An English league champion’s medal sold at Scottish auction house McTear’s on April 26 marks United’s first ever title win, in 1907-08. Awarded to Jack Nuttall for his role as assistant trainer for the side, it made a mid-estimate hammer price of £8500.
The 35mm award, in 15ct gold, 26.6g, reflects a successful period for United, who went on to win the Charity Shield in 1908 and then the FA Cup in 1909. The original Newton Heath club had morphed into Manchester United only in 1902 after debt problems. The second title success came in 1911 – but the next one would not be secured until 1951-52.
Cup winner and international player
It was one of the lots offered in the Glasgow saleroom’s inaugural Sporting Medals & Trophies sale. Many of the other highlights resulted from the archive of the late Tommy Gemmell (1930-2014), consigned to auction on behalf of the family of the player.
Gemmell made more than 250 league appearances for Paisley club St Mirren, helping them to win the 1959 Scottish Cup Final – one of the three times they have taken that honour. The jersey he wore in that game, with red number ‘10’ sewn to the reverse, sold for £6000 against an estimate of £500-800.
He won two caps for Scotland and the shirt he wore during his international games sold for £1900 (estimate £300-500). In May 1955 he played for Scotland in a 2-2 draw against Yugoslavia and a 3-0 win against Portugal, scoring a goal in the latter match.