Sunderland v Liverpool 1-2 (League match: January 3, 1914)

January 3, 1914
Match: Football League, First Division, at Roker Park, kick-off: 14:00.
Sunderland – Liverpool 1-2 (0-1).
Attendance: 15,000.
Referee: Mr. J.H. Palmer; linesmen: Messrs. G.H. Mason and W.E. Dean.
Sunderland (2-3-5): Joe Butler; Bert Hobson, Harry Ness; Frank Cuggy, Charlie Thomson, Harry Low; Bobby Best, Charlie Buchan, James Richardson, George Holley, Jackie Mordue.
Liverpool (2-3-5): Kenneth Campbell; Ephraim Longworth, Robert Pursell; Thomas Fairfoull, Harry Lowe, Donald Mackinlay; Jack Sheldon, William Lacey, Jack Parkinson, Tom Miller, James Dawson.
The goals: 0-1 Sheldon (20 min.), 0-2 Parkinson (46 min.), 1-2 Richardson (88 min).

It was as unexpected as it was pleasant to the Liverpool folk. They had hardships to endure, but they would not mind them when they had taken two valuable points from a team that last season rubbed it into the Reds’ jackets thick and strong. Liverpool have made their advertisement of the Cup tie of Saturday next a very attractive one.

People will follow a winning team, as witness the crowd at Everton against Manchester United and Liverpool’s big home attendances, but the lapse against Bradford had rather upset Liverpool’s cause. Then suddenly they weep down on Sunderland and surprise the whole world of football.

Barnsley were seen by a colleague on Saturday, and he tells me that they are poor fry, and that Liverpool should beat the one time Cup winning side pretty easily. May that be the case.

The truth of the proverb that “Providence tempers the wind to the shorn lamb” was well exemplified in the experience of the Liverpool players last week-end.

After a most unpleasant and trying time they swooped down upon Sunderland and beat the Wearsiders handsomely by 2 goals to 1. The victory was in every sense a thoroughly well deserved one, and apart from avenging a cruel defeat not yet forgotten, it served to show that players, when well trained, may even go without a night’s rest and suffer no physical deterioration.

On this point a word of explanation is perhaps necessary. Immediately after their New Year’s engagement the Anfielders left Liverpool for Tynemouth, where it was hoped to spend a quiet and refreshing day. Unfortunately, their train was “held up” en route owing to an accident on the line, and Newcastle was not reached until after one o’clock on Friday morning.

By that time the local electric system to the seaside resort was closed, and the player spent four hours on Newcastle station before being able to proceed to their destination, which was reached at 5 a.m.

It may or may not be that the nocturnal vigil instilled a spirit of determination into the men. The fact remains that they beat their powerful antagonists by sheer grit in the second half of fast and spirited encounter.

The game was a goodly one to watch, inasmuch as it was fraught with all those changes and chances of fortune which go to make play so attractive, and at the close there was the comforting reflection that the Anfielders had won the day of their merits.

It was a stern fight – a keen struggle to the finish. Sunderland for once in a way found themselves beaten in the closing stages by a better staying side, and though they had the solatium of a goal just before the close, there is no doubt that the honours rested fairly with Liverpool.

To sum up in a sentence – Liverpool were rather fortunate in the first half, and in the second they more than justified their good fortune by playing superb football.

The Liverpool ‘keeper, in dealing with a fierce bully following upon a corner, was so badly hurt in the lower part of the body that he had to leave the field for a time, and Lacey, who donned the keepers’ jersey, acted as an admirable and alert deputy until Campbell’s reappearance.

Liverpool, meanwhile, were keeping the home spectators on tenterhooks by reason of their sprightly play, and Parkinson once netted the ball, but the referee determined that it was offside.

The Wearsiders took heart of grace by this decision, and in the last few minutes Richardson got through and scored a capital goal. Parkinson’s reappearance in the centre strengthened the forward line considerably.

Not only did he play on the backs with unflinching nerve, but he led his wings with infectious gaiety of disposition and aplomb. The right wing pair gave the home defence a rare putting up, Ness being frequently all at sea; and it required all the artful tactics of Thompson to prevent the whole forward line acting more frequently than they did in perfect combination.

The halves made a most favourable impression, Lowe maintaining his present excellent form, and MacKinlay coming through a trying ordeal with flying colours.

Of the defence, it is needless to add another word of commendation. They were responsible for Sunderland’s downfall.
(Liverpool Echo, 05-01-1914)

Frank Cuggy, Sunderland F.C.

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