George Ramsay and Aston Villa
I can see now the little dapper, well-built laddie...getting hold of the ball on the extreme wing, well within his own territory, and going off like streaked lightning, wiggling, waggling past opponents one after another and finally landing the ball between the sticks.
George Ramsay had a 52 year association with Aston Villa.
He entered the world of Villa when that world was still very young. Ramsay moved to Birmingham from Glasgow in 1874, and it was during that that very year that the football club had been formed. Villa Cross Wesleyan Chapel cricket team had decided to arrange some winter activity and 4 members (Jack Hughes, Frederick Matthews, Walter Price and William Scattergood) established the football club, inspired by seeing others play at Heathfield Road. Ramsay came across the Chapel boys playing in Aston Park. He joined in and impressed- so much so that he was invited to join the club and soon took over the captaincy.
Ramsay's influence on Aston Villa's formative years was so great that his tombstone records him as being 'a founder of Aston Villa'.
Ramsay played for Villa for 8 years (1874–1882) before a serious injury ended his career.He introduced the Scottish passing style of play to the club and was instrumental in securing the services of former Third Lanark forward Archie Hunter. The club's first enclosed ground at Perry Bar was acquired in 1876 under his guidance and he captained Villa to their first ever trophy win- the 1879–80 Birmingham Senior Cup, first entering the FA Cup in the same season.
Ramsay took on the role of secretary/ manger in 1884 and remarkably remained in charge until 1926.
Under Ramsay Aston Villa won the FA Cup 6 times (1887, 1895, 1897, 1905, 1913, 1920) and the Football League championship 6 times (1893–94, 1895–96, 1896–97, 1898–99, 1899–1900, 1909–10), in 1897 they became the second team to 'do the double'.