The opening day of the fourth month of the year sees us look back on an early 20th century debutant, our one visit to a now famous club’s former ground and a player’s first goal.
The player grabbing his first PNE goal on April Fool’s Day, was no joke for him, as the second young player to sign from Bury in the space of 18 months announced himself to the North End faithful.
Yes, Simon Whaley scored his first goal for the Lilywhites on this date 2006. Billy Davies’ PNE won the game, with the 30 minute-timed strike being the solitary goal away at Coventry City.
Over the next three years, the winger scored some spectacular strikes amongst his 16 goals in 131 games before making the long move to Norwich City in July 2009.
Billy Lyon, one of the outstanding North End players of the early century, made his North End debut on this day in 1904.
A virtual ever-present for six seasons, he made 223 appearances at wing half (defensive midfielder), scoring nine goals. He was one of hundreds of Scots to play for the club over the years and his former clubs included the wonderfully named Third Lanark, Kirkintilloch Rob Roy and Inverness Clachnacuddin!
In the previous century, on this day in 1893, we made our only visit to North Road, the original league ground of Newton Heath. We suffered a 2-1 defeat, the only time in six meeting we failed to beat the east Manchester club.
The following season they had moved to Bank Street, which is now covered by the National Velodrome site. In 1903, Newton Heath changed their name to Manchester United and eight years later moved across the city to a new ground in Old Trafford!