Liverpool v Derby County


April 10, 1899
The return League fixture between the above teams was decided at Anfield, before 12,000 spectators. Both teams suffered owing to the absence of some of their best men, and faced each other in the following positions:

Liverpool: Bill Perkins, General Stevenson, Billy Dunlop, Charlie Wilson, Alex Raisbeck, William Goldie, John Cox, Andy McCowie, George Allan, John Walker, Tom Robertson.
Derby County: Harry Linacre, Jimmy Methven, Charles Leckie, Jack Cox, Archie Goodall, Johnny May, Thomas Arkesden, John Goodall, John Boag, Billy MacDonald, Harry Allen.

Liverpool commenced, and immediately began to force the play, the right wing gaining a couple of corners, which proved abortive. Continuing the attack, Liverpool were awarded a free-kick, which was nicely placed by Stevenson, but Allan failed to reach the ball when a goal seemed assured.

A clever combined effort on the part of McCowie and Robertson led to the latter getting clear away, his final shot landing on to the top of the net, and similar attempts from the right wing were equally unsuccessful. A change then occurred owing to the Derby front rank bursting away, but Dunlop cleared finely, and A. Goodall finally sent over the bar.

Liverpool were quickly busy again at the other end, but the attempts at goal were very rash, and several nice chances of scoring were nullified by wild shooting. After a brief spell of midfield play, another corner fell to Liverpool, which, like its predecessor, proved useless and a clever movement by the Derby front rank followed, ending in J. Goodall hitting the crossbar with a splendid shot, whilst a moment later Boag shot wide.

A couple of brilliant centres from Robertson formed the next item of interest, and from the latter Cox headed finely into goal, but the ball struck the crossbar, and Methven kicked away. Still did Liverpool persistency attack, but their final efforts were useless. Allan, Walker and Cox trying in quick succession to lower the Derby goal without effect. Just before the interval, Allan, when nicely placed, sent wide, and the visitors’ defence prevailed up to half-time, when no score had been recorded.

On resuming, play progressed on similar lines, and it was noticed that McCowie had changed places with Walker, and a brief incursion was made on the right, but Derby returned, and Arkesden sent in a slow shot, from which Perkins unaccountably gave a corner. This was badly placed, but J. Goodall shot over the bar, and the Robertson ran clean away, forcing a futile corner off Methven.

Another chance came when Allan forced his way down, and, passing to Cox, the latter sent straight at Linacre, who cleared, and dealt likewise with another from the same player a moment later. Liverpool attacked with desperation, but Linacre saved marvellously from Allan, and repelled another when full length on the ground. Repeatedly did he save his charge, and the home forwards were not shooting in deadly earnest.

At length Robertson got possession, and Walker led to the outside man shooting in, and Linacre, falling as he stopped the shot, the ball was bundled through after an exciting tussle under the bar. The home front rank now showed more determination than ever, and a few minutes later Walker obtained the ball, and, after a fine run, scored the second goal with a beautiful shot.

There was no restraining the home side, though Derby once broke away and gained a corner, but this was only a temporary respite for the home left wing quickly transferred the play, and Walker again securing, brushed off three or four opponents, and, by sheer determination, forged his way to within a couple of yards from goal, when he safely steered the ball past Linacre.

There was more to follow, however, for Liverpool were now swarming around the Derby goal, and after several exchanges in front, Raisbeck pounced on the ball and drove it with tremendous force into the net. The Peakites were now thoroughly beaten, the home forwards carrying all before them, whilst the halves never gave the opposing side a chance of making headway.

With this big lead, the further attempts at goal were not incisive, and Allan twice missed beautiful openings, in addition to striking the upright with a very fine shot. Liverpool had all the play to the finish, and won very easily, the final result being – Liverpool, 4; Derby County 0.
(Source: Liverpool Mercury, April 10, 1899)

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