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Morton Betts

Morton Betts
Personal information
Full nameMorton Peto Betts
Playing positionFull-back / Goalkeeper

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Morton Peto Betts (b. 30 August 1847, Bloomsbury, d. 19 April 1914, Menton, France) was a leading English sportsman of the late 19th century. He was notable for scoring the first goal in an English FA Cup Final.

He was the son of Edward Betts, a civil engineering contractor, who married the sister of the railway entrepreneur Samuel Morton Peto, which is how he was given his name. He was educated at Harrow School and at Trinity College, Cambridge.

His sporting career also featured first-class cricket for Middlesex (1 match) and Kent (2 matches). Switching between football and cricket duties frequently, he is also associated with Essex. He played for Essex in 1884, before they became a first-class county, and he acted as secretary of the Essex CCC from 1887 to 1890.

Betts' most notable moment came when he scored the winning goal in the 1872 FA Cup Final for Wanderers F.C., the first ever final of the tournament. In the match, he played under the pseudonym A.H. Chequer. This was because Betts used to play for Harrow Chequers (a team associated with Harrow School). Betts' goal was a relatively simple 'tap-in', coming as a result of Robert Vidal's successful dribble through the Royal Engineers' defence.

Betts usually played football as a full-back, though his one appearance for England national team (against Scotland in 1877) was as a goalkeeper. By this time, he was with the Old Harrovians Football Club.

For twenty years, Betts was a board member of the Football Association.

He spent his final years living in France, and died aged 66, shortly before the outbreak of World War I.


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