HARRIS JOINING BANGOR
July 1, 1953. Liverpool Echo
Joe Harris, the former Marine amateur winger, who joined Everton as a professional three years ago, is to sign for Bangor the Cheshire County League side. Harris asked for his transfer from Everton half-way through last season and last May was included among the four players for whom Everton were ready to consider offers. Harris, who is 26, follows several other former Evertonians, including Higgins, Corr and Greenhalgh, who in previous years have thrown in their lot with the Welsh club. Terms have been arranged between the players and his new club, and Harris goes to Bangor to complete the forms later this week. He should prove a very useful help to the Welsh side. He displayed good form when playing in thirteen of Everton's first 14 senior games last season, scoring four goals and making some good openings for the inside men. He is strong, speedy and possesses a good shot.
July 10, 1953. The Liverpool Echo
Everton F.C had made two signings with an eye to the future. They concern two youngsters who have signed as part-time professionals. Charles Fitzsimmons (18) is a wing half-back. A product of Maghull junior football, he played a number of games for the Central League X1 last season, but mostly in the “A” team. He stands 5ft 10ins and scales 11st. The other is Peter Fairclough 18-year-old former junior international goalkeeper for England. He also played a couple of games in the Reserves last season, but injured his wrist and was out of the game for a long time. He formerly played for Bootle Schoolboys, is 5ft 11ins and weights 12st.
In the first round of the Lancashire F.A Cup next season Everton have been drawn to play Liverpool at Goodison Park.
SOCCER PLAYERS REPORT
July 31, 1953. The Liverpool Echo
Canadian Gordon Stewart Gets A Warm Welcome At Goodison Park
“Gee this is a wonderful ground said Gordon Stewart, Everton's Canadian-born inside forward of Scottish descent who has come 6,000 miles to try his luck in English football as he stood in the directors box at Goodison Park this morning and looked out over the Everton pitch and stand. It was not surprising Stewart was impressed. He told me they have nothing “back home” which comes anywhere near Goodison Park for size, dressing rooms or other accommodation. “I hope to make good news” he went on, “I have received a splendid welcome and now I guess it is up to me to do the rest. “I shall certainly try hard.” Stewart who is 24 years of age, 5ft and weighs 11st 6lbs, is very shockily built and looks as though he can take plenty of hard knocks. He turned down a definite offer from Tottenham Hotspurs and from Newcastle and Fulham before deciding to throw in his lot with Everton.
If he succeeds he wants to continue with his trade as a telephone mechanic, but for the time being he will concentrate on first things first and devote all his time to training and practice at Goodison Park.
After flying the Atlantic he was met by Mr. Harold Pickering at Prestwick, yesterday morning and by Manager Cliff Britton last evening. Mr. Britton introduced him to his new colleagues when the Everton professionals reported for training this morning and Skipper Peter Farrell and the rest of the players gave him so warm and friendly a welcome that he soon felt at home. Stewart is married, with a two-weeks-old child, but the question of his family coming over here will not be decided until later. “It depends on how I get on and whether I make the grade,” he said. For the time being he is in lodgings with another Everton player.
In welcoming the players back to Goodison Mr. Ernest Green, the club's chairman had a special word for Stewart “You have come among a very fine and friendly lot of lads” he said” and we all wish you success and happiness. In the remarks to the players generally, Mr. Green said he did not agree with those who looked only at the League table and said that the Everton side was not good enough. He felt that a team which could beat Huddersfield, Manchester United, Aston Villa, Liverpool and Clyde was all right. “In the match against Clyde at Dublin I have never seen any team anywhere at any time put up a better exhibition of first-class and fast-moving football than we did. We finished last season very strongly and if you start the coming campaign in the same way you will soon put the club right on the map. Manager Britton, adding his welcome to that of the chairman said he was pleased to see everybody looking so fit. Last season no club could have had a better response from its players with regard to training. Everybody had done his utmost; and though it was a little disappointing that the side did not “click” from the League point of view, he hoped that the coming season would bring better fortunes and see the club return to the First Division.
After the speeches of welcome the players stripped and went out for an initial spin of road work. This will be the major item in the proceedings for the rest of this weeks in order to get leg muscles back to full strength and reliability. When that has been done will come ball work and the usual training schedule. Everton have made some alterations in their back-room arrangements for the coming season, the most important of which is that Harry Cooke, while remaining head of the training staff, will hand over the job of looking after the first team to Charles Leyfield who has deputized in past seasons on the very rare occasions that Harry Cooke has not been able to turn out. The latter in future will confine his activities at Goodison to taking care of injured players in conjunction with the club's medical adviser and physic therapist, in an endeavour to restore them to fitness with the minimum of delay. Harry Cooke has well earned a lightening of the load which he has carried for so long. Despite his age he has retained amazingly fit. I have long envised him the case which he can sprint on to the field. Though I am well over a dozen years his junior, Harry can leave me yards behind and whereas I puff and blow like a grampus after any unusual exertion, Everton's grand old man takes it in his stride without so much as a tremor. Cooke, who originally went to Everton as an inside forward not far from fifty years ago, turned his attention to the training and massage side of football when a knee injury brought his career to a premature end. Harry took over the first team trainers job in July, 1926 in succession to Jack Elliott and during 27 years in that position has missed barely a dozen senior matches. He has given the club splendid service, always with a cheerful smile and never a grumble I have never heard him say a cross word to anybody or criticize a player though many a hard-in-handle temperamental one has passed through his hands.
Promotion For Watson
Charlie Leyfield's appointment to the first team means that Gordon Watson now becomes trainer of the Central League side, Leyfield, a former Everton player who later had service with Sheffield United and Doncaster Rovers, and afterwards was trainer to Wrexham, returned to Goodison just over three years ago. He is extremely popular with the players. Leyfield and Watson along with Stan Bentham will also carry on their usual coaching duties. Ted Sagar, his playing days over after nearly a quarter of a century, has now started a new career on the ground staff, though his experience and knowledge will be available whenever necessary, in helping the club's junior goalkeepers. Everton have 29 full time professionals and seven part-timers. The latters who report for training this evening are Dunlop, Mayers, Thomas, Kirby, Vizard, Heyes, and A. Farrell. Dunlop will be leaving towards the end of this year to do his national service. He is only one due to depart during the coming season although Rea and Forshaw went a couple of months ago. Rea is stationed a Aldershot and Forshaw at Devonshire.
Back To Civvies
Two players will shortly return to Goodison after completing their National Service. There are Jimmy Harris an inside forward who has been in Germany and Bernard Molyneux a left back whose Army duties took him to Malaya. Altogether Everton have ten players in the Forces including the last two. Another new departure at Goodison this season is that the club has taken over the job of providing the midday meals for the players. Hithero the catering was let out on contract. The change has been made for several reasons. One is that it will be more economical; another is that with their own culinary staff, individual preferences may be studied a little more than is normally the case
• Gordon Stewart Everton's new inside forward from Vancouver, British Columbia “weight n” today when he reported for training with the rest of the players. Harry Cooke head of the Goodison Park training staff, is recording his height and weight as Peter Farrell and Dave Hickson (right) look on. Photo in Echo