Referee’s dilemma: Everton 3, Liverpool 3


January 6, 1930
I seem to witness fated witness decisions by referees which make onlookers doubt the evidence of their eyes. It is said that those looking on see most of the game. In the majority of questionable cases I give best to the referee, but at Goodison I had a very clear view of an incident which in the light of after-events, had a vital bearing on the issue between Everton and Liverpool.

However, take it singly. Ten minutes of tame play. Then Bromilow, Hopkin, and Macpherson did the good old triangular movement. The last named went along and crossed square. Smith sweeping upon the ball like an eagle and driving it home.

The better view.
Beside the Liverpool centre-forward was the referee, who walked towards the circle, pointing definitely for a goal. But a linesman stood, the picture of “Excelsior,” flag aloft. Upon his attention being called an Everton player, the referee walked across, and after consultation reversed his decision. In my opinion it was the picture of a legitimate goal. Where I do quarrel with the official is in changing his mind after being in a better position than either linesman to know whether Smith was off-side or not. At that time the Liverpool half-backs interposed among the Everton forwards, and dispossessed them with an almost nonchalant ease on ground like glue, and playing against a nasty wind and the rain. Weighing up the circumstances – Everton in in depression and Liverpool at the height of their season’s power – one could visualize the Anfield team just going through their local foes with the Inspiration early goal. The irony of it was that three minutes after this Everton respite Critchley caught the ball crossed by Dean, as it rebounded from Lucas, and gave Everton the lead. The effect was rejuvenating. Dean, subdued yet subtle, headed low for the net as only he can. Riley made an extraordinary catch, falling wide to the ball.

A goal a minute.
To the Liverpool backs there was everything in a name where Dean – though limping in the second half – was concerned. They generally retreated before him. The defenders were out of alignment when Stein centred, and Dean slashed the ball home from the right-hand post. Straightaway Edmed converted from Hopkin, only for Dean apparently dilatory, to mesmerize Jackson and Lucas and slip the ball through at leisure. This meant three goals in as many minutes, and Everton holding a 3-1 margin. Liverpool are bonny fighters. Their magnificent retaliation, with everything appearing to run against them, gave to this game a dramatic redeeming value. For the most part it was hard, but drab on this kind of occasion, suggesting a legacy of the holiday toil. Thus, Hopkins hit the post. Again, Liverpool came full tilt. Macpherson head glided the ball past the unsighted Davies. Then a corner from which McDougall levelled the scores – two goals in two minutes.

Near victory.
In the remaining dozen minutes Liverpool volleyed and thundered. Somehow the goal escaped, even when Edmed had it to himself. There is a deal of satisfaction to be obtained from such a division between local teams. Good fortune was Everton’s – and about time they may say. Generally, their defence was the more convincing. Cresswell being the best back, cool and fertile. For all its troubled McPherson, making his debut for Everton, this battle might have been a practice match. The art was in his feet, but his tackling had not enough spirit. When Liverpool came with storm tactics the home half-backs wilted. As usual, the forwards played some stylish football, but it required a Dean to finish it off. On the other hand, Liverpool are a well-welded team. They have the Cup bearing, and assuredly all its means in the way of determination. No outlook is too forlorn for them challenge.

Everton: Arthur Davies, Warney Cresswell, Jack O’Donnell, Tom Robson, Hunter Hart, Lachlan McPherson, Ted Critchley, Jimmy Dunn, Dixie Dean, Arthur Rigby, Jimmy Stein.
Liverpool: Arthur Riley, James Jackson, Tommy Lucas, Tom Morrison, Jimmy McDougall, Tom Bromilow, Dick Edmed, Gordon Hodgson, Jimmy Smith, Archie Macpherson, Fred Hopkin.
Referee: Mr. A.J. Caseley, Wolverhampton.
(Source: Athletic News: January 6, 1930)

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