BIG TEST FOR BLUES
December 3, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
The measure of Everton’s recent successes will be strongly felted against Wolverhampton at Molyneux Park. If they can put up a good show there it will prove that although three of their last four victories have been against bottom-of-the-table sides, there is more in their improvement that just the fact of meeting lowly opposition. Wolves, though inclined to be erratic, are a brilliant side when the ball runs kindly for them, particularly in attack. Their total of 40 goals is only exceeded by Manchester United (41). They have scored three on six occasions and got seven against Huddersfield and five against Bolton. Fortunately Everton’s defence latterly has been so well-knit that it can face even the virile Wolves’ forwards with reasonable confidence. The proof of the pudding will again be the success of Everton’s forward work. Corr shows much promise, but elsewhere though the players are dovetailed together much better, and also keeping the ball on the ground, there is still room for improvement. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Hedley; Lindley, Jones, Farrell; Corr, Bentham, Catterick, Fielding, Eglington. Wolves; Williams; Kelly, Pitchard, Baxter, Shorthouse, Wright; Hancock, Forbes, Pye, Smyth, Mullen.
Everton Reserves (v. Derby County Reserves at Goodison Park); Jones; Clinton, Dugdale; Cameron, Falder, Grant; Higgins, Powell, Juliussen, Lello, J.W. Parker.
November 3, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton travel to Molineux with a proud record to defend. In post-war football Everton have paid three visits to the ground and remained unbeaten. Both League games were won, and a cup-tie was drawn. The Blues have won their last three games to ease considerably their League position, and apart entirely from the tightening-up in defence, the whole side is operating with greater confidence and verve. Catterick will be back leading the Everton attack, this being the only change. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Hedley; Lindley, Jones, Farrell; Corr, Bentham, Catterick, Fielding, Eglington. Wolves; Williams; Kelly, Pitchard, Baxter, Shorthouse, Wright; Hancock, Forbes, Pye, Smyth, Mullen.
LIVELY WOLVES MISSED SCORING REVEL
December 4, 1948. The Liverpool Football Echo
Shared Everton’s Fault of Poor Finishing
Against Galliant Defence
Wolves 1, Everton nil.
Wolves should have won this match with much to spare. That they didn’t was due to a good Everton defence and a lot of poor shooting by the Wolves’ attack. Everton had Catterick injured for the last half-hour, but even with the team intact the line had only two strikers –Catterick and Corr. Wolverhampton Wanderers;- Williams, goal; Kelly and Pritchard, backs; Baxter, Shorthouse, and Wright (captain), half-backs; Hancocks, Forbes, Pye, Smyth, and Mullen, forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Hedley, backs; Lindley, Jones and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Corr, Bentham, Catterick, Fielding and Eglington, forwards. Referee; Mr. G. Tedds, (Notts). One of Major Buckley’s “boys” Baxter made his first appearance in the Wolves first team in a career of ten seasons at Molinuex. Forbes was moved to inside right in place of Dunn, son of the former Everton forward. Wright, the Wolves and England captain, was fit again after the blow he received to the face in the international at Highbury. It was a perfect day for football and Everton took what little advantage there was when they kicked away from the town goal with the sun at their backs. After Saunders had made two excellent interventions in Wolves’ left wing attacks, Catterick by his persistence got the ball over to Eglington, who beat Kelly for speed and centred the ball dangerously above the far angle. Lindley then tackled Smyth most opportunately as that forward picked up a low centre from the “jinking” Hancocks. A grand Corr past along the right wing led to Catterick dummying his way to a good pass to Eglington who had come inside, but when Eglington turned the ball back for Corr to shoot, the winger failed to hit the ball truly. Most of the Wolves attacks came from the left wing where a Mullen-Smyth effort was worth a goal. Smyth was very wide with the shot. Jones stood out head and shoulders above the reminder of the Everton defence, both physically and in effect. Already he had made three or four vital headers when Wolves looked like scoring and now he stopped Pye after Pye had gone to the right wing to beat Hedley and moved inside to make a shot.
Wolves Fluent Style.
The Everton attack moved by fits and starts as against the fluent quicksilver style of the Wolves but there were signs that Everton were improving even if some of their left wing work was too obvious to be highly successful. Wolves went ahead at twenty minutes through Pye. Smyth made an angle shot which beat Sagar, but which Hedley kicked away from the line. Pye, standing a few yards out picked the ball up and with admirable coolness and sureness had it in the net for the easiest of goals. The trouble with Everton appeared to me to be that neither inside forward could do sufficient to prevent the Wolverhampton half backs and inside forwards making the centre of the field very much their domain.
Sagar had to save and then scramble after a Mullen shot which he could not grasp at the first attempt. For some reasons Wolves were making little use of Hancocks. Both Saunders and Lindley were battling bravely and well against the persistent Wolves left wing. Catterick and Eglington, in a quick duel, almost worked a shooting chance, but Eglington was far from happy in most of the things he did and seemed to find the ball difficult to bring under control. The way Everton threw away hard won positions in attack was lamentable. After making a pick-up Sagar threw the ball straight to Hancocks who was so surprised he was unable to beat Hedley, and make a shooting chance.
The Everton goal had an amazing escape when Mullen hit the far post with Sagar beaten, and Hedley standing on the line but unable to do anything about it. The ball rebounded almost along the line, and by this time, Sagar had recovered his poise and had pounced on it to make a remarkable recovery. Saunders was still doing excellent work and so was Jones, but Bentham was slow in getting the ball under control and the Wolves half backs stood on no ceremony. Promising Everton attacks petered out through rather haphazard finishing. The best thing of the match so far was when Hancocks received the ball ten yards outside the penalty box, hit it on the half volley immediately he had got it under control and caused Sagar to stretch out to the post to ensure that a fierce drive passed outside. Everton fell much too readily into offside traps. Everton were unlucky again when a Corr centre led first to Eglington having a shot blocked out, Bentham picking up the ball and being foiled only by Williams running out and getting his body in front of the lost. Williams made a first-rate save from Bentham immediately afterwards. At the interval many of the 35,000 crowd must have wondered why Everton are in such a lowly position but having seen for themselves the forward failings they would know the answer. Eglington made a vicious shot only a foot wide of the goal angle right on the interval. From a Corr corner Williams misjudged his punch, and the ball went out to Eglington, who shot-and it was on the mark –struck the referee on the back.
Half-time; Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Everton nil.
After Catterick had made a good header which finished over the top, he chased up to the goal line for a through pass and in trying to centre the ball fell on the running track and damaged a leg. Catterick was assisted on the long journey to the dressing-room with what appeared to be a badly lacerated knee. Meanwhile, Wolves had gone on their profligate way, missing chances after chances. It was an undistinguished match with many mistakes in front of goal. Minus Catterick Everton fell back completely on the defensive.
Mullen could have won this match four or five times off his own bat with even reasonable shooting. His shooting was frightful. When Everton contrived to take some of the weight off the defence in a left wing move, Eglington’s shot was fingered away by Williams, and it was well for the goalkeeper that no Everton inside forward were up to pick up an easy chance. Rather than try a big shot from a free kick, Tom Jones tried to lift the ball and came near to succeeding and then after a ten minutes’ absence Catterick came back to hobble at outside right with Corr centre-forward.
Corr made some neat flicks and at one point went to outside left to deliver the centre from which even the handicapped Catterick was all but a scorer as he drifted in from the right. The Everton defence, heavily over worked lost a little of its poise, but considering the pressure, had done well to keep the score to one goal. Although obviously in pain, Catterick bravely used the ball to advantage on the right wing. Although Sagar fielded no shots for a long interval, he caught all sorts of high stuff with a sure touch and a supreme confidence. Final; Wolves 1, Everton 0.
EVERTON RES V DERBY RESERVES
December 4, 1948. The Evening Express
Everton had the better of the opening exchanges and should have taken an earlier lead through Juliussen. The Everton goal had a narrow escape when Taft put in a good shot that was brilliantly saved by Jones. Derby at this stage held the monopoly and in the 34th minute Parkin put them ahead. Half-time; Everton Res 0, Derby Res 1. Derby were the more alert, side after the resumption, Jones, the Blues goalkeeper being kept busy. The Everton goal had a narrow escape when Parkin hit the upright with the goalkeeper out. Final; Everton Res 2, Derby Res 1.
AN UPHILL FIGHT AGAINST WOLVES
December 4, 1948. The Evening Express
Catterick Hurt, Goes To The Right Wing For Everton
Everton fought a gallant but fruitless uphill battle against Wolverhampton Wanderers after being behind to Pye’s 17th minute goal. Luck was against the Blues, for on the interval three winning efforts struck opponents and went to safely, and after 55 minutes went off with an ankle injury for 15 minutes, returning limping to the right wing. Everton’s defence was sound in a game which thrilled only in spasms, but in which Wolves made more mistakes than Everton. Everton were striving to record a “hat-trick” of wins at Molyneux where they had not lost since the war. They had Harry Catterick back at centre forward. The Wolves left out Jimmy Dunn, moving Forbes to inside right and bringing in Baxter to right half. Wolverhampton Wanderers;- Williams, goal; Kelly and Pritchard, backs; Baxter, Shorthouse, and Wright (captain), half-backs; Hancocks, Forbes, Pye, Smyth, and Mullen, forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Hedley, backs; Lindley, Jones and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Corr, Bentham, Catterick, Fielding and Eglington, forwards. Referee; Mr. G. Tedds, (Bestwood, Notts). Wily Wright, who said he was still suffering slightly from the blow in the face he received in Thursday’s international, was the engineer of Wolves opening raids as they faced the slanting sun. But Everton’s good cover offset some neat control, and Catterick’s wide winging pass to Eglington saw Tommy round Kelly and fire a grand shot just over the angle. Hancocks showed us England “wares” cleverly, only to find that Saunders had raced across to stop him, and although the ball ran to Forbes, the shot was high and wide. The intricate Pye came away to the wings but he could find no solution to the Tommy Jones’ barrier and Wolves only real effort was a Smyth shot well over. Catterick and Eglington opened up the way for the in running Corr who just could not get hold of it properly. Saunders managed to deflect a fierce Pye drive in a game so far dominated by the half-backs.
Wolves in Lead
In 17 minutes Wolves took the lead but the scorer would be first to hand full credit to Wright who raced through to send Mullen away. The low centre was deflected to Smyth whose shot was kicked off the goal line by Hedley. Pye, in a rather leisurely way, stabbed it home from short range. Sagar went down to save a shot from Mullen and then Williams came out to hold Corr’s centre as Catterick dashed in. Wolves were on top and Sagar saved a header from Pye. Sagar saved a high free kick from Pritchard before we had the best thrill so far. Mullen dallied tantalisingly, then suddenly as Sagar moved across goal he shot low. The ball struck the foot of the far post and bounced back into play for Sagar to dive on it. What an escape! Corr went through again and outwitted Wright and Pritchard to shoot on the run. The ball beat the diving Williams and flashed by the far post. Everton were finding it difficult to shake the grip of the Wanderers half-backs, and their raids were only spasmodic. Williams ran out to prevent Catterick getting to work on an Eglington centre before Hancock’s almost grazed the post with a 20-yarder. Came Wolves’ stroke of good fortune, following Lindley’s throw-in for Eglington had his “winner” charged down. Then Catterick tried to stab it home, but the ball struck Williams, who was on the floor. Next Everton showed their fighting spirit with another sharp raid. Bentham shot first time for Williams to save high up. Eglington made a great effort when he rounded Kelly and Shorthouse, and a splendid shot on the run hit the net support. Corr’s corner was speeding home when Williams raced across, and the ball struck him.
Half-time; Wolves 1, Everton 0.
Everton’s way to recovery had been truly undigated in the first half by the comparatively easy manner in Corr and Eglington out-stripped Pritchard and Kelly. But it was the Wolves who tried to cash in on their near interval good fortune. Hancock’s header going over. In 55 minutes Catterick chased a ball to the line and after hooking it behind crashed into the concrete surround and lay flat just as Reid of Portsmouth had done at Anfield some weeks ago. Both trainers dashed across and then a stretcher was called. Fortunately, no stretcher was needed. Trainer Harry Cooke removed Catterick’s left boot and the player walked behind the goal where he insisted on having his boot put on again. This was done and Catterick then left the field. Catterick must be one of football’s unluckiest players, for this was his first game following injury and with his departure the outlook was pretty grim, yet Everton were more than holding their own against a Wolverhampton wasting chances and misusing the final pass. Eglington was brought into the game and Williams had to dive out to divert his low centre. Bentham was fouled on the edge of the area and Jones’ lobbed shot almost took Williams by surprise. Catterick came back in the 70th minute, going to outside right with Corr in the centre. Everton made the mistake of neglecting Eglington and so easing the task of the Wolves, for Eglington was the complete master of Kelly. As it was, the Wolves did more of the attacking without being able to shake Jones, the backs or Sagar. Corr went to outside-left to make a dangerous raid, but Kelly caught him just as he was about to centre. The result was just even, allowing for these strokes of good fortune which attended the Wolves. Final; Wolves 1, Everton 0.
EVERTON RES V DERBY RES
November 4, 1948. The Evening Express
Everton were the first to become dangerous Juliussen missing a fine opportunity with only the keeper to beat. Derby made several break-always, but Downes, Clinton and Dugdale were two fine defenders. Following a well combined move by Parkin and Taft, the latter put in a powerful delivery, the Everton keeper saving brilliantly at the expense of a fruitless corner. Derby at this stage were the more dangerous, and in the 36th minute Parkin gave them the lead. Half-time; Everton Res 0, Derby res 1.
Derby attacked vigorously after the restart, the Everton defence having a grim task in preventing them from increasing their lead. Disaster nearly befell the Everton goal when Parkin hit the upright and put the keeper out of his charge. Final; Everton Res 2, Derby Res 1.
• U.G.B Res 1, Everton “B” 2
• Everton “A” 4, South Liverpool 1, Liverpool Challenge Cup (second Round).
EVERTON WILL TO WIN IS THERE, BUT...
December 6, 1948. The Liverpool Daily Post
Wolverhampton Wanderers 1, Everton 0
Everton are struggling with great gallantry to retrieve and reprieve themselves. The question arises; “Can determination and courage and intense effort alone produce success by which they can raise themselves”? The answer, I submit, must be no. Sport of every kind is now so stern that will to win breaks down when opposed to greater talent plus will to win. I have seen Everton in many matches this season and it is plain their players are as much concerned over non-success as those in charge. There has been astonishing improvement in the short space of a few weeks; the defence has been tightened up and the side is not continually overwhelmed by goals as it was. The problem now is the more difficult one of discovering an attack to get goals. To be constructive one must name a better substitute for any player criticised, but even this may be impossible.
Latest Everton performance, one of much merit, showed that better results might be obtained if there were less opportunity for opponents to have things so much their own way in certain mid-field areas. Wolverhampton seemed to farm some of these and to do pretty well as they liked in them, and the ball was continually coming back at Jones and the defence in a serious of attacks which must have succeeded to a greater extent than one goal had the forwards hit true shots. It was an uncommon game in several respects. Wolves, taking even half their chances would have won easily; Everton, but for two pieces of misfortune might have drawn or even won. Misfortune No 1 came when Eglington’s on the mark shot struck the referee; the second was the injury to Catterick, who after leaving the field for ten minutes, spent the last thirty minutes hobbling on the right wing. His injury, I believe is not serious.
Wolves, not only the faster and more talented side had a preference for the Mullen wing and ironical, cheers greeted the few occasions on which right winger. Handcocks received chances. The best of Everton thrusts came from Corr (right foot shot which flashed across the goal after seeming certain to enter it), and a useful drive by Bentham off which Williams made his best save of the day. He had earlier left goal to smother Bentham, when that player seemed most likely to score. The goal by Pye, came mid-way through the first half and was taken with nonchalance after Hedley had kicked a shot off the goaline. The Everton defence did many heroics when the Wolverhampton pressure was greatest and from goal to left half-back there was no real weakness. Saunders and Jones were both splendid. As I saw it the front line was mainly dangerous by reason of Catterick and Corr. Bentham did not “stay.” Even when injured Catterick used the ball with fine judgement. It is a pity he is not in a line offering more solid support. Everton’s attack were dangerous but were not nearly so frequent nor so free and flowing as Wolves’ who had the extraordinary Wright delivery service at their backs.
December 6, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Injuries continue to fall thick and heavy upon Everton whose defeat was offset by the fallings of fellow-strugglers Aston Villa and Preston North End so that the Blues dropped only two places. Harry Catterick’s ill-luck is becoming momentously regular, but the twisted ankle which him little more than a passenger for the last 35 minutes of the Molineux game should not keep him out of action this week. The loss of Harry on Saturday, however, evaporated any hopes Everton had saving the game which Pye’s simple goal decided. Catterick was having a grand game, and when he was injured there was little striking power for Bentham and Fielding mustered only one real shot between them. Corr was excellent again in a game not exactly of First Division quality and which a full-strength Everton would not have had a lot to beat. Tactical error was the tantalising persistence with which the injured Catterick at outside-right was piled with the ball whereas Eglington was allowed to languish on the left although the complete master of Kelly in approach. No one doubted the earnestness of Fielding and Bentham but a desire to have “two bites at the cherry” before making the pass often caused the incisive Corr. Catterick and Eglington to fall victims of offside. Farrell had what was in my opinion, his best game of the season while Lindley was progressive and active, but... the superiority of the Wolves wing half-backs and Wright in particular (I doubt whether there ever was a better ) was the main reason why wolves had more of the game. Defensively Everton were superior with Jones again the flawness centre-half; Saunders and Hedley excellent backs, and Sagar his reliable self.
The 1948 edition of Tommy Jones is in my opinion the best ever during Tommy’s career and there is no centre-half in football playing as well as he just now. Around Jones revolves this guard defensive machine which is six games has conceded only four goals. True it might have been more on Saturday, but blame the wildness of Wanderers shooting for that to an extent. Wolves had their escapes just before the interval when scoring shots hit everything but the net. But....luck was not all with Wolves who I think deserved their win although chairman Mr. J. S. Baker and his colleagues were convinced that Everton should have had a point.
December 6, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
To be beaten 1-0 at Wolverhampton is not disgracing but unfortunately its effect is almost the same as being beaten by a heavier margin (write Contact). Everton’s form is progressively better, but the almost total absence of goals in away fixtures is still disturbing. As goals in away fixtures is still disturbing have Molineux. Everton might conceivably have drawn or even won and if they had I should have credited them with the merit of opportunism. At the same time, Wolves fabulous misdirection of the ball in many shots was the real reason why the game remained close and left Everton with chances, even when Catterick hobbled through injury at outside right. Everton were luckless when Eglington hit the referee with a shot which might have found the mark, and in several other instances when they seemed to have done sufficient to get a goal. But allowing for these cases the attack moved up in rather laboured fashion and not in the same free way as Wolves. Defensively, Everton have cause to be pleased as whatever new system they have adopted has proved itself by results. The defence is playing really well and covering up splendidly. The most notable difference between the sides I thought was Wolverhampton’s complete command of the centre of the field, where some of Everton’s challenge lacked fire.
December 7, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Harry Catterick, the Everton centre-forward, must be marked down as extremely doubtful for next Saturday’s match with Bolton Wanderers at Goodison Park. At the moment, Catterick has his left ankle in plaster. This it disappointing news, especially in view of the fact that Catterick after twisting an ankle in the match at Wolverhampton last Saturday, was off for 15 minutes, but then returned to complete the game –and, in fact, almost scored an equaliser. In other words, it did not look too serious. Catterick went to his Stockport home on Saturday night, and on Sunday morning the ankle was badly swollen. Catterick’s doctor was called in, and yesterday Harry was ordered to Stockport Hopsital, where he had an X-ray examination. The good news is that no bonus are broken, but the ankle was placed in plaster, and Manager Cliff Britton says that Catterick must be regarded as a very doubtful starter. The injury “bogy” seems to hang over Catterick, not only a fortnight ago he pulled a muscle when playing against the Army at Aldershot and so had to miss Everton’s last home game against Sunderland. All the other players are fit, but team selection will naturally he delayed for a few days.
EVERTON’S VITAL NEED
December 10, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Though the visit of Bolton Wanderers to Goodison Park tomorrow constitutes the hardest home fixture Everton have had since Derby County were here their improvement in the interim should enable them to face the “Trotters” without an inferiority complex. Apart from three goals columns, both sides recent performances have been strikingly similar. Bolton have got nine points out of the last twelve played for, and Everton have got eight. But whereas the Blues have scored only 6 goals in these six games, Bolton tally is 16. Unfortunately Everton will be without Catterick, and Juliussen who takes his place has not yet struck his scoring form. Fielding and Eglington have still to find the net for the first time this season, and Stevenson has scored only once. When Everton start hitting the target more often, half their troubles will disappear for the defence is sound. The sooner that happy day comes the better. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Hedley; Lindley, Jones, Farrell; Corr, Stevenson, Juliussen, Fielding, Eglington. Bolton; Elvy; Roberts, Banks; Howe, Gillies, Murphy, Woodward, Moir, Barrass, Bradley, McShane.
November 10, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton appear at Goodison Park against Bolton Wanderers and seek their fifth win of the season. Everton must win their home points with things not running so well away and if their forwards can strike shooting accuracy they should succeed against a side better in attack than in defence. The fact that Everton have conceded only four goals in their last six matches testifies to the soundness of the defence, which should be capable of holding Barrass and company, but the Blues’ own attackers must seize avidly on all chances. Harry Catterick is not fit, so Juliussen returns to lead the forwards, and Stevenson comes in at inside-right to partner Corr in a game starting at 2.15 p.m. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Hedley; Lindley, Jones, Farrell; Corr, Stevenson, Juliussen, Fielding, Eglington. Bolton; Elvy; Roberts, Banks; Howe, Gillies, Murphy, Woodward, Moir, Barrass, Bradley, McShane.
• Everton “B” v. Liverpool “B” at Bellefield
EVERTON’S LAST-MINUTE WINNER
December 11, 1948. The Evening Express
Eglington Header Keeps Up Blues’ Home Win Sequence
Surprise Goal Against Bolton When Draw Seemed certain
Once again the Everton forwards, failed to find their shooting boots in a hard-fought duel in their game with Bolton Wanderers at Goodison Park today. Defences held the mastery in a scrappy opening half, during which both Corr and Stevenson missed easy chances, and most of the thrills came after the interval. Eglington, who had one of his best games, shaved the bar during a period when the Everton forwards played attractive progressive football, while Bolton’s Bradley headed against the upright with Sagar well beaten. Everton would be pleased with the return to form of Peter Farrell, while Tommy Jones was his usual steady self in command of the centre of the field. Eglington scored the winner in semi-darkness with only a minute to go. Everton seeking their fourth successive home victory, made two changes in attack. Luckless Harry Catterick, injured again at Wolverhampton last Saturday, was unfit and Juliussen deputised at centre-forward, while Stevenson returned at inside-right to the exclusion of Bentham. Bolton were satisfied with the team which defeated Preston at Burnden Park last week. Everton manager Cliff Britton was away again on yet another scouting mission. News of Everton’s casualties is that Eddie Wainwright expects to resume training two weeks, hence following his appendix operation, while Johnny Mcllhatton completed his special treatment at Wolverhampton today and will be training again next week. George Jackson and Gordon Watson although training, are not yet fit, but are taking part in important scouting tasks for Manager Britton. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Hedley, backs; Lindley, Jones and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Corr, Stevenson, Juliussen, Fielding and Eglington, forwards. Bolton Wanderers;- Elvy, goal; Roberts and Banks (R.), backs; Howe, Gillies, and Murphy, half-backs; Woodward, Moir, Barass, Bradley, and McShane, forwards. Referee; Mr. J. H. Parker, (Macclesfield). Everton had the advantage of a fairly gusty wind and after Bradley had flashed the ball a yard wide with a nice opening in Bolton’s preliminary excursion. Eglington cut inside and swept the ball out to Corr on the opposite flank. Corr outwitted banks but his centre, placed to the far post, found no other Everton forward in the vicinity. Things looked ominous when McShane and Bradley caught the right defensive flanks on the “hop” but Sagar went up flight to deal with McShane’s centre. Murphy let go a storming 30 yarder which flashed over the top. Corr and Eglington combined to provide a long range chance for Fielding, but his shot also carried too much loft. Bolton set up a sustained attack but successive corners, did not produce a shot to test Sagar.
Out of Reach
Juliussen’s slowness to possession enabled Gillies to step in. A nice dribble by Fielding opened up the way for Corr, but Eglington completely misjudged his attempt to reach Corr’s cross with his head. Stevenson’s through ball to Corr had the Bolton defence in trouble. Corr squared the ball for Juliussen to wheel round and drive in powerfully. Fortunately for Bolton Elvy was right in position to save confidently. Sagar was called into action to deal with a Barrass header from Moir’s lofted pass. Everton were quickly back on the attack again. Juliussen getting the better of Gillies and slipping the ball through for Corr to race in full speed, but Banks came across to turn the ball behind for a corner. The crowd showed their appreciation of Elvy’s cricket-like leap to take charge of Corr’s corner. Following a brief halt for repairs to Roberts, Everton should have taken the lead. Jones placed a free kick accurately, and Juliussen stabbed it down to offer a clear shooting opening to Stevenson. Despite the fact that he had two bites at the cherry “wee Alec” could not produce a worth-while shot. Lindley caused “heartburn” by dribbling back towards his own goal and as an indirect outcome of this Moir gained possession and almost beat Sagar with a low cross shot of no power which travelled across the face of the goal and a yard beyond the far post. Mistakes were frequent on both sides in a fast game in which Farrell was maintaining his recent improved form. Following a foul on Fielding Everton produced their best move of the game, only to fall again at the critical moment.
Centre Went Astray
Jones initiated the move by sending Fielding away, and from Fielding’s accurate down-the-middle pass, Stevenson switched the ball out to Eglington, but Eglington made a sorry mess of his intended centre. Two more corners in three minutes to Bolton were scrambled clear, and although the Everton defence more than once looked in dire trouble they managed to prevent Bolton finding a shooting avenue. Both Farrell and Moir were slightly dazed when their heads came together in midfield. After two full-blooded drives had been charged down by the packed Everton defence, Lindley also had to call for attention. Everton threw away another glorious chance when Juliussen pushed the ball through brilliantly to Corr. The winger ran in and blazed the ball widely over the top. When Juliussen was brought down on the edge of the penalty area, Jones flicked the free kick aside for Stevenson to let go powerfully, but Everton’s defensive packing enabled them to charge the ball down. Half-time; Everton 0, Bolton Wanderers 0.
On resuming there was another stoppage when Woodward fell awkwardly after a Hedley tackle. He was able to resume after treatment but was limping. The light was had but it was possible to see Juliussen transfer to Corr, and Stevenson connect with his head from Corr’s dangerous centre. Elvy fingered the ball away. Fielding tried a first-timer which had Elvy well beaten but the ball slewed narrowly wide of the far post. After Elvy had dealt more confidently with a close range Corr header. Bradley slipped the ball inside for McShane to try one on the turn, but it soared yards over the top. The Everton forwards contributed some progressive football but the all essential finish was lacking. The Bolton forwards were equally remiss in their direction and McShane’s final effort after Bradley and Barrass had done the leading-up work was woefully weak. A four point attacking move deserved far better reward than it received when Eglington’s smashing drive shaved the cross-bar. Within seconds Everton had equally fortuitous after Sagar had saved miraculously a smashing left-footer from McShane. From the corner Barrass headed strongly against the upright with Sagar helpless, the ball being scrambled clear. The game livened up and Elvy was again brought into action to deal with Stevenson’s grounder low down. It was still cut-and-thrust football with the ball flashing from one end to the other at break-neck pace. Everton did manage to get the ball into the net on one occasion, when Fielding lobbed it up-field for Stevenson to drive past Elvy, but Stevenson was clearly offside. Juliussen was again on the slow side, leaving his shot too late after Stevenson had opened up the way for him. Gillies racing across to charge down Juliussen’s drive. When Barrass for once got the better of a tackle with Jones it seemed certain that he would score, but Saunders took the ball off the Bolton leader’s foot. Inches denied Everton a goal when a Farrell-Stevenson link-up provided Juliussen with an opening. Elvy came out to narrow the angle, and Juliussen steered his shot inches wide of the post. Just afterwards he drove across the edge of the woodwork from close range. The light was so bad now that it was well nigh impossible to see what was happening in the Gwlady’s Street goal, which Everton were defending. With just one minute remaining Everton took the lead, Corr’s centre finding Eglington perfectly placed to head into the roof of the net as Elvy advanced. Final; Everton 1, Bolton Wanderers 0.
EVERTON SNATCH FULL POINTS IN LAST MINUTE
December 11, 1948. The Liverpool Football Echo
Eglington’s Goal Brightened A Gloomy Game
Corners Galore –Few Shots
Everton 1, Bolton Nil
Everton scarcely deserved to win, but an 89th minute goal, headed by Eglington from a Corr centre settled the issue. It was good football in bad conditions and both defences played so well they scarcely deserved to make any concession to two poor finishing attacks. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Hedley, backs; Lindley, Jones and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Corr, Stevenson, Juliussen, Fielding and Eglington, forwards. Bolton Wanderers;- Elvy, goal; Roberts and Banks (R.), backs; Howe, Gillies, and Murphy, half-backs; Woodward, Moir, Barass, Bradley, and McShane, forwards. Referee; Mr. J. H. Parker, (Macclesfield). It was a formidable sort of day blustering cold dull, and in almost every way unsuited to good football. Catterick’s injury meant that Juliussen went to centre forward and the grand old man of the party. Alex Stevenson (he is old in years and young in football ideas and their execution) came in for Bentham at inside right. Bolton-trainer “Nibbler” Ridding, formerly of Tranmere said “How do” to numbers of old friends behind his concrete dug-out. Everton had much advantage from winning the toss and kicking away from the park-end. The first incident of moment was a quickly taken right foot shot by Bradley, which skidded so far wide of Sagar’s goal that the goalkeeper scarcely needed to make a move for it. Eglington with a rip-roaring into the middle run, found Stevenson with a sharp pass and the little man moved the ball from one foot to the other before giving Corr his chance.
Corr after putting the ball back centred with his left foot and too strongly even for Eglington at the far post. The game’s best move was a Bolton left-wing one of great directness and when McShane centred and Sagar punched away, the ball went out to Woodward, who pulled it back with his left foot for Murphy to deliver a fierce shot just over the Everton crossbar. Bolton were very spirited, and there followed a veritable bombardment of the Everton goal with Sagar making a punch away when heavily charged by Barrass, and the Everton defence in general standing fast when things were pretty desperate. Everton benefited considerably by an offside decision against Woodward, when Saunders had this player on-side by a margin of yards.
Elvy’s Good Save
Bolton’s football was good; moreover it was a yard or two too fast for most of the Everton team. Gillies had so far had little difficulty in getting the better of Julliussen. Nearly all Bolton’s forward moves had been made down their left wing. From a throw-in Stevenson produced for Corr as tailor-made a pass as any winger could desire. Corr’s centre was all along the ground and somehow escaped a Bolton boot before arriving at Juliussen, who hit a nice shot on the half-turn and found the ball beautifully saved by Elvy.
A Surprise Packet
How Woodward contrived to lift over the high centre from which Barrass clearly out headed Jones and got much pace on the ball was something of a mystery, and Sagar must have been well satisfied to make a catch off this surprise packet. Elvy not only made a sure high catch from a Corr corner, he fell on the ball at a vital moment when Farrell flung it across goal and there was a danger of an Everton forward getting there first. Everton’s passing was not so accurate as Bolton’s, but both sides were badly handicapped by the way the ball drifted in the high wind.
Roberts got a knock in holding up Juliussen and a fast game was interrupted for the first time. Roberts soon recovered. A Jones free kick found Juliussen and a short pass to Stevenson standing close in was promising until Stevenson only half connected with his shot. The tall Elvy again came out bravely to fall on the ball to prevent the persistent Eglington picking up a goal for his pertinacity in following up. Bolton tackling was good and strong, and allowed Everton no time to dwell on the ball. The Bolton left-wing triangle deserved a goal, and nearly got one when Moir picked up Woodward’s final flick and rammed it only a foot or two wide of the far post as he was tackled.
The Bolton “Switch”
Bolton made more reverse passes in their forward line than in any side I have seen for years, and the half backs who picked them up used them with telling effect to switch the point of attack unexpectedly.
Burly Barrass N Action
The burly Barrass with a chest bulging against his thin while shirt was as lively a proposition in centre forward as we have seen for a long time. He carries the weight to do big things too. At this point a heavy drizzle made the ball skid even more disconcertingly. After Woodward and Fielding and Woodward and Hedley had got at cross purposes to some extent, Bradley spoke to the referee who seemed to command the Bolton forward to go about his business. A pity a lovely Bradley-Moir duet should finish with a Bradley shot high over the top. Bradley trying to turn the ball for a partner, nearly made a present of it for the Everton defence. Tom Jones above all could see through the effective quick-passing movements which had several other Everton defenders in trouble.
Sagar chasing to the edge of his penalty box to make a pass to Corr began the move which ended in Corr receiving a Juluissen pass and racing on to shoot high and wide. Just on half-time Juliussen avoided Gillies for once and was then fouled by Roberts a yard outside the penalty area. Tom Jones feinted to make a big shot and merely slewed the ball across to Stevenson, whose first shot was blocked away. Stevenson followed up and hooked the ball high up towards the goal angle, and Eglington was close to heading a goal.
Half-time; Everton 0, Bolton Wanderers 0.
Johnny Mcllhatton getting fit after his spell in hospital looked on and so did Norman Greenhalgh, who is out again after having a small bone removed from his leg. I understand that Pinchbeck is next on turn into hospital.
The Old Everton
For five minutes early in the second half it was the old Everton with one beautiful prolonged movement ending in Corr heading into the waiting arms of Elvy and another finishing ignominiously in Stevenson being caught rather too slow to find a shot. Moir who had been injured when Hedley tackled him severely, was now in his proper position after a short spell at outside right. After one of Bradley’s grand passes had opened the way Moir shot rather hastily from an angle over the Everton cross-bar. A beautifully direct Everton move after a similar Bolton one was all set for a goal by Eglington when the winger like most others in this match, got under his shot when only ten yards out.
Little McShane catching Saunders on the flat of his feet, went on to swerve the ball phenomenally in a grand shot and Sagar did well to put it round the post. From a corner Barrass headed against the inside of an upright, and the ball rebounded to be cleared. There were many more thrills now than in the first half, even if the football was hardly as good. The game certainty had found real life. Tom Jones, coming up for a Corr corner, was crowded out, but very nearly deflected Farrell’s return of the ball into the goalmouth after it had been half cleared.
Two struggling forward lines continued to make very little impression on two first-rate defences. There was not much striking force from the Everton inside three, although the approach work again was promising and practical. After a long interval Juliussen was seen to advantage when “dummying” an opening and going on to earn a corner when the ball had appeared to pass beyond his control for the purpose of shooting. Another corner on the other wing was the forerunner of a Jones header which drifted wide of the post. After Barrass had beaten Jones and had seemed well on the way to goal, Saunders came across him and took the ball away from him at the psychological moment.
Two More Misses
Farrell through a flick by Stevenson, and Juliussen was almost clean through, Elvy, fortunately for Bolton was out with commendable promptness and falling towards the ball it was hardly surprisingly he caused the Everton centre forward to shoot wide. Juliussen again shot wide on the turn a moment afterwards when everyone looked for a goal. Sagar caught a Moir volley with the utmost nonchalance. Tom Jones was again most valuable as the calm breaking point of many Bolton threats in the gloaming. Saunders, missing his kick from a right wing centre almost let in McShane but Jones rescued his side with a tackle.
A Joyful Goal
When everyone was resigned to the goallessness of this match Corr found himself on the goal line in the vicinity of the corner flag surrounded by Bolton defenders. Somehow he worked a channel for a left foot centre which was ideally placed for Eglington to nod a joyful goal at the 89th minute. The Everton players were hardly less wild in their joy than the crowd. Final; Everton 1, Bolton Wanderers 0.
BLACKPOOL RES V EVERTON RES
December 11 1948. The Liverpool Football Echo
Blackpool Res;- Robinson, goal; Garrett and Kennedy, backs; Hearn, Crosland, and Jones, half-backs; Hobson, McKnight, Gillfillan, Davidson, and Eastwood, forwards. Everton Res;- Burnett, goal; Moore and Dugdale, backs; Cameron, Falder, and Grant, half-backs; McCormick, Powell, Lello, Higgins and Parker, forwards. Referee; Mr. H.E. Lambert, Blackburn. Everton were soon prominent, Lello making good headway until Crosland nipped in and cleared. Blackpool were soon fighting back, however, and Burnett after conceding a corner ran yards from his goal to make a clearance and injured his hand. He recovered after attention. Hobson was prominent in Blackpool raids. Half-time; Blackpool Res 0, Everton Res 0. Blackpool went ahead five minutes after the restart. Gilfillan beat Burnett from close in with a drive into the roof of the net. Everton fought back and Lello was prominent with some clever thrusts down the middle. Twenty minutes from the end Powell put Everton level with a capital shot, well out of Robinson reach. Final; Blackpool Res 1, Everton Res 1.
Burscough v Everton “A”
Lewis gave Everton the lead after twenty two minutes, but four minutes later Bridge equalised from a pass by Buckley. Half-time; Burscough 1, Everton “A” 1. Full time; Burscough 2, Everton “A” 2
LINDLEY’S PART IN ‘THE GOAL’
December 13, 1948. The Liverpool Daily Post
By Ernest Edwards (“Bee”)
Everton 1, (Eglington), Bolton Wanderers 0.
A goal scored at the 89th minute brought Everton relief and two points; it brought something more. I think it re-created the lost shooting spirit of the attack because Eglington took his first goal this season and joined in the gilded framework that had been started weeks ago by confrere, Corr. The core of the goal was a well-judged centre by Corr, who, for weeks has been in the habit of flinging his centres without undue delay, but who now fell into the modern habit of holding up so long that his centres were taken by Gillies and a smart pair of backs. The goal, however, began a trifle earlier than this. Lindley provided an object lesson regarding the throw-in which comes almost at every minute of a game and is rarely used. Lindley pre-supposes that if he turns to his extreme left to feint to throw the ball to a defender the opposition will veer that way. Lindley proceeds to avider round and urge the ball towards a wing man. Time was passing all too quickly with a barren vineyard. Rain made the ball difficult to grip and Lindley’s effort to pick up at speed and make his throw ended in a misfire. A second throw was called for, Lindley realised he was nearer the corner flag, therefore his throw was more “pressing” Corr received the ball, jigged two paces against three defenders and centred temptingly for Eglington (by now near inside left) to head the ball beyond the clever Elvy. Bolton had one chance to equalise in the last seconds and it was than Sagar gathered the ball and deposited in into the safe keeping of his forwards.
I have gone into detail over this treasured goal because it meant so much and the seeds of goal-scoring must have attention if Everton are to improve upon these one-goal verdicts –a verdict that did scant justice to Bolton when one compared the rival attacks. Bolton were smooth subtle and practical. Barras came into all his attack’s progress. Juliussen, who made the most telling shots, was a lost sheep for nearly an hour and in the way the home side attacked appeared to ignore the central avenue. I was sorry for Juliussen because Everton’s raging raids rarely offered him what he offered his comrades –a sight of the ball and on the turf so that it could be taken easily. A bright feature of Everton’s victory was Eglington’s first half work which included many well placed cross-field passes, to Corr to counteract the wisdom of Bradley’s passes of the nature to his oppose wing man. Farrell had quite his best game this season, I am happy to record. There should be more destruction of opposing defences with Stevenson and Fielding doing so much initiatory spade work in their own delicate and capable manner. The truth is the forward line does not blend and there is a weakness in their method that undoes all the individual good served up by each member. While the defence has been looked by Manager Britton the forward fashion parades much effort and showiness without the linking together by which defences can be torn apart. However two points at the closing moments where none had seemed possible, will be welcomed by all concerned –and how concerned the Everton spectators has been for months.
An Upright Save
Bolton’s boy back Banks, who graduated at the splendid school of instruction South Liverpool F.C, is a rugged typical Bolton type and he was but one part of a well-knit side that could not find places for stars such as Lofthouse and Hernon. How happy could other clubs be with either, or both. Bolton have good wingers and nice poetry of attacking motion. Moir’s injury appears to take the tingle out of their attack and Bolton could also claim they made Sagar produce another stupendous save from the left flank, the corner which followed producing a header on to the upright.
• Everton “B” 2, Liverpool “B” 1
December 11, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
“The encouraging point arising from Everton’s last-minute victory over Bolton, writes Radar, “was he certainty that Peter Farrell is rapidly approaching his best international form. In the second half in particularly, we saw something of the Farrell in the last two seasons, inspiring by the reliance of his constructive work and the compelling power of those characteristic of his screw runs. With such effective promising from behind, Eglington and Fielding had to revel late no, Eglington giving the display I have seen from him for some time. There was still not that essential deadliness and confidence in Everton’s finishing, but the forwards contributed top-class attacking and ball in the second half which was as attractive as the first was uninspiring. Stevenson seemed to pull out that extra yard and his inside link up with Fielding always promised something tangible. Corr’s centre which led to the goal was a splendid example of quick thinking and accuracy. Everton’s defensive set-up could not be faulted with Jones a masterful in-the-middle bulwark. Saunders and Hedley were right on top of the work so much that Sagar did not have a really busy match apart from one fine save from McShane.”
December 13, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
There is a vast difference between 5-0 defeats and 1-0 victories, as Everton are exampling in the best of ways (writes Contact). It must be admitted that a goal, like Eglington’s in the 89th minute, is leaving it late to say the least, but time means nothing when two points are credited to a total which has grown satisfactorily since the days when the club was suffering its leanest-spell. Bolton provided rather more of the better things of the game in the first half, but the improving Everton matched much of their work in a likely second half, in which Sagar having saved magnificently the swerving McShane shot, looked on while a Barrass header struck the upright. The Everton defence may not have been so sure as it has been recently, but the side as a whole played better football and gave promise that their few successes are not lost on them. There seems to be a reawakened confidence.
Everton have been draw to Manchester City for the F.A. Cup Round Three to be played at Goodison Park on January 1, 1949.
SPECIAL CUP TRAINING?
December 14, 1948, The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
The question of whether Everton will undergo special training for the F.A. Cup third round tie with Manchester City will be decided, after Manager Cliff Britton has taken the players into his confidence. When I discussed the training question with Mr. Britton he replied “It has its advantages and disadvantages, and so far as we are concerned I shall be swayed by the attitude of the players themselves. Sometimes the change of food and environment is upsetting but on the other had going away for special preparation does promote the party spirit.
December 14, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
The Everton tie, we shall have plenty of opportunity to weigh up their opponents over the holiday, as the Blues and Manchester City meet at Goodison on Christmas Day and at Maine Road on Boxing on Boxing Day. Latest report on the chief invalids are that Pinchbeck went into hospital yesterday for an operation following injury to a tendon of the left ankle. He is likely to be off several weeks. Mcllhatton started training –again today. Wainwright who has made a very quick recovery from his appendicitis operation hopes to resume light training next week. Catterick’s resumption depends on the doctor’s report, which the club will have later today.
EVERTON AT NEWCASTLE
December 17, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton hit the long trail to Tyneside, taking the players who defeated Bolton Wanderers last Saturday and with a side having renewed confidence and excellent team spirit. Everton’s record of late is such that they need not fear the exalted Newcastle, whose defence can be drawn out of position by considered attacking methods. Everton have yet to draw away, and I have a feeling that such a result will make this into a happy journey. Everton with more striking power would please me immensely. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Hedley; Lindley, Jones, Farrell; Corr, Stevenson, Juliussen, Fielding, Eglington.
• Everton Res v. West Bromwich Res, at Goodison Park
• Everton “A” v. St. Helens Town, at Bellefield
• Everton “C” v. Florence Melly B.C at Bellefied
BIGGER GAP NEEDED
December 17, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Despite having gained ten points out of the last fourteen played for and forfeited only four goals in these seven engagements. Everton’s position in the table still demands continued effort. While their outlook, which two months ago looked pretty hopeless is considerably brighter, the leeway separating them from the clubs below is still very small. Manager Cliff Britton will not breathe really easily until the gap has been further increased. Normally, their visit to Newcastle United tomorrow could hardly be regarded at the avenue of even a consolatory point, after Huddersfield’s victory at St. James’s Park we cannot entirely write off the Blues chances, slender though they seem. Newcastle’s home escutcheon has another blot, when Preston North End beat them 5-2. The Magpies seem occasionally vulnerable to lowly sides, and as ill-luck usually goes by threesomes, maybe Everton will provide the surprise of the day though it looks extremely unlikely. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Hedley; Lindley, Jones, Farrell; Corr, Stevenson, Juliussen, Fielding, Eglington.
EVERTON DEFENCE TAKES THE DAY’S HONOURS
December 18, 1948. The Liverpool Football Echo
Juliussen’s Injury A heavy Handicap
But Chances Were Missed
Newcastle 1, Everton 0
Everton, having won recent matches by a solitary goal, now had to suffer this tantalising form of defeat. Juliussen was a passenger for more than three-parts of the game, but the Everton defence was so sound in its covering up the margin was kept to one. The attack is criticised on several counts – failure to take easy chances, the desire to shoot when the angle was bad and the obvious desire to shift shooting responsibility on to other shoulders. It was far from a great match, but Tom Jones’s brilliance stood out like a beacon. Newcastle Utd;- Fairbrother, goal; Powell and Batty, backs; Harvey, Brennan, and Dodgin, half-backs; Stobbart, Gibson, Milburn, Taylor and Hair, forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Hedley, backs; Lindley, Jones and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Corr, Stevenson, Juliussen, Fielding and Eglington, forwards. Referee; Mr. A.E. Ellis (Halifax). Former Everton full back Jack O’Donnell came to see the Everton players at Newcastle, and the other former Everton link is, of course, the fact that Newcastle United are managed by George Martin. Conditions were so dull and misty there was a danger that the match would not go the full 90 minutes. Everton played the side which beat Bolton Wanderers at Goodison Park. The first incident, a long through pass to Stevenson, who had drifted up field with a fine sense of anticipation, caused the Newcastle defence to cover and overcrowd the little man as he attempted to bring the ball under control.
Milburn going to outside right turned the ball back nearly for Harvey to make a centre from which Sagar had to move quickly to a header by Gibson. Then Milburn, with a shot from far out, caused Sagar to pat the ball down nervously before going on to complete the clearance. Milburn was shooting persistently, and from all angles, and having one left-foot shot blocked away, he hit the ball promptly as it rebounded to him and Sagar had to make a good and unexpected save for a corner.
Taylor was having a splendid match, and when he poked the ball out to his partner, there was a good length centre to the head of Gibson, and Sagar going down to this, was embarrassed by the similar intent of one of his full backs. The game was stopped while Juliussen received attention for what appeared to be a blow to the knee. Newcastle so far were not only on top, but so quick that Everton’s defence must have been rather shaken by the sheer speed. Juliussen had to go to the touch-line and meantime Corr acted as centre forward with Stevenson on the wing. Tom Jones’s head had already done yeoman service against Milburn. Quite the best thing Everton did was by Stevenson who collected the ball in midfield, beat his man and then turned the ball inwards and went straight for goal before half hit his shot which Fairbrother picked up without effort.
Everton’s next movement was nearly perfect. Eglington had a part in it, and so did Fielding, who started it by doing a downward header to the spit second. Finally Eglington’s pass to Stevenson let Alec to go on and make his shot which was deflected by the head of Batty and curled dangerously near the bar before Fairbrother could get his hands to it. Juliussen returned to go outside left, with Eglington inside, Corr at centre forward, and Fielding at inside right.
Crowding Them Out
It was not a very distinguished match, but Everton defence was earning its corn by some spirited covering-up. There were few Everton attacks, but some had promise which was not, fulfilled. Juliussen being able to little other than hobble. Fielding made one useful shot just over the goal angle, but for the most part the tall Newcastle half backs, won possession and set up Newcastle attacks which broke down on Everton’s system of crowning the penalty box. Lindley’s tackling was good, and considering they were handicapped, some of the Everton attacks were first rate. A long Stevenson centre nearly produced a goal for Juliussen who contrived to get up as Fairbrother closed fist. Everton’s shooting was as indifferent as that of Newcastle and the game was dull to watch.
Half-time; Newcastle United 0, Everton 0.
Lindley made a blunder at the corner of the penalty box, and the mistake might well have cost his side a goal. Corr made a faulty pass to Stevenson after that player had found him perfectly and the way to goal had been opened up. Everton had a surprisingly good innings considering Juliussen was almost a complete passenger. Stevenson with a long centre from the line caused Fairbrother to make a catch high up near the angle. Fifty minutes had gone when Tom Jones side foot it the ball away with safety-first measures when standing ten yards out of goal, and Taylor returning it promptly with acute shot gave Newcastle the lead. Everton should have equalised in the next minute, but Eglington trying to hit a Stevenson centre when standing all alone not more than five yards out, could do no better than get right under the ball and put it yards over the bar.
Hedley was having a particularly good match, despite the tremendous strain the defence was under. Indeed, the Everton defence as a whole was as good as it has been in recent weeks. Newcastle had Gibson at outside right, but he was far from being a passenger, Sagar had to move quickly out to Milburn after the Newcastle centre forward had for once rounded Jones. The small Everton forwards were always at a disadvantage with the ball in the air, and when things were going well for them in a few of their moves their passing close up to goal was too hasty to be accurate.
Fielding’s Missed Chance
In a light which had improved considerably a long through pass by Stevenson to Fielding simply asked for a shot, but after taking the ball to within ten yards of goal, Fielding turned it in to try and make it a certainty and ruined the chance. Newcastle were very much in the picture now, all up, with the Everton defence harder pressed even than in the first half. They stood up to it extraordinarily well. Final; Newcastle United 1, Everton 0.
EVERTON RES V. WEST BROM RES
December 18, 1948. The Liverpool Football Echo
Play was at a fast pace, both ends being visited in rapid succession. The Everton goal had a narrow escape when Burnett brought off a great save from Morrow at the expense of a fruitless corner. Everton were now the superior side. Mcllhatton doing excellent work on the right, but his centres were not taken advantage of. Half-time; Everton Res 0, West Brom Res 0.
On account of the bad visibility, the teams changed round immediately and within two minutes Lewis, with an accurate shot, gave Everton the lead. The Blues were now enjoying much the better of the play, and it was not surprising that Lewis again found the net to increase the home lead. The visitors seldom got away and when they did Burnett in the Everton goal was quite capable of dealing with any shot. Final; Everton Reserves 2, West Bromwich Res 0.
EVERTON BEATEN BY A LONE GOAL
December 18, 1948. Evening Express
Blues’ Ill-Luck In The Centre Continues
Juliussen First Half Injury Sends Him On To The Wing
Disorganised by a first-half injury to Juliussen, Everton made a brave but unavailing fight against Newcastle United, who won 1-0, at St. James Park. Juliussen was little more than a passenger after he had hurt his leg with the game 30 minutes old, and the galliant Everton defence, with Tommy Jones, as always, the inspiration, did well to hold Newcastle to the goal scored by Taylor in the 50th minute. Everton, fielded the team that defeated Bolton Wanderers. Newcastle Utd;- Fairbrother, goal; Powell and Batty, backs; Harvey, Brennan, and Dodgin, half-backs; Stobbart, Gibson, Milburn, Taylor and Hair, forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Hedley, backs; Lindley, Jones and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Corr, Stevenson, Juliussen, Fielding and Eglington, forwards. Referee; Mr. A.E. Ellis (Halifax). In a quiet opening Milburn ended Newcastle’s preliminary skirmish by slashing a long range drive wide of the post. When Stevenson raced through to a long upfield pass he was crowded out be weight of numbers. Eglington eventually gained possession but dropped his centre on the goal-netting. Grand constructive work by Farrell enabled Juliussen to send Eglington away, and the Irishman’s rare turn of speed in possession clearly surprised Powell. Fielding just failed to connect with Eglington’s nicely-placed cross, and although Corr did manage to push the ball into the middle again Brennan was on the spot to clear without difficulty. Neat co-operation between Gibson and Milburn roused the 45,000 spectators but Sagar dealt easily with Gibson’s rather tentative header. Sagar was much more sternly tested a few seconds later when Milburn drove in fiercely from 18 yards. United were warming to their work and Sagar took no chances when he went full length to turn another Milburn left-footer round the post. From the corner the Everton goal escaped fortuitously as Gibson headed in and Sagar and Jones were involved in a misunderstanding. Finally the ball was scrambled clear rather by luck than by good management. The first stoppage came when Juliussen had to call for repairs to a leg injury and had to be helped to the line by trainer Harry Cook.
Well Planned Attacks
The sporting crowd showed their appreciation of a splendid run by wee Alex Stevenson, who rounded Dodgin and raced on to deliver a sharp grounder. Fairbrother had to go down quickly to deal with this one. Everton’s forwards were producing their share of well planned attacks and the best move of the game so far saw Fielding and Eglington link up effectively. Eglington who had cut into the middle, slipped the ball out to Stevenson who fired in a great rising drive. Left back Batty came dangerously near deflecting the ball out of Fairbrother’s reach for the Newcastle keeper was moving in the opposite direction. By an uncanny backwards leap Fairbrother managed to turn the ball over the bar. Newcatsle’s Taylor trickled three Everton defenders before shooting from 18 yards but the ball slewed wide of the upright. Juliussen had now returned to take over at outside-left with Corr at centre-forward, Stevenson on the right-wing and Eglington at inside left. Fielding was responsible for brilliant creative work in another dangerous Everton raid, but with Corr allowing Fielding’s pass to by-pass him, Juliussen might have done better than swerve his drive wide of the post. Newcastle were in an attacking vein, but found Tommy Jones and company defending solidly, and the only United likely scoring efforts were long-rangers from half-backs Harvey and Dodgin, which, however, carried too much loft. A free kick for a foul on Taylor by Saunders looked awkward for Everton but Saunders made amends with a brilliantly headed clearance. It was unfortunate for Everton that Juliussen’s injury had caused a rearrangement of the attack as the front line had up to that point been moving with promise, though still lacking the essential fire in rounding off their work. Yet another Fielding prompted attack fell down because Juliussen could not produce that extra yard of speed, though there was, an excuse for the Everton player. United had been surprisingly quiet for a long spell then Sagar was brought into action to deal with Stobbart’s first-timer near the foot of the post. There were prospects of an Everton goal when Fielding went away to take Stevenson’s return pass in his stride but his powerful angled drive flashed over the woodwork. Everton came again and Fairbrother only just managed to flick the ball off Juliussen head following a further Fielding-Stevenson duel.
Half-time; Newcastle United 0, Everton 0.
After Ted’s Autograph
The Everton players were kept waiting for some times before Newcastle and the officials resumed after the interval and two youthful autograph hunters took the opportunity to race on to the field and secure Ted Sagar’s autograph. Newcastle quickly made their presence felt when they did arrive; Hair and Taylor took advantage of Lindley’s hesitancy to pair off cleverly. Sagar was perfectly positioned to save Hair’s oblique shot from close in, however. It was Fielding who eventually gained possession to ease the United pressure and his diagonal pass to Stevenson saw Alec level a deceptive centre-cum-shot-to which Fairbrother had to go up high to pull the ball down near the angle of the woodwork. In the 50th minute, however, Newcastle went away to take the lead through Taylor, who took over from Hair after Jones had failed to complete his clearance and gave Sagar no chance with a fast drive all along the ground. Straight away Everton should have drawn level, for Stevenson completely hoodwinked the United defence with his square pass from the line. Eglington had nothing to do but to tap the ball home, but to his own and everybody else’s astonishment he hooked it yards over the bar. Everton made poor use of a free kick when business-like referee Ellis was on the spot to see Dodgin bring down the ball with his hand. Jones placed the ball nicely for Stevenson to run on to, but Stevenson failed to anticipate Jones’ idea and did not move. With only four forward units operating effectively the Everton attack was being well held, but the defence was doing its job magnificently. The best effort for some time saw Stevenson and Fielding puzzle the United left flank and it was lucky for Newcastle that Brennan nipped in to prevent Fielding’s short pass finding the in running Corr. Juliussen had now switched to the right wing and Eglington back to his normal position. Fielding, at inside left, pushed a beautiful ball through to Juliussen but it was not Albert’s lucky day for he hooked his drive over the top. Final; Newcastle United 1, Everton 0.
EVERTON RES V WEST BROM RES
December 18, 1948. The Evening Express
The game opened at a brisk pace. The Albion were the more dangerous. Everton made several raids, Mcllhatton doing excellent work on the right. The Everton keeper brought off a clever save from Morrow at the expense of a fruitless corner. Erractic shooting nullified Everton chances. Half-time; Everton Res 0, West Bromwich Res 0.
Lewis gave Everton the lead with a cross shot, and eight minutes later he got a second. Final; Everton Res 2, West Bromwich Res 0.
• Everton “A” 4, St. Helens Town 2
• Everton “C” 5, Litherland R and T.A 2
THIS, FOR EVERTON, WAS MOST TANTALISING
December 20, 1948. The Liverpool Daily Post
By Leslie Edwards
Newcastle United 1, Everton 0
Newcastle United’s 50,000, awaiting the sign of a Milburn goal in this match, might well have sung “Hell be comin’ round the mountain when he comes,” because it soon became obvious that if Milburn were to succeed, it would only be after rounding the mountain of football obstruction which is Tom Jones. Three times these players have met in football duels this season; three times Milburn has walked off with the frustrated air on an England centre forward who has almost begun to write his name on the score card but has never been quite able to complete the autograph. Doubly ironic, therefore, that Jones of all people should be concerned in the goal by which much of his side’s great endeavour went for nothing. Fifty minutes had gone, and Everton, handicapped by Juliussen’s knee, knock mid-way through the first half, were fighting gamely when Jones, in that characteristic safely-first way, side-footed (inside, right foot) the ball away to a spot from which one sensed no particularly danger. Sagar could look with confidence at a ball so far out, but when Taylor using the time element of surprise, hit it back sweet and low, there, in bright array, was the only opportunist goal of the day.
United by virtue of this latest victory lead the league; yet one can still suggest that it was an anything but virtuous performance. They do not look like champions. Much of the glamour of going top must have been lost in the sobering realisation that they only just managed to beat a ten men Everton (Juliussen was hardly a good hobbler at outside right), and more important, an Everton which totally failed with a least two absurdly easy chances. Eglington drifting in fast to a Stevenson pass, stood not more than five yards from goal, and mistimed his shot so badly it soared yards over the bar. Fielding bringing the ball in from the right, took it almost up to the post and then turned it backward and inside, and only a Newcastle stud scrape took it away from a foot which could have converted it. Juliussen, late on, in almost exactly the same spot, decided to shoot while Corr stood there all alone in front of goal. Fairbrother going one way to a Stevenson shot, and finding it deflected by Batty’s head, changed direction in a flash to collar the ball high up near the angle in the game’s early moments.
Everton’s approach work, even with only four up, was often so good it was a shame they used their hard-won chances so poorly. Corr, mostly at centre-forward, Stevenson mainly at outside and inside-right, and Fielding did so much spade work the failure was most tantalising. Newcastle were not so smooth moving as they had been against Liverpool. The prefabricated Everton defence – the basis for much of their work is done beforehand –covered up effectively, if sometimes desperately, and apart from Jones, who was superb, Hedley had a particularly good match. As a unit the defence is good enough by any standards as results in the last seven matches show.
EVERTON’S CENTRE INJURIES
December 20, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Everton’s ill-luck with injured centre forwards continues, but, happily Juliussen’s knock at Newcastle is not as severe as at first thought, though it is too early yet to say whether he will be fit for the holiday games. Catterick resumes light training tomorrow, and hopes to be ready by the week-end. Pinchbeck is still in hospital after his ankle operation (writes Contact). Newcastle United, now top of the chart, won this match 1-0 against a side which not only had only ten men for the greater part of the match, but one which missed at least two of the easiest of chances. The gods do no forgive and a match which could have been saved, or even won, was lost to a Taylor goal at fifty minutes. Tom Jones, nothing less than superb in the way he took charge of forwards of international repute, happened to be the unwitting start of the goal, but he more than counter balanced this semblance of mistakes (if it was a mistake by his generalship at moments of stress, and the sure way he did his work. I may be wrong but it seemed to me that the reemployed forward line made the mistake of shooting when the pass was better policy and passing when a shot would have been more profitable, but it is all a question of angles. Maybe Fielding’s was too fine when he turned the ball inside and maybe Julliussen decision to shoot late in the game was the right one. More and more I it made evident that Everton’s defence had fallen happily into the system which has been devised to stop the flow of goals against them. The attack, functioning half-cock, made some grand moves which lacked only the striking power near goal. They cannot afford to do so much and get so little reward in football which above all, is unforgiving.
December 20, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
“Everton’s defeat provided more than its fair share of exasperating moments from a Merseyside point of view for despite the forward line line re-organisation enforced by Juliussen’s injury this was a game which Everton should have won. Up to the time Juliussen had to go outside left the forwards, with Fielding and Stevenson in their brightest mood, had provided well-planned progressive football. Even afterwards Everton were a threatening force until it came to striking power. That all-essential finish was lacking, and the worst miss of all had Eglington as the offender. Immediately after Taylor’s 50th minute goal. Stevenson made a glorious square pass which offered Eglington the easiest of chances. Eglington somehow lofted it, and he could not explain himself later how he came to do it. But there were other misses as well, and in the closing minutes opportunities were thrown away when there should have been no shadow of doubt. Credit must go to the Toffees for a brave fight against a Newcastle looking far removed from potential champions, and whose close passing played into the hands of an Everton defence which rarely made a mistake. It was a tragedy for Tommy Jones that his one error in an inspired display should have given Taylor his goal chance. Jones was simply magnificent and the same goes for Sagar, Saunders and Hedley. “Farrell and Lindley, too, gained honours for determined defensive work, and the forwards tried several switches with Corr working hard during his spell at centre-forward. Everton really must do something about their shooting.”
CENTRE FORWARD PROBLEM
December 22, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Faces The Everton Manager
Everton have had their full share of injuries this season, and the inability of Juliussen to play over the Christmas holidays is a big blow, for Catterick is not yet fit and Pinchbeck is still in hospital. To be deprived of a centre forward at this period of the season with its spate of matches is a heavy blow, and how Manager Cliff Britton is going to treat the matter I cannot say. The team to meet Manchester City at Goodison Park will not be selected until later in the week. The reserve team leader Lewis, has from all accounts being playing exceedingly well, so well, in fact, that many people have told me that he is ripe for the senior side. It is one thing to play in the Central League side, another to jump into the senior eleven, and whether Mr. Britton thinks the moment opportune to bring in this young man I cannot say. Mayor Buckley would have no qualms about introducing a youngster into the team, for he is great believer in youth. Johnnie Hart, 20-year-old inside right from Golborne, will make his first appearance of the season in the Manchester City side at Goodison Park on Christmas Day. He takes the place of Black, who is injured. Team; Swift; Williams, Westwood; Walsh, Fagan, Emptage, Oakes, Hart, Smith, Linacre, Clarke.
EVERTON WILL NOT BID AGAIN
December 23, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
“We shall not reopen negotiations for Mannion’s signature, said Manager Cliff Britton of Everton, when I asked him this morning how Oldham’s failure to raise the £25,000 fee demanded by Middlesbrough would affect the Goodison Club. With Wainwright now back in training and likely to be thoroughly fit in time for the Cup tie with Manchester City. Everton are more hopeful of remedying their attacking problems than they have been for some time past. Next move in the Mannion serial will be in the first instance between the player and Middlesbrough. Will he be willing to go elsewhere than Oldham? Will he pursue his determination to get the fee down to the £15,000 which Oldham can raise? Besides Everton senior clubs which at various times have been in the Mannion queue include Arsenal, Burnley, Preston, Stoke, Glasgow Celtic and others. With some of these also, interest has since evaporated.
Everton have solved their present centre forward problem by bringing in Lello as leader of the attack. There is also a change in the middle line where Bentham comes in for Lindley. Team; Sagar; Saunders, Hedley; Bentham, Jones, Farrell; Corr, Bentham, Stevenson, Lello, Fielding, and Eglington.
The Reserve team at Maine Road at Manchester is; Burnett; Moore, Clinton; Cameron, Falder; Walton, Mcllhatton, Powell, Lewis, Doyle, McCormick. Pinchbeck was discharged from hospital this morning.
VITAL CHRISTMAS GAMES
December 24, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton open the pageant by receiving Manchester City at Goodison Park, tomorrow, which will be continued at Maine-road on Monday. We have the clash of two sides managed by former Everton wing half-backs –Cliff Britton and Jock Thomson –and what is more to the point, tomorrow’s game will be a “dress rehearsal” of the F.A. Cup-tie between the clubs at the same ground on January 8. Everton have tightened up their defence magnificently and I feel confident that once their forwards can learn to cash-in on the scoring positions they are winning by their skill, they will win far more games than they lose. Everton play Cyril Lello at centre-forward this original position with Shrewsbury, while Stan Bentham returns to right-ball. Everton Reserves are at Maine-road tomorrow and City Reserves visit Goodison Park on Monday. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Hedley; Bentham, Jones, Farrell; Corr, Bentham, Stevenson, Lello, Fielding, and Eglington.
EVERTON’S STIFF TESTS
December 24, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Everton’s home game with Manchester City tomorrow has double interest for, in addition to the Blues’ chance of registering their fifth successive home victory. It will give followers a chance of estimating Everton’s prospects when the pair meet again in a fortnight’s time, also –at Goodison Park, in the third round Cup-tie. The Blues have had only five goals put past Sagar in their last eight home outings and but a single one in the last four. Manchester City’s away record is not particularly impressive but they are a strong home team, so that if Everton take two points from the two games they won’t do so badly. Three would be a nice Yuleside present for Manager Cliff Britton. Sagar; Saunders, Hedley; Bentham, Jones, Farrell; Corr, Bentham, Stevenson, Lello, Fielding, and Eglington.
December 28, 1948. The Liverpool Daily Post
Came near Win
Manchester City 0, Everton 0
It would not be fair to be hypercritical over the game at Maine Road yesterday. The pitch was nothing more or less than an ice-rink, and most mistakes had to be forgiven. The football of both sides was uncommonly good, and the crowd must have been well satisfied. The only thing short was a goal. Neither set of forwards could provide one following really good approach work, writes Stork. City were the better side in the first half, but the tables were turned when Everton were slightly the superior in the second period. Everton seemed the more likely to score. They might have sneaked both points when a Mcllhatton shot late on was deflected. It seemed to me that the ball was booked for the back of the net until it hit a defender’s legs, Swift was at the other side of the goal. Eglington also had two shots of merit but in the main the defences were in charge. Everton’s was particularly sound when the City were doing their best work. Hedley has rarely played better, and Sagar did all he had to do with his customary skill. Saunders and Lindley looked after the City’s most dangerous wing, Linacre and Clarke. Jones of course, was Jones –sufficient in itself! There is definitely an improvement in the Everton team. Apart from their tightly packed defence, the forwards are showing better cohesion, with Fielding standing out. Manchester City; Swift, goal; Williams and Westwood, backs; Walsh, Fagan and Emptage, half-backs; Oakes, Hart, Smith, Linacre, and Clarke, forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Hedley, backs; Lindley, Jones and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Mcllhatton, Powell, Higgins, Fielding and Eglington, forwards.
EVERTON 0, MANCHESTER CITY 0
December 28, 1948. The Liverpool Daily Post
The 45,000 spectators who went to Goodison Park on Christmas Day for the Everton –Manchester City match had little to compensates them for braving the cheerless conditions. They were few thrills and little exhilarating football. Most of the best moves were supplied by the city attack. Left-wing pair, Clarke and Linacre combined well and Smith and Hart were trustful and quick-thinking. Everton opened promisingly and afterwards Swift, in the City goal was not in trouble except neat the end when Everton staged a revival near the end, when a long shot which Swift was glad to see go wide of the angle. The Everton defence played well, with Jones a model centre-half under pressure, and Sagar outstanding. The home forwards however were disjointed and, when they did join in raids on the City goal, their were find to be faulty. Lello tried hard at centre forward but rarely overcame Walsh and Corr was nearby always mastered by Westwood, one of City’s best defenders. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Hedley, backs; Bentham, Jones and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Corr, Stevenson, Lello, Fielding and Eglington, forwards. Manchester City; Swift, goal; Williams and Westwood, backs; Walsh, Fagan and Emptage, half-backs; Oakes, Hart, Smith, Linacre and Clarke, forwards.
• Everton Reserves 1, Manchester City Reserves 0
• Manchester City Reserves 2, Everton Reserves 1
• St Helen’s 2, Everton “B” 2, Christmas Day
THREE HOURS –NO GOALS
December 28, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
Manchester City and Everton having battled for three hours with nary a goal to show for their endeavours, indicates that their Cup-tie on Saturday week may be a Marathon affair. There is no denying they are well matched and the team to score the first goal is the one likely to go forward to the next round. If only the Goodison forwards could score a goal or two I think we would see a different Everton (writes Stork). Maine Road was an ice rink, conditions which were all against accurate football, yet both sides produced rounds of passing that few thought possible. The City took the honours of the first half by their clever passing, but the reverse was the case in the second “45” and with the slightest bit of luck Everton would have won, for they were more likely scorers with the City defence inclined to panic under pressure. Mcllhahtton could not have selected a worse day for his reunion with the first team following his cartilage operation “yet” he nearly produced the winner. His terrific drive near the end was sailing merily for the back of the net when it struck a defenders legs and was deflected away from goal. Everton’s covering tactics have checked opponent’s goal rush and I don’t think Hedley has ever played better. He rendered Oakes important and Saunders against the City’s best wing –Linacre and Clarke – had a grand match, Smith was plotted out by Jones. Of the forwards I should say Fielding was best but Powell put plenty of heart into his play and made some fine openings. Higgins kept the City defenders on the move, but until more shocking is, forthcoming from the attack. Everton are going to become a defensive force and nothing more. Nevertheless it was a valuable point they picked up.
GOAL A POINT
December 28, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
These recent results yet again emphasise Everton’s need for punch in attack, for every goal they have scored in the eight games represents a point. Against the City at Goodison on Saturday Everton gave little promise of a goal after the opening minutes. In fact, Frank Swift had not one shot to deal with on the target. The story was carried on again at Maine-Road, yesterday, where Mcllhatton. Powell and Higgins came into the attack, but until the later stages the City had the better of the argument only to find Tommy Jones, Ted Sagar, Jack Hedley and George Saunders in defiant mood. Everton became inspired by their defence and in the end, says colleague “J.A.R,” were unfortunate not to win, for Eglington struck the bar and hit a shot which came back off the legs of Swift. In the dying seconds a winner from Mcllhatton struck a defender and ran to safely. My colleague’s summary of the game is: “The forwards lacked striking power and most of the danger came from the Fielding-Eglington wing, for Westwood blotted out the right flank. Fielding easily was the pick. Lindley and Saunders dovetailed well in defence, but the mighty men were Jones and Hedley. I have never seen Hedley play better. It was grand football by both teams up to the penalty area, but then it faded out.” These two draws increase Everton’s hope of an early league rise and cup progress.
MIDDLESBROUGH AT GOODISON
December 31, 1948. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Middlesbrough come to Goodison with a chance of being the second club of the season to complete the “double” over the Blues. Everton are slowly, but surely slipping away from the worrying positions thanks to their magnificent defensive make-up –a combination which has given away only three goals in their last seven matches –and I fancy they will open 1949 with a win. Blenkinsopp, the former Grimsby forward and half-back, plays at left back for Borough-Hardwich is injured –and Rickably is at inside left. Peter Corr, and Alex Stevenson return to Everton’s right wing and Higgins continues as leader in what should prove a high-class game, starting at 2.30 p.m. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Hedley; Lindley, Jones, Farrell; Corr, Stevenson, Higgins, Fielding, Eglington. Middlesbrough; Ugolini; Blenkinsopp, Robinson; Bell, Whitaker, Gordon; Spuhler, Dobbie, Fenton, Rickaby, Walker.
VITAL GOODISON GAME
December 31, 1948. The Liverpool Echo
If past records are any criterion, Everton stand a good chance of ushering in the New Year favourably by getting both points from Middlesbrough, for Goodison Park has always been a “bogey” ground for the Aryesome Park side. One of thirty Football league games between them at Goodison, Everton have been victorious on twenty-two occasions, six have been drawn, and only twice have Middlesbrough taken full toll. Their wins were in 1936-37 and 1914-15, each to the odd goal of five. Tomorrow’s game is among the most vital ever played between the pair, for both badly need the points in their anti-relegation struggle. But whereas Everton lately have been showing improved form, taking 12 points from their last ten games, Middlesbrough have been slipping back after a pretty fair start, and have gathered only 5 out of the last 18 points at stake. Borough’s away record is nearly as bad as Everton’s. They have but one solitary victory and two draws to their credit, and in twelve away encounters have scored only four goals – three of which were in one game, when they surprisingly defeated Wolverhampton at Molyneux. The obvious weakness of both sides is in attack. Everton’s front line has scored but one goal in the last five matches and the valuable points which have accrued during the past two months have been largely due to the brilliant defensive work of Sagar, Jones and the rest of the rearguard. More punch and marksmanship from the forwards is a vital requisite. The defence cannot continue indefinitely to bear the brunt of the burden. With Middlesbrough having to field a rearranged rearguard owing to Hardwick’s injury, Everton may find this the opportunity to remedy the monotonous appearance of “0” in their goals for column. But they will have to shoot hard and often to overcome Ugolini a brilliant agile and capable goalkeeper. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Hedley; Lindley, Jones, Farrell; Corr, Stevenson, Higgins, Fielding, Eglington. Middlesbrough; Ugolini; Blenkinsopp, Robinson; Bell, Whitaker, Gordon; Spuhler, Dobbie, Fenton, Rickaby, Walker.