While Christmas Day matches were once something of a tradition, our club has seldom played on Christmas Eve.
We’ve only ever played five competitive games (winning three and drawing two) on the 24th of December, and three friendlies.
Thankfully, all our games on this date have been local ones, the furthest trip being to Luton Town in 1910 in the Southern League.
in 1921, we beat Walthamstow Grange 3-2. Grange were a renowned club in the local area, having been formed in the late 1890s. They played their home games at various grounds, including our own Hare & Hounds until eventually settling at Walthamstow Stadium – which became Walthamstow Dog Stadium. They were here until 1931, when the ground was sold to the Chandler family and the club folded. The Chandlers ran the Dogs until 2008, when the site was sold for housing to L&Q.
The game against Romford was the 13th game Leyton had gone without losing. They defeated Romford 3-2 in a replay of an FA Amateur Cup First Round game after drawing the first game 2-2 a week earlier. Leyton would then play on Boxing Day (drawing 1-1 with Barking), on the 27th of December (drawing 2-2 with Yorkshire Amateurs in a friendly) and then again on New Year’s Eve, drawing 4-4 to Redhill. The 16-game unbeaten run came to an end a week into 1933, when Leyton lost 2-1 to Bromley in the London Senior Cup.
The next time Christmas Eve falls on a Saturday is 2022, but given the Essex Senior League’s reluctance to play any games anywhere near Christmas, it looks like it’s going to be a while before we play on the 24th again.
Thanks to club historian David Chapman, Charlie Ward and Steve Howe for the compilation of the club’s playing record.
|1898-99||Barking Woodville||South Essex League Div 1||Away||0-1||Lost|
|1910-11||Luton Town||Southern League Div 1||Home||3-0||Won|
|1921-22||Walthamstow Grange||London League Premier Division||Home||3-2||Won|
|1932-33||Romford||FA Amateur Cup (1st rd replay)||Away||3-2||Won|