24/10/1925 Belfast England 0-0
Elisha Scott, David Rollo, Billy McConnell, Joe Gowdy, Harry Chatton, Tom Sloan, Andy Bothwell, Bobby Irvine, Hugh Davey, Jimmy Hopkins, David McMullan
Ireland and England played out their first ever goalless draw; a result that was probably fair. England had the superior finesse, but Ireland played with greater energy. Both teams were guilty of wild shooting, though both goalkeepers also came up with some excellent close-range saves when called upon. The first half was slow, whilst play improved in the second half. England also improved as the game went on, but could not find a finishing touch.
The most disappointing player for England was centre-forward Ashton. He was the seventh man to captain England in his only international, and the last. He often shot disappointingly rather than passing, and did not lead the line well. The days of the Corinthian amateurs playing for England were coming to an end; after Ashton, only one more Corinthian appeared for England – Baishe Bower, who made his final appearance in 1927.
During the summer of 1925, the offside rule was changed. From now on, a striker would only need two opponents (including the goalkeeper) between him and the opposition goal-line in order to be onside (as opposed to three previously). This had the desired effect of a huge increase in goals; the number of goals scored in the Football League rose from 4700 in 1924-25 to 6373 in 1925-26. It is ironic, therefore, that the first England international played under the new rules should remain scoreless.