319 Jack Pears

Biography

Highly experienced outside left Jack Pears joined City in June 1937, one of 15 new players signed by manager Ernest Blackburn that summer. Pears was put straight into the first team and started 35 consecutive matches between the first game of the season in late August and a home draw against Accrington in early March. Pears was an impressive goalscorer for a wideman and found his scoring form in the winter months, scoring braces of goals against Scunthorpe in the FA Cup, Darlington over the Christmas period and Hartlepools United in January – all three fixtures ended 4-0 to the Tigers. He topped these feats off with a hattrick in a January 10-1 demolition of Southport. In March 1938 Pears suffered an injury and City’s new teenage signing, Welshman Horace Cumner, took Pears’ outside left shirt for the remainder of the season. Jack left the club in the 1938 close season.

John “Jack” Pears was born and raised in Ormskirk by his fish hawker grandmother and widowed mother. He came through the Lancashire junior football scene in the mid 1920s and in August 1927 he signed amateur terms for First Division Liverpool. He signed professional terms for Liverpool in February 1928 but within six months he had transferred to Rotherham United without making a first team appearance for the Reds. Jack scored on his senior debut for Rotherham, a remarkable 1-11 opening day defeat against Bradford City, and his one season at Millmoor yielded a total of 22 starts and seven goals. Pears spent the 1929/30 season at Accrington Stanley, scoring 8 times in 21 starts before joined Second Division side Oldham Athletic in the 1930 close season. Jack stayed at Boundary Park for four years, making 97 senior appearances and scoring 34 goals – in the 1932/33 season he was the Latics’ top league goalscorer with 13 strikes, he scored hattricks in the 1931/32 season against Chesterfield and in the 1932/33 season against Notts County. Pears moved to Second Division rivals Preston North End in March 1934 and helped secured promotion to the top flight at the end of the season. He made 11 starts in the top flight for Preston, scoring goals against Tottenham Hotspur and Huddersfield Town, but after taking his Preston tally to 18 starts and 4 goals Jack was on the move again in November 1934, moving to Division Two side Sheffield United. He scored 4 times in 15 starts for the Blades before leaving Bramall Lane in the 1935 close season. He joined Division Two rivals Swansea Town that summer where he was a first team regular for two seasons and scored nine goals in 63 appearances prior to joining the Tigers.

In June 1938 Pears joined Rochdale but within three months, without making a first team start, he had moved to non-league Mossley. In 1939 he joined the Royal Army Ordnance Corps as a storeman based in Dover. After the war he settled in Horley, Surrey, where he died in October 1959.

Details

Nationality: England
Date/Place of Birth: 23 February 1904, Ormskirk
Hull City First Game: 28 August 1937, Wrexham H (Division Three North), 33 years, 186 days old
Hull City Final Game: 5 March 1938, Accrington Stanley H (Division Three North), 34 years, 10 days old

Clubs

Ormskirk St James (1925-1926), Skelmersdale United (1926), Burscough Rangers (1926-1927), Liverpool (1927-1928), Rotherham United (1928-1929), Accrington Stanley (1929-1930), Oldham Athletic (1930-1934), Preston North End (1934), Sheffield United (1934-1935), Swansea Town (1935-1937), Hull City (1937-1938), Rochdale (1938), Mossley (1938-1939)

Hull City Record

Career: 35 apps, 11 goals

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