No goals at Anfield

February 24, 1893
This return friendly match was played at Anfield before a muster of about 1,500 onlookers. Both teams were indifferently represented, Liverpool at the last moment found that Andrew Hannah, Hugh McQueen and Jock Smith were unable to assist them through injuries, and to make matters worse for the homesters, Andrew Kelvin, one of the substitutes, played but poorly.

Liverpool: Sydney Ross, John McCartney, Duncan McLean, James McBride, Joe McQue, John Cameron, Thomas Wyllie, Matt McQueen, Malcolm McVean, John Miller, Andrew Kelvin.
Stoke: William Rowley, Tommy Clare, Alf Underwood, David Thomson, Littlealms, William Draycott, William Naugthon, William Dickson, Charles Baker, Alf Edge, William Dunn.

Baker kicked off, and the opening stages were decidedly in favour of the visitors, their forwards being much more combined than those of Liverpool. Strong kicking by McLean gave temporary relief, and allowed McVean to get off with a fine run, but Miller misjudged the pass and put the ball over the touch line. Again the Stoke forwards threatened danger, but this was nullified by Dunn and Edge not taking up a pass from their right wing. Then McQue threaded his way down the field, and Clare only just saved when hard-pressed.

Long-kicking by both sides prevailed for some time, a want of cohesion being evident among the Liverpool forwards, but Ross a little later on created some enthusiasm by a grand save under great difficulty. The game livened up somewhat at this stage, and Naughton and Dickson kept McBride and McLean well on the move to avert danger.

Ross was called upon to save from the former, and did so smartly, and then the home team had a look in, McQueen causing Rowley to use his hands, a feat which Wyllie and Miller repeated shortly afterwards.

Timorous play by Kelvin lost a good opening for Liverpool, and then the whole of the visiting forwards executed a pretty movement, which ended in the ball rolling harmlessly over the line. Half-time arrived, and Miller restarted.

At once he and his forwards moved towards Rowley, Underwood giving a corner to avert further danger from Wyllie. Again Liverpool were to the front, and Clare and Underwood had to assert themselves to stave off defeat. Weak play by Wyllie gave Draycott a chance, and giving to his left wing they outpaced McCartney and shot across to Naughton, who promptly gave Ross a very warm one to deal with, and he was rightly applauded for a grand clearance.

McBride next brought himself into prominence for successfully tackling his opposing wing and giving to McVean, and that player when in the act of shooting being charged from behind, was awarded a foul, which, however, was badly utilised. Liverpool now had slightly the best of the game, and with the many chances accorded them ought without a doubt to have scored.

Miller, who played an unselfish game throughout, now got through, and passed over to McQueen, but again Wyllie missed a possible opportunity. As time approached, the game became exciting, and the players allowing discretion to fly to the winds, “went” for each other in anything but scientific style, and fouls became frequent. But strive as they would neither side could score, and a rather uninteresting game resulted in a draw, no goals being scored.
(Liverpool Mercury: February 24, 1893)


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