Club news

Season preview 1902-03: Liverpool F.C. (Athletic News)


August 25, 1902
One year League champions; the next, struggling to retain their place in the First Division; such has been the fate of the Anfield eleven in two successive seasons. Liverpool are a team rejoicing in extremes; they are either shining with refulgent radiance, or shadowed in the darkest gloom; a middle course is abhorred by them. This, at least, has been their record in the past, but the future is awaited with more hopeful feelings.

To begin with, the club is being worked this season on an entirely different principle from that which has hitherto prevailed. For the League eleven some eighteen players have been secured, the majority of whom are old favourites, and these will be kept in trim for League matches almost entirely.

Bill Perkins, John Glover, Billy Dunlop, Charlie Wilson, William Goldie, Maurice Parry, Alex Raisbeck, George Fleming, Arthur Goddard, John Cox, Sam Raybould, Andy McGuigan, and George Bowen are all well-known names at Anfield, and as such need no further elaboration on my part.

Bowen, it is pleasing to note, is practising, and his leg appears to be bearing the strain alright. If this should continue and the former Wolverhampton player be fit to participate in League matches, the Anfield front-line will receive a wholesome stimulus from his presence.

Edgar Chadwick will renew his acquaintance with Liverpool on the ground which so many of his early triumphs, and if he can stay the pace should prove a suitable partner for Cox.

McGuigan, who it will be remembered, was injured in the Cup-tie at Southampton and never played for the rest of the season, is doing well, and we trust the speedy forward will be quite sound when the Rovers come for the opening match. But Mr. Tom Watson’s greatest capture has been the Scottish International, George Livingstone. Belonging to Dumbarton, this clever forward played three seasons with the Hearts, and one each with Sunderland and Celtic, from which latter organisation he comes to Liverpool. He took part in that memorable game at Ibrox, and as he is young – 24 years of age – he should prove a rare acquisition.

Richard Morris, the smart little Welsh International, and John Waddington, a likely recruit from Chorley, shaped well during the latter part of last season. An understudy to Perkins has been secured in Peter Platt, who hails from Oswaldtwistle Rovers, and Don McCallum, a sturdy full back, who played with the reserve team last winter, is retained.

The second string will be composed of local aspirants to honour, and two teams of recruits were on view at Anfield on Monday and Wednesday last.

The crowd that love to throng behind the Anfield Road goal will find that they have been provided with a newly constructed stand, which was examined by Mr. Goldstraw, the borough surveyor, and pronounced one of the finest erections he had ever seen. It is built according to an original idea of the part of Mr. G. Rutherford, and on brick foundations. The woodwork is attached in such manner that a more solid and compact erection could not possibly be imagined. The Liverpool executive are delighted with it, and the substantial improvements which they have carried out on the ground deserve the heartiest approval of all.

The season will be opened on the first Monday in September by a visit from the Celts, and the following Monday the Scottish cup-holders, Edinburgh Hibernians, are due. I never saw the Anfield ground in better condition, and Mr. Watson and his co-workers must feel hugely satisfied with the progress made.
(Source: Athletic News: August 25, 1902)

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