A keen, skilful tackler, clever at close quarters and equally reliable in the open; cool, resourceful, and brainy. Excelled in the finer points of the game, and one of the most versatile players England has boasted. For many seasons unrivalled in his position.[2]

He was capped 11 times by England whilst at Villa. Crabtree joined Plymouth Argyle in January 1904 and made four appearances in the Southern League before injury forced him to retire.[3] He then coached at several non-league clubs and later became a pub licensee in Birmingham. He died suddenly at the age of 36.


Aston Villa


  1. ^ Simpson, Ray (2007). The Clarets Chronicles. ISBN 978-0-9557468-0-2. 
  2. ^ The Villa News and Record 1 September 1906
  3. ^ "Jimmy Crabtree". Greens on Screen. Retrieved 25 April 2013. 

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