Anfield happenings (November 5, 1910)

November 5, 1910
The worst has happened – the Livers are at the bottom of the League, and we have to lament another home defeat.

It is disheartening to have to write week after week in a pessimistic tone, yet the players compel it for they have shown such poor form that there seems to be no gleam of comfort for the future. Four times they have been defeated at home, and we seem to have returned to the dark days of seven years ago.

The Spurs’ Hand
The hand was very much in evidence in the match and the Spurs held the trump card seeing that at the finish they carried away two points. “Hands” gave Liverpool a perfect chance in the form of a penalty kick, but they failed, through Parkinson, to take advantage of it. A case of hands against Crawford, however, led to disasters for the free kick was never properly cleared, and Minter finally scored the first goal.

Although Liverpool did the bulk of the attacking their opponents led at half time. The lead should have been the other way about if the home team had possessed a marksman. Several chances went a-begging, and Brough was a great sinner.

Minor Accidents
There were several minor accidents to players in the second half – the most serious happening to Robinson, who had to leave the field. Before he did so Brough had equalised, the goal being really due to Parkinson, whose persistence enabled him to give the inside right the ball in such a position that even he could not fail to net it.

While, however, the right half was in the dressing room another disaster occurred, for Humphrey’s scored, although it seemed to me that for the only time during the game Hardy was at fault. It was after this incident that the Reds really woke up, but try as they would they could not get the ball through.

Time and again the Spurs’ defence was tied up, but it managed to untie itself and wriggle out of the most desperate situations. How the back succeeded on one occasion in putting the ball over the cross bar when standing in the mouth of the goal savoured for the miraculous, while several shots went right across the goal and missed by hair’s breadth.

To the Victors the Spoils
The play for most of the hour and a half took place in the Tottenham territory. And Liverpool should have won easily. But they lacked in one particular – they could not get goals. It is the most important part of the game, and to spectators the best. Tottenham realised this, for although they shot less frequently they were better on the target. The forwards play pretty football, the inside men being clever, and the wingers speedy, while Humphreys makes a good leader.

“Darkie” Darnell was the best of the halves, especially in providing, for Kennedy and Morris were spoilers more than anything else. The full backs were not great, Bulling, the new man being the better, and Joyce, although he made several good saves, did not strike me as particularly brilliant. The Spurs won because they took advantage of the lapses of Liverpool.

The Ineptitude of Liverpool
It is difficult to understand the Reds. They are clever enough to make chances, but not to take advantage of them. The same tale has to be told as in previous games – the inside forwards cannot shoot. An open goal is no use to them – if it were twice as wide they would, I think, fail.

Although the defence is not perfect, blame for the home defeats does not rest on their shoulders. Against Bradford City, Nottingham Forest, and Tottenham, had the forwards taken half their chances they would have won easily.

On Saturday, Hardy did many good things, and both Longworth and Crawford, although they made mistakes, kicked and tackled well. But Harrop alone of the halves rose above mediocrity. Chorlton being the weakest man the Reds have had this season. Forward, Uren, and Goddard sustained their reputation as clever wingers, although both had to forage too much. Parkinson never seemed himself, and Brough and Orr again failed.

Goal Scorers for Liverpool.
LEAGUE – Parkinson 5, Brough 3, Stewart 1, Orr 1, Gilligan 1, Harrop 1, Peake 1. Total 13.
COMBINATION – Gilligan 4, Bowyer 3, Leavey 3, Brough 1, Speakman 1, Peake 1, Stewart 1. Total 14.
FRIENDLIES – Speakman 5, Brough 4, Bowyer 3, Thompson 3, Leavey 2, Connell 2, Uren 1. Total 20.
(Joint Everton and Liverpool Match Programme: November 5, 1910)

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