September 2, 1940. The Liverpool Daily Post
Manchester City 0, Everton 0
Sagar’s Fine Saves.
Goalless games are sometimes drab affairs, but the meeting of Manchester City and Everton could not be placed in that category. The City were perhaps the more dangerous side in the first half, and Sagar showed that he retains his brilliant form by making saves of high class quality. One save of his, a close range shot by Currier, bordered on the sensational. It was he who stood between the City forwards and a number of goals. By comparison Everton’s attack was not so progressive, the two youthful wing forwards were, I think slightly overwhelmed by the occasion but they linked up in some nice football efforts but the shooting was not good. Lawton had two efforts, one his head, one with foot, which tested Swift, and it was not until the second half that they really came out of their shell and twice they hit the upright with the City goalkeeper well and truly beaten. It was not a day for heated football, but the second half was undoubtedly a much more thrilling affair than its predecessor and had Everton just sneakened the points they would not have been flattered, although the Manchester folk might claim that they, too should have had a goal or two, particularly when Doherty hit a strong shot which Sagar elbowed out. Currier too, should consider he was unlucky when a ball hit the inside of the upright and Sagar swept it off the goalline. This outing should have done all the players a deal of good, but it was pretty obvious that their lack of training kept them from stressing and straining. Teams:- Manchester City: - Swift, goal; Sproston and Clark, backs; Walsh, Fagan and Bray, half-backs; Emptage, Herd, Currier, Doherty, and Pritchard, forwards. Everton: - Sagar, goal; Cook (captain), and Greenhalgh, backs; Mercer, Jones and Watson, half-backs; Sumner, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson and Penlington, forwards. Referee Mr. H. Hartley (Bolton).
EVERTON AT MANCHESTER
September 2, 1940. The Evening Express.
Everton supporters can look forward to some attractive football at Goodison Park if the display against Manchester City at Maine-road on Saturday can be maintained. It was a good test, because the City had out a really strong team. I was well pleased with Everton’s defence against a quick-moving forward line. Sagar, who had much more to do than Swift was masterly, and those saves from the deadly Doherty and Herd was thrills. Tom Jones was as imperturbable as ever, Mercer has lost none of his craft, nor has Greenhalgh, where fearlessness in breaking up attacks was a feature. Everton’s forwards were not quite so quick on the attack as the City men. Everton had two willing youngsters in the outside positions in Penlington and Sumer. Tom Lawton was always a source of trouble to the City defence. One of his shots was the best of the game, and it nearly brought Everton victory a few minutes from time. A goalless draw resulted.
EVERTON’S HALF SHARE
September 2, 1940. The Liverpool Echo
A draw at Manchester City’s ground can be considered quite satisfactory, but I would imagine that Everton people would consider themselves a shade unfortunate not to have taken full marks, for three times they hit the woodwork in this goalless game. Now, to hit the woodwork three times suggest that goalkeeper Swift was beaten three times. Well he was yet he had not nearly so much work to do as Sagar, who touched championship form in the first half when he made starting saves, so perhaps matters were evenly levelled out and a goalless game satisfying to both teams. The City attack was undoubtedly the more dangerous quintet, for the Everton front line’s effect was reduced by the inclusion of two mere boys on the wing and Lawton could not find many opportunities against the City’s “find,” Fagan, at centre half; Fagan by the way comes from Earlestown Bohemians, always considered an Everton preserve. Penlington and Sumner were opposed by international defenders, and were overawed. Nevertheless I liked the play of Penlington. He will come on. There were many spells of good class combination, with the second half more “biting” than the first, which was tame and quiet. It was something akin to a knock-up in tennis –a loosened-up when the rival players were testing their wind and limbs after their long lay-off from football, and training. There was no stressing and straining but one could not help but pick out such as Doherty. Tommy Jones a youngster named Walsh, Sproston, Cook, Mercer, now C.R.M.I (In other words Company Sergeant-Major Instructor) and of course Sagar, for special praise.
EVERTON X1 AT WOOLTON
September 5, 1940. The Evening Express
Everton have arranged another match for Saturday. An “A” team will visit the Boys’ playing Fields at Woolton to meet Cliff Britton’s team. The Everton “A” team will be: Kearns; Ireland, Dugdale; Sharrett, Atkins; Hankin, Cobham, Simmons, Birmingham, Lyons, Bailey.
Liverpool Combination’s Strength.
Judging by the class of clubs which have entered the Liverpool Combination this season will be as strong as any non-League competition in the country. Everton Reserves, Liverpool Reserves, Marine, and Earle have joined in addition to some of last season’s clubs, including Skelmersdale United the champions. Other newcomers are an R.A.F team, which may include in their ranks some well-known League players. Fixtures are being arranged and the competition will open on Saturday, September 14. The clubs taking part are Skelmersdale United, Burscough Vics, Rooties Athletic, Marine, Liverpool Reserves, Everton Reserves, Wargraves, Earle, Hindsford and R.A.F. Southport Reserves, Mirands and Orrell are other clubs which may enter the Combination.
September 6, 1940. The Evening Express.
Everton will field the eleven which drew 0-0 at Maine-road. The Blues gave a fine showing against City, and if the form is maintained tomorrow, they should open their winning account. One thing of which we can be certain, is that the game will produce a fast and exhilarating struggle. Everton; Sagar; Cook, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Jones, Watson; Sumner, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, Penlington.
MANCHESTER CITY AT GOODISON.
September 6, 1940. The Liverpool Echo
Doherty Among Probables.
Manchester City open Everton’s home programme tomorrow, with a visit to Goodiosn Park, for which Everton once again hope to turn out nine of their championship side. Last week’s inaugural game at Anfield provided us with some bight and entertaining football to offer for a short while the trials and tribulations of war-time existence. If tomorrow’s dish at Goodison is as well served up we shall not grumble. City so far are not definite about their side. At Maine Road they had the help of several of their regulars, including Swift, Bert Sproston, the wizard like Peter Doherty –now in the R.A.F –Herd, Pritchard, and others, most of whom, they hope will be available again. One definite change is that Mulrooney, of Ipswich Town, who is stationed with his unit near Manchester will displace Emptage at right outside. Fagan, who put up such a good show against Lawton will again figure at centre half, while Currier, the former Bolton Wanderers centre, will lend the forward line. With ground advantage Everton ought to win, but the result these days matters little. The main thing is to provide a little relaxation for these who are free and whose inclinations lean that way. There were over 5,000 folk at Anfield compared with normal times, but the game is doing a useful job of work if it provides a break for so many each week. Everton; Sagar; Cook, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Jones, Watson; Sumner, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, Penlington. Manchester City; (probable); Swift; Sproston, Clarke; Walsh, Fagan, Bray; Mulrooney, Herd, Currier, Doherty, Pritchard.
TO PLAY FOR EVERTON.
Cheshire Observer - Saturday 07 September 1940
A Chester League player, who has Jumped right to the front. Alfred Penllngton, who last season played for Rustproof Athletic for several games, Including the Cayzer Shield final, and who last Saturday was selected to play tor Everton FC against Manchester City, and Is selected for the'return match to-day. Everton have a special fancy for Chester League players, and for several seasons they have had least one on their books from this League.
EARLY THRILLS AT GOODISON
September 7, 1940. The Liverpool Echo.
Bentham’s Bad Miss
Then Lawton Makes Amends.
Everton: - Sagar, goal; Cook (captain) and Greenhalgh, backs; Mercer, Jones and Watson, half-back; Sumner, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson and Penlington, forwards. Manchester City: - Swift, goal; Sproston and Clarke, backs; Walsh, Fagan and Bray, half-backs; Emptage, Herd, Currier, Doherty and Mulrooney (Ipswich Town). The small attendance saw clever football with exciting incidents in the first minutes. City were almost through in the first minute through Mulrooney and Doherty, but Everton then took things into their own hands. Sumner almost took swift by surprise with a shot Swift seemed to misjudge the ball going over his hands and away for a goal kick. A more miraculous escape was when Stevenson broke through to collect a Lawton pass. The Irishman hit the ball true, but the woodwork saved City’s face. Prior to this Lawton and Penlington had shots blocked away. So far the City attack had been well handled by the Everton defence without a handling case. Later Currier beat him when he lobbed the ball over Sagar a head, but the line of direction was faulty. At 35 minutes Lawton scored for Everton. Penlington and Bentham opened the way for Stevenson to shoot but his shot was gathered by Lawton, who drove in a terrific shot which left Swift helpless. Prior to this Bentham had missed a sitter and Swift had saved well from Lawton. So far the City attacks had made few calls on the Everton goalkeeper, so well held had they been by the Everton defenders. At last however, Doherty got a pass to his liking, but he found Sagar ready for any emergency.
LAWTON’S GOAL DECIDES
September 9, 1940. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 1, Manchester City 0
Manchester City Lose At Goodison
Everton and Manchester City had to play 180 minutes before either could score a goal. At Maine Road, a week ago, the game ended without a goal being scored. On Saturday at Goodison Park, Everton obtained the one goal of the two games. They should have had more for there were many mischances, some ill-luck in miss-hitting the ball or striking the woodwork, but a goal victory is as good as a more substantial one. The football generally was of good class. Manchester City are usually known for their high scoring powers, but they are not showing any deadliness in front of the goal these days. Sagar had no more than three or four shots to deal with. They were a simple kind, and until the City realise that shooting must take pride or place over finesse, they will not win many matches. Everton’s victory was only a narrow one because Swift, their goalkeeper was in good form. He made at least three saves when he might readily have been beaten but there was no denying that he was a lucky man when Stevenson cracked a hot drive up to the upright. The Everton defence held the City attack in a vice-line grip. Even the noted Doherty could not do as he wanted, and when he is kept quiet the City attack does not fruction as well. The important goal came at the thirty-fifth minute. Lawton scored it and half-a-dozen Swifts could not have saved it, such was the ferocity of Lawton’s drive. But others had a hand in this goal –Bentham, and Penlington, who offered the chance to Stevenson. The Irishman shot hard but Lawton trapped the ball and with two movements slashed the ball into the net just at the angle of the woodwork. The Everton winger Sumner and Penlington, who have both risen from the “B” team, played with more confidence at the second meeting, particularly the latter who is a fighting footballer despite his tender years. Fagan, the Manchester City “find” who by the way is a Liverpool boy was not quite so successful against Lawton as a week ago. All things taken into account, the game was a pleasant entertainment without the hustle and bustle of peace-time football, but with much more artistry. I am afraid, however, the spectators prefer hustle and bustle. Everton: - Sagar, goal; Cook (captain) and Greenhalgh, backs; Mercer, Jones and Watson, half-back; Sumner, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson and Penlington, forwards. Manchester City: - Swift, goal; Sproston and Clarke, backs; Walsh, Fagan and Bray, half-backs; Emptage, Herd, Currier, Doherty and Mulrooney (Ipswich Town), forwards. Referee Mr. H. Handley (Bolton).
SNAP GOAL DECIDES.
September 9, 1940. The Evening Express.
A snap goal by Lawton Everton’s international leader, gave the Blues the victory. It is a goal which again revealed the opportunism of Everton’s leader, for he stopped a low drive from Stevenson, swung round and stammed the ball into the net almost before Swift could move. The teams were fairly evenly matched, with Everton just the more polished. They showed greater skill in their approach work, and had they finished with equal ability they would have gained a much easier victory. The brains of the attack was Stevenson. A tireless forager, the Irishman, also frequently outwitted the City defence by the adroitness of his dribbling. His one weakness was in finishing and he failed to round off more than one opening which he had carved out for himself, although he had desperately hard luck early in the game when, he drove a shot against the crossbar from close range. Lawton and Bentham too did well in attack, while the Blues possessed a strong intermediate line in Mercer, Jones, and Watson. Mercer showed his best form in the first half when he paved the way for many attacks on the City goal. Throughout, Jones proved too strong for Currier, the City leader, and it was left to Doherty, an elusive forward, and Herd, the visitors’ principal marksman to provide most danger to the Everton goal. Both Cook and Greenhalgh were sound defenders and Sagar was perfectly safe although he was not given overmuch to do. Manchester City were strong in defence where Sproston was outstanding at full back. Bray took the honours in the half- back line, in which Fagan endeavoured with varying success to hold Lawton.
EVERTON’S GOAL WIN.
September 9, 1940. The Liverpool Echo
After 180 minutes play, one goal was scored by the Everton and Manchester City players and it was an Everton man who scored it, so Everton, although they have only three points out of two games have the best average in their section, now that the leadership of their section is gained on goal averages. Lawton’s goal was a crack-a-jack; one which Swift could not save. He had saved many other attempts by his sound keeping, and had been let off on occasions by poor marksmanship. Everton should have won a much more convincing victory on balance of play, for they were the more dangerous attackers, for the City’s forwards rarely broke through the staunch, Everton defence. Doherty of the tricky feet, did his utmost to brush through the opposition and delivered a shot or two, but Sagar’s work was made easy by the splendid cover of his co-defenders. Twice he and Jones went for the same ball together to make things look awkward, but he was never really in danger of defeat. The City could, and did, approach with well-conceived plans, but there their utility ended, for it was shattered on the rock-like defence, of Everton. There should have been a number of scores in the winners front line, but the slighting was bad. I liked the way Penlington stood up to Sproston and beat him at times and Manchester schoolboy Walsh, whereas Fagan had not so good a match against Lawton as on the occasion of the previous meeting.
September 10, 1940. Evening Express.
Everton have made two changes in their team. They concern the wing positions. Cliff Britton will be at outside right in place of Sumners and Bailey, the 17-year-old player, takes the place of Penlington at outside left. Everton; Sagar; Cook, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Jones, Watson; Britton, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, Bailey. The “A” team will begin their Liverpool County Combination programme on Saturday which they entertain Buscough Vics at Goodison Park. Everton “A” Kearns; Ireland, Dugdale; Sharrett, Atkins, Harkins; Sumner, Simmons, Birmingham, Lyon, Penlington.
September 10, 1940. The Liverpool Echo.
Everton make two changes in their side to visit Preston North End on Saturday next, but will still have the same nine members of their champions team. The changes are on the extreme wings, where Cliff Britton comes in at right outside and Gordon Bailey at outside left. Bailey is the “B” team player who made his debut last season in the Liverpool Senior Cup-tie against Tranmere Rovers. He is only 17 years of age. This will be Britton’s first appearance for Everton’s first team since the war started. Curiously enough, his last senior outing with the Blues was also against Preston North End in April, 1939, when Mercer was on international duty. He is not a complete stranger to the outside right position, and can be relied on adequately to pull his weight there. Team- Sagar; Cook, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Jones, Watson; Britton, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, and Bailey.
• Ephraim Dodds, of Blackpool F.C., may play for Liverpool against Blackburn Rovers at Anfield, on Saturday.
JOHN ELLIOTT DEAD
Liverpool Echo - Friday 13 September 1940
Nearly fifty years with EVERTON F.C.
John Elliott, the former Everton F.C. trainer, died suddenly in hospital yesterday. “Jock,' as he was more commonly known, served the Everton club in the capacity of player and trainer for over forty years, and it was only a few seasons ago that he retired on pension. Elliott was a native of Northern Ireland, but spent most of his early life in Scotland. He played many parts as a member of the Everton Club, for apart from his activities as player, then trainer, he acted as scout and later as a groundsman. He joined Everton as a wing forward from the Uddington Club, Scotland, his first game being against Rawthenstall, when he scored the only goal. He occupied many positions on the field during his nine years playing service but was mostly deputy, with McMillan, to the famous Milward-Chadwick wing. Battlefield F.C., team from Glasgow, once visited Everton for a friendly match. Elliott scored two goals for them. John Elliott travelled miles for Everton in the capacity scout, and had the Scot’s uncanny intuition of seeing good player in the raw. He trained the Everton Cup-winning side of 1906 and received a gold watch as a memento of the occasion.
September 13, 1940. The Evening Express.
Both Everton and Preston met with similar success in the first two games of the season drawing the first and winning the second –but whereas Preston scored four goals to three Everton netted once and prevented the opposition scoring. Can Everton preserve their goal record? The Blues have two changes from last week, Britton taking over the outside right berth and Bailey coming in at outside left. Everton; Sagar, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Jones, Watson; Britton, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, Bailey.
FORMER EVERTON TRAINER DEAD
Friday 13 September 1940 Liverpool Evening Express
The death is announced today of Mr. John Elliott, who for more than 40 years rendered excellent service to the Everton Football Club both as player and trainer. A native of Northern Ireland, he joined Everton from Uddington Club, Scotland and played for them for a period of nine years. Later he became Trainer –he had charge of the team which won the F.A Cup in 106 and also acted as Scout for the Goodison Club.
GOAL AVERAGE CURIOSITY
September 13, 1940. The Liverpool Echo
A curiosity of the present system of goal-average reckoning for leadership is that it puts Everton right on top of the North Section through they would have had only three points under the old system, whereas Chester, Burnley, and Hull, who have won both their games to date are well down the table. Everton hold their position because they have not yet forfeited a goal against even through they have only scored one themselves. A 1-0 defeat tomorrow might drop them right to the bottom of the ladder! If Everton retain their position after tomorrow’s visit to Preston North End the match is played at Leyland Motor’s ground, by the way, they will have done well, for on the basis of their showing at Anfield a fortnight ago I set Preston down as likely to be one of the season’s outstanding teams, providing they can keep the same formation, more or less intact. They have everything that goes to make success –a quick-moving and sharp-shooting line, and, now that Gallimore is available, a strong defence, allied to understanding and combination. In all this, however, they are no better off than Everton, who are fortunate to be able to still turn out nine of their championship side. Everton; Sagar, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Jones, Watson; Britton, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, Bailey. Preston North End; Holdcroft; Gallimore, Scott; Finch, Smith, Mandley, Finney, Mclaren; Dougal, Mutch, Jessop.
EVERTON SOON AHEAD
September 14, 1940. The Evening Express.
Stevenson’s Goal Against Preston.
Everton, who opposed Preston North End at Deepdale (Leyland), had changes from the originally selected side. Britton went to right half and Mercer took up the centre position in place of Jones. Wyles came in at inside-right. Preston’s team included seven juniors. Preston N.E:- Holdcroft, goal; Gallimore and Scott, backs; Finch, Smith, and Mansley, half-backs; Finney, McLaren, Dougal, Hough and Jessop, forwards. Everton: - Sagar, goal; Cook (captain) and Greenhalgh, backs; Britton, Mercer, and Watson, half-backs; Wyles, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, and Bailey, forwards. Referee Mr. S. Boardman (Hale). Everton’s first advance ended in Smith intercepting Wyles’ pass and Sagar soon had to clear from Hough. After Greenhalgh had checked a neat passing movement started by Dougal, Everton got going strongly and Stevenson was only just too high with a powerful drive. Wyles brought Holdcroft into action, the Preston goalkeeper clearing when hard pressed. The young North Enders gave the Everton defence plenty of work, Cook being kept particularly busy looking after Hough and Jessop. After eight minutes Stevenson scored for Everton with a shot went into the net off Holdcroft’s finger-tips. Bailey scored for Everton after 26 minutes. Finney tried a long shot, but Sagar had little difficulty in fielding the ball. The positioning and the timing of the tackle by the Everton defence upset the movements of the North End attack which, however, was not easily held when it got on the move. Bailey raided smartly and Lawton only just failed to reach the winger’s well-placed centre.
EVERTON TACKLE PRESTON N.E.
September 14, 1940. The Liverpool Echo
Preston N.E:- Holdcroft, goal; Gallimore and Scott, backs; Finch, Smith, and Mansley, half-backs; Finney, McLaren, Dougal, Hough and Jessop, forwards. Everton: - Sagar, goal; Cook (captain) and Greenhalgh, backs; Britton, Mercer, and Watson, half-backs; Wyles, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, and Bailey, forwards. Referee Mr. S. Boardman (Hale). Everton’s team at Leyland included eight n boys under eighteen. But youths under military age. Everton opened the score in eight minutes, Stevenson taking a Lawton pass to lob the ball over Holdcroft’s head. Stevenson had a similar chance earlier on but lifted the ball over the bar just as Bentham did when he had a grand opportunity. Finney tested Sagar with a nice drive and Bailey gave Holdcroft a hot one to hold. North End’s Juniors performed well against greater experience but there was no craft about them. Even so, the Everton defence had some awkward moment’s because Dougal’s liveliness at centre forward. Preston, while full of endeavour, were not skilled artists, and Everton did much more with less effort. Dougal was ever on the look-out for a possible chance, but found none, whereas Everton were always making openings, even though they did not always accept them. At 28 minutes, Everton took a two goal lead when Bailey scored. Holdcroft actually added the final touch to the shot by turning the ball into his net with his feet. Preston could not put their passes right and Sagar had a comfortable half hour. There was no disputing the fact that the Preston boys are going to make good in the very near future.
Liverpool Daily Post - Saturday 14 September 1940
-September 12, suddenly in Hospital John Elliott (late of Everton F.C). Funeral arrangement later.
September 16, 1940. The Liverpool Daily Post
Preston North End 2, Everton 2
Youthful Preston Side’s Recovery.
Everton’s first half exhibition against Preston North End, at Leyfield, suggested a substantial victory, for their greater experience enabled them to do almost as they liked against the youthful North End side, which included seven boys under eighteen. But they seemed to take things rather too easily, and having established a two goals lead seemed to be riding as through any time would do. Goals by Stevenson and Bailey should have set them on a winning way, but Dougal, in the last minute of the first half, scored a lovely goal and this gave Preston the encouragement needed. In the second half North End showed more fire and scored through Mansley, and heartened by this success they thought pace into their game and it appeared as though youthful enthusiasm would succeed against greater experience. Everton should have gone ahead, through Stevenson and Lawton, both missing chances and by the same token North End had their chances too. One particular save by Sagar from Finney was one of the best I have seen for some time. Naturally, Everton tried hard to bring off a won and Lawton tried a snapshot which Holdcroft scrapped away and that was practically the final fling from an Everton point of view. North End’s youthful side did exceptionally well against a team of talent, and Finney, in particular, showed fine pace and raiding ability while the encouraging tactics of Dougal served his side well. Dougal was undoubtedly Everton’s greatest worry. Preston N.E:- Holdcroft, goal; Gallimore and Scott, backs; Finch, Smith, and Mansley, half-backs; Finney, McLaren, Dougal, Hough and Jessop, forwards. Everton: - Sagar, goal; Cook (captain) and Greenhalgh, backs; Britton, Mercer, and Watson, half-backs; Wyles, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, and Bailey, forwards. Referee Mr. S. Boardman (Hale).
September 16, 1940. The Evening Express.
Everton should never have allowed Preston N.E to get away with a draw. They were running away with the game until they were two goals to the good, but after half an hour they seemed to take things just a bit too easily. Everton’s greater experience, especially in defence frustrated everything North End did until the backs let the nippy young Preston attack get loose, and once these lads got going they needed a lot of stopping. It might be said that the unaccustomed surroundings of the Leyland Sports Ground militated against Everton’s success, especially in shooting. Mercer generally had Dougal in his pocket, it is true, but Lawton was just as well held by Smith although Lawton failed unaccountably when given two glorious chances. When Everton staged their belated rally it was too late.
• Lawton the Everton and England centre-forward, will lead the Tranmere Rovers attack against the Czech Army side at Prenton tonight.
September 17, 1940. Evening Express.
Everton will have a debutant in their team against Chester. He is C.R. Lewis, and he will be at outside left. Lewis had a trial a week or so ago and impressed so well as to warrant a test the senior side. There are other alterations in the side compared with the one that did duty against Preston North End at Leyland. Jones is back at centre-half and Britton is again chosen for the outside-right berth. Everton; Sagar; Cook, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Jones, Watson; Britton, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, Lewis. Everton “A” have an away Liverpool County Combination fixture with Bootle Athletic. Everton “A” Canavan; Lambert, Dugdale; Sharett, Finnis, Hankin; Sumner, Lindeman, Williams, Lyon, Bailey.
EVERTON PROMOTE YOUTHFUL TRIALIST
September 17, 1940. The Liverpool Echo.
Quick promotion for youthful footballers is nothing new in war-time Soccer, which bounds with examples by the score, but few have been so rapid as that provided by Everton’s team sheet for Saturday. For their game against Chester at Goodison park, Everton have included C.R. Lewis at outside left. Yet a week ago the club had neither seen nor heard of him! Lewis, a 17-year-old lad, went along to Goodison last Tuesday and asked if he could have a trial some time. As Mr. Theo Kelly had arranged a private trial match the same evening Lewis was invited to take part. He seized his chance in no uncertain manner. Far and away the best player on the field, he so impressed those who saw him that it was decided to take a chance and give him a stiffer test by including him in the senior side this week-end. Even if war-time crowds are sadly attentiated this is pretty hefty ordeal for a newcomer. But Lewis can take heart from the fact that spectators these days are very sympathically inclined to youngsters on the thresh-hold of the football careers, and he need not let this occasion overwhelm him. Lewis apart, Everton will have practically their championship side out for the fourth game in succession, the only other exception being Cliff Britton, again at outside right. Tommy Jones absent against Preston will be at centre half. Jones missed playing at Preston through being five minutes late for the bus leaving Goodison on Saturday and having no petrol to taken him through on his own; Team:- Sagar; Cook, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Jones, Watson; Britton, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, C.R. Lewis
Everton “A” go to Rootes. Team- Canavan; Lambert, Dugdale; Sharett, Finnis, Hankin; Sumner, Lindeman, Williams, Lyon, Bailey.
CHESTER’S VISIT TO GOODISON
September 18, 1940. The Liverpool Echo
Chester F.C play their third away match in succession on Saturday, when they are due to meet Everton at Goodison Park. Last time the Cestrians were at Goodison they struck the Blues in their
Brightest vein, with Walter Boyes contributing three of the five goals by which the home side won. Despite the scored Chester put up a pluckily display, and his time they hope to do much better or they side has not been cut up so much as it was last season. Manager Brown tells me his lads have been serving up some fine football, so far. The attacks has been considerably strengthened nu the inclusion of Brenmer the clever inside forward who joined Arsenal some two years back from Scotland. He had several outing with Arsenal’s first team just before the war started and, if I remember right, struck the headlines in his debut game with a dramatic winning goal on time. He is one of the few professional Soccer players who were brought up on Rugby, turning to soccer only after his school days were over. Chester will not be able to announce their side definitely for another day, or so, the final selectors being made from the following fourteen. Shott; Brown, Vose; Howarth, Walters, Cole, Coley; McIntosh, Bremner, Yates, Pendergast, Astbury, Tunncliffe.
September 20, 1940. The Evening Express.
Everton have had to make three changes in the side originally chosen to meet Chester, owing to the fact that Cook, Britton, and Mercer are all engaged in the Army’s match against Notts County at Meadow-Lane. Jackson will take Cook’s place. Hankin will be at right back and Simmons at outside right. The Goodison side have recorded a win and two draws in their first three games and should keep their unbeaten certificate tomorrow, although Chester with four “guest” players, will take a lot of beating. Everton; Sagar; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Hankin, Jones, Watson; Simmons, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, C.R. Lewis. Chester; Shott; Hollis, Vose; Howarth; Walters, Cole; Astbury, Bremner, Yates, Pendergast, McIntosh.
THE RIGHT SPIRIT
September 20, 1940. The Liverpool Echo.
One thing he can be sure of tomorrow, and that is that his team mates will gave him every possible assistance. There isn’t a side in the country in which the comradeship and team spirit is so strong as among the Goodison brigade, thanks to Theo Kelly’s grand work and influence, and the “old-stagers” are always ready and willing to give the maximum help to newcomers. “Good Luck, laddie! Originally Everton had nine of their championship side selected for this match, but the Army, having fixed up a match at Nottingham, tomorrow, have called on Cook, Britton, and Mercer, which means that Everton had to rearrange their side. Jackson has been recalled from Liverpool, Hankin, a former “A” team player, gets his first chance in the half-back line, while Simmons has another run at right outside. Everton; Sagar; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Hankin, Jones, Watson; Simmons, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, C.R. Lewis. Chester; Shott; Hollis, Vose; Howarth; Walters, Cole; Astbury, Bremner, Yates, Pendergast, McIntosh.
EARLY SHOCKS FOR EVERTON
September 21, 1940. The Liverpool Echo
Three Goals Down To Chester.
Cestrians’ Fine Form At Goodison
Everton: - Sagar (captain), goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; N. Hankin, Jones, and Watson, half-backs; S. Simmons, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson and C.R. Lewis, forwards. Chester: - Shortt, goal; Hollis and Rae, (Queen Park Rangers), backs; Howarth, Walters, and Cole, half-backs; Astbury, Bremner (Arsenal), Yates, Pendergast and McIntosh, forwards. Chester had to make a late change for their game against Everton, at Goodison Park, Rae (Queen’s Park Rangers), coming in for Vose. After a quiet opening Chester took the lead at the end of six minutes, Astbury being the scorer. The point came through the Everton defence taking matters too easily. Prior to Astbury’s point the home goal had a narrow escape. Greenhalgh headed out an effort by Yates with Sagar well beaten. At the other end Everton’s only attempts so far had been per Lewis the amateur outside left, who put in two long distance drives, one of which went close. Chester were showing some nice work in attack principally from Bremner and Astbury and the way they swung the ball about kept the Everton defence at full pressure for a time. Chester got a second goal at the eleventh minute, once more through slackness in the home defence, Jones allowed himself to be robbed by Yates who set Astbury going. When the winger who had veered into the centre put in his shot, Jackson miskicked and put the ball into his own goal. Everton got the first corner of the game after 15 minutes but it availed them nothing and Chester were away again, but this time Yates hit the side netting. Lawton made the first real Everton effort that was neatly robbed by Rae when about to shot. Chester were playing the more attractive football, the combination between the wing halves and forwards being particularly good. The game was nearly half an hour old before Shott was called upon to show his ability and he safely held a long distance shot by Bentham. Bremner put on a third goal for Chester after Sagar had failed to properly hold a hot shot from Astbury.
Half-Time Everton 1, Chester 3.
CHESTER LEAD EVERTON
September 21, 1940. Evening Express
Three Goals In first Half.
There was an attractive Merseyside duel at Goodison Park today, when Everton played Chester. Chester brought in Rae, of Queen’s Park Rangers, at full back. Everton: - Sagar (captain), goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; N. Hankin, Jones, and Watson, half-backs; S. Simmons, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson and C.R. Lewis, forwards. Chester: - Shortt, goal; Hollis and Rae, (Queen Park Rangers), backs; Howarth, Walters, and Cole, half-backs; Astbury, Bremner (Arsenal), Yates, Pendergast and McIntosh, forwards. Referee Mr. R.K. Warburton (Bolton). Chester made the first attack, Astbury centred in front of the Everton goal, but Tom Jones intercepted to make a good clearance. Jones put Simmons on the attack, but after he had made good progress, Rae made a clearance. Everton returned and Lewis had a chance, but he shot high over the bar. Chester took the lead after six minutes Pendergast forced his way through and sent in a perfect centre. Cole put in a fast shot with Sagar out of position, but Greenhalgh was on the line and headed it out. In a flash Astbury seized on the ball and sent it into the net. The ball struck the inside of the crossbar before bounding in. Everton had a chance after good work by Lewis, who sent in a grand centre but Walters turned it away as Lawton rushed in to take the final shot. It was a narrow escape for Chester.
Two Goal lead
Both teams were playing bright, fast football, and in the Chester attack Bremner was very lively. Chester took a second goal after 11 minutes. There was an element of luck in the goal. Although Astbury had worked well for position, he sent in a shot across the goal which would have gone wide, but unfortunately Jackson, the Everton back, tried to clear and turned the ball into his own goal. The Everton goal had another narrow escape following the clearance of a corner-kick by Simmons. Astbury had a clear run and he centred for Bremner to take a final shot, which struck the side of the Everton net. Lawton made a characteristic attempt to reduce the arrears when he snapped on to a pass from Lewis and dashed between the Chester backs to take the shot. He was intercepted, however, and the ball went just wide of the Chester post. The Chester forwards were playing brilliantly, and there was excellent understanding between them and the men behind. Pendergast, Bremner, and Astbury were particularly troublesome. Bentham took a first time shot, but Shortt gathered it easily. Chester took their third goal after 30 minutes, Astbury shot, but Sagar failed to hold it. Bremner snapped on to it from only a yard or two out and drove it into the net. After 40 minutes Stevenson got a goal for Everton, after good work by Jackson. Lawton received and he pushed the ball forward for Stevenson to head it in. He fell into the back of the net as he followed the ball in.
Half-Time; Everton 1, Chester 3.
EVERTON RALLY AT GOODISON
September 23, 1940. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 4, Chester 3
Chester’s Plucky Display
After being three goals down in the first half hour Everton made a fine recovery in their game against Chester at Goodison Park, eventually winning 4-3. It was a match of two district halves. In the first Chester were quite as much the better side as their interval lead indicated. Their forwards started in and out like Spitfires among the Everton defence, which has not been made to look so erratic for a long time. To some extent Everton contributed to their own first half undoing. They played as though they could win at their leisure, and it was not until Chester were three up that they realised the danger. Meantime McIntosh, Bremner and Astbury, admirably backed up by Howarth, had been making merry at Everton’s expense. For long spells Everton were only out of their own half for occasional spasmodic raids and the game was actually half an hour old before Shortt had to handle his first shot. Astbury scored Chester’s first goal, Bremner got the third, and in between Jackson had the misfortune to put through his own goal. Stevenson reduced the lead just before the interval. After Everton had reorganised their forces for the second half (Bentham going right ha, and Simmons inside right), Hankin outside right, and Simmons inside right, it was Chester’s turn to be on the collar. They strove desperately to hold on to their lead, but three goals to Lawton’s goals was definitely offside. The visitors have every reason to be proud of their performance. Had they concentrated more on attack instead of falling back on the defensive late on they might have saved the day. Bremner was the outstanding forward on the field with McIntosh not far behind, and Howarth in the first half was brilliant at half-back. Walters kept Lawton well in check for 45 minutes, but could not hold him once the Everton leader had started on the goal trek. For Everton, the amateur winger, Lewis showed flashes of clever footwork in the second half, and Hankin was good when he changed over to outside right. Jones, after some early mistakes, settled down to his usual sound game, but the backs were never too happy against Chester’s nippy and clever forward line. Everton: - Sagar (captain), goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; N. Hankin, Jones, and Watson, half-backs; S. Simmons, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson and C.R. Lewis, forwards. Chester: - Shortt, goal; Hollis and Rae, (Queen Park Rangers), backs; Howarth, Walters, and Cole, half-backs; Astbury, Bremner (Arsenal), Yates, Pendergast and McIntosh, forwards.
September 23, 1940. The Evening Express.
It was a grand game at Goodison Park on Saturday, Chester taking first half honours to spur Everton on to greater effort and a 4-3 victory. The mastery of the Chester forwards up to the interval was so evident that an Everton recovery seemed almost impossible. McIntosh, the Preston player, Pendergast, Bremner (Arsenal), and Astbury just revelled in the raids on Sagar, who came through an unenviable time with flying colours. The Everton defence was constantly harassed and threatened by a line which was fast, clever and methodical. Those surprises touches of Bremner and Astbury were a delight to watch. Two goals in arrears at the interval, Everton brought thrills for spectators and spills for Chester. Within 16 minutes from the restart Tom Lawton had got a “hat-trick.” Two of his goals were gained with his characteristic dash plus deadly shooting, Shortt had no chance with either. His third goal was a header, when he helped a dropping shot by Stevenson into the net from an awkward angle. Lawton was the star of the game, and during the second half inspired the forwards. There was more thrust about their methods, and the wizardy of Stevenson and his perfect understanding with Lawton was one of the chief causes of Chester’s defeat. There was little to chosen between the defence, but one could not fail to notice the outstanding artistry of Tom Jones, particularly during the closing stages when Chester sought desperately and cleverly to make a draw. Walters, the Chester centre half, had a good day, and Rae of Queen’s Park Rangers, playing at left full back, gave a good display. Everton’s goals were scored by Stevenson and Lawton (three). Astbury, Jackson (Own goal) and Bremner got goals for Chester.
EVERTON STILL FALLING INTO OLD ERROR
September 23, 1940. The Liverpool Echo.
As Syd Walker would say, we come across some funny things these days. It just shows how vital goals are under football’s present system of reckoning, which is a point Everton will have to bear in mind if they want to finish well up the table. Not that is greatly matters where they or anybody else finish, but if a game’s worth playing it’s worth playing well, and old traditions should be maintained. Against Chester, at Goodison, Everton dawdled and doddled through the first half-hour as though they had nothing to beat, and only woke up to the peril of their position after Chester had deservedly taken a three-goal lead through Astbury, Jackson (own goal), and Bremner. Up to that point a stranger might have been forgiven for taking Chester as the First Division side and Everton the Third. All the best football came from the visitors, whose forward line swinging the ball about freely and progressing by crisp and accurate combination, had the home defence at sixes and sevens. When Everton at last realised something had to be done about it they were not long making up the leeway, Stevenson reduced the deficits just before half-time, and in the second portion a hat-trick to Lawton, who was almost unstoppable this half, made the issue secure, though Everton were lucky to find his third goal counting. To my mind it was well offside.
The Two Debutants.
Chief interest in the home side centred in the two debutants, Lewis and Hankin, both of whom did quite well in the second portion. In the first half they stiffened from Everton’s general depression. Lewis late on displayed some clever ball control and footwork and should be worth persevering with Hankin came to his best when going outside right. At right half, earlier on, he had found Chester’s left wing too big a handful. On this showing Chester should make their mark this season. Their forward line is quick and clever and if the side had carried on with its first half tactics, instead of concentrating too much on defence when Everton threatened danger they might have gaved the game. Bremner was excellent, McIntosh almost as good, and Astbury proved himself as good as winger as he is an inside forward. Everton need to learn a lesson from this game. Though it has been brought home to them before, apparently it still has not sunk in. They must get out of the habit of under-rating the opposition and regarding ex-Third Division clubs as something they can beat at their leisure. More than ever that attitude wants scrapping these days when goal average rules League computation.
September 24, 1940. The Evening Express.
Cook, Mercer, and Britton, who last week were assisting the Army X1 against Notts County at Meadow Lane, return to the Everton side for Saturday’s match with Leeds United at Goodison Park. They displace Jackson, Hankin, and Simmons, who played against Chester. Lewis the 17-year-old amateur, who showed up prominently in last week’s game, continues at outside left. Everton; Sagar; Cook, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Jones, Watson; Britton, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, C.R. Lewis.
September 24, 1940. The Liverpool Echo.
Everton will be at full strength for their game against Leeds United at Goodison Park on Saturday (Kick-off 3 o’clock). Cook, Mercer, and Britton, who played for the Army against Notts County last Saturday, will all be available again, Britton once more appearing at outside right, Wille Cook suffered a bad cut on the head in the Nottingham match, but he hopes to be fit before the week-end. C.R. Lewis, the amateur outside left, gets another chance to show his capabilities. He proved by his second half showing against Chester on Saturday that he has plenty of football ability. Team: - Sagar; Cook, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Jones, Watson; Britton, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, C.R. Lewis.
OLD AND NEW FACES IN LEEDS UNITED SIDE.
September 26, 1940. The Liverpool Echo
Leeds United hope to have six of their regular pre-war side available for the visit to Everton at Goodison Park on Saturday, including Gordon Hodgson, whose further appearance among his old friends of the city will make an appeal to all followers of football. Like all other clubs these days Leeds gave me their team this morning with reservations. The ifs and buts depend on Service players getting leave, and men on national work being required for more import duty; but the side named below is the chosen of the moment. Tom Holley, Leed’s heavy-weight centre half, is a notable absentee through injury, so that a former English schoolboy international, name of Thompson, gets the important job of keeping his weather eye on Tom Lawton. Thompson had been on the Elland-Road ground staff for some season’s and is not to be confused with the Scot of the same name –minus the “P” –who used to grace the Leeds forward line. It seems almost incredible that Willis Edwards should still be figuring in football, yet the Leeds folk tell me he is still as virile and useful as ever, and that his bald head is always to be seen in the thick of the fray. Now in his sixteenth season, at Elland-Road, he must be one of the oldest players on the active service list today, for before that he had a fairish spell with Chesterfield. If I remember right, he made his First Division debut the same day that Dixie Dean made his for Everton, which is going back some.
Like Johnny Walker.
Gordon Hodgson too is getting no younger these day’s, but from all accounts is still giving grand service to the Yorkshire club, who got a rare bargain when they took him into the fold after his short spell with Aston Villa. John Milburn has returned to give war-time service to the club, with which he and his brother made their names as such stalwart defenders. He has as partner these days a son of the old Barnsley player, Gadsby, who helped Barnsley in their triumphant Cup progress just before the last War. In goal Leeds have Corporal A.H. Lee, an amateur who is keeping his place in the side by brilliant work. A gunner in the R.A.F, Lee is one of the many courageous airmen who have been making effective fights over enemy territory and giving the Germans a taste of their own medicine. He is an all round sportsman and at one time was heavyweight boxing champion of the R.A.F. Leeds United: - Corpl A.H. Lee; Milburn (j), Gadsby; Edwards, Thompson, Makinson; Henry, Short, Hodgson, Stephenson, and Hargreaves.
GOODISON’S LANCS, YORKSHIRE DUEL.
September 27, 1940. Evening Express.
The match at Goodison Park apart from the attractiveness of the fixture, is notable for the fact that it is the only meeting scheduled, in the games so far fixed up between the Merseyside area club and a Yorkshire side. Everton are one of the unbeaten sides in the North Section, while Leeds have lost the only away game they have played although the margin was the only goal of the game. Everton have been forced to make a change from the side originally chosen. Cook is unable to play, and Jackson comes in at right back. The Goodison brigade displayed their powers of recovery in the game against Chester, and I expect them to preserve their unbeaten certificate tomorrow. Everton; Sagar; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Jones, Watson; Britton, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, C.R. Lewis.
LEEDS UNITED AT GOODISON
September 27, 1940. The Liverpool Echo
Everton Cannot Take Liberties.
Everton’s game against Leeds United, tomorrow, is the last opportunity Goodison Park supporters will have to see First Division opposition for some weeks, as until mid-November. Everton’s succeeding matches feature clubs from less exalted spheres. Not that this is much to go by these days. With all clubs lumped together in a sort of goal-average Marathon, Jack is just as good as his master in many cases. Everton found that out against Chester last week, and against several others last season, when they fell surprisingly to supposedly weaker sides, who soon upset their “on paper” valuation. The Blues will not be able to take the same liberties with Leeds that they did with Chester. They were fortunate then to recover from a three goal deficit. They won’t always be able to do it in any case, there is no particular merit in such a feat under the present system of reckoning. Goals alone count, and if a club wants to keep a respectable place in the table a 1-0 victory has more merit than turning the game round as Everton did last week fine performance through it was. Tomorrow’s game should provide some good football, for both sides have a big sprinkling of their pre-war players. C.R. Lewis, Everton’s amateur outside left, gave another chance to prove his worth, thanks to his sound second-half display against Chester. This time he comes up against football’s Peter Pan in Willie Edwards, who always adds interest to any Leeds side, and Jack Milburn also well on in football years. Gordon Hodgson is another whose appearance, particularly in this city, always intrigues the football fans, and with a judicious sprinkling of young up-and-coming lads among the old stagers Leeds are working on the same blending lines as Preston, Liverpool and others. Everton make one change from the side announced earlier. Cook is unable to play, and Jackson takes his place. Everton; Sagar; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Jones, Watson; Britton, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson, C.R. Lewis. Leeds: - Corporal A.H. Lee; Millburn (j), Gadsby; Edwards, Thompson, Makinson; Henry, Short, Hodgson, Stephenson, and Hargreaves.
SWIFT REPLAY TO EVERTON.
September 28, 1940. The Evening Express.
Leeds Get on terms.
Everton and Leeds United had strong teams out for their game at Goodison Park today. Leeds included the former Liverpool player Hodgson, at centre forward. Everton: - Sagar (captain), goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Mercer, Jones, and Watson, half-backs; Britton, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson and Lewis, forwards. Leeds United: - A.H. Lee, goal; Milburn, and Gadsby, backs; Makinson, Holley, and Thompson, half-backs; Henry, Baird, Hodgson, Stepheson, and Hargreaves, forwards. Referee Mr. J. Williams (Bolton). Leeds had a narrow escape in the first minute. From a throw-in Britton gained possession and unmarked, he shot into the Leeds goal, Lee fisted away, but not far enough. Lewis snapped on to the ball and sent in a good shot, but it was crowded out. Hodgson then led a raid on the Everton goal, but it was beaten back by Greenhalgh. After five minutes Everton took the lead. Lawton went away and slipped the ball to Stevenson, who sent a terrific shot into the top of the net. Everton maintained the pressure, and the Leeds goal had another escape when Lawton just failed to head a dropping shot from Britton. Hodgson again set up a Leeds attack and served Hargreaves well, but the final shot went over the bar. Hargreaves was again in the picture when he nipped along the wing to send a shot across the Everton goal. Jackson made a timely clearance. Everton’s forward work was delightful and there was plenty of thrust. Leeds United gained an equaliser with a surprise move. Baird found an opening in the Everton defence, and breaking through he scored with a shot which gave Sagar no chance. This goal came after ten minutes’ play. Everton’s reply to this was another determined forward raid. Lee failed to hold a shot from Stevenson, and he was fortunate to re-gather the ball before it rolled into the net. At the other end, following more good work by Hargreaves, Hodgson made a terrific shot which crashed against the Everton post. Stevenson brought Lee to his knees with a shot, and a minute later he had to deal with shots from Bentham and Stevenson.
There was a thrilling moment when Everton bombarded the Leeds goal, Britton first sent in a shot which was completely missed by Lee and the ball was headed off the goal-line by Milburn. A moment later, Milburn, with the ball between his knees on the ground, found himself harassed by Lawton and Lewis. Lee, however, came to his rescue, and it was only with difficulty that Lee was able to make the clearance. Milburn’s defensive work was standing Leeds in good stead. Leeds were awarded a free kick just outside the penalty area, but Hargreaves’ shot went well wide of the mark. Half-Time; Everton 1, Leeds United 1.
September 28, 1940. The Liverpool Echo.
Foil Everton Moves Against Leeds.
One Goal Each
Everton: - Sagar (captain), goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Mercer, Jones, and Watson, half-backs; Britton, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson and Lewis, forwards. Leeds United: - A.H. Lee, goal; Milburn, and Gadsby, backs; Makinson, Holley, and Thompson, half-backs; Henry, Baird, Hodgson, Stepheson, and Hargreaves, forwards. Referee Mr. J. Williams (Bolton). There was only a small attendance at Goodison today to see Everton try conclusions, with Leeds United. They saw some good football in the opening minutes, also a goal in five minutes, some good passing, and a grand final pass by Lawton which enabled Stevenson to go through and crash the ball into the net. Some of the Leeds approach work was of top class. I learned that this will be Lawton’s last match for a few weeks, as he goes to Aldershot on Monday for a refresher course. It was not long, however, before Leeds were on equal terms, precisely ten minutes, and there seemed to be slackness about the Everton defence when Baird scored his goal, for he seemed to have ample room and time tom spare to shoot with deliberation. Goalkeeper Lee was almost caught napping by Bentham, for he allowed the ball to run between his hands and feet, but by quick presence of mind he swept his hands behind his back and stopped the ball from crossing the line.
A Hodgson Drive.
Leeds almost took the lead when Hodgson made one of his big drives, Sagar was well and truly beaten, and must have been thankful when he saw the ball bump against the upright and rebounded into play. Everton were attacking with plenty of skill and aggression and Lawton had desperate bad luck when he headed over the bar. Stevenson should have done better than he did when he was left with a grand opening, but he got too much under his shot, the ball going high over the ball.
Everton held the whip hand for some time, and the Leed’s defence had much active work to perform. Lee once again fumbled the ball and Stevenson took full advantage of it, in that he took possession and lobbed the ball into the goalmouth. That ball would have gone into the net had it not been for Milburn’s head, thus the Leeds full back had twice saved his goalkeeper when he was beaten. Holley and Lawton had many interesting duels will the former coming out the more successful. Once Holley lay on the ball, and while being hotly challenged by several Everton men Lee crept underneath him and collected the ball to relieve a dangerous situation. A free kick against Everton saw Hodgson trying to work the old tricks of feinting to take the free kick, whereas he stepped over the ball to allow Hargreaves actually to shoot, but the winger’s direction was really bad, the ball finishing nearer the corner flag than the goal.
Half-Time; Everton 1, Leeds United 1.
EVERTON SCORE FIVE.
September 30, 1940. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 5, Leeds United 1
Leeds United Out-Pointed At Goodison
The promise that the Everton-Leeds United game at Goodison Park would be a close one was not fulfilled, for Everton proved too strong for the Yorkshire side, which was good in parts, and that was in approach work, which, however, lacked finality. On the other hand, Everton were not only good in approach work, but vastly superior in their shooting. That is the reason why they won 5-1. Had Everton accepted all their chances, the Leeds goal would have been riddled to the extent of several more goals but the forwards, who could, and did, cut through the Leeds defence rather easily, failed at the crucial moments. True, they took an early lead, but it was not long before the United had negative Stevenson’s goal by one from Baird, and most of us sat back contemplating a keen struggle for supremacy. Goalkeeper Lee, the Leeds amateur goalkeeper, almost fuzzled a shot from Bentham, and then Sagar held a watching brief when Hodgson crashed a hot drive against the upright. Sagar had been almost workless, and Everton took complete command, and the second half, produced for them four further goals –mercer, Bentham (2), and Lawton. United had started out full of promise, but they were gradually worn down until they were practically confined to defensive measures in order to keep Everton’s goal account to within reasonable limits, Milburn twice saved his keeper by timely interventions with head and foot, and Lewis while playing well in the outfield, was weak in front of goal. He had the ponderous Milburn to deal with, and for a time was at a loss as to how to deal with this powerful back, but eventually he got the upper hand, and with good ball control did well. All he needed was a goal –he should have had two –to clinch a good match.
Lawton In Form.
Lawton was in fine form; it was not until the last minute that he notched his goal, but his leadership was top-class, and he had a hand in the making of several of the goals. He leaves the district today for a refresher course, so will not be available to Everton for some weeks. Gordon Hodgson had one shot and one shot only –Jones looked after him like a nurse and saw to it that he did not become too troublesome. The most spectacular goal was that of Mercer’s. He and Britton linked up in a two-piece suite, the outside right slipping a perfect ball for Mercer to steer into the net. Bentham was top scorer with two goals. Lee made contact with one but could not keep the ball out, and Stevenson’s opening goal was in the nature of a gift from Lawton. The Irishman was in clever mood. When Baird scored for Leeds the Everton defence could not be considered blameless for he had both time and space to work the ball before he finally sent it beyond Sagar. I was not impressed with the amateur goalkeeper Lee, for he fumbled one or two balls and was not nearly so secure as the Everton keeper. . Everton: - Sagar (captain), goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Mercer, Jones, and Watson, half-backs; Britton, Bentham, Lawton, Stevenson and Lewis, forwards. Leeds United: - A.H. Lee, goal; Milburn, and Gadsby, backs; Makinson, Holley, and Thompson, half-backs; Henry, Baird, Hodgson, Stepheson, and Hargreaves, forwards. Referee Mr. J. Williams (Bolton).
EVERTON GOOD DAY
September 30, 1940. The Evening Express.
Everton reached the top of their form in the game against Leeds United at Goodison Park. Their 5-1 victory over the Yorkshiremen was due to their all round superiority, and the fine understanding between the forwards and half-backs. Only in defence did the Leeds men match Everton. Until shortly after the interval Milburn and Gadsby at full back and Holley at centre half did well, but under an attack such as that set up and maintained by Lawton, Stevenson, Bentham and Britton, few defences in the country could have held out so long. Behind the Everton forwards was Mercer in dazzling form. His work was a pleasure to watch and during the second half he and Britton –with perfect passes was largely responsible for the final breaking down of the Leeds defence. During the second half, Lawton had a bad shaking and took the inside forward position, for Stevenson to play at centre forward, but the line was none the less effective, and Lawton finished up a good afternoon’s work with a “peach” of a goal. It was a first time low drive past the foot of the post. C.R. Lewis, the Everton winger, is making rapid progress. He deserved the many plaudits for neat and clever runs. Twice he came within an ace of notching goals. Gordon Hodgson the former Liverpool centre forward, was the leader of the line, which was weak on the wings, and as a loan ranger he was too well watched by tom Jones, the Everton centre-half. Everton’s goals were scored by Stevenson, Mercer, Bentham (2), and Lawton, and for Leeds United Baird.
September 30, 1940. The Liverpool Echo
Leeds United were no match for Everton at Goodison Park, even though there were some big names included in their team sheet. They started well enough, but did not maintain it, so that Everton cantered home to an easy victory. This game had promised a lot for the Yorkshire side were considered just the team to test Everton to the full, but as things turned out, the game ended on a dullish note, because the one-sided to keep the interest. The great difference in the teams in the early moments was marksmanship. Up to a point, at one stage at least. Leeds gave as good as they received in the matter of skill, but they fell hopelessly behind when it came to shooting. Sagar would agree with me that he had a comfortable match. Apart from Baird’s goal, with which he had no chance, he was hardly called upon to handle a ball. Yet there was one which had him well beaten. Hodgson pumped in one of his Anfield specials, and it was shivered the Everton timber. An inch the other way and Sagar would have had to visit the back of the net. That was Gordon’s only shot. How come? Jones was the answer. Up to the penalty box the United were sprightly but after that they were clamped down as though in a vice. Their goal came through a little slackness which left Baird with all the world to shoot at. Gradually, but assuredly, Everton took command. They got on top and stayed there to the end, adding four goals to their one at the interval. It should have been more, for they were there to be taken, simple ones, too. Lewis twice erred in this respect, but he was not alone, for Stevenson and Bentham and Lawton missed their way on occasion. Nevertheless, one could always visualise a complete Everton victory, for they were ever the more dangerous looking side. With their forwards getting plenty of the ball from a strong half back line, they were incessantly round and about the Leeds goal.