<< Season 1904-05 >>

Herbert Smith Reading finished runners-up for the second time in three years, inspired by captain Herbert Smith. Smith was the last Reading player to represent England until Nicky Shorey in 2007, although in the interim Johnny Brooks, Neil Webb, Kerry Dixon and Keith Curle all went on to represent England having made their names at Reading. Herbert Smith was also a member of the Great Britain Olympic team that won the gold medal in 1908 and the Oxford City team that won the FA Amateur Cup in 1906. He went on to be a distinguished football administrator. His success was ascribed to the fact that he was a teetotaller.

The season also saw the arrival of one of Reading's longest serving players, Fred Bartholomew. A centre half or full back, he continued playing until 1923, when he became groundsman at Elm Park, a post that he held into the 1960s. He died in 1979.

Reading also reached the final of the Southern Charity Cup, sharing the trophy following a 0-0 draw with Tottenham.

Note The result of the game away to Plymouth on 25th March 1904 is given as 0-1 in DRFC, and 0-2 in HOE and The Official Centenary History of the Southern League. I believe that the former is correct.

Southern League Division 1 (2nd)

                        PL   W  D  L  GF  GA  PTS     H    A  
 1. Bristol Rovers      34  20  8  6  74  36   48    1-1  0-0 
 2. READING             34  18  7  9  57  38   43
 3. Southampton         34  18  7  9  54  40   43    2-0  0-3 
 4. Plymouth Arg        34  18  5 11  57  39   41    2-0  0-1*
 5. Tottenham H         34  15  8 11  53  34   38    3-2  3-1 
 6. Fulham              34  14 10 10  46  34   38    0-0  0-2 
 7. Queens Park Rang    34  14  8 12  51  46   36    3-0  2-4 
 8. Portsmouth          34  16  4 14  61  56   36    5-0  5-3 
 9. New Brompton        34  11 11 12  40  41   33    3-1  0-1 
10. Watford             34  15  3 16  41  44   33    1-3  2-3 
11. West Ham Utd        34  12  8 14  48  42   32    1-0  2-0 
12. Brighton & HA       34  13  6 15  44  45   32    2-2  1-0 
13. Northampton T       34  12  8 14  43  54   32    4-0  1-1 
14. Brentford           34  10  9 15  33  38   29    1-0  0-0 
15. Millwall            34  11  7 16  38  47   29    2-1  2-3 
16. Swindon Town        34  12  5 17  41  59   29    2-1  2-1 
17. Luton Town          34  12  3 19  45  54   27    1-0  0-2 
18. Wellingborough+*    34   5  3 26  25 104   13    3-1  1-1 

    * see note above
    + after Test Match
    * Wellingborough resigned
Western League Division 1 (9th)
                        PL   W  D  L  GF  GA  PTS
 1. Plymouth Arg        20  13  4  3  52  18   30
 2. Brentford           20  11  6  3  30  22   28
 3. Southampton         20  11  2  7  45  22   24
 4. Portsmouth          20  10  3  7  29  30   23
 5. West Ham Utd        20   8  4  8  37  42   20
 6. Fulham              20   7  3 10  29  32   17
 7. Millwall            20   7  3 10  32  40   17
 8. Tottenham H         20   5  6  9  20  28   16
 9. READING             20   6  3 11  27  37   15
10. Bristol Rovers      20   7  1 12  32  44   15
11. Queens Park Rang    20   6  3 11  27  45   15

FA Cup

IR     BrentfordS        A  D  1-1
IR(R)  BrentfordS        H  W  2-0
R1     FulhamS           A  D  0-0
R1(R)  FulhamS           H  D  0-0 *
R1(2R) FulhamS           *  L  0-1

       * after extra time
       * at White Hart Lane, London, after extra time