January 1, 1916
Writing in the “Sporting Chronicle,” on Wednesday, “J.C.” has the following interesting “peep behind the scenes” in connection with the football scandal: –
There was a quarrel in the dressing-room of the Liverpool team when one half of the men confessed what they had done, and the other half declared that they would not be parties to any such arrangement. There was a strong section in favour of an honest game, and matters reached such a pitch that the real footballers of Liverpool refused to play. Obviously the plotters could not go on the field by themselves.
The honest group only consented to waive their objection when it was realised that there was a huge crowd around the arena, and that if there was no match there would possibly be a riot and much damage. It will be remembered that the match took place on Good Friday, and that thousands of spectators were present – not only keenly interested in the rivalry of the two cities, but also in the effort of Manchester United to escape relegation. What made the match look real was that there were men in each team determined to do their duty, and the difficulty of the rogues was to keep the ball away from the honest men when they were so placed as to be likely to affect the result. I have felt it right to mention these facts, because they show the great difficulty of arranging a match with the whole team.
(Source: Star Green ‘Un: January 1, 1916)