Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Origins of South Melbourne United

Forgot that I had this in the archives. Short but interesting read on the origins of one of the three clubs that merged to form our club. The next question is of course, how far back does South Melbourne Soccer Club go?


WHAT OF SOUTH MELBOURNE?
By GUY HOOPER
Soccer News, August 1, 1953

Soccer has been played in and around South Melbourne for very many years and the present South Melbourne United club is one of the oldest in the Association today.
It might be said, on looking back, that the foundations of the present club were laid in 1932, when a team, playing as the Middle Park Schoolboys' Soccer Club, became known as the South Melbourne Juniors.
This team of young enthusiasts were premiers of schoolboy football for a couple of years running and in 1935 they won the junior premiership.
The same year saw a merger between the South Melbourne Soccer Club and the South Melbourne Juniors, and the following year, 1936, heralded the birth of South Melbourne United as we know it today.
Two of the stalwarts of the new club in the persons of Jack Guthrie and Jack Olsen are still connected with the club today. Jack Olsen was secretary in those days when the young club was suffering from growing pains, but to the credit of himself and the committee of the time, it soon became a virile force.
Jack Olsen is still one of the keenest supporters, although he is probably best known in soccer circles now as the secretary of the Victorian Junior Soccer Association.
With the advent of the year 1938, the club entered the senior ranks, and for some years after that they played in the First Division.
The grimy paw of war, however, reached out and sapped the strength of the club. Altogether about 95 per cent. of the members answered the call, and it was during this period that relegation to the Second Division took place.
The name of South Melbourne is still seen near the top of this division, the old enthusiasm is still there and it can by no means be said that South Melbourne United's sights have been lowered from the First Division.

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