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The Lost Dog that saved Manchester United

Strange But True Facts by Don Hale


It seems quite strange by today’s modern standards when you consider that

Manchester United Football Club may never have come into existence, had it not been for the City Police - and a lost dog!

The curious tale of the dog - excuse the pun – is still a legendary story in the region and dates back to 1902, just before the original Newton Heath LYR (Lancashire &

Yorkshire Railway) football team changed their name to Manchester United.

Founded in 1878 from an enthusiastic bunch of young railway workers at the local

Carriage and Wagon Works, the club had made tremendous strides since first joining the Football Alliance in 1889/90, and then being elected to the Football League, Division One in 1892/3.

This progress however, came at a cost, with a full-time club secretary, professional players’ wages to consider and the increased expenses of playing matches up and down the country in a national league.

By early 1902, and following some indifferent results on the pitch, Newton Heath

LYC was in severe financial difficulties. Desperate for cash, they held a series of fundraising events, with one staged at the village hall and organised by Heath captain

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