September 16, 1901
Amid perfect surrounding the first match of the season between these rivals was brought off on Saturday. Although the sun was shinning it was not too warm for football, the conditions generally being quite stated to the occasion. Special preparation had been made to accommodate the crowd, seats being placed along the edge of the playing pitch. It was estimated that there were quite 30,000 spectators present before the ball was kicked off. The men lined up at 3:30 as follows: –
Liverpool: Bill Perkins, John Glover, Billy Dunlop, Charlie Wilson, Alex Raisbeck, William Goldie, George Bowen, Andy McGuigan, Sam Raybould, William White, John Cox.
Everton: Willie Muir, William Balmer, John Watson, Dan Boyle, Tom Booth, Walter Abbott, Jack Sharp, Jack Taylor, John Proudfoot, Jimmy Settle, Jack Bell.
Everton won the toss, but this brought little advantage, the breeze being of the slightest. The visitors were the first to get going and Sharp were very dangerous, when Wilson fouled him. The free kick was worked away, and then the Liverpool forwards dashed off Raisbeck checked a return by Proudfoot and then Bowen dashed along the wing. He finished with a beautiful centre. The ball flashed past McGuigan and Raybould, but White received it, and slammed the leather into the net, a beautiful goal.
This success was met with howls of joy by the Liverpoolians and encouraged by the cries the home side kept up a rattling attack. Muir had to throw away, from an attack by the home left, and Raybould afterwards shot a tad wide from long range. Play continued in favour of Liverpool. McGuigan on the left wing keeping the Everton defenders busy. Muir again had to handle, but at length Settle dashed off, but was foul before he had gone many yards. Raisbeck nullified the free kick, but for a time play was in the home half.
Proudfoot could not get at the ball to shoot and Goldie cleared, but another foul was given against Wilson close in. Perkins threw away, but Jack Sharp with a beautiful shot at close range dragged the ball round into the net. The teams were now level. Only about ten minutes had gone, and two goals having been scored, the spectators recognized they were in for a good thing.
Liverpool pressed on the left wing, White and Cox downing yeoman service, but Balmer was in good form, and he gave nothing away. From a throw in close in Raybould missed a possible chance of heading into the net, and after some midfield play, Cox shot yards wide.
Despite the best efforts of the Evertonians play stopped in the visitors half, until at length Jack Sharp raced away. His partner however, spoiled the move by foul tactics, and afterwards Dunlop showed good play in allowing the ball to travel behind.
At the other end, Bowen was conspicuous, but Watson charged him off the ball at the last minutes, and Muir had no difficulty in clearing the stiff shot, which he sent in a grand passing run by the Everton right gave delight to their followers, but Dunlop and Raisbeck checked Taylor prettily, and once again play ruled in the visitors territory.
From a foul against Everton. McGuigan netted the ball, but the point was disallowed. Sharp again got off, and Perkins had to run out and handle, the long man from Luton, throwing the leather halfway up the field.
Pretty work of White, Raybould, and McGuigan ended in the latter having a perfect chance, but his shot was ridiculously weak, and Muir easily saved, although the custodian ran far out of his goal, dribbling the ball in very briskly fashion. Another dash by the Everton right, all the play was on the Everton right and the home left wing, ended in Sharp over running the ball, and the thrown in was faulty done. Despite this check, the visiting returned and a foul against the homesters led to a close attack, finishing with Settle sending outside.
Still attacking, Taylor had a pop at goal, but Perkins was not troubled. The Everton right wing, and they gained fruitless corners from a slip by Dunlop. Settle had a perfect chance, but to the disappointing of the Everton spectators, he shot high over the bar, and then Taylor, with a very fair opening, against sent the ball into the air. In a scrimmage in the Everton goal, White fell heavily, and was led off the playing pitch for a rest. Soon after this the visitors got down, and Settle getting possession from Proudfoot sent in a low hard shot, which beat Perkins, and put Everton ahead by 2 goals to 1. Bell was penalised for handling, but nothing more was done to the Interval.
Half time Result: Everton 2; Liverpool 1.
One resuming White was with the front line, and he seemed none the worst for his expectations. The clever inside man rapidly got Cox at work, but the sprinter centred with regard to the position of Raybould, who could not reach the ball. Liverpool had the best of the opening exchanges. From a long return by Dunlop, Raybould got possession and spinning round the heel, he shot in a hard one, which beat Muir all to easily, and put the teams on level term. At 2 goals all.
This was within a few minutes of the resumption, and Everton retaliated with a view to reappearing the experience of the first half, Raisbeck cleared from Proudfoot and Settle, but in doing so hurt his leg. The game was stopped for a few minutes, but the centre half resumed, White was practically useless; owing to his injured shoulder, and Cox played inside.
Towards the end Everton pressed, White who had been holding his shoulder all the time as if in pain, got the worst of a collision with settle, and once more the game was stopped for a few minutes. Settle was penalised for a foul, but from this Bell raced away, and Perkins had to run out to clear. Play rapidly changed ends, the teams apparently being very evenly matched.
Final Result: Everton 2 goals, Liverpool 2 goals.
(Liverpool Courier: September 16, 1901)