Narrow win for Burnley

November 25, 1896
One of the most pleasing second eleven games that has been seen at Turf Moor was witnessed there on Saturday between the Burnley Reserves and Liverpool Reserves. There was a big crowd, in fact, it is seldom that such a large gate is seen at a second eleven encounter. The cause of this was not doubt the big name that Liverpool Reserves have made for themselves, having only been beaten once in eleven matches previous to Saturday.

This was Almond’s first appearance with a Burnley team since his transfer from Nelson, and all eyes were centre upon him, wonder being expressed as to how he would shape himself. Dawson is a local lad, and has figured prominently in some of the local contests.

But now the whistle is blown, and the game has commenced. Burnley are playing uphill, and for the first few minutes show by far the best combined football. But the Liverpool men are a heavy lot, and it is not long before weight begins tell upon our men. Gradually they are forced back, and it is only on rare occasions that Burnley with a rush can get out of their half of the field.

And now Liverpool began to pour n shot after shot. The Burnley supporters almost hold their breath as Haddow is peppered, but he seems to have a magnetic influence in him, and always keeps the ball out of the net.

Burnley do their best to give their champion a little rest before he has to deal with other shots, but it takes them all their time. The Liverpool men know they have someone to deal with who is ready for them and they are determined to give him no repite, but to pepper at him until he I overcome by exhaustion. The home citadel is put into jeopardy and a scrimmage takes place there, but Whittam averts defeat by kicking the ball into the corner. The shot is well placed and the ball headed in from the centre, but Haddow clears beautifully, not however, getting the ball right away, with the result that an exciting scrimmage takes place which ends by the ball being got away.

But it is not allows to go far up the field, the Liverpool half-backs arresting its progress and sending in a terrific shot. Haddow again save by kicking away, but, slipping, does not get it far from the goal mouth. Without an instant’s hesitation he is scrambling after it on his hands and knees between the legs of the players, huge kicks being made at it the while. Finally Haddow rolls on to the top of the sphere, and a scrimmage takes place, all Liverpool endeavouring to get it away.

Haddow, however, is one too many for them, and getting on to his feet with the ball in his possession gives it one of his best throws, and again we are safe.

This so disheartened Liverpool that they allow Burnley to run the length of the field and have a shot at goal, which comes to nothing, and then they return to the Burnley citadel. Hannah sending in a beautiful shot which Haddows as beautifully clears. It is now nearing half-time, and the Liverpool men are still pressing. Haddow has just saved, and his making off with the ball, but slip near the goal post and falls. Bull, at the same moment, makes a tremendous charge at him, and rolls right over Haddow into the outer corner of the post, where he lays completely stunned for some time. After a time it is found that he has seriously injured his knee, and has to be assisted off the field. It was plainly Bull’s own fault.

As a last effort before half-time, Burnley run the length of the field, and the ball is finally lodged with Dawson, who, however, does not make good use of an easy chance, the ball sailing away over the bar. Liverpool again come with a rush, and Haddow saves. The ball is rolling quietly across the front of the goal, and the citadel is in danger, but Almond conceded a corner, from which nothing comes, and the field is vacated with no score put on.

When the teams again come on to the field, Haddow is the recipient of hearty cheers, and it is seen that Bull resumes his position. He makes a desperate attempt to play, but is compelled to return to the tent, from which he does not again emerge until he is ready to go home. With only ten men to play against, it is almost certain that Burnley will be able to something, and with that end in view they work hard. The ball is again lodge with Dawson at a respectable distance from goal mouth, and it is not his fault that it does not go through, he thus making up for his previous mistake. The ball is, however, topped over the bar, and a corner forced, but the Liverpool backs are ready to head the ball out.

Burnley are now having the best of matters, and Ellis Hargreaves, from a pass from the right wing, sends in a champion shot which is kept out, Donnelly throwing away, but the ball is again banged in, and again defeat is averted. Liverpool have another try and receiving the advantage of a free kick for å foul set up a regular bombardment on the home goal. Haddow is seen at his best, and the beautiful way he clears as the ball is shot in, then headed and scrimmaged, is exciting and pleasurable in the extreme. Getting away again Yarwood passed beautifully across the visitors goal, but the wings were too slow for the Liverpool backs, who get the ball away.

Play now begins to be a little bit more even neither side having the advantage. At one time Liverpool handle the ball in their own half, and we next treated to the spectacle of several men rolling about in the Liverpool goal with the ball far enough away. Burnley again resume the pressure, and the weight of the visitors does not avail them much. Donnelly is frequently called upon to save but he does not shine as Haddow has done. At the other end another save is effected by Haddow, he having to run out to do so. Burnley again race away and Beveridge puts the ball to Brown who sends in into the goal out of reach of Donnelly amidst tremendous cheers.

After this Burnley do their best to keep the ball away, but Haddow has still to save, but the final shots are weak, and although it is in a bad light he deals with them effectually and the game ends in a win for Burnley Reserves by 1 goal to 0.

Burnley Reserves: David Haddow, William Tattersall, Whitham, Yarwood, James Brae, Jim Almond, David Beveridge, Thomas Warburton, David Brown, Ellis Hargreaves, Dawson.
Liverpool Reserves: Willie Donnelly, Matt McQueen, Billy Dunlop, Thomas Cleghorn, Joe McQue, John McLean, Alex Latta, Andy McCowie, Bill Keech, Davie Hannah, Benjamin Bull.
(Source: Burnley Gazette: November 25, 1896)

League table, Lancashire Combination.

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