October 9, 1899
The above teams met for the first time this season at Anfield, before 15,000 spectators. The day was gloriously fine, and well suited for the occasion, the ground being in perfect condition.
Liverpool made several changes in the constitution of their eleven, owing to the unlooked-for results of the previous games, as a perusal of the players named below will demonstrate. Derby were strongly represented, and their previous week’s victory gave them confidence for the encounter. The teams were: –
Liverpool: Bill Perkins, General Stevenson, Billy Dunlop, Rab Howell, Charlie Wilson, William Goldie, John Cox, Tom Robertson, Alex Raisbeck, Hugh Morgan, Abe Foxall.
Derby County: Jack Fryer, Jimmy Methven, Joe Leiper, Charles Leckie, Archie Goodall, John May, Richard Wombwell, Steve Bloomer, John Boag, Thomas Arkesden, John Cooke.
Referee: Mr. J.H. Brodie.
Liverpool started with the sun facing them, and racing away immediately on the right Cox sent across a capital centre, which was bungled by the inside men. This was practically the state of affairs for some time, Liverpool opening their opponents, but finding the Derby defence sound, though, in spite of this, several openings were allowed to slips past.
The visitors rarely got going, but their right wing was well attended to, Bloomer being afforded every chance of making headway. A foul against Liverpool let in the Peakites, and a bully in front of the home goal ensued, from which Arkesden sent in a fast high shot, which Perkins brilliantly cleared. This was replied to by a fine spurt on the home right, Cox racing past all opposition, only to find his shot tipped over the bar by Fryer.
The game continued mostly in favour of Liverpool, for though Bloomer tried hard to get away Dunlop and Goldie were too clever for him. Endless openings were afforded the home forwards, but they proved dreadfully weak in front, the inside men repeatedly failing to utilise the centres which mostly originated from Cox or Robertson.
Derby made some spasmodic efforts, but at length Bloomer drew the defence around him, and then, sending across to the left wing, which was almost unprotected, Cooke dashed in, and dashing into goal put in a fine centre, which would undoubtedly have scored, but Bloomer, who had raced up, touched the ball into the net, and obtained the first goal.
Thus Liverpool, who had almost monopolised they play up to this juncture, found themselves a goal behind. They fared no better up to half-time, though Morgan missed a certain score by overrunning the ball when only a few yards from Fryer.
The second half opened in sensational fashion, the home forwards carrying the ball straight through the Derby defence, and Raisbeck, receiving in front of goal, made a feeble attempt to score. From the kick-out the visitors got away on the right, and sending across, some bustling play took place in front of Perkins, and the ball was driven here and there until it finally wriggled over the line, Bloomer evidently again giving the final touch.
The remained of the second half was almost a repetition of the first. Liverpool could do nothing but score, but about a quarter of an hour from the finish they made a desperate attempt to open their scoring account. Several shots were rained upon the visitors’ backs, and repeated corners led to no decisive result. Either the shot was charged down or sent wide, and the visitors’ backs, acting with coolness, managed to hold their own.
With no success attending their efforts Liverpool fell away, and Derby were more dangerous in the last minutes of the game than at any previous time. Boag got through the backs, and had only Perkins in front of goal, but the Liverpool custodian ran out and kicked the ball away just as his opponent was about to shoot.
The visitors pressing at the finish, and finally won, the score being – Derby County 2, Liverpool 0.
(Source: Liverpool Mercury: October 9, 1899)