Season preview 1912-13: Liverpool F.C. (Athletic News)

August 26, 1912
Having escaped the clutches of the Second Division by the merest margin last April, it is only natural to suppose that the Liverpool team will enjoy a most successful season. A see-saw policy has been characteristic of the Anfielders for many winters, and they may, with truth, be designated as an extremist eleven. This may appear an interesting position to occupy, but the officials of the club will probably have other ideas on the subject. Their critical state last season led to the club making deals with their Everton rivals, and they secured the transfer of William Lacey and Tom Gracie for that of Harold Uren.

Liverpool do not appear too well equipped in the matter of goalkeepers, and should Kenneth Campbell be incapacitated, a most serious situation would immediately arise. In the reserve team is the local custodian, Peter Malone, but a great risk is being run in relying upon one first-class performer. There are rumours of negotiations with another capable keeper, but at present nothing definite has transpired in this direction.

At full back Ephraim Longworth and Robert Pursell are certain to start the season, and the pair should do well together. Robert Crawford has been retained, and he is a rare emergency man, while three new recruits have been signed to further strengthen the defence. Two of these, Walter Wadsworth and Sam Speakman, are locals, and a third Frank Grayer, comes from South Brighton. The defection of Sam Hardy and Jim Harrop seemed at first sight a serious blow to Liverpool, but with Campbell shaping so splendidly in goal the resultant effects were considerably minimised.

To fill Harrop’s place at centre half-back, Bob Ferguson, of Third Lanark, was acquired, but he has a difficult role to fill. This position in recent years has been in charge of Alex Raisbeck and Jim Harrop respectively, and it is no easy matter to successfully follow such a pair. Ferguson will have to display exceptional form to maintain the tradition of this department of the team.

Otherwise there appears to have been ample provision made for placing a strong eleven on the field, for the forward line has been stimulated by the acquisition of Jack Tosswill (Queens Park Rangers), Arthur Metcalf (Newcastle United), and Alex Thomson (East Stirlingshire). In the practice games the latter has exhibited particularly fine work at centre-forward, and against the probable League defence has shaped splendidly.

With Jimmy Stewart again inside right, and Arthur Berry, the amateur international, returning to his first League love, there is plenty of material available for the selection of a strong frontal division, and it is possible that the right half-back position may prove the only place where experiments will have to be tried.

Of the players who have migrated, in addition to Hardy and Harrop, who will assist the Villa, there are Tom Chorlton, not yet fixed up, and Tom Rogers, who has signed for Tranmere Rovers. The half-back John McConnell has gone to Aberdeen, and of the forwards the following changes have occurred: – Sam Bowyer (Bristol City), Harold Uren (Everton), John Macdonald (Newcastle United), and Joe Brough (Bristol City), while William Stuart and Stanley Rowlands have joined the Wrexham club.

The players engaged for the season include the following: –
Kenneth Campbell
5ft. 10½in. and 11st. 8lb.

Peter Malone
5ft. 9in. and 10st. 6lb.

Robert Crawford
Full back;
5ft. 8in. and 10st. 13½lb.

Ephraim Longworth
Full back;
5ft. 8in. and 11st. 1½in.

Frank Grayer
South Brighton;
Full back;
6ft. and 12st. 8lb.

Sam Speakman
Full back;
5ft. 8½in. and 11st. 2lb.

Walter Wadsworth
Full back;
5ft. 10½in. and 10st. 11lb.

Robert Pursell
Full back;
5ft. 10½in. and 12st. 2lb.

Donald Mackinlay
Half back;
5ft. 8in. and 11st. 11½lb.

Bob Ferguson
Half back;
5ft. 10in. and 11st. 8lb.

James Scott
Half back;
5ft. 9¾in. and 11st. 8½lb.

Ernest Peake
Half back;
5ft. 7½in. and 10st. 7lb.

Ralph Holden
Half back;
5ft. 7in. and 10st. 7lb.

Robert Robinson
5ft. 9½in. and 13st.

Arthur Goddard
5ft. 9¾in. and 12st. 3lb.

Jimmy Stewart
5ft. 6½in. and 11st. 7½lb.

Jack Parkinson
5ft. 8in. and 10st. 12lb.

Jack Tosswill
5ft. 11in. and 12st. 6½lb.

Alex Thomson
5ft. 7in. and 10st. 3lb.

Arthur Metcalf
5ft. 6¾in. and 11st.

Sam Gilligan
5ft. 9½in. and 11st. 12¾lb.

William Lacey
5ft. 9in. and 11st. 8lb.

Tom Gracie
5ft. 8½ in. and 12st. 1lb.

Tom Miller
5ft. 8½in. and 11st. 5lb.

James Speakman
5ft. 8in. and 11st. 4½lb.

John Bovill
5ft. 7in. and 11st. 2½lb.
(Source: Athletic News: August 26, 1912)

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.