The champions routed


April 21, 1917
It was the sixth meeting of the Merseyside clubs, and the day being fine and bright a large crowd assembled at Goodison Park to cheer on their own particular favourites. Mr. Walter Chadwick, brother of Edgar, the old fashioned member, was referee.

Teams:
Everton: Tommy Fern, Joe Smith, Bob Thompson, Tom Fleetwood, Billy Wareing, Alan Grenyer, Murray, Frank Jefferis, Ernie Gault, Joe Clennell, Joe Donnachie.
Liverpool: Tommy Haughton, Ephraim Longworth, Tommy Lucas, John Bamber, Walter Wadsworth, Donald Mackinley, Arthur Goddard, Tom Page, Tommy Bennett, Harry Lewis, Tommy Cunliffe.

A Goal in a Minute
There were sensations in the first minute, T. Page of South Liverpool, appeared for Metcalf (suspended for one week), and Clennell scored in sixty seconds. The goal came through a corner kick conceded by Longworth, Murray lobbing the ball to Jefferis and finally seeing the ball taken from Murray by Mackinlay. Murray does not does not take those things lying down. He followed up, and although Mackinlay must have known this feature of Murray’s play at a consequence of the recent holiday games, he dallied awhile, and Murray regained possession. The ball was crossed, and Clennell, feinting to move up the right, turned slightly to the left and scored with a shot that Haughton handled, but only pushed to the roof of the net. One up and eighty-nine to go.

The goal unbalanced Liverpool for a long time and served to give confidence to the Everton team. There was no startling point for some minutes, albeit there was nervousness all round. Tom Page showed resource and Bennett was quite close with a hook shot of some height. Donnachie was at fault for once in a way with a centre, and when Lucas fell lame Longworth hit an opponent with an attempted clearance, the result being that Gault had a chance to score. Haughton advanced to meet the centre’s shot, and it was well that he did, for he fumbled badly, and, moreover, lost sight of the ball, which was inches off the line, and behind Haughton. Fortunately for Liverpool, Haughton found the ball and smothered it when Gault followed up.

There were other raids on the Liverpool defence, and some extraordinary escapes. Mackinley stopped Gault, Lucas returned, Haughton made a one-handled punch, Longworth on the goal-line kicked out. Jefferis changed the goalkeeper to the back net, and finally Gault scored after twenty-one minutes from a lovely pass by Donnachie. Haughton left his goal when he saw danger coming, but he in an uncertain mood, and adopted the “he loves, he loves me not.” He did not make a decision and stick to it, and the result was that he was in two minds when faced by Gault.

The champions were overplayed, thanks to the fine form of the Everton forwards and half backs and the moderate form of the Liverpool half-back. It must be mentioned that Lucas had gone very lame, but that did not account for the tremendous difference in the standard of play. Donnachie crossed the ball and offered a goal, but no one accepted it, and after Haughton had saved a fine volley by Gault, the home centre scored with a shot that left Haughton bewildered.

Four Up.
The time was thirty minutes, and Lucas thought it wise to retire. There were only one word for Everton today, they had toyed with their opponents, and the Liverpool forwards had never really got going. Everton went out for a bag of goals, and six minutes after the last point Clennell scored, and the pleasure took away some of the pain that a damaged foot caused him. T. Page was also damaged, but don’t imagine the game had been rough. It had been hard, and keen, and Mr. Chadwick had no difficulty in control.

Half-time; Everton 4, Liverpool 0.

MaConnachie an Onlooker
Jock MaConnachie was a spectator of the game today. The Flying Corps man looks in fine fettle.

Not A Shot to Stop
Anyone could have kept goal as well as Fern in the first half –he had not a shot to stop. The game had not been resumed one moment before Fern was engaged to clear a nice try by Bennett, which he did in his usual safe manner. Lucas was still absent when the game was restarted, but there was no health in the Anfield man, and Gault scored after 47 minutes with a snap chance and a low ball. Haughton made one brilliant save when Jefferis tried a long drive dead on the mark.

Too One-Sided.
The game was too one-sided to be interesting, and only the continued earnestness of the champions kept the game from falling flat. Not for a long time has a local Derby resulted in a five clear goals victory, but I remember that margin at Anfield and Goodison. Still the question for those without the book at their side was whether by scoring again, Everton would break a record.

Liverpool were of course, playing the one back game, and I saw at least one member of the Liverpool side loss heart to such as extent that he did not strive for a short time. There was some spirit put into the game when Wadsworth who had not had a happy day, want very close with a well-delivered header.

Casual Comments.
Football’s fitful season is rapidly drawing to its close. It has been a valiant struggle to keep the game going with all its pre-war protégé – and the strenuous afford had been crowned with success.

Our two leading organisations have offered a bold front against that were often insidious in their bearing, and this afternoon they met in the last of a wonderfully successful series of encounters.

These recurring matches between the two great rivals have provoked in some quarters the sneers of the self-styled cynics, but the answer of the whole hearted spectators is sweeping in its condemnation of all carping critics.

This afternoon’s attendance showed clearly that the populace –naval, military, and civilian –rejoiced in witnessing yet another encounter between the wearers of the Blue and Red jerseys-and if the populace is satisfied let the patrician go bang!

Everton were the first to make the appearance and the elusive graphing that struggled through the back ground of clouds lent a lighter colour to the Oxford blue of their jerseys.

Liverpool led by Longworth followed immediately after, and the preliminaries were soon arranged. The home captain lost the toss, but in the twinkling of an eye this very questionable disability was more than compensated for.

The Everton vanguard, marshalling themselves, in the most approved battle array moved swiftly yet easily forward and in less time than it takes to tell Clennell.

The Notorious Snapper-up of unconsidered trifles, drove the ball into a corner of the net. The packed stand behind this goal seemed to shake with the reverberations of it, compacts, and for just one second we saw the same fiery spirit of partisanship fluming for as in the olden days of fiercer fights and less calculated judgement.

A brave rally on the part of the Liverpoolians raised “hopes that but allude the fly for joy vanished on the lips” of the Anfielders when Thompson butted in and completely crabbed the pitch. This mixed metaphor from Moore and the land of Old Glory may be excused at a time when the Stars and Stripes are everywhere flying in the breeze.

And the allusion is not so inopportune as it may at first blush seem. That time is not far distant – mark my words – when American teams will be doing friendly battles on most of the famous football enclosures in the country. While offering these observation, “Bee,” in another column is telling you the savarnished tale of the proceedings  –how Everton were monopolising the play and how Liverpool were so seldom in the venture.

The Anfield left wing pair were persistent in their endeavour to retrieve the fallen fortunes of their side, but they met with woefully weak support, and it was not long before the tide of battle surged forward again in favour of the home team.

They proceeded to mass their attacks in the most approved formation and a great shout rent the now dull canopy of cloud when Gault, showing his paces like a prize hackney that appreciates its own true word, trotted through all opposition and scored a glorious goal.

Has it ever struck you how curiously cruel crowds are! They are invariably on the side of the victors, woe to the conquered.” So it was this moving afternoon. The Everton players stirred on by the approving plaudits of the plebeians, literally bombarded the Liverpool goal, and when Gault again came through and found the target the onlookers seemed to cheer on.

Yet there were many Anfield supports present and their dejected air and long faces were pitiful to see. It may therefore have been compassion that the Everton supporters – many of them, I am afraid had goodly investment on the issue – refrained to cheer quite so wildly when Clennell added to the discomfiture of the foe by notching a fourth goal.

To sum up the first half I am relucted to constrained to say that the Liverpool players were hopelessly out of the hunt. Except on three specific occasions they never troubled the Everton defenders.

The home side on the other hand, might well have doubled their score, damaging as it was. Whatever had been their deliberations in the dressing room the Liverpool returned on the field of play with an obvious plan of campaign?

In the first forty seconds they attempted to rush the Everton goal, and a short swift shot from Bennett nearly beat the home keeper. This sudden and violent assault was obviously resented by the Goodison Park brigade and they immediately retaliated by going through in sweeping style and adding a fifth goal through the personal of the gallivanting Gault. Nor was this all.

A fifth goal seemed but to have wet the appetites of the hungry Evertonians they proceeded to bombard the Liverpool defenders with antagonism and only felt really sorry for Longworth as he tried to manual his forms with a view to checking the rapacity of the goal-getting invaders.
(Liverpool Echo: April 21, 1917)

XX

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