April 6, 1945
Matt Busby, Jim Harley and Billy Liddell, Liverpool’s three Scottish internationals, are certain to play in tomorrow’s North Cup second round tie first “leg,” with Manchester City, at Anfield. Manager Mr. George Kay made this welcome announcement today and so solved all the team troubles.
Berry Nieuwenhuys, the South African forward, still suffering from a thigh injury and is unable to play, but Phil Taylor is recalled and the team certainly looks good enough to establish for Liverpool lead sufficient to carry them to the third round.
Liverpool will not make final choice until 2-30 tomorrow, when the directors will hold a meeting the ground, but the fact that the stars will present reflects great credit on the Industry of Mr. Kay, who has worked unceasingly all the week to ensure securing representative side.
Liverpool are sole survivors of the Merseyside cup contenders and tackle the team which last season conquered them after the marathon game at Anfield.
An outstanding event in tomorrow football card” is the South Cup Final at Wembley, where Millwall, who have won only two matches this season, will try to upset the favourites, Chelsea. However, that game pales into insignificance so far as the north is concerned, for here centre interest on the eight cup games and Anfield in particular.
Our other clubs turn Football League matters, and seeing that have Everton. Liverpool and Wrexham the first six positions have good chance of landing the prize.
To revert to our immediate cup game, we find Liverpool essentially optimistic about their tie with the City, who knocked them out the competition last season after the Anfield marathon tie.
Liverpool know that they must travel to Manchester next week without Busby, Liddell and Harley, three vital units in their team. The Hampden international outs across these cup-ties, imposing hardships on club officials already laced with innumerable problems.
Attack, Reds, attack.
The defensive attributes Liverpool revealed in their two cup games with Everton will, in opinion, prove too good for the City attack, but what is needed just a little more effectiveness in attack.
In the Everton games – l am referring only to the North Cup games – too much was left to Liddell, for others bad defence paramount their minds. Now tomorrow Liverpool must concentrate more scoring goals than preventing them.
I have that visit to Maine Road in mind, and to have chance of survival Liverpool must be two or three goals up at the end of tomorrow’s game. Therefore, I do ask for the persistent exploitation of the two danger spearheads in Liddell and Welsh. Don has allowed his flair for the quick burst through and shot to be sacrificed aid defence, but in this game it behoves Welsh to get back his best job and leave the holding of City to others.
Personally, I expect much of Welsh in this game, for he will have no Jack Grant to worry him, and given the slightest bit of latitude can win a match off his own bat. The Reds’ aptitude for adroit and perfect covering in defence convinces me that they can win, and the only need is for that win to be emphatic.
The two league clashes between the clubs do not give us any real guide, for both ended in 2-2 draws. The City still hope for Herd and Doherty, but I am assured that Doherty extremely doubtful.
The match is due at three o’clock and we should get 90 minutes high-powered thrills. The gates will be opened at 1.30 p.m., and as transport is restricted I advise all to get to the ground as early possible, form orderly Queues and tender exact money, for it all helps in the easy handling of the crowd, which may touch the 50,000 mark.
Liverpool (from): Alf Hobson, Jim Harley, Jeff Gulliver, Matt Busby, Harry Kaye, Laurie Hughes, Jack Pilling, Jack Campbell, Phil Taylor, Billy Liddell, Don Welsh, Horace Cumner, Harry Eastham, Les Shannon.
Manchester City (from): Frank Swift, Gordon Clark, Jack Bray, Willie Walsh, Eric Eastwood, Les McDowall, Maurice Dunkley, George Smith, Billy Williamson, Peter Doherty, Alex Herd, King.
(Evening Express: April 6, 1945)