EVERTON WILL DO WELL TO GET A POINT FROM BURNLEY
December 2, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Everton should make the trip to Burnley with increased combined after their victory over Stoke and the improved displays put up in their more recent matches. They will find Burnley a difficult side to beat however. The Turf Moor club has not lost in its last six outings, and had a defence of strength and stability which will take a lot of circumstances. Few clubs have got more than one goal against it this season, and in seven of their games Burnley have kept a clean sheet. Against this, however, their attack is not particularly aggressive in front of goal. Like Everton, they often fail to turn good midfield approached work to the right use, and have averaged only a goal a game this season. That does not look at though Sagar and his colleagues are going to be unduly troubled. While victory would be an encouragement thing for the Blues a draw would be quite a useful performance against a side of Burnley’s calibre for the Turf Moor club is fifth from the top. With two goals in three appearances, Buckle has made a good start for Everton. May be continue in the same vein. All that is required now is for others in the attack to weigh in with goals as well. The team is unchanged from last week. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Dugdale; Farrell, Humphreys, Lello; Buckle, Wainwright, McIntosh, Powell, Eglington.
EVERTON IN A LANCS DERBY
December 2, 1949. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Everton have broken their spell of nonsuccess go to Burnley with an unchanged team, which, if playing as well as in the first half against Stoke City, should not come away without something tangible. Burnley are a splendid defensive force and lately they have made steady improvement so that they are only fifth from top, Everton refreshing forward tactics ad solidity in defence should enable the Cliff Britton boys to give a good show against his former club. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Dugdale; Farrell, Humphreys, Lello; Buckle, Wainwright, McIntosh, Powell, Eglington.
• Everton Res v. Bolton Res at Goodison
• Everton “B” v. Aintree S.S. at Bellefield
• Everton “D” v. St. Dominics, Earl of Derby Cup, at Bellefield
EVERTON BURN THEIR FINGERS IN MATCH WITH BURNLEY
December 3, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Burnley 5, Everton 1
Everton had first-half moments when they seemed able to get a point, but a hat-trick by Potts –mostly due to defensive mistakes –changed the game completely, and Everton finished almost thoroughly out of the picture. The match was played on a sticky mud-heap which lent itself to mistakes and hard, plugging football. Burnley; Strong, goal; Woodruff, and Mather, backs; Atwell, Cummings, and Bray, half-backs; Chew, Morris, Spencer (J.), Potts, and Hays, forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Farrell (captain), Humphreys and Lello, half-backs; Buckle, Wainwright, McIntosh, Powell and Eglington, forwards. Referee; Mr. A.C. Denham (Preston). Burnley played an unchanged side for the seventh successive match. It was a thoroughly bleak day with a ground which looked at the start as though it might churn up badly. The attendance at the start could not have been more than 15,000 to 20,000. Sagar had to pick up a skidding shot from Potts in a bright Burnley left-wing opening. Powell, who seemed determined to be unhurried and to keep the ball on the floor, began one good Everton right-wing move, but McIntosh was all at sea with his intended centre. Wainwright was spoken to after challenging Strong, as the goalkeeper picked up a swerving free kick by Lello. Then Spencer delivered a good length centre which Chew slashed across the goal face in a scoring effort. After eight minutes Potts gave Burnley the lead most unexpectedly. Sagar was about to pick up what appeared to be an easy ball down the middle when Potts intervened at the last second and slipped the ball beyond him. Everton tried hard to work the ball on the sticky surface and there was much promise in some moves begun by Powell but against that Burnley played much the more impressively, and already they had produced four times as many shots as Everton. Powell wheeled and cavorted time and again trying to find a hole in the Burnley defence which had scarcely been tested so far. Buckle once beat Mather with great artistry, but Everton still seemed very ineffective near goal. Eglington, who came into the middle and nearly “kindly” a ball difficult to control got the full force of Cummings clearance, and had to leave the field, for attention. The ball was beth heavy and greasy. He returned after a minute’s absence. At 21 minutes Buckle pushed up a pass from which Powell centred. Strong, at full length, pushing the ball away, but Wainwright taking a difficult chance, quickly hit the ball home with the goalkeeper on the floor. Wainwright, who was more a centre forward than an inside forward, hit another good shot, this time with his left foot, just wide of the angle, and Buckle sliding in as Strong picked up was also within hail of a goal. The Everton goal seemed to have shaken the Burnley defence more than somewhat, and Everton played with more fire in attack than they have for a long time. Chew, in one of Burnley’s less frequent attacks, hit a long shot skidding the far post. Farrell did all manner of useful spade and recovery work. Mather, mis-heading an Eglington centre, allowed McIntosh to make a bid for a headed goal, and the ball was travelling over the angle as Strong made a desperate attempt to cover it. Even Farrell, with a thirty yards free kick, caused Strong concern, the ball slipping off the pitch alarmingly. A Powell-Eglington-Buckle-McIntosh move all but produced a leading goal, and it really deserved one. Buckle was having yet another grand match. Sagar now had to suffer the difficulties of Strong, and when Morris shot Sagar only just managed to stop the ball. When at 32 minutes Burnley made it 2-1 Sagar was at fault. Potts from out in the backwoods –he must have been 30 yards out –swung in a tentative sort of shot and to everyone’s surprise Sagar stood rooted as it swerved its way into the net. A good Burnley attack was making too many holes in a determined Everton defence for anyone’s comfort, and they seemed so much faster at the business end of their movements. The Burnley half backs were taking charge, too, and Saunders and Dugdale found their job anything put to their liking. When Potts scored again at 40 minutes, the Everton defence was badly at fault. Potts beat three men in a persistent dribble, and then rounded Sagar, who had come out, and tapped the ball home. A great individualistic goal, but one which could never he scored against a defence which was doing its job.
Half-time; Burnley 3, Everton 1.
Everton started the second half, brightly enough with Lello holding the ball against all comers and Powell flashing a snap shot not so very wide of the target. The ball was so heavy that Strong was inclined to slip goal kicks out to Woodruff outside the penalty area and let him take them upfield, but Eglington nipped this notion in its early stages. With the ball yards away Farrell and Potts got at cross purposes after Farrell had chased the Burnley inside forward to the opposite touch-line. Both were spoken to by the referee. Potts slid yards along the ground when trying to head a goal from a corner. It was a match which now jogged along almost complacently, with Everton not shaping as though they would narrow the issue. At this point however, Morris with only Sagar to beat, lobbed the ball outside when it would almost have been easier to score. Have deflected a lighting low centre from the right at 68 minutes to give his side a 4-1 lead, and this, I think, was the end so far as Everton were concerned. The only Everton shot for a while was from Eglington, who had taken the ball down from inside his own half, but he sent it wide. Dugdale who was having a bad time, now conceded a corner when attempting a reverse pass to Sagar, and Saunders outstretched foot stood between Potts and goal No. 4. Potts was having a great match in spite of the fact that like Mary’s lamb, Farrell followed him where ever he went. Four goals for Burnley spectators were a riot of goals, but they were to get more for just before time Spencer headed a fifth. Bray was spoken to after a foul on Wainwright, and Powell made a good glancing header, for which Strong was right on the spot. Final; Burnley 5, Everton 1.
• Albert Geldard has signed for Darwen, after two years out of football, for the Lancashire Combinaton club.
December 3, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton’s Position Puzzles An Exile
I am an Evertonian living in London. I saw Everton playing Chelsea, and simply can’t understand why they are so near the bottom of the League. Their football was a picture to watch. What a fighting spirit they have! They battled back in grand style and were very unlucky to lose. A word of praise also for Liverpool. They are without doubt, the finest team that has been on view in London this season. Every Liverpoolian has reason to be proud of the Reds. Keep it up, Liverpool, and good luck to the Blues. – James Hughes, Chalk Farm Road, Camden Town, London N.W.1.
I was interested to read about the proposed match between former Liverpool and Everton players for the benefit of the finances of South Liverpool. What is really required at Holly Park is a team of present day players who are capable of winning matches for the club in the Cheshire League. Neither manager Ted Savage nor anybody else could pick a winning team from the present assortment. Don’t tell me good players cannot be obtained. We are getting tired of hearing how successful ex-South players are with other clubs.
Tommy Jones Query
Now that it has become obvious that Tommy Jones is being deliberately omitted from Everton’s team, isn’t it time an explanation was forthcoming? With all due respect to the player preferred to him, surely there is a vast difference in quality between the two. This, plus the commanding influence of Jones, are good reasons why he should be in his rightful place in the senior side. It is a pity that Everton have not the same faith in him that the Welsh selectors have. Many thanks for the interesting reading in the Football Echo. I haven’t seen anything to compare with it –F. McKeown, L’Pool 14.
EVERTON RES V BOLTON RES
December 3, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton Reserves; Burnett, goal; Clinton and Hedley, backs; Woods, Jones (T.G.), Grant, Corr, Higgins, Falder, Hampson, and Parker, forwards. Bolton W Reserves;- Elvey, goal; Banks, and Bingley, backs; Lee, Matthewson, and Edwards, half-backs; Simm, Corfield, Struthers, Hernon, and Webster, forwards. Referee; Mr. F.S. Jackson (Preston). Everton fielded a strong side today and included T. Jones, Higgins and P. Corr. The Blues held command of the play. Corr and Higgins displaying fine tackles. In the 23rd minutes Everton took the lead through Corr from a Parker centre. Bolton did not have matters their own way by any means owing to the good work by T.Jones. Near the interval Falder was unlucky with a perfect header. The goalkeeper saved brilliantly at the expense of a fruitless corner.
Half-time; Everton Res 1, Bolton Res 0.
When the second half opened the ground was slippery. This made ball control difficult. The first real shot came from Woods, who let fly from fully 25 yards. The Bolton goalkeeper saved finely. Final; Everton Res 1, Bolton Res 0.
EVERTON TO EXPLAIN
December 5, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
]the Everton extraordinary general meeting called for by the shareholders Association has been fixed for Wednesday, December 21, at the Law Association Rooms, 7.30 when the directors will be calling on to explain Everton’s present position. Meantime the side through the coincidence of many clubs at the bottom of the table doing well, loser’s ground by the defeat by five goals to one at Burnley. Five-one at any time is a nasty blow, but to this case it is doubly aggravating because after being a goal down Everton rallied so well as to get the equalizer and threaten to take the lead. Once this spell of first half fire had died away the side reverted to its old form, without much conviction and fight and in the end beaten as soundly as the score suggests. Everton made many mistakes. They lost goals because of defensive errors – Potts scored a first half hat-trick, any goal of which in different circumstances might have been “dealt with,” and the losers made the mistake on using the mud bath centre of the field rather than try to keep the ball on the wings where than try to keep the ball on the wings where the going was less sticky, writes Contact. Farrell, Lello and Buckle all played well in the first half though Potts was really a Farrell responsibility, but Wainwright main help came for the defence which he frequently aided in last minute recovery. Burnley are still a very hard side to beat on their own ground. They have a good young centre forward in Spencer; a clerk at a local brewery and with Mather and Potts and Chew and other original playing as well as ever the possibility of them winning a cup of a League championship must not be ruled out. In which case popular Frank Hill would be rewarded, ads manager by an early honour. If anyone can solve the mystery of why Everton lose whatever sparkle they posses during the second half he will have gone some way to discovering what is wrong with the side. I must confess that their better moments in this match were quite impressive and that if they could have been maintained the result would have been much more comforting.
EVERTON F.C’S GET TOGETHER’ CALLED FOR DECEMBER 21
December 5, 1949. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
The directors and shareholders of the Everton Football Club will meet on Wednesday, December 21, for the extraordinary general meeting requisition by 87 of the shareholders holding not less than one-tenth of the capital of the company. The meeting is the outcome of a meeting of the Shareholders Association held a few weeks ago, and according to the officials noticed which shareholders received today, is for the following purpose. To afford the directors an opportunity of explaining to the shareholders the reasons to the present position of the club which the reguisitionistd regard unsatisfaction and for the directors to receive the views of the shareholders thereon.” It is many years since such a meeting was held by Everton and comes at a time when the club is having a luckless run. The obvious reason for the present position in that Everton have fewer points than other clubs – a fact which the directors and players more than anytime regard as unsatisfactory. This is in no way a trials for the great Everton blub. Shareholders will be able to say their pieces but so will the directors under Chairman Dr. Cecil S. Baxter who I know have worked consciously and diligently in the causes of Everton. The directors have the complete answer to any points which may be raised and will be only too pleased to listen to any constructive criticism which can help Everton recapture the glorious of the 1938-39 season when Everton were the finest team in the land.
JUST 10 MINUTES
December 5, 1949. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Let us turn to the sadder story which colleague Radar brings back from Turf Moor and which states; “For an all-too-short a period –about ten minutes –in the first half, during which Wainwright scored his first goal since September 3 hat-trick against Huddersfield, Everton looked as if they might take charge of a game played in atrocious weather conditions. The Burnley defence did not wilt pressure and there in lies one vital difference between the sides, for Everton’s rearguard was found wanting when the big, test came. Even Ted Sagar made errors he would not do normally, although I sympathies with him because his job was made more difficult by the failure of his colleagues to make it clear what were their intentions. Neither half-backs nor full backs, were equal to the task of mastering five strong, quick-moving forwards who found each other with remarkable accuracy. For Dugdale it was a most unhappy day for he could not fathom the Chew puzzle and Saunders had little more success against Hays. Skipper Farrell tried almost frenziedly to pull his side together but despite everything he did the clever Potts still contrived to hit three goals –all the result of slips on the part of the defence, which was too often caught off balance or out of position. Humphries could not quell the speedy Spencer and Lello after a bright opening, shared in the general second half mediocrity. In an attack which I thought adopted faulty tactics by attempting to hold the ball close and to plough a way through the middle. Wainwright never gave up the struggle and Eglington gave a considerably improved display. Buckle did any number of useful things in the first half but McIntosh never could elude the watchful Cummings and Powell spoiled a lot of good work by a tendency to hold up the line. This was a struggling straggling Everton.
ROVERS DROP “JULIE” CHASE
7 December 1949. The Dundee Courier.
At their meeting last night Raith Rovers directors went into the question of the transfer of Albert Juliussen from Everton. After reviewing things from all angles, it was decided to let the matter drop meantime. The ex-Dundee centre is at present player-manager of the North-East of England club Consett, but is still on Everton's books at fee of £10,000. The Fife directors are keen to add punch to their forward line, and they have one or two likely players in view.
EVERTON AND QUIGLEY
December 8, 1949. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Manager Cliff Britton, at Everton, stated today that the club definitely is interested in Eddie Quigley, the Sheffield Wednesday inside-forward for whom the Wednesday are prepared to take cash offers.
BLUES MUST WIN
December 9, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Everton’s position in the League means they must make every effort to get maximum points from their remaining home matches. They cannot be satisfied with a division of the points at Goodison unless, of course, they start to win away matches of which, at the moment there does not appear to be very brilliant hopes. Sunderland are not a strong away side, having won only one match on their “out” engagements. While Everton will have to put their best foot forward, they have a reasonable chance of hositing a winning flag so long as they take their chances without hesitation and keep going at full strength to the last minute. They have lost games this season through fading out in the closing stages. This match is of outstanding interest for all football followers because it will mark the equaling by Ted Sagar, of Elisha Scott’s record, put up for Liverpool, of 429 Football League appearances. This is a wonderful achievement, particularly bearing in mind the war-time status of six years, Everton have never had a more valuable or loyal servant. In due course one hopes Sagar’s 21 years as a Goodison player will be signalized in suitable fashion. The only change in the Everton side is T.G. Jones for Humphreys at centre half. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Dugdale; Farrell, Jones, Lello; Buckle, Wainwright, McIntosh, Powell, Eglington.
Reserves X1 (v. Leeds at Elland Road); Burnett; Moore, Hedley; Woods, Falder, Lindley; McNamara, Higgins, Corr, Hampson, Parker.
Sunderland; Mapson; Sterling, Hudgell; Scotson, Walsh, Wright (A.), Wright (T.), Broadis, Davis, Shackleton, Reynolds.
• Everton “B” v. Runcorn Ath, at Bellefield
QUIGLEY THINKS IT OVER
December 9, 1949. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Eddie Quigley the Sheffield Wednesday inside-forward, who is on the transfer list at £25,000, states that he will need some time to think over the prospect of joining Everton, -or one of the other four clubs interested –Portsmouth, Preston, North End, Wolves and Cardiff City. Manager Cliff Britton of Everton had a long and amicable chat with Quigley in Sheffield yesterday and will be contacting the Wednesday club again, but when the transfer transpire depends entirely on Quigley himself.
SAGAR WILL EQUAL RECORD;
December 29, 1949. The Evening Express
Jones Back in Everton X1
Sunderland At Goodison
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Ted Sagar’s 429th Football League appearance; Tommy Jones’s return to the League field. Sagar will today equal the amazing record of another great Merseyside goalkeeper, Elisha Scott, of Liverpool – a standing tribute to a golden career stretching over 20 years, during which Ted has proved himself one of the greatest clubmen ever to wear the Everton jersey. Sagar is assured of a glorious tribute from the spectators, who gather to see Everton face Sunderland at Goodison Park. Everton, who will be seeking their second victory since September 3, bring back to centre-half Tommy Jones, the Welsh International, in place of Humphreys, the side otherwise being unchanged. This will be Jones’s first game since November 5 when he played at West Bromwich Albion, so he has been out for four matches. That is the only change in the side beaten at Burnley. Sunderland will be without Willie Watson, the England halfback, but feature Ivan Broadis and Len Shackleton their two high priced inside forwards. Sunderland are a trifle inconsistent, but have plenty of punch in attack, although they have conceded only two goals fewer than Everton. Everton should win provided their forwards reproduce the form shown in the first half against Stoke City whom Everton beat two weeks ago. This should be a stern, interesting test starting at 2.15 p.m, and with Everton battling hard to get away from the lowly positions in the table. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Dugdale; Farrell, Jones, Lello; Buckle, Wainwright, McIntosh, Powell, Eglington. Sunderland; Mapson; Sterling, Hudgell; Scotson, Walsh, Wright (A.), Wright (T.), Broadis, Dvis, Shackleton, Reynolds.
EVERTON LUCKLESS IN VITAL HOME TEST AGAINST SUNDERLAND
December 10, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton 0, Sunderland 2
It was once again a case of missed chances. Everton had three in the first half. They refused them, so that Sunderland’s two goals carried the day. Everton; Sagar (captain), goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Farrell, Jones, and Lello, half-backs; Buckle, Wainwright, McIntosh, Powell and Eglington, forwards. Sunderland; Mapson, goal; Stelling and Hudgell, backs; Scotson, Walsh, and Wright (A), half-backs Wright (T.), Broadis, Davies, Shackleton, and Reynolds, forwards. Referee; Mr. F.B. Coultas (Hull). The visit of Sunderland to Goodison Park brings back happy memories for it was the Roker team which helped to contribute to the best ever seen on Merseyside. Since then the fortunes of both clubs have dropped considerably. Today was an occasion, for Ted Sagar was making his 429th League appearance which equals the record set up by the one and only Elisha Scott. Sagar was given the honour of captaining the side for this, and allowing for the early kick-off the attendance was not at all bad. Everton, playing towards the Gwladys Street goal, immediately went into action and Hudgell was guilty of slicing his clearance, but the error was covered up by Walsh.
Easy Chance Missed
Nevertheless, Everton came again and when Walsh passed back to his goalkeeper there seemed a possible chance that McIntosh would beat Mapson to the ball. But such was not the case, and it became Sunderland’s turn to attack. They did so through T. Wright, whose square pass was speedily disposed of but only temporarily, for the North-Easterners returned and Jones and Davies went up for the ball together and Sagar had to make a catch. So far the exchanges had been interesting, and one or two of them dangerous none more so than when McIntosh challenged the Sunderland goalkeeper and both went down. This left Wainwright in possession, but the Everton inside forward seemed to stub the ground, as he attempted his shot at what was an open goal. This was a chance if ever there was one.
McIntosh was limping slightly, and went out on the left wing. Shackleon and Reynolds were prominent when the England inside forward pushed a ball out to his partner, who was able to beat Saunders, cut in, and whip across a centre which had danger written all over it, but Jones disposed of it, and then it was Everton’s turn again. It was fluctuating football play being in one half one second and in the other next, and when Buckle slipped a ball right over in the far side of the field McIntosh headed it into the Sunderland goal area, but there was no Everton man handy enough to turn a good chance into something concrete.
Too Near To Be Nice!
A mis-pass by Jones led to a Sunderland attack, and before it was cleared they secured a corner. This was well taken by T. Wright, and Davis showed good heading ability when he nodded the ball against the Everton crossbar. I think Sagar had the ball covered in any case, but it was too near to be nice. A free kick to Everton saw Jones crash the ball against a Sunderland line-up, and when it came out to McIntosh, still at outside left, the best he could do was slew the ball outside. Lello, after making a particularly good intervention, helped to make progress with a ball that Powell side-headed to McIntosh, who tried to return the compliment, but he found himself outnumbered. Sunderland, however, had always appeared more dangerous than Everton, and at 18 minutes they drew first blood, and it was Shackleton who provided the opportunity for T. Wright to score with a first time effort, the ball passing wide of Sagar’s right hand.
Buckle Hits Crossbar
Almost immediately afterwards the Sunderland goal had a lef-off when Buckle from far out, cracked the ball against the crossbar. The rebound was of no value to Everton, for no calls were made upon Mapson. Saunders put our hearts in our mouths when he put back a fast ball to Sagar from close range. It was well that the Everton goalkeeper was fully prepared for it. McIntosh was again back at centre forward. While there was plenty of good approach work there was little shooting by Everton. Jones was busy heading away centres from both Sunderland wings, and T. Wright tried a repeat order with another long ball from the left, but this time got too much undercut to his effort, and the ball passed over harmlessly. Mapson fisted out a good effort by Wainwright, but Buckle, who picked up the clearance, was unable to find power enough to drive the ball back into the Sunderland net. Buckle took a throw-in, and dropped the ball just in front of Wainwright. The Everton inside right tried a quick shot, and the ball went soaring across the Sunderland goal face.
T. Wright showed speed and ball control, when beating Dugdale, and was unlucky to run the ball over the dead-ball line. Everton had their chances, however, for Powell put Wainwright through, and it seemed long odds against Mapson saving the situation. The Everton forward ran the ball too close to the goalkeeper, and his short shot was saved. Wainwright did something similar almost in the next minute, again shooting straight at Mapson. Another corner came Sunderland’s way, and Sagar had to fist out Reynold’s flag kick when surrounding by a host of players. Broadis tried a long surprise effort which Sagar saved, but there was no denying that so far Sunderland had been the better side. ]
Everton got a free kick for a foul on Eglington, and this led to an enthusiastic Everton advance which finally came to an end with a Buckle shot which passed wide of it’s mark. Dugdale and Broadis went to the ball at one and the same time, with the result that the Sunderland man seemed to be hurt. This was the forerunner of a Sunderland attack which ultimately won a corner. T. Wright took it, and Davies running in scored with a fine header, the ball travelling wide of the Everton goalkeeper. Time 41 minutes. This was a heavy burden for Everton to shoulder. Sunderland however, were still not satisfied that two was enough, for they went out for further goals, but their shooting lacked the necessary accuracy.
Half-time; Everton 0, Sunderland 2.
Everton resumed full of promise, and after taking two quick corners, Buckle came along with a left foot shot which was only inches off the mark. Mapson went dashing across his goal in case of eventualities, but he was not needed. Sunderland having got over those few hectic Everton moments, took a hand themselves, and Broadis launched one shot right across the Everton goal.
More Everton Thrust
Eglington made a long run in which he best more than three men, but his final pass went to a Sunderland man. Still Everton were definitely showing greater thrust and driving power, and when Farrell lobbed a ball well inside the Sunderland goal area, Wainwright was only just stopped in the nick of time. There was another stoppage for an injury, and then Wainwright took a corner from Hudgell. This was well placed by McIntosh, but the Sunderland defence was able to keep their goal intact. Sunderland were not nearly so good as they were in the first half, yet Sagar had to save a very deliberate shot by Broadis. Everton at this point were trying all they knew, and they did not have the best of luck when Buckle put a ball close in to the Sunderland goalmouth, and Powell only failed by a fraction to get the ball past Mapson, who had no time to save with his hands, but did so with his foot. The crowd were cheering on their favourities, and Everton were responding. But the Sunderland defence gave nothing away, though at times it seemed to be unsettled under pressure. Hudgell was caught napping when he conceded a corner. He could not have known that the ball had struck one of his own men, for he stood and watched the ball go over. Powell’s centre was of the hanging type, but it proved of no real danger to Sunderland. Sunderland were now returning to something more like the form of the first half, and after T. Wright had rounded Dugdale he slipped a ball to Davies, who made a hopeless hash of it by scooping it over the bar.
Sagar Is Alert
Wright used the long cross-field pass which Reynolds tried to ankle beyond Sagar, unsuccessfully, of course, but nevertheless quite a good try. Tommy Wright gave Sagar a warm handful and hereabout Sunderland were having just as much of it as Everton. Jones neatly trickled Davies with a back-heeled effort, and Sunderland’s defenders were easily lulled into putting the ball out of play on the slightest pretext of an Everton attack.
Third Centre Switch
Buckle was now at centre forward, which meant that Everton had three centre forwards during the course of the game. Another corner came to Sunderland but this was willfully wasted. Much of the interest had gone by now because there were no real thrills, and very few really good football moves at this stage. Saunders twice stepped into the breach to stop the clever little Reynolds. Just on the finish Everton made a concerted effort to reduce the arrears’ and after several had found their shots blocked Jones shot a foot or so outside the upright. Final; Everton 0, Sunderland 2. Official Attendance; 33,329.
LEEDS RES V EVERTON RES
December 10, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton were soon off the mark. Within two minutes they took the lead, Parker easily placing the ball into the net from a centre by McNamara. After defending stubbornly for a long period Everton took up the running. Higgins receiving the ball on the edge of the penalty area, gave Dewick no chance with a grand drive. Burnett saved at least two certain goals with spectators saves. Half-time; Leeds R 0, Everton R 2. In the second half Leeds attacked with vigour. Burnett continued to give a great display in the Everton goal. Everton had to rely on an occasional breakaway. Leeds had little difficulty in preventing any danger to their goal.
St Helens v. Everton “A”
There were about 1,000 spectators present when Everton kicked off with a strong wind in their favour. Lewis was quick to take a chance but Williams the Town goalkeeper brought off a good save. Lewis had five free kicks awarded against him in the first ten minutes for offside. Donovan sent a lovely shot into the goalmouth from 40 yards out but the strong wind lifted it over the bar. Bretton sent in a centre and Brown sent the ball a foot wide of the post. Dixon opened the score for St. Helens. A few minutes later Garner scored again –both from a corner kick by McCann. Dixon playing his first game following a fractured jaw came into collision with an Everton back and had to leave the field with a facial injury.
Half-time; St. Helens 2, Everton “A” 0
St Helen returned with ten men, Dixon having been taken to hospital. The home team went on the attack but the Everton defence held out. O’Neill made a good save from a shot by Brown.
A DEFEAT WITH REPERCUSSIONS
December 12, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 0, Sunderland 2
By Leslie Edwards
The blow Sunderland struck at Everton, on Saturday, was doubly heavy and may have repercussions at a later date. Were Sunderland a good side we could perhaps overlook the defeat, but they were not and that was the vexing part of it. The game was anything but epic in fact it was a tragedy for Everton who had the opportunity to win. Why did they not? The answer comes readily as it so often has where Everton have been concerned this season. The forwards “fell down” at the crucial factor of the game –shooting. I am getting tired of saying that but it is forced on me. Three goals should have been Everton’s portion in the first half. That is no exaggeration, but not having taken one of them Everton cannot complain that Sunderland accepted one from considerably fewer chances. Having seen their opponents allow chances to pass by Sunderland took a great belief in themselves and scored at 18 minutes. They should have been fighting against adversity in the form of a “hat-trick” if Wainwright had been in his usual shooting form, for the three goals he missed were gift-edged. Wainwright had the opportunity to retrieve himself, but twice he carried the ball too close to Mapson. I omit the occasion Everton hit the crossbar for that was counterbalanced by a similar happening to the Everton woodwork.
Everton’s defensive plan was not so sure as usual. Where was the cover so necessary in modern football? One cannot entirely blame the forwards although they are the men who are expected to win games. T. Wright goal was due to the sick pass by Shackleton which had the Everton defence open and found the Sunderland winger on his own. Wright simply hit the ball with his left foot without hesitation and it was goal number one. Sunderland’s second goal came at 41 minutes from a corner. Davis seemed to be left unattended when T. Wright flung his flag kick into the goalmouth. The scorer sneaked up and headed the ball beyond Sagar. It needed some stiff Sunderland defence to curb the fighting Everton in the second half, but for all their pressure they could not muster a consolation goal between them. All sorts of switches were made to bring power into Everton’s forward line. McIntosh started at centre forward, moved because of injury, and then followed Eglington. Wainwright and Buckle but the result was the same. Mapson had to make some clearances but they were mainly from long shots or balls from the wing. Sunderland seemed faster to the ball, used the long pass to the wingers. Sagar was made captain for the day on the occasion of his 429th League appearance which equals Elisha Scott’s record.
EDDIE QUIGLEY AND EVERTON TALKS
December 12, 1949. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Eddie Quigley, the much-sought forward of Sheffield Wednesday, whom five clubs are anxious to secure in time for the Christmas matches and cup ties, is in Liverpool today discussing the possibilities of his joining the Everton club. Do not expect anything definite right away, for Quigley intends travelling on to Preston North End for similar talks, and then he will go back home to reflect on all angles. Quigley who has on him a price “tag “of £25,000, wants to make sure that his next more will be his last so he is not going to hurry-Wolves, Portsmouth and Cardiff City are other clubs who hope to exchange a cheque for Quigley.
Everton’s position has become more urgent following the 0-2 defeat at the hands of Sunderland, while injuries have stepped in to increase the difficulties. Jack Humphreys damaged his knee when running around the ground on Friday. The knee is now in plaster and Humphreys will have to keep it on for at least three days. Wainwright received severe bruising of a thigh, and McIntosh has muscle trouble. Hours can improve the outlook. But after deep consideration and in the knowledge that Everton’s poor finishing contributed to this latest defeat, I am certain that the main difficulty lies in defence and not in attack.
Everton should have had it all sewn up in 15 minutes and although they endeavored to stage a second half rally the Roker defence simply refused to be ruffled or flurried, and the longer it went the more commanding did Walsh and company becomes so that Sunderland’s lead –won through Wright and Davis goals – looked perfectly secure. Trouble is that the goals should have been prevented, and it was sheer inaction that allowed the diminutive Davis to dart in to head home a Wright corner which was marked “Everton” from the “off.” Sympathies for Eddie Wainwright whose field play was so amazingly good, and yet who was so luckless in front of goal. Tommy Eglington and Ted Buckle, too, did grandly in a much switched attack. Cyril Lello, was as good a wing half-back as was Arthur Wright and that is high praise, while Saunders was rather upset by the reaction following Shackleton’s clever drawing of big hearted Farrell into false position. Everton had more of the game territorially without assuming that Sunderland menace. Still Sunderland never had to face such strong defence as did Everton, and, in fact, their own speed and power exposed obvious Everton weaknesses. Everton have a chance to retrieve the position somewhat when on Saturday Middlesbrough are at Goodison. This is one game the Blues must win.
HOME IS NOT HOME
December 12, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Nine points out of a possible 20 in Everton’s home record this season the only victories they have won at Goodison Park being against Newcastle Utd, Huddersfield Town and Stoke City. This makes dismal reading. It is of no satisfaction to say they should have won some of the others. They didn’t and so the points went to their opponents and the outlook is getting blacker and blacker. One naturally expects a team to win at home, if they can’t how are they to win away? With all the advantage of a home fixture –and there are several –the points be half way in the home club’s pocket. Everton’s position is becoming parlous. Look at it whichever way you will, it has got to be realized that Everton have a tremendous task ahead of them, and it will not be helped by the forthcoming Cup-tie, which add to their already heavy burden. There is only one thing wrong with the “Blues” team and that is their ineffectiveness near goal. Many a time they have played better football than their adversaries, but slipped up on the most important factor-goals. Why is it that good footballers, who can break down a defence, fall in their delivery of a shot? Is it that Everton have lost their confidence, of that they are frightened to take a risk because of their position? It looks like it. On chances, Everton should have been leading Sunderland at the half stage, for three glorious openings were refused; aye, refused by one of the most reliable shots in the team –Eddie Wainwright. A goal in the early moments would, I feel sure, have had a shattering effect upon the Roker club, but it was not to be. Over-anxiety may have been the cause of Wainwright’s failure. It is understandable with the position as it is, for nothing succeeds like success, and Everton have had very little of that. Everton started off with distinct promise; made far more openings than Sunderland despite the latter’s better-quality football, but those misses lay heavily on their minds (write Stork). Sunderland were far from world-beaters but they could, and did, accept openings more difficult ones than those that Everton frittered away. When T. Wright and Davis scored their goals the Everton defence had not covered up as well as it might. No one seemed to mark Davis when Wright was taking his corner-kick, so he was able to run in and head a good goal. Two goals against Everton these days is a big lead; it proved too much for them at all events. They tried hard to whittle it down in the second half, when Sunderland obviously concentrated on retaining their lead, and by sound defence were able to do so. Mapson, Birkenhead born played no small part in Sunderland’s success, but even he would admit that he had his lucky moments when Wainwright twice shot straight at him when he was lying prone on the ground. I am told that Sunderland have a habit of falling away after the first half. They certainly were nothing like the team in the second half that they had been in the first when their football as fast, clever and thrustful which kept the Everton defence chasing around, and not always successfully. No, it was a bad day for Everton, who are allowing too many goal chances to pass by in these testing days. Sagar, who was captain for the day was not to be blame for either goal –admirably taken by the scorers.
Jack Humphreys, who damaged his knee in training last Friday has had to have it put in plaster, and will have to wear the cast for three of four days.
Eddie Wainwright, Everton’s forward, was married today to Miss Mabel Pritchard at All Soul’s Church, Southport. Club-mates Saunders, Eglington, Farrell and Humphreys formed a “guard of honour.”
BLUE AND WHITE RIVALS HAVE BEEN AN EVERTON CUP BOGY’
December 13, 1949. Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
They Hope to Beat It Against Queen’s Park Rangers
The only blue and white combination of colours Everton like in the F.A. Cup is their own. Other combinations have proved unlucky for them in the Cup in recent years, and in the third round in January 7 they will have to play in the first change colours of white against Queen’s Park Rangers. The Rangers wear blue and white hoops which would clash with Everton’s colours, and in three out of the four post-war season the Toffees have been defeated while wearing their changed colours. What is more the Goodison lads have been unable to deluge the blue and white clubs. In 1946-47 Everton were drawn at home to Southend United who wear blue and had to change, and in the fourth round Everton had to go to Sheffield Wednesday (also blue and white) and so had to wear white with blue facings. In 1947-48 season Everton beat Grimsby Town and the Wolves then dodging blue again they lost to Fulham in a replay. Last season Everton met Blue again in the form of Manchester City whom they defeated at Goodison Park by Higgins goal, but then had to travel to face Chelsea and wear that first change again in their losing battle 0-2. Now comes the blue and white again, although it is only since the war that Rangers changed from green and white hoops.
QUIGLEY AND EVERTON
December 14, 1949. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
It is extremely doubtful that Eddie Quigley, Sheffield Wednesday’s £25,000 forward, will be joining Everton. Manager Mr. Cliff Britton of Everton stated today, that he not had a further conversation with Quigley but that the position had not been advanced. Five clubs have been negotiating for Quigley, and the opinion is expressed in Sheffield that Quigley eventually will join Preston N.E., who yesterday signed Willie Forbes from Wolverhampton Wanderers.
It’s A Toss
Both Everton and Liverpool are anxious that in the event of them forcing draws in the F.A. Cup third round ties to replay here on the following Wednesday. The clubs want to settle the matter amicably, and Everton waited for Liverpool’s view as emanating from last evening meeting.
QUIGLEY NOW UNLIKELY TO JOIN UP
December 14, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Mr. Cliff Britton, Everton’s manager has had further talks with Eddie Quigley, but the possibility of his joining the Goodison club has not been brought any nearer. It is now extremely unlikely that he will be throwing in his lot with Everton. Wolves also are no longer interested, and at the moment Preston appear to be favourites.
EVERTON’S MANY CHANGES FOR TOMORROW
December 16, 1949. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton for their match at Goodison Park tomorrow with Middlesbrough, one of the most-improved teams in the First Division, will have a Football League debutant in Eric Moore of Haydock. Dugdale will be absent owing to indisposition; McIntosh has not recovered from injury, and Ted Sagar who last week celebrated his 429th League match is omitted. Everton cannot yet name the exact formation of the attack, but Cyril Lello, who has proved such a success at half-back, included among the forwards (he played they for Shrewsbury as a forward). George Burnett the local lad gets reward for excellent goalkeeping with the Reserves and returns for the first time since playing at Newcastle in the early weeks of the season while Saunders crosses to left back and Moore a 22-year-old ex-Navy lad, at right back. Moore was with Haydock C and B and first played for Everton as a junior in 1943-44 season. He returned to Haydock and jointed the Royal Navy. On demobilization Moore went back to complete his time at his Haydock job and played for C and B. Last March he returned to Everton as a part-time professional, but became a full time professional in June and has been a regular member of the Central League side. Final decision will be made regarding the attack just before the 2.15 kick-off against a Middlesbrough who will be seeking only their third Goodison win in history. The Borough last week defeated Burnley 4-0 immediately following Burnley’s 5-1 win over Everton, so obviously the Blues have a tough task at hand. Both teams are slaves to the constructive side of football’s arts and so this should be a splendid game of football and if Everton can produce the punch they should win. Everton; Burnett; Moore, Saunders; Farrell, Jones (T.G), Grant; (from); Buckle, Wainwright, Powell, Higgins, Lello, Eglington. Middlesbrough; Ugolini; Dicks, Hardwick; Bell, Whittaker, Gordon; Linacre, Mannion, McKennan, McCrae, Walker.
Everton Fans To Fly To Cup-Tie
Everton’s cuptie history will be made on January 7, when a party of enthusiastic supporters will fly to London and back for the F.A. Cup third round tie with Queen’s Park Rangers. It will not be the first time footballs fans have flown to football matches; in fact, a large party flew from Belfast’s to Manchester for the international match between England and Ireland, individuals too have flown to various important matches, but this is the first time that Merseysiders have taken the air route to support one of our premier clubs.
EVERTON FIVE CHANGES
December 16, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Burnett and Grant Recalled, Moore at Full Back, And Lello in Attack
Everton will make five changes in their side for tomorrow’s home game with Middlesbrough, two of them enforced by unfitness and one a positional switch. Burnett is preferred in goal to Ted Sagar, who is being given a well-earned rest. Sagar has had a tough job all season. Moore comes in for Dugdale who is indisposed with Saunders crossing over to left back. In the intermediate line, Grant is named at left back, with Lello as one of the six forwards from which final attacking choice will be made. Higgins also is included in this list. McIntosh is unfit, suffering from a pulled muscle. This will be Moore’s first appearance in the senior cup. He joined Everton as an amateur during the war from Haydock C and B, and signed “pro” last season. He has been doing well with the Central League side. Unless Everton can get both points from the Borough their outlook already pretty grim, will become even more depressing. Only once since September 3 have Everton raised a winning flag. Nearly four months of football in which they have played 15 matches, has brought them but a meagre seven points from a possible 30. On top of that, their goal average has been so badly riddled that they must now have a point more than the others immediately above them before they can overtake any rivals. The unfortunate part of the Blues decline is in the cumulative effect of their non-success. Forwards become over-eager and defenders over anxiety when things consistently go strong. A single mistake may have such disproportionate consequences when every point is of vital consequence that everybody becomes scared stiff of making an error. Middlesbrough are not a particularly strong away side, and if Everton can preserve an even keel in this game and go into it with the confidence that victory is there for the taking, and forget their parlous League position, they should get the maximum reward. It will not be easy, but with the right spirit and the backing of the crowd Everton can do it. The Huddersfield spectators had almost as big a hand in the Yorkshire club’s victory over Liverpool last week as the Town’s players. The encouragement they gave their side was an eye-opener. I hope to hear something just as good from the Goodison terraces tomorrow. Everton; Burnett; Moore, Saunders; Farrell, Jones (T.G), Grant; (from); Buckle, Wainwright, Powell, Higgins, Lello, Eglington. Middlesbrough; Ugolini; Dicks, Hardwick; Bell, Whittaker, Gordon; Linacre, Mannion, McKennan, McCrae, Walker.
Everton Reserves (v. Blackpool, away); Oakes; Greenhalgh, Hedley; Woods, Falder, Lindley; Corr, Fielding, Catterick, Hampson, Parker.
Oakes is an amateur goalkeeper from Bristol who is up at Goodison on trial.
December 17, 1949. The Evening Express
Everton Player’s Indisposition
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Gordon Dugdale, the Everton left-back and one of the most promising young defenders in football, today announced his retirement from football. Rheumatic fever which Gordon suffered while serving with the Fleet Air Arm has taken its toll, and regretfully Dugdale gives up a career which promised so well. Dugdale who is 25 years of age, is a Merseysider who has been with Everton since he was 14 years-old. He went to Linacre school and played for Liverpool schoolboys and Lancashire schoolboys. Dugdale was groomed in the Everton junior sides and when war came he joined the Fleet Air Arm, gaining commissioned rank. Gordon returned to Everton on demobilization, and quickly won his place in the Football League side when Greenhalgh was injured. Dugdale made 20 appearances in the League side in 1947-48 and last season made 19 appearances, while this season he has been an ever present. Dugdale is in partnership with his brother as estate agents, and so has an assured future, but we shall miss him in football, especially after the excellence of his play this season, and with a good exhibition against Sunderland ringing down the curtain on a career which promised so much, but which has been brought to a quick end. Dugdale leaves football in the knowledge that he has served the game and Everton magnificently. “It is a wrench having to leave football,” said Gordon to me today, “but I think it is for the best. It has been a great experience, and I have had some happy times with Everton, believe me. Manager Cliff Britton said; “The directors and myself are very sorry to lose the services of Gordon, for he always has been a 100 per cent club man and given everything to the game and the club, ever since he has been in football. Dugdale is of the type the game can ill-afford to lose, and we wish him every success in his new undertaking. “
EVERTON SHOW MORE PUNCH IN VITAL TEST AGAINST THE ‘BORO
December 17, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
One, Two, -Buckle My Shoe!
Everton 3, Middlesbrough 1
With everyone anticipating an Everton defeat, a much-changed side astonished a small Goodison attendance with a deserved 3-1 beating for Middlesbrough. Buckle’s two second-half goals were opportunely taken, and little Grant, who brought much bite into the Everton half-back line, had earlier scored with a rocket shot from 30 yards. The now boy, had a most creditable debut. And now for Anfield next Saturday! Everton; Burnett, goal; Moore and Saunders, backs; Farrell, Jones (captain), and Grant, half-backs; Powell, Higgins, Lello, and Eglington, forwards. Middlesbrough; Ugolini, goal; Dicks and Hardwick, backs; Bell, Whittaker, and Gordon, half-backs; Linacre, Mannion, McKernnan, McCrea, and Walker, forwards. Referee; Mr. J. S. Pickles (Bradford). Last minute news at Everton was that Powell and not Wainwright would play at inside right. The weather was cold and windy, and the attendance, when Everton came out was not more than 20,000, and there was scarcely a peep out of any of them. Jones had no sooner won the toss and elected to take the advantage of the wind, when the sun came out brilliantly in the eyes of Burnett and other Everton defenders. The Everton club announced that Wainwright was suffering from food poisoning. It was all McKennan and Middlesbrough for the first five minutes with no sign of Mannion, and yet Everton nearly scored off their first dangerous attack. Lello made a good header, but without pace, from a free kick given against Linacre, and the ball hung so that Ugolini was in danger of being charged as he made his catch on the goal line.
Great Chance Missed
Buckle, by coming inside and picking up a nice pass, was a “scorer” after ten minutes, but Referee Pickles had no doubt that Buckle had been offside when the ball was last played. This disallowment created discontent among spectators yearning for something to brighten their football lives. Aubrey Powell missed the chance of a lifetime from a through ball by Saunders. He used his bump of anticipation finely to get into position, seemed incapable of doing anything but put the ball in the net, and yet somehow rammed the ball against the concrete surround. It was a poor sort of start, and Everton at this stage suffered a prolong agony of suspence with the ball bobbing about in front of Burnett, and three of four Middlesbrough forwards all trying to find an opening for a shot. The goal by which Middlesbrough brought took the lead was a most unusual and brilliant one, Walker’s angled shot was an awkward one to deal with, Burnett just managed to bring it down from the near angle, but before he could do anything about it Mannion standing with his back to the goal, hooked it over his head at speed, in the manner of a Stubbins. This was certainly an astonishingly well taken goal. Lello, again with a header, was near to scoring, this time from a Powell corner kick, getting his chance when Buckle and Jones both went up, and the wingman connected first. Italian goalkeeper Ugolini had almost gone out as far as Lello when the header was made, so if it had been on the mark he must have conceded a goal. As it was the ball was high over the bar.
Grant and Saunders were both beaten by the surging speed of Linacre who seemed almost surprised to find himself still with the ball at Burnett’s feet. The goalkeeper did well to block the ball away. The Middlesbrough defence with Whittaker playing well, closed its ranks successfully against some Everton moves of promise, and at this point Everton were enjoying their best spell. The corner Everton won on the left at 29 minutes had a successful sequel. Jones and Buckle spoke to one another as though to prearrange which was to head a goal, but the corner, when it arrived, was easily headed away, and yet out of the Blue, standing way back in the “long grass” little Grant hit a tremendous right foot shot which sped on the wind straight to the upper works of the back of the net. I should say the distance was every inch of 38 yards. Linacre was spoken to for a mysterious sort of foul against Grant, and Everton. With a heartening goal behind them, really began to look as though they might begin to believe in themselves and their ability to win a match.
Higgins was Unlucky
Buckle was damaged when coming to earth heavily and trying to make a header, and Higgins, by grazing the ball off the top of his head, was desperately unlucky not to head a leading goal. Middlesbrough were luckless, too, as after Mannion had weaved through, McKennan came in at the vital juncture and hit a shot against the foot of the post. Buckle did some delightful things, and so at times did Higgins, especially when he back-heeled a ball through for the in-running Buckle, who weaved on-and then lost control of the ball at the last moment. As a result of this incident an indirect free kick was awarded to Everton almost on the goal line, only two or three yards out. Eglington took this in a brainy sort of way, and tried to score via the legs of the lined-up Middlesbrough defenders, who were on the goal-line. The ruse nearly succeeded. Next Burnett expecting McKennan to centre, found a shot travelling quickly towards goal and saved only at the second attempt. Whittaker was spoken to for a foul on Eglington.
Half-time; Everton 1, Middlesbrough 1.
Grant infused a lot of life into his play, was good in the tackle, and early in the second half there was no hint that Middlesbrough would revert to the form of the first quarter of an hour. Buckle with his eye on the sharp chance, drove in a shot on the mark from a fine angle, and Ugolini made the catch, and so cleverly eluded the sporting Higgins that the Everton centre forward was in grave danger of charging the upright.
Tom Jones had everyone’s hearts in their mouths when passing back and not realizing McCrae was very much on the premises. So far Moore had not been particularly tested, but he had done well enough in a safety first sort of way. The Middlesbrough wing half backs were very good, but nothing could have stopped Eglington scoring if he had kept his head and kept the ball down when he had only Ugolini to dispose of. Instead he tapped the ball over the bar.
Everton on Top
Everton had gradually got the top, and for the first time in the game the Everton defence began to have it easy. Moore was now doing his best work. Yet, if Middlesbrough had struck with more conviction in some of their attacks they would assuredly have taken the lead. Buckle headed a goal from a fast Eglington centre, but the whistle had gone for a free kick in Everton’s favour, it so happened that there was rough justice, as Everton scored from the free kick. The ball was shot in, and was kicked away from the goal-line by a Middlesbrough defender before Buckle seized on it and rammed it through a forest of legs to get the second goal.
Wherever the fight was thickest there was the non-stop Grant and Middlesbrough, smarting under this goal, made the fight pretty thick. Burnett missed his punch but was involved in nothing more serious than a corner, obligingly pulled yards beyond the goal. Burnett was bumped as he made a catch from a high ball and there was a danger that ball and goalkeeper would both be “netted,” but Burnett, although slipping, kept his grip and was two feet away from the line. Much more venom was in the game now, and it was almost continually Middlesbrough with Everton needing to fight very hard to maintain their position.
Higgins certainty, did right thing when a long clearance put him clean through, and he turned the ball in for Lello, coming in at speed, but Lello was challenged as he shot, and Everton only got a corner. Ugolini shortly after this, once again made a beautiful clean and polished catch of a Powell centre. Higgins got a full clearance to the body and not unexpectedly, needed attention, what time Eglington went almost to outside right and almost completely missed the shot. When Ugolini was involved in a corner, both half-back Gordon and the goalkeeper thought it should have been a goalkick, and said so. The referee spoke to Gordon. After delay the corner kick was taken by Powell and Buckle headed a joyous third goal. So in the second half, at least, it was a case of one, two, Buckle my shoot! Final; Everton 3, Middlesbrough 1
BLACKPOOL RES V EVERTON RES
December 17, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Blackpool Res; Hall, goal; Kennedy and Wright, backs; McKnight, Crosland, and Fenton, half-backs; Hobson, Falconer, Mudie, Davidson, and Adams, forwards. Everton Res; Oakes, goal; Greenhalgh, and Hedley, backs; Woods, Falder, and Lindley, half-backs; Corr, Fielding, Catterick, Donovan, and Parker, forwards. Referee; Mr. G. Ollerton (Preston). Blackpool attacked from the kick-off. Mudie just failed to get his head to an Adams’ centre when well placed, in front of the Everton goal. Everton’s first attack ended with a Fielding shot from 30 yards which the wind caught and diverted round the post. After 21 minutes Everton scored through Parker. A centre from Corr dropped on to the outside left’s head. He had no difficulty in heading past Hall. Blackpool equalized a minute later through Mudie. Blackpool on the restart spread-eagled the Everton defence with a series of determined raids. Adams provided a high-light with a brilliant 75 yard dash which took him through the Everton defence. Five yards from the goal line he squared a pass to Mudie but the centre forward shot wide. For Everton, Fielding broke away slipped the ball to Donovan, and just failed to connect with the inside left’s return when he had only Hall to beat. Final; Blackpool Res 1, Everton Res 1
December 17, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Alex Massie Pin-Points Everton’s Forwards Faults
Many glowing references have been made to Everton’s performance at West Bromwich. I hate to strike a sour note, but I thought their display was more footing than football, and I am astounded that Everton supporters are so lacking in discernment that they have written you as they have. Never have I seen such an inept tip-tapping display from an Everton forward line. If this is their usual method it is small wonder that they hardly ever score a goal. Instead of making ground the wingers almost invariably passed back and then ran into an offside position! I very much doubt whether the Albion defenders will have an easier game this season. Alex Massie’s summary in the following Saturday’s paper was just “pretty-pretty” stuff which got them nowhere because it was mostly across the field and not up and down it. That was a very fair description. He also said that if they did not change their methods they would be in trouble at the end of the season, and said that Mr. Cliff Britton must be a very worried man. As I saw it at The Hawthorns, although my eyes may have been tear-dimmed, Everton then needed two wingers (I have not seen Buckle) and a two-footed centre forward, and if the inside forwards are to be retained hey must learn to make a good sharp pass occasionally, instead of running half the length of the field whilst the opposing defence masses and waits for the pass which must come. I shall be at Stoke, Derby, and Wolverhampton, and hope to see a decided improvement in the team, I have supported since 1917 –B.H. Burrow, 98 Glen Park Road, Birmingham 6.
“Seem to be a lot of Evertonians living in Birmingham! Always glad to hear from them. Mr. Burrows hits the nail on the head. Forward progression, not lateral movement, is what the front line needs, plus punch in the penalty area.
• Gordon Dugdale , Everton F.C, Gordon runs a judo school
EVERTON 3 MIDDLESBROUGH 1
December 19, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
By Leslie Edwards
Manager Matt Busby, looking at the Ted Buckle record, since he took off Manchester United colours for those of Everton, must be beginning to wonder. Not that Matt is likely to have had any wrong illusions about what he was doing when obliging an old friend, but because the Buckle name has been so much among the goals at a time that United have had their share if ciphers. I have seen much of Buckle since he joined Everton, and only the last 70 minutes of the first match was he not impressive. For the rest he had done magnificently, culminating in a triumph against Middlesbrough. Where, tell me, is the winger who can score twice, have two goals disallowed and hit the post all in 90 minutes. Liddell, I should say is the only man of comparable striking power.
Was It Offside
Everton, though winning by three goals to one, may be more than a trifle sore that two well-worked Buckle goals should be thrown to the discard. In the first case the offside decision, in my view, (and in the linesman’s) was correct; in the second when Eglington hit a fierce centre for Buckle to head the ball, beyond Ugolini, there is no doubt that the whistle had gone for a free-kick in Everton’s favour. And the referee was not to sense that he would penalize the innocent because a lot happened after he had blown. It was rough justice that Buckle should score when the delayed free kick was taken. Everton deserved to win and because we imagined that such a changed and “burly” side could not win we must give them top marks for a bright and encouraging victory. What we should say to Peter McKennan, if he held and continued to hold the ball as though he were one man forward line. I hesitate to think. The number of passes he made to other Middlesbrough forwards could be numbered on the thumb of one hand! Middlesbrough, who looked the better side, and who had so many good chances to win, contributed much to the position they found themselves in, when they stood 2-1 down and then began to fight back earnestly.
Bundle of Courage
I liked, besides Buckle’s genius for being in the right place at the right time, and doing the right thing, the infectious and zippy “half-back” play of that bundle of courage and enterprise, Grant, who set the seal on his return by a magnificent goal. He was a long, long way from Ugolini; when he hit a corking shot, which lost none of its speed through being borne on the half-gale. Lello fitted in effectively in the forward line and Higgins, who gets the crowd so angry, was frequently making brilliant touches off which goals were always likely. The Everton improvement coming at the time when Liverpool lost again, and with the Liverpool-Everton match next for decision makes Saturday’s Anfield meeting one full of possibilities which could never have been imagined this time three weeks ago.
Hedley, whose mended broken leg is in the nature of a miracle of bone-setting continues to get good reports as from the Reserves team play and, according to Cliff Britton, will be ready for first team duty in the near future. As to generalities there are two strange things worth putting on record. The doctors only learned of Gordon Dugdale’s heart weakness, which ends his career, because the player went to them first with eye trouble.
• Liverpool “A” 3, Everton “A” 1
• Everton “B” 3, South Liverpool “A” 1
BLUES SHAPE BETTER
December 19, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Two points to Everton come so rarely that it savours too much of looking a “gift horse” in the mouth to unduly stress the obvious weaknesses still in the side. Suffice it to say that had the Blues had the same punch and finishing power in the middle and on the left that they had on the right, they might have annihilated Middleborough. Considering the enforced changes in the side, however, it was a good victory. It showed little Grant in his best form, scoring a great goal with a terrific 30-yard drive, which even Lawton or Liddell could not have bettered. This goal was particularly useful in that it came when Everton might have been inclined to get a little discouraged, and was almost as valuable as the one Grant got in the 89th minute of the Cup-tie against Wolves two years ago. Eric Moore could be well satisfied with his debut. He took a little while to settle down, quite naturally, but once he had done so this former Haydock 22-year-old showed that he was the making of a good defender when he has acquired more experience. Burnett was sound in goal, and again it was in attack that the team’s main shortcoming were found. Yet, with a little luck the Blues might have had half a dozen goals. Buckle’s “goal” disallowed for offside, seemed perfectly legitimate to me, while his shot which hit the upright, had Ugolini whacked to the wide. Powell missed a couple of fairly easy chances, yet deserved credit in each case for the quickness of thought which enabled him to be on the spot at the right moment. Lello how was not so successful as an inside forward as at half-back, also missed a reasonable chance. But why worry about these? This game showed up the Everton attack as more forceful and ready to shoot, which is something. And what an acquisition Buckley has been. Four goals in six games is a good start. Let’s hope he can keep it up. He can shoot strongly; use his head well, and know’s where the goals lies, which is quite a change. Mannion’s goal for the Borough reminded me of the one Tommy Lawton once scored against Scotland at Maine Road when lying on his back. Mannion’s was almost as good an effort. Borough need to distribute the ball more in attack to get the best out of their line. Their defence was none too happy under pressure, with Ugolini agile and acrobatic but not sure, and the backs inclined to nerviness. Their all-round tackling was dour and sometimes unceremonious, but on this showing they are certainly not in a false position in the table.
Everton’s Injured Players All Making Good Progress
Fielding came satisfactorily through his run-out with Everton Reserves on Saturday, and Hedley is now ready for consideration after a month with the second string. Humphreys has shed the plaster on the injured knee, Wainwright is recovering from a slight attack of food poisoning, and McIntosh is also making progress.
BOARD TO EXPLAIN POSITION
December 20, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
And Shareholders To Give Their Views To The Directorate
Everton shareholders who are perturbed about the parlous position of the Goodison Club, will be able to let off steam tomorrow evening, when an extraordinary general meeting is being held at the Law Association rooms, starting at 7.30. Whether there will be fireworks or whether everything will pass off in the harmony usually associated with this time of the year, remains to be seen. The meeting has been requisitioned by 87 shareholders, who between them hold not less than one-tenth of the capital of the company, and is the outcome of a resolution tabled at the recent annual meeting of the Shareholders Association. There is only one item on the agenda, but it can embrace quite a lot. It explains that the meeting has been called for the purpose of “affording the directors an opportunity of explaining to the shareholders the reasons for the present position of the club, which the requisitioners regard as unsatisfactory, and for the directors to receive the views of the shareholders thereon.” The sting of this item, like that of the wasp, appears to be in the tall. Opinions vary as to whether any useful purpose will be served by this meeting. So long as both sides approach the problem in the right spirit –namely that of the ultimate good of the Everton club, it cannot do any harm and will undoubtedly help to clear the air. If it also disposes of some of the unfounded rumors which have been flying about this season it will not have been fruitless.
EVERTON MEETING MAY BE LIVELY
December 21, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
By Leslie Edwards
Tonight’s extraordinary general meeting of Everton F.C. shareholders at the Law Association rooms, Cook Street, may be lively and might be sensational. It was called on the requisition of eight-seven shareholders, and in official terms, is to “afford the directors an opportunity of explaining to shareholders the reasons for the present position of the club, which the requisitioners regard as unsatisfactory, and for the directors to receive the views of the shareholders thereon.” The position is therefore that the Everton board will attend armed with the relevant information, but not knowing in what form questions will be put. In this they are at a disadvantage, but they hold all the trump cards in other respects because beyond giving questions an airing the requisitioning shareholders can do little tangible. It is clear that all who attend have the interest of the club at heart, and it is to be hoped that what is said will be given the wide publicity it deserves, both in the club’s interests and in the interests of questioners. The Everton position, this season is not entirely responsibility gather for the holding of the meeting. Rather is it due to the cumulative effect of Everton’s record over the past few seasons. Taking the long view, only good can come of an occasion of his kind, and if as is likely their seems antagonism on the surface it will merely be because both critical shareholders and board are seemly anxious to see the situation improved.
I see someone with an inquiring mind has been going into the strictly monetary side of the Quigley transfer. He arrives at the conclusion that £26,000 is a fair price to pay for a footballer who can help to provide rich dividends, because £26,000 invested, after deducting income tax would amount to only a few hundred pounds per year. The comparison is a false one, I think, because at any moment of any of the ninety minutes he plays, Quigley is liable to injury which would preclude his ever playing again. And where are the dividends then on a £26,000 outlay. Many disagree that any player is worth £26,000, but surely the law of supply and demand operates in football as it does in business. When Stubbins was signed by Liverpool for £12,500 the prospect of their getting their money back in a few seasons seemed remote, I do not doubt that Liverpool’s championship year and their run to the semi-final stage of the F.A. Cup more than repaid for the player and he is still, happily a live Anfield asset. No Football league club has indulged itself in more frequent transfer in and out, than Newcastle United, but they seem to sell well, having had part of the player’s value and the publicity of their many big buys cannot be overlooked. Big fees, I think will remain and the players will always be worth what he fetches. Restriction of the size of fees is a pleasant thought, but it can never be more.
I heard it argued yesterday, that good and bad luck does not even itself out in sport over a long period. My contention has always been that generally the player gets the luck he deserves, and that if he thinks back, honestly, he will recall as many lucky as luckless moments. Monumental triumphs can be achieved in football, in golf, in tennis or in boxing, by the generous use of the word “if” and in football, in particular, this is a commonplace. Thus having been beaten 0-3 it is frequently possible for fanatics to convince themselves that the match should have gone 3-2 in their favour. But next day there is the result 0-3, just as the referee said it should be. In golf your luck I gather, is invariably in whether your ball hops over or round the bunkers instead of going into them. Obviously rounds are played in which the breaks, as they say go one way. But taking stock of good fortune and bad over the years few would be bold enough to say that luck has continually gone against them.
There are such people. And they claim, further, that while they have always been unfortunate, the people they have played have always enjoyed riotous good fortune. Those in this category I rate as past redemption. The greatest believer in being bold and leaving luck to take care of everything was a friend who played snooker on precisely those terms. Where a pot was on he attempted it; when the lie of the balls was forbidding he merely chose his target and played on to it with all the force his cue could command. It was surprising how often the ball zoomed over the baize at a dozen angles before finally coming to rest in one or other of the pockets. And his smile of satisfaction was so beatific and said so plainly. “There what did I tell you” you could not be annoyed. I should explain that as the ball sped about, the striker, by nipping smartly about the table like a gazelle was always on hand at a pocket to see from a good point of vantage, how his luck was faring.
You cannot dull the wit of the follower of football. Thus, the Evertonian; “The Football League would arrange a fixture at Anfield on Christmas eve just to spoil out holiday. And the Liverpoolian; “I know what is wrong with our side – they are only an 89 minutes team.”
December 21, 1949. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Everton’s position was complicated today, for Ted Sagar is indisposed, while Maurice Lindley is confined to bed with influenza. Jack Humphreys is progressing from injury, but Manager Mr. Cliff Britton said that he must be regarded as doubtful. Aubrey Powell is getting over the leg knock he received in the match against Middleborough, while Eddie Wainwright is all right again following his touch of foot poisoning, and Jimmy McIntosh resumed training today following a pulled muscle.
BARNSLEY JUNIORS TO MEET EVERTON “D” AT GOODISON
December 21, 1949. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Football stars of the future will be on parade at Goodison Park on Saturday, January 7, when the Blues will be playing a cup-tie at Queen’s Park Rangers. Everton have arranged for “D” eleven –their sixth team to face Barnsley juniors in a friendly game, and if one takes a line through the many successful youths’ games we have had at the Park this should be immensely entertaining. The “D” team is composed of lads who have only recently left school, while the Barnsley side is actually the Barnsley schoolboys eleven, which last season won the English Schools’ Shield. The Barnsley manager, Mr. Angus Seed, early on was captivated with the play of his town boys, and signed up the whole eleven –en-block. It is that same eleven which will face the Everton lads. You can rest assured that out of these juniors teams the clubs will get a few who eventually will make top grade, even if some as is usually the case, do fade out. The future of football is linked with these juniors who can, and will, I think one day provide the solution to all these inflated transfers.
December 22, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Manager Clears The Air
Mr. Cliff Britton’s Explanation Satisfies the Shareholders
If Mr. Cliff Britton had any lingering doubts as to how he stood in the regard of Everton shareholders =, they were quickly set at rest at last night’s extraordinary general meeting. A vote of confidence in him was passed with acclamation, and a forest of hands went up for the honour of seconding the motion. A suggestion that the board of directors should also be associated with this brought a rather half-hearted negative from one or two odd corners, but when it was put to the vote here were no dissentients. Those in favour were so obviously overwhelming that the chairman did not attempt a count. The meeting passed off without any real fireworks, mainly because of manager Britton’s able speech at the commencement. It was a masterly effort; brief but comprehensive, straight to the point, and embracing all that mattered. He knew what he wanted to say and said it clearly and concisely. Mr. Britton explained that as the only conditions on which he came to Everton was that he had absolutely sole control of the team, he had asked to be allowed to answer the requisitioners’ request for “an explanation of the present position of the club, which in their view was unsatisfactory. First, he dispelled rumours that there had been trouble between himself and the board. “This is utterly unfounded” he said “and I cannot speak too highly of all the board has done to assist me.” “We are just as perturbed as the shareholders at our position, and are doing all that I possible to put the matter right. But the lack of talent to-day is reflected in the absurd transfer fees being paid. Panic buying will not solve our immediate problems. Even if you are prepared to pay these fees you have to stand in the queue and wait to hear whether you are the club chosen by the player concerned.”
“The fact that a club was ready to pay top wages, full benefits, and provide a house were comparatively minor details’ when negotiating for a star today. They had all those things already. If that was all that was offered, the players was not interested.” Mr. Britton read the statement by Mr. R. Smith, chairman of Manchester City, relating to the demands of players, whom Manchester had sought, and added; “That is the position we are in. If we are to resort to these methods of obtaining players, the Everton club will not have anything to do with it.” (hear, hear). Although the club might pick up an odd player or two, the best proposition for the future was to concentrate on their own talent. The club was making progress with its younger players. It was running several junior sides, and had in the last twelve months given trails to no fewer than 387 young players. Mr. Britton paid a tribute to the co-operation he had from all the Everton staff, and pleaded for patience. He hoped the spectators would encourage the players. It meant a lot. Criticism after the match was the spectators’ prerogative, but during the match it was harmful.
Denial of Discontent
He strenuously denied rumours of discontent between himself and the players. Any shareholder was at liberty to go to the club and interview the players. Obviously everyone could not always be satisfied. There were bound to be occasions when a man who was dropped felt aggrieved. Any who considered he had a grievance could go to the manager’s office to air it. “If he has something on his mind,” said Mr. Britton, “the quicker I can get it off the more service he is going to be to the club and to me.” Allegations of alleged “commando” training at Goodison were similarly demolished. Training was limited to three mornings, and one afternoon, about an hour and quarter’s actual work each time, though occasionally a player might have extra training in the afternoon if necessary. “Football has stopped being just a game. We have to work at it. Players must be prepared for this if they are to get to the top. They won’t improve their game by playing billiards or going to matinees. They must concentrate on the job. “That is my sole attitude so the playing staff, I train with them, and do all I can do to help them” (applause). As illustrating the spirit in the dressing room, Mr. Britton read a letter from Gordon Dugdale saying how harmonious and happy his relations with the club had always been.
A Useful Purpose
Dr. C. Baxter (Chairman) answered a number of questions from the body of the hall at the conclusion of Mr. Britton’s address. These referred to the departure of Lawton, which was agreed to because of his wife’s health, that of Joe Mercer, -“whom we did not wish to lose” –and other points dealing with affairs of past seasons. One shareholder asked the chairman whether he was a true that a member of the board had recently transferred shares to individuals who are alleged to be present of football pools.
2. Did the directors think that was in the best interest of the Everton club, and did any member of the board contest to such transfer? Dr. Baxter replied that any transactions of shares was a private venture. “No one has any right to say who is going to but those shares” he added. “There is nothing against a member of the football pools buying the shares, and there is nothing that can be done about it.” Another speaker pointed out that it was within the power of the board and shareholders to amend the Articles of Association to prevent shares being transferred to anybody with pools interests. The meeting served a useful purpose in dispelling the many harmful and unfounded rumours which have been going the rounds this season. If it increases future harmony between the board and shareholders than its value will have been greater still. At the conclusion Mr. Britton was congratulated by many shareholders on the speech, and wished the best of luck for the future. He must have gone to bed last night a happy and contented man. All that is needed now to complete his satisfaction is a few more Everton victories in the near future.
EVERTON SHAREHOLDERS MEET THE BOARD
December 22, 1949. The Evening Express
Unanimous Vote of Confidence in Direction and Manager
Mr. Britton’s Defence of His Players
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Manager Mr. Cliff Britton played one of the finest ever games for Everton when he faced 170 shareholders at the shareholders at the specially requisitioned meetings last night, and so won their admiration that the meeting ended with a unanimous vote of confidence in the directorate and himself. The meeting was convened to give the directors the change of giving the club I willing to give a player to reasons for the lowly position of the club and Mr. Britton who has full charge in the club and players, was at his own request to the chairman Dr. Cecil S. Baxter, allowed to give an explanation. This was done in such masterly manner that at the conclusion of a 40 minute speech there was no criticism of the club and officers at all, and, in fact, good wishes all round. Dr. Baxter handed a meeting which had many interruptions and which might have got out of hand, quietly and well. Questions were raised on many subjects to which it was impossible and impolitic to give answers, but Mr. Britton touched on practically every point of the club and football and gave a brilliant defence of his players.
Lot Of Good
There is no doubt that the meeting did a lot of good, and made for smoother working in the future between directors, officials, shareholders and supporters and the shareholders and now in a position to appreciate the thousands and one difficulties which have to be faced in running a vast football club. Mr. Britton paid high tribute to the hard work put in by his directors, who willingly undertook long journeys when sometimes too three or four days to do jobs for the club. “There have been rumours,” said Mr. Britton, “that there has been trouble between my directors and myself, but those rumours are entirely unfounded I think them for their support during this worrying time. No doubt you are perturbed about the position, but we cannot understand that people do not realize that we are perturbed or that we are doing anything about it. We are fully aware of our position and no one wants to be told of that position. The lack of talent in the game is reflected by the absurd transfer fees asked and being paid, I do not think panic buying will solve our problems, for some clubs have spent as much as £80,000 and not solved theirs. The fact that any club is willing to give a player top wages, full benefits and everything he is due and provide a house, is only a minor detail, when you are negotiating for a “star.” They have all these things at the club for which they are playing so well, there to offer a player –I welcome the statement of Manchester City’s chairman Mr. Bob Smith, on matters which cannot always be discussed in public. It takes a brave man to come out and discuss them, but Mr. Smith has done so and I think he has the admiration of everyone. “With regard to new players. I cannot promise anything at all, and until there is a surplus of players in the game we can only rely on our own resources and bring along our own players. Price does not make a player and no one can say that one player can make a team. We are making progress with youngsters, and this season have given trials to 381` players I want to pay tribute to our staff, and whatever suggestions I have made to them they have given me every co-operation.” Mr. Britton asked shareholders not to criticize during a match but to give the players every encouragement they could.
“With regard to rumours about discontent between the players and myself that is all news to me,” said Mr. Britton “and I should welcome any shareholder to come along and ask the players himself. In any club you have to have players who are not satisfied, but there has been no occasion when there has been trouble between a player and myself. Regarding the rumour that I subject the players to Commando training, my attitude is that the game is a livelihood for the players and myself, and so we have to work hard at the game and not play as it. We do treat the game as a game instead of a business. Foreign countries are working harder at the game than we are, and my attitude to the players is that we must work at the game for the same of the club and ourselves. You do not improve by playing billiards, or going to matinees. The players train from 10.15 a.m. to about 12.15 p.m. on four mornings a week and on one afternoon’s a week. That is not Commando training but an insult to t. And whenever I have asked any players if he would like to come back and train in an afternoon there never has been objection. Mr. Britton dispelled the rumours that there was discontent in the dressing-room, and said he welcomed the opportunity of expressing his views to the shareholders. “My connections with Everton are deeper than just being manager,” he said. Being manager is my livelihood, and I am doing everything in my power to see that the club is brought back to the standard of the happy days of the past. It was Mr. J. Owen who moved the vote of thanks to the directors and Mr. Britton and more than a dozen jumped up to second before Mr. Owen put the resolution to the meeting and there was not one vote against. Complete support for the directors in not playing fantastic transfer fees was given; in fact one shareholders said; “If it means relegation instead of going into the slave-market of transfer then let us have relegation. The Everton club has a magnificent future. And with the sentiment I think everyone was agreed.
December 23, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Anfield Match of the Year
Apart from cup-ties, there is nothing in the Soccer programme which thrills Merseyside sports folk so much as a Liverpool-Everton “derby” game. Tomorrow’s match at Anfield promises to provide a memorable encounter. While on the respective records of the side this season a victory for Liverpool looks the most likely outcome; this is by no means a foregone conclusion. Against Middlesbrough Everton showed signs of a better fighting spirit with much more punch in attack. They have scored eight goals in their last five games, compared with only six in the previous eleven matches. Changes in defence may also stop the gaps which earlier had been rather alarming, and through Everton have a long way to go and a stern task before hem there is still hope. Liverpool supporters are not likely to be discouraged by the fact that the Reds lost their last two games. In each case a very late goal robbed the Anfielders of a point, and at Sunderland last week they had Brierley a virtual passenger for a long spell. Liverpool’s unbeaten run was bound to end sooner or later. Now that the hope of further records have been squashed, the side can take each match on its merits without strain attached to preserving an unbeaten certificate. Happily, the old bitter antagonism which used to characterize “derby” games a generation or more ago is now no more. For many seasons these matches have been a model of clean sportsmanlike, scrupulous behavior, and none more so than the one at Goodison Park last August. That game might well have been played without a referee. Here’s hoping that the better side wins. If it is a draw honour all round will be satisfied. If you want to know what I fancy will be the result, it is a victory for Liverpool, but I would hate to be too certain about that. Liverpool have made four changes, two, of them positional. Spicer returns to the defence in place of Shepherd, Lambert reverting to right back. Brierley is unfit, and Jimmy Payne returns to the senior side for the first time since his injury at Fulham on October 29. Liddell crosses over to the left wing. Everon have selected a dozen players from which the final choice will be made just before the kick-off. Mr. Britton has selected six forwards among them being Peter Farrell, who assisted his country as a forward. To accommodate Farrell, Jackie Grant will cross over to right half back and Lello drop back to his usual position at left half. Sagar, Humphreys, and Lindley are still unfit. Liverpool; Sidlow; Lambert, Spicer; Taylor, Hughes, Jones; Payne, Baron, Done, Fagan, Liddell. Everton; Burnett; Moore, Saunders; Grant, Jones, Lello; forwards from Buckle, Farrell, Powell, Higgins, Wainwright, Eglington.
The Reserves side for the “junior” derby at Goodison Park kick-off 11 a.m)-Oakes; Clinton, Hedley; Woods, Falder, Bentham; Corr, Fielding, Catterick, McIntosh, Parker. Liverpool Reserves; Crossley; Cadden, Parr; Williams (B.), Heydon, Christie, Swift, Shields, Williams (R.), McLeod, Watkinson.
ANFIELD BATTLE OF THE REDS AND BLUES
December 23, 1949. The Evening Express
First-Ever Christmas Eve Clash
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
The great Christmas football pageant, which brings to all Football League clubs a three match-in-four-days programme, opens tomorrow, and on Merseyside, the enthusiasts are particularly fortunate, for there are two “Derbies” to whet the appetites –at Anfield and Prenton Park. At Anfield Liverpool and Everton clash for the 84th time under the auspices of the League. The Anfield re-union, the first in history on a Christmas Eve, comes at an important point for both clubs for whereas Liverpool stand as two points leaders of the First Division, Everton are 20th, exactly 13 points behind the Reds’ total of 29 points. Liverpool have a record at stake, for they are one of the only three clubs in the First Division not to have been beaten at home. The Wolves and Sunderland are the others. Everton have not won an away game since the opening day of the season, when they won 1-0 at Middlesbrough, but they have picked up single points at Aston Villa, Manchester City and Birmingham City –an unimpressive away record. Tradition proves that no matter where these age-old rivals are positioned in the table, or what their current form, these “Derbies” are the greatest of all levelers. It was demonstrated at Anfield in August, when Liverpool were held to a goal-less draw at Goodison –the same Liverpool which went on to remain unbeaten for 19 matches. On form and actual accomplishment, Liverpool should go through to a good win, for they have dropped only five out of 20 points played for at home and they have been playing with a confidence which almost has “demanded” points. There is just a possibility that Liverpool will be a little over-anxious to avert the disaster of three successive defeats, bit if I know Liverpool aright they will banish from their minds the narrow defeats at Huddersfield and Sunderland and live for the day. In similar ways Everton will be fighting not so much to lower the colours of their rivals as to prove that the grand win over Middlesbrough last week was the real and genuine turning of the tide, and that from now on they will wipe out the memories of the proceeding months and give the Evertonians something over which to enthuse. The spirit and the willingness are there, you know. Liverpool should win but if Everton reproduce that fighting strain we saw last week, the Reds will have all their work cut out to keep this keen Blues at bay. The day itself may keep some fans away (there is that Christmas shopping to be completed), but with every stand seat sold already, and room for 50,000 odd standing, there will be a gathering in keeping with the great occasion, in which we hope the “breaks” are evenly divided, and that whatever the result we shall see a game to treasure and one that will give us hope that on Monday and Tuesday Liverpool and Everton can complete the “double” over Chelsea and Fulham respectively. Gates at Anfield will be opened at 12.30 p.m. Everton’s only doubts affects the attack, where six players are named, and six provide for what may be an interesting experiment –the inclusion of Farrell, as an inside forward, the position he occupied for Eire in internationals and for Everton against Southport in the Lancashire Cup, Grant who did so well at left half last week goes to right half, and Lello drops back to his usual position of left half. The defence is unchanged, so there will be three newcomers to “Derby” games in the Everton side –Eric Moore, Buckle and Jackie Grant. Liverpool have Ken Brierley unfit, so Jimmy Payne who had a successful run with the Reserves last week, comes in at outside-right and Billy Liddell crosses to the left to partner Fagan, Ted Spicer is fit again and returns to left back, Lambert moving to right back, Spicer is the player in the side new to “Derbies.” Liverpool; Sidlow; Lambert, Spicer; Taylor, Hughes, Jones; Payne, Baron, Done, Fagan, Liddell. Everton; Burnett; Moore, Saunders; Grant, Jones, Lello; forwards from Buckle, Farrell, Powell, Higgins, Wainwright, Eglington.
Reds Have Chance of Central League Double
The Goodison Park Christmas football parade opens tomorrow morning with the junior “Derby” between Everton and Liverpool, when the Reds have the chance to complete a Central League “double.” This is the first of the morning holiday matches, and by a coincidence Goodison also will ring down the curtain on the pre-noon games, for in Tuesday Liverpool school-boys and Ashton Schoolboys contest an English Shield match there. Form in the Derby suggests an Everton victory for they have a much superior record and have picked up 24 points in 20 matches, the latest being brought back from Blackpool and Leeds. The blend of youngsters and men who have vast League experience is bringing good results and Everton are among the leading clubs. Still, the Reds in traditional “Derby” style, are never more dangerous than when they appear to be on the “wrong end.” In the Anfield game Everton were the first to score, but Liverpool fought back in characteristic style to win eventually 3-2. This game one which avoids the clash with the senior “Derby” will provide the fans with a grand opportunity of seeing the clubs potential.
FARRELL, FORWARD, MAY SOLVE A PROBLEM
December 24, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
By Leslie Edwards.
Christmas Eve, soccer, as I see it, for male adults will be something of a battle of loyalities. On the one hand they have that compelling meeting of Liverpool and Everton, at Anfield (and rarely have the sides had greater incentive to win) and on the other hand the family duties father is always expected to perform by long custom at this time of the year. I am not so naïve as to think Anfield will be empty today, but it is quite possible that the gates will not be closed, as they usually are on such occasions. Liverpool have brought in Ted Spicer and Jimmy Payne and positionally side is changed in four places because Lambert reverts to right back and Liddell to outside left. Everton rely on the defence which helped to beat Middlesbro’ last week and select their attack from Buckle. Farrell, Powell, Higgins, Wainwright and Eglington. Anyone trying to foretell, with certainly, what will happen is welcome to try. Ordinarily neighborly matches are difficult; with Liverpool losing two matches in succession and Everton winning last Saturday, the match is far more open than anyone could have envisaged, say, three weeks ago.
Good and Sporting
Once upon a time Everton and Liverpool meeting were fiery, contentious battles with no small “insult” ignored. Today we are surer of seeing good and sporting football because players at last realize that this is merely another League match and that putting each other in an expensive pastime. One never knows whose turn is next. Payne’s return will be acceptable to many, who felt that he should have been back as soon as he became fit again. The possibility of Farrell slaying in an inside-forward position, is valid because he has twice appeared there for Eire, and with success. Farrell’s style suggests, he is more of a forward than a half back, and if Mr. Cliff Britton decides to use him there he may be solving the problem of what to do about Farrell if Grant plays well enough to keep the right-half position. It would be a novel and effective solution. Whatever happens, it will be an interesting aperitif to three matches in four days with Fulham at Everton on Monday ad Chelsea at Anfield on Tuesday. If there is any faltering on the part of the League leaders they could be replaced by a number of teams. Since only four points spate the first from the seventh club in the table. Liverpool; Sidlow; Lambert, Spicer; Taylor, Hughes, Jones; Payne, Baron, Done, Fagan, Liddell. Everton; Burnett; Moore, Saunders; Grant, Jones, Lello; forwards from Buckle, Farrell, Powell, Higgins, Wainwright, Eglington.
LIVERPOOL SAY “SAME TO YOU” AFTER FARRELL GOT HIS GIFT!
December 24, 1949, The Liverpool Football Echo
Liverpool 3, Everton 1
Liverpool; Sidlow, goal; Lambert and Spicer, backs; Taylor (P.P (captain), Hughes and Jones (W.H.), half-backs; Payne, Baron, Done, Fagan and Liddell, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Moore and Saunders, backs; Grant, Jones (captain), and Lello, half-backs; Buckle, Farrell, Wainwright, Powell, and Eglington, forwards. Liverpool recovered from the breathtaking body blow of a goal in the first half minute. They won comfortably in the end, thanks to goals by Fagan and Baron. If there were two heroes today they were Grant of Everton, and W.H. Jones of Liverpool. Grant was tenacity itself, and Jones, in the Taylor mould, was a wing-halfback nearing perfection. Everton decided to include Farrell at inside right, with Wainwright at centre forward, and Powell at inside left. The weather was perfect, and there must have been a good 50,000 waiting patiently for the teams to turn out. Tom Jones and Phil Taylor led out the team in file. Liverpool won the toss and elected to defend the Kop goal. The start was sensational. In the first half minute Farrell was a scorer and a god one. Everton came through down the centre, were half checked by Hughes but Powell got in a short pass to Wainwright, who turned the ball inwards to where Farrell was running clear of everyone. This half back turned forward took the ball on two strides and then hit a rangy long-distance drive right out of Sidlow’s reach. It seemed as though Farrell could scarcely believe he had scored, and certainly the Kopites were too flabbergasted to make any sound.
Liverpool were crowded out when they made two left-wing attacks, and Everton, playing confidently and well, had Sidlow worried for a moment when Lello, with a hit-or-miss lob, put the ball over the bar, while the goalkeeper tried to cover it and showed no little anxiety. Payne, with the ball tied to his foot, lost it twice and regained it, and finished up with a crossfield pass which Cyril Done claimed he had kicked against Jones for a corner. But no corner award came.
Some of Everton’s forward moves were now a bit obvious, and the Liverpool half-backs were reading them and doing much about it. Liverpool’s first real attempt at scoring was by Baron, who shook off a challenge and went on to slew the ball five yards wide with a badly pulled shot. Done elected to shoot with his left foot rather than bring Payne into the picture, but he too, got no direction or pace in his shot. Liverpool were luckiest when Payne hit a very good length centre beyond the far post and Fagan got up to head into a goal open of everyone except Saunders whose head steered the ball to safety. Burnett off a Liddell corner, temporarily lost possession after having appeared to have the ball in his grasp and there was an outside chance of Payne converting this mistake into a goal.
Payne delighted the Liverpool section of the crowd with his three-penny bit dribbling and eventually he managed to get in his centre. Bill Jones’s heading was good, and so was the tenacious tackling of little Jackie Grant and so also was that big punch-away by Burnett off Liddell’s centre, at this point. Wainwright, taking a quick throw, got the Liverpool defence on one foot, and Powell had taken up position and was only narrowly crowded out from the shooting range. Liverpool it seemed to me, had taken something of a grip on the game, without finding the inspired touch in the forward line.
Grant on Target
Everton played well as a team and fought well for the ball, Eglington chased half the length of the field to cook Payne’s goose after Hughes had found the winger with a perfect long-distance pass. The most uncommon throw-in taken for many a long day was when right-half Spicer stremously tried to find his own goalkeeper with the ball. Before Sidlow could do anything about it Spicer’s throw had won a corner for Everton. Moreover, this led to yet another fierce shot from Grant, the pace being almost as great as last week’s. Unfortunately the top and not the back of the net accepted this offering. The game was played in excellent spirit, and, if not very thrilling was always tense. Lambert’s falling tackle on Eglington won the ball, and then Payne in trying to beat both Saunders and Lello at least won a corner. Saunder’s outstretched foot held up Baron after Done and Liddell had made a sharp down-the-centre move and next Burnett was out to the feet of Fagan to make a brave and sure fielding of the ball. Liddell’s truly-hit free kick, with the Everton defenders standing back to give Burnett a clear view was a piece of cake for the goalkeeper, who saw the ball through all its flight, and accepted it almost nonchalantly. Liverpool were inclined to individualize, but the Everton defence was quite prepared to allow them to go so far, and no further. The persistent Grant was always at hand for any trouble by Liddell, and was relentless in everything he did. Done did the spadework for a Payne burst down the centre, but the winger pushed the ball just that little bit too far forward, and was beaten when trying to make the big shot. He was injured, and needed attention at the first stoppage, but was able to resume. Liverpool were slightly on top, but Burnett was still untroubled except for the occasion when Done surprisingly out headed Tom Jones and the ball came off his head with surprising speed. Done, when shaping to shoot was uprooted by Moore, who was still playing quite adequately and thus the Everton lead survived. Burnett was caught napping when Payne came in at speed and took the ball out of his hands, and Burnett must have felt none too comfortable over a sharp back-header by Jones, which the goalkeeper picked up none too confidently.
The game was developing into a ragged one, but there was a nice touch of finesse in a Liddell free kick, the taker preferring to lift the ball diagonally across the heads of the lined-up. Everton defenders, to Jones, stood by ready to make a header. He was not far off the mark with it either. Everton’s best and only attack for a considerable time began with a corkscrew header by Wainwright, went on via a Buckle inside pass and Eglington header, and a Powell return pass. At this point came the breakdown, because the winger had not anticipated this next move. Liddell limped after winning a corner, and the referee allowed him to be treated off the field before putting the ball in from the flag.
The Little Terror
Powell just could not get his instep to a sharp chance which came from a throw-in in front of the grand stand, this being one of the few occasions Everton had been down that end for some time. Grant was a terror to Liddell and followed the maestro wherever he went to come up with the surprise tackle in his characteristic cheeky way. Fagan’s glanced header from a Taylor free kick, awarded against Lello, was a creditable one. There were a lot of misdirected passes, hereabouts, and the ball simply would not behave on turf which was inclined to be greasy. Done, by the mere process of ducking his head and allowing Jones’s free-kick to sail on towards goal, created some embarrassment in the Everton defence, but all ended well after there had seemed a possibility of the ball entering the net almost direct. The equalizing might well have come from Phil Taylor. He strode up to a Payne centre right on the interval and hit a terrific shot right on the volley, narrowly wide.
Half-time Liverpool 0, Everton 1.
For the first time, when the game restarted we heard the Kop roar, both as encouragement to Liverpool and in derision of Everton defenders who were prepared to play safe and put the ball out of play rather than taken a risk. Aubrey Powell was caught out a little slow moving on a couple of occasions and fellow countryman Ray Lambert on the second occasion was able to put the ball away for a corner when the odds seemed to be in favour of Powell being able to centre.
An All-Welsh Duel
The corner led to another all-Welsh duel between Sidlow and Tom Jones, Sidlow caught Eglington’s corner kick, and then released it and had to make a late grab as Jones tried to burst through. It was still much Liverpool’s game except that they were playing hurriedly and without the calmness we have come to expect from them when in range of scoring. Jones was having a great time against Done, who was too often a solitary vainly trying to pick up long passes.
The Liverpool equalizer at 56 minutes, came about in an unusual way. Baron claimed a corner when there was a suspicion that the ball had rebounded from an Everton player on to Baron and then over the line. However, the referee was in no doubt, and Payne taking a couple of hops before delivering the ball low and quite wide of the ruck in front of goal, enabled Baron to turn it in deliciously as he sprawled full length. Burnett threw up a pair of despairing hands as the ball found the top of the net. So both goals had been highlights of a match which was hard and stern, but not over full of great football. Liverpool surged on, sensing the possibility of saving themselves, and apart from Sidlow, who picked up on the half-volley a surprise shot from Grant, it was Liverpool all the way.
Jones and Done were spoken to and then Baron and Payne both went up acrobatically with Burnett, and Fagan was within inches of collecting a loose ball and doing something about it. It was good to see Payne as he left the incident asking Burnett whether he was all right after his tumble. Jones got in the Anfield bad books –spectators recalled his foul on Done earlier in the half –and there was the quaint barracking cry, “Dirty Jones.” Liddell, tired of inaction, on the left, came across to Payne’s wing took a bump off Saunders and then got a corner against him. There was some jugglery by Tom Jones’s head, and yet another indecisive goalkeeping pick up before this phase closed. If all Liverpool had been as constructive and unhurried as Jones (W.H.) the story might have been different. In any event Farrell, with a shot from the sole of his foot, was close to giving Everton the lead again. Payne’s corner kicks were none too strong, but again there was a chance of a goal from one of them when Phil Taylor’s fierce shot was killed early in its flight by an Everton body. There was another corner on the Payne wing, and this one Done took with his left foot –an in swinger.
Grant and Moore were unyielding in defence. Yet strangely Liverpool’s leading goal at 68 minutes came after Moore had stood firm bodily when giving a corner against Liddell. Burnett lost Liddell’s corner, and the ball was shot in by Payne through the ruck, before Fagan snuffed it for himself on the goalline and tapped it over the line to make it 2-1. Even this goal did not set the game alight, but it appeared to have a marked effect on Everton, who could be seen to wilt under it. The truth was that apart from the first half minute goal, their forward line had been seen only rarely. Phil Taylor all through had been excellent, and the Liverpool half-back line was now showing up as the backbone of the side, and the team as a whole playing with far greater confidence. One of Fagan’s passes to Payne had the touch of genius about it, the pity was he could not pick up the return pass.
Lambert had everyone’s hearts in their months when turning the ball from one foot to another before lifting it none too accurately to Sidlow, when standing only a few yards out of goal. One of the few occasions anything was seen of Buckle arose now, and his centre at great endeavour, Lello fired right out of the ground. The new ball was of lighter hue, and was certainly livelier, and so was the game when once again Jones and Done got at cross purposes with the free kick this time in Tom Jones’s favour.
Liddell Made It
For sheer consistency and thoughtful play W.H. Jones was in a class of his own. With two such wing half-backs Liverpool never lacked for a good service of the ball. Liddell, refusing to be denied either the chance of a shot or a centre, now made goal number three, turning the ball back for Baron, coming in at inside-left to shoot beyond Burnett and virtually write off the match as an Everton defeat. Liverpool had now recovered their composure and their poise, and were playing better than at any other time in the game. A Buckle left foot shot which parted the gloom 0it was a really tremendous one –was the only spark of possible Everton recovery. The ranks of the 50,000 were thinning fast and time was ebbing as fast and all that remained was a referee-linesman consultation awarding a Liverpool goal kick when Everton claimed a corner. Grant was the man who came up to make a near corner a possibility. Handshakes all round, and that was that! Final; Liverpool 3, Everton 1.
• Haydock 2, Everton “A” 3
EVERTON RESERVES ‘DERBY’ VICTORY
December 24, 1949. Evening Express
Blues’ Juniors Clever
Hedley’s Fine Show
Everton Reserves; A.W. Oakes, goal; Clinton and Hedley, backs; Woods, Falder, and Bentham (captain), half-backs; Corr, Fielding, Catterick, McIntosh, and Parker, forwards. Liverpool Reserves; Crossley, goal; Cadden, and Parr, backs; Williams (B.), Heydon and Christie, half-backs; Swift, Shields, Williams (R.), McLead and Watkinson, forwards. Referee; Mr. H. Dykes (Manchester). Everton full back Jack Hedley, proved that he has completely recovered from his broken leg by a grand display in the Central league “Derby” at Goodison Park this morning, which Everton Reserves won 3-1. Hedley kicked and tackled strongly and allowed that he has lost none of his speed, which is good news for Manager Cliff Britton. Liverpool were rather more direct in their methods in the opening stages, but spoiled much good work by hesitancy in front of goal. Gradually Everton took command and went ahead in 32 minutes, following a corner forced by Parker after McIntosh had done the spade work. From the corner Fielding shot was charged down and the ball spun away to Catterick, who promptly hooked it well wide of the diving Crossley.
Everton, who lead by that goal at the interval, applied heavy pressure after the interval and it was only the daring and anticipation of Crossley which prevented them increasing their lead before 57 minutes when Parker, took Eglington’’s pass in his stride, out-witted Cadden, and then beat Crossley with a perfectly placed rising drive into the top far corner of the net. The Everton full backs and half’s were so much on top of their job that the traditionally Liverpool rally failed to materialize, although right-winger Swift reduced the arrears five minutes from the end with a nicely taken header from Watkinson’s cross. Two minutes later however, Catterick seized on Corr’s short forward pass, and went on to slip the ball wide of the advancing Crossley, to put the issue beyond doubt. The game provided a curious mixture of good football and inaccuracy in passing from both sides. Manager Cliff Britton must have been pleased, however, with the promising performance of young amateur Arthur Oakes. Oakes, a native of Bristol, who has completed his miltary services, was playing in his second game for Everton’s second team. Apart from one slip in the second half he showed all the attributes of a first class keeper. Another of Everton’s younger players who showed up well was right half Matt Woods, who comes from Skelmersdale. Possibly a little slow on occasions. Woods at the same time proved that he realize the requirement of the complete wing half and his use of the ball was always judicious. For Liverpool Ray Williams was an enterprising fast-moving leader, but he found Everton’s Falder a dominating personality in the centre-field. Christie did some good work at left half for Liverpool, while left back Parr, for the most part had the masterly of Corr. Final; Everton Reserves 3, Liverpool Reserves 1.
BLUES’ GOAL IN 15 SECONDS
December 24, 1949. The Evening Express
Shock Start To Anfield ‘Derby’
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Liverpool entertained Everton in the still Merseyside Football League ‘Derby’ at Anfield as the start of the Christmas holiday rush. Everton struck the first blow today with a Central League victory, and afterwards the Everton chairman Dr. Cecil S. Baxter and his colleagues entertained the Liverpool directors to luneaon. Billy Higgins reported unfit, so Everton brought in Eddie Wainwright at centre forward for the second game in that position this season. Powell moved back to inside-left so that Peter Farrell, the Irish International played his first League game in his international position of inside-right. Jimmy Payne returned to the Liverpool side after some weeks absence and Liddell moved over to outside left. There was a grand gathering of the fans, and the usual pre-Derby excitement on this day absolutely made for football, with the going perfect and crispness in the air. Liverpool; Sidlow, goal; Lambert and Spicer, backs; Taylor (P.) (captain), Hughes and Jones (W.H.), half-backs; Payne, Baron, Done, Fagan and Liddell, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Moore and Saunders, backs; Grant, Jones (captain), and Lello, half-backs; Buckle, Farrell, Wainwright, Powell, and Eglington, forwards. Referee; Mr. J. Williams (Bolton). This was the first time that Phil Taylor had ever captained Liverpool in a Derby match, and he was as shocked as every Liverpoolian present when right from the kick-off Everton took the lead through Peter Farrell. This goal came after exactly 15 seconds’ play only three men touching the ball before it was in the back of the net. This was a sensational start to the league career at inside right to Farrell, and there is no doubt it was a winder shot which did the trick. From Wainwright to Powell and then Wainwright ran in inside-left to draw Hughes and four yards outside the penalty area slipped the ball square along the floor to his right for Farrell to run in at top pace and crack a glorious foot shot into the top corner of the net. Such was the force of the shot, which literally flashed by the driving Sidlow that it struck the iron net support and bounded right back into play. Farrell gave a whoop of delight as he was smothered by his colleagues. Liverpool were not disheartened and struck hard. Grant making a quick intervention to concede a corner as a safety measure. From this Payne leapt in to Liddell cross but could do no more than put the ball into the crowd.
Everton had to adopt safety measures in calling upon Burnett when Liverpool fought back, with Liddell slipping one ball across on the floor neatly but with no one there to offer the challenge to Everton comfort. This Everton was certainly a leaf out of Farrell’s book and shooting at every opportunity, Lello being just over the top before Powell also was a wee bit off the mark. Tommy Jones took the ball from Done neatly, but ruined it all by passing straight to the unmarked Payne, and it was only a desperate tackle at the last minute which prevented this attack bringing the equalizer, for which the Kop yelled persistently. Baron swung away to the right to make a left-foot shot which, however, flashed yards outside. Then after the enterprising Payne had surprised Saunders the back had to make an exceptionally good recovery tackle to prevent the winger breaking through on his own. Done, withheld his shot, when the position was “made” for him, with his right foot and when he dragged it to the left, his way was barred so much that all he could do was to shoot into the crowd.
December 24, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Board Can Ensure an Era of Harmony and Co-Operation
Shareholders and Supporters will be Loyal if the Club Takes Them in its Confidence
There is a moral in the outcome of the Everton shareholders’ meeting of this week –and one which I have been trying to stress for a long time. If a club takes the people into its confidence when things are going awry, they will back it to the hilt. That was obvious from the tone of the meeting last Wednesday. A refreshing breeze of candour blew away all the harmful rumours which have been growing, snowball fashion, of recent months. The shareholders were satisfied that there was no false spirit of complacency in high quarters managerial or directorial, and many who had come prepared to be highly critical went away with a fresh outlook. One other thing was also clear, namely that Manager Cliff Britton, previously held in high esteem and affection by the vast bulk of the shareholders, came out of the “ordeal” with his reputation considerably enhanced. If he had training for public speaking he could not have done better. There are few managers who could have made such an inspiring and encouraging address. As I have already reported his remarks fully, there is no need to go over the ground in full again. Some points however, call for comment. First, it was good to receive assurances that rumours regarding trouble between the manager and the board, and disaffection in the dressing room are totally unfounded. I don’t suppose that Mr. Britton’s invitation to any shareholder to go along to Goodison himself to talk with the players and het their confirmation is likely to be accepted. The meeting was quite content with his explanation. Obviously every manager from time to time must occasionally have differences of opinion with players. They arise even when clubs are doing well an carrying everything before them. When there is little to choose in ability between two men, and only one can go in the side, the player left out, if he is worth his salt and believes in his own ability – and if he doesn’t he cannot be much use to any club – is bound to feel disappointed.
Tact and Diplomacy
That is where a manager, needs fact and diplomacy. Players cannot be treated like school-boys and just be told to be “good.” Many are rather temperamental. The fact that any Everton player who has something “on his mind” has free access to the managerial sanctum, where every effort be made to clear the air, is all to the good. Nobody could ask for more. The club is greater than any individual player, and the manager, who carries sole responsibility, must be allowed to run things in accordance with his own plans. He stands or falls by his own efforts, and must be the final arbiter. Though no names were mentioned, and Mr. Britton was very guarded in what he said, it was obvious to anybody “reading between the lines” that in their efforts to strengthen the side Everton have been meeting with requests from players for something beyond top wages, benefits, and a house.
Under the Counter?
Whether these demands have actually been illegal requests under Football League rules, or whether they have been limited simply to “a good job outside football,” I am not in a position to say. Managers faced with such demands from players available for transfer, even if the request is not against League laws, are in a difficult position. Star players already on any club’s staff, naturally enough, feel bitterly aggrieved if a newcomer arrives complete with a cushy job found by the club. It is not calculated to foster good team spirit. And team spirit, above all else is what goes to make a successful side. A team of real triers, with that essential asset, will often be far more successful than one of individual stars who are not all pulling together for the common cause. A plea for a better spirit of co-operation and confidence between the board and shareholders was made by Mr. Allen “We are all out for the good of Everton,” he said, “but many shareholders feel there is an ‘iron curtain ‘behind which the directors shelter themselves.” Well, the iron curtain was removed this week. If it remains permanently lifted nothing but good can accrue. I have advocated it long enough.
Don’t Be Pessimistic
The extent to which shareholders were impressed by what they heard was obvious when one of them stated that if the choice lay between Everton being relegated or having to take part in the “slave market,” and pay fabulous sums for players, then he was content to accept relegation. While nobody wants it to come to that –though the task is stern, I am reasonably confident that it will not –the change of attitude on the part of many shareholders was significant. So long as he has time to perfect his plans, Mr. Britton should be able to work out his own and Everton’s salvation, and in course of time the club should have a future just as magnificent as the past. Mr. Britton indicated that his main concentration in future will be producing his own talent from the junior ranks of the club. That takes time, and longer than in the old days now that young players are called to the Forces just when some of them are beginning to be ripe for senior preferment, but Everton are running enough teams to ensure that there should be no shortage of talent in the coming years.
Coaching is Vital
The Britton hammer hit the nail on the head again with the remark that football today is no longer a game, but a business in which players could not get to the top and stay there without being prepared to work hard at it. How often have I said the same the same thing! The alleged “commando” training tactics at Goodison were proved to be a myth. Within reasonable bounds, I shouldn’t have lost any sleep, if the allegation had been admitted. Although players are all well paid for their job, many of them do not train half as hard or as seriously as Continual sides. So long as care is taken to avoid staleness and “fad-up-ness,” the majority of players cannot have too much practice and coaching. Many, admittedly, do not need as much as others. To my way of thinking, the one-footed footballer is an anachronism in these modern times. He may be better with one than the other, but at least every professional should be able to use both, not just keep one solely to preserve his balance.
Several questions were asked at Wednesday’s meeting relating to matters of fairly ancient history. No good purpose can be served by going into these. There may have been mistakes in the past –no club exists which hasn’t made errors –but our main concern is the future. Whatever it may hold –and it is obvious, even with united backing and a loyal and contented staff, that Mr. Britton has a tough job on hand –I trust that the harmonious relations which characterized this week’s meeting will be continued in the future. The board has an excellent opportunity to further this now, without the slightest loss of prestige or dignity, by showing a willingness to at least consider the question of closer co-operation with the Shareholders’ Association. Could they not promise to meet a small delegation from this body whenever it was felt a useful purpose could be served thereby? Such meetings would be needed but seldom. The time spent on them would repay the board handsome dividends in dispelling harmful rumours and demolishing wrong conceptions. It is worth thinking about.
A Good Chance
The club programme is also there to bring the board into closer contact with the rank-and-file supporter who doesn’t have the privileges of shareholders. It could and should be used to keep the man – in – the – street reliably informed on matters in which he is vitally interested. Anything that helps to convince the club’s supporters that he counts in the scheme of things is worthwhile. If the opportunity is taken advantage of, a new era of harmony can he ushered in at Goodison which may last for years, to the ultimately good of the club and the satisfaction of all its followers. It is surely not asking too much that the most should be made of this chance to ensure continued loyalty, understanding, co-operation, and all-round good fellowship. Here’s hoping, any-how.
MANCHESTER MAN’S EXAMPLE TO EVERTON “GROUSERS”
December 24, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
I support Everton and travel down from here every home match, I have not missed a first team game at Goodison for years and don’t intend to if I can help it. What kind of supporters are these people who advocate keeping away from Everton until they find a winning team.” If it is a winning team they want, let them go across the Park, where the “Reds” are obliging their supporters but for goodness sake let them keep away from Goodison. We can well do without them. Win, lose or draw, it is the Blues for me. As the old saying goes “Little Apples will grow again” and the halcvon days of the early thirties will surely return sometime. Every good wish to the old paper, which is greatly admired by all up here –P.J. O’Donoghue, 43 Nansen Close, Gorse Gill, Stretford, Manchester.
FARRELL GOALS WERE BOTH DISCOUNTED
December 28, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
By Leslie Edwards
Liverpool 3, Everton 1
Everton 1, Fulham 1
The Everton holiday story began in full of hope a minute after the start of the “Derby” match against Liverpool at Anfield on Saturday (where Farrell scored) and did it at Fulham yesterday in the second draw in successive days against the Londoners –two useful points, but two rather disappointing Everton’s at Anfield and at Goodison Park on Boxing Day. The Farrell goal at Anfield which held until the interval, was later discounted by two fine goals by Fagan and one by Baron and in the end Liverpool won with much to spare.
At Goodison Park on Boxing Day the anxiety in which the match began was something one hears only rarely in football and what Fulham did immediately afterwards did nothing to easy Everton hopes. The Londoners showed themselves to be a sound, if ageing team, unhurried sometimes to the point of slowness, but always working on solid lines. Everton eventually awakened and Farrell scored at 16 minutes, a lead Everton held until Stevens came along four minutes later to adjust the balance. Why Tom Jones should become involved as he did in the edge-of-the-penalty area, handling to produce this award no one will ever know. Everton can blame themselves that they did not win easily in the second half. They had at least three good chances, and used none, and goalkeeper Kelly, who played splendidly, was equal to all other demands. Burnett made a tremendous one-handed save from Stevens and Grant who had played so brilliantly at Anfield was again hard-working half-back. Buckle was not often brought into the game, but Catterick shaped well, and young Moore put up yet one more very adequate performance at full back. Everton; Burnett, goal; Moore and Saunders, backs; Grant, Jones (captain) and Lello, half-backs; Buckle, Wainwright, Catterick, Farrell and Eglington, forwards. Fulham; Kelly, goal; Freeman and Bacuzzie, backs; Quested, Taylor, and Bessley, half-backs; Stevens, Thomas, Rowley, Jezzard and McDonald, forwards.
LACKED A PLAN
December 28, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
Scored a Point
Fulham 0, Everton 0
Fulham and Everton can never again play so poorly as they did in the return match at Craven Cottage. The result was a goalless draw – a fitting climax to a lot of dull and lifeless forward play. The main trouble with the teams was the lack of a plan. The Everton half-back and forwards appeared to be no more than two sections of the team and the last thing they through, it appeared was to try and work the ball and move it into an open space. As an individual Wainwright put up a brilliant show at inside-right. He was always brimful of enthusiasm and energy. He got some support from Eglington, but generally the Everton forwards were poor. They had the relegation stamp. Burnett shaped well in goal and Moore worked hard at right back. All the Fulham forwards were slow and hesitant especially near goal. This was Fulham’s poorest game of the season. Fulham; Kelly, goal; Freeman and Baccuzzi, backs; Quisted, Taylor and Bealey, half-backs; Stevens, Thomas (R.), Rowley, Jezzard, and McDonald, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Moore and Hedley, backs; Grant, Falder, and Lello, half-backs; Buckle, Wainwright, Catterick, Farrell (captain) and Eglington, forwards.
December 28, 1949, The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton’s tightening-up in defence by the introduction for the League debut of Ted Falder, the young centre-half, and the return to Football League duty of Jack Hedley for the first time since breaking his leg, was half-way towards the gaining of yesterday’s vital point at Fulham as the result of a goalless draw. That was an exceptionally good performance, for do not forget that clubs like Manchester United and Newcastle United have been forced to defeat at Craven Cottage. The draw should encourage the Blues, just as the dropping of the home point to Fulham in Monday’s 1-1 draw must have made them imagine at times that it is not to be their luck to get goals. Take it from me, Everton should have won by four goals, but Wainwright, Catterick, and even successful marksman Farrell missed comparative “sitters.” It was an unhappy day for Tommy Jones, whose cup of bitterness was filled when he handled in stopping a through ball and Stevens equalized from the spot. Irishman Kelly defied Everton late on, while Burnett saved a pound by one mighty save off Stevens, and Moore, Lello and Grant delighted. Believe me that quick through pass by Buckle is going to bring plenty of those safety points. It was one of those passes that enabled Wainwright to go through and make the Farrell goal.
HOPE FOR DUGDALE?
December 28, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
First good news for Evertonians there is a possibility that Gordon Dugdale, after all may not be condemned to early retirement. Everton are sending him for further examination by an eminent Harley Street specials. It will depend on this report whether Dugdale carries on or hands up his boots for good.
Falder and Hedley Played
Everton had two changes yesterday at Craven Cottage, Falder coming in for Jones (Injured) and playing well. Jack Hedley took the place of Saunders, who was rested, thus making his first senior appearance since he broke his leg last February. He came through this test excellently.
Two Minutes Short
The Everton-Fulham game at Goodison on Boxing Day saw the Blues in front for the second time in successive games in the early stages, yet unable to hold on to their advantage. Tommy Jones rarely concerned in penalty incidents handled the ball which led to Fulham equalizing from the spot at the 23rd minute, to balance the goal scored by Farrell in 16 minutes. There-after it was a rather uninspiring struggle between two sides who served up only very ordinary stuff. Missed chances were the order of the day, with both sets of forwards equally remiss with opportunities which just begged for a cool head or a steady foot. Several times shots from range were put straight to the hands of either Burnett or Kelly, or else fired wide or over. Everton’s failure to make the most of what came their way extended even to corners, two of the four they gained in the last few minutes being put behind. According to my watch the referee played two minutes short, which as Everton at the time were well on top, was something of a disappointment though one has to admit that neither the Blues nor Fulham looked as though they would score again, no matter how long it went.
The Derby Game
Saturday’s Derby game, which is now fairly ancient history, was notable mainly for the fact that Farrell scored the quickest goal ever in the long Liverpool series. I made it exactly 12 seconds. Everton were more impressive in the first half than they have been for some time, but the Reds gradually wore then down, and goals to Baron, Fagan and then Baron again put an end to Everton’s hopes of a surprise victory. One got the impression that whereas Everton were taking the last ounce out of themselves in desperate endeavor, Liverpool were playing with just a little in hand all the time.
EVERTON GOING TO BRIGHTON
December 29, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Everton are to undertake special seaside training for their third round Cup-tie against Queen’s Park Rangers on Saturday week and will spend next week at Brighton. Manager Cliff Britton and the Everton directors had an open mind on the question and left the decision to the players themselves. The board did not want to take them away if the players preferred to remain at home. Following a dressing-room “confab” however they voted for special training. After the match at Huddersfield on Saturday the party will return to Liverpool for the week-end, leaving next Monday morning for Brighton. While at the southern resort they hope to have the facilities of the Brighton and Hove Albion club for training. Manager Don Welsh, of Brighton and Manager Cliff Britton are old Army friends who played together for the Army and England on several occasions during the war.
BRIGHTON TONIC FOR EVERTON’S F.A.CUP PLAYERS
December 29, 1949. The Evening Express
Five Days Special Preparation
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Everton’s players will have five days special tuning-up for the January 7 F.A. Cup tie with Queen’s Park Rangers at Shepherd’s Bush. Everton decision is made by the directors to meet the wishes of the players. As I mentioned some weeks ago, Manager Cliff Britton left it to the players themselves when the lads expressed a wish to go away, for a tonic then Mr. Britton mentioned to Chairman Dr. Cecil Baxter and his colleagues and unhesitating they agreed. This will be the first time Everton have sought the benefits of the Brighton ozone to aid them on cup business and I recall being with them there just before the war. Everton play Huddersfield at Leeds-road on Saturday, but return to Liverpool on Saturday to rest on Sunday, and they will set out for the south on Monday, remaining in Brighton until the end of the week, when they go straight to London for the game. Brighton has in recent years been the selected training venue for the English international players for all southern representative matches, and there seems little doubt that our old friend, Manager Don Welsh, of Brighton and Hove Albion will allow Everton to train at the Goldstone-road ground if the Blues so desire. Don and Manager Britton were close colleagues in the A.P.T.C., during the war.
Everton announce that they have a limited supply of tickets for their F.A. Cup match with Queen’s Park Rangers on January 7, and these are now available. The tickets were brought back from London on Monday evening, and are price 6s and 5s. these can be had on making postal application to Goodison Park, and I strongly advise early application for there is only one grand stand at the Shepherd’s Bush ground, which is one of the compact in the country, although there is ample room for improvements when restrictions are eased.
BLUES’ VITAL TASK
December 30, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Although Everton raised themselves one position in the table over the Christmas holiday, this was due more to the failings of Charlton, who have not gained a point from their last six games, than to any great improvement in Everton themselves. Whereas a week ago only four points divided the bottom nine clubs (excluding Birmingham), now this margin is limited to four clubs only. Some of the others who previously were in difficulties, such as Huddersfield and Middlesbrough are looking as if they may pull themselves to safety. Tomorrow Everton play their return fixture with Huddersfield whom they defeated 3-0 at Goodison Park on September 3. The Yorkshire club not only had the honour of being the first to defeat Liverpool, but took four points from Manchester City in the Christmas games. They will now have greater confidence in themselves and with home advantage, plus the fact that victory over Everton would be worth double points, means that they will be a hard side to master. If only Everton can reproduce the form they showed against Middlesbrough or the first half display in the Liverton “derby” at Anfield and then keep it up to the finish, they will at least have a chance of dividing the spoils. There must, however, e no frittering away of good scoring chances, such as they were guilty of against Fulham on Boxing Day. Everton shareholders brightened Christmas for manager Cliff Britton with their unanimous vote of confidence. Now the team itself, by a united effort and more fighting spirit can also earn the thanks of the manager and supporters by getting away from the dangerous position in which it has hibernated all too long. Everton will field the same side as drew at Fulham on Tuesday. McIntosh and Humphreys are not fit and Jones is still feeling the effects of an ankle injury, so that Falder continues at centre half. Hedley remains at left back, with Saunders twelfth man. Huddersfield also will be unchanged. Huddersfield; Mills; Hayes, Howe (J); Whittaker, Hepplewhite, Morgan; McKenna, Glazzard, Burke, Hassell, Metcalfe. Everton; Burnett; Moore, Hedley; Grant, Falder, Lello; Buckle, Wainwright, Catterick, Farrell, Eglington.
Everton Reserves (v. Huddersfield Reserves at Goodison 2.15); Sagar; Clinton, Rankin; Woods, E. Forshaw, Bentham; Corr, Fielding, Higgins, Powell, Parker.
December 30, 1949. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Everton defeated Huddersfield 3-0 when they clashed at Goodison, but since then Town have Ron Burke back after injury and have strengthened their defence by the acquisition from Derby County of international Jack Howe one of the few players to play in contact lenses. Everton’s improved defence, as shown at Fulham gives high hopes of bringing back at least a point and if the forwards acquire the faculty of taking the chances their own good leading-up football creates, then Leeds-road may once again prove a lucky points producing centre. Everton rely on the X1 which did so well in drawing at Fulham, so Jack Hedley continues at left-back and Ted Falder retains the centre half berth for the second game and with Farrell once more at inside-left. Everton; Burnett; Moore, Hedley; Grant, Falder, Lello; Buckle, Wainwright, Catterick, Farrell, Eglington.
EVERTON ATTACK NOT IMPRESSIVE AFTER EARLY SET-BACK
December 31, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Huddersfield 1, Everton 2
Huddersfield Town; Mills, goal; Hayes and Howe (J), backs; Whittaker, Hepplewhite and Morgan, half-backs; McKenna, Glazzard, Burke, Hassell, and Metcalfe, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Moore, and Hedley, backs; Grant, Falder, and Lello, half-backs; Buckle, Wainwright, Catterick, Farrell (captain), and Eglington, forwards. Referee; Mr. C. Dalmon (Stoke-On-Trent). Everton played the side which drew at Fulham on Tuesday, and Huddersfield Town, included Glazzard for the injured Nightingale. The pitch was heavily sanded. McKenna, who seems to specialize in opening well, had the Everton defence all at sea in the first minute right wing dash –but his centre hit the side net. It was a cracking start –both sides playing at top speed, and Falder and Hedley doing nobly. Hedley did particularly well when he took possession five yards from goal from McKenna, who was coming through and liable to score in a characteristic burst. Eglington’s cross field pass to Buckle was perfect, but when the winger pushed the ball through for Catterick he was not quick enough to pick it up. Falder’s live and lusty centre half back play was refreshing; moreover he used the ball well. Burnett was quickly out to pick up from the light-haired Burke and at this stage I discovered that the Hassell at inside left was none other than the young Western Command half back who played against Everton at Aldershot last year.
Strange Free Kick
He was full of promise in those days. A Lello miskick led to a strange free kick against his side – an indirect one six or seven yards from goal. Morgan took it in a novel way, merely back-heeling it for Hassall, whose low shot struck the foot of the post and came back into play. Burnett with a punch away against several challengers was a busy man though Huddersfield, for all their superiority at this stage, had produced only one shot. Metcalf began and completed a leading goal at 18 minutes. He sped along his wing with Moore, losing ground in the race at almost every stride and then, by pushing the ball a good five yards ahead, found himself played in the centre. By this time Falder had come out to cover him and there was no mistaking the handling offence which occurred. Metcalfe scored from a placed shot from the penalty spot. Buckle, pulling his centre a trifle too much in Everton’s next attack beat all his own side except Eglington, who lost the ball to Hayes as he turned in an effort to find an opening for a right foot shot. Metcalfe this time coming inside dug up a fine pass for Buckle, who had moved to inside left, but Everton played this move offside. Burnett next made a superb two-handed catch off a Burke centre from the left, and Wainwright hit one of his fiercest shots over the bar. Hedley seemed to have recovered completely from his leg break, and as to hi nerve, that seems to be absolutely unimpaired. Howe was prepared to handle a surprise pass from Buckle to save the situation, but Grant’s free kick went for a goal kick. Everton, who were playing in white, were far from impressive in attack, and even the veteran Hayes was having a good match. Burke should have scored a second, but instead his shot across the face of the goal. Burnett was soon repeating his early catch –this time from a Burke centre. Burnett added yet one more clean and graceful catch from a McKenna corner which the little man had won against Falder and Hedley. More often than not Hedley had thus mercurial Irishman fairly well taped.
Lack of Directness
The Everton forwards looked as though they were playing to a plan, but there was nothing incisive about them, and this lack of directness and the apparent inclination pass on the onus of shooting made an ordinary Huddersfield defence look very good. At this stage even Huddersfield were making innumerable mistakes. Quite easily Metcalfe might have put in a carbon copy of the first goal. He beat Moore for speed again and centred and Burnett did brilliantly when coming out to take possession at the second attempt. Wainwright hitting a right-wing corner, placed the ball so wide as to finish on the roof of the stand behind the goal. The one Everton forward playing well was Eglington. He went down his wing in a duel with Farrell, found his big shot crowded out, but succeeded in getting in a short pass to Buckle, whose cut in was a failure. Mills made a fine full length save from Catterick right on the interval. Half-time; Huddersfield Town 1, Everton 0.
Catterick tried a long take-a-chance shot immediately the second half began, but even in the bad light there was not a great chance of Mills missing his catch. Mills did his most valuable work when he won a race for the ball when Grant pushed a fast through pass between the goalkeeper and Wainwright. Mills not only got there first, he escaped what might have been a nasty collision. Huddersfield were lucky when Hepplewhite blundered and Catterick put the ball across into what looked like an open goal. But this time Howe had dropped back and held off Hepplewhite his own centre half back, who was prepared to give a corner to allow the ball to go for a goalkick. Burnett with a fine collection of a Burke centre earned further medals.
At 60 minutes Everton in the most direct move they had made, got the equalizer. Wainwright was the scorer but much of the credit goes to Eglington, who took the ball up 30 yards before passing to Buckle. Buckle had the defence going the wrong way before putting up for the scorer the kind of pass off which it was almost impossible not to score. Wainwright injured in collision knelt on the field and appeared unable to move and a stretcher was signaled for. So Everton were called upon to last the remaining 15 minutes with a big handicap. Final; Huddersfield 1, Everton 2.
EVERTON RES V HUDDERSFIELD RES
December 31, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton Res; Sagar, goal; Clinton and Rankin, backs; Woods, Forshaw (E.), and Bentham (captain), half-backs; Corr, Fielding, Higgins, Powell, Parker
Huddersfield Res; Wheeler, goal; Gallogly and Stewart, backs; Hinchcliffe, Senior and Lonsdale, half-backs; Bateman, Chapman, Taylor, Yates, and Duthie, forwards. Referee; Mr. A. Hughes (Stoke-On-Trent). Everton had many of their first team players on view today, with Sagar in goal and Higgins leading their attack. Wheeler, the Huddersfield goalkeeper, had a grueling task in saving splendid shots from Corr, Higgins and Powell. The Everton goal, had a narrow escape, when Duthie hit the crossbar with a lightning shot. In the 26th minute Higgins gave the Blues the lead from close range, and just on the interval Powell missed a sitter. Half-time; Everton 1, Huddersfield Town nil.
Everton after the restart soon became busy. The Huddersfield goalkeeper doing well to save his charge with timely shots from Higgins and Powell. Sagar had not an easy time. He had to be on his best behavior to bring off good saves from Dathie and Taylor. Everton should have taken the lead when Higgins missed a golden opportunity from 10 yards out.