OLDHAM ATHLETIC 2, EVERTON 0
November 1, 1950. The Liverpool Daily Post
Gemmill Goals Beat Everton
Everton’s Central League side were shocked by an Oldham Athletic goal after 2 minutes in this replayed first round Lancashire Senior Cup-tie at Oldham yesterday, and apart from one bright spell just after the interval, never looked like saving the game. Gemmill, a bustling leader, scored with a great cross shot which left Everton’s goalkeeper Leyfield, helpless and but for goal-line saves by full backs Rankin and Saunders, Everton would have had to face a bigger interval deficit than one goal. Parker and Hold strove hard to being some force to the Everton attack in the first half but the finishing was weak and, it was not until the second half that the Oldham defence were seriously troubled. Then, for the space of ten minutes Everton played with much determination and Parker was unlucky when he headed the ball against the post. Hickson later saw a low shot go across the face of the goal with no one up to apply the finishing touch. Oldham gradually regained their grip and they were worth a second goal which came after eight-four minutes, also from Gemmill, who found the net via the post. Oldham; Ogden, goal; Naylor and Bell, backs; Goodfellow, Whyte, and Smith, half-backs; McLlvenny, Wadsworth, Gemmill, Haddington, and Ormond, forwards. Everton; Leyland, goal; Saunders and Rankin, backs; JF Cross, Falder and Bentham, half-backs; McNamara, Hold, Hickson, Hampton, and Parker, forwards.
November 1, 1950. The Evening Express
With the defeat of Everton20 by Oldham Athletic at Boundary Park yesterday, in the replay 1st round tie of the Lancashire Senior Cup, the City lost all interest in the trophy for this season. Everton’s defeat yesterday was due to forward failings for a tame game there was only one period when they looked like rubbing out Oldham’s shock opening goal which came after two minutes play when Gemmill left Leyland helpless with a grand cross shot. The Athletic leader added a second after 84 minutes when the home side had regained their grip on the game.
HIGGINS TO SEE F.A.
November 2, 1950. The Liverpool Echo
To Consider His Application for Re-Instatement
Billy Higgins, Everton’s Bogota “tourist” has been anxiously awaiting a reply to his application for reinstatement by the Football Association. I hear that he has received a letter from the F.A. requesting him to travel to London, next week, to meet the F.A commission sitting on his case. Since his return Higgins has been spending quite a lot of his time in the Bangor area, and it may be more than rumour that when he is free he will join up with Bangor City. Should he do so, he will link up with former colleague in Norman Greenhalgh, one time captain of Everton. Peter Corr and Cecil Wyles. Iorweth Hughes, who has been chosen to keep goal for Wales against England at Roker Park on Wednesday, November 15, once went to Goodison Park on trial on the recommendation of Tommy Jones, but was allowed to go when his trial was ended, and then went to Luton.
WAINWRIGHT GOES HOME
November 3, 1950. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Eddie Wainwright, the Everton inside-right, who has been in a nursing home for the breaking down of adhesions in a knee, went home today and manager Cliff Britton has high hopes that he will be fit to play again next week-end.
Cyril Lello, the Everton half-back, will have his second game of the season, when he appears in the Central League side v Manchester United at Goodison Park. Lello suffered a pre-season knee injury, and played at Huddersfield on September 2, but had to go off before half-time. Subsequently Lello underwent a cartilage operation with success, and now returns after being absent for eight weeks.
EVERTON AT BLACKPOOL
November 3, 1950. The Liverpool Echo
The “rub of the green” continues to dog Everton for they gave a grand display against the recognized best football team in the country, Manchester United, at Goodison Park last week, yet suffered a 4-1 defeat. Surely the turn in the tide must come at any moment now, but is it reasonable to expect it at Bloomfield Road? Last year Everton won there when least expected, and history has a habit of repeating itself. Everton seem to be able to match any side in football skill for a good part of the game but seem to “fade” in the last quarter of an hour. Everton’s record against Blackpool is distinctly good, for they have scored nine goals in their last three meetings, I hope the good work goes on tomorrow for points are badly needed out Goodison Park way. Blackpool are variable, they can be excellent, but on the other hand can be moderate. They like Everton, have lost the art of goal scoring. Stan Mortensen, who rarely missed a chance last term, has taken to missing them, and when he fails there are not many others to take up the task of beating the opposition goalkeeper. Blackpool; Farm; Shinwell, Garrett; Johnston, Hayward, Kelly; Matthews, Mudie, Mortensen, W.J. Slater, Perry. Everton; Burnett; Clinton, Moore; Grant, Jones, Farrell; Buckle, Fielding, McIntosh, Potts, Eglington.
BLACKPOOL FOUND EVERTON GOAL IN 30 SECONDS AND WENT BACK THREE TIMES
November 4, 1950. The Liverpool Football Echo
Blackpool 4, Everton 0
Everton never suggested a repeat of last year’s victory, for there was no forward thrust –the old, old story. Blackpool; Farm, goal; Shimwell and Garrett, backs; Johnston, Hayward, and Kelly, half-backs; Matthews, Mudie, Mortsensen, W.J. Slater, and Perry, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Clinton and Moore, backs; Grant, Jones and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Buckle, Fielding, McIntosh, Potts and Eglington, forwards. Referee; Mr. A.E. Ellis (Halifax).
There was an early thrill at Bloomfield Road for prior to the opening of the game a small fire started in the Press Box. It was put out by the fireman before the arrival of three fire engines and caused no damage. Neither team had a change. There was neither wind nor sun to cause any disadvantage to either team, so everything was set for a keen contest. This was Farm’s conjure of games Blackpool, and the first Blackpool goalkeeper ever to do so. The second thrill of the day came in the first thirty seconds when Moore allowed himself to be beaten by Matthews who slipped the ball forward to Mudie who hit a cross shot and although Burnett dived to save the ball, it had crossed the line before he made contact. This was one of the fastest goals I have ever seen, for it was registered in exactly 30 seconds. This was indeed a hard blow for Everton, who for the next few minutes were kept entirely on the defensive, and Mudie had another opening much more acceptable than the first, but this time he shot outside. Everton then made their first attack, and they engineered a corner, which, however, was disposed of. Everton kept the ball in the Blackpool goalmouth, and Grant from just outside the penalty area shot high and wide. Matthews again got the better of Moore, and he tried to give Mudie another opportunity, but this time the pass was intercepted.
In Bright Mood
The Johnston-Matthews-Mudie right wing was in one of its brightest moods, and this was the striking force of the Blackpool attack. Farrell tried to bring Eglington’s speed into effect, but the winger could not master the Blackpool defence. It was shortly after this that Mortensen found himself through. He put everything he had behind his shot, but Burnett dropped down on the ball and saved. McIntosh on the extreme left swept the ball over to the right, but Potts was outpaced by Garrett. So far it had been mainly Blackpool, and Farm had not had a single shot to deal with. He might have been called to duty when Potts shot only to see the ball rattle against Johnston’s legs and remain there until he finally got rid of it. Buckle was the first to test Farm with a curling shot, but Farm caught it. A ticklish shot it was too. Everton had come more into the game without giving Blackpool a great deal of anxiety. Slater was going through to what appeared a certain goal when he seemed to stop dead nearly in the penalty area. A free kick was awarded to Blackpool outside the area. What the infringement was I cannot say. A missed header by a Blackpool man set Everton on the attack and Buckle forced Farm to make a top class save near the post.
Work of the Master
Perry curled one a yard outside the upright and Slater, when careering off, was pulled up by Clinton. McIntosh tried a hook shot, which went outside. Matthews had been quiet for a time, but the way he pulled the ball down with one foot, and transferred it to the other, was the work of the master. His through pass was captured before it reached Mortensen. Blackpool had lost some of the sparkle of the first few minutes. Or was it that the Everton defence had gained confidence following that shock goal? When Clinton missed his kick, he let in Perry, but Burnett took his angular shot securely. Jones was giving Mortensen little scope. Slater should have shot when he was only a matter of yards but Buckle beat his way through the Blackpool defence, got to within half a dozen yards of Farm, and shot for the far side of the goal. Farm brought off a grand save, when it did not look possible. Shimwell beat both Eglington and Potts, but the Irishman almost produced the equalizer when he shot and the ball beat Farm. The ball struck the bar and bounced out. It was a near squeak for Blackpool. Farm made another good save from Farrell, when Everton were testing the Pool defence to the full, and it did not look convincing. Buckle came along with another shot, but it had no power behind it. Everton fought valiantly for the equalizer in the last few minutes.
Half-time; Blackpool 1, Everton nil.
Farrell, who had been the best player on the field, was responsible for a perfect clearance in the first minute of the second half. Moore beat Matthews and then Farrell kidded the Blackpool star by allowing the ball to pass between his legs for a goal kick. Matthews linked, and linked too long, for he allowed the Everton defence to gather and to accept the obvious centre. He did better in the next minute when he flipped the ball out to Mudie who centred right across goal, and Mortensen should have scored, instead of tapping the ball outside. Potts tried to brush his way through, but Garrett stepped in front of him and took the ball. A free kick against Everton was lobbed outside by Mortensen, who made some amends when he headed neatly for the far side of the Everton goal but Burnett touched the ball outside. Within three minutes of the hour, Blackpool went further ahead when a Mudie shot was headed beyond the Everton goalkeeper, following extreme Blackpool pressure. Burnett had no change with this goal. Fielding-McIntosh and Potts almost produced an Everton goal. The last named’s effort –taken in a hurry – flashed outside. Burnett came out to collar a long ball from Perry just before Mortensen appeared on the scene. Potts, when lying on the ground, got in his shot and Farm was only too glad to concede a corner. Potts won a second corner which was valueness, I have seen Matthews in better form, but when he does make a move it generally has something behind it. He once again beat Moore, but curled his centre outside. Everton had not done much this half, and when Fielding sent McIntosh away the centre-forward from the outside left position flashed the ball across the Blackpool goal-face. Shimwell beat Eglington and when Mortsensen drifted out to the right wing Matthews slipped inside to urge the ball on to Perry, whose shot was saved by Burnett.
A little hesitancy on the part of the Everton defence almost let Mudie sneaked through. The little inside right got his compensation when he took Johnston’s throw-in to hook the ball into the Everton net at 77 minutes. Everton attacked for a time, but the Blackpool defence was never really seriously troubled. Matthews had a shot saved by Burnett but the fourth goal was not long delayed, Perry scoring with a long shot at 86 minutes. Final; Blackpool 4, Everton nil.
EVERTON RES V. MANCHESTER UNITED RES
November 4, 1950. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton Res; O’Neill, goal; Bentham and Rankin, backs; Cross, Humphreys and Lello, half-backs; Gibson, Hold, Hickson, Hampson, and Parker, forwards. Manchester United Res; Crompton, goal; McNulty and Redman, backs; Whitefoot, Jones and Lowrie, half-backs; Birkett, Clempson, Cassidy, Downie, ad Byrne, forwards. Referee; Mr. W. Clements (West Bromwich). Everton had Lello in their side today after his injury eight weeks ago. Play was mainly confined to midfield with both sets of halves being kept quite busy. Byrne gave the visitors the lead after 15 minutes with a fine header. The United were the more impressive side and Clempson increased their lead, adding a third nine minutes later.
Half-time; Everton Res nil, Manchester United Res 3.
After the interval Manchester did all the attacking until Everton took up the initiative and Hickson reduced the lead. Gibson added a second. Full time; Everton Res 4, Man United Res 3.
COLOMBIANS PUSH, ELBOW, OBSTRUCT –BUT PLAY THEIR OWN GAME
November 4, 1950. The Liverpool Football Echo
Billy Higgins Continues His Bogota Story
By Billy Higgins
In an Interview with Ranger
My early disclosure of the scenes which characterize needle games in Colombian appear to have given rise to the assumption that the game as played out there must be “dirty.” This is not so. Although the players are extremely excitable and fights frequently occur, really vicious fouls are rare. There is a lot of pushing and elbowing, and obstruction galore, none of which is ever penalized by native referees, but I rarely saw any really dangerous play. Now and again there may be a spot of sly ankle-tapping but that is about all. The most serious foul I saw was when Bobby Flavell was butted in the face. Bobby, normally a very even-tempered fellow saw red when that happened and attempted to strike the offender. They went into a clinch, as usual over there, in half a minute a dozen or more players had started a similar “demonstrations.” Eventually order was restored and Bobby and his opponents received marching orders. The pair of them were suspended for a fortnight. Most of the native Colombian referees seem afraid to send anybody off the field. There are two reasons for that. In the first place they fear reprisals from the crowd and the offending players’ colleagues. Secondly, if they sent players off for fighting, very few matches would ever be completed. There wouldn’t be enough players left on the field. A favourite dodge of the Argentinians when their side is winning and the end is near is for a player to “collapse” and a solutely refuse to get up. I have seen this done when there has not been another player within yards of the “injured” man, I have also seen the player on the ground, when asked by the referee to carry on, push him aside and say “vamos, vamos” (go away). The five English referees who were out there during my stay did their best to encourage a higher standard of sportsmanship and tried to enforce the rules in the proper way. They had an uphill task. For a time, while the novelty of their control was fresh, they did effect a definite improvement but towards the end of my stay the standard seemed to be falling back again. Presumably the natives prefer their own methods and interpretations. At any rate they all seem to relish the rows, and squabbles that go on. To them it is part and parcel of the game. One English referee who decided he would stand no nonsense and would interpret the rules according to the English manner, had the pluck to give a penalty in his first match. You never heard such an uproar in your life. The game was stopped for fully ten minutes. Spectators swarmed over the wire fence, players argued the toss in benches all over the field, and a big man, well over six feet dashed into the middle and seized the referee by the scruff, of the neck. The position looked decidedly ominous for a time though eventually order was restored without anybody being hurt. The irony of it all was that the penalty was missed. After the match was over as the referee, went back to the dressing room the hefty man waved at him, grinned all over his face, and shouted “sorry boss.” But it was a very uncomfortable ten minutes for the man in the middle. The first match I played for Millionarios was against Cali at Cali on Sunday, May 21. This town is situated at a much lover altitude than Bogota and the heat was terrific. It took us two hours by plane to get there. After playing 75 minutes, during which time I was consistently cold-shouldered and starved –I got only one pass the whole time and that a bad one –I was taken off by the Argentinian skipper and a substitute was brought on.
It was reported in papers in England at the time that I had collapsed from the heat after 15 minutes. This is not correct. Although I felt the heat very much, I could have carried on the finish. Millionarios lost the match 6-1 which was a real shock. It led to all sorts of rumours that the game had been “sold” I am not in a position to express any opinion on that. My ignorable of Spanish meant that I could not follow the many and heated arguments which went on but there certainly seemed to be a right novel “to do” about it all. As previously detailed it had early been made obvious to me in the training sessions that I was up against it in a big way. That fact was further emphasized in this Cali game. An Englishman in business in Bogota whose name I cannot give because he is still out there, told me that he had heard on good authority that the Argentinians had decided no matter how long I remained with Millionarios that they would refuse to co-operate with me. They feared my arrival might be the start of an invasion by English players which would eventually take their jobs away from them. Maybe one cannot blame them, but it certainty put me in a tough spot. Anybody knows that if the rest of the side make a dead set at a colleague and particularly a centre forward he is not going to have much chance of making a name for himself. The opposition was nothing like so pronounced at Sante Fe, where Franklin, Mountford and later Charlie Mitten were playing. It was not so bad even with the Millionarios players in the case of Bobby Flavell when he came out, though he had to master some opposition. It seemed that I was the unlucky one to be dropped on as a sort of scapegoat. Naturally I did not intend to take this lying down. I meant to put up a fight if possible. The language difficulty, however, was an almost insuperable barrier. There was no team manager to whom one could go and it was pretty nearly hopeless to try to get my point of view over to the directors of the club. Often enough when I endeavoured to see the board there was no interpreter. On top of that, there was also a cleavage between the directors on the subject of importing English players. One or two of them were not sorry that I did not do well in my first game. Despite this I resolved to keep pegging away and hope for the best. But it was a losing battle. I played in the next four games, and each time was called off the field by the Argentian captain about 20 minutes from the end. In all these games I never got an atom of support. It was a calculated campaign to discredit me in the eyes of the directors and the spectators, but there was nothing I could do except grin and bear it. Frequently when I was standing unmarked in a good position and called for the ball the man in possession would look up, glare and then deliberately pass it elsewhere, often to a man in an infinitely worse position than myself. I learned later that an additional reason for the hostility of the Argentinains was that I had been brought out to replace one of their countrymen. Though he had been off form, he was extremely popular with the rest of the players, and they wanted him back. After these five games, I was relegated to the bench, which means that I travelled as reserve to be called on, if required as a substitute. After being “on the bench” for five matches I was not even put on for this duty. I was left to cool my heels for several weeks, fed up and unhappy until we played a friendly game with the champions team of Equador. To my surprise I was chosen as centre forward for this match. Even to this day I don’t know why. We won 3-1 and I had the good fortune to score all three goals. I was told by a couple of directors through the interpreter I had played very well and that I was sure o be in the team the next week. This bucked me up considerably but another blue was yet to fall. At the directors meeting a few days later it was decided to appoint a “technical director,” equivant to our team manager. They chosen an Argentinian player who had previously shown quite clearly that he preferred my room to my company, on or off the field. I knew than that I had finally “had it” for good and that it was hopeless to go on struggling any further, I decided to ask for my contract to be terminated. This was in early part of August and for the next six weeks I was involved in a series of wrangles which I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. Times without number I tried to see the directors to get the whole wretched business thrashed out. When I managed to catch them all together, I was put off by the excuse that they had not been able to get an interpreter. When an interpreter was present I was told the matter could not be discussed because the president was absent. Next time it was shelved because of the absence of some other officials. This sort of thing went on until I was heartily sick of the whole business and if I had the money I should have come home without fighting for the balance of my signing on fee. As it was with not enough to get home on, I was bound to stick there until I got some satisfaction. Eventually I had to take a much reduced sum, though I must add that the club also paid the fares home for my wife and family. When I contrast all this squabbling and wrangling with conditions on this country, I realize more than ever that English players even though they don’t get as much as many feel they should, are in a paradise compared with Colombia. In the country the players can see his club manager any time, without fuss or difficulty. He can talk things over, put his own point of view and if necessary see the board of directors should the matter be of vital importance. There may be odd exceptions but in the vast majority of cases English players get a square deal from their clubs at all times. Naturally now and again a player feels browned off and thinks maybe, he has not been treated as generously as he might have been. Folks in all walks of life feel that way at times. But you can take it from me that after my experience I have realized that English players all things considered, have very little at which to grumble.
The final installments of Higgins story will be given next week.
THEY STILL LACK DEVIL
October 6, 1950. The Liverpool Daily Post
Blackpool 4, Everton 0
For some weeks we have been noting Everton’s good football, yet another defeat must be recorded. The side’s main fault stands out like a beacon –lack of “devil” near goal. With the exception of 15 minutes of the first half, the Blackpool defence was never worried. Farm making his 100th successive appearance in Blackpool goal, had only a few anxious moments yet Everton’s football was almost as good as that of their opponents. True, a thirty seconds goal did them great harm for a shock of that nature must have its effect. Everton tried hard enough but they seem mortally afraid that a single slip may bring tragedy. It was a slip by Moore that enabled Matthews to produce the pass which brought the first goal. You have to be ultra clever to outsmart the maestro Moore could have swept the ball clear, but instead he pitted his skill against Matthews and the latter won. He slipped the ball to Mudie. Although Burnley stopped the shot the ball had crossed the line by a foot. The whole movement came so quickly Burnett was stationed at the other side of the goal and in my view did well to reach the ball when he did. Without Matthews Blackpool would hardly have scored four goals, for he was the starting point of all of them. Mortensen has gone back he was not the quick-silver forward he used to be and young Jones generally had the measure of him, although Mortensen got a goal. Mudie’s second goal was a hit or miss sort of affair, but that does not excuses Everton for they had their chances. Buckle was clean through on one occasion, and Eglington’s shot hit the woodwork with Farm beaten. The crux of the matter is that Everton forwards need more “bite” Potts showed improvement on his two previous games, but has not brought the striking power into the line –Everton’s need at the moment.
• Everton Res 4, Manchester United Res 3
• Everton “A” 1, Liverpool A” 1 (Abandoned after extra time), George Mahon Cup First round
• Everton “D” 2, Earl United 2 (after Extra time)
November 6, 1950. The Liverpool Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
There must be something more than mere opposition superiority to account for the fact that both Liverpool and Everton have conceded eight goals apiece in their last two goals, and I think that speed to action and strength of action are in part responsible. With Everton it was the old story of one mistake shattering their confidence and lack of thrust preventing a recovery. The story which colleague Radar brought back from Blackpool was not exactly heartening, but read for yourselves;
“The simple answer to this latest Everton failure, defensive shortcomings excepted, was that apart from one ten-minute period just before the interval, during which Eglington struck the bar, the forwards just did not promise to translate their approach work into goals. Goodness knows one could not accuse the Everton men of not trying. They gave everything they had, and mighty Peter Farrell was all out in a 90 minute bid to inspire his colleagues. Individual cleverness there was plenty, but almost every attack came to grief with he finishing effort. “Eglington’s striking the bar was just another example of the breaks going against the Blues, but at the same time, one must be frank and say that this one shot and a couple from Buckle, simply served to emphasizes the paucity of real scoring attempts by the confidence-lacking Everton attack. The fact that the defence has conceded 39 goals in 16 games speaks for itself. After that fatal opening mistake which let in Matthews to provide Mudie with a shock goal, Moore did as well as the majority may expect to do against the inimitable Stanley, for the remainder of the first half but he lapsed into indecision as the game wore on. Clinton was rarely comfortable against Perry and Burnett’s display was marred only by his failure to appreciate the position when Blackpool scored their first goal. “Grant grafted persistency, but without an undue measure of success, and possibly the most-encouraging feature was the way in which Jones clamped down on the Mortensen menace, although it must be admitted that “morty” was only a shadow of his real self. Fielding was the best of the Everton attack, and he had hard luck with one good header which came back off a defender. It is difficult to see the silver-lining for Everton. Still the Blues keep trying and had a talent-spotter in Scotland on Saturday, so the work goes on, a fact which the shareholders’ Association which has just elected Mr. J. Taylor as president, will learn with pleasure.
THE OLD STORY
November 6, 1950. The Liverpool Echo
It was the old, old story at Bloomfield Road, plenty of endeavour; some good football which was with that of Blackpool, but no one to finish it off with the one thing that counts – goals. Hard luck stories in consolation with Everton are becoming thread-bare. Week in and week out reports tell of Everton’s good football yet the result column shot a defeat. They were not four goals behind Blackpool so far as the science of the game was concerned, but the score board is the only thing which counts in table position. The road to recovery is becoming harder to tread with each defeat. A team so situated as Everton can have little confidence to itself. The burden they have to carry is weighting them down. Each and every player is doing his utmost to bring about a turn to the tide but that is just not good enough. Some shooters are essential. Without then good football counts for nought, we had another example of that against Blackpool (writes Stork). With Matthews out of the side Blackpool would never have scored four goals, I don’t say they would not have won, but certainly not by so big a margin, for it was the old “maestro of the dribble” who produced the passes that brought three of them. A goal against in 30 seconds was not the best of tonics for Everton, but it did not stifle their enthusiasm entirely. It was naturally a shock but they lived I down, and in the last fifteen minutes of the first half they had Blackpool struggling hard up hold their narrow lead, and were lucky not to lose it, for an Eglington shot had everyone beaten until it bumped up against the woodwork and came out. Then there was Buckle’s shot, which was deflected right into Farm’s hands when he was otherwise beaten. Mudle’s first goal was a curious one in that Burnett saved the shot, but not before the ball had crossed the line. It was the element of surprise which had him out of position. Moore had the inevitable task of facing Matthews – no full back looks forward to that task – and when he tried to beat Matthews by cleverness he failed –hundreds of others with greater experiences have done the same – and the maestro took full advantage to make the pass to Mudie to shake Everton’s confidence. In midfield Everton produced moves quite the equal of anything Blackpool produced, but near goal they played their shortcomings –no marksmen to apply the finishing touch. The chances were there, but not the man to take them. It was a hard fight, and although Everton never gave up, they had to stage a defensive battle, and that was when Matthews came into his own. I began to wonder just what was required to beat this amazing veteran. To go to him courted disaster; to hold off brought no better result –and Norman Greenhalgh has supplied the answer to my knowledge. Mortensen has gone right off his game. Where were the electric dashes? Not there on Saturday. He got a headed goal through a deflection but he is not the defence spitting Mortensen he was. If I had to pick out the best man on the field, I would take Farrell. He shouldered everyone’s job and along with Matthews was the outstanding man on the field. Mudie’s second goal was a bow at a tenure –it could have gone anywhere. Everton were out searching on Saturday. I hope their travels have been successful. I ran into Mr. Ike Robinson at Blackpool. What was his mission? Could it be that he was talent spotting for prospective England players for the match with Wales at Roker Park next week, it could be, you know.
November 8, 1950. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton have Billy Higgins, their local born centre-forward on the transfer list, on which he was placed in the spring. The joint commission of the F.A. and Football Association, while dealt with Higgins application, for the lifting the suspension which followed his trip to Bogota, announced that the suspension would terminate on November 30. The F.A. statement added that “meanwhile Higgins remains an Everton player on the open-to-transfer list. Everton may not pay wages to Higgins from the time he left this country, in May until his suspension is lifted. Higgins action in joining a club of a country not affiliated to F.I.F.A is deprecated.” Manager Cliff Britton who attended the commission in Everton’s interest, states that the Everton directors probably will be considering the Higgins finding at the meeting this evening.
EVERTON AND HIGGINS
November 9, 1950. The Liverpool Daily Post
By Leslie Edwards
Everton manager Cliff Britton, had nothing to say on the position of Billy Higgins suspension for his Bogota journey, after his club’s Board meeting last night. One recalls that Jack Hedley, who also went to Colombia was transferred from Everton almost immediately he returned. Eddie Wainwright’s knee trouble is taking longer than anticipated. He and Maurice Lindley and Harry Catterick are all unavailable this week and are to see a specialist next Monday. The Everton team will be chosen later in the week.
EVERTON TEAM PROBLEMS
November 9, 1950. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Everton definitely will have to meet Tottenham Hotspur at Goodison Park on Saturday without several of the stars players. Three are due to be examined by the club specialist next Monday. Neither Wainwright, Harry Catterick, nor Maurice Lindley will be fit for this week-end, and they have done no training at all this week. There is more-encouraging news about Cyril Lello who is recovering from a cartilage operation. Lello played for the Reserves last Saturday, had to go on the wings in the second half where he still helped to make the victory goal. The move to the wing was rather precautionary, and although his knee was swollen after the match, he has been training this week, and will in all probability be playing for the Reserves on Saturday.
A SPUR TO EVERTON
November 10, 1950. The Liverpool Echo
Victory Over Tottenham Would Restore Blues’ Waning Confidence
Not once this season have we been able to rejoice an Everton and Liverpool victory on the same Saturday. Everton have another stern task before them in the visit of Tottenham Hotspur, who having won their last six matches must come to Goodison brimful of confidence which is half the battle. Everton are facing yet another strenuous fight to achieve safely and the way the luck has been against them this season must inevitably have had an adverse psychological effect on the players. A side can withstand misfortune and injuries for so long but when the fates seem to delight in continued conspiracy against them there comes a time when confidence wanes and the struggle can no longer be waged with the same good heart and hopefulness. I thrust that point has not arrived at Goodison. Though the position is ominous a good win or two, especially against sides of Tottenham’s calibre would go a long way towards restoring optimism. On form Tottenham look good for at least a point, but Everton can take encouraging from the fact that they defeated the Spurs in the Cup last year when practically everyone had written off their chances as hopeless. What they have done before is not beyond repetition if they tackle the job in the right way. The Blues will field the same team as last week; Everton; Burnett; Clinton, Moore; Grant, Jones, Farrell; Buckle, Fielding, McIntosh, Potts, Eglington. Tottenham; Ditchburn; Ramsey, Willie; Nicholson, Clarke, Burgress; Walters, Bennett, Duquemin, Bailey, Medley.
November 10, 1950. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Everton have Goodison one of the finest attractions of the season, for they will be facing Tottenham Hotspur, one of the most dazzling clubs of 1950 and who will be trying to complete a run of seven matches without dropping a point.
One from ten
Everton’s only win have been over Huddersfield, Middlesbrough and Fulham, and their only point from the last five home games was that retained when Bolton Wanderers were here. The Spurs bid to avoid a hat-trick of defeats by the odd goal at Anfield and last season at Goodison Park, when long odds on favourites, Everton up and defeated them 1-0. Everton are unchanged. Everton; Burnett; Clinton, Moore; Grant, Jones, Farrell; Buckle, Fielding, McIntosh, Potts, Eglington. Tottenham; Ditchburn; Ramsey, Willie; Nicholson, Clarke, Burgress; Walters, Bennett, Duquemin, Bailey, Medley.
November 11, 1950. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton play an unchanged side, but Spurs with every department at or near international class, will look upon the game with supreme confidence. Everton’s well-conducted approaches to goal and their frequent failure to score make them very tantalizing to watch. I am still yearning for them to show again that all up form of attack so effective at Fulham.
EVERTON, OUT OF LUCK, AGAIN GO DOWN FIGHTING FOR A POINT
November 11, 150. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton 1, Tottenham 2
Everton were dreadfully unlucky to lose both points. They were the better side in practically every department, but Tottenham’s goal bore a charmed life. Everton; Burnett, goal; Clinton and Moore, backs; Grant, Jones (T.E.) and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Buckle, Fielding, McIntosh, Potts, and Eglington, forwards. Tottenham Hotspur; Ditchburn, goal; Ramsey, and Willis, backs; Nicholson, Clarke, and Burgess, half-backs; Walters, Bennett, Duquemin, Bailey, and Medley, forwards. Referee; Mr. R.J. Leafe (Nottingham). Two Eire selectors Messrs Wickham and Trainor, were at Goodison today casting an eye over Everton’s Irish players in view of Eire’s match against Norway, at Dublin a fortnight tomorrow. Farrell won the toss for Everton and elected to kick in the Gwladys Street end, so that Everton had the sun and a fairly stiff breeze behind them. The opening stages had shown practically all the play in Everton’s favour, and Ramsey had been strangely uncertain for a back of international calibre. Fielding sent Buckle away on the right. Winger, however, required more space to work in than Willis was ready to let him have and Buckle eventually ran the ball behind. The position looked a trifle ominous when Duquemin took an excursion to the left flank and crossed the ball beautifully for Bennett, Farrell, however had spotted the danger and was there in time to make a good interception.
Tottenham were now showing better combined ideas than they had done at the start, and their wing halves were coming into the game with more telling effect. Nevertheless, Everton had still done the bulk of attacking and they came once again, when Potts neatly robbed Nicholson, but instead of going through when he had a comparatively clear field, pulled the ball back too far for Buckle. At the 25th minute Tottenham took the lead through Baily the movement started on the right where Walters swung over a nice centre and Baily getting it under control and cutting in quickly squeezed the ball in from six yards range and rather an acute angle. Moore appeared to make contact without being able to get the ball away, and Duquemin following through, ended up at the back of the net. This must have been a little disheartening for Everton after their earlier endeavours but they showed no signs of it in their play, and McIntosh and Buckle both went close.
No Final Punch
Everton had a let-off when Burnett missed connecting as he tried to punch out a Medley centre, but fortunately for the Blues it bounced just out of Walters reach as the right-winger closed in. Potts came into the picture when he won the upper hand in a tussle against Nicholson and Clarke, but as had been happening so often, there was no final punch when Everton got within shooting distance. Moore had so far won most of his duels with Walters and got a rally from the crowd which he again robbed the Spurs winger in the nick of time.
“Hard Lines” Fielding
Everton were still throwing all they had into attack, and during one strong assault the Spurs defence looked anything but happy for some moments. Fielding had the hardest of lines when an Eglington pass gave him a chance to fire in quickly from 20 yards distance with Ditchburn taken by surprise. Fielding’s shot was not more than six inches on the wrong side of the upright. Everton deserved a goal for their fighting spirit put it was not coming this half.
Half-time; Everton nil, Tottenham Hotspur 1.
Everton started off the second half as they had finished the first –with a rip-roaring assault which had the Tottenham defence all at sea. Twice in ten seconds the ball was cleared off the goal line first by Ramsey who kicked out an Eglington shot, and then by Willis who performed a similar service when McIntosh headed in from a Fielding centre.
Eglington In Form
Everton came yet again, this time for Ditchburn to tip a hot-drive by McIntosh over the bar from close range. Ramsey was looking anything but like an England full back against Eglington, who along with McIntosh had been the focal point of most of Everton’s attack. Farrell, as usual was playing a real captain’s game, but as Burgess was for Tottenham. Twice in quick succession Farrell put Eglington through and then from a free-kick on the left the Tottenham goal again had two narrow escapes in the course of a few seconds. First Ditchburn saved a header by McIntosh and then fell full length to prevent a scissor flick by Potts creeping into the net. Everton claimed strongly for a penalty when Buckle was brought down by Willis but Referee Leafe gave a free kick for obstruction. This led to one of the most peculiar goals I have seen for years. Fielding took the free kick well to the right of the goal, about ten yards from the goal line. He shot strongly for the far corner of the goal, and Buckle who was directly in the flight of the ball, jumped up and opened his legs wide. The ball touch the inside of his right leg and then entered the net after being deflected only very slighty. This was at 55 minutes. Had the ball not struck Buckle it would not have been a goal as the free kick was an indirect one. There may, perhaps have been a tinge of luck in the way in which this equalizer matured, but their could be no doubt that Everton had thoroughly deserved it.
In Arrears Again
Hardly had the rejoicing of the Everton supporters died down than Tottenham were again in front. A long clearance during another Everton assault saw Medley out on his own in the centre forward position and with no one up in support. Jones fell back for a time before finally going into the tackle and when he was beaten Medley steered the ball coolly and confidently into the far corner of the goal. Ditchburn had to have “bites” to save a Fielding free kick from 25 yards range but he completed his clearance despite being harassed by McIntosh. Grant came up to try a shot unfortunately without getting the right angle on it. If Tottenham get two points out of this game, then Everton can rightly claim that the fates have again treated them badly. The Blues had done 80 per cent of the forcing work up to now but the luck was dead against them. The Londoners with only two real chances had taken two goals. Eglington who has rarely played better than this gave another sample of his work in beating two men near the half-way line. Fielding likewise sparkled with a neat dribble and then once again McIntosh was foiled by another brilliant Ditchburn save. Spurs were rarely out of their own half, yet when they did get away Medley again showed his cleverness by bearing Grant and Clinton, and then firing in a powerful drive which was only inches over the bar. McIntosh got the better of Clarke once again, but this time was unable to direct his shot on the target.
Final; Everton 1, Tottenham Hotspur 2. Official attendance, 47,125.
SHEFF UNITED RES V EVERTON RES
November 11, 1950. The Liverpool Football Echo
Although having an equal share of an interesting match, Everton were fortunate to be level at the interval, for McLaren shot over the bar from a penalty kick. Before this, Keating, O’Sullivan and Loukes tested Leyland, and Hickson, Hold, and Lello missed chances of putting Everton ahead.
Half-time; Sheffield United Res Nil, Everton Nil.
Leyland and Saunders both saved dangerous situations, and Gibson and Hold hit back strongly for Everton. When Hickson earned a corner after a long run, Parker’s header was cleverly saved by Kelk. Final; Sheff United Res nil, Everton Res 1.
HEFTY MEAL TWO HOURS BEFORE PLAY MAKES LIVELY SECOND HALF
November 11, 1950. The Liverpool Football Echo
By Billy Higgins
In an Interview With Ranger
I think I have said enough in my previous articles to make it clear that South America is no paradise for English players. There are a few further comparisons, however, which I think will interest readers. At most readers are aware English professionals including those attached to Third Division clubs, travel in comfort and are housed in first class hotels, when playing away. They travel comfortably enough in Colombia, for all away trips are made by plane. The nearest is to Medlien, about an hour’s journey for the 200 miles, and the farthest are to Cali and Barranquilla, which takes about 2 ½ hours in the air. As the regular plane services did not always fit in with matches, it was frequently necessary to have at least one night in an hotel. If English players were offered the type of accommodation which I have experienced there would soon be a real rumpus. On several occasions I have slept on an iron camp bed with just a hard “biscuit” bed, four or six players to a room. Only once did I stay in an hotel where the accommodation can anywhere near the standard we get in this country.
English players usually lunch approximately three hours before the match and then only eat a very light meal, usual fish. In Colombia the majority of players think nothing of polishing off a hefty four-course meal less than two hours the game is due to start. They just sit down and order what they fancy. It may be the indulgency which accounts for the fact that practically all the players are very slow starters. They rarely get properly into their stride until the second half. The most amusing incident which befell me happened when we played at Medellen, though it did not strike me as particularly funny at the time. We had flown to Medellen and then gone by bus from the hotel to the ground about an hour’s run over a very bad road. On a good road you could probably have done it in less than half the time. The bus dropped us about a mile from the ground, and we had to walk there along with the crowd. That wasn’t the bad, but when we went to the parking place after the match, still in our playing kit the bus was not there. The driver had either just taken it into his head not to wait or else had not been given proper instructions, I never ascertained which. There we were about a dozen miles from our hotel and nothing to do but walk or beg a lift. After trudging about twenty minutes along the road, surrounded by a crowd of dirty urchins a lorry came along and gave a lift to all the Argentinains and Colombians. If they had felt incline they could have made room for Flavell and myself, but this was too good a chance for them to miss. They just bundled on the lorry and set off without giving us a thought. Bobby and I decided to make the best of a bad job by foot-slogging it until we also got a lift. After about another mile we managed to thumb a passing car. Fortunately the driver could speak a little English, and we managed to explain our plight. He very kindly took us right back to the hotel.
Apart from the many things I have previously mentioned, there is another aspect of Bogota which makes it difficult for English folk. The city is about 8,000 feet above sea level, and the air is so rarefied that it zaps all your energy. You get partly used to it after a time, but never completely acclimatized. The first week I was always short of breath after even the least bit of exertion, and going upstairs made the pant like a dog. It also takes away your appetite. Another problem for English folk, who do not speak Spanish, is the question of entertainment and social life. There is a British club where dances are held occasionally, but otherwise there is nothing but the cinema. I mentioned in a previous article the haphazard sort of way in which training is carried out. The transport arrangement to take the players to the ground for training were just as unsatisfactory. Instead of making their own way, as we do here, the club had a special coach to pick us up. The arrangements was that this should call for me about nine o’clock and then make a circular tour, picking up all the other players. This meant it was often eleven o’clock before we reached the ground, so that I had to spend two hours in the coach. Until Bobby Flavell joined the club it meant during these two hours it was unable to exchange a word with anybody. The same think happened in the reverse direction when training was over –two hours “purgatory.” That meant four hours wasted to the half an hour’s training. Sometimes the bus driver, who was a forgetful sort of chap, didn’t call for me at all. On other occasions we got to the ground and found it locked up. I have explained before that the ground did not belong to the Millionarios Club, but was rented from the municipality. Sometimes the club forgot to tell the groundsman that we were coming and sometimes the groundsman was told but he forgot. When we got there and found the place shot we took the coach to the ground of an orphanage school not so far away, who showed us the top of their pitch. The only thing was that sometimes the boys themselves were playing a game and we had to wait until they had finished.
Apart from my wages and bonus, the only perks that came my way out there was when Mitten, Mountford, Franklin and myself were asked to advertise the products of a tailoring firm. They provided us with a fine suit each, took several photographs and paid us 200 pesos each, approximately £35. When Favell and I had our photographs taken at the start of the match we asked the photographer if we could have a couple of prints each. We got them, but he also sent us a bill for the equivalent of £1 for four postcards. Some players out there do add to their income by lending their name to boost the sales of cigarettes and other things including even beer. But nothing of like that came my way. I have been asked if there were any repercussions, so far as I was concerned, after Neil Franklin came home so unexpectedly it did not have any effect on me, or on any of the other English players in a direct way, though now and again one sensed a certain antagonism in a small section of people. I understand that the commercial community was more upset about it. The cost of living out there as I have mentioned before, was terrifically high. The flat I had though a beautiful one, with large rooms and well furnished, cost me close on £70 a month. Really it was much too big for my family and when Flavell and later his wife and child came out they took half of it so that helped considerably.
Here and There
What sort of a show would that past Colombian side make against an English team? Is a question I have been asked many times. The sides out there are about equal to the average Third Division club here. They would not stand a chance against our First Division team, which would run them off their feet if the match was placed in this country. If played out there, with the high attitude and so on, our lads would obviously be under a disadvantage, but I reason they would still manage to win comfortably, even going at half-speed. This brings the tale of my unhappy trip in search of a quick football fortune to an end. If it kills any lingering doubts there might be in the minds of any players over here as to whether it is still worth “talking a chance” and going out to Bogota then it will have served a useful purpose. My advice can be summed up by the same word which Mark Twain used when giving advice to the young man about to marry –Don’t.
RANGERS LETTER BOX
November 11, 1950. The Liverpool Echo
I would like you to take up with Everton a problem regarding the stand behind the goal in Gwladys Street. Each league match finds this stand over full. It would seem that there are more tickets issued than there are seats, and in consequence the entrances are jammed with people for whom there is no seat. The creep up the sides of the entrances spoiling the view of those who have got a seat. You would not say 2s 6d to go in a cinema and find your view obscured by someones standing in the gangway. There is also the safety point to be considered, if a fire broke out the seated folk could not move until all the standing people had moved first. And what makes to all seem more ironic is that the season ticket holders stand generally has the two top rows empty. If there is no rear in the stand for which people have paid, surely places could be found in stands that do have spare seats. E.L. McCall, Speke.
FAME WAS THE SPUR
November 13, 1950. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 1, Tottenham Hotspur 2
After this game Everton must surely despair that fortune intends to smile on them again. If ever they deserved victory this was the occasion, but it was denied them in spite of their almost superhuman efforts. Though they did 80 per cent of the attacking and had a ratio of five shots to each one from the opposition, nothing went right for them. It would not have been move than justice had they won with two or three goals to spare. Instead Spurs scored twice when they made a quick break away after being penned down for long periods to dogged defence of their own goal, and in spite of their grimly determined efforts and overwhelming territorial superiority. It was all Everton could do to get one somewhat fortuitous goal. It was not through any lack of scoring efforts that Everton failed to get their due reward. Potts apart they could not be faulted in their desire to shoot. Unfortunately they found Ditchburn in brilliant form in the Spurs goal. His miraculous save from McIntosh with only half a minute to go “robbed” the home side of the point they had so richly earned, just as earlier saves prevented them being well in front long before the finish. Even when Ditchburn was beaten visiting defenders were there to kick off the line. This happened on three occasions, twice within a few seconds soon after the resumption at a time when Everton were smiting the opposition hip and thigh and the Spurs rearguard hardly knew whether it was on its head or its heels.
The first half had produced a lot of check-mate football from both sides yet still with Everton fairly well on top and promising to wipe out the goal which Baily scored at the 25th minute. The second half was nearly all Everton. Tottenham for long spells never got out of their own half and with Everton halves following up to lend weight and shot to the attack it was no more than the home team deserved when Buckle put them level. This goal was something of a curiously. It came from an indirect free kick for obstruction in the penalty area by Willis on Buckle. Fielding took the free kick hit it hard and Buckle who was right in the line of fight leaped in the air with his legs apart and his back to the goal. The ball glanced off the inside of his leg and into the net just out of Ditchburn’s reach. This was the tonic Everton needed. They redoubled their efforts and hammered away with even greater vigour until it seemed a certainty that the Spurs must crack sooner or later. Instead a long clearance found Medley alone near the edge of the Everton penalty area. He rounded Jones, drew Burnett out of his goal and then coolly slotted the ball home to give Spurs the points and the bonus all against the run of the play. After this Everton must surely wonder what they have to do to win. They had fighting spirit, a great winger in Eglington who made Ramsay look anything but international class a lively leader in McIntosh –who with luck might have had at least two goals – and a defence which in spite of occasionally looking a trifle nervy, held its own well.
While it should be unfair to blame the home rearguard for either of Tottenham’s goals the fact remains that in each a defender held off making his challenge for possession just that fraction of time which enabled the scorers to get the ball under control. That apart they could not be faulted. Potts was the weakest link in the attack. Several times he shirked the responsibity of shooting, preferring to pass when a first-time shot was the obvious thing McIntosh and Eglington were the most dangerous forwards and Farrell though not as dominating as usual served up another excellent display. Tottenham had a brilliant custodian in Ditchburn and two hard working wing halves but their forwards were rarely seen to advantage apart from the way in which the scorers took the unexpected chances which came their way. They played some pretty football, but had little finishing power. Medley and Baily the new England left wing, were the most dangerous flank, and though Duquemin tried hard, he seldom got the better of Jones.
SHEFFIELD UNITED RESERVES 0, EVERTON RESEVRES 1
November 13, 1950. The Liverpool Daily Post
A second half rally and a late goal gave both points to Everton, in the Central League match at Sheffield on Saturday. Sheffield had sufficient chances for a winning lead by the interval when their Irish right wing of O’Sullivan and Keating, kept the visiting defence at full stretch. Everton were fortunate to see a McLaren penalty kick sail high over the bar. Both sides lacked marksmen but in the 78th minute inside right Hold gave Everton victory following a Gibson centre.
BLUES PLAYERS PASS TESTS
November 13, 1950, The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Two Everton players came through exacting tests with flying colours on Saturday. They were Tommy Clinton and Cyril Lello, and from a purely club point of view the news of Lello is the more encouraging. Lello is recovering from a cartilage operation and he came through the Central League game against Sheffield United at Bramell Lane in great style, playing a vital part in the Blues win and with the knee standing up splendidly throughout Clinton, who only gained a regular first team place this season, was under the microscope eyes of Messrs Trainer and Joe Wickham of the Eire F.A who assured me afterwards that Tommy, as well as their old trends Peter Farrell and Tommy Eglington, had convinced them that he is good enough to be selected to play against Norway in Dublin. Clinton is certain of his “cap” if John Carey, the man dispossession is no available.
Two of football’s leading managers went out of their way at Goodison Park on Saturday to congratulate Everton on their brilliant display against the mighty Tottenham Hotspur, despite their 2-1 defeat. They were Mr. Arthur Rowe, of the Spurs, and Mr. Cliff Britton, of Everton. Mr. Rowe said that the simply could not reconcile Everton’s splendid football with the league position. He said to Cliff Britton; “Cliff, with a team like you have, you should be among the leaders. You will soon get away from the bottom. “Cliff Britton usual went into the Everton dressing room at the final whistle to congratulate the lads on their great fight and say a few words of sympathy off their ill-luck in being beaten. “Luck beat you and not Tottenham,” said Manager Britton and he was right. This result was a travesty. Everton played like a championship team in the second half, and while the display was not exactly above criticism, I am certain that there is no used for any despondency. The players have the ability and the lighting spirit, and will play much worse than they did against Tottenham and win. Everton half-back brilliance often tipped the Sours’ attacks to shreds and with Clinton and Moore so quick and strong in their interception and tackle, the Hotspur were limited to no more than eight shots. The measure of Everton’s command may be asserted by these simple facts; Spurs first attack of the game in 27 minutes brought a goal; Spurs’ first attack of the second half in 20 minutes brought another goal; Spurs had only three shots actually on the target and got two goals, Everton had fully 20 shots on the target in the second half and got only one goal.
The brilliance of goalkeeper Ditchburn was mainly responsible for Everton’s great attacking surge bringing so little in practical reward. Ditchburn was a super –goalkeeper with a dash of luck. Burnett was for so long an idle goalkeeper with a hugh helping of ill-luck. I agree entirely with Everton view that opposing goalkeepers seem to take a fiendish delight in reserving their greatest display for Everton games, and that no opposing goalkeeper ever makes a mistake against the Blues. It is all so correct. The power of a player like Fielding could be felt in the second half when Everton took, complete command. “Nobby,” maybe heartened by a great shot just before the interval which beat Ditchburn but sneaked inches outside, swung right into his game, and with Buckle and Grant constituted a right wing triangle which had Burgess and Willis literally with their tongues out, and the Spurs wasting time whenever they could. McIntosh gave Clarke a hectic afternoon, refusing to be shaken out of his game by unceremonious tactics and being the greatest marksman of the game. Two shots on the pivot were mighty. Apart from his slowness, Potts is taking over long to dovetail into the Everton machine but a little of his old Burnley first time tactics should be of assistance to him. Eglington was the best forward of all who never was once beaten by Ramsey, and who could made shooting openings for others and take them themselves. I do not critise Ramsey’s work with the ball, but he was not capable of holding Eglington. Farrell also revealed Irish power, being the complete master of Bennett, and helping the striving Potts by becoming an emergency, inside-left when the occasion is demanded. Peter did two jobs amazingly well, while Jones showed steady importance, so much so that we hardly ever saw Duquemin in the game. The power of Clinton and Moore can be gained by the fact that Burnett was not had an easier game this season. The power of Everton made Spurs look anything but a potential championship side, but never the slightest luck which is the just reward for endeavour. Believe me, when Wainwright is fit again this Everton will go all one way –up the table.
NOTHING GOES RIGHT
November 13, 1950. The Liverpool Echo
Everton Lose Again, But Get Top Marks for Fighting Spirit
Eire selectors who saw Everton play like anything but a bottom-of-the-table side against Spurs would like to have the help of Farrell and Eglington, in their game against Norway at Dublin on Sunday Week. Selectors Wickham and Traynor were also impressed by the fine exhibition of Clinton against England’s left-wing pair. Everton have always been sportingly accommodating when internationals honours have been proffered their players but in the present state of affairs it may be asking too much for them to risk injury to anybody particularly three key-men like the Irish lads.
So far no official request has been made to the club for the services of any of them. If it is made, then the board will have to consider carefully all the angles of a tricky problem. Though the outlook at Goodison Park becomes increasingly grim, and the Blues position today is even worse than it was at this time last year or the year before, they gained a certain amount of honour in their latest defeat. Whatever else the team may lack it was certainly not wanting in courage and fighting spirit against Tottenham. Unfortunately all their splendid endeavour and over whelming territorial superiority went for nothing in face of the fact that Spurs got two goals and Everton only one. Everton did everything but end up in front. They penned Spurs in their own half for long stretches they hammered away at Ditchburn’s charge at almost every opportunity and they had the visitors so worried and anxious that one might have thought it was Spurs who were bottom of the table and Everton near the top. Yet to some extent Everton contributed to their own undoing. Both Tottenham goals might have been prevented had defenders gone into the tackle immediately instead of backing away for a few yards. It was this which allowed Walters the chance to make the centre which led to Baily’s goal and a similar hesitancy which presented Medley with those few vital seconds to get the ball under control which led to the second goal.
This Way Lies The Danger
While is would be harsh to be unduly critical on that account for otherwise the defence played spindly throughout there has been an increasing tendency for some time for Everton defenders to Hold off their challenge. To my mind this is a dangerous policy. The sooner a tackle is made the greater scope and time there is for a defender to recover he happens to be beaten. Ditchburn was the one man who more than any other, prevented Everton getting their due reward. He made many brilliant saves none better than that in the last minute from McIntosh. That is what he was there for, of course, but it must have been heartening for the Everton forwards, particularly McIntosh and Eglington, each of whom gave a most heartening show. Potts was disappointing. Not only was he slow to the ball and weak in the passing, but when the chance of a first time shot presented itself he invariably elected to let somebody else take the onus. He must shoot hard and often if he is to pull his weight.
Blues “On The Spot.”
“Unlucky to lose” is a label sometimes loosely applied, but in this case it could with every truth be attached to Everton. They will play much worse than this and yet get both points. Three times Sours kicked away from the goalline when Ditchburn had been beaten and for long periods they were so harassed and overplayed that the wingers as well as the inside men came back to lend a hand in stemming the tide. Everton’s goal was a peculiar one being deflected by the inside of Buckle’s spread-eagle legs as be jumped in the air when Fielding took an indirect free-kick for obstruction, Buckle had his back in the goal at the time. Unfortunately, ill-deserved though this defeat was, it puts Everton badly “on the spot.” The margin is widened still further between them and the clubs just above in the table. It is going to take a tremendous effort to make up the leeway. Everton may be too good a side to go down, as was the case a generation ago, but it is going to be hard to scrape clear.
Lello came through his second test with Everton Reserves in encouraging fashion. If his knee keeps improving as it has lately he should soon be ready for senior consideration. Wainwright, Catterick, ad Lindley had further specialist examination today. The club now awaits the report on them.
GOOD NEWS FOR EVERTON
November 14, 1950. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Good news for Everton. Favourable reports were received by manager Cliff Britton after Eddie Wainwright, Harry Catterick, Maurice Lindley and Cyril Lello had been examinated by the club specialist. Wainwright and Catterick resumed full training again today, and will be fit to resume if needed on Saturday week, November 25, when Everton will be at home to Sunderland. Lindley resumed light training today, and will be fit for match duty on Saturday fortnight, when Everton are due to travel to Aston Villa. Lello, who came through his game with the reserves last Saturday without any ill-effects, will continue now with full work. The specialist expressed himself as delighted with his progress Cyril is making. This good news relieves tension at Goodison Park, where week in week out there have been a crip of casualties. All the players came through the Tottenham Hotspur game without injury.
November 16, 1950. The Evening Express
Everton are unchanged for the visit to Wolves on Saturday. Team; Burnett; Clinton, Moore; Grant, Jones, Farrell; Buckle, Fielding, McIntosh, Potts, Eglington. Billy Wright, the Wolverhampton Wanderers and England captain and wing-half, who missed the international against Wales yesterday, owing to a back injury, will play for his club, if fit. He is still receiving treatment.
Everton Reserves (v. Barnsley at Goodison Park, 2.30 p.m.); Sagar; Saunders, Rankin; Bentham, Humphreys, Lello; Gibson, Hold, Hickson, Hampson, Parker.
November 17, 1950. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton travel to Molineux, seeking their second away win of the season but still without such vital men as Wainwright, Catterick, Lindley and Lello. Yet a repetition of the grand form the Blues showed in the second half against their ‘Spurs last Saturday should gain them a point at least. No club can go on striking so hard and truly without bring some grist to the mill in time, and surely it is Everton’s turn now. The Blues have an excellent post-war record at Molineux; in fact, they have lost only one game there in league and Cup. Wolves who still have a doubt about Billy Wright, the England captain, have shown themselves as a quick shooting attacking force, with however, uncertainty in defence. Persistent and subtle exploitation of Eglington and Buckle looks like being the Everton road to success.
Wolves; Williams; Mclean, Pritchard; Crook, Shorthurst, Wright; Hancock, Dunn, Swinborne, Pye, Mullen. Everton; Burnett; Clinton, Moore; Grant, Jones, Farrell; Buckle, Fielding, McIntosh, Potts, Eglington.
EVERTON WILL DO WELL TO GET A POINT FROM WOLVERHAMPTON
November 17, 1950. The Liverpool Echo
Though Everton will be more optimistic of their chances against Wolverhampton Wanderers after their good fighting display against Tottenham last week, they will find Wolverhampton a pretty tough nut to crack. Still, the Wolves this season have already suffered three home defeats by Derby County, Middlesbrough and Arsenal. It would be a district feather in Everton’s cap if they could be the fourth side to turn the tables on Manager Stan Cullis’s eleven, but it will take a lot of doing. A point would not come amiss and Everton doubtless would be satisfied with such a result. Manager Cliff Britton is able to field an unchanged side for the fourth successive match, and with Wainwright, Catterick, Lello and Lindley likely to be ready for consideration shortly, Everton’s trouble in the way of injuries are decreasing considerably. If they can put more punch into their forward work the side might begin at last to climb from the bottom rung. Only once since they got three goals against Middlesbrough on August 30 has the Everton attack scored more than one goal in any game and that was the surprise “nap-hand” against Fulham at Craven Cottage. Wolves; Williams; Mclean, Pritchard; Crook, Shorthurst, Wright; Hancock, Dunn, Swinborne, Pye, Mullen. Everton; Burnett; Clinton, Moore; Grant, Jones, Farrell; Buckle, Fielding, McIntosh, Potts, Eglington.
Everton Reserves (v. Barnsley at Goodison Park, 2.30 p.m.); Sagar; Saunders, Rankin; Bentham, Humphreys, Lello; Gibson, Hold, Hickson, Hampson, Parker.
Norman Kearsley, Runcorn’s 17-year-old outside left, who played for Cheshire against Derbyshire at Buxton in the recent Northern Counties amateur championship match, is to have a trial with Everton. The Runcorn club has come to an agreement with Everton to allow the player to go.
EVERTON JUST COULD NOT KEEP THE WOLVES FROM THE DOOR
November 18, 1950. The Liverpool Football Echo
Wolves 4, Everton Nil
Everton had ten minutes of their Tottenham form, and then, thanks to magnificent exploitation of both Hancocks and Mullen, Wolves got right on top and stayed there, although for a side so far behind Everton had a great share of the game in the second half. Wolves;- Williams, goal; McLean and Pritcard, backs; Crook, Shorthouse, and Wright (captain), half-backs; Hancocks, Dunn, Swinborne, Pye and Mullen, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Clinton and Moore, backs; Grant, Jones and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Buckle, Fielding, McIntosh, Potts and Eglington, forwards. Referee; Mr. H. Webb (Leeds). Everton kicked off towards the Molinuex Kop, with a ball which was egg-coloured in its lightness. The first near miss came when little Hancocks produced a high centre, after tempting the Everton defence to his wing, with the ball travelling just over the far angle of an empty goal. From the corner Burnett made a good punch –away when challenged. Pott’s anticipated in picking up a Grant through-pass was excellent and Wolves kept out his shot only at the expense of a corner. Mullen’s swerving shot had Burnett going down to it as a safety precaution but as it happened it travelled wide. Then Hancocks, who was making Moore’s life a misery, jinked his way to a centre from which Swinbourne guided the ball a few feet wide of the post with his head. There followed so much incident in Everton’s goalmouth that it was hard to keep pace with it. Burnett got his chest in front of a point-blank shot by Swinbourne and there were other narrow escapes before Swinborne scored at 14 minutes. It was a simple goal in that McLean’s free kick came straight through to Dunn, who flicked it upwards. Swinborne and Burnett arrived at the ball practically together and the Wolves centre forward turning it high over the goalkeeper’s head to drop slowly over the line. Burnett and company had a charmed life before Dun with a first rate left foot shot made it 2-0 at 17 minutes. Although so outclassed after a good start, Everton had good chances to reduce the lead. First McIntosh, from outside left, planted his centre so accurately that Potts was able to head on the post, and a moment later, when Eglington centred, Potts had little to do gave go on and score, but he was crowded out.
Finished Among Crowd
Several times Wolves came within an ace of increasing the lead. At one stage when Farrell desperately tried to keep the ball in play for a pass to Eglington, he succeeded, but finished up standing among spectators on terrace three feet below the level of the playing pitch. The speed of the ball off the wet turf- it was still raining –was tremendous, and Everton were plainly rattled by Wolves supreme confidence and desire to shoot hard and often. Moore still just could not begin to fathom Hancocks, who was a constant source of danger. For a second time, Everton saw one of their players disappear over the side, and it must have been an anxious moment for Cliff Britton when £20,000 signing Potts went over the guard rail at the spot where Farrell had gone over to disappear from view. It was some moments before he regained his feet and but for the crowd breaking his fall it seemed he would have damaged himself. Pye clean through could not apply the finishing touch, and Wolves were so uproarious in attack it was a mystery how the score remained 2-nil. Yet Everton again had a good chance of narrowing the issue when Buckle dug up a free kick and Eglington sailed in with his head to put the ball just wide. Wolves turned defence into attack so often with long accurate passes so often with long, accurate passes to Hancocks, the game seemed an almost continuous Hancocks versus Everton theme with centre after centre arriving around the Everton goal. Burnett had to make an inspired one-handed save to prevent Swinborne scoring.
Half-time; Wolves 2, Everton Nil.
After Swinborne had failed by inches to head a third goal from a Mullen centre, early in the second half , the game swung Everton’s way. Buckle forced Williams to edge the ball round the angle and there were signs that Everton might make a match of it after all. But Pye should certainly have scored –his second bad miss –when he was clean through. However, at 56 minutes the Everton defence opened up once again and Mullen tapped the ball past the out coming Burnett and tried to round the goalkeeper, but was brought down in the process. Everton disputed the penalty award, but nothing could shake the decision and Hancock made no error whatever with the kick. Soon afterwards, in collision with Burnett, Hancock was damaged and had to leave the field, for a few minutes. The tale of injuries continued when Swinborne caught Burnett’s face with his hand as the goalkeeper moved across him with the ball to make his clearance and Burnett heeded attention. Sixty-six minutes of this eventful game had gone when Swinbourne almost from outside right came in down the line and centred a short ball from which Mullen scored. Although four down Everton contributed a few movements worth a goal. Buckle with a header, Grant with a shot and Eglington with a header, which Williams put around the post only with the greatest difficulty, all went close to scoring, although Wolves seemed to be sailing in comfortably on their long lead. Young Jones stood up to his difficult task well, and for sheer endeavour no one matched the persevering Grant. McIntosh too worked hard but this was a forward line which just could not produce the telling stroke in front of goal. In their approach work they were good enough to work openings from which goals should have come. Final; Wolverhampton W 4, Everton Nil.
EVERTON RES V. BARNSLEY RES
November 18, 1950. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton Res; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Rankin, backs; Bentham, Humphreys and Lello, half-backs; Lello, Gibson, Hold, Hickson, Hampson, and Parker, forwards. Barnsley Res; Hough, goal; Lindsay and Hudson, backs; Jarman, Kitchen, and Scattergood, half-backs; Callaghan, Dunn, March, Griffiths, and Kaye, forwards. Referee; Mr. H.J. Silverster (Wolverhampton). Everton proved the dominant side and Barnsley’s Hough was severely tested by Hickson and Hampson. Barnsley nevertheless displayed good form and Callighan was unlucky with two well-delivered shots. One of the features was the fine play of the Barnsley goalkeeper. In the 28th minute Dunn gave the visitors the lead and a minute later Hold had hard lines in not equalizing. Half-time; Everton Res Nil, Barnsley Res 1.
The second half saw Everton bombarding the visitors goal. Hough was fully extended from good shots from Gibson and Hickson. In the 55th minute Everton became on level terms. Cyril Lello scoring from long range. Everton missed two penalty shots.
Everton “A” v. Liverpool “A”
Both sides produced clever and delightful football with little to choose between them. Easthorpe gave Everton the lead and Donovan scored a second a minute later. Liverpool pressed and a good shot by Price was cleverly saved by O’Neill. Half-time; Everton 2, Liverpool nil
FIGURING OUT EVERTON’S CHANCE OF ESCAPING THE THREAT OF RELEGATION
November 18, 1950. The Liverpool Football Echo
Point A Match Average Might Save The Day –But Can It Be Done?
Without wishing to take a pessimistic or morbid view of the situation, the amount of talk about Everton’s fighting spirit or the manner in which ill-luck has dogged them this season can hide the fact that the Blues are going to have a tremendously hard job avoiding relegation.
If they have managed to win, or even draw, against Wolverhampton Wanderers at Molineux Park today, the lowering clouds which are making the outlook so black will have been temporarily lightened, but even so there will still remain a lot to do before their tenure of the First Division for another season can be regarded as certain. This week I have been comparing Everton’s position today with that of other threatened clubs during the four completed post-war seasons. With one exception that of Birmingham City last year, no club at this stage of the campaign stood in a worse points position than Everton do at the moment. Birmingham last year had obtained only seven points from 17 matches, compared with Everton’s nine this term. Birmingham went down as also did Manchester City, who at the same time stage had taken 12 points from their first 17 fixtures. Everton themselves also had 12 points from 17 matches, three better off than they were this morning. In 1948-49 when they finished fifth from the bottom, the Blues had got better reward than this campaign. They had 10 points than at the middle of November. Apart from Birmingham last year the only occasion any side has failed to record double figures in the points column after the completion of 17 fixtures were in 1948-49 when Sheffield United had nine, and the year before when Grimsby Town had a similar number. In each case these clubs suffered relegation.
The following table gives the number of points secured by the last four clubs in the table at the end of each post-war season. From it we can form some idea of what Everton have to do from now onwards to make sure the threat which hangs over them is averted.
Charlton Athletic, 34, Hudersfield Town 33; Brentford 25, Leeds United 18
Huddersfield Town 36, Sunderland 36, Blackburn Rovers 32, Grimsby Town 22
Middlesbrough 34, Huddersfield Town 34, Preston North End 33, Sheffield United 33
Stoke City 34, Charlton Athletic 32, Manchester City 29, Birmingham 28
In the early post war seasons Leeds went down with the meagre total of 18 points in 1947, followed by Grimsby Town with 22 a year later. Next season the vastly improved total of 33 did not gave either Preston North End or Sheffield United. Even in the two previous seasons, this figure was only sufficient to ensure third place from the bottom.
Going back to pre-war days, both West Bromwich Albion and Manchester City went down in 1937-38 with no less than 36 points, with Grimsby Town on the 38 mark, next above them. Without entering into greater detail, we can take it that to-day a side must aim at a minimum of 34 points o be reasonably assured of safety. If there happen to be a couple of really bad sides in the division then a lesser figure might suffice, but that is a very dubious thing on which to rely. No club with 34 points has been relegated since the last war, though that does not signify that on some future occasion even that figure as in 1937-38 may prove inadequate.
Now to look at the problem from another angle. With only nine points in the “kitty” to date Everton have to aim at a minimum of 25 from their remaining 25 matches to have a decent chance of survival. An average of a point per game should not be beyond the Blues capabilities if they can serve up the type of display that they produced against Tottenham last week. First requirement however, will be the need to take full points from their home matches. This is the vital thing. While an occasional away success either win or draw may come along the Blues’ form on opponents ground over the past few years has not been such as to encourage too optimistic hopes in this direction. A few more welcome surprises like the Fulham victory would be helpful. Those sort of things however, are few and far between. It is going to be hard and tough struggle and one in which the club’s supporters can wage a vital part by their vocal encouragement. After some of the spells of almost deathly silence last season and at a few games this year, it was a treat to hear the way the crowd did their stuff last Saturday. True, they had something to “get their teeth into.” That long-second half fighting rally of the Everton lads was more like cup-tie business than a league game. They threw everything they had into a galliant but unavailing effort. If ever victory was worthily earned this was the occasion. Yet it failed to come. The time for the crowd to urge the side on, however is when the tide is running against the Blues, not with them. Please bear this in mind in future and cheer even when it hurts.
Potts Must Shoot
I am not again going over the old ground of the weaknesses in the side. These are patent to Manager Britton and the board, who have assured the public that they are under constant review. There is still a lack of forceful cohesion in the front line which the advent of Harry Potts, unfortunately, has not yet remedied though there is still time. Potts used to be a useful sharp-shooter when with Burnley, getting goals with fair regularity. A little more first-time marksmanship and less inclination to pass the onus on to somebody also would make him look more like the fee Everton paid for him. The young defender in the Blues team have not yet mastered all the finer arts of their craft but they are showing good promise. If only Jackie Grant could miraculously add six inches to his statues there would be no need to look elsewhere for a right half. As it is his lack of height is often a disadvantage. One thing I would like to see is the end of the strategic plan which so often leads the defence to back away from all incoming forward. While it has its advantage this idea of “defence in depth” can be a two-edged weapon. It needs old heads to work it successfully. Arsenal can do it and Manchester United, but without close covering and intelligent anticipation which come only from experience, it can be as risky as the offside game against forwards who can hold and “work” the ball.
OUT OF THE PICTURE
November 20, 1950. The Liverpool Daily Post
Wolverhampton Wanderers 4, Everton 0
By Leslie Edwards
With both Everton and Liverpool right out of the football picture it is not out of place to point to Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur, outstanding sides, as example of what can be done by team spirit and intelligence against the more usual Division 1 application of individualism and dash. Individually players from the two London clubs are little if any better than those in teams they beat, but comparison of their play shows such a wide difference the tactical strength of one compared with the other is over-bearing. I am sure no team have tried harder than Everton to carry out the principles laid down for them than Everton’s but they just cannot get results. It is pathetic to see (and have to write about) their failure when one knows how much effort they are giving. Just as success breeds success so failure leads to failure. Everton, with so little to bouy them up have arrived at the point at which they seem physically incapable of shooting the ball into the net. The fast and uproarious Wolverhampton side wandered with the supreme confidence they have when playing at home to a 4-0 win. If both sides had taken their reasonable chances the result would have been near 10-4. Certainly Wolves, and Pye in particular failed too often to finalise promising attacks I can recall at least four occasions (including that on which Potts header struck the post) when, Everton, overplayed as they were after the first 15 minutes should have scored.
Ah Everton at best might have come away from Molinuex with a beating Billy Wright, recovered from injury was in England form, sweeping the ball instanter, with either foot in a series of long passes which arrived in perfect order for the takers. Hancocks who is inclined to moods, was evidently full of joy over his England capping. He received so many crossfield passes there was almost a furrow leading to him. Whether Everton’s policy of dropping back in face of two such wingers as Mullen and Hancocks was right or not is open to doubt. Moore, who may have been playing to orders was never able to get to grips with Hancocks and the stream of centre from the quarter was continual. The Hancocks –Dunn wing – with Dunn junior very like his father in colouring style, stance, build and performance –was all too good for Everton’s left wing defence and Clinton, Grant, whose defence prodigious and Jones fared better Peter Farrell, suffering from a cold must have been glad when his tour of duty ended. Defensively Wolves are big and strong, and ready to go in with conviction but Everton did enough to suggest that they could find a way through Eglington was luckless Buckle after an early knock was plainly unhappy and Fielding after a start full of punch, faded out and failed unaccountably at his strong shot –the sharp meanceurve and the telling pass.
Swinbourne good enough to keep a man like Wilshaw in the Reserves got one of the goals, Hancock got another from the penalty spot, the decision was challenged and Dunn sandwiched his goal between these two with the best shot of the match. Mullen late on came along with number four but Everton still fought on. What they must do to put themselves right is a truly baffling question. If it were not for what they have proved themselves able to do against Fulham, Spurs, Arsenal, and others there would be justification for the utmost pessimism instead one continue to have faith that a victory or two will turn the situation into happier channels.
November 20, 1950. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Confusion follows confusion when one tries to deal with football form. How can you reconcile the fact that Spurs were fortunate to escape defeat at Everton and yet on Saturday they rattled up seven goals without reply from Newcastle, who had just won at Anfield, and that Everton conceded another four goals at Wolverhampton? The unpredicatable keeps happening and so we may look forward to better times for the Reds and Blues. As I said to colleague Radar yesterday; “Do not despair we’ll have a victory to write about soon.” “Well it’s the same old story with Everton this week,” he replied. This is Radar’s summary of the game at Molineux; “It’s the same unhappy tale – artistic midfield football coming to nothing because of a glaring lack of finishing power. The outstanding difference between Everton and the Wolves was patent to everyone. It took the Wolves no more than two moves to transform defence into attack, and what is more they looked as if they would score every time they got moving. Everton never did. The Everton forwards, inclined to over-finesse, did work openings for themselves, but there were no more than four shots or headers which really troubled Williams. One header from the improved Potts struck the post with Williams beaten, but that was just another example of the fates playing a trick on the luck-starved Everton. Wolves settled down to their barn-storming type of raiding spearhead by Hancocks, and Mullen and Swinbourne and Dunn goals shattered the Goodison hopes. For a long spell Moore and Clinton and the wing-half-backs were at their wit’s ends to know how to cope with wave after wave of Wolves raids. “The situation was not helped by Farrell’s inclination to try and do too much, and his consequent straying from position made Moore’s task doubly as hard against a Hancocks who looked all over an England winger. Yet this game could have been turned into Everton’s favour. They had considerably more of the play after the interval, so much so that the Wolves other goals were as the result of breakaways. Generally Jones maintained a strict watch on the lively Wolves leader Swinbourne, and the more I see of him the more he impresses. Grant worked hard, but Everton had no one in the middle line capable of those slick, precision Billy Wright passes to the far wing. The forwards suffered from a certain lack of service, but McIntosh’s industry brought him no fair measure of reward; Buckle did not shine as a marksman; Potts although better, did not snap up those half-chances in his old Burnley style; Eglington did not always anticipate the run of play, and Fielding in my opinion would have been happier on the left.
THAT SINKING FEELING
October 20, 1950. The Liverpool Echo
Everton’s Fifth Successive Defeat
Two schools at thought exist about the current Everton (writes Contact). School No 1 says (and with some temper) “They are not good enough; nothing looks so certain as relegation. School No 2; “This side is not a good one, but it is far better than the record indicates. Give then a win or two and they will survive.” I confess to belonging to the have-patience brigade though I admit that sometimes my faith is shaken. On Saturday for instance they became completely out of character on their showing against Spurs and Fulham. And I find I do not get far in arguing that they should have scored three or four goals; it can be said with equal accuracy that if Wolves had made all their chances tell they would have been nearer double figures than four. My sympathies are with players and manager in their distress at not getting results, which is I fear what teams are judged by. The work is going into Everton’s preparation and the players are faithfully trying to carry our instructions. The only salve this week is that even had Everton played well a Wolves so confident and competent would have beaten them. There was nothing in the Everton curriculum (nor is there in any other club’s) to prevent the persistent flow of cross field passes which found Hancocks. In themselves they were not dangerous because the Everton defence was still there, intact. But when Moore by choice or design fell back, Hancocks gained all the chances to get the ball in dangerously. Dunn, Swinbourne (a potent great) and Mullen got goals, and Hancocks from a disputed penalty crowned one of his best days by putting himself on the register.
Grant had a great day, defensively and with what construction there could be with Wolves so much on top, and Jones showed the greatest promise. Potts and Buckle were out of luck, and Williams who might have been put the greater test, had an onlooker’s role compared with Burnett. Everton, with injured players fit again, have other problems to face, but discounting this Wolverhampton display, there have been signs of them breaking into the winning vain which ban do too much to restore their tradition and confidence. Somewhere in Division 1 are clubs not capable of withstanding Everton at their best. But where and when? It is all very mystifying and discouraging particularly to players and management.
Billy Higgins is likely to sign for a Welsh non-league club as soon as his suspension is over. He has had an excellent offer from them, on a two-year contract, and as he is not retained by Everton under F.A rule he is free to sign for a non-league club on December 1.
EVERTON MUST GAIN POINTS QUICKLY
November 21, 1950 The Liverpool Daily Post
By John Peel
Latest defeat of Everton at Wolverhampton has left the Goodison Park side isolated at the foot of the First Division of the Football League with only nine points from eighteen matches. This is three points worse off than their nearest companions in distress and it would appear that Everton’s prospects of lifting themselves to a more comfortable position in the table before we herald the New Year are indeed gloomy. From now until the end of the year Everton have eight League fixtures to fulfill, equally divided at home and away, and as their opponents in these games include Derby County, Newcastle United, Burnley (twice) and West Bromwich Albon, it will be at once realized the difficult task facing the Merseysiders. Everton’s fixtures from next Saturday until December 30 read;-
Nov 25. Sunderland (home)
Dec. 2 Aston Villa (away)
Dec 9 Derby County (home)
Dec 16 Hudderfield T (away)
Dec 23 Newcastle U (Home)
Dec 25 Burnley (home)
Dec 26 Burnley (away)
Dec 30 West Bromwich A (Away)
With Christmas holiday rush of fixtures fast approaching points are vital at this stage of the season and it is hoped that Everton’s luck will turn in the immediate future and that points will be gained quickly. The side is playing much good football and all that is required are goals to crowd it.
Eglington and Farrell Reserve
Eglington, Everton’s outside left is included in the Eire team to play Norway in Dublin next Sunday, while Farrell the Goodison Park club’s left half-back is one of the two reserves selected.
November 21, 1950. The Liverpool Echo
Everton had good new from the specialist today about Catterick who will be fit to resume match duties on Saturday and will be in the reserve side. Wainwright’s knee injury is progressing fairly well, but it is doubtful whether he will be able to play this week-end. Lindley although in full training, will not turn out for a further week. Unfortunately Buckle is down with influenza and is a doubtful starter against Sunderland.
Eglington’s Everton left winger, has been chosen to play for Eire against Norway at Dublin on Sunday, and his club-mate Farrell is on reserve.
Leslie Jones, former Arsenal player, and now manager of Scunthorpe is interested in Oscar Hold, who is on Everton’s open-to-transfer list.
MIXED NEWS FOR EVERTON
November 21, 1950. The Evening Express
Buckle Is latest “Casualty”
Pilot Log (Don Kendall)
Mixed news for Everton, Ted Buckle the outside right, had been taken ill with influenza and materially is doubtful for Saturday. Harry Catterick which with Wainwright and Lindley was examined by the club specialist yesterday, is back in full training, and will probably have a trial with the Central League on Saturday. Lindley is also back in full training, but there still remains a doubt about Wainwright being available to any game this week-end.
£100,000 WORTH OF FORWARD ON PARADE AT GOODISON
November 24, 1950. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Ted Sagar Makes his 432nd League Appearance
Everton concentrate tomorrow on breaking down the Winless spells which has go on for six weeks. Everton’s last win was a Fulham on October 7, and Everton that day had Ted Sagar in goal. Tomorrow, Ted will again be in goal for his 432nd League appearance for the Blues. That may bring a change in luck, Fielding goes to outside right for Buckle who is ill, and on the transfer list. Hold plays inside right against the club with the highest priced forward line the First Division. Sunderland, attack cost more than £70,000 as compared with Everton’s £30,000 line, and yet both clubs are so low in the table that even the super-optimists are getting worried. The trouble with both clubs is that they have been playing football far above their positions, but the goals have been dogging them. Everton’s failings can be attributed in large measures to the heavy way in which ill-luck is hammering at the Blues, that this week even secretary Theo Kelly slipped on a kerb and fractured a fibula so that he is forced to walk with crutches.
A tremendous task faces the Blues against the only first division club never to have played in the second division, for in addition to the continued absentee of vital players like Wainwright, Catterick, Lindley and Lello. Ted Buckle is a victim of bronchitis, enforced another delay in team selection. Everton have not won at home since August 30; in fact, have retained only two of the 14 points played for since. They are now three points behind Chelsea and Sheffield Wednesday at the bottom of the League. Sunderland are only five points ahead; in fact, there are so many clubs in the struggle area that a couple of wins could change the entire picture. Everton hopes rest, not only on the ability of forwards to snap up chances, but possibly even more on the skill of the half-back’s getting a grip on Sunderland’s high-priced attack, which will be led by football’s costliest player, Trevor Ford of Wales. Ford will face one of the game’s youngsters but most improving Centre-halfs in Tommy Jones, Sunderland’s only away win was secured at Bolton, but I rate their best away performance was the forcing of a draw at Tottenham who won here all out a fortnight ago. This should be another grand game starting at 2.30 p.m. Everton; Sagar; Clinton, Moore; Grant, Jones, Farrell; Fielding, Hold, McIntosh, Potts, Eglington. Sunderland; Mapson; Stelling, Hudgell; Watson, Walsh, Wright (A.), Wright (T.), Broadis, Ford, Shackleton, Reynolds.
November 24, 1950. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Everton have signed on professional forms Ken Furphy an 18-year-old wing half-back from Evenwood, the North-east junior club. Furphy has been down on trial on several occasions and impressed, but now takes up residence here where he will complete his apprenticeship as an electrician.
John Smith the 21-year-old centre half from Penrhisceiber, who was recommenced to Everton by their former captain international Ben Williams and who is an amateur, makes his central league debut against Blackburn Rovers at Ewood Park where Harry Catterick leads the forwards.
EVERTON MUST WORK OUT THEIR OWN SALVATION
November 24, 1950. The Liverpool Echo
Blues Recall Sagar and Hold and Play Fielding on the Wing
Everton make some surprise changes for their vital game against Sunderland at Goodison Park tomorrow. In the absence of Buckle who is indisposed, they are experimenting with Fielding at outside right, a position he once occupied without conspicuous success three seasons ago, against Liverpool, and bring in Oscar Hold recently placed on the transfer list, at inside right. Burnett is omitted from the side, and veteran Ted Sagar recalled in his stead. This will be Sagar’s 432nd appearance in a Football League game. Everton’s position begins to look pretty desperate. Two points tomorrow would be welcome and might prove the start of a gradual upward climb for their fixtures in the next few weeks are against other lowly clubs in which victory, as against Sunderland would bring double advantage. The Blues in past seasons have profited more by the fallings of others than any outstanding virtues of their own. This time it seems as though they must sink or swim by their own efforts. There doesn’t seem much encouragement for the hope that others may start to slide for some of the lowlier clubs have been showing signs of improvement. Everton did not play like a threatened team against Tottenham. Another inspired performance like that plus a little better luck who their shots should see the Goodison lads safely past the post first. But Sunderland on their day can be good too, and the Blues must not only start strongly, but keep it up. Everton; Sagar; Clinton, Moore; Grant, Jones, Farrell; Fielding, Hold, McIntosh, Potts, Eglington. Sunderland; Mapson; Stelling, Hudgell; Watson, Walsh, Wright (A.), Wright (T.), Broadis, Ford, Shackleton, Reynolds.
Everton Reserves (v. Blackburn, away); O’Neill; Saunders, Rankin; Bentham, Falder, J.H. Smith; Gibson, Donovan, Catterick, Hampson, Parker.
Smith is a 21-year-old amateur from Penrtiwceiber, who was recommended by Ben Williams the former Evertonian.
EVERTON’S FIRST HALF THREE-GOAL RUSH GAVE SUNDERLAND MAL-DE-MERSEY
November 25, 1950. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton 3, Sunderland 1
The Everton idea now will be what we have we hold, Transfer listed Oscar Hold revolutionized the attack with his speed spirit confidence and shooting and Everton at last broke through to a win which must give them all the confidence they need. Eglington too, was brilliant and Potts had quite his best day. Sunderland’s only goal came from a mistake by Sagar, who is by way of being the Everton mascot. Everton have won on his two appearances this season. Everton; Sagar, goal; Clinton and Moore, backs; Grant, T.E. Jones, and Farrell (captain), half-backs; Fielding, Hold, McIntosh, Potts, and Eglington, forwards. Sunderland; Mapson, goal Stelling and Hudgell, backs; Watson, Walsh and A. Wright, half-backs; T. Wright, Broadis, Ford, Shackleton, and Reynolds, forwards. Referee; Mr. P.F. Power (York). A grand tackle by Stelling on Eglington, stopped that winger when he was almost in full flight and two decisions against Potts –both fouls- held up Everton attacks of some promise.
A Super Move
Everton’s goal at six minutes came in the first real attack, and was the result of such a superb move it ranks as one of the best seen on the ground for seasons. McIntosh started it far out by lobbing the ball to bamboozle Walsh and there followed between McIntosh, Fielding and Hold a straight down the centre interexchange with Hold calling for the ball from Fielding, getting it and going on only a stride or two before delivering a first rate shot. it was possible to see, not only sense, the vitalizing of Everton by this happy turn of events, and Potts came along with a header from Eglington’s corner which seemed certain to add to the lead until Mapson brought off a grand two handed catch. Then, with Everton sizzling with enthusiasm and new-found confidence, came another good attack in which McIntosh with a right-foot shot, swung the ball a bit too high and wide to be on the mark or to give Eglington a heading chance.
Eglington Makes it Two
No sooner had Sagar punched away when challenged strongly by Ford, who fell heavily in the clash then Everton went two up. McIntosh part in the initiation of the goal was a small one, but he was injured in the process and was lying in need of attention all the time the goal was being made and taken. Hold was responsible for the telling pass which Eglington, this time took on and inwards until it seemed he must lose the ball and his scoring chance. But when he decided to strike the shot was a terrific one, and gave Mapson little chance. This happened at 22 minutes. In the next minute Ford, from almost outside right had centred and Sagar had failed to catch the ball, succeeding only in palming it to the feet of Broadis for whom the chance was childs play. So at 2-1 so early there were visions of a repetition of that famous 6-4 against the same club. Farrell standing just outside the box, volleyed in a surprise shot which Mapson did exceptionally well to reach, and Ford, with a left foot shot from a left wing centre by outside right T.Wright was within feet of making the scorers level again. Wright’s part in this spread-eagling Sunderland attack was one which had the Everton defence hopelessly out of the picture.
Hold’s The Key
When attempting to pinpoint the difference in Everton’s attack, one could not get away from the belief that the enterprising and lively Hold was the man chiefly responsible for it all. He was so full of confidence, too. Fortunately for Sunderland, the referee caught sight of the too-obvious handling by McIntosh as the ball beat his head from a Fielding centre. There were gasps when Ford none-too-well angled hit a fierce shot right across the Everton goal face. Grant and Jones were the main barriers to a Sunderland who moved with speed and good ideas. But again Everton made the going this time with a goal to Potts at 35 minutes. Eglington should certainly have scored from a McIntosh header so made-to-measure that he was able to go on almost to where he had scored from previously but this time. Mapson came out and the ball cannoned away from his body to a point five yards outside the penalty area and directly in line was goal. Then with the Sunderland defence all at sea and with Mapson hoplessly placed, Potts hit a box-at-a-venture shot which found a way beyond everyone.
Peter Farrell remonstrated with Ford after Jones had been put to earth as Ford came in and although Ford protested that he had done nothing wrong it was plain that Farrell though otherwise. Hold’s quick feinting and his general liveliness was quite outstanding and when one considers the cost of the Sunderland attack as compared to this next-to-nothing Britton buy, it was almost ludicrous that a man like Hold should be in such command here.
Half-time; Everton 3, Sunderland 1.
The second half started very tentatively until Ford unmistakably won a corner but found the linesman ruining a goal-kick. An astonishing decision. Sunderland try as they would could not get moving smoothly, and Jones was not often dismayed by the wiles of Ford although he was playing such a safety-first game he was not bothered overmuch what he did with the ball after winning it against Ford.
Bump and a Miss
Hold, giving a bump and taking one from Hudgell, won the ball from a long oblique pass, and stood nicely placed well inside the penalty area for an at-his-leisure shot. To the dismay of everyone he hit the ball wide. It was an important miss because it could have clinched the issue beyond all doubt. Fielding was not quite practical enough or crisp enough with his passes inside, and Everton were not so menacing this half until Grant who had a good game, refused to be beaten, and came along the touch-line after a successful tackle to produce a first-rate through pass for Fielding, whose long-distance shot of much power was held quite easily by Mapson.
Mapson Takes a Blow
The only danger now was the growing mist. Mapson took a blow to the hip when punching away from an Eglington free kick, and being at hand to make another catch from a header by Potts. More than ever am I convinced that it was the gallantry and spirit of the lightly-built Hold which was meaning so much to Everton. The crowd, for their part were well satisfied to acclaim Jones’s work against Ford, though at this moment Jones misjudged the bound of the ball as it came through and Ford went on attended by a retinue of defenders to shoot wide. Eglington was having a great day and after Moore and Farrell had worked a most practical free kick ruse which in effect gave Farrell a centring chance free of charge, Eglington turned the ball with an acrobatic left foot action that was not far from surprising Mapson. A McIntosh-Hold duel, which concluded with McIntosh hitting a low shot very little were was another good Everton attack.
Shackleton should have made it 3-2 but went on with Grant at hand, and eventually finished up by putting the ball into the side betting. A first-class chance, gone for nought. Everton, hereabout were almost irresistible again. An Eglington shot hit the bar and following up an Mapson went for the rebound, he forced the goalkeeper to concede a corner. When Hold was given offside on receiving an Eglington pass McIntosh plainly said something which caused the referee to have words with him.
Fielding’s Penalty Miss
A penalty award came Everton’s way when McIntosh instead of making a left wing pass dummed his way to a straight through move in which he was brought down by Wright (A.) and another. The penalty award was immediately but before it could be taken McIntosh needed attention and at one time he appeared to be a stretcher case. Fortunately this assistance was not required. There was much palaver over the taking of the penalty by Fielding who almost tore his bal that he should pull the ball so chronically wide. The referee consulted a linesman over some infringement which had occurred but evidently it must have been one by Everton because the penalty was not ordered to be retaken. Potts was shooting at all angles and the third of his efforts in the space of a few minutes, Mapson edged on to and over the bar. The light was now particularly bad and Sunderland with a packet goal, and Hold in possessed five yards out, were a lucky side to escape goal number four. Final; Everton 3, Sunderland 1. Official Attendance 46,060.
BLACKBURN ROVERS RES V EVERTON RES
November 25, 1950. The Liverpool Football Echo
Blackburn Rovers Res; Johnson, goal; Gray and Higgins, backs; McKee, Holiday and Horton, half-backs; Kenny, Chadwick, Priday, Hailstone, And Edds, forwards. Everton Res; O’Neill, goal; Saunders and Rankin, backs; Bentham, Falder and Smith, half-backs; Gibson, Donovan, Catterick, Hampson and Parker, forwards. Referee; Mr. H. Freeman (Preston). The Everton goal survived a narrow escape when Falder, pushing the ball back to his keeper by-passed him and narrowly missed his own ne. The second onslaught set Everton back a goal. O’Neill parried a shot and Hailstone crashed in the rebounding ball with the Everton keeper still on the ground. In one of the Blues’ attacks Johnson did well to save on the turn from Gibson. Everton should have had an equalizer after 20 minutes, but Donovan having beaten his man, muffed a glorious chance and put yards wide from the six yard line.
Half-time; Blackburn Rovers Res 1, Everton Res Nil.
Everton were much more assertive but the strong home defence prevented then troubling keeper Johnson. When Blackburn broke away, O’Neill cleverly took his centre off the heads of two forwards. Catterick narrowly failed to snap up Johnson’s half clearance.
GEO. BURNETT ON “WHY I WAS DROPPED”
November 27, 1950. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 3, Sunderland 1
By Leslie Edwards
Three startling things happened at Goodison Park on Saturday. Everton won handsomely, nay, brilliantly, George Burnett, the goalkeeper, who lost his place, in the match to Ted Sagar, told me of his determination to ask, again, for a transfer, and a player, who must be nameless did something after the final whistle for which the referee could still have offered him off if he sensed what happened. Fortunately the player’s aim was no better than it had been all afternoon. I must add that he was not an Everton player. Leaving the story of Everton’s gala for the moment, let us concentrate on the case of Burnett. He is not so disturbed at losing his place –one recalls he was twice come off the transfer list to save his club –as at one reason behind it. Burnett played in the Everton side beaten at Wolverhampton, and could be said to be blameless. Although he had a cold last week it was not this, I gather which caused his displacement on Saturday. Burnett told me. “I lost my place not because my club thought I had played badly, but because I was said to have been guilty, in the match at Wolverhampton of misconduct. I have denied the accusation and so have other players who saw the incident in which Hancocks was injured. “I am so fed up with the whole thing I feel like finishing with football. I have even been down to where I used to be employed to ask whether I can have my job back,” Burnett added. The player’s immediate reaction to make a third application to his club to be placed on the transfer list and his inclination to forsake football altogether is a very natural one. But it must be resisted. He is too good a goalkeeper –even admitting as he does that he does not know it all –to be lost to the game. Indeed, Sagar, who should be a great judge of goalkeepers, says that Burnett, with more experience could be among goalkeeping greats. Burnett’s application to be “listed” will be made early this week. It will detail his case and give further denial to the allegation that he did anything wrong at Wolverhampton.
How easily clubs and the public and the Press can be wrong is part of a chapter which can be written this morning on Oscar Hold, whom we had seen three times before this season, prior to his magnificent work against Sunderland. In one earlier game, at least he showed signs of form which brought him a hat-trick in Everton’s Swedish tour last close season, in another he most certainly failed to fit and convinced everyone that he was on what Everton needed in their revival bid. Now, he swept aside all previous assessment of his value in as striking and spirited a conception of inside forward play as we have seen for years at Goodison Park. His goal-making and taking early in the game was so well done Everton caught his “cheeky” mood and came out of their long mist of indecision to repeat their Spurs form, but this time with the result never in doubt. Hold who asked for his transfer only a week ago, is here to stay. Anyone who can inject life and enthusiasm and sharpness into a forward line which has lacked these qualities so long must be given every chance. The attack with Hold darting into the open spaces and almost generalling the line, was so unrecognizably good that the wonder was Everton scored only three times. Fielding’s penalty miss and Eglington’s bar-striking misfortune were partly responsible, too, and so was Mapson’s good goalkeeping. Ironically lucky omen goalkeeper Sagar, who had so little to do misfielding the ball off which Broadis was to score for Sunderland. Everton followers have been forced too long to remain dumb. Here, once that clockwork Fielding, McIntosh, Hold move had ended so gloriously –a classic which may well prove to be the beginning of the club’s long-heralded new era –the new and confident Everton thrived on encouragement and Potts began to show some doubters that even a £20,000 player needs solid support before he can begin to feel at home. Potts tackled well and shot even better. His snap taking of the ball, which careered from Eglington’s shot via Mapson was quick-thinking and his long and truly-driven shots which followed were always liable to add to his bag.
Sunderland, with their Broadis and Shackleton and Ford, were hardly compatible with Everton’s front line in which Eglington gave further indication of his throughful winging and Fielding blossomed in happy partnership with the day’s bright particular star. In such a line for the prompting of McIntosh, who has been consistently good for so long, proceeded necessary results. Sunderland did so little by way of threatening Everton’s 3-1 interval lead one wonders what can be their fate this season despite their big “buys” Ford so carefully managed by Jones found himself too often at close quarters to roam and dummy as he likes, and Grant and Farrell catching the infectious confidence of the attack did well enough to keep others quiet. Only at full back did Everton look ordinary and fortunately it was a day on which neither Sunderland winger had inspiration. With the ice broken unmistakably, and I submit, so markedly by Hold’s incoming. Everton may well fulfill our promise that they need only a couple of wins to be in the mood to regain their lost ground. This match, more than any other, indicated that the club’s place at the bottom of the League table is wholly misleading and that they will be soon making their way from it. For the club and particularly for manager Cliff Britton (whose mission this week-end takes him away until tomorrow) the Sunderland win must have been the most encouraging of football signs.
• Blackburn Res 3, Everton Res 0
• Earlestown Reserves 0, Everton “B” 2
EIRE 2, NORWAY 2
November 27, 1950. The Daily Post
Eire two goals down at one stage of their international with Norway at Dalymount Park, Dublin yesterday staged a magficent recovery. Tommy Eglington playing for Eire.
IS THIS THE TURNING?
November 27, 1950. The Liverpool Echo
Manner of Everton’s Victory Renews Hope for Future
Mr. Cliff Britton crossed to Dublin on a scouting mission at yesterday’s game between Eire and Norway with a much lighter heart than he has had for many weeks. Although it is early yet to start the bells pealing he felt that Everton’s convincing victory over Sunderland carries hope for the future. Is also propounded some knotty problems for Fielding was a more effective right-winger than the absent Buckle has been of late, and Hold, placed on the transfer list barely a week ago, played so well that the board must now question the wisdom of letting him go, at least until the club is finally clear of the danger. On the showing Hold is still a useful man in an emergency. With Catterick, Wainwright and Buckle likely to be fit for a senior duty very shortly, Everton’s biggest trouble may soon be whom to leave out of the attack. That’s better than being at their wit’s end who to put in yet it has drawbacks. If Everton can provide us with displays like this in their remaining games some of the Goodison supporters accustomed for so long to nothing very much about which to enthuse will begin to wonder whether they can stand the strain. The score did not tell anything like the full story. If only Potts and Hold in particular, and the rest of the forwards in lesser degree, had been more accurate in direction or had better luck when they were on the target Everton might have won this game by double the margin.
Opposition Was Poor
While the victory, all the more welcome because it coincided with home defeats elsewhere which reduced Everton’s leeway to a single point, considerably lightens the Goodison horizon, one must temper rejoicing at the side’s much improved display with remembrance of the poorness of the opposition. Mapson apart, Sunderland were a shaky lot in defence. Everton had them with their tongues hanging out long before the finish. As for the much-vaunted and expensive Sunderland attack it looked as much like value for what it has cost as a Mersey ferryboat like the Queen’s Mary. Jones sliced Ford’s £30,000 label to ribbons and Grant and Farrell put Shackleton and Broadis in the “ordinary” class. Snappier tackling, smarter combination quicker shooting and better finishing made Everton look anything but a bottom-of-the-table team. The value of the victory is greater than the two vital points it brought. It was so convincing and solid that it should give the team much greater confidence in its next few games. As these are against fairly lowly-placed clubs, Saturday’s triumph may well mark the start of better things. Everton’s future will largely depend on their performance between now and the end of the year.
It was good to see Potts in better form. Though still a bit-slow at times and now over-strong in his challenge for the ball, he distributed it well and shot hard and often. If he keeps this up he will soon look more like the size of his fees. McIntosh led the line well, Eglington got a goal and might have had three –the bar robbed him once – and Fielding, though apt to wander somewhat usually did so to good purpose. He also served up many fine centres. It was Hold, however, who was the big surprise. His well-taken goal worthily crowned a brilliant bit of combination, he provided the pass which made the second and all through he was moving into the open spaces in intelligent fashion. Grant had a good game, and the rest of the defence played a solid part in earning the victory, even if Sagar’s only slip did prevent Broadis with a grit goal. But I should be happier if the halves and backs went into the tackle first time. They still retreat too much for my liking. Everton used a reliable penalty-taker, Buckle would have been the man to take the spot kick had be been present. A deputy who can do the needful in absence is vital. Fielding’s miss might have been expensive against some sides. Sunderland showed occasional glimpses of what we had expected from so expenses a side but between the spasms of danger were long periods when they looked almost dumb-struck and bewildered.
George Burnett told me on Saturday that he is so upset at the reason given for his being dropped from the Everton team against Sunderland that he is seriously considering “packing up” football altogether and returning to his ship-repairing job. I hope he chances his mind. He would eventually regret it if he carried out his threat. According to Burnett’s version, he was advised his omission was not because he played badly against Wolves the previous week, but because of a foul he is alleged to have perpetrated on Hancock. I was not at Wolverhampton, but Burnett assures me he was not responsible for Hancock’s injury, and that his clubmates can also testify to this effect. “I was some yards from him at the time,” he added. No doubt Manager Britton will clear the air on his return from Dublin. Twice Burnett has come back to Everton’s aid after being on the transfer list. In their present position they can hardly contemplate again losing his services.
EVERTON TEAM SPIRIT IS REWARDED
November 27, 1950. The Evening Express
Victory Against Sunderland Well Deserved
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
The grand team spirit of Everton which not always has been truly rewarded by results this season, was typified at the week-end by Wally Fielding, the little Londoner, who has signed direct from the Army. The Fielding gesture is a true point to Everton’s revival. Manager Cliff Britton, who never for a second has lost his complete faith in his players, while appreciating that they may not be the finest team in the country, was faced with the problem either of playing a youngster as deputy for Ted Buckle against Sunderland in an all important game or of relying on experience. Eventually he decided that it would hardly be fair to place so much responsibility on a young player and so plumped for experience and Fielding. From Cliff’s point of view it was not quite as simple as that, for Fielding is an inside left who has been playing quite willingly at inside right. On Friday Manager Britton wanted Fielding to become a wing forward. He had a talk with Fielding and mentioned what he desired Fielding came back immediately with the response; “If you want me to be outright-right. Boos then I’ll play outside right. I’ll play anywhere, where you think I can help the club.” That is typical of these Everton players, who more than any others know that their lack of success is not due to lack of ability or of the want of trying. Manage, Britton said to me; “You saw today how well the team can play, and it is my opinion that all along they have been playing well, operating the same moves which brought this success. The play always has been there, and against Sunderland things just for once came off. The ball went into the net instead of touching an outstretched foot and being diverted.” That is just it, but the good play of the Everton players ‘ensured that things came off for them. Fielding responded magnificently to the needs of the club, being not only an exceptionally good winger, but seeking the play –far more than do many regular outside forwards, and also drifting into the centre to at once become a menacing threat to Sunderland safety. The choice of Fielding as Buckle’s deputy was, in my opinion, fine move by Manager Britton.
November 27, 1950. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Everton’s success over Sunderland was so complete that for the first time this season it would be unfair to single out any particular player. They all did well, so that to individualize would reflect on good, fighting players who operated as a real team against a team so uncertain, that they never seemed to be in the game with a chance. I must refer to some of the pleasing so far as individuals are concerned and nothing gave me greater satisfaction than the magnificence of Tommy Jones against the £30,000 Ford. The cost-nothing Jones remained unperturbed by Ford’s roving and virility and just packed Ford away in his box and closed the lid. Oscar Hold crashed back at inside right with a display (especially in the first half) which makes every Everton followers yearning for the news that Hold is no longer for transfer, Secretary Manager Fred Emery, of Bradford, came along to watch Hold, despite the fact that his boys were playing a cup-tie at Chester, and mentioned to me that he thought Hold would suit him admirably. I agree, but Everton, at the moment, can afford to let no one go. Harry Potts has taken time to settle down and to live down the fact that he cost £20,000, but here was a sample of the real energetic, hard-shooting penetrative force we knew at Burnley. It would be wrong to ignore the obvious influence which the Ted Sagar presence had on the team. It was patent. This Everton literally made the ball run for them, and the fates will always help those who help themselves.
EVERTON’S CUP TICKET PLAN
November 28, 1950. The Liverpool Echo
The allocation of Cup-tie tickets has been a bone of contention among senior club supporters ever since the post-war boom led to too many people chasing too few tickets. In the past the loyal and regular follower often found himself left out in the cold. Everton have instituted a scheme designed as far as humanly possible, to cut out the “spivs” market operators and ensure that the tickets get into the right hands. All season ticket holders’ books include a voucher for cup-tie tickets, and at last Saturday’s game against Sunderland ordinary pay-at-the-gate stand patrons got a voucher in the form of an envelope with will entitle them also to priority in allocation. It read; - This voucher entitles the holder to one cup-tie ticket for the first cup-tie of the season in which Everton are drawn at home, but is not valid for any replay or away game. The application must be made in this envelope, with the correct remittance and a stamped addressed envelope. If your friends have similar envelopes and you require seats together you must enclose the additional vouchers for which extra tickets are required.” Everton’s plan was kept very secret beforehand, for obvious reasons, but as thing turned out the gate on Saturday (46,060) was higher than anticipated. After the club has distributed tickets they have no control over what the purchasers do with them, but at least they have made an effort to see that they get into the hands of people who are most likely to be regular supporters. The scheme applies only to stand tickets. It does not affect paddock or terrace supporters, who will continue to pay at the gate. As the club has to set aside a quarter of its seating accommodation for the visitors, obviously everybody did not get a voucher on Saturday. The earliest patrons were the lucky ones. Although this scheme is not ideal – comparative regulars who were absent or came late would miss the bus – it is as near perfection as can be got without taking on an involved and complicated system with which there is not the staff to cope.
EVERTON TICKETS FOR BLUES
November 28, 1950. The Evening Express
Goodison Extension of Their Cup-Tie Plan
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Everton are ensuring that the loyal supporters of the club get the first refusal on tickets for F,A. Cup matches at Goodison Park this season. To club will be concerned in the draw which takes place on Monday, December 11, for the games to be played on Saturday, January 6. From the outset of the season the object of Everton has been to give the people who support the club in fair weather or foul the privilege of securing cup tie tickets. As announced in “Pilot Present” last August, each share holder’s and member’s ticket for the season contains vouchers of varying colours representing the different stages of the Cup, and which will give those ticketholders a priority. The scheme was taken a step farther last Saturday, much to the delight of grandstand patrons. One regular follower of the local clubs contracted me and said; “I had a great and welcome surprise on Saturday, if Everton are drawn at home in the Cup third round I shall be getting a ticket. “When I paid my admission money to the Gwlady’s Street stand I was handed by the gateman a voucher which will being me a cup ticket if Everton are drawn at home. It’s a comforting thought.” The voucher (in the form of envelopes) reads; This voucher entitles the holder to one cup-tie ticket for the first cup-tie of the 1950-51 season in which Everton are drawn at home, but is not valid for any replay or away game. The application must be made in this envelope, with the correct remittance and a stamped addressed envelope. If your friends have similar envelopes and your require seats together, enclose the additional voucher for which extra tickets are asked.”
This is a major set forward in the endeavour to ensure that the people who attend the League matches are not left on the outside when there is a Cup-tie. Everton since the war the demand for stand seats has grown beyond all expectations, and clubs have been endeavouring to formulate a scheme whereby the “regulars” are first serve” for the Cup-tie tickets. Well this Everton idea is a step in the right direction and I think Everton did quite correctly in not letting it be known that vouchers were being distributed for the Sunderland game. Had it been announced then thousands of people who do not regularly support football, but who are always trying to get cup tickets would have been at the game. Well, Everton kept a secret to ensure that only those who are real supporters received vouchers. No doubt Everton plan to distribute more, vouchers at subsequent home games but which game will be kept a closely guarded secret, Everton tickets for Evertonians is the Everton motto.
MR. BRITTON SHEDS THE LOAD
November 30, 1950. The Liverpool Daily Post
By Leslie Edwards
Everton manager Cliff Britton, is blessed with the happiest of dispositions. He is unrelenting in his work, but no matter how things go, he does not worry. Many in football –Matt Busby, Tom Whittaker and others less renowed –envy him this gift. A week ago the Britton mountain of trouble included a team which often looked like winning, but rarely, but rarely did a transfer request by Oscar Hold, and a pack of injuries which took an unconscionable time to heal. On Saturday the side won and convincingly and the player so keen to go was the man who contributed more than anyone to this happy state of affairs. Thus two Britton worries disappeared in one afternoon. On Saturday evening, after being at Goodison Park, manager Britton was off to Dublin to see Eglington play for Ireland on Sunday. On Tuesday evening he was back in Liverpool to learn, that goalkeeper George Burnett was asking for the transfer –news which did not dismay him at all. He is already on the transfer list,” was his reply, “So the position us unchanged,” Sometimes early in the week the iniquitous Britton put on at Bellefield, for the benefit of Luton and Sheffield Wednesday emissaries, a practice game to show off Higgins, the forward Everton decided to transfer when his Bogota suspension lifts this evening. Then at midnight on Tuesday, the anywhere-for-football Everton manager entrained for Glasgow to see the inter-league match and be on hand lest someone mention a player to be had for love of money. Luton Town Manager, “Dally” Duncan last night awaited the Britton return because he is keen to sign Higgins today to get some goals in his “for” column. The pretty-pretty play his side have put up so far this season only pleases spectators and opponents whose eyes are for more tangible rewards. Last night Luton were sounding Liverpool on Higgins’ character. The answer they received was that few in the game could measure his enthusiasm his sportsmanship and his clear living. All Luton have to do is to sign a cheque for £6,000. Everton I understand are not concerned about any deal in which there is a player exchange.
EVERTON ARE UNCHANGED
November 30, 1950. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Teams for Villa Park Duel
Everton will take the conquerors of Sunderland to Villa Park on Saturday, to face Aston Villa in search of second away victory of the season. This means that Ted Sagar will be making his 433rd Football league appearance and that Wally Fielding continues to operate at outside right as partner to Oscar Hold. Eddie Wainwright and Harry Catterick who have made such excellent progress recently towards recovery from their injuries, will be given a try-out with the Central League team against Blackpool Reserves at Goodison Park. Everton; Sagar; Clinton, Moore; Grant, Jones, Farrell; Fielding, Hold, McIntosh, Potts, Eglington. The return of John Hindle in goal, after three weeks for Welsh is the only change in the Villa side, which is; Hindle; Parkes, Dorsett; Powell, Martyn, Moss (F); Gibson, Thompson, Craddock, Dixon, Smith (C).