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Captains Collection

The 1880 Captains Collection Shirt

Figure image

1880 Season History

FIRST CAPTAINED: v Moseley on October 23 1880, 0-0 draw

Following a merger of three other clubs, the Leicester Football Club was born, adopting a black playing shirt and playing at Belgrave Cricket and Cycle Ground, then at Victoria Park, which was also the venue for the city’s racecourse. The club's first logo was based on the town's crest and integrated the reptile creature, a wyvern, which represents war, envy and pestilence, but it is also a symbol of power.

Born in Somerset, the fly-half Alexander Brice, was elected Leicester's first captain, winning 14 votes to 2 over John Symington, who became his vice. He was a schoolmaster by day and the eldest on the team. 

An inauspicious debut fixture against Moseley ended 0-0 at the Belgrave Cricket and Cycle Ground on October 23, with Leicester adopting black as the club colours and becoming known as “The Death or Glory Boys”. After the fixture, a letter to the local newspaper said: “It is a most exhilarating game but must it be played in such a manner to endanger life and limb?” 

Early opponents included Moseley, Coventry and Nuneaton, who would become regular rivals over the next century, and Northampton, formed in the same year, as well as long-gone Leicester Victoria, Burton Anglesey Rovers, Edgbaston Crusaders and Derby Wanderers.