Preston North End worthy champions


June 9, 1941
Preston North End set their seal on the 1940-41 Cup and League “double” when they beat Liverpool 6-1 at Deepdale on Saturday, before 7,000 people. By the win, North End claimed the distinction of returning the best percentage – 2,189 – of any club in the country, north or south.

It has been a great season for them without doubt. Some weeks their wage bill has been as low as £12.

Preston have often been described as a team of youngsters. This is hardly correct. Theirs has been a fully experienced side with only two players still in their ‘teens. The rest have been seasoned players. Still, it has been a season of wonderful achievement.

Chairman Mr. Jim Taylor was a proud man on Saturday and justifiably so. He was especially proud of the fact that while his first team men were winning the League, he had two teams of youngsters out gaining the experience which will stand them in such good stead later.

“We insist on giving every young player of promise a chance,” said Mr. Taylor to me, “and our search of the talent field will go on throughout the summer, just as it did last summer. We do not intend to allow Preston football to stand still.”

Mr. A. Holt, K.C., paid tribute to the fine leadership of Mr. Taylor when we gathered in the boardroom after the game. Mr. Will Harrop, the Liverpool chairman, who was supported by Mr. George Richards, J.P., Mr. Ralph Milne, Liverpool’s new director, Mr. Ike Robinson, secretary of the Liverpool County FA, Mr. George Kay, and Mr. George Patterson also spoke in high terms of Mr. Taylor and North End.

Double Hat-trick.
Preston have a brilliant exhibition, especially in the opening half, when they banged on four goals. Later Liverpool gave almost as much as they took, without ever touching the delicacy of approach and conviction in finish which stamped the work of North End.

The game was a triumph for the young Scot, Andy McLaren, who bagged all six goals. It was another Scot, however, Bobby Beattie, who made the goals possible. He was the mainspring of almost every approach – a super player. Credit to McLaren, however, for being true to positional accuracy and for his whole-hearted way of banging them in.

Preston gave a perfect exhibition of high-speed football carried out with accuracy and charm.

It was not until Harry Kaye and Eddie Spicer struck their game that the Reds make a fight, although Willie Fagan once was unfortunate when a grand header came back off the bar. That was when Preston held only a goal lead. The Reds battled strongly in the second half and young Jack Lyon, loaned by Everton, scored a good consolation goal.

Lyon caught the Preston “eye.” Mr. Taylor during the game asked me all the ins and out of “this young outside left.” Liverpool would have fared better had they given better support to Billy Liddell and Lyon. They were the prime raiders and marksmen, but too long were left unattended in the way of working material.

I again liked Kaye and Dennis Cooke, while Ray Lambert and Bob Paisley forge ahead.
(Evening Express: June 9, 1941)

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