October 16, 1897
Match: Football League, 1st Division, at Goodison Park, kick-off: 15:30.
Everton – Liverpool 3-0 (1-0).
Referee: Mr. Aaron Scragg (Crewe).
Everton (2-3-5): Rab Macfarlane; Peter Meehan, David Storrier; Richard Boyle, Johnny Holt, Jack Robertson; Jack Taylor, William Williams, Jack Bell, John Cameron, John Divers.
Liverpool (2-3-5): Harry Storer; Archie Goldie, Tom Wilkie; John McCartney (C), Thomas Cleghorn, John Holmes; Robert Marshall, William Walker, Daniel Cunliffe, Frank Becton, Harry Bradshaw.
The goals: 1-0 Williams (5 min.), 2-0 Bell (65 min.), 3-0 Williams (85 min.).
The return League match between these local rivals was brought to an issue at Goodison Park, before an immense concourse numbering fully 40,000 persons.
Everton won the toss, and started with wind and sun in their favour. They quickly gained a corner, which proved fruitless, but this was followed by a couple of grand sprints by Bradshaw, Meehan making a wretched attempts to stop him.
The attack was again taken up by the home left, and after Drivers had raced to the other end, he centred across the goalmouth and, though both Bell and Cameron failed to divert the course of the ball, Williams pounced upon it, and drove it against the crossbar into the net, and this first success, after five minutes play, being greeted with vociferous cheering.
After this play allowed down somewhat and a clever bit of work by Cunliffe gave Becton a chance, but he shot wide. In turning round to shoot the last winger hurt himself, and retired, following which the Everton right worked down, but Taylor’s centre was eventually cleared after a bully near Storer.
Becton reappeared, but quickly went off again, and was apparently useless. Rough play predominated at this juncture, and fouls were frequent, but despite their weakened ranks. Liverpool held their own. A fine run and centre from Bradshaw gave Cunliffe a chance, and Storrier just nipped in to save in time, whilst Marshall and Walker, after having got clear away, and the ball behind the goal line.
Everton quickly became aggressive again though a foul against Holt led to the ball being sent over the bar, but the home team were more dangerous, their forwards displaying nice combination, and making for goal in good style.
From a pass by McCartney, Marshall ran down, and centring, Cunliffe got in front and shot in, but McFarlane saved, and though failing in the attempt, managed to throw outside despite the extra attention of Bradshaw. This clever bit of work was followed by Taylor and Williams going along cleverly, and a warm shot from the latter brought out Storer, but at the other end Robertson was penalised, and McCartney placing the ball nicely, Bradshaw drove in at a great pace, though just missing the net, the loud cheers, which followed denoting the most of the spectators imagined a goal had been really scored.
The Everton left wing was now prominent, and a fine centre from Drivers was beautifully kicked away by Storer, and up till half time the game continued to be evenly contested, the whistle sounding with the ball in the Everton half.
With the lead of one goal Everton started the second half in most determined fashion. McCartney robbed Driver when dangerous, but another run by the outside man gave Bell and easy chance from a good centre, which was not utilised, and another clever bit of work by Taylor caused Storer to fist away, and shortly after the Liverpool custodian had to clear two fast shots from Cameron.
Everton pressed in vigorous fashion, but a foul to Liverpool brought relief, and from the kick, Bradshaw and Cunliffe tried hard to score, but Storrier finely cleared. Bell pounced on the ball in the reply, and raced down but the final shot just went outside-a very near thing.
Still keeping up a hot attack, Bell hit the post with a terrific shot whilst a centre from Taylor caused Goldie to give a corner from which, Cameron just shot over the bar. There was no mistaking the superiority of Everton at this period; but the Liverpool defence acted splendidly, and despite their energetic efforts Everton could not find an opening.
Eventually Taylor beat Goldie, and his centre was met by Bell right in front, who shot hard against the crossbar, the ball dropping inside and though Storer throw away there was no doubt about the legitimacy of the goal. The Liverpool goal was bombarded, and Storer had to repel a hot shot from Robertson, whilst a moment later Bell nearly scored again from a pass by Williams.
Liverpool broke away, but Cunliffe was too slow to utilise Bradshaw’s pass, and then Everton forged ahead again, the whole front rank going down splendidly, and twice Everton were nearly through. They had several chances, and eventually Bell, Williams, and Taylor took the ball down finely and after passing and repassing Williams scored with a beauty.
Everton attacked, but in the last minute Bradshaw and Cunliffe had chances, but failed the final score being Everton 3 goals, Liverpool nil.
(Liverpool Mercury, 18-10-1897)
John Cameron, Everton F.C. (Lancashire Evening Post: December 31, 1898).
Harry Storer, Liverpool (Lloyd’s Weekly News: December 1, 1895):