March 25, 1950
Play of poker-faced Billy Liddell, of Liverpool and Great Britain, sturdiest offshoot of the Scottish minor club called Lochgelly Violet, can today decide who meets Arsenal in the FA Cup Final.
The task of muzzling the great winger goes to Eric Moore, Everton’s right back, twenty-three-year-old former glass cutter. Can Moore cut Liddell out of the semi-final at Maine Road, Manchester? He might do – if he studies the “Parkes Plan.”
Harry Parkes, modest consistent Aston Villa back, played against Liddell a fortnight ago. His mastery of the Liverpool genius was a triumph. Yesterday he explained his method: “I think the only way to stop him is to prevent him getting the ball properly under control – but not by going to intercept the pass from the wing half or inside forward.
“If they do slip the ball past you and Billy gets it you’ve had it. The only way is to have the co-operation of your wing half. He must watch the inside man while you police Liddell.
“Keep on his toes and tackle immediately.”
And what happens if Liddell switches wings this afternoon? Should Moore switch, too?
Parkes added, “With Villa, when Liddell and Payne switches Dick Dorsett and I switched too. It was a move that worked but I wouldn’t guarantee it.”
Personally where Liddell is concerned I wouldn’t care to guarantee anything. But the “Parker Plan” seems the best Everton could adopt.
Without a goal in its last three games the Liverpool attack has not been impressive recently. Most people think they will win because of the solidarity of their defence and their fine wing-halves.
Yet I take Everton, the outsiders, to win because of the exceptional spirit I saw them display in their tie at Derby. They are like Arsenal in their refusal to recognize defeat when it looms big as a grandstand in front of them.
(Source: Daily Mirror: March 25, 1950)