Player profile

Bob Pursell

Bob Pursell

Birthdate: 18 March 1889
Birthplace: Campbeltown, Scotland
Date of death: 24 May 1974
Other clubs: Aberdeen University, Queen's Park (1909-11), Port Vale (1920-22)
Bought from: Queen's Park
Signed for LFC: £360, 29.08.1911
Liverpool debut: 30.09.1911
Last appearance: 27.12.1919
Contract expiry: May 1920
Win ratio: 40.71% W:46 D:20 L:47
LFC league games/goals: 100 / 0
Total LFC games/goals: 113 / 0

Player profile

Liverpool were fined £250 and an ex-director of the club, John Fare, was suspended from football for six months (reduced from two years) after buying Pursell for £360 from Queen's Park as the Reds failed to talk to his club prior to approaching him. Pursell's main strengths were his physique and speed and he was a regular in his debut season, 1911/12. He was in and out of the side during the next two years but did play in all eight of the cup ties which saw Liverpool reach their first FA Cup final in 1914 but it was Burnley who took the famous trophy home after a narrow 1-0 victory. Pursell was so described: "On his day a brilliant defender. One of the fastest full-backs playing. Provides the counterfoil to the dash of Longworth, his height standing him in good stead in his defensive work."

Controversy continued to follow Pursell's career as he along with three Liverpool players; Tom Miller, Thomas Fairfoul, Jackie Sheldon and three United players was found guilty of fixing a game between Liverpool and Manchester United on Good Friday 1915. Incidentally Pursell was the one who conceded a penalty in the game, most certainly on purpose, which to his dismay, Pat O'Connell missed. For his service to his country in the war Pursell's life ban from the game was lifted. World War I had taken the best years of his competitive playing career away from him, but he did return to Anfield after Peace was declared. Pursell fractured his arm in the first practice match of the 1919/20 season and wasn't ready for action until December when he was picked in consecutive first division games against Manchester United and Everton. However, these proved to be Pursell's only first-team appearances that season and he joined Port Vale in May 1920. He featured in 68 games for Vale until breaking his leg in a 1-1 draw against Leicester on 14 April 1922, which finished his career.

Appearances per season

Season League FA LC Europe Other Total
Totals 100 13 0 0 0 113
1911-1912 24 2 0 0 0 26
1912-1913 21 1 0 0 0 22
1913-1914 26 8 0 0 0 34
1914-1915 27 2 0 0 0 29
1919-1920 2 0 0 0 0 2

A more detailed look at the player's appearances

Total Opponent
8 Sunderland
7 Manchester City
7 Blackburn Rovers
6 Aston Villa
6 Manchester United
6 Sheffield United
6 Bradford City
5 Sheffield Wednesday
5 Chelsea
5 Everton
5 Bolton Wanderers
4 Burnley
4 Oldham Athletic
4 Derby
4 Tottenham
3 Notts County
3 Preston North End
3 Middlesbrough
3 Newcastle United
2 Bury
2 West Ham United
2 Arsenal
2 Barnsley
1 Bradford Park Avenue
1 Gillingham
1 Leyton
1 Stockport County
1 Fulham
1 Bristol City
Total Competition
100 League
13 FA Cup

Milestone Appearances

# Date Against Stadium Competition
1 30.09.1911 Sunderland Roker Park League
50 06.09.1913 Blackburn Rovers Ewood Park League
100 23.01.1915 The Wednesday Hillsborough League

Related Articles

Kenneth Campbell's life story - Chapter 5

Scottish keeper, Kenny Campbell, told his life story in the Weekly News. Chapter five was published on 11 June 1921.More

Kenneth Campbell's great cup run - Chapter 4

Scottish keeper, Kenny Campbell, told his life story in the Weekly News. Chapter four was published on 4 June 1921.More

The Good Friday scandal

When Liverpool and Manchester United players conspired to fix their match at Old Trafford in United's favour!More

Kenneth Campbell continues his life story – Chapter 2

Scottish keeper, Kenny Campbell, told his life story in the Weekly News. Chapter two was published on 14 May 1921.More

Other Clubs

Club Season Club rank League apps League goals Total apps Total goals
Aberdeen University N/A N/A N/A N/A
Queen's Park 1909-1910 Scotland Division 1 27 2 27 2
Queen's Park 1910-1911 Scotland Division 1 23 0 23 0
Port Vale 1920-1921 England Second Division 38 0 39 0
Port Vale 1921-1922 England Second Division 30 0 31 0
Total 118 2 120 2