George Smith
Personal information
Date of birth 1907 or 1908
Place of birth Coledale, Australia
Height 1.82 m (6 ft 0 in)
Position(s) Forward
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1926–1930 Corrimal
1931 Gladesville-Ryde
1932 Corrimal
1933–1936 St George
1936 Granville-Clyde
1937–1938 St George
1938–1939 Metters
1940–1941 Leichhardt-Annandale
1941 Wollongong
1943 Woonona-Bulli
National team
1933–1936 Australia 6 (16)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

George Smith was an Australian professional soccer player who played as a forward.[1] He captained the Australia national soccer team in 1933. Often considered the best centre-forward in Australian soccer in the 1930s, he had an average of 2.66 goals per game for Australia and has had many goalscoring records throughout his 17-year career.

Club career

Smith played for a number of clubs in the Sydney and Wollongong areas including Corrimal,[2] where he was the NSW top goalscorer for the 1932 season with 44 goals and St George up to 1936 where he scored 25 goals in 1933 and 51 goals in 1935.[3][4] He then played for Granville and Leichhardt-Annandale.

Granville-Clyde

Before the start of the 1936 NSW football, Smith went on to sign for Granville-Clyde on 21 March 1936.[5][6]

Metters

On 17 March 1938, Smith joined Metters.[7] In May 1939, Smith refused to play with Metters after the team was relegated to the reserve grade, he said that if he was not good enough to play in the first-grade he would rather watch the games.[8] He was dropped from Metters to seek a new club to join. He received offers from two clubs Leichhardt-Annandale and Woonona-Bulli to seek his transfer.

International career

Smith began his international career with Australia as captain in an international friendly, debuting in a 4–2 win over New Zealand scoring two goals. He became the first player to score a hat-trick for Australia in a 6–4 win against New Zealand.[9] He scored seven goals in the three-match test series all against New Zealand in 1933.[10] Smith was part of New South Wales' team, where he started and scored against his captained international team Australia.[11] He returned to Australia's team with the captaincy given to Alec Cameron. He continued his outstanding goalscoring record by scoring four goals when Australia won 7–1 in July 1936 at Logan Park, Dunedin. A week later, Smith made another record by scoring five goals as he broke the record for most goals in an international match for Australia. For the first time in his national career, Smith failed to score when Australia won 4–1 over New Zealand. Smith held the record as top goalscorer for Australia for 37 years, until the record was overtaken by Attila Abonyi, scoring his 16th goal in March 1973. On 3 May 1937, Smith announced his retirement from international football.[12]

Career statistics

International

National team Year[10] Competitive Friendly Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Australia 1933 0 0 3 7 3 7
1936 0 0 3 9 3 9
Career total 0 0 6 16 6 16

References

  1. ^ Howe, Andrew (2018). Encyclopedia of Socceroos: Every national team player. Fair Play Publishing. ISBN 978-0-648-13330-8.
  2. ^ "George Smith Has a Great Record". The Daily Telegraph. Vol. 2, no. 82. New South Wales, Australia. 20 May 1932. p. 2 (The Daily Telegraph Special Football Supplement). Retrieved 24 December 2020 – via National Library of Australia.
  3. ^ Grant, Sid (1974). Jack Pollard's Soccer Records. North Sydney: Jack Pollard Pty Ltd. p. 118. ISBN 0909950741.
  4. ^ "Soccer". 2 September 1935. p. 3 – via Trove.
  5. ^ "Soccer Season Begins". Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate. No. 18, 545. New South Wales, Australia. 21 March 1936. p. 19. Retrieved 24 December 2020 – via National Library of Australia.
  6. ^ "Soccer Season Opens". 23 March 1940. p. 10 – via Trove.
  7. ^ "Changes by Soccer Selectors". The Newcastle Sun. No. 6319. New South Wales, Australia. 17 March 1938. p. 17. Retrieved 24 December 2020 – via National Library of Australia.
  8. ^ "Offers Made to George Smith". Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners' Advocate. No. 19, 536. New South Wales, Australia. 23 May 1939. p. 11. Retrieved 24 December 2020 – via National Library of Australia.
  9. ^ "Second Soccer Test". The Argus (Melbourne). No. 28, 048. Victoria, Australia. 13 July 1936. p. 15. Retrieved 4 December 2020 – via National Library of Australia.
  10. ^ a b "The Australian National Men's Football Team: Caps And Captains" (PDF). Football Federation Australia. ozfootball.net. Retrieved 23 June 2009.
  11. ^ "N.S.W. SUPREME". The Sydney Morning Herald. No. 30, 681. New South Wales, Australia. 4 May 1936. p. 13. Retrieved 11 January 2021 – via National Library of Australia.
  12. ^ "George Smith Retires". The Sydney Morning Herald. No. 30, 993. New South Wales, Australia. 4 May 1937. p. 15. Retrieved 4 December 2020 – via National Library of Australia.