BOLTON FIERY QUINTET
September 1, 1945. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton Defence Tested
Bolton turned the tables on Everton at Burnden Park and, in my opinion were worthy of their victory. All the goals had been top-class. Two goals in one minute was the high spot of the game. Bolton Wanderers;- Fielding, goal; Threlfall and Hubbick, backs; Taylor, Hamlett, and Murphy, half-backs; Woodward, Hunt, Lofthouse, Barrass, and Howe, forwards. Everton;- Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Mercer, Humphreys, and Watson, half-backs; Grant, Catterick, Lawton (captain), Boyes and Makin, forwards. Referee; Mr. W. Prescott (Southport). Much to the pleasure of the Bolton people Tommy Lawton turned out for Everton. This news was also a delight to the many Merseyside spectators present. Bentham, however, who is nursing a damaged ankle, was unable to play, and Catterick took his place. There was quite a good attendance and Burnden Park turf looked in grand condition. Lawton, by the way, tells me that while his injury was not completely recovered it was well on the way. Perhaps today’s outing would give it the necessary “warming up.” The Wanderers were soon off the mark. They make a habit of this sort of thing, and it is surprising how it so often catches the opposition on one leg, as it were. With the slightest bit of luck the Wanderers might very easily have taken a goal in two minutes, for Hunt was through, suggested he would pass, but instead shot, and the ball went speeding outside the upright. It was so close, however, that Burnett took the precaution of driving for the ball. That was the Wanderers turn, Everton’s turn came when Lawton and Boyes changed places. There was again a possibility of a goal, but the ball came too fast for Boyes to trap and it went to a defender, who cleared.
Everton were not done with, and Makin seemed to be bound on a journey through the Wanderers’ defence, only to find himself crowded out. The football was entertaining, was fast and had its thrills, particularly so when Hunt, with as astute pass, put Howe through, but the Everton defence got out of their difficulty by solid defensive measures. Although the Wanderers’ attack looked the much more dangerous when on the move, it was the Bolton goal which had the narrowest escape thus far. Grant who had cut in, offered the ball to Lawton. Even then there did not appear any great danger to the Wanderers goal, but one cannot afford to take chances where Lawton is concerned. Much to the surprise of the onlookers and certainly to the wanderers’ defence, Lawton’s shot shook them, for it struck the upright with Fielding in such a position that nothing could have helped him had the ball been an inch further in. Earlier the England centre-forward had shot over from a free kick. The Wanderers, working fast, carried the game into enemy territory, and the Everton defence had many severe tasks before the dangers were averted. Humphreys was a strong figure when Bolton made their moves, but the Everton defence almost fell when Jackson misjudged the flight of the ball and let in Lofthouse. The Wanderers’s centre does not miss many chances of this sort, but he had bargained without Humphreys who nipped in and cleared what seemed to be a desperate position. There were greater thrills to follow as, for instance when Howe made a centre-cum shot which Burnett saved. Boyes and Makin were instrumental in framing and making an Everton goal at 21 minutes. Makin came in and passed to Boyes, who promptly turned it into the net. It looked simple but actually was not so, for the Wanderers’ defence had to be beaten before Makin could make his pass. It was a ding-dong battle. One minute you could see the wanderers swarming round the Everton goal, the next Everton were in the Bolton penalty area. Fielding had a slice of luck when Makin came dashing in and scooped the ball into the goalmouth, where Fielding was set to make the catch and save. The half-hour produced the equaliser. It was the result of a brilliant shot by Lofthouse. He seemed to be outside the penalty area when he unleashed his low drive the ball speeding at cannon-ball pace –inside the near upright. Burnett, however, made amends a little later when he leapt high to save a lob effort by Woodward. The Wanderers attacked furiously and how the Everton defence escaped further blows was astonishing. One of the reasons was stubborn defence, if somewhat lucky, and Burnett.
Bolton put on tremendous pressure just before the interval, and at times several forwards were waiting for the pass, which had it come, would undoubtedly have spelt danger to the Everton goal. But there was just that inclination to dribble just one pace more. That second meant failure. The Wanderers had been the more purposeful side, and had missed one or two chances, but when saving that I am not unmindful of the great defence Everton had put up against a really fiery and capable quintet of forwards, ably backed up by sound half-backs. Just on half-time Howe gave Lofthouse a perfect opening a few yards out of goal, but the Wanderers centre forward kicked wildly round the ball when it only needed a tap.
Half-time; Bolton W. 1, Everton 1.
Jackson was injured in the last minute of the first half, but turned out for the second half. Everton immediately went into the attack, and Boyes had a shot deflected into the goalkeeper’s hands. Bolton, by this move, were placed on the defensive, and within a minute they had another lucky escape. Makin made a run and centre, and with the ball hanging in the air, Lawton leapt up and nodded the ball for what seemed a certain goal.
The crossbar, however, saved Fielding just as it had done in the first half. Another Lawton header flashed over the crossbar, and Makin also tried to nod a goal, but was wide of the mark. The wanderers broke away from their defensive methods, and Burnett watched one shot travel over the bar. The people behind the Bolton goal had a nerve shock when they saw Lawton through, but the England leader only half kicked the ball, which trickled towards the Wanderers goalkeeper, who cleared. Lawton immediately afterwards started to limp as though his injury was taking effect. When he attempted to run he could produce no speed, and shortly afterwards called upon trainer Cooke to have his leg rubbed. At the same time Bolton were clamouring round the Everton goal, but they could not find a way through to the net. Once again the Everton defence, by good luck saved the situation. Bolton got back to something like their first half form and Burnett had to make a lightning save from a Howe header which had the power of a shot. The football was dour rather than scientific, but it had its moments, one of them being when Hunt tried to run through the Everton defence and was only beaten at the last moment. The Wanderers fought hard for a leading goal, which came at the 67th minute as the result of a grand drive by Woodward. Within a minute the Wanderers went further ahead through a great goal by Howe, who closed in on a Hunt pass and swept the ball into the back of the net. This was a complete turnover, although one could not deny that Bolton had been shaping for goals more often than Everton, but few had anticipated two goals in a minute. Everton were now up against it. They continued to battle strongly although it could not be said that Fielding was having anything to do. Everton were not without their spells of attack, but there was no great punch to conclude their efforts although Catterick once appeared to try a first timer which ended up against the side netting. Hamlett, the big tall powerful centre-half, who had a lot to do with the curbing of the Everton forwards, once again demonstrated the height in the goalmouth is a valuable asset. He headed away a Makin header which might easily have been turned into a goal. With a two goal lead, Bolton could afford to ease a little, but there was no disputing that they were a dangerous lot when raiding, and Burnett had to rush out of his goal and kick clear to prevent Howe getting in another of his great drives.
Final; Bolton Wanderers 3, Everton 1.
• Everton Reserves 2, Blackpool Reserves 6
September 3, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
Bolton Wanderers 3, Everton 1
Hard-Fought Game at Bolton
Although they lost at Goodison Park in mid-week, Bolton Wanderers staked their claim to being one of the best sides in the North League, so it was not surprising that they reversed their decision in the result game at Burnden Park. The margin was more convincing however, for they beat Everton 3-1 after a game which was hard fought at a fast pace. I am not given to making excuses but I must say that Everton were unfortunate in twice hitting the woodwork and they claim that Woodward “armed” the ball before he got it down to shoot the second goal. Lawton is emphatic that his header which struck the crossbar and shot down into the goalmouth was well over the line before Hamlett kicked it out. But as against those things I am not unmindful of the many tussles in the Everton goalmouth when the ball was driven out more by good luck than good management. I do say however, that luck was not on Everton’s side. The Wanderers however, were definitely the better side and well worthy of their success, but those little turns in fortune’s wheel may have made a whole heap of difference to the result. Bolton were more sprightly, Everton the more methodical without showing the “pep” necessary to check these rampant Wanderers who went forward through the long and accurate pass, and had their shooting been up to standard of their midfield play they might have won more handsomely. Everton seemed slow in comparison, and the lack of inches in the forward line a heavy handicap against such tall and powerful defenders, like Hamlett and Threlfall. A ball in the air in their goalmouth belonged to them.
The first big thrill of many was Lawton’s surprise shot which bumped up against the upright and caught Fielding unaware. After twenty-one minutes Boyes scored Everton’s goal. Nine minutes later Lofthouse from twenty-yards out, scored for Bolton with a low drive. Thus the half-stage found the teams level. It was a few minutes after the interval that Lawton made his header on to the crossbar, to which I have already referred. Hereabouts Lawton received a knock on the knee –the injured knee at that –and was never again dangerous. The hour was reached without further score, and there seemed a possibility that Everton may share in the spoils, but then came two goals in one minute. Woodward, the outside-right moved into the middle, breasted the ball down (my view) and then shot his left foot into the net. The cheering had hardly subsided when the ball was in the net again, Hunt slipped the ball forward to Howe, who came up and cracked it along the turf to the far side of the goal. Attendance 16,051. Receipts £1,500. Bolton Wanderers;- Fielding, goal; Threlfall and Hubbick, backs; Taylor, Hamlett, and Murphy, half-backs; Woodward, Hunt, Lofthouse, Barrass, and Howe, forwards. Everton;- Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Mercer, Humphreys, and Watson, half-backs; Grant, Catterick, Lawton (captain), Boyes and Makin, forwards. Referee; Mr. W. Prescott (Southport).
• Liverpool lost to Burnley 3-2, Balmer, Liddell for Liverpool and for Burnley Hold, Kippax (penalty), Bush
LAWTON INJURY DOES NOT STOP TRAINING
September 3, 1945. The Evening Express
Tommy Lawton, Everton’s international centre forward, has come through his first run out, following the injury to his right knee, all right. Lawton’s leg is not completely fit, but is sound enough to permit Lawton doing a spot of training at Goodison Park today and tomorrow. This is cheering news for Everton and for England, who meet Ireland in Belfast on September 15 with Lawton leading the attack. There were fears that Lawton had aggravated the injury when he stubbed his toe at Burnden Park on Saturday when playing against Bolton Wanderers but he assured me yesterday that it is nothing serious. The knee is still sore of course but that is only to be expected. I have hopes of Lawton reporting absolutely fit for next Saturday’s visit to Preston. Anyway Lawton himself has given the lie to scare stories. Believe me, Lawton is so big-boned that it takes a lot to lay him low. Lucky for Lawton that he is too, because few players have to take so many bumps. Saturday was “Black Saturday” for our clubs, for not only did Liverpool and Everton suffer defeat, but the Central League and “A” teams of both clubs also were beaten. Six matches six defeats. It’s a long time since that happened.
Everton did not experience the best of luck at Burnden Park where they lost to Bolton Wanderers 3-1. The “rub of the green” was against them more than once. For instance at a vital period Lawton let go a terrific shot with the right foot, and with Fielding well beaten the ball came back off the upright. Just after –and with the Boyes and Lofthouse goals the only ones scored –Lawton leapt high above everyone to head against the bar. The ball dropped on the line and Hamlett booted away, but Lawton claimed that the ball was a foot over the line. Everton did well defensively and in attack until luck just went against them. Joe Mercer had another splendid game and is proving of meat mable to the side in all ways, while Jack Humphreys was again the master of Lofthouse. Everton’s attack could have been better for they had no man like Hunt to pick up the loose ball.
VALUE FOR MONEY
September 3, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
The football fan likes to see good goals. To see the ball hurtling into the net stirs the blood, especially if the scorer is on your side. Well, the 16,000 people at Bolton must have had blood pressure for all four goals were of high vintage. In the first game Bolton Wanderers were deemed unlucky to lose. Were they lucky to win on Saturday? I say “No” for they were the better side. But listen to what the Everton players have to say. Woodward’s goal came as a result of an “armed” ball which enabled him to get it under control; Lawton affirms that his header which hit the underside of the crossbar and ricocheted down to the goal line was a foot over the line before Hamlett kicked it out. I could not see Woodward’s “arm-work” for his back was my view, but I did get the impression that Lawton’s header bounced over the line. But excuses at this time of the day count for nought. The match is over and won and there it stands (writes Stoke). This Bolton side is a good ‘un; there is balance everywhere, but if I were asked to pin-point their strength I would say half backs. The big towering Hamlett was flanked by two sound working colleagues in Murphy and Taylor, who were not only-trusted defenders, but prompters to a forward line which moved at a great pace by the exploitation of the long pass. They always seemed to be up and doing, and many times were driven off in a scrambling sort of fashion, which tells in a nutshell the desperation of the Everton defence. I have nothing but praise for Greenhalgh, Jackson and Humphreys. Their was a heavy burden for the Wanderers forwards hit them with all they had, but an hour had passed by before they were completely mastered. Up to then the score stood at one all –Boyes and Lofthouse –and a draw was not out of the question. Prior to that Lawton had twice hit the woodwork, but I always had a fear of the wanderers’ forwards. They were so sprightly one pass and they were on the offensive. Everton looked slow by comparison. That was because they had to make three passes where one sufficed the Wanderers. There was also a lack of inches in the forward line, and against men with inches to spare the ball in the air was of little use to chaps like Grant, Boyes and Makin. In footwork Everton were daintier, but not punchful enough; the punch was all with Bolton, yet even they misfired at times. Lawton was not himself, and on top of that he received a knock on his already doubtful leg, which reduced his effectiveness, yet he frightened the home supporters when he made a surprise shot which caught Fielding rapping to awake to find the woodwork had saved him.
LAWTON ASKS FOR TRANSFER
September 5, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
By John Peel
At the Everton Football Club board meeting last night Lawton, the Goodison Park club’s English international centre forward, requested to be placed on the transfer list and the matter is to be considered at the next meeting of the board. Three months ago Lawton found himself forced to make the same request owing to his wife being medically advised to leave Liverpool, preferably for residence in the South. Eventually however Lawton withdrew this request on being assured that everything possible would be done to get him a house in a district which would meet with medical approval so far as Mrs Lawton was concerned. Unfortunately, houses are difficult to get these days, and although Everton F.C. have done all they can, they have unable to find a suitable place. As a result the player has been increasingly worried about the position, so much so that his second request to be placed on the transfer list has been brought about. There is no difference between Lawton and the Everton club, and the player would be sorry to have to leave the Goodison Park team. Lawton joined Everton from Burnley in December, 1936 when 17 years of age, and since being with the Goodison Park club has gained every honour in the game except a Cup Final medal. At present he is in the Army.
TOMMY LAWTON’S TRANSFER REQUEST
September 5, 1945. The Evening Express
Tommy Lawton, Everton’s international centre forward, is still anxious to leave Goodison Park and join a southern club. Tommy’s second request for a transfer will be considered by the Everton directors at their next meeting. The request was made by Lawton some days ago so the position which arose last May crops up again. To say what the club is going to do would mercly be conjective, but certain it is that Evertonians treated Lawton in the same fair considerate manner they do all their players and that they have no wish to lost the best centre forward in the game at the moment. No club would wish to lose a player of Lawton’s abilities. However Mrs Lawton has been advised by her doctor to live away from Merseyside, and although a hope arose that the residential difficulty could be overcome –it led to a withdrawal of the transfer request in June-Tommy and his wife have not found it workout like that and so Tommy is “wanting away” as they say in Scotland. Now we have to await the Everton pleasure, and even if the Blues say “yes” it is no certainty that Lawton will go for first must come forward the club willing to invest the big sum Everton are certain to ask for a player for whom they paid about £6,750 at the age of 17, and who now, at 26 next month is approaching his prima. Tommy leaves Merseyside for Oswestry today in connection with an Army posting, but said to me he hopes to be able to play at Preston on Saturday. One thing I will say to Lawton, if he has to go, is that any parting will be a matter of great regret to Merseyside football followers.
LAWTON ASKS FOR TRANSFER AGAIN
September 5, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Everton Faced with Difficult Problem
As I forecast on Monday, Tommy Lawton has again asked Everton to place him on the transfer list, which will be a blow to the club’s followers, who can hardly visualise a post war Everton without him. The board considers his request at their next meeting. They may do as Stoke have with Soo- ask him to meet them to talk it over. It is a ticklish question. Everton have known how the player has been worried over his wife’s health and I can assure you they have made every possible effort to overcome the problem. But it isn’t easy. Lawton wants a decision as quickly as possible in view of the approaching winter which will be his wife’s most trying period. To keep him or let him go –that is the problem. Whether its better to part, however reluctantly with a player who “wants away” or keep him against his wish. It should be emphasised that there is no “feeling” between club and player. Nowhere are players treated with better consideration for human understanding than at Goodison. Everton make no public song about it, but present and former servants bear witness to the kindly sympathy of the “best club in the world.” The whole matter is just one of those things that crop up and which nobody can help. Whether any club today would feel like putting down the money –assuming they agree to his request –which Everton would want for Lawton’s transfer is another matter. The fee asked is sure to constitute a record and be well over the £14,000 Wolves got for Bryn Jones. When I was at Stamford Bridge in June I sounded Lieutenant J.H. Mears, chairman of Chelsea, about their alleged interest in Lawton after his previous request. He told me then that their most immediate concern was two inside forwards and a defender. Well they’ve taken one forward since in Len Goulden, and a defender in John Harris. Chelsea with their dog-track angle are one of the few clubs to whom money is not an insuperable barrier. Other London clubs will be “interested” if Everton do invite offers. Whether they will have the wherewithal is a horse of another colour. Meantime however, let us wait and see what Everton decide. Theirs is a hard decision.
September 6, 1945. The Evening Express
Wally Fielding inside forward star of the Italian football fields, may make his Football League debut for Everton when they visit Preston North End at Deepdale on Saturday. Fielding, who signed for Everton on his return to this country in July, is among the thirteen players named by Secretary Mr. Theo Kelly from which final choice will be made. Fielding was strongly recommended to the Blues by friends stationed in Italy and did so well in representative matches over these that he actually joined the Army Tourists for their trip to Greece. Fielding is a Londoner and played excellently for Everton in the Glasgow charity match last month. Another new name is the Everton line up is that of Albert Johnson. At least the name is new only to those who do not follow the smart of the junior sides. Johnson is one of the Goodison Park youngsters who have made the grade. Eddie Wainwright who, made such rapid strides last season, and who has been assisting Middlesbrough, is also in the Everton six-player attack while Bentham who has been injured, is in the list. Lawton leads the side, and Wally Boyes who has been operating as an inside forward reverts to the customary outside-left role. Everton Reserves entertain Bolton Wanderers Reserves in the Central league at Goodison Park and the “A” team oppose Newton Y.M.C.A. Everton (from); Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Grant, Johnson, Wainwright, Lawton, Fielding, Boyes. Everton Reserves; J.A. Jones; Curwen, J.E. Jones; Cookson, McDonnell, R.L. Doyle; (from); Lowe, Cumner, Hill, Bell, Corkhill, Trentham. Everton “A” Mainest; Nolan, Lever; Goulding, Farrar, Tansey; Heath, Rothwell, Wright, G. Hannan, Myers.
Next Wednesday will be staged the first of the season’s Merseyside “Derby” games, for Liverpool entertain Everton at Anfield. It was feared that players selected for the England tour of Ireland the following week-end would not be available, but I got encouraging news from Joe Mercer, the England skipper, yesterday, I took time out to see Chamosaire win the St. Ledger at York, and met Joe with Mr. Dyson. Joe is stationed in York. I mentioned the “Derby” game, and Joe said that he had high hopes that he would be able to play. Good That hope of course, extents to Tommy Lawton who is also due to make the Irish tour.
EVERTON’S CHANCE AT PRESTON
September 7, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Preston put a stop to Blackpool’s all conquering progress in no uncertain fashion last Monday night which means the red light shines for Everton unless the Blues are right bang on form. Any side which cam smite Blackpool 5-0 demands respect. Everton will have the same rearguard and half-back line, and a defence considerably strengthened by the inclusion of Fielding and Wainwright. Pity this game is not at Goodison, for if Goodison folk feel as I do about it they are just bursting for the chance to see Fielding. Our appetites have been whetted by the reputation which has proceed him, and which has been amply borne out by reports I’ve had from Scottish friends who saw him in action against the Glasgow and District side last month. Preston also will be strengthened for they bring in Hunter, formerly of Plymouth Argyle, at outside right as partner to George Mutch, who has scored in each of North End’s four games. Jimmy McIntosh, who has got four goals in three matches, is at outside left. I think Everton can win this match if they go the right way about it. Here’s wishing them luck. Everton (from); Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Mercer, Watson; Johnson, Wainwright, Lawton, Fielding, Boyes, Wyles. Preston; Fairbrother; Horton or Simpson, Scott; Shankley, Summerbee, Hamilton; Hunter, Mutch, Dougal, Wharton, McIntosh.
"MAN FROM TOBRUK" SIGNS FOR EVERTON
Dundee Courier - Saturday 08 September 1945
TO PARTNER LAWTON.
An unknown London peace-time amateur with Walthamstow Avenue F.C., A. W. Fielding, the player who made a name Middle East Services soccer on his release after capture at Tobruk, was signed as pro fessional bv Everton last night. To-day plays inside-left to Lawton. England's leader, in the side at Preston.
“MAN FROM TOBRUK” SIGNS FOR EVERTON
September 8, 1945 Dundee Courier
To Partner Lawton
An unknown London peace-time amateur with Walthamstow Avenue F.C., A.W Fielding, the player who made a name in Middle East services soccer on his release after capture of Tobruk, was signed as professional by Everton last night.
DEFENCES WERE ON TOP AT DEEPDALE
September 8, 1945. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton and Preston Provide Few Thrills
Not the tense struggle we had anticipated. Rather lethargic, in fact, with Everton the masters. No great punch in either forward line. Fielding showed up well, but Mercer was the predominant figure, ably assisted by two sound backs. Preston N.E:- Fairbrother, goal; Simpson and Scott, backs; Shankley, Summerbee, and Hamilton, half-backs; Hunter, Mutch, Dougal, Wharton and McIntosh, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Bentham, Mercer and Watson, half-backs; Johnson, Wainwright, Lawton (captain), Fielding and Boyes, forwards. Referee; Mr. J.M. Brown, Ormskirk. Everton found it necessary to make changes, in their half-back line from a week ago. Mercer appeared at centre half –not a new position for him –with Bentham on his right flank. Preston had two changes from the side which whipped Blackpool on Monday. From a Liverpool point of view, the appearance of Fielding at inside left for Everton was the big attraction. I am told that he is the “goods” and more than one senior club has shown interest in his signature. Johnson, of course is the Everton man who had been a “guest” for Huddersfield. The conditions were ideal, and there was a fine crowd to see the start. It was good to see Wainwright back in the side and Lawton who is a great favourite at Deepdale, led his men out before 18,000 spectators. Quite early on Fielding was seen displaying excellent control, and he once put a ball through the middle in a fashion that should it be repeated was likely to be dangerous to the North End defence, particularly if Lawton was anywhere about. Preston took a free kick over on the right wing, but there was no danger to Everton resulted.
Over the Crossbar
There was a danger when McIntosh slipped a ball nicely across to Mutch who with the memory of his Blackpool goal still in his mind unleashed a drive which flew over the Everton crossbar. Everton’s reply to this was another fine piece of work on the part of Fielding, but on this occasion he failed to get the ball to the objective. Later Lawton offered the newcomers a great chance and Fielding should have taken it, but over anxiety caused him to shoot widely outside from well inside the penalty area. A misunderstanding in the Everton defence let in Mutch, whose angular shot was held up by Burnett. So far matters had been fairly even and Fairbrother had to save a tame shot by Wainwright who did well, however, to conclude his smart dribble with a shot of any sort. The North End defence came down on him like a ton of bricks. Let me mention here that the kick-off was twelve minutes late. Although the game was a tame character, with the defence usually on top, there were many flashes of excellent football. So far Lawton’s role had been a “passing” one, and he made some nice openings for his colleagues, but we had not had an opportunity thus far of seeing one of his big drives.
Across the Goalmouth
McIntosh was responsible for bring about the first big thrill. He centred across the goal, and a goal for Preston seemed assured, for Hunter had raced up, and was in a position to score, and should have done. His shot was dead on the mark, but Burnett and a full back between them kept the ball out, the goalkeeper finally coming out with the ball in his hands. Hunter was again in the limelight when he fired in an oblique shot which Burnett swept over his crossbar. Fairbrother was also called upon to save from Wainwright, and later kept out a full blooded drive by Fielding. However in the main, the defence held the whip hand when Lawton tried to force his way through and found Summerbee equal to the occasion. Burnett had to negotiate a free kick taken by Shankly. It seemed a lazy sort of game, for neither side seemed to be at full stretch. Perhaps it was that the ball was made to do the work and not the man.
The game needed five minutes to the interval when Everton launched an attack which produced a corner. This was taken by Boyes, who directed the ball right across the goal-face, and Wainwright came up to head a nice goal, the ball travelling well out of reach of Fairbrother.
Half-time; Preston N.E 0, Everton 1
As I have already stated, the rival defences had been chiefly the masters. When the second half opened the Everton defence was still equal to the occasion. Preston carried play to within the penalty area, where Mercer made his first error. He miskicked, but a colleague had covered up, so there was no loophole. There was a little more life in this half, and when Lawton veered over to the left and put across a good centre Boyes made a meritorious effort to glide the ball with his head beyond fairbrother. He was just a shade out in direction, however. Burnett saved a snap shot by Mutch. The ball came unexpectedly to the Preston inside left, but he hit it without any hesitation.
The ball seemed to be booked for the back of the net until Burnett, with a desperate rush across his goal, turned the ball outside –a good shot, and a good save. The home spectators were getting a bit irritable about the North End’s display. They were calling for more snap, but it was Everton who provided it when Lawton tried a shot, but was wide of the mark. This was uncommon, for the English international would have scored nine times out of ten from a similar position. Burnett made a flying catch from a centre-shot, and when Boyes ran through the North End defence to within a yard of Fairbrother a goal looked on the board. Few, however, had heard the whistle sound for “off-side” in the early moments of Boyes run. Once Lawton opened the way for Johnson, who could have gone on some yards before making his shot, but he preferred to take the “long view” and Fairbrother was able to save comfortably.
Mercer was one of the outstanding personalities of the game, his headwork being particularly effective. Before the match I was told about the North End’s dynamic game against Blackpool. There was nothing dynamic about them today. They were sedate, and had a lot of football ability, but in shooting there just wasn’t any, nor for that matter was there any from Everton. Mucth, who had been Preston’s best forward and principal shooter, was again on the mark only to find Burnett save the situation. Then came an Everton second goal obtained from the penalty spot. Lawton was wending his way towards goal when he was brought down by Summerbee, and the referee instantly awarded a spot kick, from which Mercer scored in 73 minutes.
EVERTON RESERVES V BOLTON WANDERERS RESERVES
September 8, 1945. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton fielded a strong side, but the Wanderers took the lead in 3 minutes, Littleborough firing into a empty net. Everton fought back in determined fashion, and the visitors goal was lucky to escape from shots by Wildes and Hill. After 30 minutes Bolton went further ahead, Tomlinson netting from close range. Half-time; Everton Res 0, Bolton Res 2
After the restart Everton did most of the pressing, but could force home their final efforts though good defensive play by Thompson and Frow. Bell reduced Everton’s arrears. Final Everton Res 1, Bolton Res 2.
Newton v Everton “A”
But for the excellent work of their goalkeeper, Everton Reserves would have been further behind in their match at Newton. The scorers were Edgar, Greenall and Dale. Newton was best served by Day, their centre half and captain. Half-time –Newton 2, Everton “A” 0
Full Time Newton Y.M.C.A 4, Everton “A” 0.
EVERTPON WIN AT PRESTON
September 10, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
Preston North End 0, Everton 2
The anticipated sparkling display between Preston North End and Everton at Deepdale did not materlise. Perhaps we had been led to expect too much by the fact that the North End had given an electrical display of football when they defeated Blackpool earlier in the week. It looked for something really bright from Preston on Saturday, instead of which we were treated to a display of lethargic football which savoured more of the end of the season than the beginning of the new one. It was not surprising that they were beaten 2-0, for Everton, without being brilliant were that much and more the superior side. They were capable of finishing off their attacks with a shot. The North End were unable to do so until the final minutes when Burnett made two superlative saves from Dougal and Wharton. Add two worthy shots by Mutch and you have the full total of Preston’s scoring efforts. Everton were not as sprightly s they might have been but their football was infinitely better than that of their opponents. They framed attacks with greater though and would attempt to score whenever an opportunity arose.
So tame was the play that there were frequent requests from the spectators to put some snap into it, but their calls were unheeded. One of the reasons for their complete subjection was the Everton defence which barred the way time and again. Mercer as pivot revelled in his work, and he was the outstanding personally on the field. With head or foot he was confident and sure, and he distributed the ball well. There was no aimless kicking, for he brought his colleagues into action by using the ball. He had good men around him. So that the Preston forward line was clamped down securely and unable to escape from the grip the Everton defenders had. Mutch was the one man with sufficient craft to beat him, but the remainder were prisoners in the full sense of the word. Everton’s new man, Fielding produced some clever football. He seemed strange in his way surrounding but he gave me the impression that he will be better with a closer knowledge of his partner’s style. I liked the way he tried to push the ball through the middle but Lawton seemed to be at full stretch. He was more concerned with passing the ball than shooting, and it, must be said he met some good opponents. He was responsible for Mercer’s penalty goal for he was coming in when he was brought down. He was however, a quiet Lawton. Wainwright had a good game and headed a nice goal just before half-time, but in the main, most of the honours rested with the defenders. Preston N.E:- Fairbrother, goal; Simpson and Scott, backs; Shankley, Summerbee, and Hamilton, half-backs; Hunter, Mutch, Dougal, Wharton and McIntosh, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Bentham, Mercer and Watson, half-backs; Johnson, Wainwright, Lawton (captain), Fielding and Boyes, forwards. Referee; Mr. J.M. Brown, Ormskirk.
• Liverpool draw 1-1 with Bury, Balmer scored for Liverpool and Griffths for Bury
W.LOWE SIGNED PROFESSIONAL FORMS
September 10, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
By John Peel
Everton F.C. have signed on professional forms, W. Lowe a twenty year old outside right who has been out of the game for some time, owing to a broken leg which he received while playing against Tranmere Rovers last November. He has made a complete recovery and already this season has played for the Everton league side against Bury at Gigg Lane a fortnight ago.
PLAYERS UNION GAINS ADDED STRENGTH
September 10, 1945. The Evening Express
The players Union grows strength week by week, and players who for a long time have stayed outside have now taken up membership. Among these are the majority of Everton including Tommy Lawton the England international now so much in the spotlight of news. Several players of other clubs have expressed the view that only as a united body can the players get their just reward, and some of the newcomers will I understand, demand quicker action by the authorities. One services player just back from overseas argued that £4 a match –less Pay As You Earn –is a “starvation wage.” That view is shared by the majority but I hear that the Union is determined to secure action on a vital and vexed point. The valuable help of players like Joe Mercer, of Everton, one of the Union an kinsmen can do a tremendous amount of good. Lawton’s request for transfer which has now been placed, in writing comes before the Everton directors at their meeting tomorrow night but whether they will make a decision or not is purely a matter for conjecture. There are a dozen and one points to weigh in the balance, I could have told you about this meeting some days ago, but refused to break a confidence. One spot of Everton good news is that Alex Stevenson, wonder Irish international forward expects to be home from India before Christmas. Another traveller returning home this week will be Mr. Billy McConnell.
Joe Mercer England’s captain, was the man who more than any other, paved the way for Everton’s grand 2-0 victory at Deepdale. In the unaccustomed position of centre half, Joe dominated the game and refused to be ruffled by Preston’s repeated forward changes. The game was brimming with good football, with Everton always the little bit better and move fertile for ideas. Alf Fielding the new professional had a notable debut, carving out innumerable openings and always operating on a constructive note. Wainwright too, was splendid, and Albert Johnson was a outside right. Boyes seemed happier back at outside left, and Lawton led the attack well despite sistent “policing.” A brilliant defence and two progressive wing half-backs operating around the Mercer hub made a splendid all round team thoroughly deserving the win per Wainwright’s header and Mercer penalty conversion –his second this season. Definitely this was Mercer’s match.
LOW-DOWN ON THE FIELDING BUSINESS
September 10, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Everton Did Nothing Underhand
Allegations are made in print in several quarters this morning that Charlton have had a “raw deal,” from Everton over the signing of Walter Fielding, and that they are demanding a thorough investigation into the whole matter. Let me give you the low-down on the whole business with authoritative statements from both sides. First of all, get it clear that Fielding was a greed-lance entirely, free to nobody with complete freedom of action, and that Everton have done nothing in the slightest degree underhanded. That is not their way of doing football business. I had a talk with Jimmy Seed, Charlton’s manager, this morning. This is what he told me; - “We have no complaint against Everton in the slightest degree! Definitely not. We do not claim we have had a raw deal, because we had no pull on the player.” Mr. Seed went further than that. He told me that after Fielding joined the Army he heard nothing of him until last season, and that he had not been on Charlton’s books since 1939. Yet there is one angle, which does not concern Everton in the slightest degree and is also outside the player’s orbit, which has caused Charlton some concern. This is what they are communicating to the League. Their letter went off this morning, and will be before the Management Committee on Thursday. Whether any action will be taken or even can be taken, I don’t pretend to say, but Charlton are justified in bringing it to official notice. And now let Mr. Theo Kelly take the stand, although what I’ve already said makes Everton’s position clear. “The idea of the League investigating Fielding signing leaves, the board and myself some cold,” he said. “We have done nothing in the slightest degree underhanded. Fielding chose to come to Everton entirely of his own free will. One reason he signed for us was because when in Italy, he was under Major Jack Sharp, son of the late Jack Sharp, the former Everton director. Major Sharp was the first to recommend Fielding to us, and he asked the player to give very serious consideration to our invitation. “We did not try to persuade him in any way, but left him to make his own decision. I think this was one of the things that impressed him. He also had an opportunity to judge for himself during the trip to Scotland last month just what sort of a club this is and the sort of company he would be in, and he was favourably impressed. So that’s that. Now you know. Just one further line. Fielding has returned to his unit and will not be available for Wednesday’s League “Derby.”
Everton’s game with Preston North End was also below anticipated standard, savouring more of the end of the season than the beginning. Preston were well beaten, however, Everton being superior in all departments. They put more snap into their work and did what Preston seemed incapable of doing –finished off their attacks with something to give goalkeeper Fairbrother a spot of employment. Secret of Everton’s success was their sound and stylish defence, in which Joe Mercer was the guiding star. England’s captain; playing at centre half was the outstanding man on the field, confident and sure, and never hurried in everything he did and always making wise use of the ball, seeking to bring his attack into operation every time he got rid of it. He was an object lesson and with sound men alongside him Preston’s attacks were repeatedly “throttled” before they got a chance of testing Burnett. Fielding gave a good display, producing some clever and stylish football, and promised still greater things when he has become more accustomed to the men alongside him. He was naturally a little strange to begin with. He had, however, the right ideas about serving up the ball to Tommy Lawton, but Everton’s leader, with visions of Saturday’s international in front of him, was naturally taking no unnecessary risks, especially in view of his recent leg injury and took things much more sedately than normally does. Wainwright had a good day, and took his goal in splendid fashion –Mercer got the other from a penalty –but on the whole, the main honours went to the visiting defence.
THE LAWTON CASE
September 12, 1945. The Evening Express
Everton supporters will be delighted to know that the club directors have made no final decision regarding the request from Tommy Lawton, their international centre forward to be placed on the transfer list. It may be a couple of weeks before anything definite is done. The directors had before them last night Lawton’s written request for a change, and decided that Lawton should attend the next meeting of the directors to discuss the position with them I think this is a splendid idea for it will enable the air to be cleared and it gives hope that there will be no parting. This “get together” may not be for a couple of weeks, for Lawton goes to Ireland tomorrow for matches on Saturday and Monday and on his return he has military duties at Oswestry to fulfil.
LIVERPOOL JUST WIN FIRST PACE-TIME “DERBY.”
September 13, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
Liverpool 2, Everton 1
Liverpool scored their first home victory of the season at Anfield last evening against Everton by 2-1 in a game which produced high-powered football from start to finish. The 25,446 spectators were treated to thrills and exciting in such rapid succession that, at times one could hardly keep pace with them and the game was as far removed from last Saturday’s exhibition as one could imagine. The first half was fought out at such a hectic speed that it seemed a certainty the second portion must pale by comparison. Instead it was even more tense, and the players stuck the punishing pace in remarkable fashion. Liverpool deserved their victory because they were always ready to found off their speedy and sparkling approach work with a shot, whereas Everton more stylish and studious in their methods were prone to waste time and opportunities in the penalty area by excessive close passing. In a match to productive of excellent football it seem somewhat invidious to stingle out individuals. All were good but some were better than others, and more excelled Liddell for speed, ball control and terrific shooting, before he gave Liverpool the lead at the 41st minute he had electrified the crowd three times by brilliant individual efforts and with a bit of luck would have had more goals to his credit. Burnett managed to get his hands to the shot which scored, but such was the strength of it that he was powerless to turn it outside the net. Just before this Boyes had hit Liverpool’s woodwork with a shot of equal power, but not quite the same unerring direction.
Liddell’s was the only goal up to the interval but half-way the second half Wyles equalised for Everton from a penalty for hands against Westby. It seemed to me that this was a case where the referee might have given the player the benefit of the doubt. I though it definitely a case of ball to hand, as Westby ducked and tried to get out of the way of a fierce drive by Makin. Liverpool crowded on heavy pressure in the closing stages without being able to get the better of the strong Everton defence until five minutes from the end, when Welsh’s persistence in following up a half-chance upset the visiting rearguard and Shannon nipped in to get a rather fortuitous winning goal. Liddell and Welsh were Liverpool’s most effective wing, for Balmer did not come to his best until late on. Shannon was a keen trier all the time. Outstanding in the home rearguard was Easdale who not only defended brilliantly but had constructive ideas and was not afraid to try them out. The backs were excellent, and so were the wing halves, and the same goes for Everton’s rearguard, in which Bell did very well, considering it was his first senior appearance for so many years. Both goalkeepers were tip-top and made many brilliant –saves though Hobson once or twice was inclined to be a little shakiness. Boyes was the bright star of the Everton attack. He is having a new lease of life at inside left, and was the mainspring of the front line. Wyles was a real worrier, upsetting the opposition by his sheer persistency. Wainwright had bright ideas, and Boyes and Makin improved after a slow start. Liverpool; Hobson, goal; Westby and Gulliver, backs; Kaye, Easdale, and Pillings, half-backs; Taylor, Balmer, Shannon, Welsh and Liddell, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Bell, and Watson, half-backs; Bond, Wainwright, Wyles, Boyes and Makin, forwards. Referee; Mr. E.W. Baker (Manchester).
EVERTON RESERVES 2 LIVERPOOL RESERVES 0
September 13, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
The reserves team match in the afternoon was also an excellent exhibition. Everton winning 2-0 through goals scored by Jones (F.). Liverpool Reserves played with ten men for 85 minutes, losing Pons (goalkeeper) with a damaged cartilage in the first few minutes in spite of this they did the major portion of the attacking and were unlucky to lose.
September 13, 1945. The Evening Express
At Anfield last night the Reds just pulled one “out of the bag” to defeat Everton 2-1 in the last five minutes and with the light fading fast, I was not the only one among the 25,446 watchers who had become reconciled to a draw when Manager Mr. George Kay made the move which brought in its wake success. It was no reflection on the play of young Shannon when he was moved from centre forward to outside right, but merely in Mr. Kay’s scheme of things to upset a solid, unrelenting Everton rearguard. It worked. Yes, and it was Shannon who got the winning goal aided by the fact that Everton, for once and once only, failed to clear a ball which should have been in the crowd seconds before. The persistent Welsh took full advantage and a short inside pass gave Shannon the opening he snapped up early. The goal followed right on a long period of Everton pressure and direct from a long clearance by Gulliver who had tacked a goal-thirsty Wainwright. Wainwright, as a matter of fact, was lying on the ground “out” when the goal was scored. Such was the drama of the finale to a match packed with incident, productive of some joyous manoeuvre, and with Everton a trifle unfortunate to lose. Had the score remained at 1-1 justice would have been done. The characteristic snap goal on a breakaway did the trick for the Reds.
Clash In Styles
This was a veritable clash in styles, for whereas Everton –in a tradition manner, progressed by the short, cute pass and the players moving to the open space with such facility, Liverpool kept it more open flung wide their passes and as a consequence, always looked more menacing by the very speed of their progress. The Blues had more of the game territorially but never did they look as dangerous as Liverpool. Everton can blame themselves for missing many golden opportunities –the sort which had they fallen to the lot of Liverpool, would have been snapped up avidly. The one live Everton marksman was Wally Boyes –his rocket shot which came back off the bar was the best effort of the evening –but all five Liverpool forwards came into the category of marksmen. Wainwright of course was always a potential scorer, and I rated him the best creator of the game. On this form Wainwright is more than justifying the unshakable faith Secretary Mr. Theo Kelly has always had in him. I would go so far as to tip Wainwright as a shining star of their future. Everton looked better in midfield because of their wing half backs, Bentham and Watson who so delicately exploited the short ball to their inside forwards and made rhythmic move to position for the return before rebuilding kaye and Pilling favoured the long thrust and so the two Liverpool inside forwards found themselves covering a lot of ground without getting the slip through they sought Liddell was, in my opinion, the greatest player of the 22, and in stating that it does not detract from the brilliant work of Burnett and Hobson or the sound pivotal work of Easdale and Bell. It is my considered opinion that Liddell is one of the greatest if not the greatest all round forward in football. Unpredictable like a flash of lightning and the essence of versatility Liddell at 13st, has everything. Liddell might have had two goals before he nipped through to gave the Reds the lead just on the interval, thanks to a Taylor offering, and it was not until 67 minute that Wyles equalised from a penalty. After that it ran Everton’s way until Kaye made his switch. Jackson and Greenhalgh were more reliable than the Liverpool backs because they refused to be drawn out of position in fact until that fatal hesitancy there was no error in Everton’s rear divisions. Bell revealed potentialities as a centre half and Everton need worry about untrusting this erstwhile centre-forward with the pivotal task, for Bob knows the safety way I liked Shannon, whose promise emphasises that right here on Merseyside we have the stars of the future. Shannon kept Everton defence rather on edge, in fact, the entire Liverpool attack played in a manner which always promised goals and certainly gave us glorious thrills in one of the cleanest “Derby” games imaginable.
Torry Gillick, Everton’s Scottish international forward, expects to be able to play against Preston North End at Goodison Park –his first appearance of the season for the Blues.
Lowe stands by in case of a slip-up in plans; either Catterick or Wyles will lead the forwards, and Humphreys returns to centre-half. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Gillick, (or Lowe), Wainwright, Catterick (or Wyles), Boyes, Makin.
Everton Reserves (v. Bolton Wanderers at Burnden); J.A. Jones; Jones (JE), Anderson; Cookson, Curwen, R.L. Doyle; Nolan, Hill, Bell, Rothwell, Kenton (or Lyon).
DERBY THRILLS GALORE
September 18, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
High-Powered Anfield Game
Liddell and Boyes Sparkle
Thrills...frills...spills...acrobatics...speed and what you will, we got ‘em all in overflowing measure in the first post-war meeting between Liverpool and Everton at Anfield last night. Honesty and candour, compelled me to “slate” Liverpool on Monday after their shocking display against Bury. To-day I take off my battered bowler to them and to Everton for as thrilling and exciting a game as anybody could wish to see. Maybe it wasn’t exactly a 100 per cent “classic,” and maybe it did show up an occasional weakness, but I’m not going to stress them after such a high-powered display. My tribute is unmarred by any pernickety quibbling because everybody put his heart into his work and nearly pulled it out by the rocks to give of his best, and that’s good enough for me. If there were any liverpoolians who stayed away because of Saturday’s disappointment –well that’s their funeral. They missed an great match. I warned you it would be just like Liverpool to stage a Lord major’s show after Saturday’s “dust-cart.” And they did. There’s nothing like a tilt at their Everton rivals to bring out all the Irish contrariness of Liverpool. They sink to the level of lowly opponents, and rise to the heights against more worthy foemen. And Everton in truth were worthy formen. Judged from the point of view of artistry and subtlety the Blues were the better side. But from the standpoint of downright directness, shooting ability and “there’s-the-goal-let’s-have-a-go-at-it. Liverpool had it all the time.
They produced three shots for every one by Everton, and that’s why I don’t agree, though I respect their opinion, with those who try to tell me that Everton were unlucky to lose. I enjoyed their stylish play, I admired their grand defence, but the truth is that Liverpool were infinitely more dangerous whenever they got inside the penalty area –or even ten yards outside it if the ball was at Liddell’s feet –and always looked the more likely scorers. The first half was a real snorter. At half-time I said; “They can’t keep this up.” I was wrong though how the players stuck the punishing pace as they did beats me. If they can produce this on rations and spare-time training, or sometimes no training at all, what’s it going to be like when full-time training, massage and what not comes back? Those of us who sit facing the centre line will need rubber necks to cope with the backwards and forwards fluctuations. It’s out of place in this report chronologically but let me mention the last goal to give those who weren’t there an idea of the terrific end-to-end fluctuations. Everton had swept down on the home goal like a tornado. Gulliver nipped into the breach and belted the ball past the half-way line, upsetting Wainwright in doing so. While Hobson was running out of goal to assist Wainwright and the spectators were calling on the referee to stop play. Welsh was fastening on the ball at the other end. He ran twenty yards got the defence in a tangle, and then tapped the ball to Shannon, who, having had the sense to come right into the middle, had the honour of getting the winning goal. From the attack at one end to the scoring of a goal at the other couldn’t have taken more than ten seconds. Wainwright was still on the ground in the Liverpool goalmouth when the ball was in the net at the Spion Kop end.
Liddell’s Great Work
Liddell excelled himself, which is saying a mouthful. He was like greased lighting every time he got away and his opening goal was a gem. He must have been clocking even time at the moment he-hilt-it. How he timed it so perfectly at such a speed was amazing. Some of his earlier shots were almost as good. Tommy Lawton at his best couldn’t have improved on them. Pity Willie Sloan, Liverpool’s chief Scottish scout, wasn’t there to see his protégé’s great display. He was the man, who first tipped Liverpool off about Liddell, who’s going to be one of the biggest noises in post-war football, or I’m a poor prophet. Next to Liddell I liked the excellent display of Easdale, who has definitely come to stay and will be a serious challenger to Laurie Hughes, if he maintains the standard. I admired his refusal to stick slavishly, to the third-back game. He had the courage to go up in the hope of changing defence into attack. That’s something I frequently pray for with modern centre halves. But it demands complete understanding and team-work in the defence. Maybe you don’t agree with me –especially if you’re a “Blue” but I thought Everton were lucky dippers in the bran-tub when they got their penalty. It looked to me as though Westby did all he could in a split second to get out of the way of Makin’s pile driver, and that it was definitely a case of “ball to hand.” Anyhow Everton accepted the grit thankfully and Wyles coolly placed spot kick put them level half-way through the second half.
The Kay Touch Was O.K.
Then came another of these George Kay touches to give Liverpool their first home victory in four games. The Reds’ manager saw that Shannon had run himself out through sheer pluck and persistency. So passed the word for the youngster to go on the wing and Welsh into the middle. The change brought its due reward when Shannon as already described got the winning goal five minutes from the finish. If it was a rather lucky one it, only balanced the Everton penalty. And talking about penalties, I thought Everton deserved such an award for more than one they got when Gulliver pushed Bond over as he was about to shoot. The defences on either side were excellent. Both goalkeepers made some brilliant saves; both pairs of backs were sound as the Bank of England, and the halves did all that anybody could have wished for. Considering Bob bell has been out of first-class football for so long I reckon he put up a great show. But the man of the Everton side was Walter Boyes the “Peter Pan” of Goodison. Walter wears amazingly well has got a new lease on his football life since taking over at inside left, and did the work of two men without showing any signs of fatigue. His shot which hit the woodwork in the first half was on a par with Liddell’s best. Bentham likewise had a grand match at right half, here he was not only a sound defender but was live to the value of taking the ball through on his own when occasion offered. We didn’t see the best of Tony Bond who was a long time setting to the game. Wainwright did well, and Wyles worried the defence for the full ninety minutes by his “bulldozer” doing.
Gillick May Play
Everton include Gillick in their probables for the home game with Preston. Mr. Theo Kelly is doing his best to get him down, but the chances are not too promising; Team; Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Gillick or Lowe, Wainwright, Catterick, or Wyles, Boyes, Makin.
September 14, 1945. The Evening Express
It is with some degree of confidence that I look to Everton to bring off their first double of the season, for they won brilliantly at Preston 2-0 last week, and their form against Liverpool on Wednesday was encouraging enough in all conscience. It is true the Blues will not quite so strongly represented as they were at Deepdale and I am sorry that the home debut of Alf Fielding has to be postponed. However the possible may probable appearance of Gillick is ample compensation for Torry is one of football’s greatest personalities and as much admired at Ibrox Park as at Goodison. Torry’s appearance for Everton during the war have been too few and far between to suit the supporters but we appreciate him all the more when he is here. Wainwright is able to play again and this vastly improved inside right will make Torry the ideal partner. Either Catterick or Wyles will lead the forwards, and Jack Humphreys returns to centre-half to carry on where Joe Mercer left off last week. Stan Bentham remains at right half where he did so brilliantly against Liverpool. Preston bring some rare favourites in Jimmy McIntosh and George Mutch, so long Everton guest. Jimmy Dougal, Fairbrother and Scott, but if Everton will bring just a little more incisiveness into their finishing then I think they will succeed in a game starting at three o’clock. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Gillick or Lowe, Wainwright, Catterick, or Wyles, Boyes, Makin. Preston; Fairbrother; Robertson, Scott; Hamilton, Summerbee, Mansley; Wharton, Mutch, Dougal, Iddon, McIntosh.
EVERTON AT HOME
September 14, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
After playing four away matches on the run, Everton make a welcome return before their own supporters at Goodison Park tomorrow, when Preston are the visitors, and Everton hope to include Torry Gillick in their side. It is doubtful whether Gillick will be able to make the journey though. He is still on vital shipyard work at Glasgow and is not likely to be a “regular” at Goodison for some time. The best he can manage at the moment will be an occasional visit, and that will be difficult though Mr. Theo Kelly will make every effort to bring him before Goodison followers. Glasgow Rangers would like to keep Torry up North for good. He has been playing in great style, and they do not relish his departure. The absence of Lawton and Mercer, playing for England against Ireland, at Belfast means changes in the side compared with that which won at Deepdale last week. Humphreys takes over the pivotal position, and at centre forward it rests between Catterick and Wyles. Boyes brightest star of the side at Anfield on Wednesday is again inside left, with Makin on the extreme flank. If Everton can reproduce the same subtlety and canny positioning that they did against Liverpool, add to it a bigger dash of first-time shooting, and let the ball do just a little more of the work for them, instead of too much close passing, then they ought to complete the double at Preston’s expense. Preston make three changes, involving five positions, compared with last week. Shankly is not available, Robinson is at right back in place of Simpson, and Wharton outside right for Hunter. The visitors have a mixed side of youngsters and experienced players with the latter mainly comprising the attack. Robertson and Scott, the backs are two pre-war juniors who have graduated through the war years. The first named went to Deepdale, as a 15-year-old lad from Arbroath, and was called up for the Army only a month ago. He gets his first leave this week-end. Mansley another 21-years-old, has been assisting Queen’s of the South for some time, and Iddon’s good work in recent games in the Central League side earns him another run in the first team. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Humphreys, Watson; Gillick of Lowe, Wainwright, Catterick, or Wyles, Boyes, Makin. Preston; Fairbrother; Robertson, Scott; Hamilton, Summerbee, Mansley; Wharton, Mutch, Dougal, Iddon, McIntosh.
GOALMOUTH TANGLES IN GOODISON GAME
September 15, 1945. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton’s Close Play Helps the Preston Defenders
Stirring Finish to a Draw
This was a curiously patchy game at Goodison. Excellent play was sandwiched between spells of mediocre stuff. There were periods when the approach work was brilliant, but the finishing of both sides was weak, and the defence came out with chief honours. In the closing stages, Fairbrother stood between Everton and victory in gallant fashion. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Bell and Watson, half-backs; Lowe, Wainwright, Wyles, Boyes and Makin, forwards. Preston North End;- Fairbrother, goal; Simpson and Scott, backs; Hamilton, Summerbee, and Mansley, half-backs; Wharton, Mutch, Dougal, Iddon and McIntosh, forwards. Referee; Mr. J.N. Brown, (Aughton). Everton had Lowe at outside right as Gillick was unable to make the journey from Glasgow. Bell at centre half, and Wyles in the middle. Although Everton started in lively fashion and Lowe early put in a shot which Fairbrother was thankful to be able to trip over the bar, it was Preston who drew first blood. North End were a goal up at the end of 7 minutes, Iddon being the scorer. There did not look to be any particular danger when Wharton put over a long centre which Burnett left his goal to collect, but unfortunately he collided with Jackson and the ball ran loose to Iddon who very deliberately placed it into the far corner of the net. Jackson had to receive attention before the game could be restarted. There was nearly a second goal two minutes later when good work by Wharton and Mutch was finished off by a shot from Mutch, which struck the crossbar.
No Way Through
Wyles delighted with a canny sideways flick which gave Wainwright a scoring chance, but the inside man’s shot, though full of power, had not the right direction. Lowe took too long making up his mind whether to shoot or centre, and was finally crowded out. A spell of Everton pressure had North End penned up for some minutes without Fairbrother being called upon top deal with anything troublesome. The North End defence, covered up well and the home forwards, try as they would, could not find a way through. Several shots were blocked, one from Boyes in particular looking to be the most dangerous. Preston progressed by some canny footwork and long sweeping passes, nothing being better than an upward move in which McIntosh, Iddon, and Mutch carried the ball almost from one end of the field to the other by the quickest and most direct method. Preston had fortune with their first goal; as that it was only fitting that a spot of luck should enable Everton to balance matters, which they did when Wyles equalised from a penalty after 18 minutes. The penalty arose when Simpson brought down Boyes as he was cutting in from the left, but it seemed to me that the Everton man was well offside when he received the ball and that play should have been stopped before the penalty offence. Preston certainly were of this opinion and showed it by their protest. Boyes served up one of his inimitable startling runs which brought him the centre of the field to outside right, where he delivered a pass which Lowe headed wide.
The Preston goal area took on something of the aspect of a casualty clearing station, when first Wainwright was spread-eagle on the ground, and a moment later the same player and Simpson were again “laid out,” and received attention. The standard of play early on had been high, but had now fallen off, so that the game was characterised more by hearty and honest endeavour rather than any classical touches, though these did come in occasional flashes from Boyes for Everton, and Iddon for Preston. Wharton’s centres were always a source of danger to the home side though Burnett on most occasions came well out to cut them off from Preston’s inside forwards.
In one instance he lost contract with the ball after catching it, and only a ninny intervention by Bell averted another goal. Preston who had earlier altered their forward formation, Dougal and McIntosh changing places now reverted to the original order, and Dougal came into the picture with a weaving run which was not finished off in appropriate manner. Everton were aggressive in the closing stages of the first half and a few minutes before the interval the Preston goal had a very narrow escape when Lowe hit the upright after receiving a grand pass from Bentham. Unfortunately for Everton there was nobody up to meet the rebound. Wainwright beat four men with a cut and weaving run, only to lose the ball before he could get in his shot. Everton were not indeed rounding off their approach work with the shots they might have delivered and Fairbrother was unduly troubled. Half-time; Everton 1, Preston N.E. 1. The second half started with Preston making a hot attack, which faded out when Jackson affected a timely clearance. Bell held up Dougal with a dainty bit of back-heel work, following which Wyles was crowded out in the Preston goalmouth, and Boyes sliced a shot towards the corner flag. Summerbee and Fairbrother, collided just as Burnett and Jackson had done in the first half, but, fortunately for Preston, not with the same consequences. An abortive corner was all Everton got from it. Iddon, Wharton, and Mutch dovetailed with a nice move and then came a quick-witted save by Burnett from McIntosh after all five Preston forwards had a hand in the attack.
Boyes was the live-wire of Everton’s front line, and was putting in a tremendous amount of work without getting adequate results. The home side’s close passing was playing right into the hands of Preston’s determined defence. Everton’s defence also deserve credit for the stalwart way in which it stood up to the opposing attack at a time when Preston look as though they might get on top. Jackson and Greenhalgh came to the rescue several times, and the rearguard was covering up very nicely. Watson and Bentham also did their part nobly. The home goal had a narrow escape when Mutch hit the foot of the post, following which Burnett earned the applause o the 25,000 crowd when he tipped a hot shot from McIntosh over the bar. Dougal went close with a header from another peach of a centre by Wharton and at this stage Preston were definitely having the better of the argument.
Everton had an inspired spell in which they swarmed round the Preston goal for fully ten minutes without being able to get the better of the visiting defence, in which Fairbrother and Summerbee were outstanding. Everton hammered away for all they were worth and their efforts were well worthy of a goal.
Wyles went close with two attempts which Fairbrother made to look more simple than they were by his intelligent positioning. Lowe had one good shot and Wainwright would have been a certain scorer with a fierce drive had it not struck Mansley en route. Then Bentham had a go the best effort of the lot, only to find Fairbrother once more in the right spot at the right time. This was a hectic period. Everton 1, Preston North End 1.
BOLTON R V EVERTON R
September 15, 1945. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton included the 16-years-old centre forward Wright, but although the vistors forced the pace for a time, it was the Wanderers who made the first real effort to score. Casey broke through but screwed the ball wide of an open goal. Thompson the only Bolton professional, defended well. Casey scored just before half-time. Casey scored for the Wanderers just before half-time.
Half-time; Bolton Res 1, Everton Reserves 0
Everton were better balanced and showed cleverer footwork, but their vigorous tackling led to several free kicks. Casey scored for the Wanderers. Final; -Bolton W Res 2. Everton Reserves 0
S’port Res v Everton “A”
There was a hectic opening, Corkhill ran through to give Everton the lead with 30 seconds, but Southport hit back with vigour, and nine minutes later had scored three times through Gregory (2) and Hitchen. Midway through the half Underhill added a fourth with a terrific shot. Shore, outstanding half back, netted a fifth on the interval. Half-time; Southport Res 5, Everton “A” 1.
EVERTON DRAW WITH PRESTON
September 17, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 1, Preston North End 1
A Fair Result
Justice was done when Everton and Preston shared the points at Goodison Park on Saturday, but if the home side had let the ball do the work for them, instead of hugging it so close, they might have gained the maximum reward. This was a game in which good was sandwiched between a lot that was not. It had clear-cut periods in both halves in which first one side had its spells of superiority, then the other. But the main honours of the day went to the respective defences. Sometimes they were cool, calculated and confident sometimes they were a trifle jittery, but always they had the measure of the opposing attacks. Preston had the better ideas of forward progress. They swung the ball about more freely than Everton which meant that the home defence had the more difficult task, but they did it well and competently and showed good understanding in their covering up moves. It was bad luck for Everton that their one big misunderstanding resulted in a presentation goal to Iddon, who was given the easiest of chances when Jackson and Burnett collided in the first few minutes. Everton had their consolation when Wyles scored from a penalty for an offence on Boyes. That was the end of the day’s scoring, but it would not have been had Everton possessed a marksman capable of making a first-time shot of power and direction.
Their forwards spoiled much nice approach work by excessive elaboration which gave the opposing defence time to close its ranks and meant that players were crowed out of their shots blocked. In addition to their sound rear guard. Everton had good wing halves in Bentham and Watson, the former of whom looks like making as good a half-back as a forward. Lowe did quite well and will do better when he gets his centres over more strongly. Boyes and Wainwright were the best of the attack though the line, as a whole lacked punch in front of goal. Preston’s best forwards were Iddon and Wharton; the latter’s centres were all of the copybook order. Their defence, was solid and in the closing stages Fairbrother made some clever saves at time when Everton looked likely to pull the game out of the fire. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Bell and Watson, half-backs; Lowe, Wainwright, Wyles, Boyes and Makin, forwards. Preston North End;- Fairbrother, goal; Simpson and Scott, backs; Hamilton, Summerbee, and Mansley, half-backs; Wharton, Mutch, Dougal, Iddon and McIntosh, forwards. Referee; Mr. J.N. Brown, (Aughton).
• Liverpool lost 2-1 at Bury. Nieuwenhuy for Liverpool and Greenhalgh (2) for Bury
• England beat Ireland 1-0, at Windsor Park, Belfast, Mercer and Lawton playing for England, Lawton scoring the only goal.
LAWTON HOPES OF TALK WITH DIRECTORS
September 17, 1945. The Evening Express
Tommy Lawton the Everton and England centre-forward intends making every possible effort to get back from Ireland by tomorrow to enable him to attend the evening meeting of the Everton directors, and discuss the question for transfer is to be granted. It may not be possible, but Tom may manage a crossing tonight. Lawton said to me that he wants to get the whole thing settled one way or another as speedily as possible, but even if a final decision is not reached tomorrow, Lawton is expected to play for the Blues against Liverpool at Goodison Park on Wednesday evening. Joe Mercer also will be there. Lawton laughs at suggestion that he may accept an offer to play in Eire. “It’s just another fairy tale, said Tommy to me. Why my whole life is trapped up in English football, and I would never even consider leaving it.
NOT SO GOOD
September 17, 1945. The Evening Express
There were some exciting moments at Goodison Park on Saturday, where Preston North End forced a 1-1 draw, but taken all through it was almost like “blind scouse –no meat in it. There was much in the splendid play to please the discriminate because the work of the wing half backs was so good but the goalmouth thrills; the joy of the quick shot and the fluent, rhythmic attack, which stirs the blood were missing. One of the reasons was that the defences were too good for the attacks, but even that did not account for the paucity of shots. Only in the final stages did Everton really come into the picture as marksmen, and for most part delayed that fatal fraction of a second to gave a defender chance to intercept. And the Preston defenders were masters at quick recovery. Not often have I seen so many winning tackles from behind. Had Everton finished with the conviction they showed in approach they would have won, for they combined with better effect and had much more of the game territorially. North End were spasmodic in attack, being content to rely on the sudden breakaway, hoping to catch the Blues “on one leg.” It almost came off once or twice too. Major thrills were crammed into the opening, during which Iddon scored a gift for Preston and Wyles levelled from the spot, and in the last few minutes.
Give Me Bentham
Stan Bentham was one of the outstanding successes in the Everton side –the epitome of diligence and purposeful football. A side with eleven players like Bentham simply could not miss. Stan is making a brilliant right half, and his knowledge of inside right play enabled him to give Eddie Wainwright the right sort of working material on which to build. And Wainwright responded magnificently. In fact, the more I see of him the more I like him. Wainwright was the best forward in the game, and that is no reflection of Wally Boyes, who was at times the life and soul of the party. Lowe, too, did some good work early on and Wyles was vastly improved. I do wish Cecil had been more eager to “have a go” though. Bell handled the pivotal job well, and apart from a couple of early errors Jackson and Greenhalgh were sound in front if Burnett who made no error. Pity that Burnett and Jackson did not shout a word of co-operation during the scoring of the Preston goal. When they collided it made it easy for Iddon. Makin was better than at Anfield and Watson in his quiet manner, was again a vital cog in a machine which was always mis-firing on a couple of cylinders. I could appreciate Mr. Jim Taylor reluctance to discuss the young Preston right back, Simpson, for obviously here is a player in whom Preston want no outside interest taken. Simpson is good. More than 25,000 spectators left the ground with the feeling that Everton had not made the most of their opportunities.
LIKE THE CURATE’S EGG AT GOODISON
September 17, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
A Mixed Grill
The game between Everton and Preston was a curious mixture of attractive spells of play alternating with much that was mediocre, with a draw doing adequate justice all round. Both sides enjoyed spells of dominance, with Preston at their best in the first quarter of an hour, when they made quick progress by long sweeping passes and found their men with unerring accuracy, and again halfway through the second half. In between these periods Everton had their spasms of superiority. The Blues certainty finished up the game the more strongly, and only some splendid goalkeeping by Fairclough in the last ten minutes kept Everton from winning. During this period, and also during one five minute spell in the first half, the home forwards and wing halves swarmed round the Preston goal, almost falling over one another in their eagerness to score. But the ball ran badly for them. Five times out of six the Preston defence either crowded them out before a shot was tried or blocked it when it was attempted. Had Everton opened out play a little more, instead of slavishly attacking to their close passing methods, the story might have been different. Their tactics tended to consolidate rather than spread-eagle the opposing defence, which invariably had time to cover up when danger threatened. Everton’s defences had the bigger task of the two, for it was opposing an attack, which swept the ball about more and in which the forwards tried frequent interchanges of position. Yet it was more than equal to all the demands made on it, and earned praise for a very solid performance. The one misunderstanding of which it was guilty gave Preston a gift goal. Iddon being the scorer when Burnett and Jackson had collided. It was poetic justice that Everton should equalise from a rather doubtful penalty, netted by Wyles. There was no doubt about the offence when Simpson grassed Boyes, but my reading of it was that Boyes should have been pulled up for off-side before the foul was committed. Both goals had narrow escapes, Mutch twice hitting the woodwork for Preston and Lowe once for Everton. Everton’s wing halves were good, but their forwards were not sufficiently together as a line. Wyles met with little success against Summerbee, and Boyes and Wainwright were the main danger. Preston’s best in attack were Wharton, who put over a succession of excellent centres, and Iddon, who did a lot of clever work in quiet fashion. Their defence all round was sound.
FIELDING’S SIGNING INQUIRY
September 19, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
By John Peel.
The Football League will hold an inquiry in London next week into the registration of A. Fielding as a professional by Everton F.C. Everton and Fielding have been instructed to attend the inquiry. Fielding was signed by Everton two weeks ago after having been sought by Southern club and following his success in Services football in Italy. Mr. Fred Howarth, secretary of the Football League, said last night; “It is merely an inquiry into the registration of Fielding and all parties concerned have been instructed to attend. No one should read into too the matter that there is anything against Everton.”
For the second week in succession Merseyside football enthusiastic have a mid-week clash between Everton and Liverpool for these rivals meet age in tonight’s at Goodison Park in the first leg of Round 1 of the Lancashire Senior Cup. Everton are in the happy position of hoping to be able to field one of their strongest sides. Both the Scottish internationals wingers Gillick and Caskie will be in the team and Lawton will lead the attack if he arrives back from Ireland in time. At half-back Mercer is expected to appeal at left half with Humphreys as pivot and Watson on the right flank. In the event of Lawton and Mercer being absent Grant and Wyles will fill their positions. Liverpool who will have an unchanged defence have doubts about their attack; Liddell and Fagan and possibly Nieuwenhuys will be absent, but Welsh the Charlton and England forward is available and expected to play. The final selection of their side, however, will not be known until just before the game; Teams; Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Gillick, Bentham, Lawton, Boyes, Caskie. Liverpool; (from); Hobson; Westby, Gulliver; Jones, Easdale, Kaye; Pillings, Campbell, Shannon, Taylor, Welsh, Balmer, Paterson, Hulligan.
As Lawton had not returned from Belfast last evening the Everton F.C. board meeting were unable to further discuss the players request to be placed on the transfer list. Consquentently the matter had to be left over until a later meeting, when the player will be able to attend.
Mercer To Captain Army Side
Q.M.S J. Mercer, the Everton and England captain will lead the Army X1 (North) against Army X1 (South) in the first of this season’s Army representative games at Darlington next Wednesday.
CASKIE CERTAIN FOR GOODISON DERBY
September 18, 1945. The Evening Express
Jimmy Caskie, Everton’s brilliant Scottish international forward is a certain starter in tomorrows evening’s Lancashire Senior Cup “Derby” with Liverpool at Goodison Park. This is grand news following the disappointment over Gillick, who could not get off morning work to play here.
One’s sympathies automatically go to the team builders when mid-week matches are due for it is difficult to secure the releases of Service players, and those who are working often find it hard to get away in time. Both Mr. Theo Kelly of Everton and Mr. George Kay, of Liverpool, do their utmost to co-operate and give us a team some hours before there may be several enforced changes before the teams take the field. Mr. Kay has to wait until this evening’s meeting of his directors who will no doubt want to say something following the defeat at Bury. However, Mr. Kay say that Don Welsh will be available to offset the loss of Liddell and Fagan, who have rejoined their units, and the possible absence of Nieuwenhuys, who was due to go back off leave today. In the Everton list we find the England captain, Joe Mercer, who is playing; so brilliantly this season, Tommy Lawton also returning from duty with England in Ireland. Jack Humphreys the North Wales product, and our old favourite, Jimmy McIntosh, of Preston North End who played against Everton on Saturday. The defensive is okay-as usual. With so much uncertainty about the teams it is hard to asses’ chances, but I anticipate a game as even as last week when Liverpool defeated the Blues 2-1 with five minutes to go. So it will be good stuff. The kick-off will be at six o’clock –and not a minute later, so please be early. Everton (from); Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson, Grant, Lowe; Bentham, Lawton, Wyles, Boyes, Caskie, McIntosh, Makin. Liverpool; (from) Hobson; Westby, Gulliver; Jones, Easdale, Kaye, Pillings; Campbell, Shannon, Taylor, Welsh, Balmer, Paterson, Hulligan.
‘LIVERTON’ SERIAL-CHAP 2
September 18, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Caskie a Certain Starter for Blues Tomorrow’s Cup-tie
Chapter Two in this month’s Everton-Liverpool serial takes place tomorrow evening at Goodison Park (six o’clock), when Jimmy Caskie will definitely play for Everton. No matter how often Everton and Liverpool line up, there is always a staunch and joys public to cheer them on, and tomorrow’s game should attract another big crowd. This season unlike the war, will not see the Lancashire Cup carrying League points. This time it is straight knock-out home-and-away business. Easy way out for me in these Liverton Derbies would be to say “wait and see” rather than attempt to forecast the winner. In any case the margin of superiority is so small that it may just as easily go one way as the other. If we get as satisfying a game tomorrow as we had at Anfield last week, I don’t care whether Reds or Blues finish on top, but if you want me to commit myself; them let me say I have learning to an Everton victory this time. This game is the first legg of the first round of the Lancashire Senior Cup. The return is at Anfield tomorrow week, thus making three meetings in fifteen days. The Blues probable side looks pretty strong on paper, for both Lawton and Mercer are likely starters, with Humphreys in the pivotal position. Mr. Theo Kelly tried to get both Gillick and Caskie down. The former cannot manage it, but Caskie can, and Everton advise me he is a definite starter. This is an added attraction to a game which was already alluring. Liverpool, like Everton will not be able to make their final selection until just before the game, when they see who has turned up. They know now, however, that Liddell and Fagan will not be available. No word has been received from Niuewenhuys, but Welsh is all right. The defence is pretty certain to be the same as against Bury. Teams chosen from; Everton (from); Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson, Grant, Lowe; Bentham, Lawton, Wyles, Boyes, Caskie, McIntosh, Makin. Liverpool; (from) Hobson; Westby, Gulliver; Jones, Easdale, Kaye, Pillings; Campbell, Shannon, Taylor, Welsh, Balmer, Paterson, Hulligan.
Jock Thomson, pre-war Everton skipper has got his “ticket.” After a short demonization leave, which he is now spending in Scotland, he will start his duties as Everton’s coach.
TONIGHT’S DERBY GAME.
September 19, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Everton will after all, have Torry Gillick in their side against Liverpool at Goodison Park tonight. Mr. Theo Kelly did not include him in the probables yesterday because he had no confirmation from the player, but Gillick arrived here last night. Caskie, also here, is likewise a definite starter, as is Joe Mercer, but there is a doubt whether Tommy Lawton will play, as he is not yet as thoroughly fit as he might be. He and Mercer arrived back in Liverpool at 8-30 this morning after leaving Belfast at 4 o’clock yesterday afternoon. This means that Everton will have seven of their pre-war championship side out, possibly eight and the team now reads;- Teams; Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Gillick, Bentham, Lawton, Boyes, Caskie.
Owing to Lawton’s inability to be at last night’s Everton board meeting, the question of his transfer request has had to be deferred to a later date.
As I anticipated the Football League are to hold an inquiry into the signing of professional forms of A.W. Fielding, the former Walthamstow Avenue amateur, inside forward, who joined has joined Everton. It takes place in London next week. I gave you the low-down on the business last week when I told you that Jimmy Seed, Charlton’s manager, had categorically denied to me any suggestion that Everton had given the London club a “raw deal” as had been alleged. Everton don’t do that sort of thing. They have nothing to fear from any inquiry, but obviously must be present as witnesses. Mr. Fred Howarth, the League secretary make this quite clear. “Nobody should read into the inquiry that there is anything against Everton, he said.”
September 19, 1945. The Evening Express
The Football league is to hold an inquiry in London next week into the circumstances of the registration as a professional of Alf Field, the inside-left, who signed for Everton a forth-night ago. Everton and Fielding have been instructed to attend the inquiry. Let me hasten to emphasize that there is no implication against Everton. This was pointed out to me by Mr. Fred Howarth, secretary of the Football league, with whom I spoke last night. Neither Mr. Howarth nor Mr. Theo Kelly, secretary of Everton, would divulge any details, but Mr. Howarth said to me; “No one should read into this matter that there is anything against Everton. There is no implication.” The League has decided to hold an inquiry into the registration of Fielding, and all parties concerned have been instructed to attend/.” I ask Mr. Howarth if he would tell me who were the other parties, but he said that he was not at liberty to give any other information. Several southern clubs hoped to secure Fielding, who was contacted by Mr. Kelly at his home in London in July on arrival from Italy, where he made such an impression in Service football. When Everton announced Fielding’s signing as a professional, Charlton Athletic stated that they would ask the League for an inquiry into the signing. Fielding having played for them as an amateur three years ago. Everton regard Fielding as an important capture, and apart from playing well in the match against Glasgow in August, Fielding gave a splendid exhibition for the Blues against Preston North End at Deepdale last Saturday week.
Everton will have out almost a pre-war team against Liverpool at Goodison Park this evening, in the Lancashire Cup-tie, and no fewer than six internationals are included. I told you yesterday that Jimmy Caskie was a certainty –he travelled from Scotland on the midnight train –and now I can tell you that Torry Gillick, the Blues other Scottish international is also a certain starter. Gillick arrived in Liverpool yesterday. Gillick hoped to play against Preston last Saturday and I announced that either he or Lowe would be at outside-right. Torry, however, could not get off Saturday morning work and so could not travel. The disappointment to the club followers was intense and Secretary Mr. Theo Kelly has received several letters complaining. The fault was not that of Everton, however, for everything possible was done to get Gillick here. The disappointment will be turned to joy this evening, and I hope that those whose were so upset over last Saturday will write to Everton and say “all is forgiven.” Another possible treat for this evening is the re-appearance of Joe Mercer and Tommy Lawton, the English internationals, who may be back from Ireland in time. Lawton has been granted leave to play, and Mr. Kelly is merely awaiting a confirmatory message from mercer. Should anything come unstuck regarding these two players Grant will deputise for Mercer and Wyles for Lawton. The Everton team is; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Gillick, Bentham, Lawton, Boyes, Caskie. You will gather the above that Lawton could not get back in time to attend last night’s meeting of the Everton directors and at there is no development in the “request” for transfer” serial.
LIVERPOOL’S GREAT RALLY TO DRAW WITH EVERTON
September 20, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
Everton 3, Liverpool 3
The meeting of Everton and Liverpool in the first round of the Lancashire Senior Cup at Goodison Park last night provided one of the most thrilling of the many exciting finishes which matches between these rivals have given us. It was a game of two distinct halves, with Everton much the better side in the first portion and Liverpool well on top in the second period, when Taylor and Jones changed places. Once Everton had established a three goal lead at the end of twenty four minutes, it looked as though they had the game well in their keeping, for they were playing brilliant football in every department, whereas the ball was running unkindly for Liverpool, who simply could not get going with their accustomed understanding and vigour. But, as so often happens where Everton are concerned a substantial lead proved their undoing. They slacked off in the second half, playing as though they had nothing to fear from the opposition. Their complacency was shaken a little when Liverpool had a penalty for hands against Mercer shortly after the resumption, but as Welsh missed from the spot Everton carried on their easy and nonchalant fashion. Then came the Liverpool avalanche, which brought three goals in seven minutes to put them on level terms, and from that point onwards Everton were fighting on the collar, starving hard against a side which had at last found its feet, and was showing a wonderful fighting spirit.
Everton Defence Falters
Everton’s defence, hitherto cool and confident, while not exactly going to pieces, became decidedly jittery and was glad to find relief by almost any means in the closing stages, when Liverpool piled on heavy pressure. Everton were handicapped by an injury to Lawton in the last ten minutes, but the damage had been done before that. Lawton’s old leg injury reassured itself when he made a terrific effort to get in a shot, and he finished the game hobbling painfully on the right wing with Gillick at centre forward. Everton playing delightful football in the first half were two goals in fifteen minutes both scored by Lawton. Liverpool were in error in not playing to the whistle when he got the first and the second came straight from a Liverpool attack on the home goal. Lawton fastening on a long clearance near the half-way line and holding off the challenge of three defenders to beat Hobson, Bentham got the third after 24 minutes. Though Hobson was slow to make his effort with two of the goals, there was no denying that Everton thoroughly deserved their lead. Watson, Caskie, and Boyes dovetailed in sparkling fashion, and served up great football. Mercer’s passes, which were the starting point of the first and third goals, were a model of accuracy and timing, and Lawton was in his most dangerous mood.
Then came the sensational period in the second half, Liverpool got a second penalty after Welsh had missed the earlier one, this time when Greenhalgh apparently under the impression the whistle had gone, handled the ball. Balmer who took the spot kick made no mistake with it. Six minutes later the same player further reduced the lead, and within sixty seconds Shannon seizing on a misunderstanding in the home defence, put the sides level. From then to the finish it was a terrific struggle and though the fading light rather spoiled the crowd’s enjoyment –and restricted play to fourth minutes each way –they had ample reward, Everton’s defence until the “avalanche” was excellent. Humphreys gave a grand display all through, keeping Welsh in subjection most of the time, and Burnett at his best in goal. Easdale was Liverpool’s star defender, with Jones excellent both as half-back or forward. Balmer came to his brightest late on, and Shannon gave a plucky display at outside right. The attendance was 19,743 and the result leaves the return at Anfield next Wednesday in an ideal position for another thriller. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Mercer, Humphreys and Watson, half-backs; Gillick, Bentham, Lawton (captain), Boyes and Caskie, forwards. Liverpool; Hobson, goal; Westby and Gulliver, backs; Jones, Easdale, and Kaye, half-backs; Shannon, Taylor, Welsh (Charlton), Balmer, and Campbell, forwards.
ANOTHER GREAT DERBY
September 20, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Liverpool’s Amazing Revival
Blues Sparkle, Then Fade out
Once more the “Liverton” Lads staged a rattling good display for us. Whatever we get, when Liverpool and Everton meet “outside” opposition, when they come up against one another we can usually reply on a thrill-packed encounter. Last night’s game lived up to the best traditions. At six o’clock with such a side as Everton turned out one felt sorry for Liverpool. It look such a David and Goliath business. At 7.30 (we had only forty minutes each way) it was Everton who needed the pity. There we were at the start –Everton with six internationals and the full pre-war forward line, and the Little Red Riding Hoods from Anfield with only three players of pre-war experience. It promised to be sheer football “murder” I doubt whether the most optimistic Anfielders had any real hopes. Yet in the end it was Everton who were lucky to avoid defeat. Up to half-time there was no sign of the silver lining which was later to send Anfield supporters home in such jubilation. On the contrast, it you happened to be a “Red” it was sheer unrevelled gloom and despondency. Everton had served up football of international standard. Their attack had scintillated and sparkled as one expected from such a talented line. The case with which they found their men in the open spaces; the accuracy and daintiness of their moves, and their dazzling interchange of positions and had made Liverpool for whom nothing would go right, for much poorer than in actual effect they were Caskie, Boyes and Watson served up some exquisite craftsmanship. Gillick showed again his facility for cannily slipping into a scoring position, and Lawton was not only a danger every time he got the ball, but kept play well opened out by his well-judged passes. Behind the high-class line were Mercer, past master in the art of making the difficult look simple –he started the moves which led to two goals –and Humphreys pungent and persevering, if not yet as polished as he will be later, plus a solid rearguard which nipped in the bud all Liverpool’s efforts by their keen tackling, spilt-second interventions, and wise anticipation. The home defence was frequently collecting passes meant for a Red Shirt, and Liverpool struggled like drowning men.
“In the Bag”
Even allowing for the fact that Hobson should have saved two of the goals, and that another came straight from a long clearance in the home goalmouth-and a lightning Lawtonian dash –Everton’s superiority was not flattered by their 3-0 lead at the interval. Lawton (two) and Bentham had been the scorers and at this stage everybody felt Everton had the game in the bag. A Press-box colleague suggested hereabout that the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Hard Triers should be called in to stop Everton rubbing it in too much in the second half. With the inherent cautiousness one always has to call up when Liverpool have their backs to the wall, I counselled him to “wait and see.”I admit much real hope, but you can never jump to conclusions with Liverpool. They are like home-made barn beer you never know when the cork is going to blow off. If Everton hadn’t been three up maybe the story would have been different. Once again as so often happens with the Blues, a comfortable lead pulled them into a sense of false security. You could almost sense them thinking “Why worry, the poor beggars haven’t a chance so we can take it easy. And take it easy they did –with dire consequences. They started to be pernickety and careless; they ceased to look that extra move ahead which had served them so well, and even when Welsh ,missed a penalty and the green light was beginning to turn red they still elected to play as though it was all over bar shouting.
Then, like a bolt from the blue, came Liverpool’s atomic blow. During a hot attack Greenhalgh handled a ball that was going out of play –he thought the whistle had gone –and Balmer made no mistake from the spot. Six minutes later Balmer further reduced the lead, and within another minute Shannon, who got last week’s winner, kept up his record of scoring a goal in every game he played against Everton by getting the equaliser. What a turn-round. Three goals in seven minutes. That not only shook Everton out of their complacency but upset them so much that where they had once been confident and compelling they were now nervy and anxious. Though they tried hard to recapture their earlier lustre, the sting had been extracted. A mishap to Lawton who hobbled painfully on the right wing –the old leg injury has reasserted itself –didn’t help them, but Liverpool had done the damage before this happened. In the closing stages Liverpool fought like tigers to get the winning goal, and it took the Blues all their time to prevent them. It was a great revival, a fine tribute to Liverpool’s never-say-die fighting spirit and team-work and it sent the 19,743 spectators home in a happy frame of mind. More than that, it left next week’s return game at Anfield in the ideal state for another thrill-a-minute display. I’ve already mentioned the stars of the Everton side who shone almost exclusively in the first half. Let me give credit, not to Liverpool’ stalwart. First of all to Easdale a great centre half, despite Lawton’s two goals; next to Jones whose introduction into the attack in place of Taylor at the start of the second half had so much to do with Liverpool’s rally, and them to Shannon, a lion-hearted youngster who pulled so much out of himself that in the end he could hardly have blown the top off a custard. Also to Kaye and the backs and to Balmer for a second half display which more then balanced some disappointments of the first.
Everton home to Leeds United will make their final selection from; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Grant, Lowe, Bentham, Lawton, Catterick, Wyles, Boyes, Makin.
Birkett, Southport’s guest goalkeeper from Everton is likely to be out of the game for some time as the result of the knee injury he sustained at Manchester last night.
September 21, 1945. The Evening Express
The Goodison park game, where we find an Everton fielding a defence which should be good enough to ensure safety from defeat. The Blues doubts affect the attack and there is hope that Lawton will have recovered from the slight knock he received in Wednesday’s “Derby” game so that he can lead the forwards. So far Leeds had a doleful experience for they lost their five matches and have scored only six goals. True Everton have scored, but eight in league games and have conceded a similar number in gaining a point a match played. The “Peacocks,” have lost twice to Chesterfield, twice to Barnsley and once to Stoke City, whereas the Blues have defeated Bolton and drawn with Preston at home, beaten Preston and lost at Bolton and Liverpool away. My reading of the Everton form so far is that better results would have accrued had the inside forwards shot with greater enterprise. Openings have been gained by dint of delightful manoeuvre but there has been a curious reluctance to have a go.” No one minds a player shooting and missing so long as he at least makes an attempt. It is when forwards will not shoot that the spectators begin to tear their hair. So Everton, let us have some snap marksmanship tomorrow, for I think it will bring victory. Everton (from); Burnett, Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Grant, Lowe, Bentham, Lawton, Wyles, Boyes, Makin. Leeds United; (from) Hodgson; Hudson, Jones (S.); Duffy, Coyne, Henry, Stephens, Hindle, Grainger, Laidman, Chew.
LEEDS ARE “STRANGERS”
September 21, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Leeds United tomorrow pay their first visit to Goodison Park for several years, and, if their record so far is any criterion. Everton ought to be booked for maximum points. The Yorkshire side hasn’t got a solitary point so far out of five games. Except for Jack Milburn, Gadsby, and Powell, who are the only pre-war men to have played this season, the Leeds team-sheet today conveys little to us here. Most of the names spell “stranger.” Even these three are not likely to play on Saturday. Coyne, who began as an inside forward and then became a half-back, has been earning high praise, and Hindle, a local product, is chief marksman with three out of the six goals which United have got in six matches. The big Leeds weakness is obviously in front of goal, and this is confirmed by a friend who has seen them recently. Until they can develop more punch in the penalty area they are going to languish says he. Leeds were last at Goodison in September 1940, when Everton, fielding nine of their pre-war championship side defeated them 5-1. Gordon Hodgson led the visitors that day. Now he is coach-cum-deputy-trainer at eland Road. The goalkeeper below is no relation to Gordon, by the way. He is a Durham lad. Everton are very hopeful that Lawton will have recovered from Wednesday’s injury and be fit to play, so far no definite word has been received. Catterick, originally included as a probable, has been give permission assist Stockport. Everton (from); Burnett, Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Grant, Lowe, Bentham, Lawton, Wyles, Boyes, Makin. Leeds United; (from) Hodgson; Hudson, Jones (S.); Duffy, Coyne, Henry, Stephens, Hindle, Grainger, Laidman, Chew.
George Mahon Cup
Everton “A” have been draw against Earle, away.
LEEDS QUICK SCORES
Liverpool Evening Express - Saturday 22 September 1945
SHOCK FOR BLUES
Two ex-Merseysiders were in the Leeds United team opposing Everton in the Football League game at Goodison Park today—Laidman, the former Everton inside forward, and Grainger, the Southport winger. Leeds were still seeking their first point, and travelled in charge of a former Wallasey resident, Mr. Stanley Blenkinsop. Makin was suffering from cold so Grant appeared at outside left and Wyles was at centre forward, as Lawton, who was in Liverpool, failed to turn up. Tommy Lawton, the international centre-forward, will appear before the Everton directors on Tuesday evening in connection with his request to be placed on the transfer list. EVERTON: Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Mercer, Humphreys, Watson; Lowe, Bentham, Wyles, Boyes, Grant. LEEDS UNITED: Hodgson; Hudson, Jones; Duffy, Butterworth. Coyne; Grainger. Laidman. Henry, Hindle, Chew. Referee; Mr. D. Schofield (Oldham). Everton had quite a shock for .11 two minutes Leeds took the lead with a brilliant goal by GRAINGER. The United had forced a corner on the left righ? from the kick-off and Everton were unable to shake them off because Leeds were a yard faster on the ball. Chew broke through and placed low across goal to Hindley, who deceived the defence letting the ball pass between his legs for the inrunnmg Grainger to hook the ball into the net. Leeds almost made it two when Kindle streaked through, only he pulled his shot a little too mucn and it went the far post. At last there was activity on the Everton front with Wyles shootihg outside before Boyes let go a beauty from the edge of the penalty area for Hodgson to save.
EVERTON UNITS FOUND LEEDS UNITED
September 22, 1945. The Liverpool Football Echo
Goodison Forwards Not yet In Right Blend
Grainger and Henry Goals
Leeds United belled their lowly position in the League table by their show at Goodison Park today. They were worthy victors over an Everton side which was woefully weak in attack, and was only a colourless initiation of that which gave such a fine display in mid-week. Leeds finished the last 15 minutes of the game with only ten men. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Mercer (captain), Humphreys, and Watson, half-backs; Lowe, Bentham, Wyles, Boyes and Grant, forwards. Leeds United;- Hodgson, goal; Hudson and Jones (S.), backs; Duffy, Butterworth, and Coyne, half-backs; Grainger, Laidman, Henry, Hindle and Chew, forwards. Referee; Mr. D. Schofield, Oldham. Tommy Jones, Everton’s Welsh international centre half, has been training this week, has had ball practice, and hopes soon to be fit to resume. He had a game with his R.A.F, unit during the week, playing at outside right, and came through satisfactorily. In view of his long lay off, however, he may ask for a preliminary run with the reserve side before resuming in the first team. Makin was unable to play against Leeds owing to a heavy cold, and Grant took his place, with Wyles in the middle in place of Lawton, whose injury is still giving him trouble. Leeds had Dennis Grainger, of Southport at outside right. Everton suffered an early shock, for Leeds United were a goal up before the game was three minutes old. Grainger was the scorer. He got his chance when Henry deliberately allowed a centre from Chew to pass between his legs, leaving the former Southport player with a clear avenue to goal. He made no mistake. The next ten minutes or so provided excellent football, with Everton striving hard to get level, but finding the Leeds defence very solid, and Hodgson calm and confident in goal when called upon. The Leeds ‘keeper made two excellent saves from Boyes, who again was the “Life and soul” of the Everton attack. Leeds during this time were by no means idle, and they always looked dangerous in their quick raids on the home goal. Hindle was alert, but just a trifle slow to essay a shot when he got within range. Granger sparkled on the Leeds right wing, and two of his shots went very close.
In The Rigging
Then came a rather fortunate escape for Everton. Laidman put a picture pass right through to Henry and the strapping burly leader looked to have a great chance but his powerful shot struck the side rigging. Two thrilling incidents came within a minute of each other at either end of the field. First, the Everton defence got in a tangle and the ball lobbed up and down in the air in front of goal without a Leeds man being able to get his head to it. At the other end the visiting goal underwent a similar experience, but again the defence finally managed to scramble the ball away. Leeds were providing football which gave the line to their position in the League. They swung the ball about freely from wing to wing and the Everton defence was having all its work cut out to hold the lively visiting attack in check. Sand grounders Grainger was doing great work on the right wing and at this stage he served up the best shot of the match –a real Lawtonian drive which just skimmed the bar. Humphreys was still finding Henry a warm handful, and if only Leeds had been as good in finishing as they were quick and lively in approach, Burnett would have been much busier. Mercer delighted the crowd with the canny was he brought the ball down to earth and under control, and then slipped though an accurate pass to Bentham. The move came to nothing because Wyles for the second time was too eager and ran into an offside position. There was nobody up when Lowe put across a nice swinging centre, and the Everton attack just now was not moving with the smoothness and understanding one had anticipated. Another cross-field pass from Chew to Grainger set Leeds on the attack, only Humphreys this time intercepted before serious danger threatened.
After the Ball
Bentham was feeding Lowe with excellent passes, and the winger was responding well though he has not yet quite the strength to get his centres over as he will do in the course of time. On one occasion, Boyes came over from inside left to outside right to take a corner kick. Leeds continued to put everything they knew into the game. They went for the ball, and did not wait for it to come to them, whereas Everton by close passing, were making their own task more difficult. Mercer came up several times in an attempt to pull the Everton attack more into unison. It was a good idea, but unfortunately there were times when the ball was booted back quickly and it left Jackson facing a large expense of field on his own. Coyne, who all along had played extremely well for Leeds, initiated a couple of moves which might have spelled danger had Hindle been just a trifle quicker on the uptake. Half-time –Everton 0, Leeds Utd, 1. Mercer, and Bentham changed places when Everton resumed for the second half. Still nothing went right for the Blues, whose forward efforts were constantly smothered at birth by the quick tackling of the Leeds’ defence and the way the visitors went for the ball. Wyles who had got himself offside with irritating frequency in the first half, continued to fall into the same trap because of his failure to keep an eye on the opposing defence. Chew missed a great chance of putting Leeds further ahead, when he elected to trap the ball and shoot instead of making a first time effort when he had only Burnett to beat from close range. Grainger served up a couple of excellent shots, but at the other end Wyles, with plenty of time to take deliberate aim, lifted a centre from Lowe high over the bar.
Some exuberant members of the crowd, which by now numbered about 20,000 let off a few fireworks, presumably with the idea of gingering up the home side, certainly not. I should imagine by way of celebrating unless maybe they were from Leeds. This was a disappointing Everton, the more so when we remembered their brilliancy of Wednesday night and there was no denying the best football had come from the visiting side who, had their finishing been more on a par with the rest of their work, would have been in an even more commanding position. Grainger had to go off for 5 minutes or so with an injury to his left leg, and he was hobbling painfully. He had only just come back when Leeds increased their lead in the 64th minute. Laidman picked up a loose ball and put through a smart pass up the middle to Henry, who took it in his stride and sent the ball into the net like a rocket, what time Greenhalgh was appealing for offside. After his blow which, unless there was an amazing revival had pretty well killed Everton’s hopes, the home side again reshuffled its attack, which now read; Lowe, Mercer, Boyes, Bentham, Wyles. Boyes had a great chance to reduce the score when he got a pass from Bentham and topped his shot. Had it been one of his usual efforts this would have been a certain goal, for it took Hodgson all his time to reach the ball. A moment later, when Lowe put a nice centre over, there was nobody up to take advantage. Mercer came along to take a corner from the right and show how these should be taken. Everton, as an attacking force, was still a collection of units with little punch and little understanding. Leeds got the ball into the net again, Hindle being the “scorer” but he was well offside, and the point, of course, was negatived. A quarter of an hour from the finish Grainger left the field after having given an excellent display.
Then came the outstanding incident of the match. Boyes started a dribble in his own half of the field at the left half position, came right over to outside right, served Lowe with a delicious pass, and then was back in the middle to head the ball over the bar after a shot from Wyles had been blocked. Boyes, and Mercer had worked like Trojans to weld the Everton side into a workmanlike combination, and their efforts had deserved –but not achieved –success. Everton tried still one more reshuffle in a last despairing effort. Mercer returning to right half. Grant going inside right and Bentham centre forward. It almost brought reward for Bentham was right through when he was obviously pulled back by Butterworth; yet Everton got no free kick. It was a good job for Everton that Jackson and Greenhalgh had stood firm in spite of their gruelling task, often wise the deficit would have been greater, for Leeds were lively and dangerous every time they got within shooting distance and were always willing to have a go.” The home goal had a narrow escape in the closing minutes when Henry headed in a centre from Laidman, and Burnett, who could not properly reach the ball at the first attempt, had to have a second go at it, and only managed to scoop it out dead on the line. Final; Everton 0, Leeds United 0.
ASTON VILLA RES V EVERTON RES
September 23, 1945. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton opened well, Trentham making an opening for Wilkie who however shot wide. Villa replied on the right, and Jones made a fine save from Boonham as the centre forward ran through. Houghton scored for the Villa after ten minutes giving Jones no chance from close range. Everton played well after this reverse, Logan, Bell, and Wilkie being prominent. Half-time –Aston Villa Res, 1, Everton Res 0. The Villa scored two quick goals on resuming Booham netting twice in five minutes. Everton were overrun for a time, and only splendid work by Jones in goal kept the score down. Goffin scored a fourth goal for Villa after 60 minutes but Trentham reduced the lead following fine work by Bell. Final result; Villa 6, Everton Res 2.
EVERTON BEATEN AT HOME
September 24, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
Leeds Worthy Winners
Whatever there was in the way of thrills and skill in the game between Everton and Leeds United at Goodison Park was provided almost exclusively by the visitors who were worthy winners by 2-0. This was Everton’s most disappointing display for along time. Only the fact that the rearguard stood firm throughout a gruelling afternoon prevented the deficit being much heavier. Had Jackson and his colleagues cracked. Leeds might well have run riot. As it was, the defence is absolved from blame, but so far as the attack is concerned there is little, if anything, one can say in its favour from the standpoint of team work and combination. Individually Boyes, Bentham and Mercer worked hard to infuse some fire and understanding into it, but it well of no avail. Three times in the scored half Everton switched their forwards and Mercer about in wholesale, fashion in the hope of striking some semblance of blend. They might just as well not have bothered. Never at any time was the attack anything more than a collection of isolated units with no chanson, understanding, punch or finish. Boyes strove manfully to show them, the way, but got no backing worth speaking of. In fairness to Grant, it should be said that he was out of position. Lowe again showed that on the score of physique and experience he is not yet ripe for first team inclusion but he has good football in him.
Wyles has rarely had such a bad day. Moreover, he was constantly offending against the offside rule. He was too often in the right spot at the wrong time before the pass had been made. On this showing Everton need a lot of improvement before they will start o climb the League ladder. Considering their lowly position, Leeds were a revelation. Their defence bore favourable comparison with Everton’s and their attack was immeasurably superior. They moved the ball freely from wing to wing, went for it instead of waiting until it came to them, and were always willing to shoot when the opportunity was there. Had their marksmanship been more accurate they would have won by a much greater margin. Until he was injured half-way through in the second half and had to leave the field. Grainger the former Southport player was the best forward on view. He scored the opening goal in three minutes, and Henry got the second after 64 minutes. Even with ten men Leeds were still the more forceful side. . Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Mercer (captain), Humphreys, and Watson, half-backs; Lowe, Bentham, Wyles, Boyes and Grant, forwards. Leeds United;- Hodgson, goal; Hudson and Jones (S.), backs; Duffy, Butterworth, and Coyne, half-backs; Grainger, Laidman, Henry, Hindle and Chew, forwards. Referee; Mr. D. Schofield, Oldham.
• Liverpool beat Blackburn Rovers 5-0, Fagan (2), Jones, Balmer (2)
September 24, 1945. The Evening Express
There is always plenty of room upward once you have touched rock-bottom. Liverpool found this to be true, for after their doleful games with Bury they have risen to the heights with a smashing 5-0 win at Blackburn following on the grand recovery against Everton. That should encourage Everton, who, in truth, touched rock-bottom on Saturday when they were defeated 2-0 by Leeds United at Goodison Park. This was the most indifferent Everton display I have seen since Christmas Day, when they lost to Tranmere Rovers after being two up. The Blues never looked like a team and from the moment –two minutes to be precise –that Grainger opened the scoring a Leeds victory was a certainty. That it was not more pronounced was due to some good defensive work by the Blues. Apart from defence however, Everton were comfortably mastered and although they had their measure of attack their raids generally broke down when the penalty area was reached. The Everton officials are fully alive to the fact that this is not good enough for a club with such traditions, and I know that steps will be taken to remedy defects – and quick steps at that. The Blues had out eleven wholehearted triers, in fact I think they suffered because they relied a little too much, but they could not knit together and several team switches failed to bring the desired effect. Cecil Wyles had one of those games in which nothing would do right, but the spectators who pulled his leg could not have known that up to ten minutes before the kick-off Wyles did not know whether he was to play or not. Lawton did not arrive until 2.50 p.m. to say he was unfit to play and so Wyles had to make a hasty change and get out. Those things do not help any player, and my sympathies were with Wyles while allowing that he failed in his task. So did others in this team of striving units which never once got together. The honesty of purpose was there all right, but that was all. I though Wally Boyes was the pick of the bunch, but he could be faulted for nor dropping back to the open space. Throughout Everton allowed the United inside forwards far too much operative room in centre field, and Hindle –a splendid player this –and ex-Evertonian Laidman, the Wigan lad, took full advantage. Joe Mercer strove valiantly to weld Everton into a team, and so did Gordon Watson, but it was like attempting the impossible, for the harder Everton tried the worse they became and it was no surprise when Henry got a second goal at a time when the United were reduced to ten men. All praise to Leeds for a fine victory, and their display was not in keeping with their five successive defeats. Their defence was splendid operating around the amateur Butterworth, but this was a day when it was comparatively easy, to shine for the opposition was poor. And so we draw the curtain down on a match the 19,711 spectators. Everton and myself want to forget.
LEEDS SUPRISE EVERTON
September 24, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
A Dismal Display
As I’m starting a delayed holiday today, phones Ranger, and don’t want to begin it too desperatingly, I propose to temper the wind of criticism over Everton’s dismal display against Leeds United with a little kindness to the shorn lambs. Suffice it to say that this was the word forward exhibition we have seen from them for a long time and that had not the defence, stood firm in face of a heavy task Leeds would have romped home by a much greater margin than two goals. There are certain things to pint out in fairness to the Everton players. First, Grant was out of position, second Lowe is only a youngster with much to learn, but he has football in him and at the moment lacks only physique and experience. He must not be discouraged. As for Wyles he is no doubt feeling just as upset himself about his poor display as the most disgruntled spectators who saw it, so we will leave it at that. Boyes and Bentham are absolved from blame for the poor forward shot particularly Boyes who out in an afternoon of terrific but wasted endeavour. He was the only forward who could either shoot or work the ball to advantage. He pulled his inside out, but the odds against him were too great. The defence also is acquitted with a clean bill. Indeed they came out with what little credit Everton got –out of the game. Had they wilted the tale would have been a sorry one. Humphreys was not at his best against the speedy and dangerous Henry, but he was well covered by his backs, and the wing halves did as much as anybody could have expected under the circumstances. Mercer tried valiantly to pull the team together. It was all to no avail. Occasionally his efforts had a boomerang effect for he went so far up that when the attack fizzled out and Leeds swept down Jackson was left with a double burden. the visitors were a revelation. Their lively attack was something one had not expected from a side in their lowly position. Grainger was the chief star, with Henry a forceful leader, and Hindle a clever schemer. Everton’s board is not blind to the side’s weakness. We can take for granted they will endeavour to remedy them as far as possible. Unfortunately their star players are not always available. And now let me say an revoir for a fortnight. Shall be seeing you again. Keep smiling.
September 25, 1945. The Evening Express
Tomorrow afternoon we gather again at Anfield for the third successive midweek “Derby” between Liverpool and Everton. This will be the second “leg” of the Lancashire senior Cup first round tie for the right to face either Bolton Wanderers or Accrington Stanley, and the teams start level at 3-3. Before dealing with the game, let me emphasize that manager Mr. George Kay, of the Reds, and Secretary Mr. Theo Kelly, of the Blues in giving their team do so with as much hope as anything else. Do not blame the clubs if certain players do not turn up. For instance in the Everton team you find Gillick or Lowe at outside right, and Caskie or McIntosh at outside left. This does not mean that Gillick and Caskie or either of them is going to play. All it does signify is that Mr. Kelly is doing all he can to bring the international from Scotland. If plans fall through please do not blame the club. The same applies to Liverpool. Mr. Kay includes Nieuwenhuys and other Services players, but until half an hour before the kick-off he does not know whether they will be able to play. Welsh is injured and cannot play for the Reds. Leslie Shannon is being given another run at outside right as I forecast, but for the rest it is a case of hope springing eternal. One thing of which you can be certain is that this will be another thrill-packed game. Everton will have Harry Catterick at centre-forward, Rawling is in the attack, and Grant will be at right half as Mercer plays in a Services game. Do not forget the kick-off is three o’clock and not in the evening. Liverpool (from); Hobson; Westby, Gulliver; Taylor, Easdale, Hughes, Kaye, Pilling; Shannon, Nieuwenhuys, McInnes, Balmer, Campbell. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Grant, Humphreys, Watson; Gillick, or Lowe, Bentham, Catterick, Boyes, Caskie or McIntosh, Rawlings.
PROMISE OF ANOTHER THRILLER
September 25, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
I was holidaying last week, so was unable to see the Everton-Liverpool Derby game at Goodison Park, but since my return I have heard a whole lot about it. I seem to have missed something from all accounts. Well perhaps I will have the opportunity of seeing another thriller tomorrow afternoon, at Anfield when the teams meet again in the return game. While sheltering from the rain in the Lake District, I had a grand opportunity for reading and some of the results caused me great surprise. You could have knocked me over with a feather after I read the result of the Everton-Liverpool game for at half-time the result appeared to be in Everton’s “bag” but Liverpool produced one of their do-or-die efforts to force a draw –from what I hear they almost won. How often have I seen this sort of thing where Liverpool have been concerned. The opposition can never take anything for granted against the Anfielders for they are always liable to burst out into a brilliant spell and match the game from out of the fire. It was ever thus with Liverpool. Well that is now the average football follower likes his Soccer, especially so if he is not the rabid fan who cannot see anything good in the other side. The actual teams are as yet unknown and will not be definitely known until just before the match, but you may rest assured that every effort will be made to field the strongest possible teams. There is good news from Anfield, for Laurie Hughes’s name appears among the thirteen cames manager George Kay gave me yesterday. Laurie had a run out with the reserve team on Saturday and from all accounts came through his test with complete satisfaction. No risks will be taken with him for in Easdale they have a reliable substitute who has filled the breach with distinction. Jones their utility man has gone back off leave so is not available. At noon today news came through that Welsh could not play on account or injury. In the first game Everton had a star studded team. They would like to turn it out again, and according to the club there is a possibility of Gillick and Caskie being available; at least their names are included in the side with “off, absent” alongside their names. If they cannot appear Lowe will take the place of Gillick and McIntosh will operate at outside left. Liverpool (from); Hobson; Westby, Gulliver; Taylor, Easdale, Hughes, Kaye, Pilling; Shannon, Nieuwenhuys, McInnes, Balmer, Campbell. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Grant, Humphreys, Watson; Gillick, or Lowe, Bentham, Catterick, Boyes, Caskie or McIntosh, Rawlings.
EVERTON F.C. PLACE LAWTON ON TRANSFER LIST
September 26, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
By John Peel
Merseyside football followers, particularly those who favour Everton, will learn with regret that T. Lawton, the Goodison Park Club’s and England centre forward is after all likely to leave the club. He asked to be placed on the transfer list some three months ago, owing to his wife being medically advised to leave Liverpool, preferably for residence in the South. Lawton, however, withdrew his request on being assured that everything possible would be done to get him a house in a district which would meet with medical approval so far as Mrs. Lawton was concerned. Unfortunately houses are difficult to obtain and although Everton F.C. did all they could they were unable to find a suitable place. As a result Lawton again asked to be placed on the transfer list three weeks ago, when a meeting of the directors held the matter over until the player could be present. Last night the directors again met and Lawton attended and at the close the following statement was issued; - at a meeting of the directors of Everton F.C tonight which Lawton attended, it was reluctantly agreed that the player’s request to be placed on the transfer list be accepted to for compassionate reasons, due to his Wife’s health. There has been no difference between Lawton and the Everton club which Lawton joined from Burnley in December 1936 when 17 years of age, since when he has gained every honours in the game except a Cup Final medal.
The Lancashire Senior Cup competition holds the football stage again today when the “second leg” of the first round tie between Merseyside’s big rivals –Everton and Liverpool –takes place at Anfield this afternoon. This will be the third clash between the clubs in as many weeks. Liverpool having won the first meeting a league game at Anfield by 2-1, and the second meeting ending a 3-3 draw at Goodison Park after the Anfield side had been three goals down. The teams start level today as a result of that draw and as both are likely to be strongly represented a keen tussle to earn the right of entry into the next stage seems absured. Both sides have unchanged defences, but show alterations in other departments. Liverpool will have Jones, who was expected to return to Germany and would be unable to play at centre-forward, the player having obtained an extensions of leave, while Kaye appear at inside right with Taylor right half Everton are hoping to have the services of Gillick and Caskie their Scottish international wingers again, while there is also a possibility of Boothway, the Crewe leader, appearing in the Goodison attack in which Rawlings will appear. Teams;- Liverpool (from); Hobson; Westby, Gulliver; Taylor, Easdale, Hughes, Kaye, Pilling; Shannon, Nieuwenhuys, McInnes, Balmer, Campbell. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Grant, Humphreys, Watson; Gillick, or Lowe, Bentham, Catterick, Boyes, Caskie or McIntosh, Rawlings.
The Football League inquiry into the circumstances of the signing of A.W. Fielding by Everton will be held in London tomorrow afternoon.
LAWTON ON TRANSFER LIST
September 26, 1945. The Evening Express
Everton Football Club directors last night faced one of the most serious decisions with which any board could be confronted. They had to make up their minds on the request by their captain, Tommy Lawton, to be placed on the transfer list. Finally, they agreed that the request be granted and so Lawton one of the Everton key men, is leaving Goodison Park –if a club pays what should be an all-time record fee. The task of the directors was unenviable for they had to consider the future as well at the present. Here was Lawton, the greatest centre-forward of the age asking to leave because his wife has been ordered by her doctor to live in the south. It is obvious that not one director wanted to lose Lawton but in saying “Yes” they knew that it might arouse the ire of shareholders and supporters. The directors took the compassionate view, as the following statement, given me afterwards by Secretary Mr. Theo Kelly, emphasises. At the meeting of the directors tonight which Lawton attended, it was reluctantly agreed that the players’s request to be placed on the transfer list be acceded to but for compassionate reasons due to his wife’s health.” That truly indicates that but for Everton’s kind consideration of Mrs Lawton’s health, Tommy would be remaining an Everton player, I saw the doctor’s report, and know that it insists on Mrs Lawton’s immediate departure for the south. By the end of the week Mrs Lawton will, I expect be travelling. But what of Tommy? Well it will not surprise me if one club in particular is, within hours, asking Everton to state their price. The “know-alls” contended that Chelsea was the club set on securing Lawton if he was allowed “away” but my tip is certainly not Stamford Bridge.
It Took Courage
That one should connect Lawton with transfer is unthinkable. It is the Everton way to secure and keep the best players not transfer them, but not one wit of criticism can be levelled at the directors in making their decision. I admire men who had the courage to take such action, and I am sure that at the next shareholders meeting their action will be endorsed, wholeheartedly. Every shareholder with whom I discussed the matter expressed the opinion that it would be folly to keep a player who was not happy. And believe me Lawton has not been happy these past few months. I have seen Tommy maybe more than anyone else, and, in fact, did all I could to help him secure a house outside Merseyside so that he could remain here, but Lawton’s requirements could not be filled. As well If Lawton goes I have no doubt that Everton will soon find a successor. The Blues did it for Bert Freeman; for Dixie Dean, and for others before them. They will do it again. We have enjoyed Lawton during his stay at Goodison Park from the day he first set foot there –December 31 1936. Everton created a record by paying Burnley £6,500 for this lad of 17, and in assessing any selling fee have to take into consideration that they have had only two and a half seasons peace service out of Lawton -£3,250 a season; that in wartime Lawton has played more for his country, representative and other clubs sides than the Blues, and that they they will have to pay high for another centre-forward. Add to that the loss of Lawton as a drawing-card and you will appreciate why Everton must ask a record fee, and while last night’s decision was of such paramount importance, in my opinion, Lawton who will be 26 on Saturday week, is the finest leader of the age, and if the parting comes, there will be pangs on both sides. Lawton can rest assured that whenever he goes he will carry with him the good wishes of Everton, the club followers, and Merseyside. Crystal Palace and Nottingham Forest have pressed their interest in Lawton’s future but Tommy assures me that he would not join any but a First Division Club.
LAWTON TO LEAVE EVERTON
September 26, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Millwall to Make Bid for Him
So Tommy Lawton is to leave Everton after all. All Merseyside football followers will regret to hear it, for no matter the “colour” it is agreed that he is the best centre forward in present-day football. Some say he is “the best ever” –better even than Dixie Dean –but that is only a matter of opinion. He is undoubtedly the most deadly centre forward in the game, today, and it is going to be difficult for Everton to fill his place. The same thing was said when Dean left Goodison Park, but Lawton took over his mantle and “Dixie” was not missed. I am afraid it won’t be quite so easy next time, for good centre forwards are scarce. Will there be a rush to obtain Lawton’s signature? The price will be heavy, but there are some who think he would be worth any figure. The record fee to date is the £14,000 paid by Arsenal for Bryn Jones. Well if Jones was worth that, Lawton must surely be worth considerably more and £17,500 has been mentioned. Lawton joined Everton late in December, 1936 and he gained every honour the game can provide with the exception of an F.A. Cup medal. He joined Everton from Burnley, and the fee paid was round about the £7,000 mark, considerable for a 17-years old boy not he has been worth every penny of it to Everton. He has played thirty times for England and has scored 340 League goals, with many more to come. I should think. He has a bright chance of breaking all goal-scoring records but the comparison with such as Dean and McGrory is hardly justifiable, for a goodly number of his goals have been scored during the war years when the opposition was not what you could call top class. Lawton met the directors last night when it was reluctantly agreed that he player’s request be acceded to for compassionate reasons. I am sure all will wish him well whenever he goes. Mr. Tom Thorne, chairman of Millwall F.C. said today. “We shall make an attempt to obtain the services of Lawton.”
EVERTON AND LIVERPOOL CUP TIE STILL UNDECIDED
September 27, 1945. The Liverpool Daily Post
Liverpool 1, Everton 1
After some three hours play, the Lancashire Cup-tie between Everton and Liverpool is still undecided, and another game will be necessary. The position is this. At the end of the extra time -110 minutes –the second “leg” at Anfield was 1-1. According to rule, the game should have carried on until another goal had been scored, but the players had found the heavy going so testing that they did not wish to proceed. The referee went off to explain the position and the two captains were then called in. The Everton captain, Greenhalgh explained that his team did not want to proceed and the Liverpool club agreed. The two clubs tossed for grounds right for another game, which will be fixed at a later date. I think this was the best way out of the matter for one could see signs of tired limbs and bellows-to-mend” during the extra time and to have carried on would have been severe test of wind and limb, while eye damaged muscle might have been the result.
Balmer’s Good Shooting
The game was not to be compared with the first match, when there was everything to commend it –good football, plenty of goals and a thrilling recovery by Liverpool. The return game fell far short of that. The rain-drenched ground made things harder, but one had to realise that the galaxy of stars were missing yesterday. There was some good football in midfield and had the result been possible on the amount of shooting which was done, then Liverpool must surely have carried the day. True it was left to Balmer to do most of it but he shot with great strength and accuracy almost throughout but he found Burnett in his best form, parrying and saving shots which seemed booked for the back of the net. By comparison, Everton’s shooting was poor and seldom. Take away the efforts of McIntosh and one can safely say that they rarely promised any real danger to the Liverpool defence. The Anfielders goal came from the penalty spot after Campbell had been brought down as he was brushing his way through to goal. Balmer was entrusted with the spot kick and gave Burnett no chance with his drive which sped at high speed well away from the Everton goalkeeper.
A Disputed Goal
In regard to territorial rights, the balance was fairly even, but I could always see greater danger in Liverpool’s advances than Everton’s and when Jones netted for them I could see little wrong with the goal. Nor, for that matter could the referee for he immediately signalled a goal. Everton protested and the referee after consulting the linesman stood by his decision but again he was appealed to and again sought the aid of the linesman, where upon he received the decision and ordered a “thrown-in.” That puzzled me for the only thing wrong if there was any infringement that I could see was that Jones was offside. However, the referee had made his decision and there the matter stood. The game seemed to be in Liverpool’s pocket and had they taken all their chances the extra time would not have been needed. Everton showed fighting spirit, but there was still that lack of accurate shooting, and the equalising goal obtained after 74 minutes was actually “kneed” in by Makin. The work that led up to it, however was good football, for McIntosh drifted over to the left wing and made a square pass bang in front of goal. That was the end of the day’s scoring.
In between times there had been several fine openings for both sets of forwards but they were not accepted as they should have been. Shannon, who has scored in every game he has played against Everton was badly at fault a number of times and when he gathered up a clearance from Burnett, he crashed the ball back only to see Jackson “breast” it out of the net. The extra time was full of misses which emphasised the fact that it had been hard going and that the players had about enough of it, and so had the spectators, for it was not the sort of game which inspired. The defences were usually master of the situation and to them go most of the honours. Balmer was the one shinning light in the shooting list. Teams; Liverpool; Hobson, goal; Westby and Gulliver, backs; Taylor, Easdale and Pilling, half-backs; Shannon, Kaye, Jones, Balmer and Campbell forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Humphreys and Watson, half-backs; Rawling (Millwall), Grant, McIntosh (Preston), Boyes and Makin, forwards.
WELSH INTERNATIONALS GOODISON TRY-OUT
September 27, 1945. The Evening Express
Liverpool Football Club are gradually getting back to their pre-war working order, and Mr. John O’Rouse has been reappointed to his 1939 position of assisting secretary. Before turning to one bright spot of Everton news let me gave you another Liverpool decision, matt Busby, former club captain will not play for Liverpool against Blackburn Rovers at Anfield. Now to the Blues, Tommy Jones the Welsh international centre-forward half, who had been out of the game for about 18 months with ankle trouble –he made only isolated appearances last season –is to have a run out with the Central league side at Goodison Park on Saturday. If this brilliant ball player comes through the test all right we can expect his early reappearance in the Football league side. Good, Lawton? No, there is no further news on this matter at the moment, and as I have done little else but ask and answer questions on Lawton for the past 48 hours I am grateful for the rest.
There is a saying in the newspapers world that if a story breaks you can rest assured that Merseyside-appears in it somewhere, and just the same you can bet your last half penny that a Merseyside “Derby” match will always produce a novelty or two. It was so at Anfield yesterday, where 12000 spectators gathered for the second leg of the Lancashire Senior Cup game. Everton had Boothway, of Crewe ready to turn out, but Liverpool discovered that Boothway had already played for Crewe and Manchester United in the competition and so was ineligible. The Reds objected and the objection was upheld by the Lancashire F.A. officials. The teams were still level 1-1 at the end of 90 minutes and also at the expiration of 20 minutes’ extra time. We waited for the teams to start the “play-to-the-first-goals,” period, but Referee Mr. G.H. Fell, of Bolton, went off the field to consult officials, who decided to waive the rule, and so the players trooped to the dressing-rooms. Mr. Fell said to me afterwards that the heavy going had told on the players and himself, and that it would have been unwise to continue. Mr. Theo Kelly, secretary of Everton, mentioned to me that the Everton players were keen to continue, but our enjoyment ended at 110 minutes. Everton getting the bad “break” on a rule that was carried out and also on a rule that was ignored. And their ill-luck continued in the board-room, where the chairmen, Messrs W. H. McConnell and W.C. Gibbins, tossed for the right to stage the replay. Mr. McConnell won the toss for Liverpool, so the relay goes on at Anfield on a date to be fixed. There is no denying that honours were even in the match, and that both clubs will feel pleased when it comes to the week-end League games that another “Anfield” marathon” was avoided. The Reds in particular were a leg-weary side before the end. Liverpool definitely were the more fluid and dangerous side for two-thirds of the game and in fact did not seem in real danger of losing the 14 minutes’ lead established by Balmer’s penalty, but a disallowed goal proved the turning point. The referee ruled that s hot from Jones which struck the bar and bounced down had crossed the line, but on his second consultation with a linesman standing on the goalline not far from Jones and wide of the goal disallowed the point and threw the ball down at a spot near where Jones had been standing. Many people asked “Why?” but Mr. Fell was quite right. Once he had decided it was no goal he could only throw the ball down as there was no other decision to give. It was tantamount to merely continuing the game where it halted. Everton drew level in 74 minutes when McIntosh and Makin adroitly changed places and Makin turned “Macs” centre between Hobson’s legs. From that point Everton were well on top, and went near to winning. However, any other result would have been an injustice to both teams. A curiosity of the game was that each side had a right-half at inside-right and an inside-right at right-half. Balmer was head and shoulders above any player among the Reds, who were also finely served by Gulliver-never a foot wrong –the bustling Jones, Pilling, Campbell, and Easdale’s strong heading. Balmer’s marksmanship was a veritable object lesson. I rated Stan Bentham without superior in the game. Here was the mainspring of attacks and the fast-recovering defender. McIntosh led the forwards well and exposed some limitations in Easdale’s ground work, while Grant showed he is gradually regaining his old virility. Makin had a good second half, and Rawlings was dangerous in flashes, while no fault could be found with the defence except when Burnett came out. Mr. Tom Bromilow, former Liverpool half-back and later manager of Crystal Palace and Leicester City, was at the game to great old friends including brother-in-law Mr. Kelly. Tom looks grand, and said he hopes to take over the managership of a southern club shortly. Syd Rawlings, who did such good service for Everton at outside right has been placed on the transfer list by Millwall. Maybe there will be developments locally.
REPLAY FOR ANFIELD
September 27, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
The Everton-Liverpool Lancashire Cup-tie looks like being a marathon affair, for although they have now played 200 minutes a definity result has not been reached, so a third meeting will take place at Anfield –Liverpool won the toss for ground –at a later date. The score after last night’s 110 minutes play stood 1-1, with an aggregate total of 4-4. After 20 minutes extra time the players were so leg weary –the heavy ground had taken toll –it was decided not to follow out the rule and play until another goal was scored. The game may have gone on until nightfall. It was only a moderate, with the rival defences usually masters of the situation. Oh, yes, there was plenty of endeavour, but the football was not of a very high standard. The goals, one of which came via the penalty spot, did not give true reflex of the shooting from Balmer made some fiery drives only to see Burnett stand in his path. Could a result have been made on the balance of shooting Liverpool would have won handsomely, for Everton’s efforts in front of goal were few and far between. Rarely was Hobson in difficulty, whereas Burnett had to be well on his toes to hold Balmer’s power drives. True, Johnny was the only real shooter in the Liverpool attack, but one or two of his efforts were worthy a better fate. McIntosh, at centre-forward brought out two good saves by Hobson, but what was almost the full extent of Hobson’s work. In midfield there was some nice movements, but the game seemed to lack” bite” and punch. Tommy Jones who has been out of the Everton side for months, is to have a run out with the reserves against Aston Villa at Goodison Park on Saturday.
Everton’s team at Elland-road, against Leeds United is;- Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Mercer, Watson; Rawlings, Wainwright, Catterick, Boyes, Makin.
An extraordinary general meeting of Everton F.C shareholders Association is to be held at central hall. Renshaw Street, tomorrow evening (7-30). The president –elect Mr. W. C. Cuff will address the members. A hot-pot supper will be held at Francis Cafe, parker-street, On Thursday, November 8, tickets from members of the Executive Committee.
September 28, 1945. The Evening Express
Main interest in Everton’s engagement centres on the two pivots, both internationals. In the League side at Elland-road against Leeds United Joe Mercer will take over where he left off at Preston and in the Central League side at Goodison Park against Aston Villa Reserves Tommy Jones, of Wales, has his first serious game since his ankle injury and operation. The return of these stars will, I think, make all the difference to Everton. Honesty I think the Blues can win at Leeds who were made to look better than is really the case by Everton’s poor showing last week. The return of Eddie Wainwright and Harry Catterick to the attack, and the retention of Rawlings, whom I expect to be transferred to Everton shortly, will make for greater understandings and finishing power. The defence inspires the utmost confidence, so I shall be surprised if Everton do not win over a team still seeking its first home point. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Mercer, Watson; Rawlings, Wainwright, Catterick, Boyes, Makin. Everton Reserves; Savage; Curwen, Willcocks; Cookson, Tommy Jones, Archer; Dalglelish, Sweeney, Bell, Ken Dean, Trentham.
Alf Fielding, Everton’s Service inside-left who was signed as a professional on Sept 7, and whose only league appearance was at Preston, has been suspended for a period which will be determined by the Management Committee of the Football league at the meeting in Manchester on October 22. At a London inquiry yesterday, Fielding was alleged to have asked for a sum in excess of the regulations. The three clubs represented at the inquiry were Everton, Tottenham Hotspur, and Charlton Athletic, but there was no imputation whatever against them. Fielding of course, remains an Everton player.
September 28, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Leeds United without a point in their satchel, came to Goodison Park and conquered and created the surprises of the day. It was one of Everton’s poorest displays, their attack being woefully weak. For some weeks now the Everton forwards lacked punch. Take a look at their goals record, and you will find that they have scored only eight goals in six League games. That speaks for itself. There must be more enterprise. A shot is worth much more than a pass any time. It may miss the target, but not to have shot at all when the opportunity arises is deplorable. They hope progressive attack than they had last week, and it will be needed, for the United defence is particularly sure of itself, building up a fine cover to bar all roads to goal. Catterick will lead Everton, and given the right support he is a capable centre forward. Not a Lawton, but a more than useful substitute, Rawlings is named at outside right, and he should get along well with Wainwright, who is improving hand over fist. He was, without doubt the best of the Everton forwards at Preston. Mercer once more takes over the centre half position, and when last I saw him there he was the outstanding man on the field. He completely dominated the North End’s inside forwards. I think we can leave the defence to look after its own affairs. It is up to the forwards. Everton; Burnett; Jackson, Greenhalgh; Bentham, Mercer, Watson; Rawlings, Wainwright, Catterick, Boyes, Makin. Leeds United; Hodgson; Hudson, Jones (S.); Duffy, Butterworth, Coyne, Grainger, Laidman, Henry, Hindle, Chew.
BOYES DOES THE HAT-TRICK FOR EVERTON
September 29, 1945. The Liverpool Echo
Fast and Open Football at Leeds
Brilliant Burnett Save
A game o clever football with plenty of thrills and five goals. Everton were perhaps just a shade the cleverer combination with Boyes ever scheming in attack, and Mercer sound in defence. Leeds took scoring chances in the second half, but Boyes completing his hat-trick, gave Everton the points. Leeds United; Hodgson, goal; Hudson and Jones (S.), backs; Duffy, Butterworth, and Coyne, half-backs; Short, Laidman, Henry, Hindle, and Chew, forwards. Everton; Burnett, goal; Jackson and Greenhalgh, backs; Bentham, Mercer (captain) and Watson, half-backs; Rawling (Millwall), Wainwright, Catterick, Boyes and Makin, forwards. Referee; Mr. D. Schofield, Oldham. Everton visited United this afternoon. Compared with a week ago, when Leeds won through clever football, Everton had several positional and other changes. Mercer moved to centre half, Catterick led the attack, and Rawlings and Wainwright comprised the right wing, with Makin on the other flank. Leeds had one change from last week’s winning side. Short taking the place of Grainger, who is on the injured list. At the start there were about 10,000 spectators, the gate no doubt being affected by the tram and bus strike, although a volunteer service was being run. For many hundreds it was a case of walking to the match.
Defence in a Tangle
It was a perfect afternoon for football with sunshine and little wind and Everton gave the crowd a thrill in the first minute’ when delightful passing by defence in a tangle. Wainwright shot from close range and Hodgson, the Leeds goalkeeper after temporarily losing the ball, feathered it and cleared. A run by Rawlings on the visitors right, ended with Wainwright putting in a low shot which Hodgson saved. Leeds came into the picture with a Short-Henry move. Henry ran in cleverly and sent in a hand shot, which passed just wide of the post. Everton had to defend for a period, but there was a coolness about their work, with Mercer keeping a tight hold on the Leeds attack. Then Rawlings ran well on the Everton right and centred cleverly, but before the inside forward could get to the ball Coyne came across and kicked clear.
There was much to like about Everton’s close passing movements and Boyes once got away, but before he could get in his shot Duffy came up and took the ball from his toes. Pretty triangular play on the Everton right flank looked dangerous for Leeds, but their defence was sound, and Jones kept a tight hold of Rawlings. There was really nothing to choose between the sides after 20 minutes’ play. Catterick led the Everton line with dash and determination, and Boyes was continuously scheming for openings and often harassing the Leeds defence.
United went near to scoring after 25 minutes, when Short, the winger received a pass 12 yards from the visitors goal. A score seemed certain when the Leeds man shot wide of Burnett, but the Everton goalkeeper jumped sideways to bring off a brilliant save. Leeds were now having more of the play but Burnett was equal to all situation. The crowd had increased to 14,000 and they were being provided with a game of fast and open football. Rawlings crowned an Everton attack with a pile-driver shot, but Hodgson the Leeds goalkeeper, was there and saved. Hindle and Chew combined well on the Leeds left wing and there seemed danger to Everton when the ball came into the centre, but Mercer came up and cleared. Burnett saved from Chew in the next minute. It was a game with plenty of thrills and the fact that it was so far goal-less was in itself a tribute to the defences. Henry, the Leeds centre forward, got clear away, outstripping the Everton defence, but Burnett came out of goal and took the ball from his toes –a fine piece of work. After forty minutes’ play Everton were awarded a free kick for obstruction just outside the penalty area and Boyes taking the kick, scored. After taking the lead, Everton kept up the pressure, and Wainwright tested Hodgson with a first-time shot. In the Leeds attack, near the interval. Short put the ball over the bar.
Half-time-Leeds United Nil, Everton 1.
Everton started the second half in attacking mood, with Boyes creating openings for his colleagues. From one more Wainwright secured and shot hard and true, but young Hodgson in the Leeds goal, showed cool anticipation in clearing. After fifty-five minutes Leeds got the equaliser through Short, who came through and scored from just outside the penalty area. The ball hit the post before going into the net. Hindle gave his side the lead after 60 minutes play when he lobbed the ball over Mercer’s head, collected it again and shot out of Burnett’s reach. Leeds were certainly taking their chances but Everton had not long to wait for an equaliser, Boyes scoring after 82 minutes from short range during a melee in the Leeds goalmouth, by lobbing the ball into the net. Boyes completed the hat-trick for Everton after 78 minutes, running through to score while Leeds were appealing for offside. Final; Leeds United 2, Everton 3.
EVERTON R V ASTON VILLA RES
September 29, 1945. The Liverpool Football Echo
Everton were the first to attack. Bell working his way through to test Carey with a lightning shot. The Villa next became dangerous. Callaghan sending across a grad centre to Goffin, who just failed to convert. After 20 minutes play the Villa took the lead, Boonham netting following a mistake by the home defence five minutes later the Villa increased their lead through Graham. Bell reduced Everton’s arrears. Just before the interval Boonan added a third goal for the Villa. Half-time; Everton 1, Villa Res 3. Final-Everton Res 1, Villa 5, Boothan ad Granham scored in the second half.
PARADE OF THE STARS
September 29, 1945. The Liverpool Football Echo
This is The Law
Everton F.C. Cross-Examined
By “Bees” –Ernest Edwards
Some years ago I produced a sports Diary in book form. It was boomed to such an extent that, eventually, a sport phoned me. “Is your Diary out to-day?”There has come to my Hive a book published in 1896 and the production again by the Liverpool Football Echo. It is described as Everton and Liverpool clubs, with 34 permanent photographs. What bothers me no ends is the footnote “Printed in Holland” I did not think we had ever come to that! Certainly, the prints are permanent, and to me and to many of my old-time friends, the book must be of enticing fascination.
Let us turn the pages together, you and 1 old man. The first page is allocated to Everton F.C., and these names come in the football frame; Top row-Storrier, Barker, Briggs, Arridge, second row-Goldie, Boyle, Holt, Stewart, and trainer Blackmore. At foot –Bell, Jack D. Taylor, with folded arms and flowing moustache, Hartley looking like a champion wrestler. Edward Chadwick and Milward. I dare not spend more time on that page; otherwise I should fill the columns. These were the players who flourished in the year 1896, the year when Aston Villa won the league and Cup since which it has never been done again –and; maybe never will be repeated.
Gus Platt’s name is always associated with the striped coloured stocking the footballers wear these days. You may remember Everton had blue striping down their pants, and the blue and white stockings. Gus started this notion. He was “out” in the ring but standing. He remembered his opponents had vivid red sockess. So he felt he would weather the storm that had come upon him if he kept his eye on those stockings. He was lying upon the opponent but in his confused stale he just followed those stockings around till the bell saved him. That was how Arsenal came to copy his principle by making their players wear rather gaudy red stockings. Chapman felt there was no need to look up to see whether “he was one of our players” The stockings were the identification disc.
Go Through Easy Street, Lads!
If I might continue my evidence, Miss Heilbron, I would say “Everton might well put a placard in their training room; Go the easy way, lads. You see, at the moment there are too many roamers in the team. Boyes is the official rover, but when others start to meander the team lose their bearing. They also find the football air too often, instead of using the ball by making ground passes. We will forgive the odd one, lads, if you get most of them by the carpet-manner, such as Mercer and Watson and Bentham used last week. At the moment Everton is struggling and with one hand stood George upon because there is not sufficient planning and positioning. There is too wide a gulf between the backs, I imagine. Don’t think I was trying to teach them their business, lady; I am trying to be helpful to stop the rot. When a pass is made a player accepting the ball should not instantly start weaving a cobweb by taking the ball hither and thither. He should take it up, make ground, and centre or pass at the first ripe opportunity. Like Leeds did, if you can bear the example.
Where Is It Now?
“Time gone by Everton used to train by a special method –a player was not allowed to deaden or trap the ball. He had to use and propel it instanter. That needs of special urgency today. Moreover, I fear the lack of inches and weight when Lawton and company are absent makes it hard work for the rest of the side. Alex Stevenson, Jimmy Settle, and suchlike could dribble on a six-pence and the lack of height was no great barrier because they had strong shoulders, big chests and stout legs. Everton have some splendid young fellows, but there appears to be a surfeit of youth without brawn of height or chest expansion. It is worth your consideration lady. You see, I am confining myself to the law, lady, knowing I am in good hands. “But doubtless my friends of the board will also be happy to consider the points raised in my evidence, as they are raised for one purpose –to try to help a damaged cause.”
Marking Their Cards
Coming back to the pictorial effort of the Football Echo, I note my friend who loaned me the booklet had his own commentaries. Thus “W” Stewart kept a chip shop at the bottom of Everton valley and Walton Road” Thus the onlookers earmarked their heroes. Most handsome of all I rate Jonnie Holt, Jack Bell (from crippled by rheumatism) and Jack Cameron, of whom it was marked en passent bearing. Southworth and Geary the best centre Everton had. Queen’s Park amateur became pro, and was transferred to Spurs to help them win the Cup a year or two later.