As part of the 2019/20 celebrations of the club’s 140 year history, Rovers are inducting one legendary player from each of the 14 decades into the Hall of Fame. This week it is the 1890s.
On August 3, it was revealed that Rovers supporters had chosen to induct Albert Jenkins into the Rovers' Hall of Fame. Click here to find out more about Jenkins and read about the rest of the club’s Hall of Famers.
This week, supporters are invited to vote for the standout player of the 1890s from a four-man shortlist which includes Walter Langton, Jack Eggett, Billy Linward, and Arnold Oxspring. Voting closes on August 23 and the winner will be revealed at half-time during Rovers home match against Lincoln City.
The four options are as follows:
Walter was one of the longest-serving players in Rovers’ history, making his debut in 1887 and retiring after the 1904-05 season. He worked as a machinist at the Plant works and played for Rovers in a number of positions, usually either centre-forward or full-back. He was a member of the team that won the Sheffield and Hallamshire FA Senior Challenge Cup final in 1890-91 and won two Midland League champions medals in 1896-97 and 1898-99. He also played in Rovers’ first Football League game against Burslem Port Vale in September 1901 and was a regular in Rovers’ first two League seasons. He lived to be 85.
An outstanding goalkeeper and a great character, Jack joined Rovers in 1894 from his local club, Wisbech Town. He was a member of the team that won the Midland League in both 1896-97 and 1898-99 and went on to be a regular in Rovers’ first two Football League seasons. He could often be found just before kick-off in a local tavern, enjoying a drink after a morning’s work, although his unorthodox preparation didn’t interfere with his performances on the field. After leaving Rovers in 1903 he played for Woolwich Arsenal and then went on to be a regular performer for Tottenham Hotspur, then in the Southern League.
Outside-left Billy Linward came from Hull and joined Rovers before the 1895-96 season, staying with the club until 1901. He was in the team which won the Midland League championship in 1896-97 and which repeated the feat two years later. A player with an eye for goal, he contributed over 60 goals in competitive matches during his six seasons at the Intake Ground. In 1901 he joined Southern League West Ham United and then he moved on to Woolwich Arsenal, helping them gain promotion to the First Division of the Football League for the first time in 1903-04.
Arnold joined Rovers in 1897, the season after they had won the Midland League for the first time. He hit four goals on his debut in September 1897, a 6-0 home win over Long Eaton Rangers, and went on to score 56 goals in competitive games over three seasons. He was a key member of the side that secured Rovers’ second Midland League title in 1898-99, forming an effective partnership with Billy Linward. In 1900 Arnold signed for Football League side Barnsley and played for them for eleven years.
Vote for the player you want inducted into the Hall of Fame below:
The winner will be announced at half-time during Rovers home Sky Bet League One match vs Lincoln City.