original illustrations of the kits worn during the season
The Season in brief
Poor health caused Jack Robson to stand down as United's manager in October 1922, although he remained at the club as Assistant Manager until his death in January 1922. His replacement John Chapman, who had previously managed at Airdrieonians, was reputedly one of the highest paid managers in the Football League when he assumed control on November 1st 1921.
Chapman inherited a team in decline. Robson's poor health during the close season prevented him from strengthening the side, and although the Board had rejected offers for both Jack Mew and Joe Spence, Fred Hopkin was sold to Liverpool for £2,500. Billy Meredith had also left the club, granted a free transfer at last, he rejoined Manchester City.
United won only one of Chapman's first fourteen games in charge and lay rooted to the bottom of the table by the end of January. An unlikely escape seemed possible when the side managed to remain unbeaten in six games, but then six consecutive defeats condemned them to the Second Division for the first time since 1905/06. United can have few complaints - they had lost more games than any other side, won fewer, had the worst defensive record and the poorest attack.
Black socks, with two red bands at the top, were worn with both the home and change kits in 1921/22, and can be seen in a photograph of the squad taken in August 1921. United's first team, photographed in September 1921, can be seen wearing all black socks.
We have been able to determine that United's goalkeepers wore a heavy woolen green jersey.
Although we have been unable to discover any evidence from this season of United's goalkeeper change shirt, we believe, from later photographic evidence and given the limited colour options available under League regulayions, it was probably royal blue.