March 4, 1940
Five for Liverpool.
Liverpool made their way through to the last stage of the Liverpool Cup by a convincing 5-1 victory against Southport at Anfield before 4,000 people. But through they won easily enough in the end, Southport enjoyed moments when they might have made things distinctly uncomfortable, in face of the opposition’s superiority on paper. For instance, when, after they had reduced Liverpool’s early lead of 2-0 to 2-1, Southport missed a wonderful chance to have drawn level in the second half.
Quite apart from this case there were times when nothing could have saved the Liverpool defence save a mistake on the part of the forward in possession of the ball. Southport were obliging in every instance, except the one in which Hunt scored.
In view of the fact that many of them left their Army stations at 6 a.m. on the day of the match, Liverpool performed extremely well. Captained by Tom Bush, who was showered with confetti – he had been married earlier in the day – as he came on to the field, they celebrated the occasion with some light-hearted football and good finishing, and only in the second half did the match begun to pall.
Penalty goals by Fagan.
Fagan, who scored twice, once from the penalty spot, was probably the most successful of the front-liners, but Balmer who came back after a lengthy absence, was soon into his stride again and was a good second. He, too, scored twice, and the other goal came from Taylor.
There was no mistaking the force of Liverpool’s finishing. Stevenson had to play well to prevent other goals.
Liverpool’s defence without Tommy Cooper and Matt Busby cannot be said to have left no loopholes. Ramsden always had a bit in hand in dealing with a forward line that failed chiefly when it reached the shooting box, but one could not help but notice the number of occasions when Southport were in a scoring position.
Rothwell I though was particularly good in his approach play; indeed the line as a whole played well except for the vital errors in rounding off their work.
Liverpool: Eric Mansley, Tommy Bernard Ramsden, Jack Tennant, Stan Eastham, Tom Bush (C), Jimmy McInnes, Billy Liddell, Phil Taylor, Willie Fagan, Jack Balmer, Herman Van Den Berg.
Southport: Harry Stevenson, Jack Little, Jack Grainger, Bob Hodgkiss, Jimmy Watt, Ben Scott, Dennis Grainger, Teddy Rothwell, Hunt, Watson, Harry Tomkin.
Referee: Mr. T.E. Campbell.
(Liverpool Daily Post: March 4, 1940, by ‘L.E.E.’)