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1913-14 Southern League : First Division

Manager: Syd King

The club was now in a better financial position and during the close season a new grandstand was built to replace the one erected in 1904. There were two new recruits, full-back Tommy Brandon and forward Alf Leafe. There was a creditable 1-1 draw at Millwall on the opening day followed by a 3-2 home defeat to Swindon Town. New boy Alf Leafe scored twice against Swindon and scored again in the next three games. In between defeats at Plymouth and Reading was a fine 5-1 home win against Southampton. A trip to Coventry City in November produced a 4-2 victory, with Leafe claiming a hat-trick. The centre-forward was on top of his form and scored in each of the victories against Gillingham, Brighton and Portsmouth. There was a poor 4-1 defeat at Swindon that saw Tom Brandon sent off. In early January the Hammers fans were in for a treat as 14 goals were scored in successive home games. First up were Bristol Rovers who were beaten 6-1, with Syd Puddefoot scoring a hat-trick. Next was an FA Cup tie with Chesterfield of the Midland League. Fresh from his earlier hat-trick, centre-forward Puddefoot went better by scoring five in the 8-1 demolition. The second round of the FA Cup saw Crystal Palace beaten 2-0, with both goals being scored by Dan Bailey. The next round brought Liverpool to Upton Park, where the teams fought out a 1-1 draw. The Merseysiders were too strong in the replay, winning 5-1 before an attendance of 45,000. In the league there were seven successive wins, pushing the side up to third in the table. There was a shock in April when the Hammers played at Watford. The home side, languishing near the bottom of the league, won 6-0. This was a setback and only one win was recorded in the remaining games of the season. It was a good win, however, beating old rivals Millwall 3-2 at home. The campaign ended with a 5-1 defeat at Portsmouth, which saw the side finish in sixth position.

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