LIVERPOOL'S SENSATIONAL VICTORY.
Liverpool's success on Saturday was one of the sweetest, which has come they way for a long time past. Since the season 1898-99, when they triumphed both at Anfield-road and Goodison-park, they have never had the satisfaction, even though they have been champions, of boasting of a League victory over the neighbours. Thus their heart's desire has not come to them out of turn. It has been a dreary wait –even an English Cup-triumph in the interval did not make amends –but now that the long-looked for win has arrived there is naturally jubilation in the Liverpool camp. Well, Evertoninans need not begrudge them the enjoyment of honours, which have been denied them for so many seasons. They have been practically surfeited with opportunities of rejoicing over the downfall of the Reds –that is in matches with the Blues. Fortunately the feeling between the two clubs is such that each wishes the other well, except when Everton and Liverpool form the contending forces. Then it is that the true spirits of local rivalry is exhibited or rather should be. Saturday's encounter, though it upset calculations to form in rude fashion, was fought out pleasantly enough, butt still with a vigour and determination that appealed to the sporting instincts of the great crowd. Liverpool won by four goals to two, on the day's play they deserved the honours, and the gratifying feature is that the 40,000 and more people who witnessed the match recognised the merit of the victors, while they were not a whit behind in appreciation of the gallant efforts of the losers.
GOAL EACH AT HALF-TIME.
While Everton were in the satisfactory position on being able to place their strongest combination in the field there were eleventh hour change in the ranks of their opponents. This was due to the uncertainty as to whether Macpherson's injured leg would stand the strain of a strenuous game. Anyhow it was decided not to run any risks, the consequence being that Chorlton was brought in at right-half. Robinson partnering Goddard, and C. Hewitt crossing over to the inside left position. Although the weather was misty, the conditions were favourable for a fine exposition of the game, and the winning of the toss was a matter of indifference to either side. J. Hewitt started operations amid subdued excitement, and the early stages placed the supporters of the Blues on good terms with themselves. Their attack soon got to work, and there was a smartness, and method about their movements which was suggestive of success. The Liverpool defenders, however, were on their best form, Saul in particular being conspicuous. By degrees the visiting forwards found their feet so to speak, and from their first real attack Cox had a chance of opening the score. It was following a free kick that Everton managed to draw first blood, Settle placing the ball against the upright and into the net while Hardy was watching Young. Everton for some time exhibited clever football than their opponents, though the dashing tactics of the latter boded danger. At last Liverpool equalised, the goal coming, as in the case of Everton, from a free kick. This time W. Balmer was penalised for fouling C. Hewitt just outside the penalty line, Raisbeck took the kick, and probably no one was more surprised –certainly no one was more gratified –than the Liverpool captain himself, when he saw the ball pass through a perfect forest of legs into the net. The interval arrived with the sides on an equality. Everton had shown the better footwork, but if anything Liverpool had more real chances of scoring.
THRILLING SECOND HALF.
If there was little enthuse over in the opening half, the second forty-five minutes produced sufficient excitement to satisfy the most expectant spectator. Moreover, it was worked up by progressive gradations, as they say in the political arena. When Robinson was led off the field after a mix-up between Taylor, W. Balmer and himself the outlook was not too promising for Liverpool. Fortunately Robinson's absence was only of brief duration, and singularly enough, with his return the Reds were more aggressive than at any stage of the proceedings. They made the pace of exceedingly warm, and it was no more than their incisive attacks deserved when C. Hewitt completely baffled Scott. But this was only the beginning of the excitement. Following a corner, Makepeace was unmarked, and he crashed the ball into the netting quite out of Hardy's reach. At this period Everton were going great guns, and it seemed as if their famous closing spurts would enable them to snatch the victory. However, Liverpool were by no means content to take it lying down, and coming again in great style, J. Hewitt put them ahead, while a chance shot by Cox, later on gilded off the post into the net and completed the Blues discomfiture.
Considering the local feelings, which naturally enters into such a contest, the game was conducted in friendly spirit and at a tremendous pace, particularly in the second half. Liverpool triumphed by reason of the invigorating dash of their forwards, and the promptitude with which they seized upon every chance of a shot at goal. The Everton vanguard gave us some pretty movements, but the opposing defenders rarely allowed them to settle down into their proper stride. There was an outstanding player on each side –Saul for Liverpool and Makepeace for Everton. The former played a grand game at back, and it was delightful a grand game at back, and it was delightful to watch the tussle3 which occurred between him and Sharp. Without attempting to race the speedy wing man. Saul yet gave him no liberty. Of course, Sharp had many a good look in, but it is long since he has met a left back so resourceful as Saul, proved on Saturday. Makepeace gave one of his most brilliant displays. Indeed, he quite over shadowed Taylor and Abbott. W. Balmer was the better of the Everton backs, though R. Balmer on one side, and West on the other did much useful work. Raisbeck had clever colleagues in Chorlton and Bradley, while there was no conspicuous player in the Everton quintette, Liverpool front line was best served by the wingers, though the centre and two inside men got through a tremendous amount of work. Scott was beaten four times, but he could not be blamed for the defeat, while Hardy was very reliable, one of his saves in the last few minutes of the game being really marvellous. By the way, the official estimate of the attendance was 40,000, the gate receipts being £1,160.
Teams: - Everton: - Scott, goals, W. Balmer, and R. Balmer, backs, Makepeace, Taylor (Captain), and Abbott half-backs, Sharp, Bolton Young, Settle, and Hardman forwards. Liverpool: - Hardy, goal, West, and Saul, backs, Chorlton, Raisbeck (Captain), and Bradley, half-backs, Goodard, Robinson J. Hewitt, C. Hewitt, and Cox, forwards. Referee Fred Kirkham.
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