Jack Kendall (full name John William Kendall)

Born 9 October 1905 – Died October 1961.

Jack was the first full-time professional to be signed by the newly formed ‘Posh’ in 1934 as the club prepared for its first season in the Midland League. Jack was first-choice goalkeeper at the Posh for four years.

Jack made 220 appearances in the Football League playing for Lincoln City (in two spells), Everton, Preston North End and Sheffield United before joining the Posh where he played 125 games in the Midland League and 9 times in the FA Cup.

Jack was born in Broughton, near Brigg in Lincolnshire. He played football for his local club before joining Lincoln City making his first-team debut on 2 September 1922, shortly before his 17th birthday, and kept a clean sheet against Halifax Town in the Football League Third Division North. Later that season, he inadvertently played a leading role in Wigan Borough’s record Football League victory, by nine goals to one. On 3 March 1923, Lincoln were 2–0 behind away at Wigan Borough when Jack was knocked unconscious by the ball rebounding off the frame of the goal and striking him on the back of the head. He was taken to hospital, and with full-back George Greaves as stand-in goalkeeper, Lincoln conceded a further seven goals.

First Division club Everton sent a director to watch Jack in March 1924; he reported back “very favorably”, and thought the player could be available for “about £1,500”. After further scouting trips, the club authorised his purchase at “up to £1,000”. A fee of £1,250 was eventually agreed, and Jack joined Everton in April. Selected instead of incumbent Alfred Harland for the second of three games in four days over the Easter weekend, he made what the Daily Express described as “a promising debut” as Everton beat Tottenham Hotspur 4–2. With Harland injured, Jack began the 1924–25 season in the first team, and kept his place for a time after Harland’s return to fitness. He made two more first-team appearances that season, in February 1925, again while Harland was unfit. At the end of the season, he was initially transfer-listed at a fee of £750, but was later re-engaged at a weekly wage of £6.

Early in the 1925–26 season, both Harland and Jack played, but when Everton introduced a new first-team goalkeeper in England international Harry Hardy in October 1925, both were made available for transfer at fees of £1,500. The directors were not prepared to allow either to go out on loan to Crystal Palace. Jack was retained for 1926–27, but returned for pre-season training in need of knee cartilage surgery that was to leave him unavailable for selection until mid-November. He was transfer-listed again in April 1927 at a fee of £100, and joined Preston North End in May for £50; Everton agreed to pay him the same amount as accrued share of any long-service benefit which he might have expected.

Jack made only two league appearances for Preston, and rejoined Lincoln City in the 1928 close season. He eventually displaced Len Hill as first choice goalkeeper, and played his last game for Lincoln in March 1930. He then returned to the First Division with Sheffield Utd. Soon afterwards, he was involved in an 8–1 defeat against Arsenal at Highbury. Injured after half an hour, by which time Arsenal were already three goals to the good, he remained on the field while they scored another three, and after he left, another two. The last of his 80 league appearances for Sheffield United, and his last in the Football League, was also against Arsenal: a 2–0 defeat on the final day of the 1933–34 season that confirmed Arsenal as league champions.

Jack died in October 1961.

Posh Record:

Competition Starts Used Subs Unused Sub Goals
Midland League 125 0 0 0
FA Cup 9 0 0 0
Total 134 0 0 0