LAWTON’S CHANCE FOR GOAL RECORD
February 1, 1945. The Evening Express
Tommy Lawton, the England and Everton centre-forward, has a long way to go before he sets up all-time record figures for goal-getting. Yet with years of football life before him this young Boltonian who leads England against Scotland on Saturday at Villa Park, should outscore both W.R. (Dixie) Dean, his predecessor in the Everton team, and Jimmy McGrory, famous Glasgow Celtic leader. Last Saturday Lawton scored his 400th goal in first class football after nine years in the highest sphere, but Tommy still requires 52 goals to beat Den’s grand aggregate of 451 in all matches and 151 to overtake McGrory’s overhaul total of 530. A Scottish friend and record-keeper states that in all internationals, representatives games, trials cup and League matches McGrory scored 550 goals. Well, we know that Dean in his wonder career scored 376 Football league goals with Tranmere Rovers, Everton and Notts County. I have been delving through the dusty files seeking Dean goals in an effort to produce Dixie’s grand total. In F.A. Cup Ties Dean scored 28 goals, and in internationals, Inter-League, trials and F.A. Charity Shields matches Dixie netted 47 times. This makes Dean’s grand total 451. Goals scored with Sligo Rovers and Hurst, the Cheshire County League side, are not included as that was not in first-class football. Dean’s representative match and cup figures from 1925-26 season onwards were (internationals figures given first); 1924-25-26, 0-0; 1926-27 16-3; 1927-28, 19-3; 1928-29 4-0; 1929-30, 0-2; 1930-31, 3-9; 1931-32 1-1; 1932-33 4-5; 1933-34, 0-0; 1934-35, 0-1; 1935-36, 0-1; 1936-37, 0-3; 1937-38, 0-0; 1938-39, 0-0. Totals 47 and 28.
There is not the slightest doubt that if Lawton does eventually exceed the figures of Dean and McGrory that it will be accepted universally as an all-time record. The authorities –the Football League and the Football Association –do not really acknowledge records and figures require no official “recognition.” As a matter of fact it is the newspapers statisticians who make the records and being accepted generally by the sports writers become official records. I have talked the matter over with some of my co-writes and they agree that if Lawton does pull it off then the record must stand. In other words they agree that Lawton must not be made to suffer just because a war has intervened in his career. One paramounted fact must not be forgotten, Dean, McGrory and Lawton have scored their goals in the highest class of football pertaining at the time. It matters not weather present war football is not as hard as peacetime fare, the fact remains that Lawton is scoring under the auspices of the Football League and F.A.
Tommy has a good chance of beating the League totals of Dean, Bloomer and McGrory, too. At the moment stands at 292 in the League goals race as compared with Dean’s 376, Bloomer’s 352, and McGrory’s 410. So Bloomer’s 353 becomes vour first target, Tommy Go to it.
Secretary Mr. Theo Kelly, of Everton, cannot make any definite announcement about his team for Saturday’s “Derby” with Liverpool now all set for Goodison Park, but will be able to do so within hours. In the junior fields the main attraction is the Mahon Cup-tie at Anfield between Liverpool Reserves and Everton Reserves, when the Reds should carry on their wartime supremacy over the Blues. Everton Reserves; J.A. Jones; Painter, K. Griffths; (former team mate of Shannon, Liverpool); Mellings, Rees, Doyle (will captain Liverpool F.A. Youths’ team); F. Jones, Ashley, Booth, Taylor (also in Liverpool F.A. team), Makin (or Lee).
Everton Colts (v. Deeside Rangers at West Kirby); Gardiner; T. Jones, Rankin; Dolby, Cookson, Tansey; Richardson, Gatherer, Quayle, G, Hannah, Peters.
ONE POINT NEEDED
February 2, 1945, The Evening Express
Everton go into the “Derby” in the knowledge that they need only one point to make certain of qualifying for the competition proper and I think that will be their return from the latest tilt at the Reds who, in recent season’s have had much the better of the local argument.” Everton have yet to defeat Liverpool this season, two games ending in a draw and Liverpool winning the other two –both at Goodison Park. Liverpool still have a 100 per cent record in the competition for neither of their matches with Tranmere Rovers was played. However, the Reds can count on a good points percentage for those matches if the League decides not to ask for a season extension. So the Reds are certain to qualify if they manage to avoid defeat. They must get two points at least for the non-played games. Everton’s only change from last week’s nine goals side is Catterick for Lawton, and Liverpool will be without Welsh, one of the bogy men in the Blues, but rejoice that Cumner and Niuewenhuys are available, and that Jack Blood steps in for Harley. If Everton play as well as they did in the two Stockport games they will win, but the Liverpool boys have had a nice rest, and at Goodison Park they seemed to accomplish and I fancy the defence will prove supreme with Laurie Hughes (now fully recovered from his back injury) and Tommy Jones proving two of the most attractive figures. Secretary Mr. Theo Kelly says that all parts of the ground (that includes the paddock) will be opened except the old goal, double Decker. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Grant, Tommy Jones, Watson; Rawlings, Bentham, Catterick, Stevenson, McIntosh. Liverpool; Hobson; Blood, Gulliver; Kaye, Hughes, Pillings; Campbell, Nieuwenhuys, Taylor, Cumner, Hulligan.
37TH LIVERTON GAME
February 2, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Though the heavy call on our internationals effect the teams for the Everton-Liverpool Cup-tie at Goodison Park, it isn’t likely to detract from the thrills and excitement inherent in a tussle between these old but friendly rivals. This will be their fifth meeting this season and the 37th since the war started. Seems a lot in just over five years, but neither custom nor frequency can state the irresistible attraction of a “Liverton” clash. Of the four previous games this season, three of which have been at Goodison, Liverpool have won two and drawn two, while in all the 26 war-time games the Reds have won 17, the Blues 14, and five have been drawn. There isn’t much in it –and may be less after to-morrow, for I fancy Everton to win this time, though Liverpool are so unpredictable that it will be no surprise if they come out on top again. Everton will have Catterick at centre forward in place of Lawton otherwise they are unchanged. So long as the better side wins I shall be content, be it Red or Blue. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Grant, Tommy Jones, Watson; Rawlings, Bentham, Catterick, Stevenson, McIntosh. Liverpool; Hobson; Blood, Gulliver; Kaye, Hughes, Pillings; Campbell, Nieuwenhuys, Taylor, Cumner, Hulligan.
February 3, 1945. The Evening Express
Everton Win 4-1
The non-arrival of Nieuwenhuys and Cumner forced Liverpool to make last-minute experiments for the North Cup Qualifying competition “Derby” with Everton at Goodison Park today. Blood, the Exeter City full back, was included at centre-forward, Taylor going to inside right, and Kinghorn and Hulligan comprising the left wing. Fortunately, Jack Westby made one of his rare appearances at right back. Everton too, were forced to make a change, Wyles being a centre forward in place of Catterick, who is suffering from a poisoned leg. This was the fifth meeting of the clubs this season, and Everton were still seeking their first win. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Grant, Jones (T.G.), and Watson, half-backs; Rawlings (Millwall), Bentham, Wyles, Stevenson and McIntosh (Preston), forwards. Liverpool; Hobson, goal; Westby and Gulliver, backs; Kaye, Hughes, and Pillings, half-backs; Campbell, Taylor (captain), Blood (Exeter City), Kinghorn, and Hulligan, forwards. Referee; Mr. G. Twist (Westhoughton). Everton opened on a bright note, McIntosh centring accurately for Rawlings and Wyles to dash in, but Hobson came out to take charge just when it looked as if the Blues would be a goal up before Liverpool had a kick at the ball. Taylor, captain of the Reds who had forsaken their usual ring stockings for black, changed the locale, but it was only brief, and Everton were soon back again, Wyles shooting over from an impossible angle. Stevenson and McIntosh won the first corner of the day, and from this Wyles headed outside, and after a bright two minutes by Grant, Everton kept in control, only to find Westby and Gulliver exceptionally clever with their interventions. At last Liverpool got moving, but Tommy Jones dealt with the Kinghorn-Hulligan danger, and when Burnett failed to get hold of the goalkick, the ball went straight to Blood, who, however, shot yards wide. Wyles went through with a cross-shot, which Hobson dived to and turned aside for Westby to complete the clearance at the expense of a corner. From this Liverpool packed so well that Wyles could not find a passage through to goal. Hobson twice fisted away from the head of McIntosh, and then Taylor was fouled 25 yards out, but Everton’s barrier of players proved better than Blood’s free kick.
Everton Attacks Held.
Having dealt with Everton’s opening threats, Liverpool came more into the game; but Hulligan wasted their first corner, and then Stevenson and Bentham got Everton away. The ball came wide to Rawlings, who however, made a hole in the crowd through shooting far too quickly. Taylor fell heavily when trying to hook the ball over Greenhalgh’s head and was injured but resumed after attention. Gulliver cleverly headed off Wyles when the centre forward was going through, and from a free kick for a foul on Rawlings, the Liverpool defence again covered so effectively that Hobson was not worried. However, when McIntosh centred Hobson came out only to fine Rawlings heading the ball over his head to the net. As it was passing under the bar, Hughes dropped back and headed behind for a corner –the biggest thrill of the day so far. Tommy Jones’s classic centre half play, and the perfect distribution of Stevenson, were outstanding features of a keen game, in which Everton were proving the better side. Bentham had the cruellest of luck when he shot from just inside the penalty area, the ball striking the bar and going over. As a diversion, Blood tried to dash through from Campbell’s pass but Jones was there to say him nay. Burnett caught a dangerous centre from Campbell, and Hobson was on the spot to take charge of a centre by Wyles before Stevenson went through with a shot which swerved outside.
Everton took the lead in 40 minutes through Wyles. Watson had sent McIntosh away. McIntosh turned back and centred with his right foot to the penalty spot. Wyles allowed the ball to glide off his forehead, and it slipped into the net just by the post. This lead was by no means undeserved, for Everton had been much the better team. Two minutes before the interval, Everton scored a brilliant second goal through Rawlings. Stevenson was the maker, for his speed and control as he ran through to the goal line completely outwitted the Liverpool defence. From the goal line he adroitly turned the ball back along the floor for Rawlings to crash it into the net from close range.
Half-time; Everton 2, Liverpool 0.
Everton were not-flattered by their two-goals lead, and they resumed where they had left-off. Rawlings cut in, but was stopped on the goal line by Hughes after Hobson had been drawn out of goal. Stevenson found an open space for Rawlings, but the winger’s shot went sailing over the bar. For long periods nothing was seen of the Liverpool attack; in fact, the Reds were finding it extremely difficult to shake off the close attentions of Jones, Grant and Watson. Hulligan at last brought some life into the Liverpool attack, and after having forced a corner off Jackson, he went through again to withstand two tackles and putting through to goal. Burnett dashed out and managed to kick the ball clear, but he and Hulligan came into collision and Hulligan was carried off. Pillings seized on the loose ball to shoot while Burnett was out of goal, but the ball travelled high and wide. Liverpool won another corner without success, and then Hulligan came back after three minutes. A faulty back-pass by McIntosh and the alterness of Campbell immediately placed the Everton goal in jeopardy, but Grant doubled back to withstand the challenge of Taylor, and then Jones dashed over to hold up Hulligan who racing in for a shot. When Taylor centred Burnett fisted away from the head of Hulligan; and when Pilling joined in the attack he centred for the goal line but the ball swerved behind.
Liverpool, although not comparable with Everton from an academic point of view, were, however, piling on the pressure with their rapier-like threats. Wyles shot across goal after being put through by McIntosh, and with the Liverpool half-backs concentrating completely on attack, Taylor tried a hook shot, but Jones was there to head away for a corner. Liverpool had been hammering at the Everton goal for about 10 minutes but it was Everton who got the reward for in 75 minutes McIntosh increased their lead to three. Wyles had gone to outside-right and he slipped the ball inside to Bentham who, instead of shooting, glided the ball across for McIntosh to dash in at top pace and place, low into the far corner of the net. Hobson having not the ghost of a chance. A few minutes later Everton were four up with a gift goal –a tragedy of errors for Liverpool. Menaced by Bentham and Stevenson, Hughes tried to pass the ball back, but it touched Rawlings and bounced on towards Hobson. Hobson seemed to have the ball well covered, but it bounced out of his hands and went into the net. Two minutes from time Taylor reduced the lead with a cross-shot after surviving two tackles. Final; Everton 4, Liverpool 1.
EVERTON V. LIVERPOOL
February 3, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Grant, Jones (T.G.), and Watson, half-backs; Rawlings (Millwall), Bentham, Wyles, Stevenson and McIntosh (Preston), forwards. Liverpool; Hobson, goal; Westby and Gulliver, backs; Kaye, Hughes, and Pillings, half-backs; Campbell, Taylor (captain), Blood (Exeter City), Kinghorn, and Hulligan, forwards. Referee; Mr. G. Twist (Westhoughton). Both teams had team worries. Liverpool in particular being sorely troubled, with Nieuwenhuys and Camner important absentee. Mr. Kay, however, got over his difficulty by some switching about. Everton had Wyles at centre forward in place of Catterick, who was unable to play because of a poisoned foot. There was a fair crowd to see the opening phrases of this local derby, and plenty of people were coming in. Almost in their first advance Everton put the Liverpool goal under fire, McIntosh making a dribble and centre which looked full of danger, but the Liverpool defence survived. Grant gave Rawlings an excellent opportunity, but the Everton winger made a poor centre. The Liverpool right flank got into action, but found the Everton defence standing firm against their call. Wyles showed when he elected to shoot from an angular position, and Hobson was unable to hold the ball, but turned it away for a co-defender to complete the clearance. Wyles was almost through in the next half minute, but numbers foiled him. Blood’s snap shot was off the mark, but in the main Everton were able to hold Liverpool’s attack fairly comfortably. Liverpool came more into the game and the Everton full backs had to put in strong work. Bentham got a ball in the face, still plastered from his injury against Stockport and when Blood, was going through he was brought to earth and had to receive attention. Grant was putting up fine passes to Rawlings, who should have scored when Stevenson gave him a well-placed pass but he showed the ball wide of the goal.
EASY FOR EVERTON
February 5, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 4, Liverpool 1
Everton beat Liverpool 4-1 at Goodison in a game which fell short of anticipation of its tussles to provide the keenness and enthusiasm which had been delivered to so many previous games at Goodison. Everton were always the better side, and
Unfortunately the reading of this is unreadable
Hobson was undeniably at fault with two occasions. He went for Wyles header much too late and what happened when Hughes passed back to him I wouldn’t say.
Rawlings goal was the best of the day for the engineering of it was fine, Stevenson and McIntosh paving the way. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Grant, Jones (T.G.), and Watson, half-backs; Rawlings (Millwall), Bentham, Wyles, Stevenson and McIntosh (Preston), forwards. Liverpool; Hobson, goal; Westby and Gulliver, backs; Kaye, Hughes, and Pillings, half-backs; Campbell, Taylor (captain), Blood (Exeter City), Kinghorn, and Hulligan, forwards. Referee; Mr. G. Twist (Westhoughton).
• Everton reserves lost to Liverpool Reserves 2-3, Makin scored one
• Mercer and Lawton played for England against Scotland, England winning 3-2.
February 5, 1945. The Evening Express
That Everton have at last broken the Liverpool monopoly and that many stars will be back for duty builds up for a wonder day at Anfield on Saturday for the return. Tommy Lawton, a genius but no scorer in England’s latest triumph over Scotland (3-2 at Villa Park) plays for the Blues and the Reds will rejoice in rewelcoming Berry Nieuwenhuys, Billy Liddell, Jim Harley and Don Welsh. There may be more old friends returning to the Anfield side. It should prove one of the best “Derby” game of the war. In congratulating Everton on their latest win, spare just a sympathetic thought for Liverpool, who ran up against a packet of trouble even before the game began. Faced with the non-appearance of star men. Vice-Chairman Mr. Ronnie Williams deputising as Reds leader because Mr. Billy McConnell was at the international, Mr. W. Harvey Webb and manager Mr. George Kay had an informal meeting in the corridor at Goodison Park 20 minutes before the kick-off to decide the most serviceable combination in the circumstances. That the held experiment of playing Blood at centre-forward was not successful was not entirely due to Blood’s strangeness in the position but rather to the fact that too much was thrown on to Phil Taylor. Taylor tried to do the work of two inside forwards and also hold the line together and it was beyond the powers of even such a good player as Phil. Lack of success forward seemed to affect the other divisions on a day when nothing would go right for the Reds. Even Alf Hobson made two mistakes which cost goals, but not only for Hobson was it “one of those days.” Main reason for Liverpool’s failure of course, was the brilliance of Everton. The Blues were masters from the word “go “and if the game fell below usual “Derby” standards on the point of excitement; it was not because of Everton, who treated us to delightful football. No, the game suffered by reason of its one-sidedness.
Vital First Goal
Let us not shut our eyes to the truth, Liverpool were outclassed and I know Liverpool felt grateful that they got away with only four against. Everton derived tremendous encouragement from the vital first goal and apart from a period of about 10 minutes in the second half Liverpool were generally struggling. During that bright space, it was the wing half-backs, Kaye, and Pillings, who hurled the attack through, but generally it was a case of a galliant. Liverpool defence opposing an in predicable and delightful Everton. The Blues pulled out every trick “in the bag” and made it pay. They bewildered Liverpool by the penchant for doing the unexpected and had they not eased up in the second half would have doubled their scores. As it was they were content with the Wyles, Rawlings –a masterly step over the ball by Wyles, brought this –McIntosh –a perfect example of goal-making and taking –and a fourth which was in the nature of a “gift” Taylor deserved his late on consolation goal, for he was Liverpool’s most assertive forward. Gulliver and Westby stood up manfully to severe tests, and Gulliver was not far behind Greenhalgh –his best games of the season –and Jackson, which is praise indeed, Hughes saved his side many times, and Kaye and Pillings were fine, but Kinghorn was as much out of his element as Blood, and so Campbell –always a potential danger –and Hulligan had to be too individualistic.
Good Little Uns
Apart from the classic play of the Everton backs, Tommy Jones –he made the job look a sinecure by a his very precision –Watson and Bentham –yes, bang in form –I was placed as much by the work of the “little uns” as anything else. I refer of course, to Alex Stevenson and Jack Grant and Cecil Wyles. Stevenson was the best man of the 22 –a variable football magician accomplished and cheeky enough to hold a ball when surrounded by six red jerseys. Yes six. And he got away with it. Stevenson alone was worth the admission money to any of the 26,718 present (days best gate apart from Villa Park), and Grant was the epitome of grim tenacity and perpetual motion. Grant has always been a great tacker and intervener, but here we saw him also as an opening-creator. His use of the ball was excellent proving that Master Jack “has arrived.” Wyles led the line exceptionally well. Rawlings and McIntosh were in marry vein in an Everton never ruffled, never worried or never in danger. Yes, Everton “cashed in” on Liverpool’s misfortunes, but their manner of doing it delighted friend and foe, in a sporting game excellently controlled by Mr. George Twist, of Westhougton who was bang on top of his job.
EVERTON’S EASY WIN
February 5, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Most of the “Liverton” games have something to command them. They rarely fall short of anticipation, for there is usually that friendly but keen rivalry about them which makes such games stand out. The one at Goodison on Saturday, however, was an exception, and there was little in it worth remembering. It was one of the poorest if not the poorest, “Liverton” meetings I have seen. The reason was international calls and, where Liverpool were concerned, much shuffing to find a team worthy of the occasion. It is not a habit of mine to make excuses (writes Stork), but I must tell of Liverpool’s team worries. Directors were outside the dressing-room waiting to see who turned up and then had to make the best use of the material on hand. A team was chosen, but it was one with nothing like a Liverpool attack. It was a “shadow” line” without power or penetration, and therefore an easy victim to the Everton defenders. Everton had one worry. Catterick was not available, but they had Wyles on the spot. No one desires to see an uneven duel, but it just had to be, and the wonder was that Everton did not score a bigger victory. They could have done had they deemed it necessary, despite the valiant efforts of the Anfielders, half and full backs. Everton were by far and away the cleverer side, playing with a swung, rhythm, punch, and a sound defence, and were on top practically throughout.
JIM DUNN’S THREE SONS
February 8, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Jimmy Dunn, former Scottish International and Everton forward, has three youngsters following in father’s footsteps. Jimmy, the elder has been earning high praise with Wolverhampton Wanderers, and on Saturday two younger brothers will make their debut in Everton Colts’ team. They are John aged 17, outside left, and Tom, aged 15, inside left. The game is at Orrell Lane, when an Ellesmere Port works side provide the opposition. A young Southport’s cadet Jackie Linaker, hit the headlines two years back by jumping straight from A.T.C football into Everton’s first team against Liverpool. Linaker didn’t quite settle down with the Goodison colts after, and has thrown in with Manchester City, for whose reserves he plays on Saturday.
Everton Reserves (v. Liverpool Reserves, at Goodison Park); Leigh; Painter, lever; J.J. Doyle, Rees, Cookson; F. Jones, Ashley, Booth, Wootton, Lee.
IN FATHER'S FOOTSTEPS
Liverpool Evening Express - Thursday 08 February 1945
Tommy, aged 17, and John, aged 15, sons of Jimmy Dunn, the former Everton and Scotland Inside-right, will comprise the left-wing In Everton Colts team against Ellesmere Port Social at Orrell-lane on Saturday. Both will be making their debut for the club with whom their father gained an F.A. Cup winner's medal. An elder son, Jimmy, plays for Wolverhampton Wanderers.
EVERTON F.C. DIRECTOR
Liverpool Evening Express - Friday 09 February 1945
Dies At Function
Mr. R. R. Turnbull, Hovedene, Dowhills-road, Blundelisands, former managing-director of Grayson, Rollo and Clover Docks Ltd, and Everton F.C, director dead at a function at the Masonic Hall, Hope-Street, Liverpool last night. Mr. Turnbull had been installed in the chair at the consecration of the Perserverance Chapter. he was about to replay to a toast when he said, Excuse me,” sat down, collapsed, and died. The function was terminated immediately (Pilot). Mr. Turnbull joined the J.D. Installation Co. after leaving Graysons. He was co-opted to the Everton directorate in 1936, but retired on the formation of the Shareholders' Association. He was elected to the board again in 1942 and attended the matches up to last Saturday. Mr. Turnbull leaves a widow and two sons, both in the Services.
LIVERPOOL’S “DERBY” EXPERIEMENT PLAN
February 9, 1945. The Evening Express
Liverpool may repeat an experiment which showed such a success last season, when they face Everton in the return North Cup qualifying Competition “Derby” at Anfield tomorrow. This is the playing of Scottish international right back, Jim Harley, at outside right. Manager George Kay Sprang quite a surprise at Goodison Park last season –October 9, 1943 was the date –when a few minutes before the game he announced that Harley would be at outside right. Mr. Kay’s confidence in the ability of a born footballer to do well anywhere was amply justified for Harley scored in helping the Reds to a 6-4 win. For the return match the following week Harley again played outside right and again scored –the first in Liverpool’s 5-2 win. So with the club facing forward difficulties tomorrow look out for the Royal Navy man again being pitted against Greenhalgh. This will release Jack Campbell to go to outside left as partner. Don Welsh, leaving Taylor as leader of the line and Niuwenhuys at inside-right, when he has been such an inspiration. For the right back berth there is Blood, so that all Mr. Kay’s troubles would be at an end. This will be the sixth meeting of the clubs this season, and so far the Reds have scored two wins Everton one –last week’s 4-1 success –and two games have been drawn. The only match at Anfield this term ended in a goalless draw. Everton won so easily last week, that many will fancy them to complete a “double” at the ground where they usually do well, but I can warm the Blues that they will be meeting a much stronger Liverpool than a week ago.
This is offset, of course, by the fact that Tommy Lawton scorer of 400 goals and England’s leader, will be back to captain the side and lead the forwards. Lawton is worth a couple of goals start and day, for besides getting them he can provide them, Maurice Lindley, who played with such marked consistency before going on a R.A.F course, is available again and so can step back to centre-half with Tommy Jones again on the injured list. Rawlings cannot play, but Mr. Kelly expects to secure another star outside right. Throughout this season Everton have dropped only three points away from home –in 13 engagements, Wrexham defeated them and Liverpool held them to that draw. Danger man to Everton, if one can gauge by previous encounters in recent seasons, and in which the Reds have had by far the better of the argument, is Welsh. The Charlton international has a happy knack of being able to worry the England defence to a point of panic at times. However, I can assure Don that his rival, Jack Grant is playing magnificently just now. There will be a collection at the match on behalf of the Liverpool Sportsmen Association, which does such grand work for boys in sports, and I hope spectators –there should be 30,000 –will support this generously. The players will wear black armlets for Mr. R. R. Turnbull the Everton director, who died last night.
Liverpool; Hobson; Blood, Gulliver; Kaye, Hughes, Pillings; Harley, Niuwenhuys, Taylor, Welsh, Campbell. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Grant, Lindley, Watson; A.N. Other, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, McIntosh.
February 9, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
The Anfielders are within easy striking distance of the leaders despite last week’s defeat at Goodison Park, when team troubles gave them little chance from the start. Their scratch forward line I’m told never got out of the grip of the Everton defenders, and it was astonishing that they scored at all. By the same token, it was amazing that Everton did not run up a much bigger goal crop. The return game at Anfield tomorrow is not likely to be such a walk-over, for Liverpool will have some of their absentees back, which will make a big difference. The driving power in attack which was so lacking a week ago will be there tomorrow, for Welsh and Niuwenhuys can weld it into a forceful line, as against a number of units. It was only forward failings that cost Liverpool so dearly. The defence was sound enough, despite the extra burden it had to shoulder. Everton have been playing excellent football in recent weeks. Even the snow-capped pitches did not put then off their stroke. Though they will be without Tommy Jones, Lindley is such a worthy deputy that his absence is not so serious as it otherwise might be. The return of Lawton means a lot to Everton. He is an inspiration to the whole side, as well as the greatest opportunist in the game. Lawton will keep the Liverpool defence strictly on its toes and may take it out of them for his blank day against Scotland, when his unselfishness led to him to sink his own aims in order to provide goals for others. It is going to be a grim struggle and naming the winner is not easy. With their strengthened side Liverpool may pull it off. If they do they will make me a bad prophet, for I am saying right now that I anticipate either an Everton victory of a draw, though I don’t care two hoots which way it goes so long as we get a good and clean game and no “injustices.”
Death of Mr. R.R.Turnbull
I regret to announce the death of Mr. R.R. Turnbull, Everton director, details of which are given elsewhere in this issue. Liverpool; Hobson; Blood, Gulliver; Kaye, Hughes, Pillings; Harley, Niuwenhuys, Taylor, Welsh, Campbell. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Grant, Lindley, Watson; A.N. Other, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, McIntosh.
DIRECTOR OF EVERTOJN FOOTBALL CLUB
Liverpool Daily Post - Saturday 10 February 1945
Died At Masonic Gathering
MR. R. Turnbull, a well-known Liverpool business man and a director of Everton Football Club died suddenly on Thursday night. He was attending a Masonic consecration of new chapter. Perseverance, of which he had just been installed the first head, and was rising to reply to a toast when he collapsed, and died almost immediately. He had not enjoyed good health for some years. Mr. Turnbull unanimously elected to the board of Everton Football Club three years ago. He has been life-long supporter of Everton, and has done splendid work for the club. For many years Mr. Turnbull was connected with Grayson, Rollo and Clover Docks, and afterwards with the J.D. Insulation Company. He was president the Lyceum Club in 1935. He resided Dowhills Road, Blundellsands. and leaves _ wife and two sons, both the latter being in the Forces.
L’POOL’S ‘DERBY’ WIN WELL DESERVED
February 10, 1945. The Evening Express
There are no fewer than eight internationals in the Merseyside cup “derby” between Liverpool and Everton at Anfield today. Four stars returned to both clubs for this, the sixth meeting of the season. Liverpool had a welcome surprise in the appearance of Welsh international, Cumner at outside left, and with Rawlings unavailable, Everton welcomed back Wally Boyes, the English International to outside right, this being only his second appearance since his cartilage operation. The players of both teams wore black armlets, and stood for a short time in silence before the game in memory of Mr. R.R. Turnbull, the Everton director, who died on Thursday. Tommy Lawton will be on leave next week-end, and will help for Millwall against Brighton and Hove –if permission is granted by Everton. Liverpool; Hobson, goal; Harley and Gulliver, backs; Kaye, Hughes and Pillings, half-backs; Campbell, Nieuwenhuys, Taylor, Welsh (Charlton) and Cunmer, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Grant, Lindley, and Watson, half-backs; Boyes, Bentham, Lawton (captain), Stevenson and McIntosh (Preston), forwards. Referee; Mr. P. Snape (Swindon). Liverpool were the first away, Campbell moving inwards but finding the pace of the ball too much for him. Once again Welsh and Campbell tried to get through by close collaboration, but Jackson and Lindley were there to bar their path. Then Everton came into the limelight, Lawton giving the Lord Mayor of Liverpool (Lord Sefton), and the Naval, Miltary and Air Force chiefs, who were among the spectators, a thrill with a flying header over Hughes, but Hobson was on the spot to clear. There was a certain nervous tension about both teams, which produced some hurried passes instead of the more deliberate use of the ball, which would have taken toll of defences on edge. McIntosh raced through, but his centre was too high for Lawton, and after two promising thrusts by Welsh, the ball bounced over Hughes and Lawton was able to race ahead. Lawton shot just as he was tackled by Gulliver, and the ball flashed outside. Burnett ran out to intercept before Welsh could get in a shot, and then he neatly caught an awkward dropping centre from Cumner, Welsh and Taylor participated in their customary quick switch, and Liverpool piled on the pressure.
Cumner curled in another fine centre which Burnett fisted away with one hand. Still Liverpool kept it up until Greenhalgh stepped in with a lusty clearance. Liverpool took the lead in 15 minutes, and it was not underserved although it might have been saved. Taylor and Welsh moved the ball swiftly across the line of attack, and it went to Cumner who darted in towards goal, Cumner tried a half centre and the ball dropped just under the bar and into the net, Burnett jumping too late. Everton should have been on terms within a minute for McIntosh swept by Harley, but from close-range drove well beyond the far post. When McIntosh tried to feed Lawton along the floor, Hughes was there with a timely intervention. Liverpool were the more dangerous side, and when Nieuwenhuys robbed Stevenson, Welsh was able to run on and hit a fierce shot with his left foot, which Burnett managed to turn out with his foot. The attack was sustained, Taylor letting go a grand shot which flashed inches over. When McIntosh levelled a surprise centre, Lawton found himself surrounded by three players, but he tried to leap between them only to receive a mouth injury and had to receive attention. Lawton deceived Hughes by bringing the ball to his left foot quickly and shooting from the edge of the penalty area, but Hobson dived across to save.
Liverpool had the chance to be two up in half an hour, but Welsh missed a penalty. Lindley menaced by Welsh, tried to pass the ball back to Burnett, but only half hit the ball, and Welsh was racing on when he was brought down by Lindley. Welsh bit the penalty kick hard enough, but the ball struck the foot of the post and bounced clear. It was the first time I had ever seen Welsh fail with a penalty. Liverpool definitely were calling the tune, their forwards being much more cohesive and dangerous than Everton’s. Burnett had to be quick to take command when Welsh loomed dangerous and then Cumner ran in to a centre from Nieuwenhuys, but his header hit the ground and bounced over the top. Lawton missed a golden chance when Bentham put him through, but he shot too quickly when he had all the time in the world, and the ball flashed outside. Lawton, Stevenson and McIntosh got Liverpool running the wrong way, and Stevenson went through to shoot low but Hobson went full length to turn the ball out. The ball went straight to the in running Boyes, who, however, hooked the ball high and wide. The Everton forwards found great difficulty in shaking off Liverpool’s terrier like half-backs, and progress making was difficult. No so the Reds, who moved with refreshing freedom, and Burnett had to make a daring dive to prevent a Welsh centre reaching Taylor.
Half-time; Liverpool 1, Everton 0
Everton opened on a much brighter note, Lawton racing through, but Harley dashed across with a winning tackle, and when next Lawton was moving his first time shot was turned over the top for a corner. A flying centre by Nieuwenhuys was turned aside cleverly by Burnett, with Cumner dashing in. Interference with play by Welsh who was offside, deprived Campbell of a goal, and then Burnett had to dive out to prevent Cumner from turning the ball through as he raced past Lindley. It was still Liverpool on top, for they found their men so much more readily, but the game at times looked easy to them. By the time the Reds should have been father ahead, and for a space of four minutes it was only desperate defence on Everton’s part which kept them at bay.
It was the enterprise of Grant and the deadiness of Tommy Lawton’s head which brought the equaliser in 67 minutes. Boyes took a quick throw-in and the ball came back to Grant, who moved forward and centred bang in front of the post, where Lawton leaped over three players to score a magnificent goal. Even the most ardent Evertonian would agree that Everton were fortunate to be on terms, for they had been struggling from the first whistle but there was no doubting the excellence of the scoring point. Liverpool regained the lead in 70 minutes through Nieuwenhuys from a corner. Cumner placed the ball on to the penalty spot and Nieuwenhuys raced in at top speed to leap above a bunch of players and head into the net. Burnett made a safe catch off a surprise shot by Pilling as Liverpool settled down again to their good football, in a game played at a cracker pace and never wanting for excitement. Liverpool seemed to have made sure of the game in 81 minutes when Cumner increased their lead. The Everton defence was caught on one let again, and Nieuwenhuy’s speed to the ball left them unpositioned, so that although the ball ran beyond Nieuwenhuys, it was ready made for the in-running Cumner to drive into the net from close range. Well, it was no more than Liverpool deserved. Burnett made another good save, this time from Nieuwenhuys, but there was little of no shooting from Everton, apart from a commendable drive by Watson off a free kick, which Hobson pulled down from under the bar. Welsh got in the way of a scoring shot from Nieuwenhuys before Taylor struck the post as Liverpool still kept on top.
Final; Liverpool 3, Everton 1.
Everton Res. V. L’Pool Res
Within a minute Shannon tested the Everton keeper with a fine shot, and at the other end Gildea saved well from Booth. After 35 minutes Liverpool went ahead, Brown giving Leigh no chance. Half-time; Everton Res 0, Liverpool Res, 1.
LIVERPOOL IN FINE FORM
February 10, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Everton Beaten In Anfield Derby
Liverpool; Hobson, goal; Harley and Gulliver, backs; Kaye, Hughes and Pillings, half-backs; Campbell, Nieuwenhuys, Taylor, Welsh (Charlton) and Cunmer, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Grant, Lindley, and Watson, half-backs; Boyes, Bentham, Lawton (captain), Stevenson and McIntosh (Preston), forwards. Referee; Mr. P. Snape (Swindon). There was an excellent attendance for this return Derby meeting at Anfield and among those present was the Lord Mayor of Liverpool (Lord Sefton). Lawton will be in the South next week, and will help Millwall. As a token of respect to the late Mr. R. Turnbull, the two teams, and the Crowd stood in silence for a short while. In this game Liverpool’s opposition was of a much more toughish nature. There was plenty of end-to-end play, and when Lawton burst through the England leader got the ball in one of his favourite positions and let go one of his old fashioned drives, but there was one thing wrong with it –direction. The ball travelled wide.
There was plenty of fire in the game, and at 15 minutes Liverpool scored the day’s first goal. It started with a faulty clearance Taylor collecting the ball quickly and putting it out to Cumner, who from just outside the penalty side line, shot into the net. Liverpool were very dangerous when they got anywhere near goal. Welsh found a way though, and had very hard lines in not opening his account. He shot with power and direction, but Burnett stuck his foot out and turned the ball aside-a lucky sort of save in a way, yes it was the only thing Burnett could do, and he did it well.
Lawton had not many chances because he was so well watched by two and sometimes three Liverpool defenders. Then again he was so often up on his own without support. Lawton got a facial injury, and for a few moments walked around with a pad between his teeth, but he quickly resumed and the battle went on. Campbell so far had an excellent innings, and when he burst through to the centre and offered Welsh a chance, Welsh found his shot rattled away against Lindley’s legs. To the dismay of everyone, Welsh shot against the upright with his penalty kick.
A surprise left-foot shot by Lawton forced Hobson to make a flying save at the angle of the woodwork, and almost immediately afterwards came a penalty against Everton. Welsh had beaten Lindley, and as he flashed by him the Everton half back pulled Welsh down from behind, and there was no other award but a spot kick. Lindley will no doubt consider it was worth it to give away a penalty, for had Welsh been allowed to go on he must have scored. Liverpool were undoubtedly the superior side. Everton’s half backs were not so good as usual, and with all the Liverpool man right on their toes, nipping in at the crucial point, they had more of the ball and made better use of it.
Half-time; Liverpool 1, Everton 0.
Lawton’s task all through had been difficult, because he was shadowed like a long-lost brother. Nieuwenhuys tried one of his specials, a long one, and Burnett only just managed to turn it out.
When Liverpool were taking a goal kick, Lawton did what only one man could do –beat two defenders, and shoot practically at the same time, the ball going over the bar. The Everton defence has not had such a gruelling for quite a time. How they escaped further goals was amazing, for Liverpool were incisive when near goal. When Liverpool moved forward it was a five-point attack. That was one of the big difference in the game-the Everton half-backs were not a strong link today.
At 67 minutes Everton obtained the equaliser. I hardly need say it was Lawton who scored it. Following a throw-in Grant swept the ball into the Liverpool goalmouth and Lawton’s header beat the Liverpool goalkeeper. Within a space of three minutes Liverpool regained the lead. They gained a corner award and Nieuwenhuys seemed by dive over everyone to head the ball into the net. Stevenson and Nieuwenhuys got at cross purposes and the referee spoke to both. At eight-one minutes Liverpool brought the score to 3-1. Cumner scoring following efforts by Welsh and Nieuwenhuys. Cumner’s shot left Burnett helpless. Final; Liverpool 3, Everton 1.
ANFIELD TEAM REVIVAL
February 12, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
Liverpool 3, Everton 1
Great Half-Backs and Fine Forwards.
Liverpool completely turned the tables on Everton in the return Derby game at Anfield, winning 3-1. They almost won by the same total by which Everton prevailed the previous week, and would have done had they not failed with a penalty. Liverpool were by far the better team, being on the attack practically throughout. The return of such players as Welsh, Nieuwenhuys, and Cumner, which brought the necessary skill and power into the Liverpool attack all of which were missing a week ago, contributed largely to the reversal of form. It was more like an Anfield attack. A week previously they had as catch forward line which was incapable of breaking down the Everton defence. The boot was definitely on the other foot at Anfield, for it was Everton who never looked like winning their half-backs and backs being overrun by a fast skilful and elusive Liverpool; a Liverpool which got its teeth into the game from the start and never released its hold.
The Everton forwards were mastered by superlative half-backs who not only smashed up attacks but gave their own forwards the necessary assistance. The Liverpool forwards felt they could leave defence to Kaye, Hughes and Pillings with safely. Thus they could indulge themselves in an orgy of swift, forward movements. They propelled the ball along at a terrific pace, passed it with such accuracy that the Everton defence was often nonplussed so much so that good luck more than good magnificent prevented further Liverpool goals. Welsh and his colleagues were in no mood to be held off by the Everton defence, and they but on such pressure that Lindley and his colleagues were more often than not battened down near their own penalty area. The Everton captain soon saw how things were going and came down field to have a word with his men, but it made little difference for Liverpool ere in one of their trenchant moods, and they made Everton look a very ordinary side. The secret of Liverpool’s success, in my opinion was the half-backs time; Kaye was at his brightest. This was his best game since he returned after his injury, and Hughes kept a tight hold on Lawton, while Pillings was his usually determined self. When they were beaten, which was rarely, there stood behind them two sound backs. Harley and Gulliver. Too many of Everton’s passed went to an opponent, but this can be explained in a measure by the fact that they were so quickly lacked that they had to make the pass hurriedly. It was a far better Derby game than the one at Goodison for the strength of the opposition was more equal, but never at any point did Liverpool appear likely to lose it. They were in control from start to finish, and with the slightest bit of fortune would have won more handsomely than they did. Everton never at any point hit their form (blame Liverpool for that) for whereas Liverpool attacked with a five-point prong; Everton more often than not had Lawton up on his own trying to battle his way beyond five opponents. This could not be done. If he got the ball he had no one to put it to his partner having to stay back to help to check the irresisble Liverpool forwards. He got a goal had a few shots, and that was as much as one could expect with the support he received.
Liverpool opened the score in fifteen minutes when Cumner scored after good work by Taylor and Welsh by centring the ball wide of Burnett into the net. That was the only goal of the first half, but another should have been scored when Lindley pulled down Welsh with his hands and gave away a penalty. Welsh, however, shot against the upright from the spot. Lawton equalised with a header at fifty-seven minutes but three minutes later Nieuwenhuys rushed in to regain the lead with a header from a corner. Nine minutes from the end Cumner scored a third beating Burnett with a hard shot to the far side of the goal. But Liverpool were convincing victory which in no way flattered them. Attendance 33,235. Liverpool; Hobson, goal; Harley and Gulliver, backs; Kaye, Hughes and Pillings, half-backs; Campbell, Nieuwenhuys, Taylor, Welsh (Charlton) and Cunmer, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Grant, Lindley, and Watson, half-backs; Boyes, Bentham, Lawton (captain), Stevenson and McIntosh (Everton), forwards. Referee; Mr. P. Snape (Swindon).
EVERTON RESERVES 0, LIVERPOOL RESERVES 4
February 12, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
At Goodison Park –Liverpool crossed over with a goal lead scored by brown after 40 minutes, and during the second half added to their score through Barron, Garner, and Shannan.
Lawton the Everton, Army and England centre forward may be a Millwall player for one week. His Army duties will bring him South for a short spell, and he is expected to play for Millwall against Brighton and Hove Albion, next Saturday.
FOUNDATION OF SUCCESS
February 12, 1944, The Liverpool Echo
It’s an old Axton that a strong half back line is a first requirement of a successful side. That was the rock on which Liverpool’s success was built. It’s a long time since I saw Kaye serve up such a great exhibition; Hughes also, was brilliant and Pillings was only the merest shade behind them. Add to that the forcefulness and combination of Liverpool’s speedy five-point attack, and you have the main reasons for Everton’s failure. The difference between the two teams, was that between a modern stream-lined, Rolls-Royce and an ancient “fivver”. The first gets into top gear quickly and more sweetly and purposefully all the time; the “fivver” goes in fits and starts, and conks out at the most awkward moments. To pursue the motoring analogy Everton’s attack reminded me of a second-hand car which had been titivated up. It had a shinning Lawtonian radiator and an old, but usually reliable Stevensonian gearbox, but the plug in the right hand cylinder was rusty and refused to spark, the engine had not been timed and turned, and some of the valves were gummed up. Boyes was out of touch with the realities of the day; Stevenson was below bar, McIntosh found Harley recovering well from a shaky start, and Lawton was left to play a lone hand against impossible odds. He found Hughes as big a barrier to progress down the middle as he has met for a long time. Even on the very rare occasions that Lawton outwitted him Liverpool’s backs covered up so well that he never once had a clear passage. It was a thankless task. Liverpool were well worth their victory and to their board and supporters I don’t doubt that one of the most pleasing features of it was the evidence it gave of the return of that grand team spirit which has served them so well in war-time football but which latterly had not been quite so evident. Though the game could not be rated as one of the most classic of exhibitions, it was full of thrills and excitement and provided tip-top entertainment for 33,265 spectators.
THE REAL REDS
January 12, 1945. The Evening Express
The day’s biggest attendance -33,238 saw the real Reds on Saturday, when Liverpool easily defeated Everton -1, at Anfield. The score hardly does justice to Liverpool. It was not that Everton were such an indifferent side, but that Liverpool were a high-powered, effective and skilled football combination, so different from their worried side, at Goodison, the previous week. After the first 10 minutes Liverpool took a firm grip on the proceedings and only for five vital minutes in the second half; did they falter. For the remainder they adopted a dictatorial role so far as the game’s destinies were concerned, moulding the play to their own liking, and doing it with a speed, and accuracy which could not be denied. Even when Liverpool were not actually attacking they gave the impression of being on top of the particular situation. I know they were encouraged by the fact that Lawton, shot wide from two early-on openings which would have brought goals 99 times out of a 100 but they did have the ability to seize on their opportunities and almost say to Lawton “You’ve had it chum.” It was Lawton, however, who gave the Blues a gleam of hope in the second half when he equalised Cumner’s opening goal with a peach of a header off Grant’s centre. Believe me that goal caused the Liverpool machine to miss on a couple of cylinders for a minute or two, for it was so disheartening for them. Liverpool should have had it all tied up and sealed by then. However, they recovered their poise and Nieuwenhuys swung the game around with a grand header from Cunmer’s corner –a goal which he had actually demonstrated to me in the morning. Berry hung well back from the bunch of players in the goalmouth, and as the ball swung in, dashed in at top pace to do the “man of the flying trappers” act and head it home. The goal in itself beat Everton, but Cumner made doubly sure, so that Don Welsh’s surprise penalty miss in the first half was not costly after all. The game itself had more “bite” than any of the previous five meeting. We had thrills in plenty and with Liverpool much more successful in the exploitation of football’s arts and crafts –at high speed.
Keep Them Guessing
The object of Nieuwenhuys, Taylor and Welsh, the Reds inside forwards, was obviously to keep the Everton defence guessing by the repeated interchange of positions and movement to the unexpected spot –and the investment paid off handsomely. Lindley found himself too-often drawn out of positions, and with Greenhalgh paving rather too much attention to Nieuwenhuys early on –Norman settled to a fine second half –there was a lack of co-ordination in the Blues defence although Grant tried manfully. But for the ever reliable George Jackson and some fine goalkeeping by Burnett, the Reds would have scored more often. Jackson, I thought was not only the best back on the field, but without superior for his display was faultless. Yes, and on a worrying day for Everton’s defence. Liverpool’s attack, with rapier-like raiders in Campbell and Cumner on the wing and the industrious Taylor so thoughtful, thrived on plenty of sound support from Kaye, Hughes and Pillings, three half-backs who so upset the Everton forwards that they could devolt plenty of time to providing working material. Kaye was as mobile as a Mercer ad a grand purveyor, and Pillings not, far behind. Hughes concentrated on holding Lawton and Tommy will agree that Laurie did a great job for Lawton did not have a good match partly due to lack of support, while allowing for three hard bumps, one which produced a cut lip. Neither Harley, Hobson nor Gulliver was unduly worried because of the Hughes grip on Lawton, the fact that for once Stevenson could not carve out openings, and Bentham was hardly as effective as usual, and because Boyes was out of his element at outside-right. McIntosh had a good first half, but like Boyes and Stevenson missed a “sitter”. Yes a complete Liverpool victory on an important day when Chairman Mr. Billy McConnell had so many notabilities to entertain. All the Everton folk agreed that the honours and the spoils went to the better side on the day.
February 15, 1945. The Evening Express
I have received news from Stockport, that Harry Catterick, Everton’s young centre-forward, had a narrow escape from serious illness, for septicaemia developed, following a log trouble and was arrested only just in time. Harry is now, I am pleased to say making splendid progress, but whether he will be fit for football remains in doubt.
As Tommy Lawton will be playing for Millwall –Tommy says it is impossible to travel back from the south to play for Everton –Wyles is “first favourite” for the centre-forward position against Southport at Goodison Park. Rawlings will be at outside-right, the remainder of the side being unaltered.
Everton Reserves (v. St. Teresa’s away); J.A. Jones; Melling, McDonnell; Fryer, Rees, Cookson; Hughes, Ashley, Moston, Taylor, Underwood.
Everton Colts (v. Wirral Athletic at Heswall); Gardiner; T. Jones, Rankin; J. Makin, Power, Tansey; Richardson, J. McDonnell, Qualie, T. Dunn, J. Dunn.
SANDGROUNDERS AT GOODISON
February 16, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
On paper, Everton may seem to have a fairly easy task against Southport at Goodison. Yet it may not work out that way. The Sandgrounders, with still a fair chance of qualifying if they can get three points in their next three games, and almost a cast-iron one if they can make it four, are sure to put up a stiff fight, and will have increased confidence as a result of their double over Stockport. All the same I still think Everton capable of winning providing they show anything like their normal form. Their show last week was too poor to expect it not to be improved on. In most of their previous Cup games they have given displays of effective and combined football. Southport have three Evertonians in their side so it is not so much an “away” match as it seems. Birkett, Curwen and Jack Jones have given yeoman service to the “Sandgrounders,” Attack hitherto has been Southport’s weakness. Recently they have found a goal-scoring centre forward in Denis Massam, while the others have also shown improvement. Massam is only 19 years old, and some good Southport judges say they think he will hit top-class when he has had more experience and coaching. He has a big task tomorrow, for Lindley is playing a strong game at centre half. Few centre forwards have a happy day against this Yorksireman. Everton’s team sheet has “Lawton or Wyles” for the middle place. Lawton is in London a short holiday with his wife, who has not been well lately, but Mr. Kelly tells me that he has promised to return for the day if he can manage it. Even without Lawton, Everton should win if the book of words is any guide, yet I have a sneaking feeling Southport may bag a point. Tommy Jones’s ankle is still not right, hence his absence. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Grant, Lindley, Watson; Rawlings, Bentham, Lawton, or Wyles, Stevenson, McIntosh. Southport; Birkett; Curwen, Jones; Thorpe, Chiverton, Hodgson; Simms, Malam, Massam, Coats, Butler.
SPORTS JOURNALIST’S DEATH
February 17, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
Mr. Francis McNeill
The death has taken place suddenly of Mr. Francis McNeill, sports sub-editor of the Daily Post and widely known in sports circles. Mr. McNeill, who was sixty-four years of age and resided at 83 Mill Bank, West derby, had been in newspapers work for close upon fifty-years. On leaving school he entered the services of the Liverpool Courier and Evening Express, on the sports side, and when his training was completed, travelled extensively with the Everton and Liverpool football teams and covered many other engagements in the sphere. Subsequently he became sports editor of the Evening express and came to the Daily Post some twenty years ago. The news of his sudden death, has greatly shocked all who had worked with him on each side of Victoria Street and among whom he was greatly liked for many admirable qualities. He is survived by Mrs. McNeill and two sons, one serving abroad with the Highland Light Infantry and the other engaged in the transport business.
SOUTHPORT AIM FOR GOAL
February 17, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Everton Start Easy at Goodison
Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Grant, Lindley and Watson, half-backs; Rawlings (Millwall), Bentham, Wyles, Stevenson and Sharp, forwards. Southport; Birkett (Everton), goal; Curwen (Everton) and Jones (J.E) (Everton), backs; Thorpe, Chiverton and Hodgson, half-backs; Simms, Malam, Massam, Coats, and Butler, forwards. Referee; Mr. J. Briggs, Cheadle. Everton had Sharpe at outside left for the cup-tie with Southport at Goodison Park. The visitors were the more aggressive in the early stages. They fought with much determination and played nice, combined football, keeping the ball on the ground and showing excellent understanding between the halfs and their forwards. Simms went very close with two headers. Coats tried a strong shot, which spun out of Burnett’s hands for a fruitless corner, and Lindley had to be sprightly to put out centres from either wing. The game was 15 minutes old before Everton struck back with anything like cohesion, and after Bentham had hard lines with a header, Wyles delayed his shot too long when he had a great chance. Rawlings who had put in two clever runs on the touchline went through on his own from near the half-way line gave two defenders the “dummy” and flashed in a fierce drive, which was only a couple of yards off the mark. Jones (J.E.) broke a combined move between Stevenson, who had veered over to the right, and Rawlings and Wyles put an oblique shot across the face of the goal. Southport had a lucky escape when Birkett was well beaten by a Stevenson shot, which was helped on its way by a back-header from Wyles but Curwen was there to kick off the line. Everton took the lead after 33 minutes when Wyles scored with a grand header from Grant’s long-distance centre. When this goal was scored, Southport had only ten men on the field; Hodgson having gone to the touchline for attention a couple of minutes earlier. He resumed immediately Everton had scored, but at outside left, where he was limping badly.
EVERTON’S MASTERY 6-0 SUCCESS
Norman Sharp, the former Liverpool school-boy player, who joined Everton straight from school, played at outside left against Southport in the North Cup Qualifying Competition at Goodison Park today. Sharp was on leave and took the place of McIntosh, who was recalled to play for Preston North End. Southport were in the need of every point to ensure qualifying for the competition proper, and brought to Goodison for the first time Massam their new centre forward from Fleetwood Hesketh. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Grant, Lindley and Watson, half-backs; Rawlings (Millwall), Bentham, Wyles, Stevenson and Sharp, forwards. Southport; Birkett (Everton), goal; Curwen (Everton) and Jones (J.E) (Everton), backs; Thorpe, Chiverton and Hodgson, half-backs; Simms, Malam, Massam, Coats, and Butler, forwards. Referee; Mr. J. Briggs, Cheadle. Southport went straight down to force a corner from which Simms headed in strongly for Burnett to save, and when Southport came again he had another header from Simms, but this time the ball went outside. Stevenson’s back-heel deceived Southport, but Chiverton recovered well, and when Bentham put Rawlings away Hodgson dashed back to clear at the expense of a corner. This was quiet football producing little incident, but with each side concentrating on constructive endeavour. Everton forced two corners in succession, and from the second Stevenson again back-heeled to Wyles, but Birkett, who with Curwen and Jack-Jones was playing against his own club, was there to save. Butler shot from outside the penalty area, and although Burnett saved he could not prevent the ball going around the post for a corner. From this Malam lobbed the ball forward for Simms to head-over the top. Birkett saved Southport when he dived out to fist away a short-range shot from Bentham, before Everton missed a brilliant chance when Wyles did not take a first time shot. By the time he did shoot he was covered.
The biggest thrill so far was a magnificent run by Rawlings, who finished with a splendid right-foot shot which, however, swung just by the far post. Rawlings made his goal way through sheer body swerve and control. After 20 minutes, during which defence were generally on top, Hodgson and Bulter changed places in the Southport side, Hodgson apparently having strained himself. Wyles sprang through with a shot which flashed by the far post, but the defence were covering magnificently. Wyles had bad luck with a back-header which beat Birkett, but which Curwen kicked away off the goal-line. Wyles had been proving a fine spearhead in the Everton attack, and he made a valiant attempt with a header, after Sharp had broken through to place to the goalmouth. Wyles reaped his reward in 33 minutes when he gave Everton the lead. Grant went through at outside right to lob in a magnificent centre, which wyles took on the run to head into the roof of the net. This Grant centre was a replica of his winning effort against Liverpool last week. Rawlings and Bentham got Southport all at sea, and Rawlings ran close in before centring for Wyles to head against the bar. He made another header from the rebound, but found Birkett barring the path to goal. Stevenson had a wonderful chance from Rawlings’ headed pass, but delayed his shot until Birkett was able to rush out and smother the shot. Southport failed to profit from a close-up free kick, and Birkett twice dived out to save after good work by Stevenson and Sharp. Sharp cut inside to make a cork-screw run, which reminded me forcibly of Ray Westwood at his best, and it was unfortunate that his final shot swung outside.
Half-time; Everton 1, Southport 0.
Everton resume convincingly Wyles going close before Stevenson dribbled clean through only to shoot outside with only Birkett to beat. Everton increased their lead in 51 minutes through Stevenson. Grant and Bentham started the movement, Bentham placing wide to Wyles, who had run to the open space at inside left. Wyles noted that Stevenson had switched to inside right, and he pushed the ball back along the floor for Stevenson to drive into the roof of the net with his left foot. A splendid header by Massam found the corner of the Everton net, but the point was disallowed for offside. Then Everton went through to increase their lead at 59 minutes through Rawlings. This was a five point attack, in which Everton by the use of the backward pass to outwit the offside trap, progressed like a star three-quarter line in a rugby game. The ball moved from man to man with amazing accuracy, and eventually it was pushed back to Rawlings, who drove low well out of Birkett’s reach-a magnificent goal. The Everton forwards were playing great football, and they had to thank Lindley for some excellent working material, for the centre-half was not only blotting out the Southport inside forwards but making the utmost use of the ball. Curwen saved another certain goal when he took another shot from Sharp on his chest while standing on the goal-line. Everton were four up in 68 minutes for when Stevenson were going through he was brought down by Chiverton, and Rawlings scored from the penalty. Birkett double-fisted away an excellent surprise shot from Bentham as Everton continued in complete mastery.
Everton made it five in 70 minutes when Wyles crowned some glorious inter-passing by Stevenson and Bentham with a swift cross-shot which Birkett touched but could only turn on to the post, the ball going into the net. Southport raided only spasmodically, for Everton were right on top and emphasising their superiority by excellent footcraft and understanding. Sharp went through again, but his shot was off the target. Ten minutes from the end Hodgson went off. Bentham scored Everton’s sixth goal in 85 minutes with a magnificent shot from 15 yards which gave Birkett no possible chance. Birkett made a great save off Rawlings, and twice Lindley held up Simms. Final; Everton 6, Southport 0.
EVERTON’S EASY WIN
February 19, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 6, Southport 0
Southport’s Bad Luck
Ever since Bobby Jones broke his leg against Liverpool, ill-luck has dogged Southport in nearly all their games against this city’s senior sides. Their visit to Goodison Park on Saturday was no exception, for after half an hour play Hodgson, their left-half and former Tranmere player, pulled a muscle so badly that for all practical proposes Southport thereafter had only ten men. Hodgson being just a passenger at outside left. Up to this, Southport had been as good as Everton. Indeed for the first 20 minutes they were the better side. They played throughout combined football, sent the ball on the ground, were always faster to it than the opposition and looked as though if they could keep it up they might win. During this period Everton seemed content solely to keep Southport from scoring. Their attack was not functioning with either understanding or power, which may be made Southport look better than they really were. But once Everton had taken the lead, which they did after 33 minutes when Wyles scored with a grand header from Grant’s centre, the game underwent a change partly due to the tonic effect of the lead, but mainly because of Southport’s handicap. Hodgson was off the field when this first goal was scored. Had he remained fit, Everton would have had a much sterner fight. Instead the longer the game went the more pronounced was their superiority until finally, when the overworked Southport defence caved in, one almost had visions of another debacle similar to the result at Anfield.
Fine Second Half.
Everton scored five goals in the second half and might have had more had it not been for Birkett’s fine saves and their own occasional slackness. Stevenson got the second from a backward pass by Wyles. Rawlings the third when he finished of a brilliant piece of combination in which all five Everton forwards took part when he followed with one from a penalty after Chiverton had brought down Stevenson; while, finally Wyles and Bentham added one each. Though Sharp was the only home forward not to score, he was one of the day’s outstanding successes, giving a tip-top display at outside left. Birkett could not be blamed for Southport’s defeat, and Curwen put up a fine show at right back until run off his feet in the closing stages. He twice saved certain goals by getting the ball away off the line. Southport’s defence was bewildered by the swift combination and ball control of the Everton forwards while their attack was thrown right out of gear after Hodgson’s injury. Massam did not live up to his reputation and was rarely seen. Everton’s rearguard was sound throughout, with Lindley shining at centre half and Grant and Watson being grand aline in defence and attack, Stevenson was the brains of the attack. Bentham an indefatigable forager. Wyles a lively leader, and Rawlings vied with Sharp for his sparkling wing play. Attendance 10,085. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Grant, Lindley and Watson, half-backs; Rawlings (Millwall), Bentham, Wyles, Stevenson and Sharp, forwards. Southport; Birkett (Everton), goal; Curwen (Everton) and Jones (J.E) (Everton), backs; Thorpe, Chiverton and Hodgson, half-backs; Simms, Malam, Massam, Coats, and Butler, forwards. Referee; Mr. J. Briggs, Cheadle.
• St. Tersa’s 1, Everton Reserves 7
• Liverpool lost 2-1 at Bolton. Campbell for Liverpool and Woodward and Moir, for Bolton
February 19, 1945, The Evening Express
Everton gave 10,058 spectators and Southport an object lesson in how to outwit the offside trap when they thrashed the ‘Port 6-0 at Goodison Park on Saturday. It was one of the finest example of how to beat the scheme perfected by Billy McCracken, it had been my lot to wideness for years. In a few words Everton were backwards to go forward. Stevenson and Bentham in particular, quickly realised early in the second half, when the Blues had only Wyles goal as harvest for a lot of pressure, that the forward pass would be playing into the hands of the Curwen, Jack Jones, off side trap. So they scorned and pushed the ball backwards to an on-running forward. It was precisely the same as a crack Rugby three quarter line in action and what is more they controlled the ball with their feet just as cleverly as “threes” do with their hands. The Third goal in particular –scored by Rawlings –was the example perfection of just how it would be done. The ball went from outside left, right across the line each player moving the ball backwards until it came to Rawlings at outside right, and he did bang it forward –yes, right into the corner of the net. What a goal. Not a Southport player touched the ball from the moment the movement began. Throughout the second half, as a matter of fact, Everton delighted with the precision of their forward work built up on grand support from behind. Wykes got another goal, Rawlings scored from a penalty and Stevenson and Bentham had goals but the scoring was incidental to the excellence of the approach. Whether of not Everton would have won so convincingly had Southport not lost Hodgson with an injury early is a matter for conjecture. I think the Blues would have prevailed in any case but it would have been a pretty tough job. Believe me, Southport were not far short of Everton up to the time Wyles scored. The Port played delightful football with the ball always on the carpet, and each man eager to fill the open space. So good was the early football from the sides that one forgot the absence of thrills. That goal, coming on top of Hodgson’s injury, put Southport out of their stride, however, and they never recovered. The Everton defence had practically a spectatorial role in the second half, I do not assert that Everton had much to do, but the manner of its doing was the source of satisfaction. Lindley was such a masterful centre-half –in all respects –that we had little chance of assessing the value of Massam, Southport’s new centre forward, for the lad was blotted out of the game. I liked Thorpe the former Tranmere Rovers, and the potentialities of Simms, and Malam, while the all-Everton defence of Curwen, Jones and Birkett could not be faulted. Birkett prevented a much bigger “against” tally, and Curwen demonstrated what tremendous advancement he had made of-late. Chiverton opened well, but then found himself “booby-trapped” by the feet-footed quick-thinking, surprise packet Wyles. Wyles did a lot to open the victory way by his facility for moving away to the wings, drawing Chiverton with him and so Leaving Stevenson and Bentham with welcome baths down the middle. Everton’s inside forwards were excelled, while there was fine services from Rawlings and Sharp on the wings and much good working material forthcoming from Grant and Watson. It was good to see Norman Sharp again –I fixed him with a job when he left school so that he could join Everton as an amateur –and am convinced that he is a grand player so much like Westwood. Sharp needs to learn to part a little quicker and he will be okay. The facts were not kind to Southport on the pleasant afternoon, for not only had they to contend with team upsets, but with facing Everton in its merriest moods. Everton, by the way do not anticipate much team changes for next week for Lawton will be absent again.
February 19, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Bad luck has dogged Southport in many of their war-time meetings with Liverpool and Everton. It was so again at Goodison on Saturday for once more injury cut up their side and they had virtually only ten men for two-thirds of the game. True, Hodgson stuck it manfully until ten minutes from the end after pulling a muscle at the half-hour, but he would have better off altogether, for he was only aggravating his injury and embarrassing rather than helping his side. Up t the time of Hodgson’s mishap Southport were the better side. They played good football were quicker on the ball, and showed method and determination in all they did. Everton seemed satisfied not to unduly exert themselves so long as they could prevent the visitors from scoring, and it was not until Wyles scored the first goal that they really woke up to the needs of the day after that there was no holding them, and the longer the game went the more pronounced was their superiority. Southport showed a bold front and much courage against odds, but it was asking too much with only ten men, once Everon had got their teeth into the game. In the second half it was mainly one-way traffic, Stevenson, Rawlings (2), Wyles, and Bentham adding further goals. Towards the end Southport defence was run off its feet by the speed and crafty foot-work of the home forwards ably backed by wing halves Grant and Watson, and only some good saves by Birkett kept the score down. Curwen played a fine game, until overwork and the heavy going told its tale in the closing stages; Malam tried hard to pull the disorganised Southport attack together, but Massam was a disappointment. Lindley had him well “taped” throughout. Everton were very sound in defence and sprightly in attack, Sharp, making one of the rare appearances, gave a splendid show at outside-left –pity he is not available more often –and Wyles gave one of his best displays, showing wisdom in the manner he opened out play by excursions to either wing.
February 22, 1945. The Evening Express
Everton make one change for their visit to Southport in their concluding North Cup Qualifying Competition game on Saturday, this being the return to centre half of Tommy Jones in place of Lindley. Jones’s ankle is now strong again. Everton reserves play Kirkby at Goodison Park, and the Colts clash with Wigan Mining Colleague-the best opposition they have met this season at Orrell-lane.
Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Grant, Tommy Jones, Watson; Rawlings, Bentham, Wyles, Stevenson, Sharp
Everton Reserves; J.A. Jones; Painter, Lever; Mellings, Rees, Ashley; Hughes, Taylor, Booth, Whitehead, Peters.
Everton Colts; Melrose; T. Jones, Rankin; Parker, Cookson, Tansey; Lowe, Qualie, Fulton, Kitchingman, G. Hannah.
February 23, 1945. The Evening Express
Everton should complete the “double” over Southport at Haig-Avenue if they can put a grip on a Southport who, obviously, believe in a quick start being half the battle. At Goodison Park a week ago Southport were as progressive and neat as Everton until injury robbed them of Hodgson, and Everton will do well to settle quickly to their work or they may get early shocks. My advice to Southport’s defence is not to rely too much on the offside trap, for Everton showed last week that they have the ability and the plan to upset it. The offside game is useless unless you can force the man in possession to part Southport have lost six out of their 13 home games this season, but Everton have been beaten away only twice. Everton will have Tommy Jones at centre half again, and also Mercer, in the side and I think they should bring home the points. Southport; Birkett; Curwen, Jones (Jack); Thorpe, Chiverton, Hodgson, Simpkins; Dellow, Malam, Urmston, Massam, Coats, Butler. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Grant, Jones (Tommy), Watson; Mercer, Rawlings, Bentham, Wyles, Stevenson, Sharp.
February 23, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Everton away to Southport will be fancied by most folk to complete the “double.” But too much reliance must not be placed on last week’s Goodison victory, for Hodgson’s injury completely disorganised Southport who up to then had been the better side, and this time the Sandgrounders will make a very stern fight, for they must get a point at least to retain any hopes of Cup qualification. Normally one would say that their chances are reduced by the return of Tommy Jones to centre half, yet so well had Lindley been playing that the Welsh international has not been missed as much as one feared. Yet Jones is in a class by himself, and Southport’s a class by himself and Southport’s attack is likely to find him a big stumbling block. Mercer is also available. Everton’s team this apart, is as last week, but Southport will probably have changes in their forward line, and in the half backs if Hodgson is not quite fit. Southport; Birkett; Curwen, Jones (Jack); Thorpe, Chiverton, Hodgson, Simpkins; Dellow, Malam, Urmston, Massam, Coats, Butler. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Grant, Jones (Tommy), Watson; Mercer, Rawlings, Bentham, Wyles, Stevenson, Sharp.
February 24, 1945, The Evening Express
After Losing 3-0 Lead
Everton had Mercer at right half for the return game with Southport at Haig Avenue, this afternoon. Dellow and Urmston, of Bury were in Southport’s Forward line. Southport; Birkett (Everton), goal; Curwen (Everton) and Jones (J.E.) (Everton), backs; Thorpe, Chiverton, and Hilliard, half-backs; Dellow (Tranmere), Malam, Urmston (Bury), Coats and Butler, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Mercer, Jones (T.G.) and Watson, half-backs; Rawlings (Millwall), Bentham, Wyles, Stevenson and Sharp (N.W), forwards. Referee; Mr. R. Yeomans (Hanley). Everton made a lightning start. After Mercer had dispossessed Butler the Blues swept down on the right. The ball was crossed to the left where Hilliard handled and a penalty was awarded from which Mercer scored in the first minute. The visitors again got down by the right wing and Stevenson missed an excellent chance, but he recovered to find the net with the game three minutes old. Burnett was in action in saving from Urmston but the game was only six minutes old when Wyles gathered a ball from the right to beat Birkett with a lovely shot. After eight minutes Southport reduced the arrears. A bright run by Dellow led to this player presenting Urmston with an easy heading chance, which the Southport leader took. The game continued on fast lines, with both goals having narrow escapes but the defenders on the whole were rather too smart for the attackers. When Dellow was brought down near the penalty area, Everton’s goal was in peril, until a high spring by Burnett enabled the goalkeeper to catch the ball and throw it clear. Dellow was troublesome to the Everton defence, and when he broke through, Burnett brought off a smart save by pushing the ball over the bar. From Dellow’s corner kick Burnett again cleared. A free kick helped Everton to raise another attack, but Stevenson sent wide from Mercer’s pass. A second goal came to Southport with the game 24 minutes old when an Everton defender handled in the penalty area and Butler scored from the spot. The teams fought hard, and Rawlings, who had cut in to goal came into collision with Chiverton, and both players were hurt. Rawlings soon recovered, but Chiverton had to leave the field; and Southport reorganised their defence. Despite this handicap, Southport gave Everton many anxious moments, but Burnett was successful in disposing of a hard shot from Urmston. The Everton attack had inspired period’s but Birkett was equally efficient in meeting shots from Stevenson and Wyles.
Half-time; Southport 2, Everton 3
Everton had a goal disallowed when Sharp went through from Wyle’s pass. The decision was disputed but the referee remained firm. Chiverton resumed for Southport but on the left wing. Both attacks were lively without being deadly, and it was not until 59 minutes that Southport scored an equaliser. The ball was worked by the left wing for Urmston to receive a pass and drive the ball well out of the reach of Burnett. Everton made determined moves on the Southport goal, but Rawlings shot a foot wide. The game continued along exciting lines, and both sides struggling in an effect to take the lead. Burnett did well to stop a scoring shots from Urmston and Chiverton. Bentham and Wyles added goals for Everton; Final; Southport 3, Everton 5.
GRAND EFFORT BY SOUTHPORT
February 24, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Wiped Out Three Goal Deficit
Southport; Birkett (Everton), goal; Curwen (Everton) and Jones (J.E.) (Everton), backs; Thorpe, Chiverton, and Hilliard, half-backs; Dellow (Tranmere), Malam, Urmston (Bury), Coats and Butler, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Mercer, Jones (T.G.) and Watson, half-backs; Rawlings (Millwall), Bentham, Wyles, Stevenson and Sharp (N.W), forwards. Referee; Mr. R. Yeomans (Hanley). With a whirlwind start of three goals in the first five minutes, Everton made Southport hopes of Cup qualification look very thin. Mercer got the first goal in one minute from a penalty after Thorpe had handled, Stevenson got the second a minute later when a partial save by Birkett enabled him to take a second shot; and Wyles got the third –after five minutes-with a brilliant left foot shot from a centre by Norman Sharp. This was a severe blow to the home side, but they fought back doggedly, and Urmston reduced the lead after eight minutes. Southport exerted heavy pressure for the next ten minutes or so, and only fine wok by Jones (T.G) plus a smart save by Burnett from Dellow, prevented Southport reducing the deficit still further. Southport came back into the game with a sporting chance when Butler still further reduced the deficit from a penalty after hands by Mercer –time 24 minutes. At the half hour Chiverton was injured in a melee in front of the home goal and had to leave the field, limping badly. Four minutes later Dellow was also in the wars, and with Southport’s trainer Billy Sample attending to Chiverton, Dellow was looked after by Harry Cook of Everton. Dellow resumed after Cook’s administrations, but was obviously far from right. Hilliard who had gone centre half twice robbed Wyles in the nick of time following which the Everton leader, when he had only Birkett to bat, shot well off the mark.
Half-time; Southport 2, Everton 3
Sharp netted in the first minute of the second half, only to have the point disallowed for a rather doubtful offside decision. Chiverton resumed, but at outside left. Offside twice pulled up Everton, and then Southport’s persistence was rewarded when Urmston equalised after 56 minutes. Southport almost took the lead when Burnett failed to hold a shot from Chiverton, but an offence by Urmston brought relief. This was a splendid recovery by Southport and something better seemed in the offing until Jones (T.G.) saved the visitors when Urmston looked all over a scorer. Stevenson and Bentham aided by a couple of fine runs by Sharp, and some good attacking work by Mercer, tried to get the visitors attack working with its customary smoothness, but time and again Everton’s front line fell into the Southport off-side trap. Their nearest approach to a goal was a shot by Stevenson which Birkett saved at the foot of the post. Stevenson and Malam had words following a foul by the latter. From the free kick, taken by Watson, Everton took the lead when Bentham headed in from pass by Wyles. Time 78 minutes. Wyles scored for Everton -81 minutes.
Final - Southport 3, Everton 5.
February 26, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
Southport 3, Everton 5
Southport Have Bad Luck
Ill luck befell Southport once again in their home game against Everton won 5-3 by the latter. Not only did the Sandgrounders suffer injuries to Chiverton and Dellow, but they had to overcome the demoralising effect of three Everton goals in the first five minutes, scored by Mercer (penalty), Stevenson, and Wyles –the latter’s goal being the best I have seen him score. This was enough to take the heart out of any side but Southport took it on the chin and fought back in such grim and gallant manner that before the half-hour were back to a single goal margin thanks to goals by Urmston and Butler (penalty). Thus a match which had threatened to peter out into a foregone conclusion was again fraught with possibilities and the effect was seen in Everton’s defence which hitherto cool and confident became for a short period hesitant and shaky. Then came Southport’s chief misfortune, Chiverton received a leg injury after thirty minutes and left the field for the rest of the first half and a few minutes later Dellow was similarly hurt. Dellow did not go off, but he limped badly for the rest of the game, and post all his earlier effectiveness. Chiverton resumed after the interval at outside left and the weakness on either wing was undoubtedly a big handicap. Yet despite this Southport continued to hit back with skill and spirit and deserved the equalising goal which Urmston got at the 56th minute. Even with a full team of its players this would have been a worthy performance against a side of Everton’s calibre. With two men practically passengers it was a remarkable recovery.
Helped Their Own Downfall
Unfortunately for Southport they contributed to their own downfall, when Malam needlessly conceded a free kick for a foul on Stevenson for this led directly to Bentham restoring Everton’s lead a brilliant header from a sideways flick by Wyles off Watson’s free kick. From this point onwards Everton got an increasingly strong grip on the game, and when Bentham made a fifth and first goal for Wyles the home teams last lingering hopes were extinguished. It was a thrilling and entertaining game all through. Both sides played skilful and attractive football but Southport failed in one essential at the most critical time –they did not produce the shots which their approach work warranted. Everton on the other hand, were always ready to try their luck. Attendance 4,560. Southport; Birkett (Everton), goal; Curwen (Everton) and Jones (J.E.) (Everton), backs; Thorpe, Chiverton, and Hilliard, half-backs; Dellow (Tranmere), Malam, Urmston (Bury), Coats and Butler, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Mercer, Jones (T.G.) and Watson, half-backs; Rawlings (Millwall), Bentham, Wyles, Stevenson and Sharp (N.W), forwards. Referee; Mr. R. Yeomans (Hanley).
• Liverpool draw 1-1 with Bolton. Campbell for Liverpool, and Barrass for Bolton.
EVERTON RESERVES 5 KIRKBY 0
February 26, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
Notwithstanding their five clear goals victory, Everton did not have matters their own way, for Kirkby put up a stiff resistance throughout, but finished weakly in front of goal. Taylor (2), Booth, Peters, and Hughes scored for Everton.
EVERTON GET “DOUBLE”
February 26, 1945. The Evening Express
Everton completed their equallying series by winning 5-3 at Southport, but only after the shock of losing a three-goal lead. It means that the Blues finished the competition with 16 points only Liverpool and Tranmere Rovers defeating hem. The feature of the success at Haig Avenue was the Third goal –a wonder shot by Cecil Wyles –and which gave the Blues a three goal lead in six minutes, writes my observer at the game. “It was one of the best goals I have ever seen for Wyles trapped the ball with his right foot, and in one movement swung around and hit it like a rocket with his left. During those opening passages Everton played excellent football in effortless style and their defence was not even bothered until Urmston reduced the lead in eight minutes. The establishment of that early lead was responsible for Everton easing up, and the go-ahead Southport were quick to seize their chances. Southport not only came into the game but got another goal before the interval and then a penalty gave them an equaliser. By that time Southport were playing really well and full of confidence, but then Everton turned on the beat, again and quickly proved themselves as the master side. Despite their tendency to slacken Everton gave a delightful display and the scoring of goals by Wyles (2), Mercer, Stevenson and Bentham was incidental to the good approach. Southport were handicapped for a spell in the first half because of an injury to Chiverton and had grand servants in Thorpe, Hilliard, Jack Jones, Urmston, and Curwen. Jack Jones had a fine day and so did Tommy Jones, on his return to Everton. He made everything look on easy and hardly put a foot wrong. Wyles and Sharp were the best of the forwards with Stevenson and Bentham doing a lot of good building-up, and Mercer and Watson were excellent wing halves, working in complete harmony with Jackson and Greenhalgh.
February 27, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
It is rather a reflection on the Southport sporting public that they could not reach 5,000 for Everton’s visit. No wonder the Southport board has never been particularly anxious to get into the Second Division. It might be an embarrassment rather than a pleasure. Southport had other embarrassments on Saturday notably Everton’s whirlwind start of three goals in five minutes, and injuries to Chiverton and Dellow. “Come on the ten men,” is becoming Southport’s weekly war cry. True, Chiverton came back after fifteen minutes’ absence and Dellow did not go off at all, but both were little more than passengers in the second half, when the lack of thrust on the wings was a big handicap to Southport. Under the circumstances it was a fine performance to pull back Everton’s three goal lead. Such blows would have demoralised most sides but Southport fought back in a way which compelled admiration. Had they remained at full strength they might have won, for Everton at one period got jittery in defence and lost their rhythm in attack. The turning point of the game was when Malam fouled Stevenson fifteen minutes from the finish for the free kick led to a restoration of Everton’s lead. Up to this Southport were always in the game with a sporting chance. Thereafter the fight went out of them, and Everton were well on top in the closing stages. Sandgrounders who have seen all the games at Haig Avenue this season tell me this was the pick of the lot. Certainty it provided some tip-top football. Both sides kept the ball on the ground made progress by skilful and combined play and showed solidity and adaptability in defence. Everton were the more dangerous in front of goal. They shot on every possible occasion, whereas Southport wasted chances through working the ball too much. Bets goal of the day was Everton’s third scored by Wyles after Mercer (penalty) and Stevenson had shocked the home side with two goals in two minutes. Wyles hit an awkward ball first time in true Lawtonian fashion with his left foot, and Birkett never saw it. Bentham got the fourth and Wyles the fifth nine minutes from the end. Southport’s were scored by Urmston (two) and Butler (penalty). Both the penalties were for hands. Urmston a grand leader of the home attack gave Tommy Jones plenty to think about Thorpe was a terrier for work. Hilliard a capable deputy at centre half and the backs and Birkett could not be faulted. Everton have taken due note of the big improvement in Curwen. The visitors were well served all round in defence, and in attack Stevenson and Bentham were outstanding. Sharp again played well.
EVERTON’S BID FOR HOLLY PARK
February 27, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
South Liverpool F.C., shareholders meet at the Masonic Hall, Garston on Saturday next (3.30 p.m.) to come to the decision on Everton’s offer to their directors. I can now reveal what I have known for some time, but which I was not at liberty to state before –namely that the proposal is that Everton should purchase all the South Liverpool assets and that South Liverpool should in future become tenants of Everton at Holly Park.