September 16, 1895
Liverpool opened their season at Anfield on Saturday in magnificent weather, and before 10,000 spectators. Upon the appearance of the respective teams each was heartily applauded, but the local eleven, on the strength no doubt of their fine performance at Nottingham, were vociferously cheered. Thanks to injuries the home team was not at its best, while Newcastle substituted Quinn on the right. Upon Ross winning the toss the players lined up as follows:
Liverpool: John Whitehead, Tom Wilkie, Billy Dunlop, John McCartney, John Holmes, John McLean, Malcolm McVean, Jimmy Ross, George Allan, Frank Becton, Harry Bradshaw.
Newcastle United: James Henderson, Robert McDermid, Bob Foyers, William Miller, William Graham, Jimmy Stott, Charles Quinn, William McKay, James Logan, Andrew Aitken, Willie Wardrope.
The opening manoeuvres were all in favour of Liverpool, Bradshaw with Becton making the running right from the start, and McLean had the misfortune to put past the post. An attempt on the part of Logan to break away was finely attended to by McCartney, and Ross, Becton and Allan becoming associated, worked prettily and effectively together, Ross winding up with a fast low oblique shot which Henderson could not deal with.
Following some meritorious defence work by Dunlop and McLean, the latter sent forward to his wing, and Bradshaw and Becton exhibited many pretty exchanges, till the inside player obtained a clear field, and with a long high shot beat Henderson rather easily. This almost unlooked-for success – two goals in six minutes – roused the spectators to a great pitch of excitement, and lavish indeed was their praise of the home team. In no way disheartened by these reverses, the visitors kept plodding away, and as the result of dashing and tricky play by Aitkin and Wardrope the Liverpool citadel was severely menaced, but Whitehead and Dunlop, well backed up by McLean, staved off any immediate disaster. Although the Liverpool play was not quite so good as upon the commencement. McVean and Ross worked nicely along the right wing, and the Liverpool captain again defeated the rival custodian.
A spell of attack was then levelled upon the Anfield’s club goal, Stott dropping in one or two dangerous lobs, but Logan and Quinn each misdirected when close in; and McKay missed a certain score by lifting high over the bar when within but six yards of the goalmouth.
Ross, who seemed to be everywhere when required, at length came over to his old friends Becton and Bradshaw, and as the result of their finessing the first named for the third time defeated Henderson, and half-time arrived with the score: – Liverpool, 4 goals; Newcastle, nil.
On the resumption of play the Liverpool left wing were put in possession, but Allan, by allowing Henderson too much time to clear, nullified the previous work. Stott and Graham then became in evidence, and from a pass by the latter Quinn obtained and ran down to the corner, and Dunlop mulling his pass with the centre, Logan dashed up and sent into the net. The well-deserved success had a most inspiring effect upon the visitors, and right well they took up the running, but bad finishing, opposed by determined defence, completely ruined their numerous chances. Whitehead on two occasions was particularly smart in repelling two shots from Aitkin and Wardrope, but due credit must also be given to the backs for the manner in which they covered their diminutive goalkeeper. Up till close upon the finish Ross was the foremost man to make the running, and he and McVean were a particular thorn to Stott and Foyers, who, however, defended excellently.
At length another brilliant run and cross by Ross was as equally well met by Bradshaw, and the fifth point was registered for the home club. No further score accrued, and Liverpool returned victors by 5 goals to 1.
(Source: Liverpool Mercury: September 16, 1895)