October 6, 1906
Everton in arrears
Once again have Everton risen nobly to the occasion in the day of battle against the rival house of Anfield. True, the margin in favour of the Blues represented the narrowest possible verdict, but the impartial must confess that it in no wise indicated the general superiority of the Cup-holders over the League champions of 1905-6. In fact, during the long series of engagements between the clubs one cannot recall a game wherein Everton showed more pronouncedly better fighting qualities and superior stamina.
Liverpool were indeed fortunate to find themselves leading at the interval. Jack Parkinson’s goal was a very good one, although I thought he handled the ball a la Fred Bevan in the Bury match ere controlling it. Whether the referee failed to notice it or considered it a case of accidental handling I know not, whilst it is also undeniable the appeal of the Everton defenders was only a weak-hearted one.
All this time Harold Hardman had been delighting each and sundry with the brilliance of his runs and centres, but Sandy Young in particular was out of it in his gathering of the ball for shooting purposes. However, when Robert Robinson was adjudged to have handled the ball inside the area a minute before half-time, we all thought Everton’s turn had come. But Walter Abbott failed to repeat his converting success as seen in the Notts County match. It wasn’t so much the fault of the shootist as cleverness of Sam Hardy in goal.
The forge to the front.
Seeing that Fortune were thus endeavouring to fight for them, one expected to find Liverpool girding themselves for a long pull in the second half. But they only flattered for a very few minutes, and that inability to last which has been such a marked feature of the Liverpool players all season, once again manifested itself.
Everton were simply all over them with the exception of odds intervals, and only received their desserts when Young, receiving from the extreme right, first equalised and then, receiving from the extreme left, gave his side the lead – each goal being a beauty and splendidly worked for.
True, Liverpool pressed hotly in the next few minutes, and appeared to have won a clear penalty when Harry Makepeace handled. But the referee could not award this if he did not see it. This was the last straw, and in the closing 15 minutes Liverpool were simply run off their feet.
Some screws loose.
It was a most meritorious win for Everton. Maurice Parry and Sam Raybould had been left out in favour of Robinson and John Carlin. I take it, seeing they turned out on Monday v. Manchester United, whilst Alf West had a capital deputy in Percy Saul, albeit I should have preferred Tom Chorlton for this match. And if West was away, Everton were denied Jimmy Settle. No, the Reds were well beaten, and it became palpable there is more than one screw in the machinery in need of serious tightening.
With Sam Hardy, one could find no fault. He watched the enemy with an eagle eye and fielded the ball really excellently. I was not altogether smitten with Percy Saul. He lacked consistency, alternating between the very good and the moderate. Billy Dunlop once again had an “off” day against Everton – against Jack Sharp and Hardman, in particular. It is strange how Dunlop gets flurried in these events, be he called upon to oppose Sharp or Rankin. Most distinctly the popular back was below par on Saturday, and I cannot say I fancy Saturday’s two backs as a pair. They don’t – or didn’t – make a happy blend.
Another weak spot was Liverpool’s middle line. James Bradley had his hands too full, Alex Raisbeck (usually the figure-head in these events) was only common-place, and even Robert Robinson was not quite the hoped-for success. Facts is, they caught the Everton vanguard at the top of their form. Neither John Cox nor John Carlin pleased. Then Jack Parkinson was erratic, a big fault being his feeding of the Everton backs. I should set Arthur Goddard down as the best of a disappointing line. But taking the team as a whole they were altogether too lacking in dash for the Blue.
To Everton, congratulations! It was the real Everton. To my mind the feature of the game was the display given by Harold Harman (a doubtful starter, too!), and the success of George Wilson as his inside partner. A stranger to the berth Wilson was naturally a trifle anxious at first, but in the second half his work indeed proved a revelation. It also went to prove the writer’s assertion to an Everton official that “a real class player should shine in any position.”
Of Harold Harman, I said so many nice things in last week’s report of that player – who first caught my eye on Anfield when with Blackpool – that one scarcely knows what to add. The term “champagne of football,” “a gem,” “a pocket Hercules” (of new design) were all well-earned.
When he was a Blackpool Seasider, I referred to Hardman as a likely “catch” for one of our local clubs. He was all that was pleasing on his old hunting ground on Saturday. On the whole Young had another day out at the expense of Raisbeck, despite his inaccurate first-half shooting; for he made the amende honourable afterwards. Also he bore knocks innumerable with good grace. Remembering his physique one wonders how Young manages to come up “smiling” each week.
Hugh Bolton played delightfully to Sharp in the second half, and the County cricketer responded nobly. Of the others, I should single out Walter Abbott, Billy Scott, and William Balmer in the order named as the three greatest successes.
Drowned out at Anfield.
Ill-luck continues to dog the steps of the Lancashire Cup competition. At Anfield, on Monday, two fairly good teams were turned out. Indeed, Manchester United had only two changes from Saturday – Charles Sagar and Arkesden for Jack Allan and John Picken.
Liverpool (after Saturday’s reverse) tried Tom Chorlton at left half, William Macpherson inside right, Jack Parkinson centre, and Jack Lipsham outside left. All went well until the second half was well advanced, when the heavens opened, the rains descended, and beat upon spectators, players, and officials so mercilessly that everyone rushed for shelter.
The deluge ceased somewhat, and another 15 minutes’ play took place, when again the floods came. Then it brightened up, and the waiting four thousand spectators expected a finish. The Liverpool players re-appeared, but no United, so the Reds quitted the arena for the third and last time.
It transpired that the United players were found the bath when signalled to resume, and refused to dress again for the fray. The game was not an enjoyable one owing to the early one-back game tendencies displayed by the visitors, Bob Bonthron proving a past master in this respect. The home forwards utterly failed to tumble to the altered condition of things, and I am becoming more than ever convinced that our professional footballers do not trouble much in studying the offside rule. Surely, it is not an impossible, or even a difficult, matter for players to endeavour to keep behind (if only a matter of inches) their comrades in possession of the ball! With Liverpool sometimes imitating the enemy re the one-back game, small wonder the spectators became weary.
Jack Parkinson (who is fond of Lancashire Cup-tie goals) scored three points and Sam Raybould one, the latter also having two disallowed whilst Sagar put on United’s goal. Bonthron filled the eye pretty completely one way and another, whilst Charlie Roberts and George Wall were also shining lights.
William Macpherson shaped very creditably as partner to Arthur Goddard. He has a capital knowledge of the game, and plied his man cleverly. Lipsham (who is only on the small side) also accomplished some neat things. Maurice Parry I did not care for at centre half, but Robert Robinson played well, as did Chorlton. The latter is worth an extended trial.
(Source: Cricket and Football Field: October 6, 1906)