EVERTON LOOKED GOOD UNTIL THEY CAME TO TESTING BARTRAM
October 1, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton 0, Charlton 1
It was an uncommon Everton today. Good in the first half when Bartram defied them, but poor and uncertain in the second. It was an unfortunate goal, however, that beat them, scored by their own full back, Dugdale. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Farrell, Jones (captain), and Lello, half-backs; Corr, Wainwright, Higgins, Powell, and McIntosh, forwards. Charlton Athletic; Bartram, goal; Campbell and Shreeve, backs; Forbes, Phipps, and Reveil, half-backs; Hurst, O’Linn, Vaughan, Purves and Brown, forwards. Referee; Mr. J.G. Williams, (Nottingham). The day was more ideal for football than it has been for some weeks, for there was a nice cooling breeze in the air. There was the usual big crowd and amongst it was Mr. Herbert Powell, the secretary of the Welsh F.A. who was here looking at Tom Jones and Aubrey Powell with a view to their match with England at Cardiff in a fortnight’s time. Another bit of information is that A.D. Mercer, of Torquay United who is the holder of the professional footballer’s golf championship, but who cannot play, will be in attendance at Childwall on Monday as a spectator. Everton attacked the Gwlady’s Street goal and were the first to strike a blow of any importance. It was Powell who engineered the movement which had the Charlton defence in rather a tight corner, for when he offered Corr a short pass the Irish winger swept the ball into the goalmouth, but it passed over everyone’s head and away to safely. Then Charlton made their first sold attack when Vaughan and O’Linn got together on the right wing, and Dugdale, in his effort to ease the situation, put the ball back to his goalkeeper. But he had lifted his effort and instead of the ball going to Sagar it passed over his head, bounced in front of goal, and over the line. This was at five minutes and a piece of extreme bad luck for Everton, but these things can creep into any goal. The goal certainly heartened the Athletic, and for the next few minutes they were in Everton territory, and two of their forwards tried to improve the shining hour with long shots, neither of which were on the mark. This remark could not apply to Powell, who, after veering over to the right flank, made a hook shot of full value, and Bartram had to act swiftly to keep the ball out of the net. He did so at the expense of a corner. This action led to another Everton attack, and Powell came along with another shot, which was deflected but even with the deflection Bartram was able to save.
Jones cleverly and calmly put a stopper on Vaughan, and later Bartram had to drop on a ball from the Everton left flank. But a more dangerous moment for the Charlton goalkeeper was when a Higgins shot tested him to the full. The crossfield pass is not used so often nowadays but Wainwright exploited it when he swept the ball right across to McIntosh just too high for Campbell to do anything about it, and the Everton outside left closed in, preparatory to making a shot, but while in the act Phipps rushed right across his path and took the ball on his body to save Bartram any further worries. I thought Powell was having a magnificent game. He was here, there and everywhere, making openings, and defending when need demanded. Corr and Higgins combined to beat the Charlton defence, and from the resultant corner, Jones’s header almost beat Bartram, who was lucky to get the ball away.
A little later Powell came along with a fast low shot which tested Bartram’s ability to the full. It seemed to me that Powell was playing himself into the Welsh team, for I have not seen him play better since he came to Everton. Hereabout Charlton made an effort to increase their goal tally and Sagar had to come out and punch away a bouncing ball from Vaughan. The next half minute saw Charlton even more aggressive, and Hurst once came swinging through and hit a mighty shot which crashed against the upright.
Bartram must have made some wonder saves on Merseyside. But he never made a better than his one handed save of a McIntosh drive which looked all over a winner, Bartram, however, flung out his right hand and turned the ball aside. The Everton defence was not quite so confidence as usual, and Dugdale once again almost beat his own goalkeeper with another pass-back. Later a ball from the Charlton right wing sped right across the Everton goalmouth, but there was no one there to take up the challenge, so that ultimately Jones was able to come along and clear. Another corner came to Everton but it was safely disposed of with less than a minute to go. But it was Charlton who had the last say in the half when Vaughan from outside right, dropped a ball right into Sagar’s hands.
Half-time; Everton 0, Charlton Athletic 1.
Everton were not long in winning a corner, and Jones came up to do his stuff, but all he got for his endeavour was a cut on the eyebrow in a collision. He received attention, and after a minute or two was able to resume, carrying a handker-chief.
Bartram’s Iron Grip
Corr had a few bad minutes when nothing seemed to go right for him. When he got the ball safely under control he either made a bad pass or gave it to an opponent, and it was not until Powell came along with a fast, low shot, which Bartram took in his iron grip, that Everton had a little relief. Higgins was injured slightly and although Everton were mostly on the attack they were still unable to find that shot which would mean so much to them. Actually Charlton came closest to making goal No 2 when Forbes joined up with his forwards and almost blasted the ball through. It was then that Sagar’s anticipation proved of such value.
Nothing Goes Right
Everton at times simply brushed aside the Charlton defence without however, causing is fall. On balance Everton should not only have cleared off their deficit, but taken a lead. The ball was not running too kindly for them. They had struck a spell when nothing would go right. passes which had previously found their man were now going to the opposition. The all-important goal just would not come. Everton were trying hard for it, but by the same token Charlton’s defence were trying hard to prevent it, and what is more were succeeding.
In The Net-Off-side!
Shreeve almost did what his counterpart Dugdale had done, -score against his own side. Jones had taken a free kick and sent the ball out to McIntosh, who centred rather speedily. Shreeve got his head to the ball and turned it just outside his own upright. Bartram had to deal with another Everton corner, and this was followed by a strong attack on the part of Everton, and Powell actually headed the ball into the Charlton net but was ruled offside. A correct decision in my opinion.
There was a tense moment when Jones chased back to the loose ball with the intention of passing it back to Sagar, who was standing just inside the penalty area. In the meantime Vaughan had come along to get between Jones and the goalkeeper, and the intended back pass clattered against Vaughan, who collected the ball, but was then challenged by Jones, who took it from him with a tackle from the rear. Some claimed a penalty, but the referee saw nothing wrong and allowed play to proceed. It was Bartram again who stood between Everton and the equalizer. Everyone else was beaten to a frazzle and it seemed that even Bartram would yield to a header by Wainwright, for the ball was travelling away from him. But he sprang right across his goal and stopped the ball on the goal-line. Everton changed their forward formation and McIntosh went to centre forward in the hope of bringing success. A free kick taken by Jones promised a goal, but Bartram had no trouble in dealing with it. Bartram twice stepped in to upset the workings of the Everton attack which was not trying desperately hard to save the day. Final; Everton 0, Charlton 1. Official Attendance, 45,557.
ASTON VILLA RES V EVERTON RES
October 1, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Aston Villa; Rutherford, goal; Aldis and Harrison, backs; Canning, Moss (A.), and Millington, half-backs; Hinett, Wright, Howarth, Bullock, and Smith (H.), forwards. Everton Res; Burnett, goal; Moore and Rankin, backs; Lindley, Falder, and Grant, half-backs; Gibson, Fielding, Catterick, Hampson, and Eglington, forwards. Referee; Mr. H.J. Peathsbridge (Macclesfield). Everton dominated the play. Their forward work was much too clever for the Villa defence. Unfortunately their finishing was not on a par with their approach work. Catterick twice failed with good openings. In Villa’s occasional attacks Burnett showed what a capable goalkeeper he is. Just on half-time Moss missed a penalty for the Villa, the ball striking the crossbar. Half-time; Aston Villa Reserves 0, Everton Reserves 0
DUGDALE PUTS THROUGH OWN GOAL
October 1, 1949. The Evening Express
Lob Goes Over Sagar’s Head
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Everton, seeking their first home win over Charlton Athletic in post-war days, had Tommy Jones fit when Charlton appeared at Goodison Park today. Athletic had Purves, the young north-easterner at inside left. A.B. Mercer of Torquay United, the holder of the professional footballers golf championship, has arrived on Merseyside for the 1949 championship to be played at Childwall on Monday, although he is not now eligible to compete. Mercer had made the trip specially to be present to see his successor as champion. The Goodison enthusiasts had their first look at Everton’s newly formed attack which produced two goals at Villa Park last week. The winning of the toss in view of the strong sunshine was of vital importance. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Farrell, Jones (captain), and Lello, half-backs; Corr, Wainwright, Higgins, Powell, and McIntosh, forwards. Charlton Athletic; Bartram, goal; Campbell and Shreeve, backs; Forbes, Phipps, and Reveil, half-backs; Hurst, O’Linn, Vaughan, Purves and Brown, forwards. Referee; Mr. J.G. Williams, (Nottingham). Charlton had won the toss but elected to face the sun, and from Jones’s free kick, Powell raced across field, taking the defence with him, and he enabled Corr to centre accurately only for the ball to sweep far beyond everyone to comparative safety. In the scramble Revell was injured and he lay for some moments in the goalmouth because the ball remained in play. Eventually he was able to carry on to see Everton attack smoothly. And after Higgins had been baulked, Powell hit one on the half volley, but Bartram was in perfect position to save. In five minutes the Athletic took the lead. This was a sensational goal for it was a gift from Dugdale, the Everton left back. Dugdale and O’Linn were going to a ball running towards the Everton goal-line, and Dugdale endeavoured to hook-the ball back to Sagar, who was rushing out. Unfortunately Dugdale got too far under the ball and it lobbed over Sagar’s head plumb into the far corner of the net, and Dugdale stood dumbfounded. Everton were almost level two minutes later, it was only a glorious save by Sam Bartram which turned a grand right-foot shot by Powell over the top.
Powell had cut from inside-left to inside-right before making his effort. Powell was there to shoot again from Wainwright’s pass when Everton kept up the pressure, and then a grand run by Farrell was ended by sheer weight of numbers. Farrell’s free kick, enabled Wainwright to head in strongly. Bartram saving high up. The tragedy of this opening seemed greater when one reflects that the goal came from Charlton’s only attack up to that point and this was the second goal in succession against Everton at Goodison produced by defensive error, for the Wolves’ winning goal in the last home game was due to a defensive misunderstanding. Sagar had to dash out to save a centre from Hurst as O’Linn dashed in and then Bartram dived to save a low centre from McIntosh. Forbes ran back to hold up a dangerous Wainwright raid before Wainwright and McIntosh combined cleverly only for Mcntosh to misplace his final pass. Higgins burst through enterprisingly to let go a glorious left foot shot to which Bartram leapt and beat away. Wainwright got the defence moving all the wrong way with a glorious pass to McIntosh who cut through to make a low centre which struck Bartram’s body and went behind. Powell’s cross-field passes were opening up the game beautifully for Everton and he suddenly swung Wainwright and Corr into the game. Wainwright defying a challenge to get in a low centre to which Higgins dived gallantly only to find the ball going a yard wide.
DUGDALE IN OWN-GOAL TRAGEDY
October 3, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 0, Charlton 1
A defensive error in five minutes, which culminated in Dugdale lobbing the ball over his own goalkeeper’s head and into the net led to the only goal of the match. Tragedy “Yes, but there was still plenty of time to erase the error, and erased it would have been had it not been for Sam Bartram, the Charlton goalkeeper, who seems to save his best for Liverpool football followers. He defied Everton at a point when safe custodianship was most necessary. One save bordered on the miraculous a one-handed one from a mighty drive by McIntosh. Long after Dugdale’s goal Sagar had idle moments but try as they would the Everton forwards could not break down the Charlton defence, Powell had two shots turned aside and others had their fling until Bartram must have appeared to be a giant to the Everton forwards. After the interval the game deteriorated. Mistakes are bound to creep into any game, but I have rarely seen so many. The link-up which had made Everton a striking force in the first half vanished and in its stead we had a spate of missed passes. It was most tantalizing to watch. Some said the ball would not run for Everton. Would it not be more honest to say Everton did not make the ball run? There was plenty of endeavour, but it was not the kind to outwit Phipps and company. The forward line was changed but it did no better than the original. Herbert Powell, Welsh F.A. secretary would be pleased with what he saw of Powell and Jones in the first half. He must have been as mystified as we all were over the second. Charlton were no better than Everton, Sagar had considerably less to do than Bartram, the Charlton defence, easily praised open to the first half was on top in the second. I thought Dugdale would retrieve himself when he ran the ball into the Charlton penalty are and promised to counteract his first goal with a second but it was a promise that failed.
BLUES ARE SLIPPING
October 3, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Everton’s Forward Failings
No Punch in Penalty Area
There is always a fly in the ointment somewhere. While it is good to see Liverpool doing so well Everton’s recent falling away after their encouraging start is beginning to land them too near the lower rungs for comfort. Two points out of the last ten played for is the Blues disappointing return. There is little consolation in the fact that they should have beaten Charlton just as they should have got both points from Wolves. It was doubly galling that Charlton should “steal” a victory through a gift in the first five minutes due to Dugdale’s unfortunate error, but Everton’s attack should have done better than it did. The Blues’ forwards, tested Bartram in the full in the first half, and found him in brilliant form, making several outstanding saves. Yet in the second portion, when Charlton were rarely out of their own half, the only shot of note the visiting keeper had to save was a piled river from Wainwright. Everton fought hard enough, but there wasn’t any punch in the line to translate their territorial supremacy into a concrete advantage. McIntosh and Corr each had a bad day, Wainwright ran himself out Powell dazed away after a good first half, and Higgins, though a galliant trier, lacked the support which a centre forward has a right to expect if he is to make any impression. Undoubtedly his early lapse upset Dugdale who was nervy and uncertain all the first half. Even Tommy Jones normally impregnable against any shocks made an occasional slip. Saunders was the best back on the field, however, and Everton’s wing halves did all that could have been expected. But the side as a whole still leaves much to be desired, particularly in attack, where recent “changes for sixpence” showed little sign of solving long-standing problems. The need for greater punch in the forward line is becoming increasingly evident. Birmingham apart Everton have scored fewer goals than any other senior side. The danger of this is obvious especially if the defence hitherto bearers of the main burden, begins to go back. With Wainwright bottled up, there is nobody else who can find the back of the net. Yet Everton in some games this season have served up really attractive approach work.
EVERTON AT WREXHAM
October 4, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
There should be a big crowd at Wrexham Racecourse tomorrow evening (5.30) when Everton are sending over a side to play in a benefit match for Eddie Tunney and Gilbert Bellis two grand servants of the Welsh club, who have deserved well of Racecourse followers. The Wrexham team will be; Ferguson; Tunney, Jackson; Speed, Spruce, Bellis; Grainger, Beynon, Boothway, Rowell, Tuncliffe.
EVERTON TEAM V WREXHAM
October 5, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
A Benefit Match
By Leslie Edwards.
Eddie Tunney and Gilbert Bellis who have both had ten years service with Wrexham will appear in a match for their benefit against an Everton team at the Racecourse tonight (5-30). Tunney plays regularly for the reserves and Bellis is now player manager at Colwyn Bay. Interest in the Wrexham team will be focused on the return of Spruce to his old position at centre half and the reappearance of Beynon who has been absent from the senior team this season owing to injury. Wrexham; Ferguson; Tunney, Jackson; Speed, Spruce, Bellis; Grainger, Beynon, Boothway, Rowell, Tuncliffe. Everton; Burnett; Moore, Clinton; Bentham, Humphreys, Lindley; D. Gibson, Fielding, Catterick, Hampson, Eglington.
INJURIES IN BENEFIT GAME
October 6, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
Wrexham 4, Everton 1
The benefit at Wrexham last night for Tunney and Bellis provided a good game between a depleted Wrexham X1 and an Everton Central League team. Strangely although there was nothing at stake and the spirit at the game was excellent, Wrexham suffered two causalities. Near half time Grainger left the field with an ankle injury which may keep him out of the team for the “derby” at Chester on Saturday. Pritchard came on as substitute but 10 minutes from the end Bellis had to leave with a cut over the eye. There was never any doubt about Wrexham’s mastery. After Ferguson had let a shot from Gibson to slip through his hands to give Everton the lead after three minutes. Wrexham scored twice in each half through Grainger, Wynn, Rowell and Beynon. Features of Everton’s play were the goalkeeping of Burnett; the dour defensive work of Moore and the neat maneuvering of Hampson. Spruce at centre half in the Wrexham team showed an aptitude for the position for which many claim he is best fitted and full back Wynn playing at centre forward often had the better of Falder in heading duels. The attendance was 6,848 and the receipts approximately £500.
BLUES AT HIGHBURY
October 7, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Although Everton’s away record to date is much better than last season’s at this stage, there is room for still more improvement. Their draw at Villa Park was a good performance, but they will have to be right on the top line to get a similar half share against Arsenal at Highbury. Arsenal started off in a manner which quickly aroused speculation as to what was wrong with the Gunners. Four defeats in the first five games was a bit of a shock to their followers. Since they lost to Liverpool early last month, however, the Highbury lads have pulled their socks up in no uncertain fashion. They have taken 10 points from their last six figures, four of which have been away and the changes made in attack are now beginning o bear fruit. Goring their young new centre forward is filling the position formerly held by Ronne Rooke in promising fashion with seven goals to his credit, and with the Gunners defence not having got over its earlier shakiness, Arsenal are beginning to look more like the side we know they can be. Though Everton’s forwards will find it hard to find a way through the Arsenal defence to get at close grips with the home custodian it is essential that they should shoot at every opportunity and not fritter away their chances as they did against Charlton. Attack is still the best form of defence, no matter how much emphasis is put by so many sides on the necessity to stop fellows getting a goal. The Blues have had to make two enforced changes, the first because Farrell has been released to assist Eire against Finland in the World Cup game at Helsinki on Sunday and the other due to Tommy Jones not being fit. He is suffering from a torn ribs cartilage, not fibrotis as original thought. Grant and Humphreys deputise. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Dugdale; Grant, Humphreys, Lello; Corr, Wainwright, Higgins, Powell, McIntosh. Arsenal; Platt; Barnes, Smith; Macauley, Compton, Mercer; Cox, Lewis, Goring, Logie, Roper.
ARESNAL’S WINNING WAY IS TOO MUCH FOR EVERTON
October 8, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Arsenal 5, Everton 2.
Arsenal were too good for Everton at Highbury. They built up a sound lead of five goals, but then made the mistake of easing off. Everton during that spell registered two goals. Arsenal; Platt, goal; Barnes and Smith, backs; Macauley, Compton (L.), and Mercer (captain), half-backs; Cox, Logie, Gorring, Lewis and Roper, forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders (captain), and Dugdale, backs; Grant, Humphreys and Lello, half-backs; Corr, Wainwright, Higgins, Powell and McIntosh, forwards. Referee; Mr. J.W. Topliss (Grimsby). Arsenal have gone all one way since they were beaten by Liverpool having collected ten points out of a possible twelve. It was, however, a big task which faced Everton on this sunny day at Highbury. Everton had to make two changes owing to Farrell being on international duty in Finland, and an injury to Tom Jones. Their places were taken by Grant and Humphreys respectively. Eric Moore, the full back from Haydock C and B, was twelfth man for the first time since joining Everton. Manager Cliff Britton, although with the party was not present at the match. He has evidently had a watching brief elsewhere. Last season Everton were beaten here 5-0. The few Everton supporters – I saw some blue and white rosette –were hoping that it was not going to be a repeat performance. Joe Mercer beat George Saunders, Everton’s captain for the day, for the choice of ends and naturally set Everton to face a strong sun. Everton immediately probed the Arsenal’s defensive lines by good football tactics and Platt had to come out to catch a Corr centre which was heading straight for Higgins’s forehead. It was some moments before Arsenal broke the Everton attack after Wainwright had put narrowly behind.
Pounce by Sagar
At last Lewis, by a canny pass to his left flank, saw Roper crack in a low shot on which Sagar pounced to save. Then, after Corr had made a good run the Arsenal went off to open the day’s scoring. It was Macauley who receiving a back pass from Logie, lobbed the ball close in to the Everton goal. It was temporarily cleared, but eventually the ball came out to Roper, who scored an acute angle- time seen minutes. Lewis and Goring were combining splendidly, and with others finding the open spaces the Arsenal looked distinctly dangerous, but it was Everton who were concerned in the next goal incident. McIntosh racing well out on the left swept the ball over to Higgins, who made a good head as the whistle sounded “off-side.” Then came a second blow to Everton when Arsenal won a corner. Roper dropped his flag kick close in to the Everton goal and Lewis coolly headed the ball into the Everton net at 14 minutes. Corr was having a happy time over on the far side of the field, making scintillating runs and passes and sending one shot high over the bar, but there was no doubt that the Arsenal were calling the tune. Goring after promising to lose the ball, regained possession and directed it right across the Everton goal line. Saunders kicked off the line to prevent goal number three. Corr after beating Smith, pushed the ball along the goal line and it seemed to me that he should have had a corner when Compton and Platt suffered a slight misunderstanding, but the referee said “No.”
Goring greatly impressed me, but he had to thank those around him for their support. Logie and Lewis looked after him well. At 28 minutes the bounce from the ball enabled Goring, with only Humphreys to beat, to slip neatly beyond the Everton centre half. He just got his boot to the ball to put it wide of Sagar, s right hand. Some of Everton’s movements were good enough to carry them into the Arsenal penalty area, but apart from a blocked out shot by Corr, Platt had nothing much to worry about.
Arsenal by control were full of shots, and a Logie pass to Goring looked a winner until the Arsenal leader was successful challenged by Dugdale. It was heavily going for the Everton defence, which had to put up with another corner when a terrific shot by Lewis was deflected. Higgins had a thankless task against Compton, especially with the ball so much in the air. Goring was a forcing type of leader who chased everything so that the Everton defence had to be constantly on the watch. Mercer was effective with those canny little passes which turned defence into attack. It had been mostly Arsenal this half as the score denotes, but at times Everton were full of promise –not fulfilled.
Half-time; Arsenal 3, Everton nil.
Arsenal set out in this second half quest as though they intended to add to their goal tally, but for a few minutes they played fancy football and Everton had a spell of attack. But Arsenal learned their lesson, and when Goring beat Humphries on the left the winger slipped the ball back to Roper, who shot fiercely. Sagar had to pull out his best to turn the ball over.
Another For Goring
A little later Lewis had a header turned aside for a corner, but the goal was not long delayed. Logie made a perfect opening for Goring, who without hesitation shot beyond Sagar for goal number four. Time, 51 minutes. Put for a one-hand sweep by Sagar a fifth goal would have had to be recorded. Humphreys nipped in to stop Roper, but it was tough going for the Everton defence.
Sagar Saves Again
Sagar was the savior of his side again when Goring headed for the net. Sagar, timing his dive to the second, cleverly turned the ball out. Roper can’t half hit em! He took a pass from Mercer in his stride and the ball went whizzing over the bar like a rocket. Platt had only one thing to do so far this half, and was not impressive in the way he did it. I had hardly written that when Wainwright got in one of his specials and Platt had to act swiftly to save.
From another Everton corner Platt caught Corr’s centre, lost the ball and had to rely on a colleague to complete the save. Last year’s score was reached at the 67th minute when Macauley put across a centre straight to Lewis’s head and the ball went speeding into goal wide of Sagar’s left hand. The Arsenal were a very confident side and also a very capable one. Each time they came down the field they had the goal look about them. Their passing at this stage was copy-book, but when Everton did breakaway Wainwright gave Platt a warm handful and he only saved at the second attempt. This attack was a forerunner to others by Everton, and Wainwright and Higgins got together to engineer a goal at 76 minutes. Platt had no chance with Higgins oblique drive, Higgins by the way had been operating at outside left for some time and for a few minutes the Arsenal defence had its hardest work. Roper had another fast drive which passed over and Lewis, with a glorious opening shot outside. This was in my opinion a bad miss.
Everton were doing well at this point, but the minutes were ticking off fast and with such a commanding lead Arsenal were inclined to take things easy. This was a mistaken policy. It proved costly for Corr and Powell slipped the Arsenal defence and McIntosh beat Platt with ease from short range. Time 84 minutes. This made the result look better for Everton but nevertheless Sagar made a super save from Lewis. Everton were attacking strongly in the last few minutes and Compton kicked off the line from Powell and Platt stopped a goal when McIntosh shot was deflected over the bar. Final; Arsenal 5, Everton 2. Attendance 55,000.
ARSENAL V EVERTON
October 8, 1949. The Evening Express
Everton were at Highbury today to tackle Arsenal, who had taken ten points from a possible 12 in their last six games since they went down at home to Liverpool, without international Tommy Jones and Peter Farrell. Humphreys deputized for Jones and Jackie Grant made his first senior appearance in place of Farrell, who was on international duty in Finland. Travelling with the seniors as twelfth man for the first time was young Everton full back Eric Moore a product of the Haydock C and B Club. Manager Cliff Britton made the journey to London with the team, but did not watch the game. No doubt he was “on other business. “ Members of the Football League Management Committee gathered at Everton’s hotel headquarters this morning preparatory to their meeting tonight to select the England team to meet Wales next Saturday. I gathered that the majority of them are in favour of giving the team which lost to Eire another chance, so there are likely to be few, if any, changes. Arsenal, who beat Everton 5-0 in the corresponding game last season were unchanged. Arsenal; Platt, goal; Barnes and Smith, backs; Macauley, Compton (L.), and Mercer (captain), half-backs; Cox, Logie, Gorring, Lewis and Roper, forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders (captain), and Dugdale, backs; Grant, Humphreys and Lello, half-backs; Corr, Wainwright, Higgins, Powell and McIntosh, forwards. Referee; Mr. J.W. Topliss (Grimsby). George Saunders captaining Everton for the first time, lost the toss and Mercer, set the Blues to face a dazzling sun. Everton swept straight to the attack and Powell took over from McIntosh to slip the ball to Corr. The Irishman’s shot was intercepted by Smith, but Everton came and Platt had all his work cut out to deal with Corr’s perfectly-placed drop as he was challenged by Higgins.
EVERTON ARE SLIPPING
October 8, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
Ranger’s Weekly Commentary
Red Light Again?
Goodison, matters are not looking too promising. After an encouraging start the Blues have faded out lately with only two points out of the last ten played for. They are getting a bit too near the danger zone for comfort. Manager Cliff Britton has been out and about scouting a lot lately, but so far, though a man of his experience obviously knows well enough where the sides need strengthening. Everton have not signed the new blood which their supporters have been hoping to see. Everton have been unfortunate to lose full points in their last two home games through defensive errors. Those mishaps happen to the best of sides. It is not that so much that is causing perturbation among supporters, though they realize the danger if the defence, hitherto so sound, begins to develop uncertainty and “nerves.” Everton’s biggest need, and has been for a long time, as I have so often pointed out, is more virility and punch in the front line. All the good approach work in the world means nothing if there are no goals at the end of it, and the Blues have been getting them.
All Honest Triers
One cannot fault the present players on the score of honest endeavour. They are all hard triers, but something more than that is needed. Recent switches should be given a fair trial, though I am not greatly enamoured of changes which in some cases only mean extended trials for players who have already been proved not to be up to regular senior standard. Unfortunately it is easier to suggest buying players than it is to get them. No club today unless forced by circumstances, is going to sell a tip-top player of the type which Everton need. The present state of the transfer market makes a sort of vicious circle which condemns clubs in need to new men to keep on swopping about the old ones in the hope of striking a better combination. Yet transfers are affected from time to time, and some of the men who have moved since the end of last season, or even during the course of the current campaign are giving their new clubs most helpful service. Everton’s traditions are among the best in the land. But no side can live on past reputation. While realizing to the full the difficulties of the situation, and giving all credit to the side for the attractive play served up in some of this season’s games, the fact remains that if the club is to attain the peak which its followers hope, some strengthening moves are vitally necessary.
GUNNERS REPORTED “ON TARGET”
October 10, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
Arsenal 5, Everton 2
This was the old Arsenal, better in fact, for they were not slaves to defence as they were at one time, when a snatched goal was sufficient to give them the lead and then the rest was left to defence. I have been complaining about the poor quality of present day football, the lack of the science of the game but after seeing Arsenal against Everton I must confess we still have craftsmen in the game. Arsenal made football look easy. And do not let the fact that Everton scored twice mislead for these came only after Arsenal had run up five and had become fanciful in their methods. Arsenal could be likened to a ballet dancer with Everton in clogs. Everything the winners did was rhythmic and smooth. Had they gained an even bigger score it would not have been flattering; they were complete masters with heaps of time in which to do things. Everton had their happiest moments in the first and last few minutes.
Once Arsenal got on the track goals became a natural order of things. That they did not score more than five is due mostly to three magnificent saves by Sagar. The Everton defence had no answer to the problem set them. They battled bravely, but it was soon obvious that they had met their master. Lewis got two goals, Goring two and Roper the other, and there were other shots of equal of those that scored. Goals by Higgins (who changed places with McIntosh) and McIntosh made Everton’s defeat look more respectable but it does not save them from criticism. They were poor. It is the old story of no punch in the attack and the defence having to shoulder the burden and finding it was heavily. Things are becoming desperate and as usual with a side that is on hard times, nothing would go right. Shortly before the end Dugdale received a nasty blow to the nose and it is feared that it is broken. Here are the goals and the times; Roper (7 minutes), Lewis (14), Goring (28 and 51), Lewis (76), Higgins (76), McIntosh (84).
HELSINKI GOAL FOR FARRELL
October 10, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
Helsinki Sunday; The world championship football match between Finland and Ireland today ended in 1-1 draw. There was no score in the first half. Ireland scored in the twenty-eighth minute of the second period, (P. Farrell of Everton getting the goal from short range). Finland’s outside right Valheia equalized one minute before full time. The first half was uneventful. The Finns pressed hard from the beginning but slackened pace towards the end of the half. The initiative was taken over by the Irish who made many threatening attacks. The Irish team was technically superior and had greater speed. Inside left P. Desmond was the star. Ireland qualified to play Sweden in the next round.
In the first leg, Sweden won 3-1 and the second leg match will be played in Dublin. Today’s match was played with the temperature only four degrees above zero before 13,000 spectators.
A NEW ARSENAL
October 10, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Not so long ago everyone was decrying Arsenal for their negative football, and I was of that number. I could see little good in their modus operandi of snatching a goal and them packing their goal against all comers. I say without fear of contradiction it was ruining this grand game of ours, for others tried to follow suit (writes Stork). Well, a new Arsenal appears to have been born if their Saturday game is any criterion. Their close-packed defence was still there, but there was a thirst for goals, not just one, but as many as they can get until they were satisfied they have enough to assure them of victory, and the consequence is that they are a more attractive side. They were a first-class attraction against Everton, for their football struck the highest note in artistry and effectiveness and Everton left the full might of their hitting power and conceded five goals. I think it could have been more had the Arsenal kept their mind on the scoring of goals, and not yielded to the temptation to “play to the gallery.” Certainly it was nice to watch; at least that was my opinion, for I have seen so little good football for a season or so, but it was a costly business and reduced their goal average, for it was only when they became flippant and not forthright that Everton were able to hit their defence for two goals, which never looked possible while the Arsenal were on their goal-seeking mission. Maybe some of them disliked the idea of rubbing it in, I wouldn’t know. Their fast moving, powerful attack was too much for the Everton defence, which was not faultless because it could not handle the situation the Arsenal placed them in. Cox, Logie, Goring, Lewis and Roper, assisted by wing halves who kept up a supply of passes all responded with a will, and eventually the Everton defence was crushed and bruised. Everton started off well with promise, but two goals against in 14 minutes took the spirit out of them and not until the last ten minutes did we see them in an attacking sense. Arsenal did everything right as a team holding a lead can do. Everton with no confidence did nothing right as is the usual procedure with a team with its back to the wall, and the Londoners pulled out every trick, every known pass, every type of shot and header to score three further goals and no one thought that Everton would get a chance to hit back. They had a grueling against a side that was a complete whole, and one which looked good for goals each and every time it advanced and it was then that Sagar pulled advanced and it was then that Sagar pulled off three magnificent saves. It was then that the Arsenal “pulled their punched,” became fanciful and lost their “bite” Everton came back into the game with great courage, scored two goals via Higgins (outside left) and McIntosh (centre forward) and Platt had to save from Powell, Everton’s best forward, and Wainwright. The Arsenal defence, which had been so secure, became slack, but one had always to remember that they still held a commanding lead, but such tactics can be dangerous. I am not one to believe in rubbing it into a beaten foe, but to hand over the initiative as Arsenal did was bad policy. Few clubs could leave such men as Lishman and Denis Compton out of their first team – they were in the reserve side – but on this showing they were not missed. I like the young centre forward Goring. He has the physique a lot of ability and a strong shot, but I liked Lewis and Roper as well as any, for Logie is inclined to overdo things. Macauley was the cool methodical wing half, and Mercer is far from a spent force. What can I say of Everton? Very little that is heartening, unless it is that they never gave up trying, as witness their late on rally, when they could easily have given up the ghost. Gordon Dugdale received a nasty cut on the nose, but he played on.
NOT SO ROSY
October 10, 1949. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Crossing the park to Goodison does not bring quite such a rosy club picture, for Everton went down 5-2 at Arsenal for their fifth defeat of a season which began so happily, but in which the clubs has struck another of these periods when everything goes wrong at once. For instance, at Highbury, it was the luck of the Blues to meet the real Arsenal. As colleague Radar writes;-
“Everton came up against a high-powered Arsenal force much improved from that which I saw Liverpool defeat last month. For five minutes at the start Everton’s forwards played delightful football, so that the prospects looked really bright. Then the Gunners got in work, Mercer and Macauley taking control and the front line responding brilliantly. Result –Everton found themselves two goals behind inside 13 minutes, although at that stage they were not two goals inferior. Once Arsenal got their teeth into it, however, they played havoc with the Blues’ defence, bringing fast-moving wingers into the game with long, accurate passes over the heads of Saunders and Dugdale, while Goring always was a menace to Humphreys. “Every time Arsenal sprang to attack they threatened to score goals, and that was the main difference between the sides, for one rarely expected goals from the Everton raids, at least, not until Arsenal decided to rest on their laurels. Everton lacked the danger look because the final pass too often went astray, and because slightly-built Higgins was presented with a hopeless task in trying to elude big Leslie Compton. More often than not the ball was sent to Higgins in the air, giving him no chance, and I was surprised that the decision to switch Higgins and McIntosh was not made earlier. I did not blame Sagar for any of the goals scored by Goring (2), Lewis (2), and Roper, while he saved at least three certain goals, it was an unfortunate baptism for George Saunders as captain, for he worked valiantly to rally his forces, while Dugdale carried on heroically despite three knocks on the nose. I thought Lello, Grant and the backs were too-easily drawn out of position. Of the forwards Powell was easily the best, for Wainwright seems to have lost much of his fire, and Corr was inclined to do the obvious. McIntosh used the ball well and with Higgins got the goals. I rated Lewis, the Arsenal forward in whom Everton were not interested, as the best forward on the field.”
• Everton Reserves draw 0-0 with Burnley
TOMMY JONES TRAINING AT GOODISON TODAY
October 10, 1949. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Tommy Jones, the Everton centre half and captain, who was unable to play against Arsenal on Saturday because of injury was training at Goodison Park today. Tommy is getting ready to play for Wales against England at Ninian Park on Saturday.
Peter Farrell, the Everton half-back who scored the goal by which Eire drew 1-1 with Finland in the World Cup at the week-end is due to arrive back in England tomorrow.
October 14, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
No Room For Complacency
Blues’ Recent Decline is Disturbing
Everton make another experiment in their attack against Bolton Wanderers, at Goodison Park tomorrow by bringing in Eddie Wainwright at centre forward. Higgins is unfit. Fielding returns, though this time at inside right and Eglington is recalled at outside left in place of McIntosh, who is in the reserve team at inside left. This is not Wainwright’s first experience as leader of the forwards. He occupied the position twice a couple of seasons ago. The only other change in the side is Humphreys for Jones, who is playing for Wales, plus of course, the return of Farrell, away in Finland last week. Everton’s league position is becoming such that anxiety about the future is again beginning to be felt by Goodison supporters. Only two points from the last 12 played for is a meagre return. The Blues are sinking too fast for complacency. Bolton have never done very well at Goodison, having won there only five times in 42 years. But past history is little guide today, and the Wanderers who are no better off for points than Everton, though they hold a higher place in the table by virtue of goal average, can be counted on to fight hard for victory. Everton have not got a point at home since they defeated Huddersfield on September 3. Victory is overdue, but it will not come unless there is greater finishing power in the Blues front line than in recent home matches. Against both Wolves and Charlton they had enough chances to make the issue safe. There was not only a sad lack of shooting, but too little accuracy about many of the shots which were attempted. It was unfortunate that both these games should have been lost by defensive errors, and one hopes that the memory of those, together with the reverse at Portsmouth and Arsenal, will not affect reliability of the rearguard in future. Defence saved the Blues last season, but too much reliance can be placed on it. The strain may tell if defenders do not get a reasonable release from their labours through the efficacy and improvement of the attack. It is to be hoped that the new “line-out” will do the trick. Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Dugdale; Farrell, Humphreys, Lello; Corr, Fielding, Wainwright, Powell, Eglington. Bolton; Hanson; Banks (R.), Kinsell; Howe, Gillies, Murphy; Hughes, Moir, Lofthouse, Hernon, McShane.
Everton Reserves (v. Preston away);- O’Neill; Clinton, Rankin; Lindley, Falder, Grant; Hampson, Bentham, Catterick, McIntosh, Parker.
• Everton “A” Haydock C &B, Second Geo Mahon Cup, at Bellefield
• Everton “D” v Roby Youth at Bellefield
BOLTON WANDERERS AT GOODISON
October 14, 1949. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
The Blues receive Bolton Wanderers at Goodison Park, Bolton will not be affected by international calls. Everton supply their captain Tommy Jones, to Wales. From the point of view of both Everton and Bolton, their duel at Goodison transcends in importance any representative match, for they are lowly placed and can ill afford to be without any star player. Everton have been playing football of an attacking value worth more than the lone point they have gained from their last five games. It has been shakiness in defence and inspired opponents which have contributed to failures, but I am hopeful that the Blues can regain their winning ways tomorrow against a good clean sporting football combination, who, like Everton, consider the manner of winning even greater than the victory itself. The Wanderers come seeking their first away win of the season, and their success seems to depend mainly on whether they can overcome the Everton half-backs, Farrell and Lello will find the Bolton inside-forwards elusive and cunning, with Bradley a roving genius and Moir a great opportunist. I do not regard Bolton as quiet so effective in defence as in attack, although Stan Hanson, from the Bootle footballing family, stands out as one of the finest goalkeepers of the say. It should be a tense keen struggle in which the Wanderers will have Banks (R.) at full-back, Hughes at outside-right ad Hernon, the former Leicester City player at inside-left. Lofthouse is having a test today. Bolton; Hanson; Banks (R.), Kinsell; Howe, Gillies, Murphy; Hughes, Moir, Lofthouse, Hernon, McShane.
EVERTON V BOLTON
October 15, 1949. The Evening Express
Eddie Wainwright, who in three seasons had made ten appearances at centre-forward for nine goals including a hat-trick against Sunderland took over the leadership of the attack again today when Everton opposed Bolton Wanderers at Goodison Park. Fielding and Eglington returned to first team duty after runs with the Reserves, while Peter Farrell who as in Finland last week, resumed at right half against a Bolton seeking their first away win of the season. Several thousands Bolton supporters made the short journey by coach and rail. With Tommy Jones absent on international duty Farrell captained Everton. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Farrell (captain), Humphreys, and Lello, half-backs; Corr, Fielding, Wainwright, Powell, and Eglington, forwards. Bolton Wanderers;- Hanson, goal; Banks (R.) and Kinsell, backs; Howe (captain), Gllies, and Murphy, half-backs; Hughes, Moir, Lofthouse, Hernon, and McShame, forwards. Referee; Mr. G. Black (Kendall). The sun shone through the clouds just as the two No 4’s tossed up and Howe, winning set Everton to face it. Hanson had to employ a hand to hold up Corr and the free kick had to be taken twice, as Powell needed attention for a blow on the face a few seconds earlier. Receiving from Eglington, Wainwright tried to put Powell through, but Gillies managed to get the ball away. It went to Eglington, who did the right thing in shooting first time, the ball flashing across the face of the goal. Wainwright went to outside right to pick up Corr’s pass being agreeably surprised that he was not given offside but rather disappointed when he found Banks taking charge of the centre. Wainwright ran again to outside right as if to take Corr’s pass, but Corr deceived the Wanderers by lobbing the ball into the goalmouth and Eglington, thinking and acting quicker than anyone, was there to pick it up.
Eglington could only use his right foot for the job as he was travelling at such pace and in trying to hook it into the net he hooked it over the top. The Wanderers had a close up free-kick on the right which placed the Everton goal in jeopardy because Sagar, although he came out to catch the ball, failed to get hold of it, and it took desperate Everton bodies to charge down hasty Wanderers shots made while Sagar was still out of goal. The barrier proved strong enough until Lofthouse rather hurriedly placed over the top. Hanson, once again playing before his townies crashed into the limelight, just as he had done at Anfield, when Eglington went through avidly to Howell’s pass and let got a shot cum-centre which Hanson flung himself outwards to beat away for a corner.
GOODISON GOAL FAMINE CONTINUES TO-DAY
October 15, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Chances Missed by Both Sets of Forwards
A moderate sort of game, with shooting at a premium. The Wanderers approach work was at times good, but a punishing forward was required by both sides.
Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Farrell (captain), Humphreys, and Lello, half-backs; Corr, Fielding, Wainwright, Powell, and Eglington, forwards. Bolton Wanderers;- Hanson, goal; Banks (R.) and Kinsell, backs; Howe (captain), Gllies, and Murphy, half-backs; Hughes, Moir, Lofthouse, Hernon, and McShame, forwards. Referee; Mr. G. Black (Kendall). Everton were in search of important home points at Goodison Park today, and for the occasion they made several forward changes. Fielding returned and so did Eglington, while Wainwright took over the centre forward position, not for the first time during his career at Goodison Park. Right from the kick-off Powell opened the way with one of those long, sweeping passes of his which have now become a feature of his play, and although Corr collected the ball he did not get far with it, for he was dispossessed by Hernon, who with a neat movement defeated the opposition, only to put his final pass to an Everton man. Everton were awarded a free kick, but before that was taken Powell had to receive attention for a blow on the face.
Once again the ball went to a Boltonian. Everton should undoubtedly have taken the lead at the seventh minute when Corr provided the opening for what should have been an assured goal. Eglington moved well into position, and it seemed that Hanson, good goalkeeper through he is, would have to go to the back of the net, but to the dismay of all Eglington got under the ball and scooped it over the bar. I don’t think he could have been more than six yards out of goal at the time.
Way Was Barred
Fielding and Powell were linking up in providing openings, but Wainwright found his way barred by Gillies and others when he tried to brush his way through to have a smack at Hanson. There was no doubt that at this point Everton were the better side, but there was still the need for an accurate shooter. The openings were made, but were not snapped up, at least not until Eglington came along and from an awkward angle, shot fiercely at the Bolton goal, and Hanson had to make one of his best saves to turn the ball out. Hereabouts the Wanderers ran into a spot of form which was full of promise, but fortunately for Everton was not fulfilled. The pressure continued in front of the Everton goal for a minute or two, but relief came when Corr, having gone back, picked up the ball, and as he made a pass right along the line, Kinsell handled. Farrell took the free kick and out it close in to goal, but Hanson got those safe hands of his to work. The Everton attack was quiet for a moment or two, what time the Wanderers’ forwards by some fast inter-passing, got to grips with the Everton defence, without, however, calling on Sagar.
Then came the first big thrill of the game so far, and then Everton goal was mighty lucky not to have fallen, for Sagar was well and truly beaten by a shot from McShame which crashed against the crossbar and rebound into play. Howe, following up ran on to a ball, and hit it with all his might. It looked a goal all over, but Sagar, by one of those leaps for which he is famous, turned the ball over the bar. A really good shot and a magnificent save. There were certainly plenty of life in the game, and Eglington again led the forwards into a position of challenge and Hanson had to move smartly to take care of header by Powell. Sagar was again in the picture when he made another good save from Lofthouse, and at this stage Bolton were displaying excellent approach work but were still inclined to pass on the scoring buck to someone else.
I had been led to believe that the Wanderers were a poor side. They were not quite that to-day, although it was some time before they had belief in themselves. Lofthouse made a back-header of merit, ran through he was off target. Eglington was the spearhead of the majority of the Everton attacks, and again he was the provider of a centre which, however, was non-productive. McShame, like Eglington was the driving force of his forwards, and after he had disposed of Saunders he closed in to make a shot which slewed away from the goal instead of into it. Hernon made two superb passes to get his forwards off, but Farrell nipped in to negative the Boltonian’s good work. One of Everton’s most promising movements came to grief when the referee adjudged Corr offside, which he was certainly not. Four men had been instrumental for the Corr finale, so it was rank bad luck that the movement broke down in the way it did.
Wainwright was looking after Eglington, and the left winger swept the ball over to Corr, who twice seemed to lose it, regain it, and finally shot from close in, only to see Hanson turn the ball over his bar. The corner produced some heavy pressure for the Wanderers, and Kinsell was injured in defending his goal when only good defence could keep Everton out.
Half-time; Bolton 0, Bolton W. 0
Lofthouse opened the second half with two shots, the first a long-range affair which gave Sagar no trouble, the second one of shorter range, following a hot melee in the Everton penalty area. This time the Bolton leader was off the mark. Eglington was hurt, but soon recovered in time, in fact to see Powell take a corner kick, for which both Wainwright and Fielding went up. But neither made the right sort of contact.
Dugdale twice made knife-edge tackles to stop Hughes, and Hernon was responsible for a header which Sagar fumbled but was ultimately to recover and make his clearance. The Wanderers were certainly putting on the pressure, and for some minutes play was confined close to the Everton penalty line, and while they looked a menace Sagar was anything but a busy man. At this point the Everton passing became uncertain, and the Wanderers were enjoying a spate of attack which kept the Everton defence on its toes, and a corner saw Sagar make a sound catch of a ball that was travelling right across to the Wanderers left flank. So far this half Hanson’s task had been negligible. His one save was a long lob by Corr, which went straight into the hands. Lofthouse, out on the left wing again, tried to break the side netting with the ferocity of his shot, but the longed for goal refused to come, and this applied to both sides. McShame and Farrell in a race for the ball, but then undid it all by passing badly.
Hanson In Action
There was a lot that was not good in this game, yet at times the approach work could be said to be worthy of something better. Howe, for instance, once slewed the ball over for a corner, and Eglington saw Hanson made a save of not a difficult effort. Eglington just failed to link up with a long centre by Corr, and then Hanson showed his grip of things when he caught a shot from Powell under the bar and held it as though in a vice. Powell, Fielding and Corr were concerned in a movement which should have brought something tangible but the Irish winger allowed himself to be beaten by Kinsell and a moment later Wainwright was given a glorious opportunity of scoring, but he only half hit the shot, which Hanson pushed out. Everton were attacking persistently enough but all that Hanson had to do was take high balls, one of them from Fielding. Bolton had come back into the game and Lofthouse offered Moir a chance to become famous but the inside right got no form behind his shot and Sagar saved.
PRESTON NORTH END RESERVES V EVERTON RESERVES
October 15, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton Reserves were hard pressed at Deepdale, where Preston’s young forwards line attacked strongly. O’Neill was kept busy. Two shots which beat him were cleared by defenders. Higgins scored for Everton from a corner kick, just before half-time. Half-time; Preston N.E. Res nil, Everton Res 1. Little was seen of the Everton attack after the interval. Both goals survived indirect free kicks in the penalty area. A shot from E. Brown, which beat O’Neill, struck a defender and went over the bar.
McIntosh scored a second for Everton just before the end. Final; Preston N.E Res nil, Everton Res 2.
Everton “A” v. Haydock C & B
Both goals had narrow escapes in the first few minutes. Everton pressed, but Everall put over when well placed. Haydock applied pressure, and S. Maddison scored with a grand shot Roby scored the second. Half-time; Everton “A” nil, Haydock C and B 2.
October 17, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 0, Bolton Wanderers 0
The changed Everton forward line did not bring the required improvement. The old fault. Poor finishing was still there hence this result. Bolton were no better when they reached the goal-scoring point, which suggests that the defenders were in command. They were but no one will deny that the occasions were there for goals. Both teams should have had goals. They worked their way up to the target area by sound ideas, but then chance were cast to the wind. Very early in the game Eglington showed his reading of a movement by running on to a pass and then bewildering us all by scooping the ball high over from no more than six yards out. Then there was the Wainwright opportunity which in nine cases out of ten would have been accepted with alacrity. It was spoiled because he only half hit the drive. I could quote other cases not all of them debited to Everton. Moir should have scored late on and McShame tried to bring down the netting with the power of his shot when a little more steadiness would have been advisable. True, the outside left had one great drive rendered useless by the intervention of the crossbar. Sagar shortly after had to flick a fierce shot from Howe over the bar –a mastery save and the best incident of the match which never rose above the ordinary. There is a lot of spadework to be done both at Goodison and Burden Park. Everton looked good enough during the first fifteen minutes to put Bolton in their place but gradually Wanderers got together and with slightly better approaching ideas, kept the Everton defence right on its toes.
Neither goalkeeper had much to worry him, but Sagar for once in a way was guilty of mishandling. He fumbled more balls in this game than he did all last season. Strangely enough not from difficult shots. Wainwright tried every point of the compass to get away from the clutches of the fall. Wanderers centre half but got little chance of getting a position for a shot. He made Hanson move fast for one header, but frankly had little scope for those dashes between the backs which have produced most of his goals. It is strange how Everton run into a spell of mis-passing. They struck one here again. Corr was variable Fielding and Powell tried hard to get things moving but I must admit they got little from their endeavour. McShame was Bolton’s best attacker, but was inclined to take a shot from impossible angles when a ball “inside” would have been of greater value. In the main, however, the Wanderers forwards wanted to put the ball on a “tee” before they would make a shot and the Everton defence would not allow it.
WALES 1 ENGLAND 4
October 17, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
A grand hat-trick by Milburn, gave England a 4-1 victory at Cardiff’s Ninnian Park, Tommy Jones played for Wales.
HALF A LOAF
October 17, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
“Half a loaf is better than no bread,” is an old saying, but the hungry man would much prefer to see a well-filled plate to completely satisfy his appetite. Everton are hungry for points –they have not won a home game since September 3 –and according to all the laws of football a team is expected to win its home games no matter what happens on “foreign” grounds. So their failure to take two points from Bolton Wanderers who like themselves have struck a bad patch was anything but satisfying. It was just a case of two mediocre teams in opposition, yet it could have been a day of nigh scoring had the forwards taken their chances. There were enough of them, but neither had a marksman quick or stern enough to accept them. In approach work each side had its moments but having worked out a scoring position it failed at the crucial moment. Everton should have drawn first blood in the early moments of the game when Eglington dashed in and no one would have given two pence for Hanson’s chance of saving. He was not even called upon to make a save for Eglington the ball over the bar. A goal then might have turned the game inside out so far as Everton were concerned for they were probing the Wanderers defence severely (writes Stork). The big thrill of the game which often lacked sparkle was when McShane shook the crossbar with a tremendous drive, quickly followed by a high-powered shot by Howe which Sagar flung his hand to and turned over the bar –a wonderful save. That was Everton’s luckiest moment. Hanson had no such save to make, for his best was when he turned aside a cross shot by Eglington a header by Wainwright and a close in attempt by Corr, but in the main the defences were quite capable of handling forwards who wanted to cuddle and cajole the ball before striking their blow. Defenders love that type of football, for it plays right into their hands; enables them to make the tackle and so cut right into the workings of the opposition. The unexpected shot is the one most value, and there were few of this sort. The Wanderers were a shade faster in the approach work, but they tumbled down with their promise unfulfilled. Wainwright had a difficult task against the strong Gillies. He moved about in an endeavour to shake him off, but he got few chances. One he did get he only half hit his shot, which gave Hanson the opportunity to save. But there were so many missed chances that I cannot tell you about them all, but Moir should have scored late on. Bolton would be well satisfied with their half share –their sixth draw to date –but until scoring forwards are found goals are going to be scarce at Goodison and Burnden Park. Powell and Fielding opened well, but the best Everton forward up to the interval was undoubtedly Eglington, whose speed and delivery of the ball into the goalmouth was first class, but I wish he had scored that goal; it might have made the game more interesting. Corr was in and out. To the defence go the medals, for they prevented goals, and that was their mission. But even they had their moments of anxiety and uncertainty. I have not seen Sagar fumble so many shots in any one game, but I don’t forget that one save from Howe which undoubtedly saved a point. Jack Hedley expects to start playing this week-end. He will probably have a run out in the “A” team to get the feel of things. He say his leg is perfectly sound again and he is itching to go.
October 17, 1949. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
All the daintiness was there to please the Goodison onlookers, but it was “fire” that was needed. Too often Everton waited for the ball to come to them instead of going to it in the Bolton manner. The affected attack and defence alike. At times the Blues were inclined to be “gingerly” in the close tackling and so the advantage was with the Wanderers I appreciate that there were many disappointing features but there was still plenty about Everton over which we could feel satisfied. I refer, in particular to the grand “come-back” of Tommy Eglington, who had a really splendid if luckless first half. I heard people blaming Tommy for not scoring early on from the surprise Corr centre, but this was no real miss. I have critcised Tommy when I have thought it justified but in this instance Eglington earned praise and not condemnation. As a matter of fact, Eglington was the only player not surprised by the centre and he thought and acied so quickly, that he was out on his own when the ball dropped a wee bit too high for an accurate shot and a little bit too low for a header. Going at top pace Eglington tried to hook the ball and it went over. And in precisely the same circumstances another time it might as easily go in. Powell faded out in the second half and with Wainwright held by Gillies, and Fielding and Corr failing to link-up accurately, once Eglington was mastered most of the promise went out of the Everton attack which again had the grace but no penetration. Humphreys may not have been attractive but by goodness he was practical and through, while Lello was able to match Bolton in strength on the ball. Farrell covered perhaps a little too much ground, but was highly potent in attack and Saunders and Dugdale were grand in their tackling while finding it difficult to dispose of the ball. Five saves from Hughes and Moir earned Ted Sagar full “pardon” for two tumbled saves which were so totally unlike Sagar. Everton’s tactical mistake was that with such a small attack they ballooned the ball far too much in a game bringing a just result, but only little to send the spectators home happy. Much of the second half was boring, but locally-born Stan Hanson in the Bolton goal again showed that he likes his native sir, and by taking charge of centres saved the Wanderers and himself a lot of bother.
EVERTON’S INJURY LIST
October 17, 1949. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
There was activity at Goodison Park, yesterday, where the staff began the work of getting fit players injured during the week-end. Injuries have struck further blows at Everton’s campaign of recovery. Powell was at the Park having treatment for a thigh injury, while Higgins who because Rankin went down with influenza had to play for the Reserves at Preston also was having attention, Jim McIntosh who, like Higgins got a goal at Preston. Harry Catterick and “Nobby” Fielding, are also carrying injuries and the blows Fielding receiving on his head, and thigh against Bolton at Goodison undoubtedly affected his play.
TOMORROW AT GOODISON
October 18, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Everton Field Strong Side Against South In Lancs. Senior Cup
Everton are fielding a strong side, including no fewer than five first team players, for their first-round Lancashire Senior Cup-Tie against Southport, at Goodison Park tomorrow (3.15). They are also making an experiment, similar to that of Eire, by playing Peter Farrell at inside right with Lewis leading the attack. During the war the Lancashire Senior Cup provided some good fare for Saturday patrons. In post-war years, with the competition again relegated to mid-week the majority of senior clubs have been fielding their second strings, but Manager Cliff Britton is evidently seizing this opportunity of giving his reserve teamer’s a chance of gaining actual match experience alongside senior players. Southport have a tough job on hand. Everton; Burnett; Moore, Dugdale; Lindley, Jones (T.G.), Grant; Higgins, Farrell, Lewis, Powell, Eglington.
Everton have advised the Welsh F.A. that they are willing to release both Jones and Powell if required by Wales for the mid-week game against Scotland at Hampden Park, on November 9.
SOUTHPORT LEAD EVERTON
October 19, 1949. The Evening Express
Southport included two former Everton players, Wyles and Birkett, against the Blues at Goodison Park today, in the Lancashire Cup first round-tie for the right to meet Manchester United in the second round, Everton included four internationals. Everton; Burnett, goal; Moore and Dugdale, backs; Lindley, Jones (captain) and Grant, half-backs; Higgins, Farrell, Lewis, Powell (A.), and Eglington, forwards. Southport; Birkett, goal; Bradshaw, and Hardy, backs; Hitchen, Bellas, and Hacking, half-backs; Rothwell, Ball, Walsh, Wyles, and Powell (K.), forwards. Referee; Mr. F. Thurman (Preston). Southport did the bulk of the early pressure without being able to outwit the Everton defence, and there was no shot forthcoming to give Burnett any trouble. Southport failed to profit from a close up free kick for a foul on Wyles. Play was not exhilarating but Southport showed more enterprise under the leadership of Walsh, who is on trial from Scotland and played with Celtic, but Wyles the engineer of most of the dangerous raids. Goalkeepers were generally spectators, but Everton should have taken the lead in 20 minutes when, after good work by Eglington. Lewis slipped the ball across goal and the in-running Farrell failed to connect when only a tap was needed. Southport and by no means undeservedly took the lead in 35 minutes through Hitshen. Jones had checked shots by Walsh and Powell (K.) and the ball dropped back invitingly to Hitchen, who shot over a group of players into the roof of the net. Moore saved a certain goal when he kicked away a shot by Ball after a faulty clearance by Jones.
Half-time; Everton 0, Southport 1.
CONVINCING VICTORY FOR SOUTHPORT
October 20, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 1, Southport 3
With five first team men in their side, Everton were soundly beaten by Southport at Goodison Park, yesterday, in the first round of the Lancashire Senior Cup. Southport now met Manchester United (writes Ranger) for in the closing minutes a long shot by Powell (k.) crossed the Everton goal line, but was kicked out by Burnett after rebounding from the netting. To the amazement of the crowd, the referee waved play on. Southport established a three-goal lead inside an hour. Then Everton fought back with determination. They reduced the lead at the 68 minute, when Southport had only ten men Bellas receiving attention for a cut eye. He later returned. During Everton’s ascendency Aubrey Powell hit the bar and Lewis –who earlier had got the goal with a splendid header from a free kick by Lindley –had two good shots brilliantly saved by Birkett. Eglington, however missed the earlier chance of the day when another goal to Everton might have made all the difference. Southport were quicker on the ball, passed more accurately and were more deadly in their tackling. Hitchen opened the score after 38 minutes and when Dugdale brought Walsh down in the penalty area at the 50th minute K. Powell scored from the spot kick. The third goal scored by Walsh was the best of the day. He beat three Everton defenders in the space of three yards after a slip by Jones and then placed the ball out of Burnett reach. Lewis after playing the first half a centre forward changed places with Higgins for the second portion but it made little difference. Though Lewis has much to learn, he showed he possesses a strong shot and made use of it often than most of his forward colleagues.
‘THIRDS’ HAT-TRICK OF WINS OVER SENIOR RIVALS
October 20, 1949. The Evening Express
Southport Maintain The Run
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Merseyside Third Division clubs seem to be taking a fiendish delight in lowering the colours of their local First Division rivals, and when Southport on merit, defeated Everton 3-1 in the Lancashire Senior Cup at Goodison Park yesterday, it was the third time this season a Third Division club had triumphed in a cup-tie against senior rivals. New Brighton defeated Everton and Tranmere Rovers beat Liverpool, both in the Liverpool Cup, and new comes this latest feat, which further emphasizes the football value and honest endeavour of our Third Division sides. Southport gave a most impressive display against a “luke-war” Everton, who had that air of superiority at the outset, but who were soon foiled out of their complacency by fast, direct and accurate football by Southport. Once Southport got a grip on the proceedings they held it until they lost centre half Bellas with a cut eye for five minutes, ad it was during his absence that the quick-shooting Lewis reduced the lead which Hitchen, Ken Powell and Walsh had built up. There was one brief period when it looked as if Everton would stage a recovery, but when luckless Eglington put his right foot to a peach of a Lewis centre, instead of using his forehead, the result was an “open-book.” Secretary Manager Gordon Hunt has built up a highly progressive and opportunists side at Haig Avenue. His boys gave Everton lessons in speed and precision of passing, and Hitchen and Wyles always were opening up the way. This Trevor Hitchen was maybe the outstanding success of the game. Signed from Wellington Town as a centre half, Hitchen has become a right half, who in ideas and action reminded me forcibly of Joe Harvey, of Newcastle. Bellas, whose injury is not serious and Hacking completed an intermediary trio vastly superior to Everton’s line, in which Tommy Jones seemed quite at a loss against the fast moving forwards. After this good show against Jones by Walsh the centre forward on trial from Celtic, I fancy Mr. Hunt will retain this fast moving player with neat ideas, freedom of movement and a shot. There was not a Southport weakness yesterday, and they impressed as much as Tranmere did at Anfield last week. If Port continues to take the initiative as they did in this game, then they should have few worries but the Everton machine I not moving smoothly.
October 20, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Plain Words To Everton
The Red Light Is Showing Again At Goodison
No matter how generous one may wish to be towards the losers of yesterday’s Lancashire senior cup-tie between Everton and Southport at Goodison Park, the unpalatable fact remains that with Everton having so big a proportion of senior players on view this defeat was a most humiliating one for the home side. It cannot even be said in mitigation that the Blues were “not trying.” They were not the plain fact is they were not good enough to get the better of a side which, on this season’s results, can hardly be called even a good-class Third Division team. On yesterday’s showing that latter phrase is hardly fair to Southport. Any stranger entering Goodison and not knowing either team might well have assumed that Southport were the seniors and Everton the Third Northerners. On paper, the Sandgrounders hardly seemed to have a chance. I confess feeling that way before the start, never dreaming that such an Everton eleven could be so utterly out of the running. One just looked on in bewilderment to see Southport serving up football with so much more method punch and polish than their supposed superiors. Bar one period half-way through the second portion, when Everton had a brief spell of ascendancy, Southport were on top almost throughout. They were not flattered by their 3-1 win. If justice had been done it would have been 4-1, for a late shot by Powell (K.) was undoubtedly well over the line when Burnett kicked it away. I am not going into such a painful subject as this at great length. Suffice it to say that the losers were outpaced and outmancurved that their finishing was as bad as ever, and that they seemed quite unable to do anything about it. No wonder the small crowd cheered ironically at times. Not that does a haporth of good. The players are doing their best, and want encouragement, not irony. If their best is not good enough, then the remedy lies “upstairs” not in jeers from the terraces. I’m not bothered about this defeat so much as about the future of Everton. I have been pointing to the writing on the wall at Goodison so long that I’m heartily tried of my own reaffirmation, yet I must say it again. There were lessons galore in this match, as there have been in so many others for the past three seasons. However much we dislike the prospect, Everton seemed fated for another stern fight against relegation unless there is quick and decisive action. It is a gloomy prospect. One gleam of hope is that there are a few other senior sides whose failings may again prove Everton’s salvation. But what a humiliating position for a team of Everton’s traditions to have to fall back upon such a prospect. Manager Cliff Britton did not see yesterday’s game. Along with directors R.E. Searle and Harold Williams he was watching the League of Ireland against the Scottish League at Dublin.
LET US HAVE MORE SPIRIT EVERTON!
October 21, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
By Leslie Edwards
Without barraging a secret I can say that not everything I have written about Everton Football Club has been approved at Goodison Park; Indeed, after one 6-0 defeat the puckish and likeable chairman Dr. Baxter (never given to over-statements) characterized my report as “not friendly.” Maybe, in its sincerity it was more friendly and of more use than others which may have tended to buttress and butter-up still further a team which on the day, was clearly not good enough. A candid critic has some uses. This morning what concerns us all is not whether Everton played worse at Chelsea last season than at Portsmouth this, but how best to help to prevent the club from sliding, spectacularly from their right place to the lower grade, in which they are so welcome for tradition and for pulling power at the gate. Talk of relegation with the season’s beginning not long out of the way may seem to be verging on panic but, far from that being so, many followers of the club of sound judgment suggest it as a certainly unless is a turn for the better. It seems incredible that the very players who worked at football miracle last season, after an almost disastrous start, should be those failing now. It might be that the reaction of having to struggle so hard and so long has its effect; on the other hand, I have heard it argued that the team, as a team is not good enough. This cannot be wholly true otherwise Everton’s good record at last back-end could never have arisen. Stories have gone round that there is too much training and this, like most of the other explanations of the club’s non-success can be discounted. I think one would be nearer tracing Everton’s fall to a combination of misfortunate’s (some of which cannot be mentioned) and to the strange way team fades to oblivion soon after the second half begins.
In the part any club was able to strengthen its team by signing new and better players; that day is past. The few players moving are mostly of anything but First Division standard and clubs with player
Who might become useful in Division 1 ask so much for them, the deal is not considered worth the risk. Thus Everton, today are at the moment entirely dependent on their existing staff. It is on them the thousands of followers of the club base their hopes for the immediate future. What is needed, many feel, is a change of heart on the field with no signs of dispiritedness and every player working to the last degree to get the side winning again. The match tomorrow, at Birmingham, is an important one because it will tell us pretty definitely, just where Everton stand. Birmingham are at even lower ebb than the side they meet. The Everton club, I believe is satisfied that if their side can maintain their first half standards and forget their fate in so many undistinguished second-halves matches can be won and the present downward trend stopped. In short many believe that the Everton team is not nearly so indifferent as the record makes it out to be, and that by their whole-hearted endeavour the players can prove it. And as a pertinent postscript one must surely ask “Why no place for McIntosh, whose goals last season put the finishing touch to his club’s recovery and who has not been guilty of playing the least distinguished part in what successes Everton have obtained this season?”
BLUES AT ST. ANDREWS
October 21, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Everton are away to Birmingham City, who forlornly at the foot of the table. Although Birmingham have won only one game all season this engagement will not be easy for the visitors, for the Midlanders are so badly in need of points that they will fight desperately to improve their position. They don’t want to return whence they came as soon as this, after only two seasons in the higher sphere. Birmingham’s defence last year was one of the soundest in the First Division. With their close-season forward signings it looked as though they were booked for a better spell this term. But things in soccer don’t always work out according to Euclid and not only are Birmingham getting little regard from their expensive signings but their defence has shown unexpected shakiness on many occasions. Having drawn away at Villa Park and Main Road Everton may perhaps make it a three some but they will have to go all out for anything they get. With only three points from the last 14 played for some improvement is essential if the Blues are to lift themselves from their present lowly state. A start on the upward trail tomorrow would be welcome. The Blues team will be selected from twelve, Lello has a slight cold, but is expected to be fit by tomorrow. Wainwright is not playing as he is suffering from a back injury. Team from; Sagar; Saunders, Dugdale; Farrell, Jones, Humphreys, Lello; Corr, Fielding, McIntosh, Powell, Higgins. Birmingham; Merrick; Carr, Jennings; Boyd, Atkins, Badiham; Havenga, Berry, Dailey, Brennan, Stewart.
Everton Reserves ( v Stoke City at Home); Burnett; Clinton, Moore; Lindley, Falder, Grant; Parker, Bentham, Lewis, Hampson, Eglington.
• Everton “B” v. South Liverpool “A” 1st round Lord Wavertree Cup at Bellefield
• Everton “C” v. Earle Utd, at Bellefield
• Marine Res v Everton “A” at Crosby
BIRMINGHAM V EVERTON
October 22, 1949. The Evening Express
When the Everton side was chosen just before the kick-off at St. Andrews today, it was decided to retain Jack Humphreys at centre half. Last week he took the place of the captain Tommy Jones, who appeared for Wales against England. McIntosh returned to lead the attack in place of Wainwright and Billy Higgins was introduced at outside-left to the exclusion of Eglington. Birmingham made no fewer than seven changes in their side. They brought in 21-year-old local product Carr at right back, fielded an entirely new intermediate line and had Willy Havenge a 21 year-old S. African, for the first time in the senior side at outside right. Heavy rain during the morning tended to make the pitch heavier than it has been for some time. Birmingham; Merrick, goal; Carr and Jennings, backs; Boyd, Atkin, and Badiham, half-backs; Havenga, Berry, Dailey, Brennan, and Stewart, forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Farrell (captain), Humphreys, and Lello, half-backs; Corr, Fielding, McIntosh, Powell, and Higgins, forwards. Referee; Mr. A.H. Blythe (Edmonton). In the absence of Jones, Farrell captained Everton –they were in white by the way. Birmingham were led by Dennis Jennings, who with Ted Sagar enjoys the distinction of being the oldest player in game today. Birmingham swung quickly into action and Humphreys was almost too timid in his pass-back to Sagar as Dailey raced through to Atkins’s long upfield clearance. When Everton came into the picture McIntosh slipped a lovely ball aside to Powell who flicked it on to open up the way for Higgins but unfortunately Higgins sliced his intended centre wide. In the next minute Berry missed a glorious chance of placing City in the lead. He gained possession not more than five yards from goal after Humphreys had missed his kick. Berry delayed a vital fraction of a second too long and Dugdale was able to come across and sweep the ball off his feet for an unproductive corner. Corr tried a long-ranger but he got too far under the slippery ball, and Merrick was not called on.
LOWLY ST. ANDREWS SIDE OFFERS EVERTON NO CONSOLATION
October 22, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Birmingham 0, Everton 0.
Birmingham; Merrick, goal; Carr and Jennings, backs; Boyd, Atkin, and Badiham, half-backs; Havenga, Berry, Dailey, Brennan, and Stewart, forwards. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Farrell (captain), Humphreys, and Lello, half-backs; Corr, Fielding, McIntosh, Powell, and Higgins, forwards. Referee; Mr. A.H. Blythe (Edmonton). The Everton team was made known to us only half an hour before the match began. The news when it came was sensational. Humphreys was preferred to Jones at centre half. When I asked Jones if he was fit, he answered “You had better ask Mr. Britton.” The club’s official intimation was that Jones was fit but that Humphreys would play.
Birmingham have only nine players who have not played in the first team this season. They introduced today for the first time Havenga a South African winger, and for a second time Atkins a Japanese born centre half. Everton played in white, and the kicking-in showed the greasy ball would be exceptionally difficult to hold. In the first minute Sagar had to take a tender reverse pass from Humphreys with Dailey following up fast. A good pass by McIntosh to Powell led to Higgins having every chance of making a centre, but he hopelessly mistimed it.
On treacherous going the players were slithering continually and Everton were twice caught first-footed, once by little Berry whose speed took him to an almost certain goal before he elected not to shoot but to turn the ball to the left wing. McIntosh was strong and full of ideas and directly from his prompting Fielding, well upfield, hit a cross shot which Carr kicked away near the goal line with the moustache Merrick nowhere in sight.
Lello and Higgins making a joint challenge on Merrick as he went up to take a Corr free kick caused the goalkeeper to lose possession, but an Everton foot was not available. On the other hand, Humphreys with a fine last ditch tackle, took the ball from Berry. Then, when he started for an angle shot by Boyd, Sagar slipped and was on the ground with the ball speeding through the air. He recovered his feet quickly to make a desperate foot of the post save. Higgins hit one particularly good ball across the field to Corr, but when the centre came McIntosh was offside.
Everton, after an indifferent start, were now much happier with the defence feeling its feet confidently against a line which was not so good as it had been in the early moments. Humphreys with yetanother good tackle deflected a Dailey shot which must have been on the mark, and then Sagar held a header by Brennan against the bar off a corner.
Save by Sagar
McIntosh out-headed Atkins time and again, but rarely was there an Everton forward up to make anything of such openings. Sagar made his best save when Stewart hooked the ball overhead, and Sagar had to dash back all the time keeping his eye on the ball, which threatened to creep under the bar. His one-handed flick over the top was a great piece of work. Birmingham at this moment were on the crest of the wave in a dramatic game in which nearly everything was done hastily at top speed. Only some fine defence by Farrell, Dugdale and Humphreys kept Everton out of trouble.
Saunders against the awkward Stewart was doing nobly. McIntosh easily the most dangerous forward opened the way after a throw-in for a Powell shot which deserved a goal. Merrick left him the far angle to aim at and Powell’s shot was ruled just there. It was nearly all the way when a wonderful one-handed save round the post came to Birmingham’s aid. Little Berry was nothing, if not alive and Sagar stood still while one of his shots sailed not very high over the top. Everton went all up for corners and though Saunders and Dugdale may have felt a bit exposed the prospect of a breakaway goal by Birmingham on such a pitch was unlikely.
Near To Goals
Everton were certainty getting near to goals. A volley by Powell which swung wide was headed unexpectedly across goal by Fielding. Havenga suffered a nasty blow in collision with Lello, but was able to resume.
Half-time; Birmingham City nil, Everton nil.
Everton’s opening minutes of the second half were their best so far. They had a better grip of the game. Admitting the Birmingham defence made some blunders, there was enough about the Everton side to justily some optimism. Corr, after out-heading his man, went on and but for handing on to the ball at the vital moment might have gone in to shoot.
He did well to make a square pass to Powell the most persistent shooter, who did not quite get full power into his drive. Saunders who had done famously made a fair imitation of a “Dicky Downs” sliding tackle to stop Stewart. The Everton defence appeared to stand still while Berry flashed through and was only baulked when delivering his shot.
Everton were luckless when Jennings charged Corr behind when the winger stood only a few yards from goal, picking up a Birmingham defender’s miskick and looking an almost certain scorer. This was a penalty but none was given. Lello used the ball indifferently and Humphreys, who had already spoken sharply to Stewart had little time to use it, he was so often a desperate last time. The usual signs of Everton indecision and doubt began to show in misunderstanding and what was worse, there was much discussion between the player of mistakes when the obvious thing was to try to retrieve the situation. Higgins was off for a few minutes after appearing to be his groin. Everton were quite luckless, Powell playing up a half shot was easily cleared. Final; Birmingham City Nil, Everton Nil.
• Marine 0, Everton “A” 1
TOM JONES WILL MAKE DECISION
October 24, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
Birmingham 0, Everton 0
By Leslie Edwards
Everton have gone two matches without losing either – even if the domestic scene seems likely to be disturbed by the leaving out of Tom Jones at Birmingham on Saturday. Jack Humphreys accompanied the party ostensibly to take the place of the doubtless Lello, but 30 minutes before the match Humphreys was told to strip and Jones was told he would not be required. So Jones’ experience in a short eight days took in an international appearance at Cardiff, a semi-reserve team appearance against Southport in mid-week and a place in the stand at St. Andrews –a shattering experience. The Everton view, I believe is that Humphreys played well enough against Bolton to justify his further inclusion. Whether Jones will be content to play Central League football with Everton is something which can be answered only by the player. Two Plymouth Argyle representatives went to Birmingham in search of a centre half. Well there were three on the premises –Jones, Buckhosue and Humphreys –and quite possibly they will get none.
So Near So Far
Everton were on speaking terms with a goal three times. First when Aubrey Powell, a persistent shooter aimed at the far angle and the ball was desperately flicked the post one-hands by the moustached Merrick; second when Jennings fired a clearance against the challenging Powell and the ball flew like a shot towards goal for Merrick to catch it nonchalantly as though he knew all the time it was coming and third when Corr was but to earth by Jennings in the penalty area. If he had gone down with more conviction I am sure the award could have been only a penalty kick. All the good goalkeeping was not on one side. Sagar recovered himself magnificently after slipping up when making his first move towards a shot and again when falling back to a surprise hook shot he got the ball over the bar when falling. Birmingham apart from the rugged Stewart and the ancient Jennings (he and Sagar are the oldest heads in the game) had only pint-sized inside forward Berry to cause optimism. Somehow the Birmingham side does not fit my relegation bill, though their record is almost hopeless. Everton at least have some hast for the future. Where for instance could one find two more workmanlike full backs than Saunders and Dugdale? Their shaky first minutes or two apart they performed most galliantly. And Humphreys who seemed a trifle slow always managed to get there and played well enough to force us to imagine that Dailey was absent.
Lello, who had been suffering from flu, had an indifferent first half but did better afterwards. The live and forceful Farrell played one of his best matches and covered more ground than anyone. This Everton forward line is worth persevering with because it has more punch than most others tried. Higgins kept coming in to take centres from the other wing and it was only his misfortune that they were eluding him by inches in the air, had a splendid day and if there had been closer support for him, some of his headed flicks must have produced Everton chances as it was it was too often a case of McIntosh versus the rest with the Everton inside forwards not there as strikers. Powell work was a model. Corr and Fielding (who was damaged late in the game both worked hard and if Everton are able to maintain their second half heartiness things must go better for them.
EVERTON’S SURPRISE MOVE
October 24, 1949, The Liverpool Echo
Everton’s last minute decision to play Humphreys at centre half at Birmingham and leave out Tom Jones was probably the most unexpected football move of the week-end, and if Humphreys continues to be preferred we may get once more an appeal by Jones to be placed on transfer. It has happened before but never has the request been granted (writes Contact). The club view, I believe is that Humphreys played well enough against Bolton a week last Saturday to justify his being chosen again. He certainly played well enough for a man so long out of touch with top-class football though a Humphreys at his best cannot compare with Jones as a constructive centre-half. Another change in the Everton ranks - though this was forced –was the appearance as trainer Alex Stevenson in place of Harry Cooke, who is suffering from an abscess on the foot. An Everton without Harry is unthinkable –he is their oldest servant –but if, as is likely, he is not fit for some weeks it is a probability. Cliff Britton expressed himself well pleased with his side’s work at Birmingham. To get a 0-0 verdict against a home side even more desperately placed in the table was a feat; and when one considers that Powell was twice denied by great goalkeeping by Merrick Everton got no more than they deserved. For a change the side fought it out to the last minute. Birmingham with many fewer individual successes than Everton were comparatively easily held, though little Berry, a youngster discovered in Army football by former Birmingham captain Harris, was fast and full of ideas. With McIntosh at centre forward, Everton had more punch, and if Fielding and Powells could have been on the pressure to take some of his headed offerings chances were there for the taking. Rarely have Saunders and Dugdale thown up so well and not often had Aubrey Powell had such a good match. Farrell was an outstanding half back, because he was so full of enthusiasm and covered enormous ground it his great endeavour. Sagar made saves as valuable, if not quite as spectacular as Merrrick’s and with Humphreys a dependable and stern centre half, Everton as a whole looked more promising than in most of their more recent games.
JACK HEDLEY’S TRIUMPHANT RETURN TO FOOTBALL
October 24, 1949. The Evening Express
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Jack Hedley’s great “come-back” to big-time football is nearing its accomplishment. Hedley on Saturday played in his first match since his unlucky injury, and indications are that his recovery is complete. It was eight months ago –Feb 12 to be exact –that Hedley played for Everton against Birmingham City at St. Andrews, and he suffered compound fracture of a leg, which some described as one of the worst they had ever seen. Hedley was months in hospital, and later crutches for a long time, but his spirit was high, and Jack began light training in September. The improvement continued and such was Jack’s confidence in kicking a ball that two weeks ago he was allowed to take part in his first trial match at Bellefield. On Saturday came a great moment for Hedley, for he had his first real game playing for the “A” team against Marine at Crosby and helping his side to a 1-0 victory. It was no easy game for Jack; in fact he was given rather a grueling time, but he came through well. Hedley was out there for the full 90 minutes, showing by his tackling and kicking that he has lost none of his confidence and that the injury is now merely a “bad dream.” There was no happier man on Merseyside on Saturday night than this Tynesider who has had the patience and pluck to overcome a misfortune. Just a little patience and plenty of competitive football, and Hedley will soon be ready to take any first team chance which may present itself.
Plymouth Run Rule Over Everton
Plymouth Argyle continued their quest for a centre half on Saturday when two of their representatives watched Humphreys, the Everton player, in the game at Birmingham. Plymouth are also interested in Welsh international Tommy Jones, but it is understood that Humphreys is the first choice. (writes the Evening Express Plymouth correspondent). The Plymouth directors will consider this matter at their meeting tomorrow night. The clubs have not yet commenced negotiations. When I tried to contact Mr. Cliff Britton today (writes Pilot) he was away on business.
October 24, 1949. The Evening Express
Pilot’s Log (Don Kendall)
Colleague Radar was at St. Andrew’s and his comments are; The welcome point was a reward for a really solid defensive performance, with Humphreys a tower of strength allied to an encouraging increase in fighting spirit. It was far from being an exhilarating game, for both attacks were inclined to be over anxious, and changed conditions clearly proved too sudden a contrast to the bone hard ground. Despite a slightly shaky start one could not fault Everton from a defensive viewpoint, but the attack is still not finishing effectively. The one man who might have won this game was Powell, who showed a willingness to snap up the half chance –an example his colleagues might have copied Aubrey adopted a roving mission and produced the best shot of the game which was saved by Merrick in masterly style. “McIntosh led the line diligently, used the ball accurately and invariably out-headed Atkin. Too often, however, he was a lone figure, striving to create a solo path through the City defence. Oh for a return to the old five-in-a-line mode of attack. Fielding worked hard without being the Fielding of worked hard without being the Fielding of old, and was handicapped late on by a leg injury. Corr was the more impressive of the wingers, and it must be admitted that outside left weakness still persist. Humphreys was the complete master of the centre of the field, holding Bailey in a vice while Farrell and Lello got through a tremendous amount of hard graft with Farrell more accurate in his use of the ball. Both Saunders and Dugdale had a splendid game covering Sagar so effectively that Ted had a quiet afternoon. A welcome point, but it must be tempered to some extent be recognition of the poor standard of the opposition.”
EVERTON NOT BIDDING FOR DON REVIE
October 26, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Although Everton’s name has been publicly coupled this morning with that of Don Revie, Leicester City’s inside forward – whose club are now ready to let him go for the highest cash offer, without a player –exchange angle –Mr. Cliff Britton tells me that Everton will not enter the bidding.
October 28, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
Derby No “Bogy” Side
Couple of Victories Might Restore Everton’s Confidence
Only four points separate Everton sixth from the bottom of the League chart, from Portsmouth, who are fifth from the top. A couple of consecutive victories for the Blues would transform their outlook and give the team greater confidence, but unless these come Everton will continue in the rough. They have a chance tomorrow to start on the job of lifting themselves in the table, for Derby County are only one point better off than the Blues, so that a home win should enable Everton to overtake them. Derby have never had much success in their visits to Goodison, though they won there last season by a gift goal in the first few minutes. As that was only their second victory since 1904, Everton have nothing in the “bogy” line to fear. But they cannot afford any mistakes. They must endeavour to put the right finishing touch to their approach work and not fade out in the closing stages. The defence will also have to keep a wary eye on the bustling Stamps in the middle and the wily and scheming Steel at inside left. Derby have introduced a newcomer to English football since they were at Anfield a month ago. This is Hugh McLaren a 23-year-old left winger from Kilnarnock, who got two goals last week against Huddersfield. Morris, of course, is a non-starter being laid up following his appendicitis operation. This is a blow to Derby, though they were not doing anything very great even before Morris’s illness. Everton make one change compared with last week, Wainwright coming in at inside right for Fielding, who is not fit. Team; Everton; Sagar; Saunders, Dugdale; Farrell, Humphreys, Lello; Corr, Wainwright, McIntosh, Powell (A.), Higgins.
Everton Reserves; (v. Sheffield United, away); Burnett; Moore, Rankin; Lindley, Falder, Grant; Lewis, Bentham, Catterick, Hampson, Eglington.
• South Liverpool v Everton “A” at Holly Park
• Everton “D” v. Garth Res, at Bellefield
EVERTON HOPE TO BREAK AN EIGHT WEEKS’ SPELL
October 28, 1949. The Evening Express
Derby County At Goodison
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Everton tomorrow set out to break an eight week spell without a victory when they face Derby County, the modern “Bank of England” club, at Goodison Park. Everton’s last win was over Huddersfield Town at Goodison Park, and since then Wolves and Charlton have gained narrow successes at the ground, while Everton have picked up points at Aston Villa and Birmingham City. The Blues are in a lowly league position, but are only a win away from a expectable position in the chart and they have gained only one point fewer than Derby who will be lacking stars tomorrow –men like Morris, who has been operated on for appendicis. Howe, who was transferred to Huddersfield on Thursday and probably Steel and Leuty, who are on the injured list. The County are a fine side, but maybe lacking that old fire of last season, when they completed a “double” over the Blues. Jack Stamps the centre forward, is the former New Brighton inside-forward and a brilliant opportunist, while they is immense power in the County half-back line. Webster is injured and so Townsend returns to goal in front of him, the new England star Bert Mozley, who will be partnered by Parr. The fact that Everton have not conceded a goal in their last 180 minutes of football indicates that the whole side is recapturing its old confidence in defensive ability. This should prove a really good test, productive of much good football and I fancy Everton will give their followers the tonic of a win in a game starting a three o’clock.
DERBY HAVE EARLY ESCAPES
October 29, 1949. The Evening Express
Defence Uncertain Against Everton
By Pilot (Don Kendall)
Everton seeking their first win since September 3, received Derby County at Goodison Park today. Derby lacked the services of international Steel and Morris and were forced to play McLaren their new winger from Kilnarnock at inside left with A. Oliver at outside left. Fortunately for the County Leuty reported fit. Everton had Wainwright back at inside-right following injury. A reunion at the match was between Duggie Livingstone the former Everton full back, who is relinquishing his post as trainer to Sheffield United and Tommy Scott the former Liverpool inside forward. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Farrell (captain), Humphreys, and Lello, half-backs; Corr, Wainwright, McIntosh, Powell (A.), and Higgins, forwards. Derby County; Townsend, goal; Mozley and Parr, backs; Ward, Leuty and Musson, half-backs; Harrison, Powell (T.), Stamps, McLaren, and Oliver (A.), forwards. Referee; Mr. L. Richardson (Doncaster). Wainwright out-headed McLaren and swept away to the left where he enabled Powell (A.) to get Higgins away for a quick cut in and shot which flashed across the face of the County goal. There was a thrill when Powell broke clear at centre forward and as Townsend advanced Powell cutely lobbed the ball over his head, but it went a foot too high and over the top. Higgins was injured in a tackle by Mozley and the assistance trainer, Alex Stevenson, received a warm-welcome when he ran on to attend to Higgins who was soon able to resume. Derby were in trouble following Farrell’s quick throw-in, but they extricated themselves in rather scrambled defence. In fact the County had not opened at all confidently defence, as witness Mozley’s mis-kick when Farrell tried to “find” Higgins with a long ball. Mozley was able to make a quick recovery, but the opening minutes proved Everton as the more workman-like side, with McIntosh leading the line well and Wainwright proving that the week’s rest had done him the world of good.
Oliver’s surprise pass straight across the field to Harrison saw Stamps and Humphries make a double dual bid for the return, but Sagar came out to cover up well. Stamps was covering a lot of ground and it was he who helped Harrison to come inside with the first direct shot of the match – a glorious left foot drive from eighteen yards which had “goal” written all over it, until Sagar flung himself out to his right to make what I consider to be one of the greatest saves in his twenty one years with the club. Sagar beat the ball out and then recovered his balance to dash out and complete the clearance. Sagar leapt out to make a slip catch off Oliver’s centre and when the ball was lobbed across to Harrison the winger tried a quick right foot shot, and Sagar was there to make the safe catch. Came Everton’s turn when McIntosh moved away to leave Powell (A.) the occupant of the penalty area. Powell neatly nodded the ball past Leuty to make a low centre for the in-running Higgins. Townsend dived outwards to take command. Everton forced two corners and from the second Lello came in to Corr’s centre as Townsend failed to connect but the ball was travelling just a little too fast. A glorious pass by Musson to Stamps saw Oliver away and his low centre looked a certainty for Powell (T.) on the penalty spot when Dugdale made an amazing intervention getting the ball away, but receiving a knock in the stomach. The Derby inside-right sportingly signaled to the referee although the ball was still in play. Dugdale was able to continue to see the Everton forwards combine nicely on the right, and although Wainwright first ran in to the Leufy stumbling block, he had a second chance and this time hit a right foot shot which Townsend saved low down. A mis-head by Saunders was of immense assistance to Oliver and although Lello was there to clear the centre, the ball dropped before Powell (T.) who tried a hook which sped a yard wide. McIntosh and Wainwright responded to Aubrey Powell’s clever positioning, and glided to his left for Higgins to come in with another shot which he sliced just a little too much, and the ball went beyond the far post. Powell (A.) was getting no luck at all with his finishing and now he shook his hands in despair when after showing anticipation, he was perfectly positioned to accept Higgins’ short centre, and stabbed the ball as he thought into the net. Yet Townsend was on the spot to beat the ball away. Townsend was there again when McIntosh headed in from Higgins centre. It was Sagar again who saved Everton in this even ad highly interesting game. When Stamps hit first time a delightful pass from McLaren the ball was going just inside the far post, but Sagar dived out and with his left arm at full stretch managed to grab the ball. The pendulum swung again Corr gliding the ball inside for Wainwright and Townsend to race for it. Wainwright just won and although he got the ball between Townsend’s legs as they collide it, had not sufficient power to reach the goal-line and it was booted behind for a corner. Derby were making a feature of the cross-field and as it always does it caught the defence on one leg, but good covering and then an all-too hasty shot by Harrison brought relief. In the 30th minute Derby took the lead due more to the persistence of Stamps than to the actual scorer, Harrison. Stamps bustled his way past Humphreys and then pushed the ball to his right for the unmarked Harrison, who looked suspiciously offside, to flash the ball into the net.
DERBY COUNTY ADD TO EVERTON’S LOW LEAGUE ANXIETIES
October 29, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton 1, Derby County 2
A Derby team minus Steel was much on its mettle, and won pulling-up, though the score suggests otherwise. Everton did their best in the first 10 minutes and then reverted back to their less spirited style. Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Dugdale, backs; Farrell (captain), Humphreys, and Lello, half-backs; Corr, Wainwright, McIntosh, Powell (A.), and Higgins, forwards. Derby County; Townsend, goal; Mozley and Parr, backs; Ward, Leuty and Musson, half-backs; Harrison, Powell (T.), Stamps, McLaren, and Oliver (A.), forwards. Referee; Mr. L. Richardson (Doncaster). Goodison Park was far from filled for the Derby County match. I don’t suppose the attendance has been smaller in any League match at Goodison this season. Everton played Wainwright in the place of Fielding, who is still not fit, and Derby, although finding Leufy fit, had to rearrange their left wing through Field’s absence. McLaren normally a winger, came to inside forward and Oliver (A.) was at outside left. Everton began with two moments of life in attack, but in neither case was the shot on the target. Higgins first slewed the ball right across the face of goal, then Aubrey Powell got a through pass and heavily challenged as he made his few strides before driving the ball, hit a fierce one over the top.
Next Townsend timed his collection of a McIntosh shot – made difficult through a deflection – and Derby went on for Musson to offer a sharp chance to Harrison and others, who just could not make contact with their heads. Higgins was injured after five minutes, and when the Everton trainer came on the crowd had a murmur surprise to see little Alex Stevenson taking over Harry Cooke’s job. Higgins was able to resume after lying quite still and appearing to be badly hurt. The first ten minutes was a very much cut-and-thrust, and the Everton team as a whole were much more vigorous and full of fight. Derby, in two or three incisive passes –a great one from left winger to right winger starting it – were dangerous until Stamps found the ball running too far forward, and Sagar was there first. Musson was outstanding, and a gentle but persuasive through pass by him led to the burly Stamps making a left-foot shot which was there but for a full length Sagar save, in which he took the ball only at the second attempt. Powell’s centre immediately afterwards, almost from outside left found his right wing partner, whose direct shot Sagar patted down. A good headed flick by McIntosh was taken up by Aubrey Powell, who did not pull his centre across goal sufficiently to escape Townsend’s dive for possession – a good piece of work. Derby’s forward progression was smoother than Everton’s, but Everton were playing immeasurably better than in any match since the “Derby” game. Wainwright did well to poke a tentative shot through the ruck, but Townsend was scarcely in danger of being beaten by it.
Stamps gave McLaren a pat on the back after he had pivoted quickly and delivered a shot at an unexpected angle, Sagar having to shake across his goal to see the ball round the right side of the post. Whenever the ball hovered in the neighborhood of the Everton goal there was a cathedral-like hush of apprehension from the 35,000 spectators. The only noise arose when Everton moved forward in attack, and they did when Higgins once again tried to beat the angle and again found the angle beating him. A Higgins centre, low and parallel with the goal line, created a hard chance for Aubrey Powell, who could only tap the ball towards goal and hope for the best. It was a surprise move, but Townsend was alive to it, and again Aubrey went away throwing his hands in the air in vexation. After one of those stupid stoppages while the referee moved a ball back a yard for Parr to take a free kick, Stamps looked certain to score with an oblique shot, until Sagar, skidding down to the ball, and reaching it only with outstretched finger-tips, made his second great save from the Derby leader. Dugdale added his share of work by stopping at short range a useful shot by Harrison.
Very gallantly Wainwright did not flinch when meeting the moustainous Townsend head-on, close to goal. He succeeded in poking the ball under the goalkeeper and towards goal, but was not able to recover in time to do anything about it. Harrison with a left foot shot, and the Derby Powell with a terrific right foot were only fractionally wrong in their direction. It came as no surprise when Derby scored through Harrison after half-an-hour’s play. Stamps shook off the challenge of Humphreys, struggled free of his fetters, and then, instead of trying to score himself, lobbed the ball over to Harrison, who did all that was required with an adequate shot. Everton had gone off the boil, but came to life with a burst by Wainwright who all but ploughed through a phalanx of Derby defenders. Stamps was doing pretty well much as he pleased, and Derby were worth more than a goal lead. They had Everton pinned down at this stage without being able to make their supremacy tell. For the third time Higgins tried his luck with the cross-shot and for the third time his pace was right, but his direction faulty. Leuty and Wainwright were damaged simultaneously, Leufy appearing to get Wainwright’s studs on his thigh. Meantime, Corr had gone on to get a corner, and after the injured had been attended to this was taken, and Townsend, getting the ball away, found Powell returning it in a shot which caused the Derby goalkeeper to make his first real save of the half.
Half-time; Everton 0, Derby County 1.
An inspired header by McIntosh almost to Corr’s feet was not picked up and a great chance was lost. But a moment later Higgins made a brave effort to turn a fast ball from the right wing into goal, and at least the succeeded in keeping the ball in play. Musson’s most artistic drag-pass to Oliver, now back on the wing, was the forerunner of a shot by that player, which, though deflected, still found its mark and brought yet another Sagar save.
Everton were missing what few chances they were given, and McIntosh, going on when Derby appeared to think he was offside, might have done better than he did. He delayed things so long, the Derby defence was able to cover up and crowd him out. Both the Everton full backs did well in turn, but when Harrison shot across goal and Sagar failed to reach the ball. Oliver, coming in fast, was within inches of sliding it beyond the goalkeeper for goal No.2. The best individual run of the match was by Stamps, who walked through almost as he pleased, and then gave Sagar another low shot to field. The Derby half back play was excellent, notably Musson’s and the team as a whole was striding through the game with an ease that showed them to have much in hand. The Derby left wing, though small, was full of tricks, and the sharp way McLaren got the ball out to Oliver, and the manner in which Oliver at once accepted it and pushed it forward with a flourish of the foot, was further evidence of their ability. Stamps showed some speed for a man of his build, and his use of the ball was splendid. What a great player New Brighton had in the old days, and how little we realized how good he would eventually be. Saunders, coming up field, did extraordinarily well except on the odd occasion when he lost possession.
A great long-distance shot by Stamps and one more full-length Sagar save brought life into the game with a jerk. There was tremendous pace about the effort, and that it should cause Sagar such a save when the shooter was so far out was a good gauge of its speed. Stamps must have been at least 25 yards away. Minus Steel, the Derby side functioned admirably and to find such a grand inside forward as McLaren through the emergency move of playing him there, was still good fortune indeed. The Everton defence at this stage was plainly fighting a losing battle, and there was not much help in their moments of stress from the forward line. Corr, who had delayed making his centre, won another corner, but was damaged in the process, and was off the field Lello became outside left and won another corner. There was a mysterious decision against Everton from this, when Corr stood apparently with the goal at his mercy. Oliver, cutting in to beat Saunders from a Stamps pass, shot hard and true, but again Sagar was there with his ready sure hands.
Beaten By Numbers
Wainwright twice failed against weight of numbers when trying to plough through. Everton’s best shot this half was from Lello, who hooked the ball in unexpectedly in a series of all-up Everton attacks, by which they hoped to storm the Derby defence. Stamps and McLaren, in a sharp interchange of passes, opened a way for Stamps to hit a cracker-jack shot, for which Sagar was perfectly positioned. Meantime Townsend was hitting the dead ball with the length and precision of a siege gun. Five minutes from time McLaren scored a second for Derby. He was at first denied from point-blank range by Sagar, who got the ball away from the oncoming Stamps, but before the goalkeeper could recover, McLaren had followed up with a second shot. Almost right from the kick-off Higgins produced a centre from which Aubrey Powell scored when standing not more than five yards out. Sagar made still one more save from McLaren. Final; Everton 1, Derby County 2. Attendance; 38,029.
SHEFFIELD UNITED RES V EVERTON RES
October 29, 1949. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton were left trailing by the speedy Sheffield forwards. Warhurst went clean through, but missed the Everton goal from only six yards range. United were equally fortunate a moment later. Catterick failed from a position just as easy. Final; Sheffield United Res 0, Everton Res 0
• South Liverpool Res 3, Everton “A” 1
EVERTON –ACT NOW
October 31, 1949. The Liverpool Daily Post
By Leslie Edwards
Everton 1, Derby County 2
The hundreds of Everton spectators who turned their attention from this match on Saturday, and stood shouting advice and insult in the direction of the directors box, not only missed Powell’s goal, they timed their protest badly. If they had desired to open their hearts to the club about the team the appropriate time was before a ball was kicked. Admitting it is aggravating to have to see a club like Everton beaten so frequently, no good is done by such outbursts. It is easier by far, to say what is wrong with Everton than so offer anything more constructive than the suggestion that the time for signing new players is not only ripe, but over ripe. Many of the critics if Everton and the team are so far off the beam they are in complete darkness. On the other hand the side does seem to lack lighting qualities. In this match it may have been that having started brightly and with much fire and fight the Everton team slowly but inevitably came to the conclusion that we shared that Derby were so far ahead of them in physique and in football ability that there was not a lot of use in trying to beat the count to borrow a boxing phrase.
Derby with Stamps touching form such as we have never seen even from him might well have won by such a distance that Everton would be in deeper despair; the saving and salving feature was the goalkeeping of Sagar whose single-handed defence against a variety of shots was so frequent we almost looked upon his great sequence of saves as commonplace. Maybe they were for a goalkeeper kept so hard at work. I liked Saunders for his inspired and inspiring effort and of him at least it could be said. “He leaves us in no doubt that he is after the ball and means to get it. The Derby team, with a backbone of big defenders and half-backs all purpose and artistry was plainly too good even without Steel, for an Everton whose attack failed with early and vital chances . In McLaren a winger played at inside forward, Derby have a readymade switch for Steel whenever they feel inclined to see him. In their Powell they have a big forward whose work in this match was of International class. The goals were by McLaren and Harrison (Derby) and Powell (Everton). Everton must make a move towards ensuring their own safely. Now is the time!
October 31, 1949. The Liverpool Echo
I wish the prospects at Goodison were half as bright as they are at Anfield. The Blues defeat by Derby County cost them two places in the League chart. There is a gleam of hope in the fact that only three points separate Everton and Chelsea ten places higher in the table, and that quite a moderate degree of success would soon life the Goodison club to a less anxiety position. Unfortunately, the recent form of the side has given little grounds for anticipating much success against any but the poorest of teams. That is no excuse for poking fun at the Blues, as so many people have been doing recently. The facetious-minded have been in their element. “Jokes” and wisecracks have been reaching me by the dozen, all of which have been confined to the wastepaper basket. To publish them would do no good. Neither can any good come from hurling derogatory remarks at individual players, such as I heard on Saturday, or by demonstrations beneath the directors box, natural though the latter may be to supporters who have grown tired of waiting for signs of something tangible being done to remedy the position. I have already stressed the danger which lies ahead so often that there is little point in further underlining the obvious. We are almost back to the anxious days of last season, possibly with a little more hope now than existed at this time 12 months ago, but not much. To some extent the club’s position has been due to bad luck in one or two games, but that is far from being the whole story. Injuries have not been particularly troublesome; certainly nothing like so numerous as they were this time last season. Next to poor finishing, lack of morale seems to have had much to do with recent defeats. This was particularly noticeable on Saturday, when, after a promising start, the Blues became ragged and “nervy” once Derby had taken the lead. True, they had a spell in the second half when they showed some fighting spirit and determination, but the old painful lack of finishing Powell excepted, was still there. I don’t propose to detail individual failings, Suffice it to say that only Sagar, Lello and Powell really lived up to what we know they can produce at their best. Powell was unlucky with his shooting, but at least it was good to see somebody shoot with power and reasonable accuracy. What the future holds remains to be seen. We can only wait in patience, hoping for the best, but somewhat fearful of the worst unless long-standing weaknesses are remedied.
It is becoming rather momentous having to deny reports of the alleged desire of our local clubs to sign certain players. Everton’s name has been coupled today with that of Hugh Russell, centre forward of Gillingham, in whom they are said to be showing interest. Manager Cliff Britton says this is not so.