Saturday, October 29 – 1910
Capable full backs have been needed at Anfield since the days of Billy Dunlop and Alf West, before his unfortunate accident. Here we had a splendid combination; dash and daring being allied to coolness and calculation. In their endeavours to restore this desirable constitution of affairs, the Liverpool-directors turned their faces towards the South, and at Leyton discovered the player whose biography is given to-day. Whatever may be the eventual outcome of this footballer’s stay at Anfield there can be no disputing the fact that he has started in most promising fashion.
Ephraim Longworth was born at Halliwell, near Bolton, a place noted as the residence of one James Settle, formerly a familiar figure at Goodison Park. He early developed a fondness for football, and while at the Bolton St. Luke’s elementary school, played right full back for the boys’ team. Three years of this sport furnished him with some idea of the requirements of a sterling defender, and there were few better players than he in the Bolton schools. Consequently he was chosen to represent his native town against the select of Bury, Rochdale and other industrial centres.
After leaving school he joined Chorley Old Road Congregational club, which was connected with the Bolton Sunday School League, and for a season and a half was their recognised right full back. During the latter part of his second year with them, he was persuaded, while an amateur, to join Bolton St. Luke’s. This team was in the Lancashire Combination Second Division, and after finishing that season with them, Longworth stayed the following winter and gained a local reputation as being a full back of more than average ability.
The Saints disbanded at the close of the campaign, and Longworth became associated with Halliwell Rovers, who were members of the Bolton and District League. Here he remained for the first half of the season, but then joined Hyde St. George’s where he completed the year. Up to this period he had been amongst the number of the unpaid, but when the two clubs – Hyde and Hyde St. George’s – combined their forces and merged into one strong eleven, he signed a professional form for the new organisation.
The club then, however, knows s Hyde, was elected to the Second Division of the Lancashire Combination, and for a season, Longworth was their regular full back. Afterwards he returned to Bolton and played for the Wanderers. With the first team he figured in three Cup Ties – Lancashire and Manchester – but otherwise he was kept in the Reserve ranks.
His next move was to Leyton, a club in the First Division of the Southern League and here he gained further experience. The Southerners were satisfied with their right full back – Meredith – hence Longworth had to perform on the left wing, and in his first season occupied this post practically throughout the campaign.
Subsequently he was transferred to the right, and in his second season with them was operating there when brought to the notice of the Anfielders. He assisted his club to reach the final round of the London Challenge Cup Competition, in which Millwall proved successful. The losers, however, were presented with handsome medals for their achievements.
Last May, Longworth was signed by Liverpool, and made his first appearance with the League team at Bramall Lane on September 19th. Until the Everton match he was on the right wing, but at Owlerton on October 8th, showed that he was equally skilful on the left.
His displays have already secured for him a warm place in the affections of the Anfield club’s supporters. Standing 5ft. 8½in, and weighing 10st. 8lbs. he is not overburdened with avoirdupois, but is nevertheless a sturdy and reliable defender.
He possesses the quality of intelligent anticipation to a marked degree, and his ability in this direction is shown by the manner in which he forestalls and checks the intentions of his opponents. His kicking is clean and judicious; no wild aimless punt down the field, but he is imbued with the idea of placing to his own men. He has certainly added greatly to the strength of the Anfield defence and should have a prosperous future in store.
During the summer months he keeps himself fit by golfing, in which game he is an ardent enthusiast. Longworth is the right type of footballer for he is earnest and wholehearted in all that he undertakes. Both on and off the field his conduct will bear the strictest investigations, and Liverpool are to be commended upon securing such a zealous and meritorious addition to their ranks.
(Joint EFC and LFC Match Programme, 29-10-1910)