Season preview 1909-10: Liverpool F.C. (Athletic News)


August 23, 1909
It is difficult to express with any degree of accuracy the prospects of the Anfielders for the coming season. The wearisome experiences of last year tried the loyalty of the club’s supporters to the core, and that wholesale changes were necessary became patent long before the end of April.

Both from a playing point of view and financially the season was a failure, and for the first time in the club’s career no dividend was declared by the directors. At the annual meeting one change was made on the board, and subsequently the resignation of the chairman, Mr. Edwin Berry, was accepted.

In spite of this, and appeal by Mr. John McKenna for pecuniary support to tide over the summer needs met with a magnificent response, and having this established their position the directors commenced the weeding-out process amongst their players.

Maurice Parry and Alex Raisbeck were transferred to Partick Thistle, George Latham to Southport Central, and William Hunter to Sunderland.

Donald Sloan, the reserve custodian accepted the position of manager-player for Belfast Distillery, while Percy Saul migrated to Coventry, Alf West to Reading, and Mike Griffin and James Hughes to Crystal Palace. Messina Allman, Harry Grantham, and Ted Hughes were likewise not retained.

This considerable efflux of players left ample room for newcomers, and the latter include the following names: –
John Dunlop (5ft. 9½ in., 11st), a left full back from Hurlford, is a brother of the better known Billy Dunlop, who has been such a zealous servant for the Anfielders for many years. Should he equal the feats of his elder brother, J. Dunlop will be a very useful footballer for Liverpool,

The half-back division is expected to be strengthened by the acquisition of John McConnell, of the Airdrieonians (5ft. 8in., 10st. 8lb.), who can play with equal facility on either wing. Jim Harrop and James Bradley are of course, certainties for inclusion in the League eleven, and I have great confidence in Ernest Peake, the Welsh international, who should develop into a fine centre half-back. The veteran Robert Robinson will also be available.

Provision has been made for possible changes in the forward line. Of the old brigade, Arthur Goddard, Joe Hewitt, and Ronald Orr have been retained. John Macdonald (5ft. 9in., 11st. 7lb.), who has been obtained from Glasgow Rangers, can play on the extremities of either wing.

Herbert Macpherson (5ft. 9in., 11st.), from Partick Thistle, comes with a reputation as a clever inside right.

James Stewart (5ft. 6½in., 10st. 10lb.), from Motherwell, is an acknowledged inside left of ability, while William Morris (5ft. 7in., 10st. 10lb.), a centre forward from Lincoln City, and James Lawson (5ft. 6½in., 10st. 4lb.), an inside forward from Southport Central, may have opportunities of demonstrating their real worth.

Another promising forward is James Speakman, who played frequently for the reserves last season at outside right. He hails from Prescot, and should secure a chance of promotion, for his style greatly resembles that of Goddard.

In addition there are Sam Bowyer, who was never generously tried last winter; Jack Parkinson, the Bootle player who had one glorious season two years ago at centre-forward; Bertram Goode, late of Chester; and the Liverpool football, Harold Uren, who has now joined the professional ranks, to draw upon, so that the club ought not to be short of capable aspiring forwards.

The defence should be in good hands, seeing that Sam Hardy is again in goal, with Gus Beeby, the Derbyshire youth, as his understudy. Tom Chorlton, Robert Crawford, Tom Rogers, and Billy Dunlop are full back of tried ability, and the material at the disposal of the club seems sufficient to meet every emergency.
(Source: Athletic News: August 23, 1909)

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