The dawn of the Liverpool Caledonians F.C.

September 28, 1891
Last evening the new club established at the south end, to be known henceforth as the Liverpool Caledonians made their debut. It was the original desire of the new organisation that the opening ceremony should have been performed by the Corinthians and Queen’s Park, but these hopes not being realised, Everton ever ready to encourage the development of football sport, consented to take part in the inauguration.

The ground is capacious, with stand accommodation for 1,200 spectators, and, as the enclosure is convenient of access from the centre of the town, it is believed that the venture will fill a void long felt in the south-east suburbs. But of course, everything depends upon the calibre of the players that will be pressed into service whether a high state is approached. Fortunately, the weather was fine, with a strong wind as the only impediment, and for the start the attendance was a good one, numbering about 4,000.

Everton’s team was a mixed one, selected from League and Combination players, whilst the Caledonians included many local men the names being as follows:-
Everton: Dick Williams, Arthur Chadwick, W.C. Campbell, Duncan Mclean, Robert Jones, Hope Robertson, Thomas Wyllie, Joey Murray, Sam Thomson, James McMillan, Jack Elliott.
Liverpool Caledonians: John Whitehead, Ted Griffiths, William Wilson, Ross Muir, Rowan, J. Williamson, T. Deighton, J. Deighton, W. Orr, W. Seggie, Billy Hastings.

Mr. R. Kirkland, the president of the Caledonian Club, kicked off. The home team made ground at the outset, but Everton soon grew dangerous. A foul was given in front, but the free kick ended in the ball passing outside Whitehead’s charge. The Caledonians, from Rowan’s pass up, went smartly down on the right, where T. Deighton took good aim, Williams clearing Hastings and Seggie also ran well. Everton return to the left, and Thomson scored.

Play proceeded on even terms, the ball travelling quickly up and down. The Caledonians forwards showed considerable understanding of each other, and contributed several pretty joint runs, but they were well checked by Campbell and Chadwick. Everton played a splendid passing game, but were not often menacing goal, Wilson and Williamson especially defending stoutly.

The pace began to tell its tale on the home eleven, and Everton playing very coolly had much the best of the argument just now. Still Whitehead had scarcely anything to do, which speaks well for the resources of the men immediately in front of him. Wyllie once got away in a dashing run, but he was foiled in his shooting. A better effort was a long shy by McLean, the ball dropping into goal, and being safely combated by Whitehead.

The Caledonians got near enough in for Williamson to try a shot which Williams tamely brushed aside, and then, having survived a severe attack, the home team found relief on the right wing. The ball, however, went out at the corner, and Everton looked as though they must score from a hot scrimmage created by a right wing. Shortly afterwards the interval arrived with the visitors leading by a goal to nil.

The second stage was opened by Thomson sending in a hot aim, and in Whitehead making a clean save. Everton returned to the attack persistently without the desired result, but were very near scoring on one or two occasions. Hasting and Seggie, by way of variety, went around Mclean in a sturdy run, but found Chadwick impassable.

A movement on the home right wing gave an opening, but when the crucial test came no one could use his foot effectively from Deighton’s centre. Another tussle ensued, and out of this Seggie placed behind. Then time was occupied in Everton, except for an occasional breakaway, working the ball from the half-way line to goal, to be always beaten smartly.

Towards the finish, however the Caledonians went down in force, and T. Deighton tested Williams with a clinkling long shot. This encouraged, the home team closed in again, and were only held in check with difficulty. Darkness now began to set in, and ultimately a very well-contested game resulted in a win for Everton by a goal to nil.

After the match Mr. R. Kirkland (president of the Caledonian Club), along with the committee, entertained the players of both teams and the Everton league team to dinner in the Bee Hotel. Mr. Kirkland presided over this gathering, which numbered nearly 100, including several gentlemen well known in football circles.

After the company had done justice to the excellent repast provident by Mr. Bush, the loyal toasts were cordially drank, after which Mr. H. Brown proposed “Success to the Everton Football Club,” to which Mr. A. Latta and Mr. R. Stockton responded. Mr. Henry Heard submitted “Prosperity to the Caledonian Organisation,” which he trusted in the future would make a name for itself, as he had found that with such able management a club was bound to succeeded. This toast was drunk amidst much enthusiasm, and Mr. Bramley in acknowledging it said that so far their efforts had been well rewarded, as they were much pleased with the manner in which their team had performed against the Everton eleven.

Bootle Football Club was next toasted by Mr. S.Y. Lawson, and responded by Mr. W. Roach. Other toast followed. Messrs J. Thompson, Griffiths, Elliott, Murray, Lawson, Roche, and Whitehead, added much enjoyment to the company by ably rendering songs, etc, during the evening.
(Source: Liverpool Mercury: September 29, 1891)


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