Tribute to Frank Costello
Frederick “Frank” Costello was born in Birmingham during 1884. After failing to make the grade at his first club of West Bromwich Albion he moved to Halesowen Town before heading to the south coast to join Southampton then of the Southern League in 1907.
Frank made his professional debut on 14th September 1907 scoring in a 2-0 win at Luton Town. Despite being described as “a trifle slow, he was clever with the ball and had a habit of disconcerting the opposition by making for goal when he was expected to make a pass”. In his first season he scored nine goals in 28 league appearances.
It was during the Saints run to the FA Cup semi-final during the same season that Frank played his best game, scoring a goal in the first half against Everton and then scored an amazing headed goal to seal the home team’s 3-2 win.
However Frank was injured for the majority of the 1908/09 season and by March he was transferred to West Ham United. He made twelve appearances for the Hammers before moving onto Bolton Wanderers. He failed to make the first team at Bolton and after a spell at Nelson he arrived at Penydarren Park for the 1911/12 season. Frank is in the front row of the Merthyr Town team photograph sitting right next to captain George Gates who sits behind the giant South Wales Cup.
At the end of the 1911/12 season he returned to Southampton where he turned out occasionally for Salisbury City.
During the Great War he was enlisted into the Royal Warwickshire Regiment and was killed in action in France on 19th December 1914.
Frank Costello who played for Merthyr Town is remembered on the Ploegsteert Memorial.