August 3, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
First player to arrive at Goodison Park after an over-night journey from Ireland, was newcomer Daniel Cameron, inside forward from Shelborne. He arrived at the ground at about 7 a.m., and was excused duty for today. Absentees were Harry McCormick, Derby County winger, another of Everton’s new players. Peter Farrell and Tommy Eglington. Who had been unable to get sailing tickets from Ireland. They will report for duty tomorrow. Altogether 31 of Everton’s playing staff answered the call-up.” Aubrey Powell, Welsh international and former Leeds United forward was the only senior, new player present. He joined the “Old brigade” for light training and roadwork with trainer Harry Cook and assistant trainer W. Borthwick. Powell was given a special welcome from his new colleagues, particularly Sagar, Lindley, and Johnson, with whom he has played Army football on the Continent.
FARRELL IS CAPTAIN
August 7, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Peter Farrell, Everton’s Irish international has been appointed captain of the Goodison Park team for the coming season. During the absence of Norman Greenhalgh last winter Farrell officiated as acting-captain. He has all the attributes needed to make a successful skipper; particularly the dogged spirit and whole-heartedness which can inspire his colleagues to flight back when the tides is running against them. Farrell formerly of Shamrock Rovers signed for Everton two years ago, and made his senior debut on November 23, 1946, and since then he has never been absent except through injury or illness. Last January, he suffered a fractured jaw in the home game against Derby County, but was on duty again in three weeks. Actually he would have been back the next week had he been permitted his own way, but the club wisely refused to take what would have been a foolish risk.
TOMMY JONES FOR ITALY?
August 10, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Rome Side Seeks His Signature
Tommy Jones, Everton’s Welsh international has been offered a lucrative contract by Roma F.C., one of leading Italian Soccer sides, to join them as player-coach. Subject to payment of a transfer fee. Everton are willing to release him. This news, which will come as a bombshell to Everton supporters, is the outcome of negotiations which have been proceeding for some weeks, through hitherto I have been bound to secrecy. Everton are not anxious to part with Jones, but as the offer he has received is far greater than he could make by spending the rest of his playing days in England football, the board has generously decided not to stand in his way.
Fee About £15,000
Everton will, however, require a transfer fee, and as Italy belongs to the International Federation of Football Associations, Roma must pay this before Jones’s registration can be recognised abroad. I understand Everton have named a figure around £15,500, and this Roma are prepared to discuss. The negotiation on behalf of the Italian have been carried out with much patience by Dr. Claudio Ferrari, a former outside right of Roma, now a barrister resident in Liverpool. Following several conversations with Mr. Theo Kelly, Everton’s secretary-manager, duty reported by Dr. Ferrari to Roma, tentative agreement was reached last week on all major points.
Today, Dr. Ferrari received a cablegram from Signor Pietro Baldassarre, president of the Roma club, who is one of the leading Soccer officials in Italy, and a member of their Olympic committee that the terms were agreeable to his board. Though final arrangements have yet to be made and may take some time, Dr. Ferrari was very hopeful of a successful outcome when I spoke to him today. If it is humanly possible we mean to complete arrangement for Jones to play for Roma he said, “And I think the deal will now go through.” The player will get a lump sum down a-contract of from two to four years whichever he wishes a job as coach hen his playing days are over, a wage of approximately £25 a week, plus bonuses, a house in the best part of Roma and other advantages.
Has 35,000 Spectators
Providing the guarantees satisfy financially secured, he is willing to take the plunge. The Italian season is from the end of September to the end of June.
Premier Italian Club
The Roma Club has an average gate of about 35,000 spectators, the limit of their present ground. In the near future, however, they will move into a super-stadium accommodating 100,000 supporters. Italian Clubs are allowed a maximum of three foreigners in their sides, and Dr. Ferrari is also looking for two inside forwards of international calibre.
Tommy Jones is one of the most popular players ever to have worm Everton’s colours, and one of the finest centre halves of all-time. His classic style, clean play, and wonderful ball control have endeared him to all lovers of the finer arts of football. After playing for Wales as a schoolboy he signed for Wrexham following his 14th birthday, turned professional at 17 and joined Everton in March 1936. Soon after 1937-38 season started Jones permanently displaced Charlie Gee in the Everton senior side, and was one of the stalwarts of their pre-war championship team. He got the first of his many Welsh caps in March 1938, and today is still automatic choice for international games. During the past couple of seasons Jones has had certain differences with Everton. Several times he asked for his transfer, always receiving a firm refusal until November last, when the board placed him on the open-to-transfer list.
EVERTON’S NEW FACES
August 11, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Everton have a lot of new faces to show to their followers in the practice match at Goodison Park on Saturday. Furthermost Mcllhatton, who has not played since his cartilage operation last season, returns at out-side right for the “Yellows” who will be captained by Dodds. There is one “A.N.Other” in the Blues team. Powell, the former Leeds United and Welsh international, will move inside to accommodate him. Dugdale is another who has fully recovered from his last season’s injury. Other news names are Cameron, Lewis and McCormick. Teams; Blues; Sagar; Jackson, Dugdale; Grant, Jones, Farrell; A.N. Other, Powell, Lewis, Fielding, Eglington. Yellows; Jones; Saunders, Hedley; Cameron, Humphreys, Lindley; Mcllhatton, Wainwright, Dodds, Lello, McCormick.
ROAM’S BID FOR JONES
August 12, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
If Tommy Jones does eventually sign for Roma F.C., and pack his grips for Italy, several British stars will be anxious to hear what he thinks of the change after he has had reasonable time to judge. So far, however, it is not certain that Jones is going, as I made clear when I gave you the exclusive news of the negotiations. Roma want him badly and are prepared to pay a big transfer fee. Everton are willing to sell. But Mr. Thomas G. Jones is a shrewd business man as well as a brilliant footballer –the two are not always synonymous – he intends to make sure that all the ends are tied up with cast-iron guarantees which secure his future beyond doubt. Details have still to be worked out, and in these days things are not always so easy as once was the case. Why will other stars be so keenly interested in Jones’s reactions if he takes the plunge into Italian soccer? Simply because if he gives it the O.K. they may feel inclined to follow his example. In short, Roma’s bid for Jones is a sign that English soccer may shortly have to face foreign competition in more ways than trials of strength on the playing field. Several countries would like British players. Fortunately for us, in many cases the game is not with them the big commercial business it is here, and the moderate financial standing of their clubs prohibits them paying big fees. In the case of Italian, however, soccer has always thrived and though the war set them back badly, their clubs to-day are returning to an era of prosperity which enables their leading clubs to enter the market as potential buyers of our best.
August 14, 1948. The Evening Express
At Goodison Park
Blues; - Sagar, goal; Jackson and Dugdale, backs; Grant, Jones (T.G.) and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Johnson, Powell, Higgins, Fielding and Eglington, forwards. Yellows; - Jones (J.A.), goal; Saunders, and Hedley, backs; Cameron, Humphreys and Lindley, half-backs; Mcllhatton, Wainwright, Dodds (captain), Lello, and McCormick, forwards. Referee; Mr. W.H. Evans (Liverpool). A fair crowd attended for the Toffees first public trial at which the chief attraction was the appearance of Aubrey Powell, the Welsh international inside-forward from Leeds United. Other newcomers on view were outside-left McCormick (Derby County) and Cameron (Shelborne Eire). There was some good constructive play in the early stages by both sides. Generally the defences had the best of matters. The Yellows attack, led by Dodds, was the more dangerous combination, however, and “Jock” put them ahead after an individual effort. All the newcomers had blended well with their new colleagues and Powell was in the limelight.
Half-time; Blues 0, Yellows 1.
NEW EVERTON MEN ON VIEW
August 14, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Everton announced one late change in the Blues team, Higgins appealing for Lewis s centre forward. Teams; Blues; - Sagar, goal; Jackson and Dugdale, backs; Grant, Jones (T.G.) and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Johnson, Powell, Higgins, Fielding and Eglington, forwards. Yellows; - Jones (J.A.), goal; Saunders, and Hedley, backs; Cameron, Humphreys and Lindley, half-backs; Mcllhatton, Wainwright, Dodds (captain), Lello, and McCormick, forwards. Referee; Mr. W.H. Evans (Liverpool). For many of the 15,000 crowd at Goodison the main interest was focused on the several newcomers with particular emphasis on Aubrey Powell. Stockily built, Powell revealed his worth earlier, and one neat dribble and far flung pass to Eglington was most effective. A subsequent header of his from Johnson nearly caught Jones napping, the ball only being scrambled away in time. Lello had the ball in the net for the Yellows and was obviously offside and Wainwright was unfortunate enough to strike the upright. Not surprisingly a lot of the fare was of the go-as-you-please variety through some sting was introduced with a rocklike Wainwright shot which Sagar tipped over for a corner.
Another newcomer in McCormick seemed to settle down almost immediately and produced a number of nice touches and at least one outstanding individual burst. Cameron was quietly effective –a remark which can apply with even more force to what Powell did. Dodds scored for Yellows after 20 minutes –a really brilliant individual effort in which he dribbled past Jackson and Tommy Jones in the space of a sixpence, eluded Sagar and tapped the ball gently into the net.
Half-time; Blues 0, Yellow 1.
The enthusiasm of Higgins was worth nothing. One header of his was right on the mark, and it needed the vigilance of Jones to prevent the equalising goal. The work of Jones (J.A), incidentally, was quite irreproachable, and among the regulars the cool nonchalance of Tommy Jones, the artistry of Fielding, and Sagar’s agility was always in evidence. At right half for the Blues Grant was proving a tireless worker. Result Blues 0, Yellows 1
August 16, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
The 17,556 spectators at Goodison went away well satisfied with Aubrey Powell’s first appearance in Everton’s colours. Most of his work in a game which did not carry a lot of “bite” was of the quietly effective kind. His passes were always perfectly timed and many brought précising openings. Both Cameron, the Irish right half, and McCormick outside left from Derby, did quite well, and a feature was the impeccable performance of Jones (J.A) in the Yellow’s goal. Yellows eventually won by a goal from Dodds after 20 minutes –a brilliant individual affair.
August 17, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton the sensation club of the year so far as signings are concerned, are not resting, but additional signings before the season’s grand opening on Saturday will fulfil the club determination to have every position not only duplicated but sometimes tripicated. This is guarding against the injury bogy which must hit every club in turn, but which avoiding the Toffees for long spells last season. It any Everton player in injured this season the club will have a star man to fill the vacancy. As a matter of fact one of Everton’s main worries at the moment must be not whom to play against Newcastle United at Goodison Park on Saturday, but whom to leave out. Everton are carrying a professional staff well above normal in numbers and this may lead to inquires from other clubs. The one thing which has pleased the club following perhaps more than anything else is the all-out bid for Everton to take 100 per cent service on the wings. Not since the joy days of Gillick, Boyes, and Caskie have Everton had that skill on the wings which was a club feature since the start of the century. Now Everton look like recapturing the glories of the past, and I was delighted to learn that Johnny Mcllhatton had such a good game in Saturday’s trial. I share Everton’s faith in Mcllhatton who has not experienced the best of luck since he landed at Goodison. This Scot could still set the Mersey alight. Everton would like to secure another centre-forward to feel perfectly equipped and before Saturday I think you will find them getting their man. The directors this evening to select the side for this grand re-union with Newcastle which should produce a gathering of 70,000 avid fans.
August 18, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Everton, who have attractive visitors in Newcastle United for their opening fixture at Goodison Park, includes only one of their close season signing, Aubrey Powell, formerly of Leeds United. Johnny Mcllhatton, now thoroughly recovered after his rather obstinate knee trouble, returns to outside right, while Dugdale after his long absence in the later part of last season, is back as partner to Saunders. Teams; Sagar; Saunders, Dugdale; Lindley, Jones (TG), Farrell; Mcllhatton, Powell, Dodds, Fielding, Eglington.
TEAMS FOR OPENINGF GAME
August 18, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton include one new player for their match with Newcastle United at Goodison Park on Saturday. The Everton newcomer is Aubrey Powell, the Welsh international inside-right from Leeds United, and he will partner Mcllhatton, who returns following his cartilage operation last year. Gordon Dugdale who was injured in the closing weeks of last season, regains his place as left-back, partnering Saunders. Teams; Sagar; Saunders, Dugdale; Lindley, Jones (TG), Farrell; Mcllhatton, Powell, Dodds, Fielding, Eglington.
EVERTON STILL SEARCHING
August 19, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Like many other clubs, Everton have money to spend. They want to plough back into the game much of the vast profit they made last year. During the close season they were more active in the transfer market than most clubs. Powell, McCormick, Cameron, and Corr made a fair hefty hole in the £26,000 surplus of the last balance-sheet. But today they are still without an experienced centre forward to deputise in case of need for Jack Dodds who twice asked for his transfer towards the end of the last season. Everton’s summer efforts to remedy this position are still continuing. But it is difficult to get anybody to consider even the most tempting offers. Money does not talk as it once did, not even in Scotland where Everton have turned their attention gain during the past week.
NEWCASTLE AT GOODISON
August 20, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Everton have made certain strengthening signings, and are keen to make still more. Only one of their summer acquisitions makes his appearance tomorrow, however, and that is Aubrey Powell, the stocky and strong-shooing Welsh inside right. Their bid for Langton was not big enough as I indicated earlier, but the club is wisely not entering into the frenzied bidding which has characterised some recent deals. Langton now thrown in his lot with Preston who signed him last night, in a double deal which sees Gray, Preston’s right back go to Ewood Park. Allowing the fee the latter would normally command, it is estimated that the transaction is only a hundred or so below the record of £20,050. Where will it all end? Everton could hardly have picked more attractive visitors for their opening game than Newcastle United, the glamour side which last season was concerned, either as buyers or sellers, in the biggest series of high-priced transfers ever negotiated by one club in a season. Newcastle’s profit in their promotion year was a record. That they are not hoarding their wealth had been evident from their recent bids for star players, culminating in an offer of £25,000 for Bobby Langton. Whether any one player is worth that amount is another matter. Newcastle apparently have money to burn. After Powell interest of the Everton fans will centre next on the return of Johnny Mcllhatton, now fully recovered from his cartilage operation. Mcllhatton has not been an unequalled success, but if he can strike a good patch and regain his full confidence he may yet justify those who have faith in him. Here’s wishing him well. Last year Sagar saved Everton so many times that it became almost monotscous to record the fact. I hope too much is not going to rest on the shoulders this time. If the advert of Powell makes the forward line more penetrative then Everton should show improvement. A solid victory to start off would be helpful in giving the side confidence. Teams;- Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Dugdale; Lindley, Jones (TG), Farrell; Mcllhatton, Powell, Dodds, Fielding, Eglington. Newcastle United; Fairbrother; Fraser, Graig; Harvey, Brennan, Dodgin, Gibson, Taylor, Milburn, Lowrie, Walker.
50,000 WELCOME GEORDIES’ RETURN
August 21, 1948. The Evening Express
See Thrill-A-Second Football And A Series of Goals
Everton and Newcastle United provided a 50,000 crowd with a great curtain-raiser to the new season at Goodison Park. On a pitch made treacherous by heavy rainfall and a teasing wind, both sides served up speedy resourceful football of the thrill-a-minute variety. Everton took an early lead, but both sides were on terms 2-2 at the interval, then Newcastle took the lead for the second time in the match only for Dodds to save the game and a point for Everton. The Geordies had brought a strong contingent of supporters along with them. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Lindley, Jones and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Mcllhatton, Powell, Dodds, Fielding, and Eglington, forwards. Newcastle United;- Fairbrother, goal; Fraser and Craig, backs; Harvey, Brennan, and Dodgin, half-backs; Gibson, Taylor, Milburn, Lowrie, and Walker, forwards. Referee; Mr. A.E. Ellis (Halifax). Everton went away to a confident start, Eglington forcing a corner from Dugdale’s free-kick, but Fielding’s in-swinger found the side netting. Then Fairbrother had to look sharp to take charge of Brennan’s back pass before Dodds could make contact as he came in pell mell. Everton were showing an encouraging willingness to move to the ball and with the United defence revealing signs of shakiness the “Toffees” went ahead to take the lead at exactly five minutes. It was Mcllhatton who paved the way by cutting inside and pushing the ball forward along the ground for the in-running Fielding. Fraser was there first, however, but completely misjudged his kick, no doubt due to the slippy ball, and he could do no better than slice it to the feet of Dodds, standing almost on the edge of the goal area. Dodds gave Fairbrother no chance with a powerful oblique drive into the near corner. This was just the encouragement needed and there was prospects of another success when Farrell was fouled just outside the penalty area. Fairbrother had all his work cut out to deal with Jones’s terrific drive, but referee Ellis ordered the kick to be re-taken for an infringement by the Newcastle defenders and this time Jones placed yards outside.
Now United began to come into the game, and in their first really menacing attack, they shook the confident Everton by equalising. The Everton defence hung back and allowed Lowrie to drive in fiercely from 18 yards, only for Sagar to save magnificently at full length. Gibson finally gained possession, swung the ball across to Walker on the opposite wing, and Walker beat Sagar with a low drive from almost a right angle. For a time it was Newcastle’s turn and such was the power of Lowrie’s 30-yard volley that it sprang out of Sagar’s hands, and he was only just able to take possession at the second attempt. Away went Everton, for Dodds to outwit Brennan cleverly and cross a perfect ball, but none of his colleagues was on hand to take advantage of a nicely created opening. As it was, Fraser taking no chances, headed behind for an unproductive corner. There was an undeniable power and speed about this Newcastle attack, and after Taylor had driven narrowly wide from Millburn’s choice forward pass, the United went away to take the lead through Lowrie. Lowrie ran fully 25 yards successfully holding off repeated challenges from three Everton defenders, to beat Sagar all the way with a perfectly placed drive from 12-yards. Time 18 minutes. This was a cleverly taken goal, but one which should have been prevented, Dodds was leading the Everton line with immense enthusiasm, but as yet not a great deal had been seen of Powell. However, Powell, did come into the picture with nice inter-passing in co-operation with Fielding, which saw Dodds placed in possession high up on the left. Dodds placed his centre accurately only to see Fielding head yards over the top. Gradually Everton reasserted themselves and they deservedly drew level in the 27th minute, when Farrell made ground rapidly, and his cross was placed with such precision that Powell was presented with a gift offering. Standing less than ten yards from goal he brought the ball down coolly and left Fairbrother helpless with a fiery first timer. Newcastle straight away came perilousity neat to regaining their lead when Millburn, always a dangerous leader, took advantage of further hesitancy on the part of the Everton defenders to drive in low. Again Sagar saved the day, diving to take the ball low down near the foot of the post. This was thrill-a-second football to delight the hugh crowd and great work by Eglington should have led to Everton forging ahead. Eglington carved out a glorious opening for Fielding, but Fielding took the ball too far in, and was crowded out.
Pace A Cracker
The pace so far had been a cracker and it was hardly surprising that things quietened down somewhat as the interval approached. Even so Everton threw away another splendid hence of regaining control when Dodds opened up a way for Mcllhatton who eluded Craig and slipped the ball inside invitingly for Powell. Powell, attempting to break the net, only succeeded in missing his kick altogether.
Half-time; Everton 2, Newcastle United 2
Everton on resuming, went away determinedly to stage an all-out attack, during which Fraser almost turned the ball into his own goal. After Craig had headed clear a swerving shot from Fielding, relief came to United when Powell drove high and wide. The first stoppage of the game for injuries was a short one, Brennan recovering quickly from a knock on the head. Unnecessary dalliance proved fatal to Powell’s attempt to apply the finishing touch to Mcllhatton’s spade work. Dodds almost took Fairbrother by surprise with a glancing header from Dugdale’s free kick, the Newcastle goalkeeper taking the ball at the last moment. Then roars from the crowd heralded a mighty half the length of the field drive by Dugdale which thundered against a bar with Fairbrother beaten. A narrow escape for United, this. Newcastle came again with progressive work by the fast-moving Millburn, who slipped the ball forward for Taylor to bring Sagar to his knees with a rasping grounder. Generally speaking, Everton held the balance at this stage, and Craig only just managed to cut out Fielding’s angled drive at the expense of a corner, which came to nothing. After a brief excursion by Gibson and Millburn had been repelled, Dodds was fouled as he went on the goal trail prompted by Mcllhatton, but Jones made poor use of the free kick. Sagar earned applause for the sureness of his leap and catch from Millburn’s dropping centre, and then Dodds turned the ball across field in glorious style, only to see Eglington push the ball too far forward.
Milburn outwitted Jones, thanks to his terrific turn of speed, and it was only the fact that Dugdale proved capable of recovering equally as quickly that Sagar was not troubled. Newcastle continued to defend solidly and in the 62nd minute, United broke away and Walker was allowed to carry on high up on the left when he appealed to be offside. He swung the ball over to Gibson who in turn transferred to Lowrie. Lowrie made no mistake with a terrific close range drive which gave Sagar no chance. Everton struck back hard in face of this further shock, which had again been contributed by the defensive hesitancy and Dodds had wretched luck with a hooked shot which beat the advancing Fairbrother but flashed a yard wide of the far post. After a quiet opening half Mcllhatton was now having an exceptionally good innings, but there was little thrust from the Everton inside forwards. Official attendance, 57,729. Right out of the blue with only nine minutes remaining Everton once again drew level. It was a Fielding made goal, brilliantly concerted by Dodds. Final; Everton 3, Newcastle United 3.
WEST BROM RES V EVERTON RES
August 21, 1948. The Evening Express
Albion were the first away, but were unable to get within striking distance. A centre from Hodgetts threatened danger. Taylor’s header sailed high over the bar. In the next assault Albion went ahead through Vickers, their success coming in the third minute. Everton continued on the defensive and Taylor struck an upright with Jones well beaten. The keeper also saved a pile-driver from Williams. Following a free kick, Lello was put in possession, but he shot weakly outside when well placed. Jackson and Boyle were compelled to work hard in the Everton defence, and Humphreys was a tower of strength. A surprise equaliser after 21 minutes came when Johnson shot into the net, following a breakaway, and encouraged by this success Everton again attacked only for Lello to be dispossessed close in after a clever dribble. When two free kicks relieved further pressure, Heath punched clear from a lusty drive by Jackson. Finch was at fault in a further approach on Everton’s citadel, when he fired wide, after beating three opponents. Everton’s defence continued to hold the home attack at bay. Half-time; West Bromwich Res 1, Everton 1
Both sides attacked in turn without either keeper being seriously troubled, but both sides were finding it difficult to control the wet ball. Horne kicked off the goal after McCormick made ground for Everton, and a free kick on the same wing travelled across the goalmouth and outside. The winger later forced a corner, from which Higgins headed against the crossbar. Williams scored for West Bromwich. Finals; West Bromwich Res 2, Everton Res 1.
SKELMERSDALE V EVERTON “A”
August 21, 1948. The Evening Express
Makin scored for Everton with a shot which entered the goal off Gowle. With wind in their favour Everton had the better of play, and added a second goal, a long dropping shot from Rankin.
Half-time; Skelmersdale 0, Everton “A” 2. Final; Skelmersdale 2, Everton “A” 3
“TIT-FOR-TAT” THRILLS AT GOODISON PARK
August 21, 1948. The Liverpool Football Echo
Three Equalisers Give Big Crowd Plenty To Cheer
Nippy Newcastle Forwards
Everton 3, Newcastle United 3
Newcastle would be well satisfied with a “half” at Goodison Park. They had given value for money, in fact, the game had been most attractive. Everton almost won a victory, outright when Dodds at the finish rattled the Newcastle woodwork. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Lindley, Jones and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Mcllhatton, Powell, Dodds, Fielding, and Eglington, forwards. Newcastle United;- Fairbrother, goal; Fraser and Craig, backs; Harvey, Brennan, and Dodgin, half-backs; Gibson, Taylor, Milburn, Lowrie, and Walker, forwards. Referee; Mr. A.E. Ellis (Halifax). The weather was most unkind for the opening of the 1948-49 football season. Nevertheless, there was a magnificent crowd at Goodison Park to see Everton tackle the glamorous Newcastle United, who were promoted last season. This was the first appearance of United in First Division football for 11 years and the fact that George Martin the former Everton forward, was now manager was an added attraction. My estimation of the attendance was 60,000 despite the rain, and from what I saw outside the ground there were many to follow. Naturally great interest was centred in the first appearance of Aubrey Powell who was signed not so long ago. Everton were soon off the mark. They showed a thrust and aggression which had Newcastle pinned down into their own quarters, and one began to wonder just how long the United defence could stand up to the test.
An Early Success
Four minutes Everton had pounded the Newcastle backs and half backs fairly heavily whereas the United had hardly crossed the half-way line. The turning point came at the fourth minute and the downfall of the Newcastle goal was due partly to a defensive slip which came about no doubt through the slippery nature of the ball. A Newcastle defender sliced his clearance and an Everton player also followed up. But the ball also travelled on to Dodds, who closed in and from short range shot past the advancing Fairbrother. To say that this was a joy to Everton was only to express it mildly, and for some time Everton were completely in command.
United Hit Back
One free kick by tom Jones almost carried Fairbrother through the back of his net but the kick had to be retaken, and this time Jones tried to lob one in, but the ball travelled wide. Just after this Newcastle showed their real attacking power, and at 16 minutes they had equalised, Walker running in from the outside left position into the centre, shot beyond Sagar. To say that this was a joy to Everton, was only to express it mildly and for some time Everton were completely in command.
United Hit Back
One free kick by Tom Jones almost carried Fairbrother through the back of his net, but the kick had to be retaken, and this time Jones tried to lob one in, but the ball travelled wide. Just after this Newcastle showed their real attacking powers and at 16 minutes they had equalised, Walker running in from the outside left position into the centre, shot beyond Sagar. This was a shot to say the least, but more shots were to follow, for Newcastle saw that they had a chances if they adopted the right methods. Sagar had to make one or two saves, which showed that the North-Easterners had more than one shot in their locker. At 18 minutes Lowrie created a stir in the home support when he ran through to score at 18 minutes. For a spell Newcastle provided further threats and the Everton defence not always entirely secure was often caught on the wrong foot.
Everton were naturally perturbed at the turn of events but they got back some of their poise during the next few minutes. At 26 minutes Farrell pushed through a nice pass and Powell moved in cutely to tap the ball to the back of the net giving Fairbrother no chance whatever. Powell thus made an auspicious debut by scoring in his first game for Everton. For a time there was an equality between the teams, and first one goal area and then the other was visited. The United were keen to shoot, and whenever the slightest opening showed itself they had a go. Fielding tried a long effort and Fairbrother had to act smartly to keep his goal intact with a ball that was travelling head high. It had been entertaining football and there were some really nice combined efforts.
The Artful Dodgini
Eglington smartly kept the ball in play and tried to speak the ball from the goalline, but Fairbrother was not going to have any of that. Mcllhatton was surprised when Dodgin came round his back to take the ball, but the Everton right winger did better when he beat Craig, then slipped the ball inside to Powell, who tried to make a mighty drive, but kicked round the ball. Neat the interval both sides strove hard to secure a leading goal and Jones was often seen high up above all others heading the ball to safety. I had not seen a great deal of the expensive Gibson, but I could see a lot of confidence in the Newcastle side.
Half-time –Everton 2, Newcastle United 2
Everton were quickly off the mark in the second half, and Fraser, the Newcastle right back, made yet another faulty clearance in the same way as he did when Dodds scored his goal but on this occasion he had no penalty to pay. Mcllhatton put a nice ball into the United goalmouth but the Newcastle defenders had got together to deal with such a happening.
An off-Side Doubt
I thought Eglington was wrongly adjusted off-side when he had a great chance of running in, but my angle was not as good as that of the referee. Newcastle made a quick raid and they looked decadently dangerous but a quick intervention on the part of an Everton defender cut out that danger, and Mcllhatton was once again prominent with a ball through the middle but unfortunately there was an colleague up to take advantage.
Calling the Tune
Dugdale showed a nice idea when he lobbed the ball over an opponents head, and then went on to complete an excellent clearance. Everton at this point were undeniably calling the tune, and Dodds, although running away from the ball made a delightful header which Fairbrother had to move to sharply to prevent a goal. The Newcastle goalkeeper half a minute later was fortunate to get away without having to pay any penalty when Dugdale lobbed the ball right into goalmouth and the ball struck the crossbar, with Fairbrother apparently all at sea. Hereabouts Newcastle set their attack in motion, and Taylor delivered a low drive which Sagar parried and then went on to complete the save.
Jones had made up his mind that he would be “first” in his dealings with Milburn, the strongly built Newcastle centre forward. On a number of occasions he came round from behind to take the ball which, had it gone to Milburn might have done serious damage to Everton’s defence. Fairbrother, who seems to me to have been in the game for ever, is still a capable custodian. He came out of goal and reached high to turn the ball away as it was dropping to the head of Dodds who was stationed in the right place for such an eventuality.
Sagar went up and safely clutched a Milburn centre, with Lowrie waiting the ball’s arrival. Eglington in his anxiety to do the right thing touched the ball too far forward and Fairbrother ran out and cleared.
Everton v. Newcastle
Newcastle bank a great deal on Milburn to score goals, and there was no doubt that he would have to be allowed few chances for he was just the type to take them. He was once clean through and the many Newcastle people present had almost framed their months to shout goal when Saunders and Dugdale got to grips with the Newcastle leader.
Dugdale was hurt in a duel with Gibson, but soon recovered. It was almost immediately following Dugdale’s injury that Newcastle came along to score their third goal. To mind the initial part of this goal started from what I considered a definite offside move by Walker. He was allowed to go on, and the ball eventually came over to Gibson who sent it back into the middle where Lowrie smashed home one of these fierce drive for which he is so well known. The ball went into the Everton net, as though it had been jet-propelled. Time 68 minutes. This goal naturally put Newcastle on the attack and a long ball out to Walker looked to be full of dynamite but the winger found the ball running just away from him. Everton hit back and Dodds made a cute lob as he saw Fairbrother advancing from his goal, but the ball slewed just wide of its objective.
Big Everton Effort
Mcllhatton, Powell, and Fielding joined together in an effort to prise open the Newcastle defence and so make an opening for Dodds. The plan did not succeed, although there was an element of good fortune about the way the Newcastle defence got out of its difficulty. Everton for a time were operating in Newcastle’s territory but all of a sudden the United broke loose and Lowrie brushed his way through the opposition to deliver one of his high-powered efforts. He was slightly off the mark and Sagar was not even called upon. One can well imagine what a terror to opposition goalkeeper this Lowrie man can be.
Dodds Crashes Through
Most Evertonians had settled down in the belief that a defeat must be their portion, for despite the fact that they were now the aggressors the Newcastle defence looked good enough to hold on the lead. But 10, minutes from the end Fielding made a rather lengthy dribble and Eglington appeared to be waiting for a pass. The Everton inside, however, sent the ball across to Dodds, who killed the ball with one foot, and shot with his other, and it was safety in the back of the net before the Newcastle man knew what it was all about.
Out For A Winner
There was much joy in the Everton camp for half a loaf was undoubtedly better than no bread. In fact there was a prospect of a victory. But Newcastle also had that kind of idea, and had it not been for some stern defence by Everton, Lowrie and Walker might have produced something between them which would have been anything but savoury to the Evertonian. With a few minutes to go Eglington was offered a “possible” but all he got out of it was a corner kick. Almost with the last kick of the game Dodds crashed in a close range shot which rattled against the woodwork, and the ball came back into play. Nine times out of ten it would have sped to the back of the net. Final; Everton 3, Newcastle United 3. Official attendance 55,529.
WEST BROM RES V EVERTON RES
August 21, 1948. The Liverpool Football Echo
Following hard pressure, by the home forwards Vickers beat Jones with a low drive after three minutes. It was some time before Everton got into their stride. The equaliser by Johnson followed a breakaway after 21 minutes, but before this Jones had saved well from Williams. Half-time; West Bromwich Albions Res 1, Everton Res 1. Final; West Bromwich Res 2, Everton Res 1.
STEVENSON AS COACH
August 23, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
To Look After Junior Players
Everton F.C., have appointed Alec Stevenson as coach to the junior players in the reserve side. He taken up his duties straight away and in future will travel regularly with the Central League team. Stevenson has been a grand servant to Everton since signing for them in January 1934, from Glasgow Rangers. Brilliant as a player, his wonderful ball control, and sometimes impish behaviour on the field has delighted the crowds. If he proves as good a coach as he has been a player, he will be a big assert in his new job. During his long association with Everton, Stevenson has made no fewer than 468 first team appearances (including war-time games, and scored 199 goals. He has been capped 16 times by Ireland in full internationals matches.
HARD LUCK DODDS
August 23, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
For some years now it has been customary for the football season to start in a blaze of sunshine, which suggested cricket rather than soccer, but Saturday was more like a November day with heavy rain showers and a dismal sky (writes Stork). Nevertheless I did not damp the ardour of the spectators, who showed that they were ready for their football under any circumstances. For Everton’s opening game there was an attendance close on 60,000 and they had a thoroughly good time, although their team was in danger of defeat at one point, yet might have won in the end. The greasy nature of the ground and ball made accuracy a ticklish affair, yet there were periods when sound combination was ever present. On their showing Newcastle are in their proper place in the First Division they produced a lot of skill and a punch near goal which kept Ted Sagar who entered upon his twentieth season with the Goodison Park club, on his toes. Lowrie was his great bugbear, for this £20,000 Welsh international forward, who could not find a place in last season’s promotion side, was a menace whatever he was on the ball. His shooting was prodigious and it was no surprise that he should score two goals. Sagar prevented him adding to his goal tally. The United cannot leave Lowrie out of the side again if he can maintain that form. But there were others in the United team who displayed a dangerous foot, the right ideas and a confidence that enabled them to get over an early body blow and eventually take over the lead. Actually United twice in the lead, and when the score was 3-2 in their favour it appeared that Everton were to suffer the ignomity of a home defeat as a start off to the season. Jock Dodds however, is just the sort to pull a game out of the fire. He has not played many better game than this and it would have been fitting had his drive in the last minutes flashed in off the crossbar to the back of the net instead of coming back into play. Jock had just previously taken the equaliser which, on top of his opening goal, was a grand day’s work. What of the others? They had a varying experience, something good sometimes, not so good, Fielding’s inside pass to Dodds to produce the equaliser was a fine bit of football thinking. Mcllhatton had a good second half and a poor first and seems to have fully regained his confidence. He had a strange partner in Powell, who got a dubante’s goal; well taken when Farrell put through a picture pass. Everton’s first goal came through a sliced clearance by Fraser and Dodds was sharp enough to take full advantage of it. Eglington found the ball running awkwardly for him. Farrell was here, there and everywhere, and Jones looked after Milburn, who got few chances. The quick thinking forwards gave the Everton defence a deal to think about, and Saunders and Dugdale had a full time job checking and thwarting a fast moving line. Gibson did not rise to the height I expected and Walker his goal apart, came out in patches. The United defence was not sure under stress but one must forgive slips with the ground carrying a topping of water and the ball so greasy that it needed perfect accuracy to deliver it to the required point.
ALEX STEVENSON’S JOB
August 23, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Alec Stevenson, Everton’s Irish international inside-forward has been given the task of looking after Everton’s young professionals, and on Saturday he journeyed to West Bromwich Albion with the Central League team. The move by the Toffees, must not be confused with any appointment of a coach to the club; in fact, the vacancy created when Jock Thomson moved to Manchester City remains. It will be “Stevie’s” job to help and advise the many young and promising professionals with the club, and definitely Everton could not find a better man for such a capacity.
DODDS ON MARK
August 23, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton and Newcastle certainty hit the goal-standard at Goodison where Jock Dodds relieved Blues’ concern by getting two goals. Colleague Radar sums up the game as follows; “Dodds splendid leadership crowned by two goals –in justice it should have been three – was perhaps the most encouraging feature of the Everton display. Scottish international Brennan was unable to matter Dodds any more than Tommy Jones could cope successfully with the quicksilver Milburn. “There were other lessons to be learned. Primarily am I concerned with Everton’s defensive make-up without, wishing to be hypercritical at this stage. Give full marks to the Lowrie-inspired, fast-moving, hard-shooting Newcastle attack, but at the same time there were on occasion glaring lapses in the Everton rearguard. The United goals came became a tendency to hold off the tackle, this giving Newcastle vital yards in which to reach shooting distance, Saunders and Dugdale impressed with their accurate clearance, but at times were, oddly out of tune. To Lindley fell the hardest half-back task –that of holding Lowrie who, however, got two goals. Walker getting the other. I rated Farrell the most secure Everton half back solid in defence and progressive in attack. Second important lesson is that the wingers must improve in the finishing. Both Eglington and Mcllhatton (he had a fine second half contrived to do much that was clever in a creative sense, but failed to crown their work with conviction. Apart from his nicely-taken goal, Powell’s was rather a quiet debut, but obviously needs time to settle. Fielding’s gave an in-and-out display, but his canny work made the third equaliser. Newcastle will be a power in the Division and Everton will have a good season if they tighten up those loopholes.
August 24, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton this morning set out on their longest tour of the season, during which nearly 2,000 miles will be covered –by motor-coach. If the Toffees can bring two points with them from the two games, we shall all be satisfied. Everton will not select their team until later, but I do not anticipate that there will be any changes in the side which drew with Newcastle. So far as tomorrow’s match is concerned, there is no denying that Everton face a tough task, for while they were drawing with Newcastle, Portsmouth were gaining a point at star-stubborn Preston 2-2. Duggie Reid getting both goals.
• Central League Match at Goodison Park tomorrow (Wed), Aug 25; Everton Res v Sheffield Wed Res. Kick-off 6-30pm., Admission Ground 9d; Boys and H.M. Forces (in Uniform) 6d. Stands 1/6 –
• Football at Bellefield, West Derby, tomorrow (Wed) Aug 25, Liverpool County Combination, Everton “A” v. Liverpool “A”. Kick-off 6.30 pm., Admission 6d.
BLUES AT POMPEY
August 24, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Everton are taking advantage of their next two away fixtures to give the players a little break from normal routine. They went by road today to Southsea for tomorrow’s evening game against Portsmouth, then make their way by easy stages to Baltburn, where they will stay for Saturday’s game against Middlesbrough. Portsmouth stayed well with a draw against Preston, at Deepdale on Saturday, and on their own ground Everton will find them a hard nut to crack. They had the next best record to Arsenal in home games last season, and only unaccountable lapses away kept them from a much higher place in the final chart. Douglas Reid is Pompey’s danger man. Possess of a kick like a mule, it is fatal to let this former Stockport forward see a clear way through for a shot. He got both the goals against Preston. Portsmouth are a sound rather than a brilliant side, with a nice balance in all departments, and a half-back line which beare comparison with the best. Everton will do well if they divide the points. The Blues took 14 players with them, the eleven who drew with Newcastle, plus Hedley, Grant and Wainwright. Portsmouth have decided to retain the changed forward formation which they tried against Preston when Froggatt was injured and had to go outside left so that their team reads; Butler; Rookes, Ferrier; Scoular, Flewin, Dickinson; Harris, Barlow, Reid, Phillips, Froggatt.
August 26, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
A mishap to Lindley, who pulled a groin muscle and was virtually a passenger at outside right for three-quarters of the game, seriously disorganised Everton against Portsmouth. Mcllhatton went inside right, and Powell dropped back to right half. Even making allowances for this blow, however, Everton were much below par, and never looked like making a fight of it. Even before Lindley’s injury Portsmouth had got well on top, and it appeared only a question of time, before they built up a comfortable lead. That they did not do so earlier was due to the ineptitude of the forwards to turn their opportunities to good account. When Portsmouth did settle down was no doubt about their all-round superiority and nothing would go right for the Merseyside. But for some magnificent goalkeeping by Sagar who received a great ovation from the crowd. Everton might well have experienced a much heavier defeat. Despite receiving a knock on his ankle just before half-time, which caused him pain throughout the remaining stages, Jones also did valiantly in defence, and played his part in keeping down the score to 4-0. Lindley will be out of the side for some time and Jones is so doubtful for the Middlesbrough game on Saturday that Humphreys has been instructed to join the party at Saltburn. Everton’s misfortune does not end there, however. Wainwright has had to return home owing to the series illness of his mother, and Saunders will not be fit for Saturday owing to an injured ankle. George Jackson was injured after 10 minutes in last night’s Central League game, and is at present in a Waterloo nursing home awaiting the result of an X-ray examination. It is suspect that he has a broken bone in the leg.
Position of Juliussen
Portsmouth F.C., state today that it is not certain yet that they will agree to part with centre forward Albert Juliussen, about whom Everton have inquired. They add that the talks have not got to the point of an actual offer, and that a decision either way is not likely for some days. Juliussen was transferred by Dundee to Portsmouth for £11,000 last March, but has been out of the side in Portsmouth’s two first games. The rather relaxing Southern climate is believing to be the reason why he has not settled down as well as expected.
EVERTON’S INJURY BOGY’
August 26, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton’s interest in Juliussen, the Portsmouth and former Huddersfield and Dundee centre-forward intensifies. There may be a conclusion to Juliussen’s transfer to Goodison Park within a few days. I do not expect immediate action, but negotiations are obviously well advanced. At Fratton Park last night I noticed Secretary Theo Kelly, of Everton, and manager Bob Jackson of Portsmouth, and directors in huddies-discussing what might have been important business while I saw Mr. Kelly having a word with Juliussen. When a deal advances to the stage of the buying club speaking to the player concerned than you can rest assured that it is practically clinched. Everton certainly need a little luck following their rather unfortunate start to the season –unfortunate altogether as far as our two clubs are concerned. We still, seek our first victory, for while Everton were being beaten 4-0 by Portsmouth last night. That’s Everton’s luck at the moment is out is proved by the fact that they played against Portsmouth last night for 80 minutes with Maurice Lindley a helpless passenger at outside right –he may not play for weeks –while Tommy Jones was injured early on to such an extent that Jack Humphreys has been ordered to travel to Nottingham today to join the party in readiness for Saturday’s match at Middlesbrough.
In addition Eddie Wainwright last night received a message from his Southport home that his mother was seriously ill and he had to dash home instead of continuing the tour. George Saunders had an injured ankle and will not play on Saturday, George Hedley taking his place, and George Jackson, the full back, playing for the central League side against Newcastle Res at Goodison Park, broke a leg and was take to a nursing home. The very fact that Everton had to play under such handicaps and that Aubrey Powell was limping long before the end accounts for the fact that they were beaten, but let us not brook the argument that had it not been for Ted Sagar and a deal of indifferent finishing the score would have reached double figures. Everton were never “coloured” in this game, and while one could forgive many lapses, because of the rearranged team, that would only be detracting credit from Portsmouth –one of the finest teams I have seen in twelve months –and I am not excepting Manchester United, Portsmouth was the perfect football machine in everything except finishing, but even allowing for that they contrived to make Sagar the busiest man on the field, and Sagar rose to the occasion as only he can, three saves in the first ten minutes being positively sensational. The first half saw Portsmouth practically shooting-in, thanks to the command their half-backs held on the game. They scored two goals that period through Jack Froggatt. Later Bert Barlow scored two goals but in the meantime Everton struggled on and throughout the game levelling only five shots at goals of which only one –a right-footer from Mcllhatton –was on the mark. This Ernie Butler saved brilliantly. It would be unfair to criticise Everton against such a brilliant football combination and in view of their misfortunes but apart from Sagar’s brilliance and the final whistle, deserving pats on the back go to Gordon Dugdale, Jack Mcllhatton, Aubray Powell, the tired to play inside right and right half all at once), Jack Dodds and George Saunders –for his second half.
August 27, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Everton have soon struck a troublesome crop of injuries and the enforced changes for tomorrow’s game at Middlesbrough will hardly enhance their chances. Middlesbrough’s high close-season signing was Roland Ugolini the Italian-born goalkeeper with the Scottish accent. Ugolini came to this country as a baby, was brought up in Glasgow and joined the Ayresome Park club from Glasgow Celtic. He made a fine debut in the game against Chelsea, as also did Blenkinsopp another summer signing, who used to be with Grimsby Town. Unless there is a late and unexpected change Middlesbrough will still be minus Wilf Mannion who has not yet re-signed. Like Liverpool with Stubbins. Middlesbrough have done all that is possible to make Mannion contented and are now taking a firm stand. Everton may be able to hold them to a draw, but I am not very optimistic. Everton will not decide their formations until later, but the line-out will probably be as below. Everton; Sagar; Hedley, Dugdale; Grant, Humphreys, Farrell; Mcllhatton, Powell, Dodds, Fielding, Eglington. Middlesbrough; Ugaini; Robinson, Hardwick; Bell, Whittaker, Belnkinsopp; Stuhler; McCormick, Fenton, Dicks, Walker.
• Everton Reserves v Chesterfield Res tomorrow
• Everton “B” v Orrell tomorrow
• Orrell v Everton “A” tomorrow
BLUES’ ATTACK LACKS PUNCH
August 28, 1948. The Evening Express
But Defence in Good Form
Middlesbrough Win With A Disputed Penalty Goal
Everton’s defence, with Sagar and Humphreys magnificent, prevented Middlesbrough’s clever attack from having a goal feast at Ayresome Park today, when the Borough were much the better football side. The entire Toffee’s rearguard played inspired football but the attack lacked fire and accuracy. It was a hotly disputed penalty after 27 minutes which enabled Fenton to give the Boro an interval lead, and opened the club’s scoring attack for the season. Everton did not have more than two shots on the target in the first hour of play, Ugolini being merely a spectator. This is Everton’s second defeat of the week, and if matters are to change there will have to be a vast improvement in attack. Everton, concluding their five-day tour, were forced to make three changes. Lindley, Jones and Powell were unfit following the midweek game at Portsmouth, and although Powell could have played at a pinch. Secretary-Manager Theo Kelly said the risk was not worth taking. Lello who journeyed specially from Liverpool yesterday, took the place of Powell, while Humphreys was at centre half and Grant at right half. Saunders had a fitness test this morning and passed O.K. both teams were seeking their first wins of the season and what is move Middlesbrough were seeking their first goal of the season, having lost at Chelsea and drawn at Birmingham. Important news of the day is that Middlesbrough may soon change their attitude regarding Mannion and may agree to transfer him. Middlesbrough; Ugolini, goal; Robinson and Hardwick, backs; Bell, Whittaker and Blenkinsopp, half-backs; Spuhler, McCormick, Fenton, Dicks and Walker, forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Grant, Humphreys and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Mcllhatton, Lello, Dodds, Fielding and Eglington, forwards. Referee; Mr. H. Jackson (Leeds). Middlesbrough dominated the opening exchanges and after Blenkinsopp’s free kick had crashed against a barrier of players, Humphreys and Co, stood firm against some fasts moving all-along-the-floor Boro’ raids. Lello at last got Everton moving but Mcllhatton’s centre was quickly cleared and away went Spuhler to drag the ball past Dugdale. He slipped it low inside for McCormack, whose shot, it low inside for McCormick whose shot, however, was checked by Humphreys.
Hit Face of Bar
Spuhler came again and this time his half centre, half shot curled against the face of the bar and ran away to safety. Everton were soon matching Middlesbrough on the point of constructive art, but twice Eglington failed to finish accurately. Saunders and Dugdale came through with some timely interventions, but Spuhler caught Everton on one foot when he moved to inside left for a quick shot which, however, he sliced rather badly. Grant raced ahead to level Everton’s first shot of the day, but he was well off the target. Then Eglington went to the goal line and tried to place the ball back to Dodds but Whittaker intervened at the last second. Humphreys held up Fenton when a goal seemed probable. Sagar made a safe catch just under the bar off a header by Spuhler, and then tipped over the top an awkward dropping header from Fenton. Middlesbrough were much the better team, although Lello and Fielding were doing nice creative work. In the first 25 minutes Ugolini touched the ball only once, and that was to take a goal kick.
In 27 minutes Everton were behind because of one of the most ridiculous penalty awards I have seen given in years. Fenton and Humphreys went up to head the ball, with Fenton backing into Humphreys. The Everton players seem dumb-founded when the referee awarded a penalty, but despite their protest he was adamant. Fenton scored with a right foot shot which the diving Sagar missed by hair’s breadth. Eglington was twice wrongly pulled up for offside when Everton were in full cry. Dodds seemed to have a chance but the ball spun between his legs, much to the relief of Whittaker. Everton improved towards the interval, when the forwards at last had some semblance of striking power. Ugolini was forced to cut out centres from Lello and Mcllhatton, while he was on the spot to deal with Mcllhatton’s corner. However, the Everton wingers had not been getting the ball across with any degree of accuracy. Lello was racing through from Dodd’s excellent pass when Hardwick appeared to foul him three yards inside the penalty area. Imagine Everton’s disgust when the referee ruled that the offence was outside the area, and Mcllhatton’s free kick sailed over. Eglington had an excellent chance right on half time but his centre sailed harmlessly into the crowd.
Half-time; Middlesbrough 1, Everton 0
It was a much brighter and more enterprising Everton we saw on resuming, with Mcllhatton crashing into form. He kept using the inside route and after receiving a helping hand from Dodds, the ball was slipped across for Lello to shoot first time, but the ball swung wide.
Easy For Defence
Mcllhatton tried to rally Everton with his enterprising but did not always receive the best response in fact Dodds and Fielding were both slow to challenge for the ball and this made it much too easy for the Middlesbrough defence. Blenkinsopp came across to hold up Lello a trip only four yards from goal, but again Everton were denied a clear-cut penalty. Blenkinsopp brought the Borough back into the game, and after grand work by Walker, Dicks shot from six yards hard along the floor, but Sagar dived to make a characteristic save. Sagar also saved from Walker but Ugolini was for the most part a spectator. There was a complete lack of punch about the Everton attack, although Lello was having a good day. The Boro’ attacked strongly with Dugdale lying injured, but they were slow to shoot and when at last McCormick did have a go he was inches outside. Fenton headed in magnificently from Robinson’s centre, but just as the ball was entering the net Sagar flung himself across the goal, and tipped the ball over the top. This was yet another example of Everton’s sternness in defence, which was vastly improved as compared with that at Portsmouth.
Off The Mark
Following a spell of midfield play with the Everton half-backs completely, in command, Mcllhatton worked at, opening for Lello to take a first time shot, but the ball swung high and wide. Dodds was not having a good day, and for the most part seemed content to remain on the fringe of things, thus making it, all too easy for Whittaker. Grant, who had never missed an opportunity for dashing through to become a sixth forward, now slipped away twice, only to find once again that Everton could not get to the open spaces for a shot. In the closing minutes, Everton tried to stage a shock rally, but tantalising the attack petered out with never a shot forthcoming. The only player in the Everton forward line to even attempt a shot in this game was Lello. Final; Middlesbrough 0, Everton 0
SAGAR AND POOR FINISHING
August 28, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Everton Had Stubborn Defence Against Lively Line Without Punch
Fenton’s Penalty Goal
Middlesbrough 1, Everton 0
It was a disputed penalty goal that Middlesbrough beat Everton. The Borough should have had early goals, but they faded out, and Everton without punch in attack gave little promise of an equaliser. Middlesbrough; Ugolini, goal; Robinson and Hardwick, backs; Bell, Whittaker and Blenkinsopp, half-backs; Spuhler, McCormick, Fenton, Dicks and Walker, forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Grant, Humphreys and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Mcllhatton, Lello, Dodds, Fielding and Eglington, forwards. Referee; Mr. H. Jackson (Leeds). Everton’s injured list is growing and at this period of the season it is a bad business. Apart from Jones and Lindley, there were other minor injuries, but they responded to treatment so there were only three changes in the Everton side. Powell could have played perhaps, but it was through wise not to take a risk, and Lello came in at inside right. A hitch in the negotiations with Portsmouth for the transfer of Juliussen has yet to be straightened out. There was a fine crowd –about 35,000 –at Ayresome Park for the opening fixture. Middlesbrough made a strong attack on the left wing, and Walker provided a centre which had every suggestion of a goal about it had there been a Middlesbrough man close up enough to accept the offering. Hardwick put a stop to Everton’s first adventure. Not only did he hold up Mcllhatton but he kept the ball in play, which sent his club mates on the attack once again, and Spuhler put a ball into the middle and Humphreys had to deal with Fenton to stop the winger. As it was Sagar had to come out to make a save. So far the Boro had been a very lively lot and Everton had to be alert in defence, Lello, who came from Liverpool only yesterday to join his clubmates, tried to get a ball through to Eglington, but Robinson nipped in first. Middlesbrough came again and Spuhler, with another perfect centre, put the Everton defence in jeopardy but it managed to survive. Almost in the next minute Everton were lucky when Spuhler centred and the ball glanced off the crossbar and away to safety.
No 1. Marksman
Middlesbrough had produced some excellent football, but they found a very stubborn Everton defence. At last Everton struck a smooth running style, and Eglington was sent away on the left wing, but failed to get his centre across. It was not long before Borough were back in the Everton half, and Spuhler from the inside left position shot outside. Spuhler by the way had been Middlesbrough ‘s most consistent marksman. So far, we had not had a shot from Everton, but the first effort came when Grant ran through to shoot from long range, but the ball travelled wide off the mark. Dugdale was kicking a good length ball. He tried to get his forwards away, and when Eglington broke through the Middlesbrough cordon there seemed possibilities when he pulled a ball back to Dodds. Whittaker, however, had sensed the idea and intervened successfully, Humphreys again held up Fenton when the Middlesbrough centre forward appeared likely to run through, and then Spuhler made a header that Sagar saved cleverly.
So far the balance of play had been with Middlesbrough and Sagar had to make a leap to punch away from Dicks. He also showed capable hands in collecting the corner kick. Then came a Borough goal –from the penalty spot for a foul on Fenton by Humphreys. It appeared to me that the Everton man had “armed” off Fenton. Fenton took the kick himself and although Sagar got his hands to the ball, Fenton’s drive was too powerful to keep out. The Borough’s Italian goalkeeper, Ugolini, had nothing to do up to this stage, so tightly were the Everton forwards held in check. Dicks failed to contact a centre by Walker. Eglington three times in succession was pulled up for off-side, Mcllhatton had got little change out of Hardwick, but at last he forced a corner, but the Scot put the ball straight into Ugolini’s hands. Had Middlesbrough taken all their chances they would have held a much bigger lead, for they were constantly on the attack and despite some grim work on the part of the Everton defenders the chances were there to be taken. Ugolini made another catch from Mcllhatton, but so far there had been no punch in the Everton attack. Middlesbrough were much faster on the ball than Everton, and their wing men showed how to get the ball in the centre. Near the interval Dodds gave Lello a beautiful through ball, and the inside right, springing to it like lightning was storming towards goal when he was brought down by Hardwick –well inside the Middlesbrough penalty area in my reckoning. The referee gave a free kick out-side the area, and Mcllhatton’s kick travelled over the bar. Almost on time Eglkington had a chance, but he emulated Mcllhatton sending the ball over the bar.
Half-time; Middlesbrough 1, Everton 0
I learned during the interval that Jack Humphreys was amazed at the penalty decision given against him. He claimed that Fenton was backing on to him and he had his arms in the air, and did not understand how he could be penalised. Middlesbrough re-started with a fast attack through their right wing, and for a minute or two they remained in the Everton goalmouth, but Sagar was not called on. Grant set the Everton attack moving, and Dodds gave Mcllhatton two excellent passes which had no result. Straight from the Borough came down in strength and Sagar had to save from Walker and was in the act of making another save when he was fouled. There was no question that the Borough were a very lively side, and they constantly had the Everton defence on the run. With more accurate shooting, they would have been comfortably ahead.
Mcllhatton and Lello got together and the action ended in the latter shooting wide. Much of the fire had gone out of the Borough, and Everton came more into their own. They were lucky not to be involved in a penalty award when Robinson tripped Lello. Then in a flash a breakaway by Middlesbrough was followed by a perfect piece of combination, a magnificent shot, and a miraculous save by Sagar. Walker was mainly responsible for this happening, and when he pushed a ball through to Dicks, the inside man hit a shot to the far side of the goal, but Sagar moved sideways at lightning speed and with his left hand made a superlative save. Mcllhatton moved inside in an effort to pierce the Middlesbrough defence, and while it had some effect it did not bring Ugolini into action. Fenton made one fierce drive which passed outside, but thrills were few. Fenton was again prominent with a shot and this time it was dead on the mark, but Sagar was there, confident, with his clearance. There was one occasion when the ball was handled about between the Middlesbrough forwards in tantalising fashion. The ball passed across the field at least twice before McCormick tried a shot. The lack of punch near goal of both sides was surprising.
Middlesbrough had by far the more chances but were unable to finish their approach work, Spuhler gave his supporters a heart throb when he headed with great deliberation to find that Sagar had the agility of a cat and the eye of a hawk. It was only those two factors which kept the ball out of the net. The Everton defence was still built on solid lines and it was as well Ugolini was not seriously tested, and so it was difficult to get any idea as to his real ability. He showed ability to kick a good length. Many people were leaving the ground about 10 minutes before the end –a proof of the lack of excitement. In the corresponding game of last year Everton brought off a surprise win. A corner by Middlesbrough was the only incident in some desultory play, Spuhler’s header bouncing on the top of the bar. Final; Middlesbrough 1, Everton 0.
EVERTON RES V CHESTERFIELD RES
August 28, 1948. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton made a series of attacks during the early stages. McCormick and Higgins going close to the mark. Jones saved two hot shots from Hill and Foster. In thirty minutes Chesterfield took the lead, McJarrow giving the keeper no chance. Just on the interval McCormick put Everton on level terms. Half-time; Everton Res 1, Chesterfield Res 1. Everton after five minutes of the second half drew head when Cameron netted. Later on Higgins was unlucky in not increasing the lead. Final; Everton Res 2, Chesterfield Res 1.
Orrell v Everton “A”
Everton scored through Lewis. Gavin gave the equaliser for Orrell. Orrell missed a penalty then Lewis made a good run and scored. Parker added another goal for Everton. Half-time; Orrell 1, Everton “A” 3
August 30, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
It is rare for a goalkeeper to go through an entire game without having to make at least one save from the opposing forwards, but this was Ugolini’s experience in Middbrough’s game with Everton, at Aryesome Park. Everton’s attack was easily mastered by the opposition defence, and had it not been for several grand saves by Sagar stern defence on the part of Humphreys, Dugdale and Saunders, Middlesbrough would have sailed to an easy victory (writes Stork). Middlesbrough opened in a manner which suggested a heavy defeat for Everton, but their forwards were no better when it came to turning opportunities to account than those of their rivals; in fact, they were worse for they had three times the chances of their adversaries who generally failed long before they reached the penalty area. The Borough have been shot shy for two seasons, and it would seem that they have not, learned their lesson, for they are still flippant after making openings by fast and progressive combination. They attacked almost throughout the first half, but they got their goal via the penalty spot decision which will rankle the Everton players, and Humphreys in particularly, for a long time. Humphreys was accused of pushing Fenton. His version is that Fenton backed on to him, but the referee would not listen to the appeal. It appeared a harsh verdict. In my opinion, Everton had a much more solid foundation for a penalty when Lello was brought down by Hardwick. It was not even a near thing. The incident was well inside the “box” yet the free kick was given outside. Middlesbrough were lucky that time and again sometime later when Robinson brought down Lello, so you see that Everton were distinctly unfortunate. I do not wish to infer that they deserved to win. They didn’t for a side that does not shoot does not deserve success. Their forwards were never at any time a menace to Middlesbrough, who were faster to the ball; more progressive, and much more sprightly than Everton. For their home game with Portsmouth on Wednesday. Everton hope that Powell may be fit. Tommy Jones is doubtful. Decision depends on the medical reports after he has been examined tomorrow.
August 30, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
There is no doubt that the Everton display at Ayresome Park was an improvement on that at Portsmouth, for the simple reason that there was so much added power in defence. We saw barriers where there had been loopholes; this being the main reason why the clever Borough forwards were kept to the penalty goal. Definitely Middlesbrough deserved to win by a wider margin, but they were slow to shoot. Everton on the other hand, were reluctant to shoot and only Cyril Lello would really “have a go.” There was no rhythm or “bite” about this Everton attack in which Mcllhatton gave the real support to Lello. I rated Everton unfortunate not to have penalties and without them they gave little prospect of scoring. Yes, it was a indifferent as that. However, to the brighter things, and outstanding were the displays of Gordon Dugdale, Jackie Grant, Ted Sagar and Jack Humphreys. Dugdale was a joy in his subjugation of the always-active Spuhler, while Humphreys first-time methods worried Mickie-Fenton more than somewhat. Grant was the personification of perpetual motion and was so on top of his own job that often he raced forward to try to give a lead to his own forwards. And Sagar? Yes, the real 100 per cent Ted who match after match stands defiant. Saunders had his worrying moments, but fared well, and Farrell’s was a purposeful display without being quite up to his real standard. From a team point of view there was a lack of spirit, but I think it needs only that first victory to re-kindle it. A win will bring back the old confidence to a “nervy” side. Incidentally, Aubrey Powell should be quite fit by Wednesday if needed.
EVERTON’S FORWARD FAILING THROWING HEAVY BURDEN ON DEFENCE
August 31, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Though Everton will be keen to register their first victory of the new season when they receive Portsmouth tomorrow, they will have to show more forward punch than they have in the last couple of games if they are to get the better of the visitors. While Portsmouth have no outstanding stars in their team, they are a very strong and workmanlike lot, with a dour defence and a sprightly forward line. In the clash at Pompey a week ago, Everton were soundly trounced 4-0. But for the brilliant work of Ted Sagar they might have suffered a much heavier defeat though one must remember that injuries upset then considerably. In that game the Blues attack was much below bar, as it also was on Saturday against Middlesbrough. This is no new development. Everton suffered the same last season, a side can hope to win matches without shooting, and “Stork” tells me that the number of shots Everton have delivered in their last two games could be counted on the fingers of a one-armed man –and even then he would have a finger or two left over. One comparison of this lack of forward punch and understanding is that defence is having to bear more than it’s fair share of the burden. Sagar has been carrying on from where he left off last winter, the saviour of his side and the rest of the defenders have done their parts well, but this cannot continue indefinitely without the strain being bound to tell. A convincing victory would give the forwards more confidence. The sooner it comes the better. Whether tomorrow will be the occasion remains to be seen. Portsmouth unbeaten, so far, will be cock-a-loop after last week’s victory, so that Everton’s task is not balance in their favour, though I wish I could feel more confident about that than I do. Handicapped by unfortunate injuries, Everton may not be able to pick their side, definitely until tomorrow. Lindley is out of the reckoning, Powell and Jones are very doubtful and others are nursing minor knocks. Portsmouth have played the same eleven in they three matches to date, but this time will have Bowler in place of their injured Flewin. Froggatt’s now operating at outside left, has brought increased effectiveness to their front line, and with Douglas Reid in the middle and Barlow at inside right. Portsmouth have been well among the goals this last ten days. Lieu-Commander George Clark, who referees, is a former Birkenhead institute boy and graduate of Liverpool University, who learned the ropes with the Liverpool County F.A. One of the best of our younger referee; he has handled many representatives matches. After serving in the Navy during the war he was recently appointed assistant secretary of University Colleague London. Portsmouth; Butler; Rookes, Ferrier; Scoular, Bowler, Dickinson; Harris, Barlow, Reid, Phillips, Froggart. Everton will doubtless renew their conversation with Portsmouth officials regarding Juliussen, but the information is that if he makes a move at all, which is not certain it may be beck to Scotland. Portsmouth are not seeking to hurry matters in either direction.
CLASSIC POMPEY’S VISIT
August 31, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton set out at Goodison Park tomorrow evening to record their first win of the 1948-49 season, and try and prevent the first “double” being recorded against them. Portsmouth standing second in the First Division table, provide the opposition. Everton have been disappointing start for their only point-from the six at stake was that at the result of the 3-3 draw with Newcastle United who have since dropped three out of four home points. Since that opening day the Toffees have played for 180 minutes without scoring a goal. The most encouraging feature of the Aryesome defeat was the tightening up of the defence, which compares with and I have seen so far. There is little doubt that the directors when they meet this evening will endeavour to bring more “punch” into the attack, which has been operating without confidence and with a tantalising shyness to shoot. In Portsmouth you will see a team which I think, will make a strong bid for the championship – a fast, incisive football combination possessing amazing staying power, and almost intense in the tackle. Herbert Barlow of 1939 vintage remains the brains of the attack, and while Duggie Reid must be marked down as a danger man, I think the ever-present menace is Jack Froggart, the versatile forward, who played in Italy with “Nobby” Fielding. Brilliant wing half-backs in Scoular and Dickinson on the flanks and Flewin in the centre, give Portsmouth a trio capable of harassing the best of attacks, and their backs Rookes and Ferrier are fast in recovery and astute in ball use. Add to them the good goalkeeping of Ernie Butler –he played with Tranmere Rovers during the war –and the sound forward play of Harris, an inside forward converted to an outside-right, and the young Phillips and you have a splendid all-round side and a Portsmouth X! Comparing favourably with their 1939 cup-winning combination. Portsmouth; Butler; Rookes, Ferrier; Scoular, Bowler, Dickinson; Harris, Barlow, Reid, Phillips, Froggart.