December 10, 1917
Referee T. Chadwick, brother of Edgar, the player, was in a pickle on Saturday. He made some points for his own delineation, and many were made for him. Mr. Chadwick is usually a firm referee. He has experience, and has a practical knowledge. Therefore I was surprised to find him accepting the words of Billy Halligan, who undoubtedly committed ungentlemanly acts by kicking the ball away – he did it twice – when it was due to be put on the centre spot for the resumption of the game.
Moreover, Halligan, must have said a lot to the referee about the “overtime” played by both teams. Yet, Halligan played on to the finish, and others were lucky enough to continue through a capital game, keen and stern, but tainted with too much “bite” and some diabolical trips.
The cause of the muddle.
Mayhap Mr. Chadwick forgot he was playing 40 minutes each way. Or was it that his clock went wrong? Certainly he forsook his linesmen’s appeal to stop the game and went two minutes overtime. In the second half he played two minutes short! What that a balancing act? The trouble from Rochdale’s viewpoint, was that Tommy Bennett completed his hat-trick in the overtime, whereas had the game been stopped “on the dot” Rochdale had a fair chance of keeping Liverpool on tenterhooks, for at that time Rochdale were steadily gaining ground, if not obtaining the upper hand.
It would seem that the influence of South Liverpool on games is ever likely to bear a “timepiece.” Tom Page (a scorer). Billy Jenkinson, Tommy Haughton, and others were present, so that one instinctly recalled the Wrexham v South cup-tie game, which was played three times, thanks to the clocking going wrong. Wrong timing is all in the game, as Liverpool know on their cost, Manchester City having scored in “overtime” at Hyde-road only a few weeks ago.
Will Rochdale complain?
Rochdale may complain, but they need not look for a favourable verdict. They had the same chance as Liverpool, and the referee’s verdict is sure to count. Still, Mr. Chadwick’s error was unfortunate, for there were other items of play that troubled the lover of “the” game without the referee’s case of misjudgement. For instance I don’t want to see a more deliberate or dangerous pitch-trip than that which Harry Millership out at Arthur Metcalf. Furthermore, there were two one-minute rounds between players – a disgracing of the game – and when a throw up occurred it seemed to me that legs were flung about with at least dangerous freedom, it not intent.
Here’s a hand to Tommy Bennett, one the despised of Everton Football Club. He scored five goals on his own, jumped to the top of the goal-getters’ ladder, and continued his goal per match record. He takes his honours quietly. Success is turning him. He recognises that all his comrades are helping him to get his desire, just as he is anxious to put the ball to them if they are better placed.
Harry Lewis very kindly refused to take a goal so that Bennett might go one step further, but Bennett could not take up the gift. It was kind of Lewis and pardonable, but it was not the game under the circumstances. It is of no avail judging the home players, all playing so well, but one must mention Jenkinson’s steady game; he is becoming more mellow in his kicks and rushes. Robert Waine, too, is inspiring, and if he will curb himself a mere trifle when on the run his play will gain in effect.
Rochdale, a team with a reputation, remember, fared well on the extreme left, where Halligan and Albert Smith made a wise wing. Pat O’Connell did not seem happy. Tom Page was given few chances, and Jim Tully was tainted. They are hefty fellows.
(Liverpool Echo: December 10, 1917)