EVERTONS LATEST WIN PLUS A WORD TO THE REFEREE
April 1, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
By Bee (Ernest Edwards)
Everton 5, Huddersfield Town 2
A word allow me, Mr. Referee Duerden, Football is a man’s game, heavy fair shoulder-charging and keen tackling are permitted and should be encouraged. Everton’s 5-2 over Huddersfield Town at Goodison Park produced intensity that bordered on the dangerous and unfair. Clipping this would have made this game much nicer. One caution was administered; earlier cautions would have shown determination to keep the game clear of venomous tackling. It was not a dirty game, yet its many bright lines were shrouded by the memory of incidents which one does not associate with the standing and friendship of Huddersfield Town. Having said this, let us be quite fair. The visitors might have won this game if their goalkeeper, Clegg had not suffered a severe injury. At the moment it was 3-2 for Everton and throughout the second half Everton’s defence had been pummelled, because Jackson could hardly kick a ball through a attained thigh. Huddersfield were sharp, decisive and attractive, and modelled their approach by means of the ground-ball. They looked likely to equalise any moment, despite the steadfastness of Burnett, Greenhalgh, Humphreys, and others, Mercer did monumental work in forecasting goals by discretionary passes along the ground to inside forwards.
Watson, most unobtrusive half-back in the game, and one of the most polished, rubbed but the Yorkshire side’s chance of surprising the champions challengers by scoring with a free kick and finally Wainwright gained a further goal –two in two minutes against a deputising goalkeeper. The game was marked by sparkling, starting sequences. Everton’s new boy from Rock ferry, Higgins, scored with a strong shot at Everton’s first advance. Glazzard did likewise at Huddersfield’s first attack –two goals in the space of half a minute. It seemed impossible to squeeze two in such a short space of time. But that was not all; Wainwright scoring a leading goal later went clean through, half topped a shot and put his hands to his head in disgust at “his miss” only to find the ball bump and curl beyond goalkeeper Clegg. Carr a very smart inside forward made the game anew by scoring as pretty a goal as one could wish to see and thereafter Everton were tired and taut, as was natural after their airing in Germany at mid-week. The margin of the win was exaggeration indeed it is open to question whether they deserved to win, because Huddersfield had long spells of superiority and much of the losers’ work bore a classic mark. What a pity, therefore the referee had not breached the breach early on. Attendance 41,000 weather perfect. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson (TG), half-backs; Johnson, Wainwright, Higgins, Fielding, and Boyes, forwards. Huddersfield Town; Clegg, goal; Bailey and Simpson, backs; Barker, Boot, and Watson (A), half-backs; Bateman, Glazzard, Brook, Carr and Poole, forwards. Referee; Mr. R. Duerden (Morecambe).
• Liverpool won 5-2 at Middlesbrough. Done (3), Balmer, Fagan, and Harley own goal for Middlesbrough, and Hardwick (penalty).
EVERTON HERO; POSSIBLE ‘CAP’
April 1, 1946. The Evening Express
If the will to succeed can produce results then Everton are going to win the League North championship. Their latest victory -5-2 over Huddersfield Town –gave us yet another example of the fighting spirit of Everton who are still two points behind Sheffield United with eight games to play. The latest here was George Jackson, the “evergreen” full back, whom some folk around me commented was having an off day. When I tell them the story of Jackson however, they will withdrew their words. George received a knock in Munster on Wednesday, and in the dressing-room before the game one Saturday he hurt his side making it difficult for him to turn quickly. Yet that did not stop Jackson from going out there; and playing his part in the victory. Throughout George was playing under strain and in pain and no wonder he always took the “safety first” road and found touch whenever he was pressed. For 80 minutes Jackson stuck to his task, and then went to outside right to end this sensational game. Jackson’s gallantry may help in bringing to his centre-half colleague, Jack Humphreys his first cap for Wales. Humphreys was ever-ready to cover Jackson and he did it amazingly well and certainly to the complete satisfaction of Mr. Herbert Powell, secretary of the Football Association of Wales, who, as I mentioned was at the game spotting talent for his May 4 international side. Even if Humphreys is not selected it is pretty certain that Everton will supply the centre-half, for Tommy Jones is quite fit again, and only the consistency of Humphreys is keeping Tommy “on reserve” at the moment. Mr. Powell was in earnest conversation with Mr. Will Gibbins, the Everton chairman, after the game, and I have a feeling he was securing Everton’s customary promise of co-operation. Mr. Powell officially takes over office today. And he carries our good wishes.
What A Beauty
One of the highlight’s of Everton’s 5-2 win over Huddersfield Town –curious that Liverpool should also win by the same score – was the Blues fourth goal. Gordon Watson was called to take a 25 yard free kick and he hit home an amazing shot, true as an arrow, and giving deputy goalkeeper, Bailey no earthly chance. That goal was a beauty from one of the most accurate ball placers in the game. It must be a long time since Gordon got a goal, but this was worth all the waiting. I liked, too, Wainwright’s hook home a few second’s later, giving us two goals in the last 60 seconds, whereas we had two in the opening 90 seconds. These are the thrills which make football. In addition we had two characteristic Wainwright goals –one final shot was a trifle fortunate –and a simple effort by Town’s Carr who failed later with much easier openings. This was not Everton’s best, in fact they had rather a sticky second half. Anyway had Huddersfield shown any accuracy in shooting during the opening moments of the second half. Everton would not have won. It was the half-backs so ably covered by Greenhalgh – the game’s best back – and Burnett, who eventually wore down Town. And Everton had got right on top again before Clegg’s right shoulder muscles were torn when Higgin’s head got underneath his arm. Bailey did not let Huddersfield down in fact his goalkeeping reminded us of Sunderland’s Brown, at Anfield. I though Everton made rather a mistake in not employing Boyes enough early on, but they were rare opportunists, and delighted with the grace and artistry. Fielding was masterly in his opening-creating and rather unlucky not to get a goal while Wainwright revelled in the precision long punts of skipper Greenhalgh and the Higggin’ head flicks. The fact that Everton have two inside forwards of different moulds has much to do with their success. Higgins is good. Make no mistake about that. The lad has fine ideas; is unhesitant in having a go he got a fine goal –and is brimful of confidence. With more experience he should be a winner. The power of propulsion of Mercer and Watson helped to make this win possible, and voting Johnson shows he has what it takes to make a winger. Given time to get back his football “legs” Johnson will be all right. This was another grand afternoon for the 45,000 fans drawn there by the sheer attractionness of Everton, whose programme is now in such demand that Secretary-Manager Mr. Theo Kelly had two editions.
April 1, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Everton showed two sides of themselves against Huddersfield in the first half they played delighted football, and though Huddersfield batted grimly. Everton’s attack stood out. Starting with two goals in the first two minutes (per Higgins and Glazzard), the subsequently first half play maintained the same satisfying note, and when Wainwright put two more in half an hour Everton seemed for a comfortable victory. Then rearguard hesitation allowed Carr to reduced the debit and take a lot of confidence out of the Blues. From being smooth-running machine they started to mile on a couple of cylinders, and had a hard job handling on to their lead, for Huddersfield had gained the hope which had been missing in the first portion. Then came the flow which again turned the game inside out. Clegg was carried off with torn shoulder muscles and full-back Bailey went into goal. At the same time Jackson went outside right for Everton, where Johnson had been having a rough passenger against Simpson, and in a thrilling finish Everton got a couple of goals –a smashing free kick by Watson and a great shot by Wainwright –to settle Huddersfield hope beyond doubt. Star of the winning side was Fielding, whose body swerve nevertheless his opposition and whose dribbling powers kicks with any of the “old matter.” In an entirely different with Wainwright is equally as brilliant. He taken the shortest route to goal and is always ready to shoot any reasonable position. Two of his goals from passes by Greenhalgh. Johnson is hardly ripe for senior duty but Higgins whom I was chiefly for the first goal had plenty of probabes and quick being to size up possible openings even if he did once or twice fall to rumble. Fielding objective. After a good start Mercer faded out and seemed over-tired.
EVERTON AT BRADFORD
April 2, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Everton go to Bradford tomorrow to play the League match postponed a couple of months back, and hope to turn out almost the same side as that which defeated Huddersfield, the only change being Bentham at right half and Grant at outside right. It will not be known definitely until later tomorrow whether all those named below will be able to make the trip. Mercer did not come into the reckoning, so he is playing in the Army v F.A game at Wembley on Saturday and is not available. Everton will not find the Yorkshire side easy meat for they have lost few games at home this season and managed to pull off a goalless draw at Goodison –the only one there have so far. The Blues can afford to take no chance and must go all out for victory from the start –and not slack off as they did at one period against Huddersfield. A win is vital if they are to keep up their challenge to Sheffield United. Probable team; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Grant, Wainwright, Higgins, Fielding, Boyes.
EVERTON AT BRADFORD
April 2, 1946, The Evening Express
Main interest will centre, on Everton’s duel with strong and solid Bradford. This because it may prove the vital match in the destination of the League North Championship. A defeat for the Blues will be a “body blow” for it will mean their leaders, and rivals, Sheffield United, being two points ahead with a match in hand. However, looking at the brighter side of the picture if Everton win they will be level on points with the United who will still have that game in hand. Everton have a slightly better goal-avenge. Honestly if Everton manage to pull through with the points tomorrow I shall be supremely confident of their eventual success. The Blues will be without Joe Mercer, who is debarred from playing because he appears at Wembley on Saturday for the F.A., so it is probable than Stan Bentham will be at right half, where he has given some amazingly good displays. Jackson was at Goodison Park early yesterday receiving attention for his thigh injury, and he is expected to be fit. Secretary Manager Theo Kelly can name only a probable team, but the only anticipated forward change is Grant at outside-right for Johnson with Higgins retaining leadership. Well, Billy has a goal-a-match average. Bradford have dropped only nine out of 34 points played for at home, but Everton have gained no fewer than 19 points away, and their only league defeat was on January 13 when they lost 2-1 at Balckburn. Since then they have played 10 matches. It was on February 2 that Bradford came to Goodison Park and picked up a point with a goalless draw, but I take the Blues to gain both this time. Everton (probable); Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Grant, Wainwright, Higgins, Fielding, Boyes.
Everton have agreed to play a combined team selected from other Lancashire clubs by Major R. Howard, secretary of Lancashire C.C., at Goodison Park on May 11. This is in aid of the Old Trafford Rebuilding Fund.
GRAND DISPLAY BY EVERTON
April 4, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
Bradford 1, Everton 2
A first half feast of copybook football right in the classical mould richly entitled Everton to the precious points they took from Park Avenue yesterday on a ground where on all and sundry among recent visitors have been laid low. If Everton’s finishing had been on a par with their drizzling art in approach there must have been an avalanche of goals. As it was a bonny opportunistic effort by Grant in eighteen minutes and Boyes drive after Fielding’s wizardry had paved the way eleven minutes later, were goals that far from adequately told that the stow of Everton’s entrancing arts and crafts. They were a team with a capital “T” Fielding genius made him the forward star of the match, and the Everton forwards ran the Bradford defence dizzy by their superb foot craft. The wing half-backs fetched and carried for the forwards like trained waiters and the whole defence was a model of outstanding positions sense. Humphreys and the backs dovetailing so efficiently that the Bradford forwards scarcely had a look in. Bradford launched a second half rally that surprised everyone by its intensity, and it was then that Burnett linked his name with Fielding’s as the men of the match. His goalkeeping was the last word in class and Everton’s rear ranks were subjected to such a fierce siege that the lead must have been lost but for his efforts. As it was only Shackleton –seventeen minutes after the interval – could beat him. Attendance 10,072. Receipts £842. Bradford; Farr, goal; Greenwood and Henworth, backs; McTaff, Danskin, and White (R.), half-backs; Smith, Shackleton, Gibbons (A.R.), McCall, and Walker, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Humphreys and Watson, half-backs; Grant, Stevenson, Higgins, Fielding and Boyes, forwards.
• Liverpool beat Southport 2-0, Done (2)
EVERTON’S FINE DISPLAY
April 4, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Everton’s win at Bradford takes them to the top of the League North table by a fractional advantage over Sheffield United in goal avenge, though they have now, of course, played one more game than the Yorkshire side. Everton’s display in the first half at Park Avenue yesterday was voted by the Yorkshire folk as far and away the most cultured feast of football’s richest arts seen on the ground this season. Despite the team changes which, incidentally, caused Wainwright to be much missed. Blues gave Bradford (made to look very small beer in comparision) an object lesson by team work stamped in every link with the hallmark of class, and a mere 2-0 interval lead from Grant and Boyes was almost fantastic, so inadequately did it tell of choice forward play, wing half back resources, and well nigh perfect defence positional sense. Humphreys, and the backs were commanding figures and Boyes the most menacing winger afield, but the stars of the match beyond compare were Fielding and Burnett. Fielding was in a class by himself as the finest inside forward on view –a genius who made everybody wonder why he is not an automatic England choice. Some of his thunder was stolen by Burnett when Bradford surprised everybody by bulling but a desperate game saving bid after the interval. It shook the Blues backs and half backs so much that an equaliser surely must have followed a Shackleton goal had there been the slightest suggestion of last-line unsteadiness, as it was Burnett gave it enough and finished cameo of goalkeeping. He got the ball invariably like a cricketer, and his judgement under a well-nigh siege of 20 minutes or so, was beyond reproach.
Everton hope to have Catterick back in their side for their important League game with Chesterfield at Goodison Park on Saturday, but it will not be known for certain until after he has had a try-out tomorrow. As Mercer is playing in the Army-F.A game at Wembley, Bentham is at right half, Stevenson resumes on the extreme right flank, and Wainwright is available as his partner. Chesterfield will have out the same team as last week, which includes another coal miner in Swinscoe, making his third senior appearance. There have been a number of changes in their side since they defeated Liverpool in the Cup Last season. Teams; Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick or Higgins, Fielding, Boyes. Chesterfield; Middleton; Watson (W.), Kidd; Goodfellow, Whitaker, Pringle; Sinclair, Hart, Swinscoe, Ottewell, Roberts.
EVERTON LEAD ON GOAL AVERAGE
April 4, 1946. The Evening Express
Everton seen to have a sticky period in every game. It generally comes just after the interval, thus giving a beaten team to heart to stage a recovery. It happened against Huddersfield and certainty against Bradford at park-avenue, yesterday. At the interval, with Everton leading through Grant and Boyes goals, one would not have given a farthing for Bradford’s chances, but the Avenue were able to take the initiative and for a long periods the Everton goal was subjected to a terrific hammering. Shackleton reduced the lead and then two goals were disallowed for infringements as Everton tried in vain to shake off an opposition which in the first half was made to look easy. The boos for Shackleton early on were turned to cheers as Avenue cutting out all thrill, set about their job. It was just fighting football, with Everton still providing the classic touches which enabled them to set the seal on the game in the first half. The Blues were deserving of a win, which establishes them as favourites for the title. Everton now lead the League on goal average, but Sheffield United have a match in hand. However, the fact that Everton have once again taken the lead is the main thing. I must say, however, that if Everton so readily allow the mastery to slip from them as they did yesterday, they will not become champions. Fielding was the “daddy” of them all yesterday, and that we did not see more of him in the second half was because Bradford dictated a defensive policy for the Blues. I would have preferred that Everton could have made attack the best defence, but we cannot have it all one’s own way. Humphreys was a grand defender, and Burnett had a brilliant day in goal. Jackson left walker too much room late on, but the wing half-backs, Bentham and Watson, pleased, and Boyes was a willing Fielding foil. Stevenson was hard hit in a game of two phrases, in which Everton’s superior crafts and opportunism decided the issue early on. Everton hope to have Harry Catterick back at centre forward for Saturday’s match with Chesterfield at Goodison Park, and Wainwright will be returning to inside right, with Stevenson as his partner. Bentham continues at right half, as Mercer plays at Wembley.
Everton Reserves (v. Derby County Res at Derby); Sagar; Curwen, Dugdale; Sweeney, Lindley, Davies; Rawlings, Grant, Higgins, or Bell, Johnson, O’Neill.
STIFF TASK FOR BLUES
April 5, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
All Everton’s League games from now to the end of the season will be of cup-tie intensity, for every club they meet will be out to lower the Blues’ colours and have the honour of putting an end to their expanding and impressive list of unbeaten engagements. Not since January 12, when they lost at Blackburn, have Everton suffered a League reverse. They have since played eleven matches and taken 19 out of 22 points, with a goal average of 28 for and 10 against. Their solitary home defeat throughout the season, in all cup-ties and League games, was when Leeds sprang a surprise away back in September. Visitors tomorrow to Goodison are Chesterfield, now third in the table, too far behind to have any hopes of overtaking the leaders, but nevertheless a treat to Everton by reason of their strong defence. The Blues have got to win to keep in step with Sheffield United, who with a home game against Blackburn Rovers, look good for another victory. In the early part of the season Chesterfield fortified only five goals in their first twelve matches. Then came the sensational thirteenth game, in which they had six pushed past them by Stoke. Occasionally since then the definite has shown itself subject to human fragilities the same as any other, yet still has one of the smallest “goals against” total of all League clubs. The Derbyshire side shows many changes, since they put paid to Liverpool’s cup hopes last season. They seem to have discovered a promising centre forward in Swinscoe. Ottewell has just been demobed from the R.A.F and Roberts is a former prisoner of war, while this promises to be a stern tussels, and the stiffest of Everton’s remaining home games. I fancy the Blues will pull it off. Teams; Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick or Higgins, Fielding, Boyes. Chesterfield; Middleton; Watson (W.), Kidd; Goodfellow, Whitaker, Pringle; Sinclair, Hart, Swinscoe, Ottewell, Roberts.
Tomorrow’s collection at Goodison is in aid of St. John’s Ambulance Brigade, the first they have made for their own sole benefit since 1939. As you know members of the brigade are on duty at every match, and are ever ready to and their skilled aid to spectators in need. Here is a chance to show your appreciation.
Everton Res (v. Derby County, away)- Sagar; Curwen, Dugdale; Sweeney, Lindley, Davies; Rawlings, Grant, Higgins or Bell, Johnson, O’Neill
Everton “A” (v. Haydock, away); J. A. Jones; Hedley, Prescott; Hill, Falder, J.R. Dunroe, W. Owen, Elliott, S. Wright, J. Rothwell, Keenan.
LEAGUE RACE RIVALS’ VISIT TO EVERTON
April 5, 1956. The Evening Express
The tense race for the League North championship continues to dominate the sports field. The struggle between Everton and Sheffield United –both on the 50 points mark – at the head of the League North is as dramatic as it is thrilling. Everton lead by the barest fraction of a goal, but the United have a match in hand. However, the reversal of positions, is I think, in Everton’s favour. Coming home from Bradford on Wednesday evening the players said; “Well, now we have got in front we shall stay there.” That is the confidence of this 1946 Everton. They go out almost knowing they are going to win. We stopped for tea going to Yorkshire and the directors, Messrs, Ernest Green, W.R. (Dickie) Williams and Dick Searle, and Secretary-Manager Mr. Theo Kelly were treated to an impromptu concert by the players, organised by skipper Norman Greenhalgh. “This only a couple of hours before a vital match. When we resumed our journey Tommy Jones the Welsh captain, sitting with me, said;” Things like that win matches for us. Take it from me this match is won already. You cannot beat the team spirit of Everton – the old spirit of 1939 which won us the championship.” Tomorrow the Blues face Chesterfield, at Goodison Park, and their spirit and sheer ability will, I feel certain take them to their fourth successive win. Everton have lost only one out of the last 11 matches, and with hopes of Catterick and Wainwright back it should be another V Day. Chesterfield are third in the League, but without a real chance of overtaking the leaders, and they can be beaten if full use is made of the wingers against sound backs and one of the best pivots in the country – Whittaker, I anticipate another 40,000 gate for a game starting at three o’clock. Teams; Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes.
CHESTERFIELD AT EVERTON
April 6, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
By John Peel
Games in the Football League today promise to provide some capital struggles, particularly those where the leading clubs in the North and South sections are concerned. The championship race in both is of an interesting character. Chesterfield are the attraction on Merseyside and a big crowd is bound to be present in suite of the counter-attraction of racing at Aintree. Everton, who will be strengthened in attack by the return of Wainwright to inside right with Stevenson again on the wing, and the possibility of Catterick leading the attack and did make no mistake in retaining their hold on the league leadership and I am confident that they will overcome the Derbyshire side. Teams; Teams; Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, of Higgins, Fielding, Boyes. Chesterfield; Middleton; Watson (W.), Kidd; Goodfellow, Whitaker, Pringle; Sinclair, Hart, Swinscoe, Ottewell, Roberts.
JONES LEADS ATTACK
April 6, 1946. The Evening Express
Chesterfield at Goodison
Everton included Tommy Jones, their Welsh International centre-half, at centre-forward for today’s vital League match with Chesterfield at Goodison Park. This followed Catterick’s persistent injury, Thursday’s test having shown him still unfit. Wainwright returned to inside, Stevenson reverting to the wing. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Humphreys and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Wainwright, Jones (TG), Fielding and Boyes, forwards. Chesterfield; Middleton, goal; Watson (W.), and Kidd, backs; Goodfellow, Whitaker, and Pringle, half-backs; Sinclair, Hart, Swinscoe, Ottewell, and Roberts, forwards. Referee; Mr. S. Boardman (Manchester). Only the brilliance of Burnett prevented Chesterfield from taking the lead with the first move of the day. From a halfway line free kick Ottewell slipped the ball aside for Roberts to leap on with a magnificent cross shot, to which Burnett leapt to turn over the ball. Chesterfield were the more assertive in these early raids, although Humphreys, Watson and Bentham kept them out of shooting distance. Boyes wormed his way inside to slip Jones through, and Jones went on to lob the ball against the bar. As it rebounded he headed inches over. Everyone imagined that the whistle had gone for offside, but this was not so and Chesterfield thanked their lucky stars. Burnett dived back to prevent a rebound from Roberts crossing the line. From Sinclair’s corner the ball came back to Pringle, whose brilliant first time shot was flicked over the top by Burnett.
The quick tackling of Chesterfield prevented Everton from settling down to their usual combined work, but now Whitaker had to run far out to hold up Wainwright and a timely last minute tackle by Goodfellow prevented Fielding from opening the way for Jones. Play developed on cup-tie lines, with some of the strongest tackling I have seen for a long time. Swinscoe was going through when Humphreys brought him down a yard outside the penalty area; but the free kick was easily cleared. Away went Everton for Middleton to turn aside a low shot from Wainwright. Bentham and Wainwright-combined neatly to get Stevenson away, and from the centre Jones headed only inches by the far post. Twice Watson pulled Everton out of difficulties with timely tackles then Humphreys came away to put paid to a Sinclair threat.
BURNETT’S SAVES BROUGHT AN EVERTON VICTORY
April 8, 1946, The Liverpool Daily Post
By Ernest Edwards (Bee)
Everton 4, Chesterfield 0
(T.G. Jones 2, Boyes2, Attendance 40,000)
Everton, like Prince Regent, are tiring. Each match in April becomes a cup final test for Everton. To win over Chesterfield without the aid of a Mercer or Catterick is a performance. They were immeasurably superior to Everton in the opening half, and it was then that Burnett became “Rooseian” in his flighty runs. His leaps and his falls were of National standard, and he alone kept Chesterfield from taking a big margin lead before Everton had settled down to fluent movement. Burnett at one moment was found racing out far beyond his markings. It would be churlish to curb his enthusiasm as he had a grand innings, but one must warn him were forward dashes suggestive of petulance and the ball was not to be found in his keeping of his grip. Goalkeepers are not forgiven if they are marked absent when they have stretched too far upfield. I am merely warning Burnett, after giving him due praise. His goalkeeping made a 4-0 margin false to fact – for the second week in succession.
What Chesterfield Missed
Chesterfield, ten years ago, asked for a half-back. I named them Watson, of Everton, who was for sale at £500. Chesterfield were not sure he was the man they wanted. Watson came in the senior side through someone dropping out at the last moment. Watson played so well he was then priced at £3,000, and the club were not anxious to sell. What Chesterfield missed, Everton reclaimed. This Sphinx-like and unobtrusive half-back has developed his sense of attack by ape-ing the swerving Fielding. Watson you see, is not too old to learn. Developing a free kick drive that menaces goalkeepers, for the second week, he took the “dead-ball” and made it “live.” Middleton’s save was a tip-tap touch which edged it around the goalpost. Everton’s half-back trinity was composed of the “silent three” Bentham (playing delicious football) Watson (already named), and Humphreys (whose excellent timing, heading without fault, eye on the ball and a delivery-pass so uncommon to most centre half-backs). These three held Chesterfield after Burnett’s saves in the first half-hour. Everton might have panicked. They did not because Greenhalgh was outstanding. Fielding went through the game “on edge.” Trainer Cooke took from his boot a stud-layer, yet despite his limp, Fielding got the attack going by his swerving body, his rolling gait, his innocent threat to move one way when, of a surety, he would flow the other way –Fielding has a graceful action with a Donnachie wobbie, and no one excels him in his ability to carve an opening for his comrades.
“A Plague on Them”
A plague on those who cried “Get rid of the ball.” Had he heard them the joy of football living and Fielding would have gone from us. Wainwright was astute and more workmanlike, but both stars showed signs of the tired feeling that comes to all footballers in the last four weeks of the season. It is hard going, in both senses of the last word. Tom Jones brought his height and innate skill to bear upon the centre forward role. He got two goals, and Boyes got two. Chesterfield felt nothing would go right with them. Their pace and style of attack were praiseworthy and Everton could have been punished very severely if the inside forwards had taken prime chances. Thirty-eight years old Kidd. Ottewell (in the open) and Whittaker were best of a very lively side. . Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Humphreys and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Wainwright, Jones (TG), Fielding and Boyes, forwards. Chesterfield; Middleton, goal; Watson (W.), and Kidd, backs; Goodfellow, Whitaker, and Pringle, half-backs; Sinclair, Hart, Swinscoe, Ottewell, and Roberts, forwards. Referee; Mr. S. Boardman (Manchester).
At Goodison Park this evening kick-off 5.40. Everton play Tranmere Rovers in the replay of their Liverpool Senior Cup semi-final.
• Liverpool beat Stoke City 1-0, Done.
• Haydock 2, Everton “A” 2
BLUES BID FOR ANOTHER ‘DERBY’
April 8, 1946. The Evening Express
Everton set out this evening to ensure that we have another Merseyside “Derby” match before the curtain is rung down on season 1945-46. If the Blues defeat Tranmere Rovers at Goodison Park in the second “leg” of the Liverpool Senior Cup at 5.45 pm, they will qualify to meet Liverpool once again in the final. The match is going to be something of a reunion for first team followers will see, for the first time for many a day, the returned fighting men Ted Sagar, and Maurice Lindley. It will be nice to say officially. “Hello, again” to these lads, and also to see the latest Tranmere star in action -16-year-old. Wheeler at right half I am assured that Wheeler was an immense success when making his debut last Saturday. Everton gave Jackson and Stevenson a chance to recover from their injuries and as Wainwright is not available, young Johnson comes in at his real position –inside right. I did not share the surprise of some Everton followers when they learned that Tommy Jones was to lead the forwards against Chesterfield, for such a move is typical of Secretary-Manager Mr. Theo Kelly, and Tommy gets another run in the position tonight. Jones as a centre-forward may not be perfection in general leadership and quick use of the short ball, but against Chesterfield he was eventually a success. Even if Jones did not do some of the important things correctly, he did the vital things well, so that we saw him having a hand in the two Boyes goals and scoring two himself to give the Blues a 4-0 win which furthers their goals average in the title race with Sheffield United. Yes, Jones played a valuable part in this all important victory, and I shall watch him again with keen interest this evening when the teams will be; Everton; Sagar; Curwen, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Lindley, Watson; Rawlings, Johnson, Tommy Jones, Fielding, Boyes. Tranmere Rovers; Read; Hodgson, Hornby; Wheeler, Bell, Williamson, Harlock, Rosenthal, Atkinson, Bridges, Jones (TB).
Congratulations to Joe Mercer of the Blues on again being selected to captain England against Scotland at Hampden Park on Saturday. It speaks volumes for Joe, that where as he is a club right back he plays on the left for his country.
April 8, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Everton and Tranmere Rovers meet again at Goodison Park, this evening (5.45) in their second Liverpool Senior Cup semi-final tussle. The first “leg” also played at Goodison resulted in a 3-3 draw, after a very fine game, and there is no reason to suppose that tonight’s encounter will not produce just as good a struggle. Obviously Tranmere will be trying 100 per cent to get the better of their aristocratic neightbours. The winners meet Liverpool in the final date to be arrange later. This game will give Everton supporters a chance to weigh up the forms of three of the Blues reserve players, in Maurice Lindley, just back from Army service abroad, including hospital work in Germany. Curwen the second string right full back; and Johnson, who has had two senior outings before this season. Lindley we saw a number of times during the early war years. Tall well-built and talented, he may soon be knocking at the door of promotion. Everton need have no worries about the centre half position. Few clubs are so well supplied in this vital spot. It will be good to see Ted Sagar in action again, and Tommy Jones carries on as leader of the attack. Everton; Sagar; Curwen, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Lindley, Watson; Rawlings, Johnson, Tommy Jones, Fielding, Boyes. Tranmere Rovers; Read; Hodgson, Hornby; Wheeler, Bell, Williamson, Harlock, Rosenthal, Atkinson, Bridges, Jones (TB).
Failed To Stay
Sheffield United continue to produce a Botanic for each Everton Oliver. Next Saturday’s game between the Blues and Chesterfield at Chesterfield, may decide the fate of Everton, who will find the Derbyshire side a hard one to beat on their own ground. Saturday’s 4-0 victory for the Blues at Goodison did scant justice to the visitors. Chesterfield were the better side in the first half, and had they taken the lead they so thoroughly deserved the final outcome might have been much different. That they didn’t was due to the brilliant goalkeeping of Burnett’s and the solidity of Humphreys, plus a good work by Greenhalgh and a very bad miss by a Swinscoe who had the easiest chance of the day. Bar one brief spell Everton never settled in the first “45” to their normal sweet-running combination. Stevenson, who was not thoroughly fit and was a doubtful starter almost to the last minute was not his usual shinning self, and Tommy Jones is not built for permanency at centre forward. He had a head and a foot in each of Boyes’s goals and got two himself –one a bit “jammy” in that he was lucky to get a second chance from Wainwright’s pulled-back dead-line pass –and that was not a bad day’s return, but Tommy is obviously out of his element and too gentle for the leadership. Once Everton had got their second goal, Chesterfield seemed to fall to pieces. An injury to Pringle and consequent reshuffling of threw positions didn’t help them, and in the end they were soundly beaten. Sparkling stars for Everton were Humphreys who gets better every game and is now adding polish to his performances. Burnett whose alliance are agility and solidity despite occasions, lapses when he runs out; and of course those dissimilar “twins” Fielding and Wainwright with Watson. Greenhalgh, Bentham, and Boyes taking praise also for solid displays. Chesterfield have discovered a promising centre-forward in Swinscoe who might have had a gale day against a less capable pivot than Humphreys. Ottewell was brilliant and a grand marksman and along with Roberts made a sparkling wins in the first half. Goodfellow did not belle his name but Whittaker was patchy and the defence, as a whole, wilted under Everton’s pressure in the last half hour. There was a very sparse attendance of Goodison directors. Several were “on business” elsewhere.
EVERTON DRAW WITH TRANMERE
April 9, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 2, Tranmere Rovers 2
A Great Finish
The return Liverpool Senior Cup semi-final between Everton and Tranmere at Goodison Park last night provided an excellent game and a most exciting finish. With less than a quarter-f-=an-hour to go Tranmere were leading by two goals to nil, and, although Everton had been pressing hotly for a long time, it looked odds-on that the visitors, whose defence was with-standing the onslaught very firmly, would weather the storm. Then came a spot of bad luck for Tranmere in the award of a penalty for hands against Wheeler. It seemed to me that he was more sinned against than sinning, and that he could hardly have got out of the way of Bentham’s shot had he tried to, but after consulting a linesman, the referee pointed to the spot. Read made two brilliant saves from Boyes’s penalty effort, but the ball rebounded to Rawlings and the Tranmere goalkeeper, who had fallen to the ground, could not recover in time to prevent the winger scoring. Everton redoubled their efforts until there was practically only one team in it. Three minutes from time Elliott got the equaliser with a shot which Read partially saved but the ball slipped out of his grasp and trickled over the line. It was a great finish to an entertaining game which attracted 5,632 spectators, and Everton can regard themselves as a trifle fortunate to force a replay. Rosenthal put Tranmere in front after six minutes with a fine shot on the half-turn, and T.B. Jones got the second just before the half-hour. Star of the match was, Wheeler, Tranmere’s 17-years-old right half, Bell and Hodgson also did well. Read was sound in goal, Rosenthal was the best of the front line. Of the home side, Bentham, Boyes, and Watson took chief honours. Lindley shaped well considering his long absence, but Elliott and Johnson were upset by injuries. A decision regarding the replay will be made later. It may take place next Monday evening. Everton; Sagar, goal; Curwen and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Lindley, and Watson, half-backs; Rawlings, Elliott, Jones (TG), Johnson and Boyes, forwards. Tranmere Rovers; Read, goal; Hodgson and Hornby, back’s Wheeler, Bell, and Williamson, half-backs; Harlock, Rosenthal, Atkinson, Bridges, and Jones (TB), forwards. Referee- Mr. E. S. Medlicott (Wirral). * Sheffield United beat Stoke City 3-0 at Stoke.
NO. 2 AGAIN
April 9, 1946. The Evening Express
Everton’s Lead of the Football league North lasted only five days. Sheffield United regained first position last night when they defeated Stoke City 3-0 at Stoke and so once more have a two points lead on level games. The Blues still await that vital slip by the United which can give them the title. Everton were in luck’s way at Goodison Park last night when the second “leg” of the Liverpool senior Cup semi-final with Tranmere Rovers ended as did the first in a draw. This time it was 2-2, and as bad light prevented extra time, we shall have to have a third meeting –not yet fixed – in order to find who shall meet Liverpool in the final. Up to now I would say, with emphasis, that the Rovers have gained a “points” lead. For an hour last night they were the better side finding their men more accurately and having a variety in tactics rarely seen in Everton. Rosenthal and Benny Jones gave the Rovers an interval lead, and justice would have been served had they held it. Then Bentham became an inspiring force to Everton and in 77 minutes there was a penalty award against the reliable Bell, one of the stars of the game. Read made a brilliant full length save off Boyes’ shot, but unfortunately for him he was winded, and the ball went out to Rawlings who hooked it into the net. That goal set the game alight, and with Everton doing all the attacking the excitement for nearly 8,000 spectators was keyed up. With three minutes to go Tommy Jones headed the ball across for Elliott to take a first time shot, and tie it all up again. Mr. Bob Trueman, chairman of the Rovers, had warned me to watch John wheeler, the 17-year-old right half. I did, and was delighted with what I saw. Wheeler has everything while I was deeply impressed –again by the work of Bell, Hodgson, Read, Hornby, Benny Jones and Rosenthal. As a matter of fact there was not a single weak spot in the Tranmere side which had an average ago of under 21, and which cost £75 to build –a £25 donation for Atkinson and for remaining signing-on fees. Tranmere have reason to feel proud. It was only the power of Everton’s storm tactics which enabled the Blues to pull through. Apart from Bentham, Watson, Boyes, Greenhalgh and Lindley, the Blues were not a good side.
A STIFF TEST
April 17, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Everton’s game with Chesterfield at Chesterfield will be one of the most vital in their long struggle to overtake Sheffield United, and the hardest they have to face in their remaining engagements. Everton’s victory against the Derbyshire side at Goodison last week was not as convincing as the score suggested. There were long spells when the visitors were as good as their masters and though Everton won well in the end, the disparity between the sides was never very great until injuries upset the visitors late on. Everton will have to fight hard tomorrow, for Chesterfield give little away on their own ground. Only thirteen goals have been scored against them there in seventeen games –though the percentage of draws is high. A draw however will not do this time, though it would be a satisfactory performance under ordinary circumstances. Nothing less than victory will keep Everton in the running for the championship. They have still a leeway of two points to make up, and must hoist a winning flag each time in order to slip ahead if Sheffield falter. Happily the team spirit and confidence of the Blues was never higher, not even in the pre-war championship days, than it is at the moment. That means a lot, Catterick’s return is welcome for Higgins is not yet ripe and Tommy Jones is no centre-forward, though useful in an emergency. Catterick may just tip the scales for victory, and though it will be a tense struggle, I am hopeful that Everton’s winning sequence may continue. Chesterfield; Middleton; Watson (W.), Kidd; Gellowfellow, Whitaker, Hart; Sinclair, Ottewell, Swinscoe, Simpson, Roberts. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes
Everton Reserves (v Derby County Reserves at Goodison); Sagar; Curwen, Purvis; Sweeney, Lindley, Davies; Arthur, Grant, R. Barker, Elliott, Higgins.
IT’S A “MUST”
April 12, 1946. The Evening Express
So far as Everton are concerned, their job at Chesterfield is a “must.” To outstay Sheffield United the Blues must win every point, for they are two points behind and to drop another would make their chance merely outside. My view is that Chesterfield can be beaten again for the Blues’ seventh “double,” and if Catterick is fir enough to resume the prospects will be even brighter for there are few better leaders today than Harry. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes.
LATE EVERTON GOAL
April 15, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
Chesterfield 1, Everton 1
Everton had a very close call against Chesterfield at Chesterfield, and though on the territorial balance of play they were perhaps fortunate to draw they certainly deserved some reward for their fighting rally in the last fifteen minutes. Up to that stage Chesterfield has been the better side and only Everton’s cast-iron defence kept the score down to a single goal, scored by Swinscoe with as surprised shot after twenty-four minutes. For fully four-fifths of the first half Everton were penned in their own quarters by the weight and determination of Chesterfield’s onslaughts. The visitors raid were not only few and far between, but were unproductive of any shots of note. Middleton having an easy passenger. Chesterfield set up such a hot pace that one sensed the possibility of a fade-but before the game had run its full course, and so it turned out.
Right up to the middle of the second half Chesterfield maintained their superiority, though not in so pronounced a fashion; then they collapsed with startling suddenness at the most vital period. The collapse started when the Everton wing halves, hitherto so heavily engaged in defence that they had little chance to co-operate with their forwards, suddenly sprang to attack, and found that the Chesterfield rearguard was vulnerable. From then on to the finish it was nearly all Everton; after Stevenson had equalised five minutes before the end with a brilliant “placed” shot from Bentham’s pass. Chesterfield were hard put to stave off defeat. Had there been another few minutes to go Everton would almost certainly have won, for they were well on top. Apart from the last quarter of an hour, Everton were only a shadow of their normal saves. An injury to Fielding, necessitating his move to outside left, upset the front line, but apart from that the attack rarely functioned smoothly or convincingly; the main honours went to defenders. This evening, at Prenton Park, Everton play Tranmere Rovers in the second replay of the semi-final of the Liverpool Senior Cup, Kick-off 6.45. Chesterfield; Middleton, goal; Watson (W.) and Kidd, backs; Goodfellow, Whitaker and Hart, half-backs; Sinclair, Ottewell, Swinscoe, Simpson and Roberts, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Humphreys, and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding and Boyes, forwards.
• Liverpool beat Stoke City 4-1, Priday (2), Fagan, Balmer, for Liverpool and Kirton for Stoke, Ramsden penalty kick was saved by Sidlow.
• Scotland beat England 1-0 at Hampden Park, Mercer captain England.
• Sheffield United drew at Blackburn
EVERTON-TRANMERE DUEL AGAIN
April 15, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Everton and Tranmere Rovers meet in the semi-final of the Liverpool Senior Cup at Prenton Park this evening (6.45), their third tussle in this competition. Everton were the first to admit they were a trifle fortunate last week to force a replay, for Tranmere were the better side in a game which produced plenty of entertaining football and more thrills than many a League encounter. I don’t get many opportunities to see Tranmere so my comparison may not be right, yet they’ve always given me the impression that they do better at Goodison than at home. They seem to revel in the trueness of the pitch and the fact that they are not cramped on the touchlines. Certainly, nobody would have taken them for a Third Division side last week. They have a solid defence, with stars of the future in Hodgson. Wheeler, and Williamson, and with a little more finishing power in the front line they may surprise Everton again. The kick-off has been made as late as possible to enable the home team’s followers to be there in full strength. Everton will not decide on their side until just before the start. In view of their heavy holiday programme it may have a bigger sprinkling of reserves, but that will not unduly reduce the attractiveness of their visit, for any Everton side is a magnet. Tranmere Rovers; Reid; Hodgson, Hornby; Wheeler, Bell, Williamson; Harlock, Rosenthal, Atkinson, Bridges, Jones.
Not Everton’s Best
The Scots did it after all, and Glasgow on a Saturday night really belonged to them once more. It was a close thing, but the Scots won’t be over-critical, for they were very pessimistic over their chances, and a win is good, no matter how narrow or how late on it comes. Mercer’s injury is a blow, though Everton are fortunate in having Bentham to fill the gap, and the way Stan played at Chesterfield – and has been playing for a long time –they need have no anxiety. The Blues (who played in white owing to the colour clash) nearly came a cropper, against the strong and virile Derbyshire side, and only a great goal by Stevenson five minutes form the end saved them a point. For 75 minutes Chesterfield were the better side. They threw everything they had bar the stands into the fray, and for long periods had Everton where they wanted them –penned up in their own half, and unable to produce a single attacking move in the true Everton tradition. Everton were glad to keep their deficit down to one goal, a lucky-dip by Stevenson, and had to fight tooth and nail to do it. An injury to Fielding half way through the first half robbed him of his usual effectiveness (he played the whole of the second portion as a passenger at outside left). Wainwright failed to strike his best, and altogether the attack was almost unrecognisable compared with recent performances. During this testing period the visiting defence took all the medals that were going. In singling out Burnett for special mention, I must stress that the rest of the defenders did their stuff just as valiantly, but Burnett’s spectacular work was the highlight of the afternoon. We saw a partial glimpse of something nearer the real Everton in the last fifteen minutes, yet, even then it was not the hard-hitting and skilful attack of old Stevenson’s goal a beauty, put the sides level, and in the end Chesterfield hammered almost as hard as Everton had been earlier, were glad to hang on to a draw. Chairman Bill Gibbins and Mr. Fred Lake were the only directors to make the trip. Others had business “assignments,” for McIhatton is not the only player Everton have in mind to make doubly sure for next season, and further news may be forthcoming soon.
Everton “battle” Begins
Following the nomination of Major Jack Sharp for the Everton board, for which he will stand along with Mr. Ernest Green and Dr. Baxter (two) of the three retiring directors, the first shots in the coming “battle” for the directorate have been fired to-day. These take the shape of a circular to shareholders by Mr. W.C. Cuff president of the Football League, and another by the committee of the Shareholders Association.
ALEX DID IT
April 15, 1946. The Evening Express
Alex Stevenson, the Irish international, kept fully alive Everton’s championship hopes by equalising with only five minutes to go at Chesterfield, where the Blues had one of their hardest battles of the season. Apparently Chesterfield had a set plan to blot out Wainwright and Fielding, and it succeeded to the point that it forced the Blues to concentrate mainly on defence. Well, that is the type of job the Goodison lads can tackle well, and Burnett, Humphreys, Jackson and Greenhalgh rose to the occasions splendidly, with Bentham and Watson “killing” many attacks in midfield. Swinscoe gave Chesterfield the lead midway through the first half, but excellent team work held them, and with Everton staying better a point was snatched. So Everton have negotiated the hardest of their remaining fixtures, and say “thank you” to Blackburn for holding the Blades.
April 16, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
No Decision after two Replays
Tranmere Rovers 3, Everton 3
The third meeting of Tranmere Rovers and Everton in the semi-final of the Liverpool Senior Cup ended in yet another draw, the game at Prenton Park last night resulting in six goals being equally shared. The crowd of more than 10,000 was provided with a thrilling tussle and on the general run of the play the Rovers were distinctly unfortunate not to win. Immediately after obtaining a leading goal, eight minutes after the start, Hodgson injured his leg and for the remainder of the game had to hobbie at outside right. Then, after the resumption, at a time when the home side were leading 3-2, Rosenthal fell awkwardly and badly sprained his wrist. He returned after quarter of an hour’s absence but was badly handicapped. Everton, however, also suffering misfortune in the second half, for Davies received the full force of a ball in his face and he finished the game at outside left. For three parts of the time the Rovers were definitely the superior side for they showed not only the greater control of the lively ball but their movement were better conceived. All too frequently the visitors’ play was aimless and it was not until the final quarter of an hour that they were in the ascendary and they might have snatched a winning goal late on, Davies hitting the bar with Read out of goal. Sagar was the buzzier keeper and made many fine saves, and Read also impressed in goal for the Rovers. The marksmen and the order of the goals were Allidis (8 minutes), Owen (18), Bridges (30); R.C. Bell (49), Atkinson (52), R.C. Bell (84). Teams; Tranmere Rovers; Read; Hodgson and Hornby, backs; Wheeler, Bell (H.), and Williamson, half-backs; Alldis, Rosenthal, Atkinson, Bridges, Jones (TB), forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Curwen and Purvis, backs; Sweeney, Lindley and Davies, half-backs; Arthur, Grant, Bell (RC), Elliott, and Owen. Referee; Mr. J. Brown, Ormskirk.
EVERTON DRAW AGAIN
April 16, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Three times Everton doggedly fought back to level matters, getting the final equaliser ten minutes from the end. The pace was a cracker all though. At half-time I felt sure neither side could stick it at that rate to the end, but both proved me wrong. Had they been playing for the F.A. Cup tie, the Town Hall clock, and a dozen Wembley tickets, neither could have put any more into their work. I though Tranmere again a trifle unlucky though it would have been an injustice had Everton lost. The Rovers fine show was all the more praiseworthy considering that Hodgson was little more than a passenger for 85 minutes on the right wing, Allidis swopping places with him and earning top marks as an emergency back. Davis (Everton) was also a partial passenger late on. When we get such a display at the at the tall end of the season it seems invidious to mention individuals. All deserved thanks but particularly on the home side. Read for a grand goalkeeping exhibition. Rosenthal for his all round excellence and his pluck in resuming after-injury-and the three half backs for heroic work in every phase of the game. Everton’s half back one also stood out and in the attack Grant got through two men’s work without having the best of luck with his shooting. There was argument about Tranmere’s third goal, some spectators thinking that when Hodgson played his free kick a second time as it came back off the post Everton should have had one in return. Ted Sagar told me afterwards that he just got his fingers to the ball before it hit the post. So the referee was right. Hodgson’s injury is likely to keep him out of the team for a least a fortnight. Rosenthal is being posted tomorrow to Kent.
Mr. W.C. Gibbins, chairman of Everton, stated today that the majority group of directors of the club will reply fully to all shareholders, in the course of the next few days, regarding the statements and allegations contained in the circular letter sent out by Mr. Cuff and the Shafeholders’ Association.
Joe Mercer, England’s captain, has had an X-ray examination following his Hampton injury. Earlier there was fear of cartilage complication, but happily this is now regarded as remote, and the trouble is believed to be a pulled ligament. The X-ray is mainly a case of making doubly sure.
April 17, 1945. The Evening Express
Everton are confident that Harry Catterick, their far goal-scoring centre-forward will be back to lead the attack against Barnsley at Oakwell on Good Friday, where they expect a record gate. Secretary Manager Mr. Theo Kelly says that Mercer had a knee injury and so Stan Bentham will continue at right half for this game. The formation of the team to meet Barnsley at Goodison Park on Saturday naturally depends on happenings at Oakwell. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes.
TESTING TIME FOR EVERTON
April 18, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Easter is anything but a holiday for professional footballers. Three games in four days is a stiff task for fully trained players, never mind those who are combining another job with their football task, and for that reason we may get some queer results over the holiday. By Monday evening we shall probably have the position clarified the championship of the League North. Two of Everton’s three games are at home that with Barnsley on the Monday being the last home League game of the season though they have a match at Goodison against a combined Lancashire eleven on May 11. In aid of the Lancashire County Cricket Club reconstruction fund. The Blue’s visit to Barnsley tomorrow is a stiff hurdle. Whether they win the championship or not, Everton have given Sheffield United, a rare run for their money, and kept the Blades on tenterhook’s all the time. Sheffield also have two of their three holiday games at home, against Manchester City and Bradford, with an away engagement against the latter to complete the programme. Everton’s team against Barnsley is strengthened by the return of Catterick. The composition of the eleven for the following matches depends on how the players emerge from the Barnsley tussle.
Joe Mercer’s Hampden Park injury has unfortunately turned out to be more serious than anticipated, and, following a specialist’s examination, he is to have an operation for the removal of the injured cartilage.
April 18, 1946. The Evening Express
Friday, Barnsley v. Everton
Everton v. Burnley (at Goodison Park 3.0 pm)
Everton v Barnsley (Goodison Park 3.0 pm)
Everton should make no mistakes in their home matches with Burnley and Barnsley although both represented dangerous opposition. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes
EVERTON FAIL AT BARNSLEY
April 20, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
Barnsley 2, Everton 0
To Barnsley fell the distinction of being the first side to defeat Everton since January 12, a defeat, which practically extinguished their hopes of overhauling Sheffield United in the championship race. Though Barnsley in the long run were worthy of victory they only achieved it by two rather fortunate goals; prior to which it was anybody’s game. The first of these, at the 50th minute came straight from a hot Everton attack on the home goal. Burkinshaw cleared the danger with a long high punt, which Humphreys blinded by the sun, lost sight of, in attempting to return it and Robledo dashed through like a flash to ram the ball into the net. Everton protested strongly against the second goal, also scored by Robledo on the ground that Bennett, who was well offside had interfered with play. The referee, however, in spite of insistent appeals refused to consult the linesmen. Up to this point there had been little to choose between the sides. Afterwards, however, the home side got well on top, and Everton’s defence was fully extended in preventing them forming further ahead. Barnsley’s busting tactics and speedy tackling upset Everton, who were never allowed time to settle on the ball or roam to work it. Fielding was Everton’s best forward. Kelly and Robledo were the star forwards on the winning side, with Logan and Pallister outstanding in defence. Barnsley; Rymer, goal; Cunningham and Pallister, backs; Logan, Burkinshaw, and Asquith, half-backs; Smith, Grey, Robledo, Bennett, Kelly, forwards. Everton, Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Humphreys and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding and Boyes, forwards. Referee; Mr. C. Fletcher (Davenham).
Burnley’s visit to Goodison Park to engage Everton is the main attraction on Merseyside today. The Turf Moor eleven are strong fore and aft, and the home attack well have to produce more sting into their finishing if they are to succeed. Everton’s team will probably be the same that did duty at Barnsley, namely Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes.
• Liverpool beat Grimsby 2-0, Fagan, Nieuwenhuys.
• Bradford 0, Sheffield United 4
EVERTON V BURNLEY
April 20, 1946. The Evening Express
Not until the teams were ready to go on the field did Burnley know the constitution of their 11 for the match against Everton at Goodison Park today, because Burns missed the motor coach. He, however, followed on after the party, and reached the ground after Burnley had decided to play Loughan. The Burns made a hurried change, so Loughan stood down. Burnett’s damaged finger, received at Barnsley, had improved, and he was able to play, while Catteick led the attack. Joe Mercer said that he is going to have his cartilage operation as quickly as possible to ensure that he is fit for next season’s opening. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Humphreys, and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding and Boyes, forwards. Burnley; Strong, goal; Woodruff, and Mather, backs; Budman, Johnson, and Bray, half-backs; Chew, Haigh, Harrison, Burn, and Johnson, forwards. Referee; Mr. G. Twist (West Houghton). We had an opening giving us the best of football artistry, with both teams, adopting the short pass cleverly, and with Boyes a lively creative unit. When Haigh and Chew threatened Greenhalgh came over with a grand intervention. Wainwright and then Fielding were too hard as they tried to make the through pass a winner. Fielding’s failure to trap the ball on the edge of his own penalty area gave Chew a golden opening, with only Burnett to beat, but although he shot accurately at the top far corner Burnett flung himself across to make an excellent save. Following the corner, a lob shot gave Burnett some trouble, so he punched it over. After Strong had held a centre from Boyes, Johnson willingly conceded a corner when Fielding pulled the ball back from the goal line.
Watson went through enterprisingly with a shot which brought Strong to his knees and then Strong had to run out after Catterick had robbed Woodrff. Burnley played excellent combination football of the real Goodison vintage, and Haigh went through to hit the side netting. Jackson ran well into enemy territory past three men to give Stevenson the right of way, and when the ball came back fast along the slippery turf it went beyond Wainwright, but Fielding dashed in with a shot which swung into the crowd. Burnett saved an awkward lob from Budman before going down to the first timer from Crew, as Burnley continued to give as much as they took and in a delightful way. Burnett was much busier than Strong and he went full length to save from Harrison. Stevenson crossed a lovely centre which Boyes took on the volley, only to see the ball pass the wrong side of the post.
BURNLEY CAUGHT IN THE EVERTON WEB
April 22, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
By Ernest Edwards (Bee)
Everton 2, Burnley 0
Everton keep the League lamp flickering, aided by Manchester City’s victory over Sheffield United. During the game at Goodison Park on Saturday a friend advised me Sheffield (top of the league ladder) were two goals down –“Tell the Everton players; it will encourage them.” So the good news was announced to the team that was facing heavy weather owing to Burnley’s capacity for slick, confident, smooth-working attacks. Burnett for the third home game in succession, was secure when all else had failed. Shots fired towards him. He stretched his big frame to the “roof” of the goal. Turning the ball high over or away at a tangent he had prevented a three-goal deficit. Everton showed further signs of the stress of the season but, as in the last two games, they “won by a margin” and people went home saying” Good recovery,” for “Burnley outplayed them in the first half.” Blend those two statements and there is left the memory of Burnley softening after half-time.
Best Day Recalled
Their second half display showed them worm down by the Everton method of keeping the ball low and working it rule-by-rule, from back to half-back, thence to the forward line. Burnley recaptured some of the glory that once was theirs, when a Freeman led them when Boyle upheld them at centre-half, and when a Dawson was in goal. They did their pretty colours of chocolate and blue proud. Yet they were worn down by persistent, relentless attackers. Let us survey the winners’ attack; Boyes flippantly floating from wing to wing; Fielding, whose every shuffle of foot, on twirl of body sent defenders on the wrong track, Fielding who has taught the spectator to hold his peace instead of chanting “Get rid of the ball,” Fielding who sets the seed of a goal by drawing rivals to his side and then slipping eel-like out of their path; Catterick, striving and struggling against a long-legged, tall pivot named Johnson; Wainwright all right and bright at inside right, if not so dominant as earlier in the season; and finally veteran Stevenson, fluttering his feet over the ball, hinting at a movement and producing the one that was not expected. Five forwards, each in his own niche a personality, gladdening the heart of the onlooker. It was sad that the best half-back on the field, Watson made a genteel place shot from a penalty kick award. It was sad too to think that the giver of the “spot-prize,” Woodruff, who had no superior at full back, had conceded this penalty kick. A second penalty kick came to Everton (Catterick scored a lead added by Boyes) and this time the captain, Greenhalgh, took his forward part in making a goal.
According to the Book
Many will argue against the referee’s award because Fielding, running through in a sinuous style, was not in touch with the ball at the moment he was obstructed. But from my reading of the 1939 rule on obstruction is that the defender, by body-contact, had obstructed his rival and a penalty kick was the only decision. It was a kindly margin Everton obtained in view of the excellence of Burnley’s side in every department for half the game. Brought under the practical eyes of Manager Cliff Britton Britton and Jasper Kerr- both former Everton players – this Burnley side did sufficient to make their future look gay and bright. The essence of their early work was practicability. They did more with one quick pass than Everton did in four moves. They were compelling progressive, and sure in the length of their passes. As they had a centre-forward on the wing, a B.A.O.R signing at centre and four or five reserves, their display must have given great heart to their officials, as it did to the Everton crowd. It was good to be present at such a feast of football finesse and finery without fury. It is said there are no good teams today. We saw two answers to that carnard. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Humphreys and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding and Boyes, forwards. Burnely; Strong, goal; Woodruff and Mather, backs; Rudman, Johnson and Bray, half-backs; Chew, Haigh, Harrison, Burns, and Jackson, forwards. Attendance 30,000, receipts £3,000.
• Liverpool drew 1-1, Burke, for Liverpool and Buchan (Penalty) for Blackpool.
• Everton Reserves drew 0-0 at Burnley
April 22, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Everton have notified eight of their existing professional staff that it is not the club’s intention to retain their services for next season, and that they will, accordingly, figure on the “open to transfer” list. The players concerned are R. Bell, S. Rawlings, J.N. Cunliffe, D. Trentham, W. Lowe, A. Owen, M. Hill, and Dalgleish. The best known of course, is Bob Bell, who joined Everton from Tranmere Rovers in March, 1936, but has been unfortunate in having to play second fiddle to Dean, Lawton, and Catterick, during most of his play at Goodison, though he has done the club good service in the Central League side. Trentham, of whom we have seen practically nothing during the war years, came to Everton also in 1936, from Mickle Trafford F.C., in Shropshire. Cunliffe is the oldest servant of the club among the list, having joined Goodison away back in 1930. He also has been numbered among the absentees for several seasons. Syd Rawlings has the shortest service at Goodison, having been signed from Millwall only six months ago, though he had a couple of seasons as a guest before that. Owen (ex-Tranmere) has also been at Goodison only a few months. Owen and Dalgleish are being given free transfers.
Back With Outside Chance
Just when it looked s though Everton’s championship hopes had completely gone west along comes the first crack for over three months in Sheffield United’s concerning progress and once more the Blues are back with an outside chance. True, it is slender and much depends on the outcome of today’s games. As I write, Everton are two points behind with three games to play, with Sheffield holding the advantage in goal average. Against Burnley the Blues once more were not completely convincing and though in the end they ran the visitors off their feet. Burnley might have matched a draw until Greenhalgh penalty goal snuffed out their chances one minute from the final whistle. In the first half it was the visiting side who looked more like championship challengers. They played grand football, and only three magnificent saves by Burnett, who is in international class these days prevented them being in a commanding position at the interval. In the second half the position were reversed for with Burnley’s inside forwards fading right out of the visitors were thrown back mainly on the defence, and Everton’s attack, hitherto well held started to get Burnley constantly on one leg with their accurate close passing. If only there had been more finality about the Blues advances, instead of rather excessive elaboration the outcome would have been assured much earlier. While they can do no more than win, there was yet something about the manner of victory which suggested that Everton are doing just a trifle stale, which is not surprising considering the intensity of the fight they have put up to overhaul the leaders. The defence still acquits itself well with Greenhalgh doing great work as captain, but the front line is not quite the impressive department it was Stevenson is not happily cast for the role of outside right and Boyes was not his usual dominating self against Woodruff who was unlucky to be the medium of two penalties after his otherwise fine display. Everton’s best were Burnett, Greenhalgh, Humphreys, the wing halves, and Fielding. The latter’s ball distribution was brilliant even though some passes went astray –a fault which was marked up against rather a lot of the home players in the first half –and Wainwright was always ready to nip in with a quick shot. Burnley looked as though they have spotted a winner in Harrison, a centre forward who has “dropped from the skies” after service with the B.A.O.R team. Always in the limelight in the first half, he suffered from lack of support afterwards. Johnson is another of much promise, and Chew and Burns were always dangerous. Burnley, who have yet to play Everton and Sheffield United at home, may hold the key to the championship riddle.
George Burnett, Everton’s brilliant goalkeeper, who is a fitter by trade, has had two attractive offers to take up work overseas. One invitation is to join a friend in business in America, and the other comes from relatives in Australia. I hope the pull of soccer is strong enough to keep him here. Five years hence will be time enough to think of a move.
Stan Bentham is repairing for the future. He is going into partnership in an Earlestown business.
Wally Boyes casting an eye Sheffield way, with a like ambition.
April 22, 1946. The Evening Express
It took Everton a long time to gain the mastery over a brilliant Burnley at Goodison Park on Saturday, but their second half display entitled them to the 2-0 won a time when rivals, Sheffield United, were going down at home 3-2 to Manchester City. So there is that old two points gap between the leaders with only two games to play after today’s tussle. It needs another United slip and a 100 per cent. Everton return for the Blues to get there. The match with Burnley increased Everton’s indebtedness to George Burnett, their young goalkeeper, who, on this season’s showing, has no superior in the land, and I do not except Frank Swift. This was George’s third “blinder” in succession, and I am not taking into account that wonder save off Roberts in the first minute of the match here with Chesterfield. Burnett ready, was the man who set Everton on the road to victory over Burnley, for he stood in the breach –ably backed, let us not forget, by Greenhalgh. Jackson and Humphreys – when Burnely gave Everton lessons in football progression early on. In the first half Burnely looked the title contenders not Everton. Everton took oh so long to accustom themselves to a quick-moving ball on wet turf, but once the ground “sogged” a little, giving that required “hold.” Everton came into their own and continually battered a Burnley whose confidence was shattered when Harry Catterick –but quite his confident self after injury but still excellent –gave them the lead in 48 minutes. Everton should have clinched it with a penalty when Woodruff handled but Watson trying to steal a march on Strong, mis-hit his shot, and Strong saved easily. That gave Burnley, heart, and Harrison was put clean through for what looked like a certain equaliser. Burnett however, again rose to the occasion risking yet further injury to smother the ball. When Everton were awarded another penalty by on-the-spot, referee, Mr. George Twist, who makes control look so easy, skipper Norman Greenhalgh decided here was a job he could do and brushing everyone aside he made no mistake. I congratulate Manager Mr. Cliff Britton on presenting a really excellent Burnley side, and Chairman Mr. Tom Clegg and company on selecting a manager who has built from the right spot –the half-back line. Johnson and Bray are discoveries while Burns, the inside left, who missed the motor-coach, but who travelled on latter was masterly forward. Outstanding player on the field apart from Burnett, was Greenhalgh, who gave the perfect exhibition with partner Jackson not far behind. Humphreys’ interception was uncanny and while Bentham and Watson have been more exact in passing their defensive work was fine. Despite occasional wanderings by Boyes, the left flank of attack was a joy to watch with Fielding quite the best forward for Wainwright lost control rather too easily. Stevenson I rated good, and Catterick is surely coming to hand again in a fine side always a treat to watch. Keep going Everton.
SHOCK FOR EVERTON
April 23, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 0, Barnsley 4
In the old days, when Barnsley used to upset all pre-conceived notions of form in the F.A. Cup, they earned the title of “Battling Barnsley,” a name which was not entirely complimentary, for it meant that they would not let the other fellows play football. They have progressed since then, as they showed at Goodison yesterday, when they won strictly on football merits, though some of the old fighting spirit mainly in their defence, was still evident. They were the only side to take four points from Everton this season and the first to win at Goodsion Park since Leeds United won there last September. In trying to keep up with Sheffield United, every game recently has been a cup-tie strain for Everton; every side has been out to lower their colours. Barnsley were always going to meet the ball, whereas Everton were too often, waiting for it. They took up position much better than Everton, and in defence, so adequately did they cover one another that there always seemed three Barnsley men to every Everton player. Gray scored in the first half and Kelly Grey and Robledo in the second half. Attendance 45,000. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Humphreys, and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, and Boyes, forwards. Barnsley; Rymer, goal; Cunningham and Pallister, backs; Mansley, Glover and Logan, half-backs; Smith, Gray, Robledo, Bennett and Kelly, forwards. Referee; Mr. C. Fletcher (Davenham).
• Liverpool drew 1-1 with Grimsby, Done for Liverpool and Jones for Grimsby.
• Everton Reserves lost 3-1 at Chesterfield
WELL DONE LADS
April 23, 1946. The Evening Express
Yesterday 42,871 saw the tragedy of Goodison Park, where Barnsley hit the Blues hip and thigh to win 4-0 and make the title practically a certainly for Sheffield United, who, however, dropped another home point. The United lead by three points with only two matches to go. One victory will take the honours to Bramell Lane. Of course, events over the Easter show plainly that it is not all over by any means, for who would have imagined the United retaining only one out of four home points or Everton only two? So, Everton do not think it is hopeless. So long as you win at Burnely and Bury there is always the long chance. Remember, had Everton been able to secure four Easter points they would have been favourites for the title.
I referred to the Goodison game as a tragedy. Well, so it was, for mistakes were made which aided the cause of Barnsley, but right now I am going to say to Everton, “Well done, lads.” It has been a grand and glorious season, and even if the ultimate goal is not reached, well, it has been a great effort. No one can ask more. Just think that up to yesterday Everton had gone since September without losing at home and that no club had been able to do what Barnsley did –complete a “double” over them. And make no mistake about it ....Everton’s long run of success actually contributed to their down fall yesterday. The strain physical and mental, has been terrific, and when the Blues came up against a fast, virile side like Barnsley they just cracked up in the third game of four days. Take Wainwright and Fielding, for instance. In the past few months they have had to take all the bumps which follow persistent and special marking. They have been marked men, and after more “biffs” yesterday they just could not stand any more. It had become beyond human endurance. Others were the same, and I especially noted the big-hearted Humphreys labouring against the fat, nippy George Robledo, the only player of Childean extraction in League football. As with Humphreys, so with others. The lads have given their all, and by half-time yesterday any team could have beaten them, let alone such a brilliant side as were Barnsley. Apart from Greenhalgh and to a certain extent Boyes, no Everton player struck his game, and, of course, it would happen that Burnett, the man, who has been the recent hero, should also have an off-day. Twice Robledo lobbed the ball over Burnett’s head, but there, this was no blame-for-one-man game; it was a team failure against the fastest combination I have seen here this season; yes, faster, than Sheffield United. Robledo, Kelly and Smith were grand in attack, and if you liked Robledo just think that he is only 20, and Barnsley have his 17-year-old brother coming along. Manager Mr. Angus Seed avers that young Ted is equally as promising as George. The irony of the defeat was that Everton should miss two good chances even before Barnsley scored, and later their shooting became so hurried that it lacked accuracy. The Barnsley half-backs generally were in command, whereas the Blues intermediates, apart from a fine Bentham first half, were unable to hold the clever penetrative Barnsley raiders. I congratulate Barnsley on having a grand side, and no wonder Mr. Seed, with his directors, Messrs. Diggle, Thompson, and Lax, went home so happy. Everton chairman, Mr. Will Gibbons, had his biggest “party” since Christmas headed by Lord Major of Liverpool (Alderman Luke Hogan) and son, Luke, all the Services being represented, and Mr. Billy McConnell, chairman of Liverpool, having a “busman’s” holiday. Well, as Mr. Ernest Green, Mr. Theo Kelly, and myself said afterwards,” In the words of Albert Alexander, we can always smile in defeat.”
• Tomorrow night Marine entertains Everton “A” in the semi-final of the George Mahon Cup, the winners to meet Prescot B.I. in the final.
April 24, 1946, The Evening Express
Tranmere Rovers and Everton will make a fourth attempt tomorrow night at Prenton Park to decide who shall oppose Liverpool on May 1 in the final of the Liverpool Senior Cup. So far the Rovers and Blues have played three drawn games -3-3, 2-2 and 3-3 – and each game has been a thriller. Curiously enough, at no stage of the tie have Everton been in front, and have, as a matter of fact, been heading for defeat only to pull out fine rallies to save the day and the bonus. Last week nearly 15,000 spectators packed into Prenton and went home well satisfied. There should be a repeat gate tomorrow, for few will wish to miss the finale in this long drawn-out thriller. Everton are taking no chance, and field a stronger side than last week, foe Welsh international Tommy Jones will be at centre half, and Maurice Lindley at the original position of left-half. Grant and Johnson will comprise the right wing of attack, and Higgins, who used to play with Tranmere as a guest, will be at outside-left. Should the teams be level at the end of 90 minutes they will play 15 minutes each way extra time and if still level play to the first goal. In case of the extra “rations” the game opens at 6.30 pm. Everton; Sagar; Curwen, Purvis; Sweeney, Tommy Jones, Lindley; Grant, Johnson, Bell, Elliott, Higgins. Rovers; Lloyd; Williamson (T), Hornby, Archer, Bell, Williamson (S); Harlock, Smith, Atkinson, Bridges, Benny, Jones.
EVERTON F.C. SIGH McLLHATTON
April 25, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
By John Peel
Everton Football Club last night signed John McIlhatton, the twenty-four –year-old. Albion Rovers’ outside right a player they have been interested in for some time. Negotiations for the transfer reached and advanced stage, earlier this month. McIlhatton, who stands 5ft 7 ½ ins and weighs 10st 7lb, is a skilful winger and is more the type of player who provides scoring opportunities for his colleagues rather than an individual marksman. He has been with Albion Rovers for about six seasons and is considered one of the best extreme right wingmen in Scotland. A number of other English League clubs including Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur, and Middlesbrough, were also interested in McIlhatton, but I understand that the player himself expressed a preference for Everton some time ago.
There should be a grand struggle at Prenton Park tonight, when Tranmere Rovers and Everton meet for the fourth time in the Liverpool Senior Cup semi-final. The three previous meetings –two at Goodison Park and one at Prenton –have all been drawn with scores of 3-3, 2-2, and 3-3, and in each game the Rovers have held the lead until the closing stages. Tonight, however, a definite decision must be reached, and both sides will make strenuous efforts for the right to meet Liverpool in the final. The Everton side is a fairly strong one, including as it does Sagar, their English international goalkeeper, Jones (TG), the Welsh international centre half-back, and Bell, at centre-forward. The Rovers hope to include Williamson (T.) at full back and Smith and Atkinson in their attack. The kick-off is at 6.30 and the teams are; Tranmere Rovers; Lloyd; Williamson (T.), Hornby; Archer, Bell, Williamson (S); Harlock, Smith, Atkinson, Bridges, Jones (JB),. Everton; Sagar; Curwen, Purvis; Sweeney, Jones (TG), Lindley; Grant, Johnson, Bell, Elliott, Higgins.
April 25, 1946. The Evening Express
Everton, with their slender championship chance, go to Turf Moor on Saturday with an unchanged team to face Burnley, while at Goodison Park there will b two matches for the Central League game between the Blues and Burnley will be followed by a match between Everton Colts and a Bebington League representative eleven. Everton have some tickets at Goodison for the match with Glasgow Rangers, which takes place in Belfast on Tuesday evening priced 7s 6d. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes.
Everton Reserves; (Burnley at Goodison) Sagar; Hedley, Purvis; Sweeney, Tommy Jones, Davies or Curwen; McIihatton, Grant, Bell, Johnson, Higgins.
Everton Colts; Nixon; T. Jones, Rankin; J. Makin, Tansey, Street; Heath, Hickson, Wright, Hannah, Dickson.
Everton “A” (v Newton Y.M.C.A); J. A. Jones; Prescot, Dugdale; Hill, Falder, Dunroe; Lowe, Elliott, Birmingham, Rothwell, Lyon.
John McIlhatton, the much-discussed outside right of Albion Rovers, was last night signed by Everton, but he will not to able to play for them this season without special permission of the League. All the details regarding the transfer were completed some time ago and yesterday. Mr. Theo Kelly, secretary manager of Everton, made a special journey to Glasgow to complete the transfer and so cause disappointment to Chelsea, Brentford, and Blackpool among other clubs Mcllhatton is 24 years of age. He will play for Everton Reserves against Burnley Reserves at Goodison on Saturday.
April 25, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Negotiations for the transfer of John McIlhatton of Albion Rovers were completed last night, and the 24-years-old outside right has become an Everton player. Mcllhatton, who has been with Albion Rovers about six seasons, is regarded as one of the best wingers in Scotland, and has been watched several times with a view to a Scottish cap. His transfer was secured in the face of opposition from several other English League clubs, but I understand that the players himself expressed a preference for Everton. Mcllhatton is a well-built, speedy winger, with a shot in either foot. As a schoolboy he played as an inside forward, but after joining Albion Rovers in 1941 he was given his chance on the right wing and made the position his own. He is 5ft 7 ½ ins and weighs 10st 7lb. Mcllhatton will play for Everton Reserves against Burnley Reserves at Goodison Park on Saturday.
Bar anything but complete and unlikely collapsed by Sheffield United; no matter what Everton do in their last two games, runners-up seems certain to be their allotted honour, though they will be all out to wind up the season with a couple of clear-cut victories. On Saturday they visit Burnley, and finish their programme the following week with a trip to Bury. The team for Burnley is unchanged, vix;- Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes.
SENIOR CUP TIE
April 26, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton Gift Goal Against Tranmere
Tranmere Rovers 1, Everton 2
Everton qualified to entertain Liverpool in the final of the Liverpool Senior Cup by defeating Tranmere Rovers at Prenton Park last night. This was the fourth meeting of these teams in the semi-final stage, and the issue was virtually decided within half a minute of the start, when Everton obtained a grit goal. Straight from the kick-off they advanced up the middle, but when Johnson over-kicked, Read was presented with the chance of a simple clearance. After advancing from his goal, Read was unable to prevent the ball slipping through his hands and legs, so that Bell (R.C.) had merely to place to it into the empty net. This unsettled Tranmere. Fifteen minutes later Bell (R.C.) headed a second goal from a free kick by Lindley. The Rovers hopes were revived when a faulty pass back by Jones (TG) enabled Jones (TB) to score after 28 minutes. Everton throughout were the more polished combination. The Rovers haphazard play never promised much Elliott was the key man in the Everton attack. For Tranmere, who had three guests in Archer (Everton), Keeley (Accrington) and Baines (Wrexham), Bell (H.) was outstanding. Tranmere Rovers; Read, goal; Barrett and Hornby, backs; Archer (Everton), Bell (H.), and Williamson, half-backs; Atkinson, Keeley (Accrington), Baines (Wrexham), Bridges, and Jones (TB), forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Curwen and Purvis, backs; Sweeney, Jones (TG), and Lindley, half-backs; Grant, Johnson, Bell (RC), Ellioitt and Higgins, forwards. Referee; Mr. W.H.E. Evans (Liverpool).
April 26, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Everton slipped by the wayside during Easter, and only a miracle can now give them the Championship. As there is many a slip twixt cup and lip, however, it behoves Everton to put their best foot forward at Burnley in case Sheffield United come unstuck in their remaining games. I need hardly say that many prospective League champions have been beaten on the post before, and the Yorkshire side are not yet home high and dry. Everton have undeniably shown a falling-off. Personally I think the altered state of the ground has had a lot to do with it, for the Everton players are essentially “ball workers,” and the flighty ball of the last few weeks has not helped them. They have not made any change in the side for the return game at Burnley which proves that there is still every confidence in the team which has carried the banner so magnificently throughout the season. An Everton win will put them in the race once again, for it is no certainty that Sheffield United will beat either Manchester City or Burnley. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes.
CHAMPIONSHIP HOPES LOST
April 29, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
Burnley 1 Everton 0
Whatever hopes Everton had of championship honours were extinguished at Turf Moor. Burnley were always the more commanding and enterprising side and in the spell of pressure exerted in the closing stages Everton were lucky not to find themselves in considerable arrears. A stiff breeze from goal to goal spoiled the game, but Burnley were the more adaptable side. They attacked with monotonous regularity. In midfield they had matters their own way, but within goal-scoring range the Everton defenders distinguished themselves. Facing the breeze, Everton stood the pace well until the last quarter of an hour, and then the bewildering speed of Burnley’s inside trio, promised by the strong attacking qualities of Soo. Burnley’s international guest player, beat them. Burnett was constantly in action; twice he made remarkable saves from Morris, Burnley’s new Welsh “cap.” Burnley winning goal came after 59 minutes, when Jackson scored following crafty play by Morris, who after working a position on the left wing, put through a perfect ground pass for Jackson to take the ball in his stride. Everton’s attack was inept, Strong, in the Burnley goal, having one of the easiest games this season.
• Liverpool won 4-0 against Blackpool. Thorpe own goal, Jones, Balmer, Taylor.
April 29, 1946. The Evening Express
While there were few “fireworks” in the game between Burnley and Everton at Turf Moor, there was no lack of liveliness, and if at times the play was not as clever as one would expect from these teams, the gusty wind was as much as much to blame as anything, for it played all kinds of tricks with the ball. There was little, if anything to choice between the sides in the first half. A complete change, however, came over the play in the second half, and the lead of one goal did not reflect Burnley’s superiority. It was in this period that the Burnley forwards, particularly Morris and Jackson, showed their true paces. They often had the Everton defence at sixes and sevens. Here, too, Soo’s artistry was most apparent. The Everton side must count themselves lucky to escape with so small a margin, and must gave full credit to the splendid work of their backs and goalkeeper, who fought back splendidly. It was they primarily who were responsible in keeping the score down. Still Everton have put up a grand show, Everton play their last home match on Wednesday and the County F.A. officials are hoping that Jack Mcllhatton, Everton’s new Scottish winger, will be seen in action. Everton, issued their way badly during the final weeks, but the brilliance of the fight is testimony to the efficacy of the players and the soundness of the management.
Everton break new ground tomorrow night for they visit Belfast to play, not an Irish club, but Glasgow Rangers for the benefit of Mr. Jack Price, for so long a leading Irish legislator. At the moment of writing I do not know Everton’s team, but here is the Rangers side; J. Shaw; Gray, John Shaw; Watkin, Young, Symon; Wadded, Gillick, Armison, Duncanson, Williamson.
EVERTRON NOT CHAMPIONS
April 29, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Everton’s championship “hopes” has gone. Burnley extinguished it at Turf Moor on Saturday when they won by a solitary goal, but their one-goal victory hardly tells a true story of Burnley’s superiority for they were always the more enterprising side and Everton were fortunate not to be defeated by a heavier margin. Burnley adapted themselves better to the conditions and for long spells they had Everton on the defensive by their fast and enterprising football. Burnett was constantly in action, and was responsible for many wonderful saves form Morris. Burnley’s new Welsh international. The Everton attack was completely off its game, and Strong, the Burnley goalkeeper, had one of the easiest games this season. Everton, however, defied the Burnley marksman for three parts of the game, but the last quarter of an hour saw Burnley well on top. All the Everton honours go to their defence, where Burnett, Jackson and Greenhalgh were on top form. The winning goal came just on the hour, when Morris, one of the cleverest forwards afield, opened the way with a perfect through pass for Jackson to take the ball on the run and beat Burnett.
EVERTON’S GAME AT BELFAST
April 30, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
By John Peel
Everton take a strong team to Belfast for this evening’s game with Glasgow Rangers – a “benefit” for Mr. J.Price, who, for a long period was a leading Irish football legislator. The Goodison Park defence will be unchanged but six forwards have been named and from them the line will be selected. Rangers too are strongly represented. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson (forwards from); Stevenson, Higgins, Johnson, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes. Glasgow Rangers; J. Shaw; Gray, John Shaw; Watkin, Young, Symon, Waddell, Gillick, Annison, Duncanson, Williamson.
• Liverpool lost 1-0 at Bolton. Roberts scored the only goal.
SENIOR CUP FINAL
April 30, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
If the honour of winning a cup was judged solely by the handsomeness of the trophy, them the Liverpool Senior Cup would rank higher than the F.A. Cup piece which Derby County lifted for it is twice as “high” wide, and handsome, as the national trophy. It has to be seen to be believed. Tomorrow at Goodison Park (6.45) Everton and Liverpool do battle again, as they have so many times in the past, for the honour of holding it for twelve months. Everton were taken to a foursome before they could get the better of Tranmere Rovers, and if tomorrow’s encounter is as good as either of the two Everton-Tranmere games I saw then it will be worth watching. Everton have won the trophy twenty-six times, against eighteen wins by Liverpool, so the Reds have a lot of leeway to make up. In the event of a draw there will be extra time. Liverpool (from); Ashcroft; Westby, Seddon, Ramsden; Taylor, Hughes, Spicer; Nieuwenhuys, Balmer, Jones, Done, Liddell, Priday. Everton’s team will not be selected until just before the game.