1911/12 - Disappointment After First Championship Win

Last updated : 11 January 2007 By Honestman
Ayr United began there campaign in fine style determined to better their 2nd place of the previous season. Maximum points were taken from United's first nine league games, but it was the Scottish cup where the goals went in. a 1-1 away draw at Dumfries saw a resounding 5-1 win in the reply followed on 16th September with a 10-0 win over Whithorn. The 3rd qualifying round was no different and a 7-2 rout of Thornhill resulted. Beith put up a better fight in the 4th round losing only 1-0 to Ayr and United finally rounded up the serioes with a 3-2 win over Stenhousemuir on 28th October with over 4,000 people supporting United.

Lead scorer Charlie Phillipps had already scored a hat trick against Thornhill when he lined up against Dundee Hibs on 21st October and scored again in a 6-0 thrashing of the Dundee club. By now only Ayr United and Rangers were unbeaten in any of the Scottish or English leagues and excitement in the 'auld toon' was high with Scottish cup fever. However a 4-1 defeat by Dumbarton in the semi-final of the qualifying cup ended that particular dream and began a serious of small set backs for the club. A month later, on 16th December, Ayr lost their first league point since 7th January 1911. Defeat by St Johnstone at the Recreation ground confirmed St Johnstone as an Ayr United bogey at this time, becaming the first team that season to take points at Somerset Park, drawing 1-1.

By Christmas United were firm favourites for the title.followed two weeks later and on 27th January 1912 Ayr lost 3-0 to Leith away in the Scotish cup first round. The following week saw the match with Arthurlie go ahead at Dunterlie Park despite the freezing conditions and no other 2nd division game going ahead. Despite this it was Charlie Phillips who netted Ayr's winner to keep them top of the league

5 games to go and only 4 points needed to win the championship. A 6-1 defeat away to nearest challengers Dumbarton meant only a delay of a week before the final victory was complete. Albion Rovers had asked for their home game with United to be switched to Somerset Park so that they could ensure bigger gate receipts.

Even in those days the Coatbridge worthies did not flock in numbers to Rovers home games.

The United supporters were annoyed that Ayr lost 3-0 to Leith in a cup tie which they should have won. 2,500 spectators turned up with gate receipts being £70.

A defeat for Dumbarton and a 4-0 win for Ayr secured the championship. 35 points were gleaned from 22 league matches, winning 16, losing 3 and drawing 3.

The Ayrshire Cup and Ayr Charity Cup were both won in a very successful season for the Super U's.

The biggest dissapointment was the delaying of a successful motion by Celtic to allow the 2nd Division champions automatic promotion to the 1st Division. It was agreed that this change should be delayed by a season. Ayr United would have go through it all again before first division status could be secured.

Small consolation was that Ayr chairman, Thomas Steen was elected Treasurer to the Scottish Football Association.