In 1885, football was a very popular pastime in Ardrossan with six teams based in the town. Ardrossan Annfield, Ardrossan Thistle and Ardrossan Union were founded and joined Ensign, White Star and Waverley, the last of whom was reported on for the first time since 1879.
KILWINNING MONKCASTLE 3 - ARDROSSAN WHITE STAR 3
This game was played on Saturday last (21 March 1885) on the ground of Monkcastle and resulted in a draw, each team scoring three goals
Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, 27 March 1885
ENSIGN 6 - IRVINE RANGERS 0
On Saturday last (4 April 1885), these teams met on the ground of the Ensign to play a friendly game. The afternoon being fine, there was a good turnout of spectators. On the whole, the play was of a promiscuous character, the passing game being very conspicuous for its absence. The match, however, terminated in favour of the home team by six goals to nil.
Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, 10 April 1885
UNION 1 - ARDROSSAN WAVERLEY 0
On Wednesday last (15 April 1885), these teams played at Ardrossan and after a hard game resulted in favour of the Union by one goal to nil.
Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, 17 April 1885
This was Waverley's first reported game since 1879.
GREEN STREET ROVERS 1 - ARDROSSAN THISTLE 4
The Ardrossan Thistle and Saltcoats Green Street Rovers played a game in Saltcoats (probably on 18 April 1885) in the presence of a few spectators. The Thistle won an easy game by four goals to one.
Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, 24 April 1885
KILBRIDE 3 - ARDROSSAN ENSIGN 2
A friendly game was played between these two clubs on the ground of the former on Saturday last (25 April 1885). The day was cold and a rather strong wind blew in a slanting direction across the goals which made the kicking a little erratic at times. The strangers won the toss and chose to play with the wind and with that advantage scored the only goal of the first half. On change of ends, the home team commenced on the offensive and scored a goal shortly after starting, taking two more in quick succession. The Ensign, playing well together against the wind, neatly scored their second goal. The home team again put the ball through but, as time was called, it was disallowed. A pleasant game thus ended in favour of the West Kilbride by three goals to two.
Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, 1 May 1885
BRITANNIA 3 - ARDROSSAN THISTLE 1
Last Friday night (1 May 1885), these teams met on the ground of the former and after a hard-contested game resulted in favour of the Britannia by three goals to one.
Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, 8 May 1885
ENSIGN 4 - ARDROSSAN WHITE STAR 2
These two local clubs met together to play a friendly game at football on the evening of Tuesday (2 June 1885) on a field lent for the occasion at North Crescent, Ardrossan. The game throughout was very even and hard on both sides. At the close of the game the result was Ensign four goals, White Star two, the Ensign thus being the winners. The only drawback to football here is the difficulty in getting a field to play on as the clubs have to pay an exorbitant price for two hours use of the field. The sum asked for the plan yearly is far in excess of what any young club can play. Is there no good philanthropist in our midst who might come forward and encourage this manly and healthy recreation?
Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, 5 June 1885
ARDROSSAN ANNFIELD 2 - SALTCOATS BRITANNIA 0
On Wednesday last (24 June 1885), these teams met on the ground of the former and after a well-contested game, resulted in favour of the Annfield by two goals to none.
Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, 26 June 1885
ENSIGN 2 - WEST KILBRIDE ATHLETIC 2
The popular and healthy game of football, though somewhat dull for various reasons of late, we notice, still commands the attention of the youth of the town but since the days of the well-known rival teams, Ardrossan Seafield and Saltcoats Crescent, we have not been favoured to anything like a scientific or exciting match. This is partly, if not mainly, due to the fact that the junior players have not had the same privileges as their senior brethren through want of playing ground and consequently they have not been unable to show themselves to the same extent in football circles as they might otherwise have done. However, the game has not been allowed to become extinct despite railway intrusion and police compulsion and now that the hope of participating in this most exhilarating pastime is about to be enjoyed - thanks to one of our own respected townsmen - we trust that we may be privileged to witness at least some interesting games during this season's campaign. On Saturday last (24 October 1885), the opening match of the season of the Ardrossan Ensign was played on the new ground at Annfield Park in North Crescent with the West Kilbride Athletics and judging from the work exhibited by several players in each team, we believe that further practice will tend to make them still more conspicuous and characterise them as good and while this remark can be applied to some, there are others who would do well to infuse into their play more discretionary kicking and thereby render the game all the more collective and scientific. The match took place under excellent weather auspices and in the presence of a goodly number of onlookers. Ardrossan kicked off and for the first ten minutes, Kilbride confined the home youths very closely to their fortress during which it was greatly endangered by a series of corner kicks. A kick from goal, however, relieved the pressure on their territory and subsequently play was carried on at midfield for the next five minutes fully and ere twenty minutes had elapsed, the Ensign team closed upon their opponents' citadel which was ultimately taken by a very clever shot. This success encouraged the home players and after several minutes rather loose play on both sides, while before half-time was called, the Athletics scored their first laurel. The play in the second half was, at intervals, somewhat promiscuous and as both teams were unmistakably well-matched, it seemed as if no further scoring was to be effected for either side. Such was not the case as Kilbride succeeded in scoring their second goal and thus equalised matters. Before time was announced, the Athletics shot the leather between the home posts a third time and whilst the altercation ensued the home team ran the ball between the strangers' uprights and thus placed both teams on an equal footing for a second time. The game, we understand ended in a draw, two goals each.
Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, 30 October 1885
A new ground, Annfield Park in North Crescent, was mentioned.
ATHLETIC 7 - ARDROSSAN ENSIGN 2
This game was played in Irvine before a good turnout of spectators. In the first half of the game, the Ardrossan scored two goals and their opponents three but on changing ends, the Athletic seemed to have the best of the play, scoring four goals and the strangers being deprived from scoring. For the Ensign, the half-backs and forwards played very well and for the Athletic, Orr, McCartney and Gilmour played best.
Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, 13 November 1885
ENSIGN 1 - GLASGOW TELEGRAPHISTS 0
A friendly game was played between the above clubs on Saturday last (21 November 1885) before a goodly number of spectators. The day was cold and a moderate breeze blew right across the goals making good play at times a little difficult. The game, during the first half, was pretty slack, the forwards of both teams showing a want of combination. On change of ends, the players wakened up on both sides and a hard game was played, the ball travelling quickly from goal to goal. About fifteen minutes from time, the home team scored the only goal of the game and the match thus ended in their favour by one to nothing. The back play of the home team was greatly admired as also that of the strangers.
Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, 27 November 1885
ENSIGN 3 - IRVINE ATHLETIC 0
On Saturday last (28 November 1885), a match was played between the Irvine Academicals and the Ardrossan Ensign on the ground of the former. The game all through was of an uninteresting character and resulted in favour of the home team by three goals to nil. The strangers objected to one of the goals being given on the plea of offside but their objection was overruled. The heaviness of Academicals against the light players of the Ensign and the wild charging indulged in by some of them told heavily against the strangers and contributed in great measure to the result of the game.
Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, 4 December 1885
ENSIGN 3 - IRVINE RANGERS 1
This game was played on the ground of Ensign on Saturday last (18 December 1885) before a goodly number of spectators. The day was fine for football-playing with scarcely any wind. The teams were very evenly matched and the game all through was of a superior description and very hard-contested. In the first half, the home team scored two goals and the strangers none and in the second half, both teams scored one, the game thus resulting in favour of the home team by three goals to one.
Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, 25 December 1885