Training at Liverpool football ground, Anfield

January 8, 1913
Liverpool F.C. members were out training yesterday, and I had a view of the work they were doing. The side has had some long journeys over the holidays, and the men have undoubtedly gone a bit stale through the stress of work and the heavy grounds upon which they have acted. However, the Reds believe they will recover their “second wind,” and they are firm believers in home training for a match of the description of the first round.

Sam Gilligan doubtless has a few “home truths” to throw out on his usual caustic style, but the Reds fear not, and believe in their own ability to get beyond the first stage of the Cup. Their opponents will not lack for vocal support, as excursion trains are being run from Bristol, and the Citizens will be well welcomed. The training when I arrived at the ground was sprinting and ball punching. There were some members on the plot of land at the back of the grand stand, while others preferred the soft turf which lies around the touchline.

In the officers’ room were Dr James Ferguson and Mr. Tom Watson, and they did not seem perturbed about the match. They believed that their side was a hard-striving and useful one, one having weight and much ability. Talk upon topics led to the discussion of home and away training, and Mr. Watson pointed to the time the Reds were taken to a spot near the Bristol Channel – and the men lost to Bristol City.

Mr. Watson declares that the men had no facility for training, and their condition on the day of the match was due in a degree to that failure. Then the doctor declared that it took a man a week to get used to the unusual foodstuffs that are provided at hotels, and said that a player could not be fit if he changed his diet a few days before the match; while the change of scenery was counteracted by lack of “home” life.

Ephraim Longworth sprinted round, and the genial captain was asked if he felt any ill-effects from his injury. He replied “No.” The first round winners received £2 per man. Ernest Peake was bothered with a nasty trouble, but it is highly improbable that he will be kept out of harness on Saturday. The full backs, Sam Speakman and Frank Grayer – two very good defender, who were picked up at small price – were sprinting, and William Lacey, too, was among the number. The Irishman seems to have been out of football for a long time although he made one or more appearances at Christmas time.
(Source: Liverpool Echo: January 8, 1913)

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