MarBLUES’ VITAL GAME
March 1, 1946. The Evening Express
Whether the crowd at Goodison beats the recent 60,000 odd for the Liverton derby last December depends largely on the weather. Newcastle have always been an attractive side, despite their fall to the second Division. This season their performances have added further lustre to an honoured name in Soccer annuals. The modern Newcastle eleven doesn’t bring as many familiar faces, but the old Novocastrian skill and talent is there. Up to last week Tyneside folk reckoned United were the best side in the country. They revised that view after seeing Everton, of whom they were loud in their praises. What Everton did at St. James’s Park should not be beyond them at Goodison –on paper. It may or may not work out that way. One thing that is certain is that we shall see a great game of football, played by two talented sides. Every point now is vital to Everton in their championship bid. This time they may find Newcastle is tougher proposition, for his visitors having learned the folly of putting all their eggs into the Stubbins basket, will be sure to try fresh tactics. Newcastle make two changes, involving four positions. Graham comes in at right back for Cowell, who is not yet fit after flu; Woodburn, who played inside right last week takes over at left half, which allows Brown to come into the attack, and Crowe left half in the first game become inside right. Centre half, Smith, a 21-year-old miner, is already being spoken of as a future international. Crowe is another war-time discovery of promise; Harvey is the former Bradford City player recently transferred at a good fee, and Stubbins though he didn’t “come-off” for England at West Bromwich, is a player whom we are going to hear much in the future. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes. Newcastle United; King; Graham, Corbett; Harvey, Smith, Woodburn; Milburn, Brown, Stubbins, Crowe, Hair.
NEWCASTLE’S VISIT TO GOODISON
March 1, 1946. The Evening Express
Newcastle United with Albert Stubbins, the new centre-forward sensation, will be at Goodison Park tomorrow in a vital Football league North championship test with Everton, the most-talked of club in the country apart from those in the F.A. Cup. This match is of such immense importance to Everton’s title hopes that locally it overshadows even the F.A. Cup sixth round ties. It is 12 years since the United visited Goodison Park, for they were relegated in 1934 and have never been able to shake of the second division “dust.” That is akin to a football tragedy for Newcastle today claim the finest support of any single club. The average at St. James’s Park is 45,000 and last Saturday 50,500 saw their favourities beaten 3-1 by Everton. No club with such a following should be out of the First Division. Newcastle have a team worthy of such support, and although last week’s failure places them seven points behind the leaders, Sheffield United, they remain in the race with a chance. Everton are still that one point behind Sheffield but four points ahead of the third club, Chesterfield. Sheffield are at home to Blackpool tomorrow and form indicates that they and the Blues will win, and so keep in step. Stubbins is regarded as the natural successor to Lawton in the England team, and actually displaced Lawton in the side which lost 1-0 to Wales. Stubbins is a go getter in every sense, and masterly at picking up that long ball thorough the middle. Jack Humphreys blotted out Albert last week, and is playing so well that he should do so again if Newcastle persist in thinking that every time a pass is made it must be to Stubbins. Such tactics make it easy for such a good defence as that of Everton. The brilliance of the Everton attack leads me to the conclusion that the Blues will record their fifth “double” of the season, and their fourth successive League win. The snow has not been sufficient to cause any postponement, in fact, news from Goodison is that the game is certain. Good. That means another gate of the dimensions for the Blackpool and Liverpool games, and I shall be surprised if this one does not top the lot. Secretary Mr. Theo Kelly is confident Merseyside can beat last week’s Newcastle figure’s and is making ample arrangements to pack the ground speedily. There will be 65 turnstiles in use, and I want to give another reminder of the Bullens-road stile to the old goal double-decker. The new goal stand will not be in use, but there is ample room for those who come early, and if the old-new rule of “tender the correct money” is observed you will get in quickly to your favourite “spec” Gates will be opened early and the Royal Artillery Mounted Band, under Mr. David McBain, Bandmaster, R.A. will entertain you, thanks to the permission of offices, R.A. The kick off is at three o’clock. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes. Newcastle United; King; Graham, Corbett; Harvey, Smith, Woodburn; Milburn, Brown, Stubbins, Crowe, Hair.
• Tranmere Rovers had hoped to include Syd Rawlings, of Everton, but as he is a full-time player with the Goodison club he cannot play for the Rovers. That is a League ruling.
HINGE CROWD AT GOODISON
March 2, 1946. The Evening Express
Two grandstands were closed half an hour before the start of the Everton-Newcastle Football League championship game at Goodison Park today, and in another ten minutes the “House Full” notice went up on the third stand, and there were still thousands in the streets. Such was the crowd that the programme supply was sold out long before the start of the game, which was played on a pitch which had thwarted out splendidly. Apart from the Stanley goalmouth there was no ice or snow on the field and there must have been close on 60,000 people to see Everton face the strong sun. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain) backs; Mercer, Humphreys and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding and Boyes, forwards. Newcastle; King, goal; Graham and Corbett, backs; Harvey, Smith and Woodburn, half-backs; Milburn, Brown, Stubbins, Crowe, and Hair, forwards. Referee; Mr. F. Watson (Goole). Everton were the first into their stride, King dashing out to save from Fielding, who raced through to Catterick’s pass. Stubbins burst through at inside right but his centre was taken charge of by Watson and when Fielding and Boyes forced a corner Watson came through with a quick shot which flashed inches over the top. Wainwright and Stevenson got Corbett tied into knots as Everton proved the slightly quicker on the ball and more dominant in their general work.
At last United came into the picture, Hair forcing a corner off Jackson, and when Hair centred again Humphreys was coolness personified in taking the ball off Stubbins and passing back to Burnett. Wainwright’s distance shot was off the mark. Stevenson headed into the goalmouth as Smith dashed across to shoot out a leg and avoid the shot. Three times quick intervention prevented Everton from shooting before Fielding placed outside. The Stevenson-Wainwright corner kick which placed the United goal in jeopardy, Smith heading away off the goal line before Graham managed to intervene as the ball was bounding to the net off Fielding’s body. The opening quarter had produced an abundance of brilliant football from Everton but precious few shots to worry King. The strong Newcastle defence had a lot to do with this. The United had a close up free kick but Harvey’s shot was held safely by Burnett. Smith took the ball right from the feet of Catterick, as he was about to shoot, and then the weaving Stubbins dribbled to the line, but was headed off before he could get in his shot. Two free kicks to Everton were more a handicap than an advantage for they were in full cry, but another free kick saw King mistimed the ball and he was fortunate to push it aide for a corner. In 22 minutes Everton took the lead in fortunate manner Smith placing through his own goal. The United had played some nice football and Burnett made a glorious save from Brown when suddenly Wainwright broke clear.
BRILLIANT EVERTON SEEN FROM “TRAINER’S DEN”
March 4, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 4, Newcastle United 1
By Bee (Ernest Edwards)
Everton ploughed their fields, and scattered the Newcastle defence into submission. A Sonja Henie would have been puzzled to show her light, fantastic toe on this ice-cum-slush—cum-mud. Yet the dazzle of Fielding’s feet –to name but one of the stars of this star-studded game –was quite surprising in conditions unfavourable to finesse to applying “screw” upon the leaden. Ball, or to apply a brake upon one’s run. Newcastle bowed the knee, blessed their stars it was no more than 4-1, and thanked the cob of mud which held up a winner from Wainwright whence all but he had fied. Let us be quite fair to this gallant, sporting, losing side, true to Newcastle traditions Everton were struggling to get a blow in first when Graham, believing his goalkeeper was on guard, found King had left his goal – a gift goal to Everton, which gave them encouragement. Newcastle braved the deficit, and to the last gasp and the last divot thrown up on this treacherous turf, kept battling back and finally got their reward with a goal to Milburn. Before then, however, Boyes and Wainwright had scored nicely – engineered goals and Catterick, having a lean day in heavy going, took a welcome goal to make his side’s foursome. So that Everton won handsomely by score and by the nature of their classic footwork.
Seen From Below
I have seen games from every angle but one. Saturday concluded my angles of this very angular ground; I invaded the most exclusive “stand” in the ground,, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, where bangers on have never before crept in and crept out fearing they offended someone’s tender, susceptibilities I was in the “trainer’s den” – a bomb proofed cubby hole with concrete covering and equally hard-sitting accommodation. Six of us – Newcastle’s pair and Everton’s loyal trainer. Harry Cooke with his aide-de-camp and the team’s reserve, the silent Bentham. I wanted to see why people crowd the touch-line. What joy comes from the close-up. It was art educational experience. I saw the trainer’s magic bag and its holds and folds; its strapping, shirts, trousers, all paced as if he were going away for a week-end. Eves upon the players gave one a very close link with the players. We felt we were kicking the ball for them – spectators not only feel that way they advise the players how they should do their work – art is difficult criticism and advice so easy.
From the stage view one felt the Newcastle players had too small a left flank. Right flank rather lanky and slow and in goal a brother of Everton’s former goalkeeping boy, Frank king. In the forward line we were introduced to one we had heard so much about that we felt spectators who had been seen Dean and Lawton tried this sod could gauge his ability. Albert Stubbins is the name of this very distinguishing visitor. In short survey, let me say he has everything it takes to make a star centre; fair as a jewel, height, not weighty, but can wheel around. A composure at centre I have never seen approached since G.O. Smith. He has the Buchan look in length of leg, but he refuses to be buried and pulls a ball down from any height with delight and precision. Add a splendid shot to his lacer’s contents and unselfishness – what more would you do? Everton spectators brought up on centre forward stars gave him rich praise. It was his beautiful balance and pose and calm outlook that intrigued one most. He played well yet that must not convict the gallant defence trinity or the pivot of the suggestion of failure. This was, indeed, an all-round Everton triumph, where everybody did sound work for the benefit of their comrades. Newcastle would have beaten most teams on this showing, but Everton, just now, are linked up by the most astute of forwards and the unassuming half-back lone of Mercer. Humphreys, and Watson has no equal in the wise use of the ball, instead of the common fallacy of “get rid of it at all costs.” It is only by a view point such as I was privileged to have, that one can hear the clatter of tongues and feet; the call of Captain Greenhalgh to his men; the whirligig finger point of Boyes indicative where the Imp of Mischief and body swerve (Fielding) must but the ball to suit the little man with the most awkward walk any class footballer ever carried round with him in his jaunty jaunts. Wainwright was strapped up round his body to keep him “together” and Newcastle were strapped down by a splendid, combined side which can still move to the top place in their division. Scorers; Graham put through own goal; Boyes, Wainwright for Everton and Milburn for Newcastle. Attendance 53,000. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain) backs; Mercer, Humphreys and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding and Boyes, forwards. Newcastle; King, goal; Graham and Corbett, backs; Harvey, Smith and Woodburn, half-backs; Milburn, Brown, Stubbins, Crowe, and Hair, forwards. Referee; Mr. F. Watson (Goole).
• Liverpool won 2-0 against Sunderland. Fagan, Liddell.
• Everton reserves draw at Newcastle
March 4, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Once again Newcastle had to give beet to Everton, who thus got their “fifth” double of the season, the other victims being Sunderland, Stoke, Grimsby, and Manchester City. And there was nothing lucky” about it. Stan Seymour, who was in charge of the visiting eleven, was again loud in his praise of Everton’s sparkling play – and there are few better judges. He was envious, also of their inside-man and his mouth watered at the prospect of what Stubbins would do had he a couple like Wainwright and Fielding alongside him. Even lacking support as he did, Stubbins nevertheless stone by his clever work, and against a less solid defence might have made things very awkward. The strength of any side is that of its weakest link. In Everton’s case there isn’t a weak luck in the whole eleven. Playing on such a treacherous surfaces was no easy matter, and considering the conditions. Everton gave a superlative display. Maybe they did overdo their intricate combination and close passing in the closing stages, but one can forgive these little once the main job has been done. Newcastle hit back with a certain spirit to the second half after Milburn had reduced the lead, but I had the impression all along that Everton were playing well within themselves and that had the need arises they could have pulled out much more than they did. Instead they took things rather easily once the issue was secure. Fielding in particular delighting the crowd with another display of his splendid half control. Time and again his deceptive swerve had the opposition running the wrong way, and Major Jack Sharp, partly through whose instrumentality Fielding landed at Goodsion, must have been pleased as he watched his protégé prove the truth of his reports. Now and again Fielding tried to do just a little too much. Though it matters not when the game is already won, I hope it doesn’t become a habit which he may find difficult to break when the need arises. A big share of the credit goes to the Blues defence where Humphreys is playing so well that even Tommy Jones will have to be at his best to get his place back when fit again. Mercer and Watson were ideal wing halves putting their passes along the grounds to the open spaces. With the gap between themselves and the next nearest rivals steadily widening –Chesterfield in third place are now 5 points behind for one more game played –Everton have plenty in hand to ward off a challenge from below, but with Sheffield United still providing a Roland for each Everton Oliver, the Blues are finding it hard to overtake he leaders. If and when they succeed in wiping of the single point leeway then goal average will be sufficient to put three on top.
CATTERICK DEFIES HANDICAP
March 4, 1946. The Evening Express
Everton had an unknown hero in their latest championship quest victory – over Newcastle United at Goodison Park on Saturday. This was Harry Catterick, their 25-year-old centre-forward, and one of the inside trio whose market value at the moment is more than £25,000. Only a player; with a heart as big as Catterick’s would have played at all. Six days before Harry Catterick contracted blood-poisoning in an arm and was under continuous treatment. Despite this handicap, however, Catterick insisted on playing, but only after Trainer Mr. Harry Cooke had made special business to protect the arm. Mr. Cooke did a grand job, and I am certain, that not one of the 54,700 spectators knew that Catterick was operating under such a handicap. Certainly the centre-forward went into every tackle with all his “balance” was unaffected was proved by the magnificent manner in which he took his goal late on – a splendid drive right along the ground. With Albert Stubbins so good for the United we saw an abundance of excellent leadership on this joy day for Merseyside football with Everton’s 4-1 win being supplemented by a smashing return to winning form by Liverpool -2-0 at Sunderland –victories. Mr. Stan Seymour managing-director of Newcastle said to me after the game. “I have not seen two better inside forwards than Wainwright and Fielding,” he said “They should walk into the England side and Albert Stubbins should go with them. Albert between them two lads would be the greatest centre-forward of all.” Well, Stubbins certainly is a rare proposition and in the right line would get a pile of goals. However, before I half Stubbins as a super leader I want to see him acquire heading ability. Believe it or not Stubbins headed the ball twice only in this match, yet his foot play was a joy. I agreed with Mr. Seymour’s comments on Fielding and Wainwright, but hope, sincerely, that their inevitable elavtion to internationals is delayed for some time. Too often have I seen brilliant youngsters ruined by being thrust into international football too early. Give these lads another couple of years and then I’ll agree.
Everton’s success kept them within a point of Sheffield United, whom Liverpool meet twice in the next fortnight and they are five points ahead of Chesterfield, lying third. I still fancy Everton to outstay the Blades and retain the “title” they won in 1939. The Blues gave an inspiring exhibition on Saturday and but for the fact that they took things a little too easily during the second half would have won more convincingly. Tendency to weave patterns instead of employing the longer pass gave a reshuffled. Newcastle a brief period of ascendancy during which Milburn brought to inside-right, got a scrambling goal. What I liked about the Blues, however was the quick way in which they threw off their complacent mood, and got back to earnest business when Milburn’s shot hit the net. The stoutness, of the Everton defence revolving around the brilliant Humphreys broke the hearts of all the Newcastle forwards except Stubbins, and even when a loophole arose Burnett came through with some grand saves. I shall not readily forget one catch by George in the first half off a ball coming as a surprise at a swift pace. It was masterly. The progressive of Mercer and Watson at wing half had a vast amount to do with Everton’s perfection in approach. Strong in tackling and perceptive in interception both Joe and Gordon used the ball well with Watson featuring the quick raking pass and Mercer more concerned with the neat short ball. The forwards thrived on the support. Fielding was again amazingly clever in his control and pass to the unexpected spot – few players are so consistent in doing the thing the other fellow does not anticipate – and Wainwright and Catterick were magnificent strikers. Stevenson and another assuring day, although tantalising at times by delaying his centre and Boyes continued in his new happy vein of doing it quickly. A word for the forgotten Jackson and Greenhalgh, who tackled and kicked with such conviction, and who showed remarkable powers of recovery. Yes, and dominating it all was the “all-for-one-and-one-for-all spirit which pervaded a great team second to none in the land at the moment.
EVERTON AMATEUR SIGNINGS
March 5, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
George O’Neill, who has assisted Marine and Chester during the war-time football, has signed amateur forms for Everton. He is an outside left, aged 22.
MR. KELLY’S DUAL POST
March 6, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
Secretary-Manager for Everton
Everton F.C. board, at their meeting last night, appointed Mr. Theo Kelly, secretary of the club for the past ten years, to the dual position of secretary-manager. Though this is the first time in their history that Everton have officially recognised the position of manager in relation to the side in actual practice Mr. Kelly, in all but name, has been team manager as well as secretary and has handled the job with great tact and understanding. By officially recognising that fact, Everton now bring themselves into line with all the other leading clubs, except West Bromwich Albion, where the “head” Mr. Fred Everiss, is still designated “secretary” only. Mr. Kelly’s elevation has been well earned for football has no more efficient servant. He is outstanding as an organiser with the happy knack of doing a tremendous amount of work without fuss or osteritation and his cheeky and understanding manner in his dealing with the players, has had much to do with the team spirit which permeates the whole of the Goodison camp. A son of the late Mr. Louis Kelly, Theo’s Kelly’s first venture into football secretership was when he ran the Orrell Wednesday club. He joined Everton’s office staff in 1929, and showed such enterprise and ability in running the “A” team that five years after he was appointed assistant secretary. He carried on the affairs of the club during the illness of the late Mr. Tom McIntosh, acting as secretary during that period. January 1932 to April 1932, and being appointed secretary, after the latter’s death, in February, 1936. Just before the outbreak of war the board showed its application of his good work by bringing his salary into line with those of other leading clubs, such as Arsenal, Tottenham, and the like. During the war he combined running Everton with an important job of national work in connection with the docks.
EVERTON OFFICIAL’S NEW POST
March 6, 1946. The Evening Express
Mr. Theo Kelly, secretary of Everton F.C., was last night appointed manager of the club and will in future combine the two offices. This is the first time in 67 years of existence that Everton have had a manger, and there is no doubt that Mr. Kelly richly deserves the honour. The appointment places Mr. Kelly in the highest sphere of stipendiary posts in football. Everton’s first departure from the rule to have only Secretaries leaves only West Bromwich Albion of the premier clubs never to have had a manager. Preston North End are at present without a manger. Some clubs have managing-directors –Newcastle United in point of fact. Mr. Kelly has been a great servant to the Everton club ever since he went there to succeed the late Mr. Danny Kirkwood on August 8 1929 and certainly since the war years, has been manager in everything except name. Mr. Kelly was assistant to the late Mr. Tom McIntosh and Mr. John Fare until Mr. McIntosh’s illness in 1932. Than Mr. Kelly took over secretarial duties for a year reverting to his old position on Mr. McIntosh’s return. Another year and Mr. McIntosh fell victim to the illness home which he never recovered and Mr. Kelly, after acting as secretary, took over the position in an acting capacity. On the death of Mr. McIntosh the club received hundreds of applications for one of the most treasured positions n football but the club directors had the utmost faith in this young Liverpool man and he was appointed secretary on February 25, 1936. That the directors have complete faith in Mr. Kelly is proved by last night’s appointment on a Finance Committee recommendation, and which shows that Everton are moving with the times. Mr. Kelly deserves the lift in status for he has done wonderful work for the club and nothing better than in the war years when he carried on his many club duties including the search for players, while discharging a highly important war job. A grand follow in every respect; liked throughout the football world; a man with brilliant plans and certainly one who has played a vital pair in promising the Everton team spirit which is such a 1946 feature. Mr. Kelly will never let the club the supporters or himself down. Good Luck. Theo.
Everton make no chances, none was expected for their match with Sheffield Wednesday at Goodison Park on Saturday. Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes.
March 6, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Theo’s Kelly “Double.”
Everton have made one of their greatest “signings” for years, though you won’t see the subject of it stripped for action on the field. Throughout their long history Everton hitherto have never had a team manager. Following consideration of the matter for some time, the board last night decided to fall into line with other leading clubs by creating such a position. Having got that far, the question of who it should be next arise. To that there was only one answer, and Mr. Theo Kelly, secretary for the past ten years, was appointed to the final office, a choice which will win unqualified approval, not only among the shareholders and all interested in the club, but where it comes most –in the dressing-room. In this vital sphere the board decision will be most welcome. Any other would have been received with dismay, for every Everton player, from the youngest lad to the greatest star, has the warmest regard for Theo Kelly. Theo Kelly first joined the Goodison staff in 1929. His enterprise in handling the “A” team soon brought him into prominence, and five years late he was, appointed assistant secretary. During the late Mr. T. McIntosh’s illness he was acting secretary for a time, being appointed secretary in 1936, after Mr. McIntosh death. During his difficult war years Mr. Kelly not only carried in the affairs of Everton, with no other office help than that of a youth, but also did a big job of important in connection with shipping. The elevation been well earned.
THE LEAGUE LEAD
March 8, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
While the Cup has all the glamour, the League championship is our immediate concern, for Everton are trailing Sheffield United, the leaders, like a pack of hounds. One point separates them but Everton have found it difficult to put it back, for while they have been winning, the United have also been successful. Tomorrow Liverpool can lend a helping hand, for they are at Bramell-Lane, and it would be just like the Anfielders to upset all form and win,. Everton entertain the other Sheffield club, the Wednesday, who in recent time have not been so convincing. Nevertheless they must not be treated lightly, for they have many fine triumphs to their credit. Still I do not think they will lower the flag of Everton in the latter’s present-day form. No better football than that produced by Everton at Maine-road and Newcastle has been seen for many years, and they were almost copybook perfect at Goodison last Saturday. Charlton have rated as the team of the season. If they are playing better football than Everton, I will be surprised. The League race rests between Sheffield United and Everton, with the remainder down the field, but there is still a long way to go and many stiff hurdles. This is one which Everton should safely negotiate. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes. Sheffield Wednesday; Goodfellow; Swift, Pickering; Cockcroft, Gale, Wands; Kippax, Ward, Lindsay, Froggatt, Tomlinson.
March 8, 1946. The Evening Express
While Everton, lying second in the League a point behind Sheffield United, are entertaining Sheffield Wednesday at Goodison Park, the Reds will be at Bramell-Lane opposing the United. What joy there will be at Goodison if the Blues win and happy news comes through from Bramell-lane that Liverpool have beaten the “Blades” Chairman Mr. Billy McConnell of Liverpool, has expressed the hope that his boys can bring about the set-back to the United necessary to give Everton the chance to slip into the lead. “It is a Merseyside matter,” said Mr. McConnell,” and we always like to help Everton so long as we can beat them whenever we meet. That satisfies us.” Everton must rejoice in the fact that these Liverpool –United meetings come just at the time when Liverpool have crashed back into the form I expected, after the players had been given ample time to settle. Whatever good turn Liverpool can do must not be offset by any failure on the part of Everton who, to secure that title, must win every match. Up to now the United have been doing just that Personally, I have little doubt that a repetition of the form which settled the accounts of Manchester City twice and Newcastle United twice will be good enough to bring victory against the Wednesday. I expect another gate of 50,000 dimensions for there are plenty of stars in the Wednesday ranks, and Everton themselves are so delightful to watch that few people want to miss them. Once again, do not forget that correct money; the turnstiles to the goal-double-decker in Bullens road, and come as early as possible for this three o’clock “engagement.” Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes.
BLUES AHEAD IN 3 MINUTES
March 9, 1946. The Evening Express
Sheffield Wednesday did not pull in such a good crowd for their match with Everton at Goodison Park today as did Newcastle a week ago. Still, there were about 40,000 fans in the Park. Secretary-Manager Mr. Theo Kelly came in for many congratulations on his new appointment. Catterick was still suffering from his poisoned arm but insisted on turning out. Just a reminder about Monday’s Lancashire Cup-ties in which Bolton will visit Liverpool at Anfield, and Chester oppose Burnley. Everton entertain Tranmere Rovers in the Liverpool Cup on Wednesday at Goodison Park. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Mercer, Humphreys, and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding and Boyes, forwards. Sheffield Wednesday; Goodfellow, goal; Swift and Pickering, backs; Cockcroft, Gale and Wands, half-backs; Kippax, Thompson, Ward, Froggatt, and Tomlinson, forwards. Referee; Mr. D. Schofield (Oldham). Everton took the lead in three minutes in their first attack of the day, Catterick being the scorer. Plenty of passes had gone astray before Wednesday made two dangerous thrusts through Tomlinson. Greenhalgh charged down one effort and then Wainwright slipped the ball out to Stevenson and raced ahead for the return pass. Wainwright made ground fast and slipped the ball back inside for Stevenson to shoot to the far corner. Swift managed to kick it away, but only to the feet of the in running Catterick, who drove into the net. When Goodfellow missed Boyes’ centre it went to Catterick, who just failed to control it and it passed outside.
On Job Again
Catterick went through after splendid work by Boyes, but just as he was about to centre the ball was kicked behind. Tomlinson changed the scene of action, and Ward lapped the ball back for Froggatt to shoot first time, finding Burnett very much at home. Humphreys gained applause for holding up first Ward and then Thompson before Kippax, who signed professional only this week, cut in from the right with a cross shot which gave Burnett quite a little trouble. The Wednesday forward work was exceptionally good, the cross-field pass being a feature. Catterick slipped the ball to his left for Fielding to race in with a splendid shot, which Goodfellow saved at full length. Goodfellow saved a cross shot from Wainwright before Burnett dashed out to hold a handing centre from Kippax. Watson sent Boyes away perfectly, and when the ball dropped back to Fielding the inside left shot first time, only to see the ball strike a defender. Everton pressed home the attack and the persistence of Stevenson gave Wainwright an open goal, but he got too far under the ball and over the top it went. The Wednesday were exceptionally dangerous with their Swift developed attacks and had Humphreys not got it the way of quick shot from Thompson I think it would have been all square.
EVERTON’S STAR PLAYERS FAIL TO SHINE
March 11, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
By “Bee” (Ernest Edwards)
Everton 2 Sheffield Wednesday 2
Sheffield Wednesday, an honoured name in football’s history books, shocked Everton into a draw and the home side should count themselves fortunate to escape defeat. Sheffield had speed, two splendid wingers, a centre who had climbed a ladder all week; two who had been in the mines at eleven o’clock that morning; a defence trio whose height must be well-nigh unequalled, and a centre-half back of size and progressive ideas. I am painting a picture of Sheffield because they were worth seeing and Everton players could copy their method of movement and find themselves useful. For example, the splendid wing men did not cavort around the corner flag. They flung the ball to the middle of the goal and, in effect, said “It’s all yours.” Ward, in particular, tried hard to convert the centres, but the tired Froggatt (generally so excellent), was faulted four times. Everton wingers rarely elected to move by this tread –they are born individualists and quite naturally they start forward and decide to put the brake on, centre, or pass at a later stage. It is pretty useful it prettiness is not delayed to great lengths –then the covering up of modern half-backs, brought to a fine standard, just closes the wing man’s effort. And what comes there form? A. Corner kick or a throw-in. We are not very interested!
There were four goals, and each goalkeeper at least a dozen first-class saves, the one-handed edge-away being most dramatic. Good goalkeeping, a two-goal lead to Everton washed out foot work from both sides bearing the hall-mark of brainy effort –and two penalty kick thoughts –these put together made this game on a summery afternoon a great delight to the connoisseur. The early goal to Catterick caused Everton to become “drunk with success.” To the interval Sheffield were worth a goal, Everton began to fade, Chadwick’s severe injury and absence (second half he became a limp winger) snapped Everton’s strength. Wainwright limped, too, and Fielding, damaging his shoulder blade, could not get through with his task of winding up the Everton works. Everton stars were quite below par.
The referee did his work manfully and well. He would not allow Everton a penalty when he adjudged a defender to have handled the ball. Some folk said he “must” give a penalty. The referee “must” read into a handling act whether it was, in his judgement, intentional. He and this was not intentional and, if it interests anyone that was my view. Burnett busy and bright all day was challenged when in possession of the ball. Burnett tried to brush his opponents away; he allowed him. The referee quite rightly ordered a free kick. The incident occurred a yard or more inside the penalty area. The referee adopted a somewhat customary let out by placing the free kick on the penalty box line. Sheffield vowed it was a “box number” and pointed to divots in the “box” I fear Everton escaped a spot kick through the referee’s yardstick being at fault. Sometimes it works the other way, and so we pass on content to have had full enjoyment and to have seen a very fair rival solo battling back from 2-0 to a merited draw.
Causes and Effects
Everton’s winging swinging gait was not functioning this time. Mercer and Watson both so immaculate the week before, erred in their passing; Mercer saved a certain goal but thoughtless folk do not remember this when comparing it with a missed pass by a half-backs-forwards may err as they will; it is not held against them, but half-backs must never put a pass wrong! George Jackson, spite a head blow early on, gave his best display of the season against odds and against a fleet and competent winger. Greenhalgh was not happy, and Burnett, Jackson and the stately and excellent Humphreys kept Everton from defeat. Scorers Catterick and Stevenson for Everton and Thompson and Ward for Sheffield. Attendance 48,441. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Mercer, Humphreys, and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding and Boyes, forwards. Sheffield Wednesday; Goodfellow, goal; Swift and Pickering, backs; Cockcroft, Gale and Wands, half-backs; Kippax, Thompson, Ward, Froggatt, and Tomlinson, forwards. Referee; Mr. D. Schofield (Oldham).
• Liverpool lost 3-1 to Sheffield United; Balmer (Penalty) for Liverpool and Reid, Hagen, and Collingsdridge for Sheffield. Hagen of Sheffield sent penalty wide.
THE OTHER WAY
March 11, 1946. The Evening Express
With 50 minutes of the Everton-Wednesday test at Goodison Park gone it appeared a million to one on Everton winning, with a two goal-lead, obtained by Catterick and Stevenson, and although the Wednesday had compared with the Blues on the point of skill and progression they had not been convincing in front of goal. Then the “old faithful” –Burnett, Jackson and Greenhalgh faltered and eventually fell. The three who have stood in the breach for each of Everton’s games this season with one exception made mistakes which brought equalisers per Thompson and ward, just at a time when we received news that Liverpool were going down at Bramell-lane. I am not disputing that Wednesday deserved their half-share, although I disagree with those who assert they merited a win. That would be an injustice to Everton, who laboured for most of the game with Catterick a limping passenger. Wainwright’s groin had to be strapped at half-time, and Mercer’s leg was cut. No team could ever expect to lose the full services of such players and get away with it. Those things just do not happen. Curiously enough, it was Catterick who almost won the game in the last seconds; in fact he was unfortunate not to do so. A brave header, a shot against the post and a blocked shot all came on top of each other to provide a sensational finale for a great game which stamped Wednesday as the best football combination to visit Goodison this season. Wednesday showed Everton a thing or two when it came to first time open methods, and their whole work had a crispness which was missing from this Everton. I am not blaming Everton for anything except a tendency to keep play too close. This side is still god enough to win at Hillsbrough on Saturday and win the title. Make no mistake about that. Whether Catterick will be fit to play is debatable for only “guts” enabled him to carry on at outside right in the second half. Cuttack’s poisoned arm was still troubling him and the kick under the knee was so severe that he could not walk after getting out of the bath and had to be driven to the station in a director’s ear. Harry was walking with a stick when Secretary-Manager Mr. Kelly went to see him yesterday. I say after deep consideration that had Catterick been at centre-forward all through Everton would have won well.
A curiosity of the game, watched by 48,440 people, was that while Fielding was given more latitude than in any game so far he did not quite come off, and the injury to Catterick enabled the sharp-witted Wednesday defence to double the guard on the man they assumed to be the chief danger to them –Wainwright. Whatever Wainwright went two opponents “travelled” with him and on the three occasions that Eddie did slip his “shadows” he was so excited that he shot over the bar. Yes, you will see that the Wednesday went into this match with a preconceived plan, and they made it pay hand-somely. I will not individualise so far as Everton are concerned, except to say that Jack Humphreys had a great game again, and that Watson’s was another excellent contribution. The team was all right apart from minor errors and truth is they clashed with another splendid combination. For all that Everton should have won. Chairman Mr. Will Gibbons was an absentee, but Directors Ernest Green, Cecil Baxter, George Evans, Tom Percy, Dickie Williams, Fred Lake and Dick Searle were there to greet the Lord Mayor (Alderman Luke Hogan) and sons Luke and Bill.
STARS WERE DIMMED
March 11, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Everton had got themselves such a high standard of efficiency in recent weeks, that when they failed to live up to it the disappointing was naturally harder to except. The higher one rises, the harder the fall when it comes and Everton had reached football’s pinnacle so their tumble to the Wednesday was felt much more than it need be. There were exterminating, circumstances for failure to beat the Sheffield club for beat them they would had not their attack been put out of joint by the injury to Catterick. From then on Everton were like a machine with a faulty cog. Instead of it running smoothly, it jerked and tumbled and lost its precision. Everton were without doubt a better side than the Wednesday until the Catterick blow hit them. No they were not so good as they were against Manchester City and Newcastle, but I firmly believe even now that they would have won this game but for their misfortune. I say that in the full knowledge that the Wednesday were a smart side without being possessed of the tactical moves of Everton, who cuddled and coarsen the ball to do their bidding in a manner which had made them the talk of the football world. The race for the championship is not yet over, but the Wednesday undoubtedly did their friends, the United, a good turn by winning a point at Goodison Park. And let me tell you they earned it; are, perhaps they were unfortunate not to sneak away with two. The first half had been full of football meat, with Everton providing the intricacies of the game and the Wednesday the same amount of thrills by a different channel –the open game. It was thoroughly enjoyable fare with goals, thrills galore. If anything I fancy Everton were a shade too intricate no matter how pleasing to the eye their football. They had snapped a goal in three minutes – a hearty send-off to be sure. I wonder would it have been better had they not scored so early? It may have given them a false idea about the Wednesday, and a greater belief in themselves than was merited, for the Wednesday had their fair share of the play, and Everton could not have felt that their position was assure against the swift digs of the “Owls” forwards. Both sides should have scored several first-half goals with the chances at their disposal, despite the fine work of the respective goalkeepers Burnett and Goodfellow, a fine upstanding goalkeeper whose reach often meant the difference between success and failure. But with Catterick’s injury and a reorganised Everton forward line the Goodison men lost their great virtue –football. They became a fighting force; and how they had to battle against a Wednesday whose speed to the ball was often disconcerting to the Everton defence. Everton’s passing went wrong; their link-up was missing –small wonder with Catterick operating on the right wing and Fielding limping about – and the Wednesday gained in strength after Stevenson’s goal, which we though had put paid to Wednesday’s account. Tomlinson played havoc and was chiefly responable for Everton’s worry while Kippax did not find Greenhalgh so dominating as usual.
AN EVERTON TRY-OUT
March 12, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Everton and Tranmere Rovers meet tomorrow at Goodison Park in the semi-final of the Liverpool senior Cup. Tranmere have before today spring a surprised at Goodison Park and in view of their smart win over Oldham Athletic at Boundary Park last Saturday there is an tradition that they have made an upward rise for it is no mean performance to win at Oldham. They are sending over a really strong side to meet Everton and these who think that it is a good thing for the latter may have came to chance their tune before the end. Everton have been hard hit on the injury to Catterick who is unable to lead the attack, and of course, Wainwright is not available. Catterick’s absence opens the way for Everton to try out one of their pre-war amateur centre-forwards Higgins who has just returned from the forces. He was only signed yesterday on professional forms, and it will be interesting to see how he fares against Bull, the Rovers pivot, who has made a habit of giving of the best in our two local grounds. Higgins played in the reserves side at Bramell Lane last Saturday. Greenhalgh has been give a much-needed rest, and his place will be taken by Dugdale, who used to play for the Colts before he joined the Fleet. He has not played much football during his travels but if he can reproduce the form which made him one of the most outstanding young full backs in the Colts team he will not be faulted. It seems we saw T.G. Jones in action, his leg injury has proved sorrow business but he recently told me that it was all right again, and had stood up to the test in the reserves team with every satisfaction. “T.G.” is one of the most accomplished centre half backs in the land and I look forward to seeing him once more. Bentham, who has been acting reserve, returns to his former position at inside right to partner Stevenson, and Jackie Grant in for Mercer, also rested. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Dugdale; Grant, Jones (TG), Watson; Stevenson, Bentham, Higgins, Fieldings, Boyes or Wright (J.). Everton will play the same team at Hillsborough as that which drew with the Wednesday on Saturday.
BOARDS DISCUSS GROUND MATTERS
March 12, 1946. The Evening Express
A meeting of the Grounds of Liverpool F.C has been called for today to consider safety measured at Anfield following the Bolton disaster, and there is no doubt that reference will be made to the matter at this evening meeting of the Everton directors. The arrangements at both Anfield and Goodison Park are as near perfection as possible under present conditions when clubs are bound by restrictions. Granted that the clubs would like to make improvements and renovations, at the moment it is out of the question. The whole solution lies with the Football Association, who ought to make immediate approach to the Home Office. Football grounds have had little or nothing done to them for six years and permits should be issued for an increase in expenditure on repair work. Secretary –Manager Theo Kelly, of Everton, says that it takes £2,000 a year to maintain Goodison Park, and it will cost £10,000 to put the estate into the repair Everton want. Such work as possible has been done to crush barriers at Goodison and Anfield, but at Goodison no fewer than 15 turnstiles are still out of use because there are no materials. The new goal double-decker cannot be used for similar reason. That means the loss directly, of room for 4,000 spectators, while the closed turnstiles indirectly mean that thousands of people who would, ordinarily, use that end of the ground, have to enter at other sections, and then cannot get around to that side. Everton have only 65 turnstiles in use. “The Football Association approach to the Home Office would enable all clubs to renovate their grounds properly” said Mr. Kelly, I am in entire agreement. The Everton and Liverpool directorates this evening will also discuss what financial aid they will give the Disaster Fund. Clubs want to help, but they are waiting to see what the Football association and the Football League proposes to do.
We shall be at Goodison Park tomorrow afternoon to see Everton and Tranmere Rovers meet in the first “leg” of the Liverpool Senior Cup semi-final. Mr. Bob Trueman, chairman of Tranmere Rovers had asked Chelsea permission to include Tommy Lawton at centre forward, but Tommy plays in London. The winners of this tie meet either Liverpool or Southport in the final. Tranmere only success was in 1933-34. I saw the Rovers in action last week, and warn Everton that they are a go-ahead side which could cause some trouble if they shot more readily. Everton will lack some of their stars because of injury, and Catterick, Mercer, and Wainwright come into the category, but both clubs will field their best possible elevens, and it should be quite a good show for the midweek fans. Injuries force Everton to make changes and Billy Higgins the latest professional signing, will lead the attack. Bentham will be at inside-right, while Tommy Jones will be at centre-half sand Grant on his right. Gordon Dugdale, the Royal Navy lad, plays at left back, and J. Wright is among the six forwards from which the attack will be selected. The Rovers have not yet named a centre-forward for the game, starting at three o’clock. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Dugdale; Grant, Jones (Tommy), Watson; Stevenson, Bentham, Higgins, Fielding, Boyes, J. Wright. Tranmere Rovers; Lloyd; Hodgson, Hornby; Payne, Bell, Williamson; Harlock, Rosenthal, A. N. Other, Bridges, Jones (T.B),; Everton for their visit to Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday hope that injuries will have cleared so that they can play an unchanged team, namely; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes.
Wally Owen, the Garston lad, has now signed professional for Everton.
LIVERPOOL SENIOR CUP TODAY
March 13, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
By John Peel
Mid-week football enthusiasts have an opportunity of seeing an interesting game this afternoon when Everton and Tranmere Rovers meet at Goodison Park in the semi-final of the Liverpool Cup; Kick-off 3pm. With Catterick on the injured list and Wainwright not available Everton are to give Higgins, who was only signed on professional forms on Monday, the task of leading the attack, while Bentham will partner Stevenson on the right wing. Other players are being rested, and Dugdale a former Colts player before joining the Fleet Air Arm, comes in at left back. Jones (TG) resumes as pivot and Grant at right half in the place of Mercer and Humphreys. Tranmere will have the side which did duty at Oldham on Saturday except that they have a doubt at centre-forward. The Rovers have played many stirring games at Goodison and anticipated a hard tussle for the right to enter the final; Teams; Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Dugdale; Grant, Jones (Tommy), Watson; Stevenson, Bentham, Higgins, Fielding, Boyes, J. Wright. Tranmere Rovers; Lloyd; Hodgson, Hornby; Payne, Bell, Williamson; Harlock, Rosenthal, A. N. Other, Bridges, Jones (T.B)
Everton Football Club are to consider their contribution to the fund at their meeting next week. The club feel that it is not a matter for quick thought, but one for calm consideration.
William Owen Signed Professional Forms
Everton yesterday signed on professional forms William Owen, an inside or outside right. Hailing from Garston, Owen played for the Everton first team in several games during the early part of the war. He has just been demobilised from the Army.
TWO FOR BRIDGES
March 13, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Tranmere Rovers Lead Everton
Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Dugdale, backs; Grant, Jones (TG), and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Bentham (captain), J. Wright, Higgins, and Boyes, forwards. Tranmere Rovers; Lloyd, goal; Hodgson and Hornby, backs; Payne, Bell and Williamson, half-backs; Harlock, Rosenthials, Steele (Stockport County), Bridges and Jones, forwards. Referee; Mr. F. W. Worth (Liverpool). Everton had a mixed eleven for this semi-final of the Liverpool Senior Cup at Goodison Park. They gave some of their youngsters a run out. Tranmere brought a strong side. Within a minute the Rovers had scored, Bridges, following excelled work by Rosenthal, Rovers schemer-in-chief went through and from an awkward angle made a fine shot which Burnett caught but was over his goal line when he did so. The referee, who was right up with the play immediately signalled a goal. Everton should have equalised when Boyes shot straight at Lloyd and again when Bentham practically with an open goal shot in such a manner that Lloyd was able to get his hand to the ball and allow Hodgson to complete the clearance. T.G. Jones appeared to have lost none of his skill, and was responsible for holding down several Rovers’ forward movements. Everton’s goal had some escapes, particularly when Jones put right across the Everton goal and Burnett and Steele both missed the ball, which travelled wide. Everton waited for the ball, Tranmere went for it, and they were rewarded for their efforts. There was no doubt the Rovers were providing all the thrills, and at 24 minutes they scored a second goal through Bridges. Watson tried an overhead kick, but the ball went straight to Bridges who shot beyond Burnett. A thrilling spell and two remarkable escapes for Everton followed. Bridges cracked in a shot which shock the woodwork, and then Rosenthal, dribbling his way through, finished up with a shot which bumped up against the upright. So far the Everton attack had shown little promise of beating down the Rovers defence.
Half-time; Everton 0, Tranmere Rovers 2.
Everton reorganised their forward line in the second half and showed much more punch. Bridge was again on the mark with a long shot, and later shot over from a reasonably good position. At 55 minutes Higgins after there had been a suggestion of a penalty award, reduced Everton’s arrears by beating Lloyd.
ROVERS LEAD IN A MINUTE
March 13, 1946. The Evening Express
Liverpool Cup shock for Everton
Tranmere Rovers had Steele, the Stockport County centre forward, in their team against Everton in the Liverpool Cup semi-final at Goodison Park today, while Everton introduced Jack Wright at centre forward, and included Higgins their latest professional, who used to play for the Rovers. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Dugdale, backs; Grant, Jones (TG), and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Bentham (captain), J. Wright, Higgins, and Boyes, forwards. Tranmere Rovers; Lloyd, goal; Hodgson and Hornby, backs; Payne, Bell and Williamson, half-backs; Harlock, Rosenthials, Steele (Stockport County), Bridges and Jones, forwards. Referee; Mr. F. W. Worth (Liverpool). There was a sensational opening, for within one minute the Rovers were a goal up. Bridges cut to outside right past Dugdale and shot from a narrow angle. Burnett catching the ball, but only after it had passed a yard over the line. Everton responded through Boyes, who ran half the length of the field, but his low centre was neatly held by Lloyd. Wright put Bentham through with a neat overhead kick, but Lloyd dived out to push the ball away and Hodgson completed the clearance. The quick tackling of the Rovers’ half-backs prevented Everton from making progress, but Stevenson and Bentham worked out an opening for Wright, whose shot lacked power. Harry Catterick, who was sitting in the Press box, said that it is extremely doubtful that he will be fit to play this week, as his leg is still very sore. Burnett dashed out to try and intercept the in-running Jones, but was beaten by the ball and it was fortunate that Tommy Jones was well positioned or the Rovers would have been two up. From Harlock’s corner Everton had another narrow escape, Steele just failing to gather Benny Jone’s swift cross centre. Harlock returned the ball quickly and Benny Jones headed over the top after Williamson’s shot had been charged down.
LIVERPOOL SENIOR CUP
March 14, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton’s Home Draw
Everton 3, Tranmere Rovers 3
The first leg of the Liverpool Senior Cup semi-final between Everton and Tranmere Rovers at Goodison Park, provided one of the keenest games I have seen for a while. The result was 3-3, Everton pulling up after they had been two goals in arrears. Tranmere showed amazingly good form, particularly in the first half, when their speed, to the ball prevented Everton from getting together. They took a goal in the first minute through bridges, who later added a second. Everton had not been trustful enough. They seemed rather lackadaisical, waiting for the ball, while the Rovers went for it and usually took possession of it. The young lads of the Everton side had thus far failed to come up to expectations and the Rovers might well have taken a much more handsome lead at the half-way stage than the two goals they scored. Twice they hit the bar and goalkeeper Burnett had some hard shots to cope with the Rovers were undeniably well worth their interval lead for they had been the more progressive and much leveller side in the second half Everton reorganised their attack and this brought more punch into the line but nevertheless the Rovers resumed in a style which did not suggest that Everton would clear off the arrears.
But once the home side had the satisfaction of a goal they settled down to more constructive play. Higgins scored their first goal and ultimately went to a score a “hat-trick.” This was after he had taken over the centre forward position from Wright, who had not shown the necessary thrust against a sound and stubborn defence. The change over which brought Boyes and Stevenson into the inside forward positions made the line swing along it a much better pace. Furthermore there was greater driving power in the attack but, just when everyone anticipated a keen and close match Rosenthal one of the most skilful players afield scored the best goal of the match and a Tranmere victory seemed assured. Near the end, however Higgins scored a Lawton-like goal when he headed beyond the advancing goalkeeper Lloyd, so that the teams will have to start afresh when they meet again. I have heard of the Rovers improvement, this season and will hearily confirm this for they played with a zest and some degree of ability. Bridges was the big man of the first half, for his burst through was really dangerous to the Everton defence, in which Jones (TG) showed that he had lost none of his skill but Dugdale the young amateur at left back was obviously out of touch with things. He had a powerful wing against him in Rosenthal and Harlock. Harlock only in his teens, is a smart winger. Both sides missed chance and Everton also had the misfortune to hit the woodwork, but no one will deny that the game had been thoroughly enjoyable, and the Rovers almost brought off another surprise at Goodison Park. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Dugdale, backs; Grant, Jones (TG), and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Bentham (captain), J. Wright, Higgins, and Boyes, forwards. Tranmere Rovers; Lloyd, goal; Hodgson and Hornby, backs; Payne, Bell and Williamson, half-backs; Harlock, Rosenthials, Steele, Bridges and Jones, forwards. Referee; Mr. F. W. Worth (Liverpool).
Wainwright Excels For The Army
Army 3, R.A.F 0
Wainwright Everton inside right, earning chief honours by scoring twice and generally showing excellent ball control. Lawton scored the other.
March 14, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Liverpool Cup games sometimes fall flat, but the semi-final between Everton and Tranmere Rovers was one of the best I have seen. I have not seen the Rovers for some considerable time, but had heard that they were playing sound football. I confirm that after yesterday’s display, for they put everything into it, and at one time appears to have the game well in hand. The “second leg” will be played shortly, and there is a possibility that is may be staged at Goodison Park again. The Rovers young side –its average age is 21 – were quick of the mark, played some nice football, and play strongly – the correct thing with the wind in their favours, the enthusitic were they, that there seemed to be two Tranmere players in every one of Everton. Bridges was like quick-silver in his darts through and he got two goals in the first half, it should have been more for the woodwork was twice shaken. I liked the way Rosenthal opened up the game, and the manner in which Harlock speed away the Everton defensive barrier. One almost forget the bitterly cold wind, for there was always something to turn away the attention in other direction. Everton reformed their attack in the second half; and the change brought more driving power in the line. Higgins signed professional only a few days ago, had the honour of scoring a “hat-trick” his bets goal, the last, which was Lawton-like in the making. However that a happy debut. Rosenthal’s goal, however capped the lot, for his drive sped into the Everton goal at tremendous speed and against the wind.
EVERTON FIND ANOTHER LEADER
March 14, 1946. The Evening Express
Football history shows that Everton have always been able to find first-class centre-forwards from days of Fred Geary down to Harry Catterick, and it must have been a stroke of genius on someone’s part to place a young Birkenhead lad into the position yesterday to make the Liverpool Senior Cup semi-final with Tranmere Rovers team with possibilities when they clash, at Prenton Park in the second “leg”. The player was Billy Higgins, who a week ago was a petty officer in the Royal Navy, but who became a professional with the Blues on Monday. Higgins was an inside left and started yesterday’s “first leg” at Goodison Park as such. But....moved to centre forward in the second half, he scored brilliant hat-trick to deprive the Rovers of a victory – this was apologies to Everton – I think they deserved. It has rarely been my policy to go “off the deep end” over any young player on one showing, but in my opinion Everton have in Higgins a player with that positional sense and keen eye to the half-chance who may blossom out into yet another. At Everton centre-forwards. So impressed was I with the two neatly headed goals Higgins took that I would not hesitate to place him in the League side. The irony of it, from the Tranmere point of view, is that Higgins was a Rovers player, coming from a long line of footballing “Higgins.” However, Tranmere have groomed so many boys in their time that they are used to seeing their products do well with other clubs. I could gave a list to fill this column, but suffice to say that if Higgins does as I think he will, make the grade then among the most delighted will be chairman Mr. Bob Trueman, of the Rovers, who it was good to see at an away match again. Make no mistake this was Tranmere’s game. It was the Rovers who made us forget the cold – if possible – with their clever, collaborative approach and had it not been for the timely Everton forward switch in the second half it would have been a case of “no bonus for Everton.” The Rovers well deserved their two goal lead at the interval per the enterprising Bridges, who please me more every time I see him. Higgins levelled matters, but there was no holding the Rovers, who went ahead again with a smashing shot by Abe Rosenthal who looked really happy on Mr. Ted Story’s nice stretch of turf. It needed only two minutes to time when Higgins said “Thanks, George,” to Jackson for a quick “up-the-middle” ball, and a head flick made it all square again. Maybe it was as well for it means that the second “leg” is still a game in every sense and on yesterday’s form Tranmere can win. The Rovers attack was excellent in every respect, and I admitted the work of the diligent wing half-backs, Payne – good boy this and Williamson whose enthusiasm makes up for lack of artistry. In the middle Harold Bell was as happy as a sandboy in contrast to his centre-forward role of a week ago. Bell, believe me, is a great centre-half. And in defence the Rovers had, for consistency a pull over Everton.
So far as the Blues are concerned I think they were guilty of taking matters too easily in the first half, the Blues livened up well in the second half when Jack Wright went to his usual position, and Stevenson and Boyes did so much good work at inside-forward. Of course, Bentham, dropping back to right-half, was also a winning move, for Stan seems happier there these days. Dugdale was obviously out of touch following his Royal Navy duties, but I forecast, with confidence a grand future for this young lad. Tommy Jones was immaculate as usual although we who know him appreciate that he is still playing his way back into the game following injury. Johnson ....grand. Watson ....also grand. Grant... the great trier. But ....Tranmere deserved to win a game bringing a gate of more than £400. This was another enjoyable mid-week re-union under Chairman Mr. Will Gibbins and colleagues between two clubs closely allied on the “friendship standard.”
Everton Reserves entertain Sheffield Wednesday Reserves at Goodison Park on Saturday, with the following team; Sagar; Curwen, Dugdale; Grant, Jones (Tommy), Davies; (from) Rawlings, Bell, J. Wright, Higgins, Lyon, G. O’Neill.
Everton “A” (v Marine, Bellefield) J.A. Jones; Prescot and Purvis; Goulding, Falder, Hill; Lowe, Elliott, C. Birmingham, Rothwell, Long;
Marine; (from); Simpson; Hanson, Welsby; Lea, Edwards, Morgan, Dachler, Birtles; Craig, King, Veacock, Fenton, Bretton, O’Neill, Jones;
Everton Colt (v Unity Boy’s Club, at Mossley Hill); Maines; T. Jones, Rankin; Melling, Farrer, Street; Macaulay, Hickson, S. Wright, G. Hannan, Myers.
March 15, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
There is every indication that the return game between the Wednesday and Everton will be a terrific duel. That Everton did not win at Goodison is attributed to the fact that Catterick was injured. I am not making excuses for them, for the Yorkshire side were worthy their draw, but it was not until Catterick hurt that they rose to the heights which almost brought them victory. Everton were not so dominating as usual, but they were playing well enough with a complete team to warrant a win, but with their centre forward on the wing the swung went out of their play. Where they had been fluent, they became laboured. The link-up naturally suffered and instead of them being a smooth, accomplished side they became units instead of a whole. It could only be expected. It is problematic whether Catterick will be fit to take his place at Hillsbrough. He was at Goodison on Wednesday but was not certain that he would be fit for Saturday. everything is being done to have him ready. He is the only doubt, although his name is in the team sheet. it will need Everton’s best to win on the Wednesday ground for like their neighbours, the Wednesday are fast and progressive. I have a hunch that Everton can pull it off. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes.
March 15, 1946. The Evening Express
Everton will, I expect have to find another centre forward for the visit to Sheffield Wednesday, as Catterick assures me he will not be fit. Choice may fall on Billy Higgins, who scored three goals against Tranmere on Wednesday. Higgins has a keen positional sense, and is quite an opportunist, so knowing that he would get plenty of openings per the brilliant inside men, Fielding and Wainwright, and the choicest of centres from Stevenson and Boyes. Of course Catterick would be a great loss, for Harry is one of football’s greatest leaders of the moment. The Everton defence is good enough, and the Blues have tackled successfully harder tasks than this in the past six months. I agree that the Wednesday are one of the best sides I have seen this season, but with a stronger combination they were beaten at home by Liverpool 3-2 and I think Everton can emulate the Reds if not by the same score. A victory tomorrow with my Anfield hopes is a vital important to Everton. Everton play Rangers in Belfast on April 30. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Catterick, Fielding, Boyes.
A POOR GAME
March 18, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton Draw With Sheffield Wednesday
Sheffield Wednesday 0, Everton 0
It was a disappointing game between Sheffield Wednesday and Everton at Hillsbrough, the football falling far below the standard expected and a goalless draw was perhaps a fair result. Wednesday had more of the game, but their rather moderate attacks presented few problems to Everton’s defence. Too much reliance was placed on efforts to rush the ball through and Jackson and Greenhalgh usually put paid to these tactics. Their covering was excellent and the goalkeeper did what little he had to confidently and well. Jackson’s positional play in particular was excellent, for he had against him Wednesday’s most lively wing in Froggatt and Tomlinson. Greenhalgh’s task was easiest for Kippax the outside-right lacked experience and Thompson was slow and rarely in the picture. Humphreys played a very sound game at centre half and gave Ward no rope. Mercer played cool and polished football at right half and gave many excellent passes to his forwards. Defences however, on both sides were rather to good for their respective attacks. Everton’s forward play flattered only to deceive. They kept the ball on the ground excellently but their attacks usually petered out against the strong tackling Wednesday half-backs. Yet curiously enough the best scoring opportunity of the game came to them when Boyes found himself with only Goodfellow to beat. The outstanding shot straight at the goalkeeper, Stevenson and Boyes however, were Everton’s danger man for both wingers showed plenty of pace and centred accurately; but there was a curious apathy in the inside positions where Higgins was made his debut in placed of the injured Catterick, could never escape the grip of Gale, the Wednesday centre-half. The centre-forward had little opportunity, for he rarely received the ball in a favourable position and the swift tackling of Swift and Pickering closed all avenues to goal. Wainwright and Stevenson combined well on the right wing, where Wainwright was always ready to try a shot but was rarely on the mark and in fact most of Everton’s shooting was very erratic and uncertain.
Colourless First Half
It was a colourless first half in which Wednesday had slightly the better of the exchanges, but only Frogatt and Tomlinson seemed likely to achieve any success. Both these players went close with commendable efforts. The rest of the Wednesday attack was slow. Burnett however made the startling save from Froggatt. Wednesday played with more spirit in the second half and had the better of the game. One beautifully-placed header by Tomlinson seemed likely to bring along the long-awaited goal, but the ball hit the crossbar and dropped behind. Everton although attacking less frequently were playing good football up to a point and had two great chances in this half of getting the points. Higgins gave Boyes almost an open goal, but the winger shot straight at Goodfellow and immediately afterwards Stevenson kicked the ball almost into the Wednesday goalmouth, Higgins just failed to reach it and Pickering cleared off the line. Everton had the better football ideas but lacked the necessary thrusts to secure the points. Sheffield Wednesday; Goodfellow, goal; Swift and Pickering, backs; Cockcroft, Gale and Wands, half-backs; Kippax, Thompson, Ward, Froggatt, and Tomlinson, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Mercer, Humphreys, and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Wainwright, Higgins, Fielding, and Boyes, forwards. Referee; Mr. D. Scholfield (Oldham).
• Everton Reserves lost 2-0 against Sheffield United
• Liverpool Lost 3-0 to Sheffield United, Collindridge, Reid and Nightingale.
EVERTON LACK FINISH
March 18, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Defences were on top in a game which lacked colour at Hillsborough and Everton might have done better than share the points in a goalless draw with Sheffield Wednesday. Both sides lacked thrust and attempts to rush the ball through were easily dealt with by the respective defences. Everton looked the better side, but they flattered only to deceive, and although Stevenson and Boyes were dangerous wingers, there was a weakness in the centre which rarely caused the Wednesday half-backs much trouble. Higgins, making his debut at centre-forward in place of the injured Catterick had few opportunities and was firmly held by Gale, the Wednesday centre-half. Wainwright made a good partner for Stevenson on the right wing and was always an opportunist, but his shooting, like that of the other Everton forwards, lacked power and direction. Boyes had the best scoring opportunity of the game, but shot straight at the goalkeeper, and when Sheffield Wednesday looked more dangerous in the second half, their best effort was a header by Tomlinson, which hit the crossbar and went behind. Jackson and Greenhalgh were the pick of the Everton defence, and their excellent covering left Burnett with little to do. Mercer was ever-present, and his fine passes to the forwards might have brought both points had the opportunities thus created been pressed home with more drive.
March 18, 1946. The Evening Express
Had they taken some good chances Everton would have won against Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough, but as it was a point from a goalless draw was a rare achievement against such a splendid team. Although the Wednesday had rather more of the pressure it was Everton who served up the real football and the Blues deserved to win. Higgins led the Everton attack with a fair measure of success although finding it as difficult to shake off Gale as ward did Humphreys. Snap in front of goal was Everton’s failure, but the defence was magnificent. Yes, a draw was all right, but there must be no more point-dropping.
A Blow to Everton hopes is that they will lose Eddie Wainwright for at least one match. He goes to play against France on March 28 and against Luxemburg on March 30, so that Everton will not have him for the home match v. Huddersfield Town.
EVERTON AT HUDDSERFIELD
March 20, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
By John Peel.
If Everton are to maintain their place in the championship race for the League North they must secure both points when they visit Huddersfield Town on Saturday. The leaders Sheffield United visit Bury and appear to have a somewhat easy task before them to increasing their points. They command a lead of three points over Everton at the moment, but I am confident that the Goodison Park side can succeed at Huddersfield, especially when it is recalled that they have lost only one away League game since the advent of 1946. I do not expect the Everton side to show any change in defence for Saturday’s game but it is possible that there may be forward changes.
NO DEFENSIVE CHANGES
March 20, 1946. The Evening Express
Everton make no defensive changes for the visit to Huddersfield Town, but the attack has not yet been settled.
Everton Reserves (v. Huddersfield T.); Sagar; Curwen, Dugdale; Sweeney, Jones (TG), Davies; Arthur, Johnson, Barker (R), Lyons, G. McNeill.
EVERTON GO TO HUDDERSFIELD
March 22, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Looking dispassionately at the North League table, it would appear that the title is in safe keeping of Sheffield United with their three points lead over Everton. Those three points will take a lot of rubbing off but the race is not won until it is lost, and much can happen before the season runs out. The injury to Catterick has proved costly, for it has robbed the Everton front line of its balance, its striking power, and its swift movements. Tomorrow Everton go to Huddersfield, a good team without being brilliant. I used to love going to the Yorkshire centre, when Clem Stephenson, Alec Jackson, Bob Kelly, and W.H. Smith were footing it for the Town. What a forward line that was. They have nothing like it at present, but at times it can rise to some height, and Price must be watched, but I need not stress the fact to the best half-back line in football today. Humphreys has adapted himself to the Everton style as to the manner born. He is using the ball nowadays. It will not be known until almost kick-off time what the forward line will be at Huddersfield. The defence is as usual, but all I can say about the attack at the moment is that the constitution of the forwards is doubtful. There may possible be two changes. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Stevenson, Wainwright, Higgins, Fielding, Boyes.
Everton Reserves (v. Huddersfield, at Goodison Park); Sagar; Curwen, Dugdale; Sweeney, Tommy Jones, Davies; Arthur, Johnson, H. Barker, Lyon, G. McNeill.
March 22 1946. The Evening Express
Everton have a tremendous hard task ahead of them in their bid for the championship of the League North for they are now three points behind Sheffield United with only a few weeks to go. There still is a definite chance, but the Blues must rise to the occasion tomorrow when they visit Huddersfield Town. Slips by the United are needed to help Everton’s cause, but in the meantime the Blues must not drop any more points. The rearguard is unchanged for the Leeds-road game, but Secretary-Manager Mr. Theo Kelly is not yet able to announce the constitution of the attack. It is possible that young Billy Higgins, the New Ferry lad, will get another run. The team travel to Germany on Monday will be “as usual,” with Stan Bentham at centre forward. So far as Huddersfield is concerned I think Everton can and will win, but chances must not be wasted.
Tommy Jones, Everton’s Welsh International centre-half, will be demobilised from the Royal Air Force in less than four weeks, and the fact that he is gradually playing himself back to his top form suggests that he will be recalled for the international match with Ireland at Cardiff on May 4.
EVERTON’S FINE FOOTBALL
March 25, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
Win at Huddersfield
Huddersfield Town 0, Everton 1 (Higgins)
Viewing the Everton one-goal victory at Huddersfield in cold print would lead one into the belief that the game had been a stern duel between two well balanced sides, whereas, in actual fact, Everton’s win was much more easily won. Bur for a slice of misfortune when Stevenson was injured, he pulled a muscle in the first half, and a blow on the nose to Mercer which caused much bleeding and some unnecessary robust play by one or two of Huddersfield’s defenders, Everton’s would I am sure, have won a really handsome victory, for up to the time of these happenings they played superlative football against a team which had little to commend it other than enthusiasm. Three times a Huddersfield man had to be taken to task by the referee for “playing the man,” and not the ball. It was not a nice sight, but tells how desperate Huddersfield were to smash up their opponent’s schemes. Wainwright was particularly harshly dealt with and Higgins took more bumps than was necessary. Yet it was he who produced the only goal of the match and kept Everton in the race for the championship. His was a heavy task, but he shouldered it bravely, and brought into his play ideas which promised well for his future career, I liked the way he slipped the ball back to his inside colleagues when he found his bath barred. More experience is all he needs just now.
That he can keep his head at the critical moment was seen when he scored his goal. To have been flurried or excited and that important goal may not have been scored. But let me tell you about it. A free kick saw the ball coming up the middle. Clegg, the Town goalkeeper, saw the danger signal and came out of goal, but Higgins calmly scooped the ball over his head and into the net. A wild drive would most probably have hit the goalkeeper or gone soaring over the bar. Higgins took that goal like an experienced player, definitely a player who uses his brain. Don’t think for one moment that the Everton goal was easy to keep intact; for there were many tense moments in front of Burnett, none more so than when Price shot against the keeper’s legs, collected the rebound and slashed it back into the goal. Who could save a goal? Greenhalgh supplied the answer. He rushed in and kicked the ball away. It ran across his goal-line and actually tumbled up against the far upright and came out. Humphreys was the rock on which the Huddersfield attack spilt itself, and Watson and Mercer kept their forwards moving with “carpet” passes. Wainwright was not so good as he can be –I wonder dogs he prefer soft going –but Fielding was brilliant in the first half, often finding the man in the open space with judicious passes. Owing to his injury Stevenson will not be able to accompany his colleagues today for their games at Munster, Germany on Wednesday and Rawlings will take his place. The team with their chairman W. Gibbons, their director, E. Green and the Secretary-Manager T. Kelly are due to leave Speke Airport this morning at 10’ o’clock. Attendance 15,664. Huddersfield; Clegg, goal; Bailey and Simmons (John), backs; Barker, Book and Watson (A.), half-backs; Brook, Price, Carr, and Poole, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Mercer, Humphreys, and Watson, half-backs; Stevenson, Wainwright, Higgins, Fielding and Boyes forwards. Referee; Mr. Dureden.
• Liverpool lost to Middlesbrough 2-1, Nieuwenhuys, for Liverpool and Fenton (2) for Middlesbrough.
• Everton “A” 4, Liverpool “A” 2
March 25, 1946. The Evening Express
There is no disputing the fact that Everton are a great side. The 1-0 success at Huddersfield was as good any anything the title challengers have accomplished this season. From a football point of view the Town were never in it and had Everton had a full team all through they would have won more convincing. Mercer was off the fielding having attention to his nose when Billy Higgins hooked through the winner over Clegg’s head with the confidence of a veteran and 10 minutes before half-time Stevenson was injured when shooting and was no more than a passenger for the remainder. The Everton defence was wonderful when Town applied the pressure, and throughout the proceedings Everton played with a confidence and skill which drew the admiration of the Yorkshire folk. I am still taking Everton to gain that championship, and it they do they will send a vote of thanks to Bury for holding Sheffield to a 2-2 draw at Gigg-lane.
EVERTON BRIGHTEN TITLE HOPES
March 25, 1946. The Evening Express
Everton’s brilliant victory at Huddersfield on Saturday, despite carrying two injured players, has re-opened the entire championship position, and with only two points to make up on the leaders, Sheffield United, the Blues are right there again with a golden chance. It is going to be a glorious finale, with every match literally a cup-tie. Meanwhile Everton get a little break from title matters for, as I mentioned a week ago, the team set out by air from Speke today for Munster, where they play the B.A.O.R on Wednesday and fly home again on Thursday. Unfortunately for Stevenson he missed the trip though –injury, his place being taken by Syd Rawlings, Bentham is the centre forward, and the rest of the team is as on Saturday, although mercer has a sore nose because of a bang at Leeds-road.
March 25, 1946. The Liverpool Mercury
Just at a time when Everton could well do without injuries along they come to upset the even tenor of their way. Catterick’s strained ligament has shown great improvement during the last few days, but that good news is darkened to Stevenson’s pulled muscle at Huddersfield. Catterick’s in ability to play against Sheffield Wednesday undoubtedly accounted for their loss of two points. Stevenson’s misfortune almost cost Everton a point at Huddersfield, for it was after the injury that the Town became a danger for the first time. With a complete team Everton had outplayed and out manoeuvred Huddersfield by they high-class football but with “Stevie” limping on the wing for an hour Everton lost some of their power. There was no comparison between the two sides. Everton exploiting every avenue of scientific football, looked “good business” against the Town’s more robust. His skilful play and one visualised a thumping good victory for Everton, for goals always looked like coming from their skilful play. Remembering what the “Town” team used to be in the days of Clem Stephenson and company, one could not help but notice the slump in their play. Huddersfield won three championships in succession by their football ability. I cannot think of the present team winning even one on their present-day form (Writes Stork) for it lacks the method which make up into a sound football team. Booting the ball hard and hoping for the best is not sound tactics, yet that is how the Yorkshire men hoped to beat Everton’s good football played on the ground. It would never have had a chance but for Stevenson’s injury. The boy of the team kept Everton’s championship bid real, by scoring the all-important goal, and the manner of his scoring was almost as important as the goal, for it showed that Higgins uses his grey matter in his football workings. He might have tried to blame the trail to goal with a better drive. Had he done so it was almost bound to have failed for Clegg had come out and narrowed his angle. There was only one thing to do – lob. Don’t forget this lad was playing only his second League game. Lob he did, and a goal was his reward.
EVERTON WIN IN GERMANY
March 28, 1946. The Liverpool Daily Post
Match at Munster
Everton 3, B.A.O.R 2
Everton’s visit to Germany to play a B.A.O.R side at Munster yesterday attracted a crowd of 38,000 and they saw the Goodison Park side win the odd goal in five in glorious weather. Both teams played good football, and at the interval Everton led 2-1, goals having been scored by Wainwright and Boyes for the visitors and by Ward (Derby County) for the Army. In the second half, play was evenly contested with each side netting once. Bentham for Everton and Duggan (Luton Town) for the Service club. The game was attended by the Acting Divisional Commander, Brigadier Freyberg. The teams were; B.A.O.R; Langford (Millwall), goal; Compton (Arsenal) and Hughes (Birmingham), backs; Jones (Bury), Williams (Chester) and Ward (Derby County), half-backs; Earl (Unattached), Duggan (Luton Town), Harrison (Burnley), Steel (Morton), and Boxall (Queen’s Park Rangers), forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (Captain), backs; Mercer, Humphreys, and Watson, half-backs; Rawlings, Wainwright, Bentham, Fielding and Boyes, forwards. Referee; Mr. Private Wileman (R.A.S.C).
• Liverpool lost 3-2 to Burnley; Done, Fagan, for Liverpool and Morris, Jackson, and Knight in extra time for Burnley.
EVERTON IN GERMANY
March 28, 1946. The Evening Express
Everton beat a Combined Services team in Germany 3-2. Wainwright, Boyes and Bentham scoring.
Everton “A” (v Fazackerley at Bellefield); J. A. Jones; Prescot, Purvis; Hill, Falder, Dunroe; Arthur, Elliott, C. Birmingham, Rothwell, Keanan.
Everton Colts (v. Unity Boys Club at Greenhill-road, Mossley Hill); Kay; Jones (T.), Rankin; Tansey, Farrar, Street; Swain, J. Makin, Macaulay, Hannan, Myers.
March 28, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
Everton have the distinction of being the first side to defeat the hitherto unbeaten B.A.O.R team, the Blues winning 3-2 at Munster yesterday. Close on 40,000 spectators saw a grand game. Wainwright, Boyes and Bentham were scorers for the visitors. The B.A.O.R side is composed of League players, including a couple of internationals.
March 29, 1946. The Liverpool Echo
In the soccer world we get back to League warfare, and in the League North main interest rests in the struggle between Everton and Sheffield United for the leadership. United have now been pulled back to a two point advantage, and there are nine games to go, including tomorrow’s. Having won at Huddersfield last week it looks a reasonable thing to anticipate that Everton will complete the double in the return at Goodison Park. Everybody got back from the Munster trip in good trim, with the satisfaction of having been the first team to beat the B.A.O.R lads. Huddersfield did not impress me particularly when they were at Anfield just before Christmas, and Liverpool won very comfortably. They away record is not so sparkling, and though they put up a good show last week, with ground advantage Everton should further consolidate their position. Every point from now on will be valuable. The Blues must be ready to take advantage of any possible slip by their rivals, though Sheffield are hardly likely to drop any points tomorrow, when they are home to Bury. Johnson make another of his infrequent first-team appearances, owing to Stevenson’s injury. Now he is demobbed we may be bearing more of this winger, who has performed promisingly in previous games. Team; Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Johnson, Wainwright, Bentham or Higgins, Fielding, Boyes. Huddersfield Town;- (from) –Clegg; Bailey, Simpson (John); Barker, Boot, Watson (A), Bateman, Glazzard, Brook, Price, Carr, Poole, Simpson (jas).
Everton’s Central league side (Huddersfield away); Sagar; Hedley, Curwen; Sweeney, Lindley, Davies; Rawlings, Grant, Higgins or S. Wright, Lyon, Owen (W).
March 29, 1946. The Evening Express
Tomorrow we re-welcome Huddersfield Town to Goodison Park, where the Blues strive for their sixth “double” of the season; next Wednesday the Blues travel to Bradford for the postponed game and on the Saturday they will be at home to Chesterfield. Hard matches all, but still well within the capacity of a side, injury-battered at the moment –Catterick and Stevenson are out –but playing with supreme confidence. That 1-0 win was at Huddersfield last week was an amazingly good performance, for Everton had two players injured, and I think they can do it again. The team doubt affects centre-forward, and either Stan Bentham or Billy Higgins will handle the task. Town bring along plenty of stars, including Price, one of the game’s deadliest shots and the new star Bateman. There should be another crowd well over 40,000, for Huddersfield always were a fine attraction on Merseyside and Everton are drawing people like a magnet draws steel fittings. The game starts at three o’clock. Team; Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Johnson, Wainwright, Bentham or Higgins, Fielding, Boyes. Huddersfield Town;- (from) –Clegg; Bailey, Simpson (John); Barker, Boot, Watson (A), Bateman, Glazzard, Brook, Price, Carr, Poole, Simpson (jas).
TWO GOALS IN 90 SECONDS
March 30, 1946. The Evening Express
There was a sensational start in the Football League match at Goodison Park today, where Everton entertained Huddersfield Town. Within 30 seconds Higgins had given Everton the lead, but within 90 seconds Glazzard had equalised. The Town changed their three inside forward positions, Glazzard being one of the newcomers, while Brook led the attack in place of Price. The news of the day is that Harry Catterick resumes light training next week; that Stevenson’s pulled muscle is on the mend; that Mr. Ernest Green, director, was always scouting; that Everton go to Belfast to play the Rangers on May 7. The secondary School Final takes place at Goodison Park on Monday afternoon. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson (TG), half-backs; Johnson, Wainwright, Higgins, Fielding, and Boyes, forwards. Huddersfield Town; Clegg, goal; Bailey and Simpson, backs; Barker, Boot, and Watson (A), half-backs; Bateman, Glazzard, Brook, Carr and Poole, forwards. Referee; Mr. R. Duerden (Morecambe). In a dramatic opening Brooks immediately raced through on his own, only to be checked by Humphreys and away went Wainwright to spread open the Town defence. The ball was worked back via Fielding to Greenhalgh who punted well up the middle. Higgins and Boot went to it but before Boot could make his tackle Higgins hit home at splendid left-foot shot, which caught the far post and bounded into the net.
Everton made another brief raid in which Higgins just failed to connect with a header, and then Town raced through for the equaliser, with Poole being the engineer. Lateness in tackling enabled Poole to come in close and centre along the floor and then uncertainty in interception gave Glazzard the chance to step in and slide the ball through from short range. It was a simple goal taken at a moment when Everton seemed to be too busy celebrating their own success. Johnson lobbed over a fine centre which Poole got away and then Wainwright went too far under the ball. Burnett took charge of another centre from Poole, and Fielding pleased with a grand cross-field run before being crowded out. Everton had a narrow escape when Bateman centre, for Jackson stood still and Carr dashed in. Fortunately Burnett had spotted the danger and he raced to take the ball off Carr’s toes. Away went Everton for Fielding to put Higgins through in joyous style. Higgins shot as he was tackled, but Clegg saved at full length. Everton regained the lead in 20 minutes through Wainwright. It was the long ball up the middle which did it again, and Higgins leapt high in the manner of a Dean to flick the ball forward to Wainwright to race through and drive into the net.
Poole again got the better of Jackson and Mercer, and his centre came across to Bateman, who took a shot on the full volley Burnett diving across for a really magnificent save.