Niggling doubt at Anfield


August 6, 1958
You cannot blame them if a niggling doubt exists for the time being at Anfield these days. All set for what they hope to be promotion season, with new boy Fred Morris giving the right wing more punch, everyone must wait for authority to say what period of suspension, if any, Morris will get as a result of his being ordered off last back-end when a Mansfield player. Thus, there is threat – one hopes it does not amount to more – of Liverpool being without Morris for a time, in which case they would certainly have to reshuffle their attacking forces with the possibility of places being found for either Alan Arnell or Louis Bimpson.

If Liverpool found themselves unable, for a time, to play a newly-signed player they would keep company with friends and neighbours across the Park. Everton must suffer the handicap of being without their new full back Alex Parker, whose Service duties have taken him to Cyprus of places. Not an auspicious start to the new season, but a victory or two at both or city grounds would soon erase any disappointment.

Harley’s was classic case
For a newly-joined footballer ordered when playing with his previous club to receive suspended sentence would be a novel thing. The classic case in the past was, I suppose, that of the former Liverpool back, Jim Harley, the best-built athlete I ever saw and professional sprinter of such merit he once won the famous Powderhall handicap.

Harley was sent off the field when playing for Liverpool against Chelsea at Anfield in the last pukka League match before the War. Next day, at 10 a.a. or thereabouts Mr. Neville Chamberlain told us we were at War and Harley’s case never came up in years when we all had much more to think about than football suspensions.

Most of the Liverpool players of that time were already in the T.A. and were in uniform within a few days. Harley, from the mining town of Methil, in Fife, resolutely refused to join the Territorials arguing that if was came he would prefer to serve in the Navy. And he did … and he probably saw more action at Dunkirk in a destroyer, than most of his team-mates who were waiting for the phoney war to end. Indeed Harley’s gallantry was recognised.

After the war he resumed with the rest of them and nothing was ever said of his crime, whatever it was, of the Chelsea match.
(Source: Liverpool Echo: August 6, 1958)

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