December 28, 1953
Behind the £20,000 signing by Liverpool on Christmas Day of two Charlton players, full-back Frank Lock (£7,500) and inside-left John Evans (£12,500), is the story of the Manager Who Would Not Give Up.
For weeks Liverpool manager Mr. Don Welsh has, between trips to Carlisle, Scotland, Bristol, Brighton and many other places, been badgering his old manager Charlton’s Mr. Jimmy Seed, in the hope of signing one or more of his players.
On the afternoon of Christmas Eve Mr. Welsh had another go and, although the news from The Valley was not encouraging, decided to try again for Evans and Lock in an effort to keep Liverpool in the First Division, where they have been since gaining promotion in 1905.
After helping Mrs. Welsh fill the stocking of eight-year-old daughter Susan, Mr. Welsh set off on the 12.10 a.am. sleeper for London.
It was while he was disconsolately standing on the deserted Euston Underground station platform at about 8.45 Christmas morning that he got his first Christmas “box.”
There sat Lock
The train to take him to London Bridge, en route to Charlton rolled in and there, in an otherwise empty carriage, sat … Frank Lock, also on the way to The Valley. He had been staying in North-West London with his wife’s parents.
This was too good a chance to waste and by the time the pair had arrived at the ground Mr. Welsh had almost persuaded the full-back to join Liverpool.
Further discussions with the two players (neither of whom was playing against Bolton) and manager Seed followed. Five minutes from the end of the match the deal was completed.
Next move was for the players to tell their folks the news, then make a dash for the 4.15 train north, with the Charlton team, off to the return game with Bolton. The party slit up at Crewe and both the Liverpool captures were in the side who held West Bromwich to a goalless draw at Anfield on Saturday.
Liverpool have now paid out £40,000 for four players; they recently signed Dave Underwood, the Watford goalkeeper, and Geoff Twentyman, the Carlisle centre half.
(Daily Mail: December 28, 1953)