Saturday, 28 January 2017

1958-59 - Part four (F.A. Cup ties)

Posted by Tony Hutton



LEEDS UNITED 0 WEST BROMWICH ALBION 1 (Kevan)       Attendance 45,000

Wood; Ashall, Hair; Cush (capt), Charlton, Gibson;
Humphries, Crowe, Shackleton, Revie, Overfield;

Potter; Howe, Williams (S.G.); Setters, Barlow (capt), Drury;
Forrester, Jackson, Allen, Kevan, Hogg;

Referee:- L.J. Hamer Horwich

After their unexpected 2-1 victory at the Hawthorns yesterday Leeds were unchanged but Albion brought in local boy Alec Jackson at inside right in place of England international Bobby Robson. Albion wore red shirts to avoid a colour clash.

Leeds, whose recent improvement dates  from the signing of Don Revie from Sunderland and Alan Shackleton from Burnley, were first on the attack on an absolute quagmire of a ground. However Albion's defence was in fine form right from the start and Howe showed his class by bringing the ball upfield to start dangerous attacks, in which young Forrester twice missed good chances. Revie was proving to be the brains of the Leeds attack and was providing the speedy Humphries with some splendid passes.

Whenever the winger managed to get past Williams, Barclow came across to cover splendidly. The right winger managed one splendid centre from which the energetic Crowe shot just wide. Shackleton had the best chance of the game when Howe, trying to be a bit too casual, completely mis-kicked and left the centre forward in possession just twelve yards out. Potter raced out of goal and Shackleton lobbed the ball over his head, but over the bar as well. Kevan had to leave the field for attention just before half time. H.T. 0-0.

After the interval it was apparent that Kevan had pulled a thigh muscle and he had to limp along on the left wing with Hogg moving inside. Hogg proved just as dangerous in his new position and broke through on his own to shoot just wide. Then a spell of continual pressure by Leeds saw several shots charged down and Potter also made two good saves.

After fifteen minutes of the second half Williams was carried off injured and Albion were down to nine fit men. However after sixty two minutes it was Albion who took the lead and it was the injured Kevan who scored. Hogg now operating on the right wing, beat Hair cut in along the goal line and crossed the ball low across the goalmouth. Kevan hobbled in to the far post and tapped it home from a yard out. Williams returned at inside left, with Hogg playing a roaming centre forward game, Allen at right half and Setters moved to left back. Despite constant Leeds pressure Albion held on for a remarkable victory.




Merrick (capt); Hall, Allen; Watts, Smith, Neal;
Astall, Gordon, Jackson, Larkin, Taylor;

Macedo; Cohen, Lawlor; Bentley, Stapleton, Lowe;
Leggatt, Hill, Cook, Haynes (capt), Johnson;

Referee:- J. Mitchell, Prescot

This long delayed cup tie was played on a ground frozen hard and was spoilt by fog which became gradually worse as the game progressed, so that spectators could see little of the last quarter of an hour's play. Fulham were without their international full back Jim Langley, injured in the replay at Peterborough. They moved Lawlor into his position and brought in Stapleton at centre half. Birmingham were at full strength with young centre forward Jackson continuing in the place he has recently won from Eddie Brown.

It was obvious that the players would have difficulty in keeping their feet on the treacherous surface from the start. Fulham got in some good combined moves, with Haynes as ever the architect, but they could not pierce the strong Birmingham rearguard. After twenty minutes the crowd had it's first bit of excitement when Macedo was forced to push a curling Taylor corner over the bar. From the second corner Jackson got in a good header but it was cleared off the line by Lawlor.

After thirty five minutes Fulham took the lead when Johnson put the ball inside to Hayes, who pushed a perfect pass to Hill, running in on the left hand side of the penalty area for the bearded inside forward to steady himself and calmly place it past Merrick. Birmingham retaliated at once and Taylor did well to get in a fine shot as he was tackled, but Macedo managed to push it over the bar. Half time 0-1.

After only six minutes of the second half the home side were level. Hall took a free kick just inside the Fulham half and lobbed it right into the goal area. Jackson, with his back to goal, jumped high and headed it over Macedo, who had advanced a little too far, into the net for a surprising equaliser. Birmingham continued to have most of the play as far as it was possible to see through the ever thickening fog, but they hardly seemed likely to score against a compact Fulham defence.

The Fulham attack disappointed in the second half when few attacking movements of the same quality of those see in the first half were mounted. Leggatt was not up to the stand of a winger with a reputation of one of Britain's best, indeed only Haynes played consistently throughout the game. Replay next week.

 Birmingham City won the replay at Fulham the following Wednesday 3-2 and will now play Notts Forest in the fifth round



WALSALL 3 (Hodgkisson 2, Richards) OLDHAM ATHLETIC 0               Attendance 7,180

Woodward; Haddington (capt), Guttridge; Jones, McPherson, Rawlings;
Davies, Hodgkisson, Kelly, Richards, Taylor;

Teece; Beswick, Taylor (capt); Chaytor, Murphy, Hall;
Bazley, Robinson, John, Stringfellow, Phoenix.

Referee:- J. Barradell, Leicester

Walsall had Jim Kelly signed from Swindon Town yesterday at centre forward and John Davies, from Scunthorpe, who made his debut at Barrow last week continued at outside right. Stan Jones was brought in at the last minute at right half as Billingham had been injured during a game for his Army unit. Oldham fielded a very young side whose only experienced players were Taylor, their captain, the former Grimsby and Southport defender, Teece, formerly Hull City's reserve goalkeeper and centre forward John recently signed from Exeter City. Notable among the younger players was right back Ivan Beswick, formerly a member of the all conquering Manchester United youth team.

Although Walsall dominated the first half their finishing was atrocious and the new centre forward was far too slow. John had perhaps the best chance of the game when he broke away on his own but Woodward came out very quickly and smothered his shot. Eventually Walsall did take the lead after forty minutes play. Richards  took the ball to the goal line on the left before pulling it back for Ken Hodgkisson to head it into the net. Half time 1-0.

Walsall went further ahead immediately following the interval. Hodgkisson pushed a lovely through pass out to Davies on the right wing. He raced away and put over a perfect centre which Kelly could not reach but Richards appeared running in at full speed  and threw himself full length in mid air and headed a brilliant goal.
Five minutes later Walsall scored a third goal. Hodgkisson won a race for the ball with goalkeeper Teece on the edge of the penalty area and calmly sidestepped him and another defender before hitting the ball into the net.

Walsall continued to have most of the play but could not add to their score mainly due to the poor form of Kelly who seems rather a poor buy. Davies at least did send across some good centres but is by no means sure of his place when Askey is fit again. The defence was rarely troubled but McPherson and Guttridge were outstanding and Jones playing in the unaccustomed position of right half also did well.

MONDAY 23RD FEBRUARY 1959                                   Attendance 34, 458


NOTTINGHAM FOREST 5 (Dwight 3, Gray 2 (1 pen)) BIRMINGHAM CITY 0

Thomson; Whare, McDonald; Whitefoot, McKinlay, Burkitt (capt);
Dwight, Quigley, Wilson, Gray, Imlach;

Merrick (capt); Hall, Allen; Watts, Smith, Neal;
Astall, Gordon, Orritt, Larkin, Hooper;

Referee:- Arthur Ellis, Halifax

The first game of this F.A. Cup marathon was played at Birmingham and resulted in a 1-1 draw, Tommy Wilson scoring the equaliser for Forest in the very last minute of time. The first replay at Nottingham had the same result with Dwight equalising near the end of extra time. Birmingham therefore had been in the lead for most of both games and this coupled with their cup fighting tradition seemed to make them favourites to go through to meet Bolton in the sixth round next Saturday. The game was played at the neutral venue of Filbert Street, Leicester and the size of the crowd on a Monday afternoon suggested that many people, like myself, had taken a day's holiday or more likely stayed off work sick.

Birmingham continued with Orritt at centre forward in place of the injured Jackson and must have pinned their hopes on Harry Hooper, who scored two splendid individual goals to knock out Fulham in the previous round after a spell in the reserves. Forest were unchanged and at full strength.

Forest did all the early attacking and it came as no surprise when they took the lead after seventeen minutes. Wilson, who had moved out to the right wing sent over a high centre which Dwight breasted down inside the penalty area, brushed past Smith and shot well out of Merrick's reach into the corner of the net. Forest continued to press playing splendid football, their two wing halves Whitefoot and Burkitt setting attack after attack in motion.

Whenever Birmingham did get in an attack they found McDonald in fine form at left back for Forest, McKinlay also commanded the middle and although Birmingham tended to neglect Hooper, the veteran Whare at right back proved equal to the task of stopping him with ease. After thirty five minutes Forest deservedly went further ahead with an excellent goal. Gray robbed Smith in the centre circle and passed to Wilson in the inside right position.

Wilson put it out to Dwight on the right wing and he hit over a fine centre which bounced on the edge of the goal area level with the far post. As it bounced Gray, who had raced up field, hit it first time and the ball flew into the same corner of the net as the previous one by Dwight. Half time 2-0.

Shortly before and just after the interval Birmingham seemed to be getting into their stride, but their attack was unbalanced with the main threat coming for their right wing pair of Astall and Gordon. Orritt was having a nightmare game at centre forward and could do little right. When he realised he could not get the ball he decided to go for the man but Mr. Ellis, who was standing for no nonsense from this vigorous Birmingham side, gave him a smiling rebuke. Hooper who had missed a great chance before Forest had scored when he dispossessed McKinlay on the half way and ran through on his own to shoot just past the post, saw more of the ball in the second half but Whare gradually got on top and played him out of the game.

Forest got a real grip on the game between the fifty eight and sixty fourth minutes during which time they scored three further goals. There seemed some doubt about the first as the ball went out of play mid way inside the Birmingham half and the linesman clearly indicated a throw to Birmingham. However Wilson picked up the ball and his long throw found Dwight unmarked in the centre. The Forest winger had time to pick his spot before Hall could challenge and crashed the ball home to Merrick's right.

Several Blues players appealed to the linesman but he seemed quite satisfied and Mr. Ellis allowed the goal to stand. A minute later a centre from Imlach found Dwight again in position in the centre to prod the ball home from close range to complete his hat trick and put Forest 4-0 in the lead. Four minutes later Imlach again weaved his way in from the left wing, he went round Hall but was brought down inside the area by Watts. Gray took the penalty kick and calmly hit the ball into the corner of the net for number five.

After this it was all over Birmingham realised their task was hopeless and Forest knew that they could not lose. So eventually after 300 minutes of playing time Nottingham were through to the sixth round and Birmingham, who had twice been so close to winning, had been humiliated and knocked out of the cup in no uncertain manner.

Mr. Billy Walker, the Forest manager, has got together a splendid side and if they can beat Bolton at Nottingham on Saturday they must stand a great chance of going to Wembley. They play very good attractive football as one would expect from a side which contains five Scots, Thomson, McDonald, McKinley, Quigley and Imlach. Of these McDonald and Imlach have already been capped and they will probably be joined by McKinley and Quigley. On this form Whitefoot, the former Busby Babe, must also stand a chance of being capped by England.

                                             NOTTINGHAM FOREST 1958-59           
Back row:- Whitefoot, Whare, McKinlay, Thompson, Dwight, McDonald, 
Front row:- Billy Walker (Manager), Wilson, Quigley, Burkitt (capt), Gray, Imlach and Tommy Graham (Trainer)                                                                                                                                       Nottingham Forest did indeed go on to win the FA Cup, beating Luton Town 2-1 in the final, despite losing Roy Dwight with a broken leg and playing with ten men for two thirds of the game.



ASTON VILLA 0 BURNLEY 0                             Attendance 54,100

Sims; Aldis (capt), Winton; Dixon, Dugdale, Crowe;
Myerscough, Sewell, Hitchens, Wylie, McParland;

McDonald; Angus, Smith; Seith, Cummings, Adamson (capt);
Connelly, McIlroy, Pointer, Cheeseborough, Pilkington;

Referee:- T.W. Dawes, Norwich

Aston Villa, although struggling at the bottom of the First Division, have managed to reach the quarter finals of the Cup mainly due to two splendid performances at Chelsea and Everton in previous rounds. Their form in these two matches is said to have been produced following the appointment of Mr. Joe Mercer from Sheffield United as manager. Mercer was of course captain of Arsenal for many years. Villa included their latest signing Winton at left back who was playing against his former colleagues.

Burnley, a side who get very little publicity, have got to the sixth round almost unnoticed. They have always been noted for their strong defence, but in recent years their small and clever forwards seem to have lacked punch in front of goal.  One player who might remedy this is 19 year old inside forward Robson, who scored a hat trick at Chelsea last week. Unfortunately he was missing today with an attack of influenza.

For the first quarter of an hour play was very scrappy indeed with both sides guilty of aimless passing and poor control of the ball. The first excitement came when Pointer, the young, fair haired Burnley centre forward hit across a centre cum shot which surprised Sims by landing on the crossbar. Sims went up late and crashed into the post as the ball went behind.

There was little danger from the Villa attacks and the Burnley defence looked very compact, all marking closely, especially new left back Smith who kept on top of Myerscough throughout the game. Just before the interval Pointer, who was Burnley's most dangerous forward, got in a grand shot on the turn from Pilkington's pass but it went just wide. Half time 0-0.

The pattern of play was repeated in the second half with both side showing very few ideas and very little skill. The large crowd was clearly disappointed as the day was fine and ideal for good football. The only excitement came when the referee had to be carried off the field after pulling a muscle and a volunteer from the crowd came on to run the line.

Burnley were very lucky not to concede a goal when Cummings let the ball run for McDonald, but the England goalkeeper moved out far too late and McParland got possession on the goal line. Before he could dribble it into the empty net however Angus raced across to clear. In a terrific scramble just before time, Hitchens Villa's best forward and Sewell both missed good chances and Burnley seemed content to play for a draw during the final stages and to settle for a home replay. On this form neither side deserves a place in the semi-finals!

In fact Villa won the replay at Burnley on 3rd February by 2-0 and will face Notts Forest at Hillsborough, Sheffield in the semi- final on 14th March.

MONDAY 2ND MARCH, 1959                                            Attendance 30,437



Finlayson; Stuart, Harris; Clamp, Wright (capt), Flowers;
Lill, Mason, Murray, Broadbent, Mullen;

Hollowbread; Baker, Hopkins; Blanchflower (capt), Norman, Ryden;
Harme, Brooks, Medwin, Dunmore, Jones;

Referee:- Mr F. Cowen, Manchester

Spurs, in a dangerous position near the foot of the table, made several team changes. Blanchflower, who has just returned to the first team after a spell in the reserves and has been playing inside right, was at last restored to his rightful position of right half and captain. Tommy Harmer, normally a ball playing inside right was out on the right wing with the erratic Johnny Brooks inside him. Welsh international Terry Medwin, normally a winger, was tried at centre forward in place of the injured Bobby Smith and the powerful Dave Dunmore replaced Clayton at inside left. Wolves were in second place just one point behind Arsenal but with two games in hand.

Heavy rain which had fallen during the day made the pitch very soft and therefore more suited to the Wolves long ball style of play. The Spurs defence looked none to sure in the opening minutes and after robbing the clumsy Norman, Murray hit the post. However under Blanchflower's guidance Spurs gradually settled down to play some delightful football. Blanchflower was once removed from the captaincy for moving Norman into the attack during a cup semi-final some three years, but obviously still believes in big centre half's ability to unsettle opposing defences.

Half way through the first half Norman went right up in attack and in one move placed a shot past Finlayson only for full back Stuart to clear off the line. Hollowbread, who got his chance in the team early this season after injuries to Ditchburn and Reynolds, distinguished himself with a series of splendid saves. Possibly the best was from a fierce thirty yard drove by left back Harris which the goalkeeper caught in mid air. HT 0-0.

Spurs continued to play the cleverer football during the second half with Blanchflower an inspiration both in attack and defence, but they rarely threatened to score. Wolves had the majority of the play but due to more splendid goalkeeping and poor finishing they too seemed unlikely to score. However after sixty nine minutes Lill cut inside Hopkins and sent a left foot shot past Hollowbread.

For all their clever midfield and approach play Spurs could not get near goal. Jones seemed to delight in running at full speed diagonally across the pitch but it got him nowhere. With only seconds remaining for play a centre from the left wing found Harmer right in front of goal and the little winger hooked it fiercely into the net from close range. Finlayson got both hands to it but could only succeed in pushing it over his head into the net despite the frantic efforts of Harris, on the line, to clear.



WALSALL RESERVES 2 (Faulkner 2, 1 pen) SHREWSBUR TOWN RESERVES 1 (Charlesworth)

Ball; Hill, Perkins (capt); Wright, Walker, Roper;
Askey, Kelly, Thurstans, Faulkner, Davies;

Humphries; McNab, Price; Harley (capt), Oliver, Pountney;
Adlam, Copp, Neeham, Russell, Charlesworth;

Walsall Reserves made several changes from the side beaten 3-2 by Banbury on Saturday. Harry Haddington, the former first team captain now on the transfer list, whose own goal in the last minute lost the game was omitted as was goalkeeper John Savage. Seventeen year old Kevin Ball took over in goal and Ken Hill, who made his debut for the first team against Hartlepool last week, returned at right back.. In the forward line Colin Askey was given a try out after a long lay off through injury, Kelly the centre forward recently signed from Swindon who scored for the first team at Southport on Saturday was tried at inside right.

Davies another recent signing, from Scunthorpe, who has been playing at outside right in the first team was tried on the opposite flank and Colin Thurstans, the seventeen year old centre forward who scored six against Hinckley on January 31st, retained his place.  Walsall took the lead after twelve minutes when a Davies centre was pushed on by Kelly to Faulkner who scored from close range. Ten minutes later a free kick taken by Harley on the right was headed in by outside left Charlesworth for Shrewsbury.

Shrewsbury included regular first team player Ray Russell , who lives and trains in Walsall, but little was seen of him. Shortly before half time Askey was brought down inside the penalty area and Faulkner made no mistake with the spot kick. Half time 2-1.

During the second half play became very scrappy and Walsall should have increased their lead. Main danger came from left winger Davies who made a great improvement on his first half showing. He sped past his full back with ease time after time. Askey was slowed up considerably by some fierce tackles by left back Price and little was seen of Thurstans throughout the match.

Walsall's defenders all did well, although due to the efficiency of others, Ball was rarely troubled in goal. Walker the experienced former Grimsby wing half was outstanding at centre half, with the younger players Ken Hill at right back and Alan Wright at right half showing great promise.

Thursday, 26 January 2017

1958-59 - Part three (European visitors)

Posted by Tony Hutton



ASTON VILLA 3 (McParland, Lee, Burrows) G.I.A.S. GOTHENBURG (SWEDEN) 0

Sims; Lynn (capt), Sharples; Lee, Dugdale, Crowe;
Smith, Sewell, Myerscough, Burrows, McParland;

L. Andersson; Henriksson, Jingard (capt); Cato, Forsberg, Linderoth;
Clason, K. Jakobsson, B. Andersson, Johansson, S. Jakobsson;

Referee:- Dennis Howell M.P. Birmingham

Although this game had little entertainment value for the spectators it may be of some benefit to Aston Villa as a few displays as confident as this would help their perilous First Division position. The fact that the Villa had about eighty per cent of the play only demonstrates the poor standard of their Swedish visitors, who were a typical Continental side, i.e. good ball control, clever approach work but no finishing power in front of goal.

The Villa gave seventeen year old Harry Burrows his first appearance with the senior side and the young inside forward certainly made the most of it. After he had conquered his early nervousness he settled down, using the ball well and demonstrating a powerful shot.

Villa's attack got into its stride early on and Andersson was soon in action to save a hard drive from Smith. The first goal came after seventeen minutes Sewell jumping over a pass from Crowe deceived the Swedish defence and McParland on the right hand side of the goal was able to send a powerful shot into the net. The Irishman then had another fine effort turned round the post by the agile Andersson.

The first time that the visitors attacked they nearly equalised. Centre forward Andersson put inside right Jakobsson through on the left. He shot as Sims came out and the ball rolled tantalisingly across goal and then just past the wrong side of the post. McParland picked up the ball on the half way line and tore through the entire defence at terrific speed. His rocket like shot appeared to be going just inside the far post but Andersson leapt across goal to push it out. Another surprise attack by the Swedes saw Lynn clear off the line from outside left Jakobsson. Half time 1-0.

Lee scored the second goal with a shot from the edge of the area through a crowd of players, after his first effort had been blocked. Young Burrows, after having a grand effort saved by Andersson, scored the third goal from the left hand side of the area. The best chance for the Swedes to reduce the lead fell to their centre forward who found himself clean through with only Sims to beat, but in trying to lob the ball over Sims' head, he somehow contrived to place it wide of the goal.



WALSALL 6 (Askey, Brownlee, Richards, Taylor, Faulkner 2) CREWE ALEXANDRA 0

Savage; Haddington (capt), Guttridge; Billingham, Jones, Hodgkisson;
Askey, Faulkner, Brownlee, Richards, Taylor;

Evans; McDonnell, Millar; Campbell (capt), Barnes, Ward;
Pounder, Pearson, Llewellyn, Keery, Colbridge;

Referee:- R.S. Smith, Newport

Walsall were without McPherson and Rawlings, both injured, and brought in Stan Jones for his first game of the season at centre half, switched Hodgkisson to left half, Richards to inside left with Brownlee re-appearing at centre forward. With five points from their last six games Walsall are now fifth in the league table.

The home side took an early lead when after a left wing attack Brownlee crossed the ball across goal for Askey to run it into the net. Walsall continued to dominate the play and were three goals up after half an hour. Crewe's defence was trying to play the offside game, but it was not coming off and the Walsall inside forwards were repeatedly allowed a clear run at goal. Brownlee scored the second following such a move. His shot struck Evans, bounced up in the air and he headed it into the net before the goalkeeper had recovered. After several missed chances Richards scored the third following another clear run at goal. Half time 3-0.

The second half was a repetition of the first and Walsall could have run up a phenomenal score if they had taken all their chances. The fourth goal came five minutes after the interval when Taylor, cutting in from the left wing, scored with a fierce drive.  Brownlee who was having his best game for some time made the fifth by pulling the ball back from the left for Faulkner, running in, to score easily.

The whole forward line had now scored. The final goal was also scored by Faulkner who was sent away with a perfect pass from Billingham. Richards, usually the surest of marksmen, strangely missed three simple chances, on each occasion only having the goalkeeper to beat. The whole Walsall side played well, with Hones a very good deputy for McPherson.

Crew suffered mainly because of the deficiencies of their defence, the rest of the side showing quite good form, the two wing halves in particular got in some good constructive work. Pounder was a lively winger and troubled Guttridge more than most wingers do. Llewellyn got the ball in the net twice but was given offside on each occasion.

Walsall have now scored forty goals this season, more than any other side in the Fourth Division. Richards has scored twelve, Brownlee six, Faulkner six, Askey four, Hodgkisson four, Taylor two, McPherson two and Billingham, Cochrance, Hunt (Chester) and Henderson (Darlington) one each.



WALSALL 2 (Brownlee, Richards) DERBY COUNTY 1 (Cargill)       Attendance 5,676

Woodward; Haddington (capt), Guttridge; Billingham, Jones, Hodgkisson;
Askey, Faulkner, Brownlee, Richards, Taylor; (Substitue Cochrance for Faulkner)

Oxford; Mays, Davies (capt); Parry, Young, Upton;
Hannigan, Swallow, Barrowcliffe, Hunt, Cargill; (Substitutes Darwin and Smith for Swallow and Young)

Referee:- A. Rowbotham, Bloxwich

After a first half dominated by their Second Division opponents, Walsall's superior fitness on a heavy ground saw them to victory. Derby were undoubtedly the more skillful side, using the ball well as one would expect from a side with two former wing halves at full back. Parry, at one time a heavy scorer for Derby at inside forward , gave a very energetic and skillful display at right half in the first half of the game but faded during the second.

Continuing the story of players who have changed positions brings us to Barrowliffe who played centre forward although normally a full back. Frankly he led the line like a full back and missed several good chances of opening the score. The visitors did however take the lead after thirty six minutes when their outside left, Cargill, formerly with Burnley and Sheffield Wednesday, beat Haddington with ease, cut in and fired a fierce shot into the corner of the Walsall net. This goal spurred on Walsall to great effort and three minutes later Brownlee raced through the centre, sent a terrific shot against Oxford's chest, collected the rebound and hit it into the net. Half time 1-1.

Derby started the second half strongly and Swallow, their recent acquisition from Arsenal got the ball into the net but was given offside. Swallow and centre half Young later left the field to be replaced by substitutes. Cochrane and previously replaced Faulkner in the Walsall side. Hodgkisson and Billingham began to dominate midfield and Walsall's only fault was their poor finishing. However Richards, who was not often in the game, put them ahead after seventy three minutes following a fine pass from Askey in the inside left position.

The visitors did not give ups and continued to play with determination until the final whistle. Woodward, who made a most satisfactory performance in his first senior appearance at Fellows Park, made a very good save when he just managed to finger tip a shot onto the post. He was also concerned in a hectic goalmouth scramble which ended with Haddington heading over his own bar.

Hunt, formerly a goalscoring centre forward with Norwich, had a good game but tended to neglect his dangerous wing partner, Cargill, who showed that he had the measure of Haddington in the first half but saw little of the ball thereafter.. Hannigan on the other wing had a very poor game which only confirmed his lack of success since leaving Scotland.

 WEDNESDAY 5TH NOVEMBER 1958                       Attendance 24,800



Potter; Howe, Williams (S.G.); Setters, Barlow (capt), Dudley;
Campbell, Burnside, Robson, Kevan, Hogg; (Substitute Allen for Robson at half time)

Carmelo; Crue, Canito; Mauri, Etura, Magueregui:
Arteche, Uribe, Arieta, Torre, Gainaz (capt);

Referee:- Klaas Schipper, Holland

The attendance for this match was a big disappointment but no doubt the recent poor showings by foreign teams in the Midlands had something to do with it. Torre, the inside left, was the only member of the visitor's team not capped by Spain. Unlike their main rivals in Spain, they do not recruit foreign players and every one of their squad are Basques.They certainly started off like a team of internationals, at a very fast pace indeed. Their clever centre forward, Arieta, soon had Barlow in trouble with dome delightful body swerves which left the Albion man standing. The Spaniards deservedly went ahead after thirteen minutes play. This time Uribe easily picked his way round Barlow and crossed the ball to the edge of the penalty area. Right half Mauri, although the ball came to him at an awkward height, somehow got his left foot up to it and crashed it into the net on the volley.

Albion retaliated immediately and Hogg was very unlucky when a splendid shot hit the post. Soon afterwards Carmelo made a fine save from a free kick, also taken by Hogg. The Spanish goalkeeper delighted the crowd with his huge kicks which travelled three quarters of the length of the field every time. Bilbao were not to be denied and their clever forwards, well prompted by two splendid wing halves, continually troubled the Albion defence. Potter saved well by diving at Arieta's feet and then the Albion goalkeeper had the good fortune to deflect a shot with his head onto a goalpost.

Just before half time Bilbao scored again. From a pass by Mauri, Arieta sent in a chip shot which completely deceived Potter. It appeared to be going over the bar but suddenly dipped to enter the top corner of the goal. Of post war English players I have only known Len Shackleton try such a shot. Half time 0-2.

Ronnie Allen, who has recently lost his place in the Albion side, replaced Bobby Robson at half time. Allen did a warm up lap of the ground during the interval, which got him a great reception from the crowd as befits one of the club's all time heroes. His re-appearance certainly put more life into the Albion forward line and his long through passes brought Derek Kevan into the game for the first time. The Spaniards did not take kindly to Kevan's challenging of the goalkeeper and several lively encounters took place in the Bilbao penalty area.

Burnside, who had a most disappointing game missed a great chance when he ran through but shot wide with only Carmelo to beat. Hogg, who always seemed most likely to score, again had bad luck when he cut inside his back and let fly a terrific shot which beat Carmelo only to strike the crossbar and go over. Kevan made a most realistic sprawling fall when impeded near goal and Allen crashed home the penalty kick. Albion now piled on the pressure and it looked as though they must equalise.

Kevan was brought down again inside the penalty area but the referee waved play on although this looked much more a penalty than the one actually awarded. The Spanish defence was beginning to panic now in the face of constant pressure with much gesticulation and arguing among their players. Their inside right went down injured and writhing in agony with only minutes left, but Williams was not convinced by his acting and promptly dragged him over the touchline. Two of the Spaniards ran over and dragged him back into the field of play while the rest of the team made insulting gestures and remarks towards Williams.

Bilbao managed to survive these last hectic minutes however and undoubtedly deserved their victory. It was a great pity that the majority of the crowd saw fit to boo and whistle the Spaniards when they lined up in the centre of the field for their final bow. They had shown a degree of skill and originality especially in the first half, rarely seen in England, and in Mauri they had a world class right half.



BIRMINGHAM CITY 2 (Larkin, Taylor) COLOGNE 0                      Attendance 20,236

Merrick (capt); Hall, Allen; Watts, Smith, Neal;
Hooper, Gordon, Brown, Larkin, Taylor;

Ewart; Kessler, Schnellinger; Schwier, Schumacher, Muhlenbock;
Habig, Sturm, Lorenz, Dorner (capt), Fendel;

Referee:- Signor Lobello Concetto (Syracuse, Italy)

Cologne were without three established German internationals, Stollenwerk, Schafter and Rohrig, who were unable to make the trip. The first leg in Cologne was drawn 2-2 so that Birmingham were favourites to go through to the next round. Trevor Smith, Birmingham and England under 23s centre half , returned to the side after a long absence in the reserves due to his request for a transfer.

Birmingham did most of the early attacking although Sturm missed a great chance for Cologne when he received a perfect pass from Habig. Cologne who turned out in white shirts with a red hoop round the neck and bright red shorts, were hard pressed in the first quarter of an hour . They were lucky not to concede a penalty when Brian Taylor was brought down well inside the penalty area. The referee however was not up with play and as he did not receive any signal from his linesman gave a free kick on the edge of the area.

Larkin looked the most likely scorer for the Blues, shooting at every opportunity. He forced Ewart to make a magnificent diving save from a shot which appeared to be going just under the bar. Brown's speed got him clear on the right but when he crossed the ball past Ewart there was no one on hand to prod it home.
Half time 0-0.

After ten minutes of the second half Brown was presented with a similar opportunity himself but with the goal gaping wide open in front of him he somehow managed to tread on the ball and all it to be scrambled away.
Within a minute however Gordon headed a Taylor corner on to Larkin who headed towards the corner of the net. Ewart got his hand to the ball but unaccountably allowed it to slip through for the first goal.

Cologne's forward line, led by the portly Lorenz, could never get going against a quick tackling defence in which Smith was outstanding. The visitors star player was nineteen year old, blond left back Schnellinger who gave Hooper very little scope. The second goal came after sixty seven minutes. Taylor's shot hit the far post and turned inwards to be caught be Ewart, but the referee was on the spot and ruled that the ball had crossed the line.



WOLVERHAMPTON WANDERES 2 (Broadbent 2)                 Attendance 45,767
F.C. SCHALKE '04 (Gelsinkirchen) 2 (Siebert, Koslowski)

Sidebottom; Stuart, Harris; Slater, Wright (capt), Flowers;
Deeley, Broadbent, Jackson, Mason, Mullen;

Loweg; Brocker, Laszig; Borutta, Kreuz, Karnhoff;
Koslowski, Koerdel, Siebert, Jagielski, Klodt (capt);

Referee:- A. Alsteen, Belgium

Wolves brought in Alan Jackson for his third senior appearance in an effort to solve their centre forward problem. This was their first match as English Champions in the European Cup and their opponents F.C. Schalke '04 are the Champions of Western Germany. The visitors were without their regular goalkeeper and appeared in a striking all white strip. Schalke are known as 'die Kappen' which means 'The Miners' coming as they do from the industrial heartland of Germany in the Ruhr.

Wolves had all the early play with their attacks developing at high speed, but they soon found that unlike most Continental sides Schalke had a fast, hard-tackling defence. Their bulky centre half Kreuz gave Jackson no chance, but the stars of their defence were left back Laszig and left half Karnhoff. Both tackled well and used the ball to advantage.

In the twenty third minute Wolves and the large crowd got a big surprise when Schalke took the lead. Siebert received the ball on the edge of the are, cleverly side-stepped Harris and gave Sidebottom not chance with a fine shot into the corner or the net. Wolves piled on the pressure now but could not score. Their best effort came from a fine shot by Broadbent but the German goalkeeper flung himself across the goal to make a splendid save in mid air.

Deeley was blotted out of the game and his wanderings only added to the crowded confusion in the middle of the field. Mullen's centres were not of the usual precision or Wolves could hardly have failed to score before the interval. Half time 0-1.

Wolves, so far undefeated under their own floodlights, and famous for their second half rallies, soon showed they were determined to keep their record. Broadbent pushed a Deeley cross into the net from close range only three minutes after the interval to put Wolves level. Another Deeley cross in the sixty fifth minute saw Broadbent head a second goal to put the home side ahead. With the crowd cheering them on Wolves went all out to add to their score.

Wright was playing as only he can and he was unbeatable in the air. However, the Germans who had showed themselves more skillful if not quite so fast in movement as the Wolves, levelled the scores with only three minutes left to play. Veteran international left winger Klodt, who wandered throughout the match, put a perfect ball through from the right for Koslowski to race onto in the inside right position
and to crash it past Sidebottom.



ASTON VILLA 3 (Milne og, Hitchens, McParland)
HEART OF MIDLOTHIAN 3 (Young, Blackwood, Wardhaugh)       Attendance 25,000

Beaton; Jackson, Aldis; Dixon, Dugdale, Crowe (capt);
Smith, Wylie, Hitchens, Burrows McParland;

Marshall; Kirk, Thomson; Mackay (capt), Milne, Bowman;
Paton, Murray, Young, Wardhaugh, Blackwood;

Referee:- H. Horner, Coventry

For their second floodlit friendly match of the season Villa entertained the Scottish League Champions and this season's Scottish League Cup holders, Heart of Midlothian. The Hearts are easily the best side in Scotland at the moment and their League Championship win last season was won with the remarkable ease.
Their record being:- Played 34, won 29, lost 1, drawn 4, goals for 132, goals against29, points 62.
Hearts captain Dave Mackay has recently been appointed captain of Scotland and two other internationals in the side tonight are the two inside forwards Jimmy Murray and Jimmy Wardhaugh.

Aston Villa, still in bottom place in the First Division table, introduced their newest signing Ron Wylie, from Notts County for his first senior game. Bill Beaton signed from Dunfermline earlier in the season continued as deputy for the injured Nigel Sims in goal. Beaton made his first appearance for Villa last Saturday at Leicester where they were beaten 6-3 after leading 3-0 during the first half. Jackson came in for the injured Lynn at right back, Aldis re-appeared at left back after several weeks on the injured list. Johnny Dixon, inside forward and captain in Villa's cup winning side last season, made his first appearance as a wing half and Harry Burrows the seventeen year old inside forward was making his second appearance.

Hearts impressed from the start with their ability to play football even in their own penalty area and it came as no surprise when they took the lead after fifteen minutes. Mackay started the move with a tremendous long throw in on the right, the ball moved quickly across the field to left winger Blackwood who slipped past Jackson with ease before swinging across a perfect centre which Alex Young met first time and cracked home.

Villa were soon level when new boy Wylie pushed a perfect pass through for Smith to run onto and the winger outpacing his full back took it to the by line before pulling back a low hard centre which struck centre half Milne on the foot and was deflected off the far post into the net. Hearts regained the lead after twenty six minutes with another fine goal. /their speedy outside left Blackwood again swerved round Jackson with ease and was left with a clear run for goal. He gave Beaton no chance with a fierce left foot drive into the far corner of the goal.

Wylie was working hard in midfield and was showing some clever touches although he did seem rather dubious about going into the tackle hard, no doubt a result of the broken leg which he sustained last season. It was from an attempted shot by Wylie which was stopped by Hitchens in the Hearts goal area and turned into the net that Villa equalised again after thirty three minutes. Half time 2-2.

In the second half Hearts again impressed with their very accurate passing, speed and originality. Their forwards showed every inclination to shoot and when they shot they really hit the ball hard. Mackay had a grand game at right half, he was here there and everywhere, spurring on his side and drawing gasps from the crowd with his huge throw ins. However it was the home side that went into the lead following a left wing corner taken by Hitchens, when McParland forced the ball home through a crowd of defenders after fifty nine minutes.

The Scots superior football ability could not be denied and they scored a well deserved equaliser in the seventy first minute following another mistake by Jackson. This time he hesitated with the ball on the edge of his own penalty area and Wardhaugh nipped in smartly to take it from him and to cut in and score with a well placed cross shot. The game continued to give good entertainment right up to the end and proved a fare more attractive fixture than the game with Gothenburg.

Crowe, who was selected for the first time for Wales this week captained the Villa, but was replaced by Lee at half time no doubt with Wednesday's game with England at Villa Park in view. After the game it was announced that by mutual consent Mr Eric Houghton's position of manager of the Aston Villa club has been terminated.

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

1958-59 - Part two (Goals galore)

Posted by Tony Hutton



ASTON VILLA 2 (Smith, Hitchens) NOTTINGHAM FOREST 3 (Burkitt, Wilson 2)

Sims; Lynn, Aldis (capt); Crowe, Saward, Lee;
Smith, Sewell, Hitchens, Hazelden, McParland;

Lightening; Whare, Thomas; Morley, McKinlay, Burkitt (capt);
Dwight, Quigley, Wilson, Gray, Imlach;

Referee:- J. Mitchell, Prescot

Villa are once again in the doldrums, after beating Portsmouth they have since lost 7-2 at West Ham and 5-2 at Portsmouth. As expected changes have been made, but not perhaps the expected ones. Dugdale, the club captain has been dropped for the first time since joining the club from West Bromwich. Saward switches to centre half and Lee was brought in for his league debut. Hazelden, who scored a hat trick for the reserves on Monday, came in for Myerscough. It is hard to see why Aldis, whose direct opponent on Wednesday, Peter Harris, scored five goals has been retained.

The early play by both sides showed little construction and it looked as though the crowd were in for a poor afternoon's entertainment from both sides. However eventually Forest began to liven up and when Burkitt swung over a good ball into the Villa goalmouth Quigley was just to slow to lob the ball over the goalkeeper as he dived at his feet. The first goal came after twenty six minutes and showed up Villa's defensive weakness.

Burkitt was able to go through on his own without being tackled and lobbed the ball beautifully over Sims' head into the top corner of the net from outside the penalty area. Six minutes later the Forest increased their lead. Gray made ground down the middle, switched the ball to Dwight on the right wing, who hit across a low hard centre. Saward left the ball to his goalkeeper, Sims, but Wilson ran in quickly past the centre half and prodded it home. Half time 0-2.

Six minutes after the interval Forest got another goal, Imlach put over a perfect centre from the left wing and Wilson headed a splendid goal. At last this seemed to prod Villa into life and after fifty five minutes Smith centred with his left foot and the ball curved away from Lightening into the corner of the net. 1-3 now and seven minutes later it was 2-3. McParland cut inside Whare and sent a fierce right foot shot aimed for the far post, Hitchens running in at speed headed it into the net. Villa continued to press but the Forest defence held firm and never looked like conceding another goal.

WEDNESDAY 10TH SEPTEMBER, 1958                      Attendance 34, 400


WEST BROMWICH ALBION 1 (Campbell) PORTSMOUTH 2 (Saunders, Harris (H))

 Jackman; Howe, Williams (S.G.); Dudley, Barlow (capt), Setters;
Campbell, Kevan, Allen, Burnside, Hogg;

Uprichard; Gunter, Hayward; Phillips, Dickinson (capt), Casey;
Harris (P), Gprdam. Saunders, Harris (H), Newman;

Referee:- E.R. Hill, Chester

Albion were unchanged and fielded the side which had brought off two fine away wins during the previous week, 6-0 at Birmingham and 3-1 at Burnley. The young ball juggler David Burnside, who is deputising for the injured Robson, scored two goals in each of these games. Portsmouth included their new signing from Gillingham, Ron Saunders, who was playing his second game for the club.

Portsmouth looked a much improved side from their earlier visit to the Midlands this season. The defence was very compact with former England wing half Jimmy Dickinson in splendid form at centre half. The two wing halves Phillips and Casey, particularly the former, were right on top of the opposing inside forwards throughout the match. In attack Peter Harris, who scored five goals against Aston Villa a week ago, showed glimpses of his old devastating form.

 It was from a typical Harris run that Portsmouth took the lead. The winger swept past Williams, cut in to the bye-line, then pulled the ball back out of Jackman's reach for Saunders to run it easily into the net. Saunders had previously pushed the ball tamely over the bar when in a good scoring position and Gordan had hit the bar with a great shot after cleverly beating his man. Half time 0-1.

Albion continued to overdo the close passing and tip tapping during the second half and the less talented but more direct Portsmouth side got a further goal when Dudley miss-kicked the ball on the edge of his own penalty area and gave Harry Harris, the former Newport player, the chance to shoot on the turn with his left foot into the far corner of the net. Albion continued to plod their rather lethargic way until eventually Hogg, who had a shocking game, cut into the middle, had his shot blocked by Uprichard but allowed Campbell to run in and push it home for a consolation goal.

It is a great pity that Albion cannot produce the form of which we know they are capable on their own ground for they have now obtained only two points from a possible six  at home and five out of six away.



WALSALL 2 (Richards (A), Mason og) CHESTER 2 (Richards (G), Croft)

Savage; Guttridge, Perkins; Hodgkisson, McPherson (capt), Rawlings;
Metcalfe, Cochrane, Brownlee, Richards (A), Taylor (C);

Owen; Gill, Souter; Hunt, Saunders (capt), Mason;
Croft, Webster, Jepson, Bullock, Richards (G);

With Haddington and Askey unfit Walsall brough in Perkins and Metcalf to the side which drew at Carlisle on Saturday and won at Milwall the previous Monday. Chester who have been hit by injuries this season included two players making their first appearance in league football in eighteen year old schoolboy David Owen in goal and outside right Croft. Although without two of their star forwards Billy Foulkes, formerly Newcastle and Wales, and Stan Pearson, formerly Manchester United and England, Chester still had two players with first division experience. They were skipper Saunders, formerly a team mate of manager John Harris at Chelsea and inside forward Harry Webster, formerly with Bolton Wanderers.

Chester surprised the crowd and the Walsall side with some clever football right from the start. After only four minutes outside right Croft cut into the middle drawing the defence before slipping the ball out for outside left Gordon Richards to run onto and crash it into the net. It was an exact replica of Pulley's winning goal for Gillingham in the Saddlers last home match.

Seven minutes later Walsall equalised with a grand goal. McPherson headed the ball down to Brownlee in the centre circle and the centre forward flicked it to Tony Richards who ran on down the centre of the field, passed to Cochrane. Richards ran alongside him and took the return pass before crashing it into the net. Eighteen minutes later the third goal of the match duly arrived and again it was Chester who scored. It was a strange goal as Croft lobbed the ball into the centre, Savage appeared to be well out of position and the ball gently trickled just inside the post. Half time 1-2.

Five minutes after the interval Walsall equalised and again it was Tony Richards who, running along the goal line from the left, shot hard for the ball to be deflected into the net by the Chester left half. From then on it was nearly all Walsall, or I should say all Richards. He saw two fine headers scrape the bar and two grand shots go just wide. The perhaps the best chance of the game fell to Cochrane as he was played onside with only the goalkeeper to beat, but somehow managed to steer the ball wide.

Then the crowning disappointment for the home side came seconds before the end when Richards again got in a grand shot through a crowd of players, only to see it hit the inside of the post, roll right along the goal line and come out again.




Finlayson; Stuart, Harris; Clamp, Wright (capt), Slater;
Deeley, Broadbent, Murray, Booth, Henderson;

Sims; Lynn (capt), Sharples; Lee, Dugdale, Saward;
Smith, Hitchens, Willis, Hazelden, McParland;

Referee:- J.H. Clough, Bolton

Wolves made two changes from the side which broke Blackburn's long record of not being beaten at home on Saturday. Slater replaced Flowers and Henderson replaced Horne at outside left, despite the fact that the young South African scored one of the goals on Saturday. Aston Villa, after five successive defeats continued their policy of introducing young players into the side and gave John Willis a left winger from Cheshire League club Mossley his first game. Willis wore the number nine shirt but switched positions with Peter McParland from the start. Sharples, who had a splendid game against Brabrook at Chelsea on Saturday, made his third appearance for Villa.

With only five minutes gone Willis had the chance to make a name for himself when he received a perfect pass inside Stuart and had only the goalkeeper to beat from about six yards. However he sliced his shot hopelessly wide. For the first twenty minutes Villa looked as though they might make a game of it. They played some good constructive football with both wing halves as well as Smith and Hitchens all prominent.

In the twenty first minute a clever move between Deeley and Broadbent gave Henderson the chance to score with a splendid first time shot on the turn. From this point it was all Wolves and after Nigel Sims, playing against his old team,  had made three first class saves in as many minutes, Wolves got their second goal after thirty five minutes play. Henderson sent over a perfect corner and Murray running in headed a splendid goal. Half time 2-0.

Six minutes after the interval Murray headed another grand goal. This time turning the ball sharply past Sims from Deeley's centre. By this time Villa's attack was almost non-existent. Willis had faded right out of the game, Hitchens after his early rushes was showing the effects of having played for the Army in Glasgow last night and McParland was completely subdued by Wright. Slater and Clamp dominated the midfield play and Broadbent was also in splendid form.

Wolves had a remarkable series of misses including a clearance off the line by Lynn when Murray had the goal at his mercy from six yards. Finally Broadbent lobbed the ball over the heads of the Villa defence to Henderson standing completely unmarked and the Scot taking the ball on his thigh, shot on the volley as it dropped and that was number four.

SATURDAY 4TH OCTOBER, 1958                  Kick off 7 p.m.



Finlayson; Stuart (capt), Harris; Slater, Showell, Clamp;
Deeley, Durandt, Murray, Mason, Mullen;

Wood; Foulkes (capt), Greaves; Godwin, Harrop, Crowther;
Violett, Quixall, Webster, Pearson, Scanlon;

Referee:- A. Bond, Fulham

Wolves experiment of Saturday night football was not the resounding success expected. However contributory factors to the poor crowd were the bad weather and the absence of Wright, Broadbent, Charlton, McGuiness and Gregg, who were all on international duty in Belfast.

The home side called upon George Showell, a capable deputy, to replace Wright and in Broadbent's place was eighteen year old South African Cliff Durandt playing his first league game. United brought back Ray Wood for his first league game since the Munich air crash. Stan Crowther deputised for Wilf McGuiness, Mark Pearson for Bobby Charlton and Bobby Harrop deputised for injured Ron Cope at centre half.

Wolves dominated the game throughout, although they only scored once during the first half. Mullen playing as well as ever, picked up the ball on the edge of his own penalty area and made ground up the left wing. On the half way line he squared the ball inside to Slater, who veered to the right, evaded a tackle and chipped a perfect pass through to Deeley. The little winger put the ball across goal and Mason scored with a grand glancing header.

Manchester's attack could make little progress against a Wolves defence which constantly employed the off-side trap. £45,000 signing from Sheffield Wednesday, Albert Quixall was very rarely seen and does not appear to fit into the Manchester style of play as yet. Half time 1-0.

Murray scored the second goal with a fine drive following a pass from Durandt who was having a splendid first game. He has obviously modelled his play on Broadbent and has the same deceptive body swerve. Mullen with one of his fierce left foot drives on the run scored the third goal which went in off the crossbar and Murray added the fourth in the last minute of the game.



WALSALL 2 (Richards, Hodgkisson) SHREWSBURY TOWN 3 (Rowley 2, Russell)

Savage; Haddington (capt), Perkins; Billingham, McPherson, Rawlings;
Askey, Hodgkisson, Faulkner, Richards, Taylor (C);

Crossley; Hob son, Skeech; Wallace, Maloney, Walters;
Whittaker, Russell, Edgley, Rowley (capt), Tucker;

Referee:- K. Stokes, Newark

No doubt encouraged by Walsall's fine 5-0 win at Aldershot last weekend the biggest crowd of the season turned up in hope of a repeat performance. However it was not to be and although Walsall played well, Shrewsbury just about deserved to win. The visitor's strength lay in their half back line, the two wing halves Wallace and Walters were strong in defence and linked up well with the forwards in attack.

Walsall scored first when Hodgkisson dribbled through, drew the centre half and flicked the ball with the outside of his right foot to Richards who hit the ball home. Shrewsbury stunned the cheering crowd to silence when they went downfield and equalised immediately. Russell, a clever ball player, dribbled through to score.
Four minutes later the ball ran loose to Tucker, completely unmarked on the left wing, his attempted shot was deflected to Arthur Rowley, the Shrewsbury player-manager, who scored easily.

In the sixty first minute the visitors went further ahead when right back Robson went upfield to receive the ball from a free kick near the corner flag. He squared the ball across goal and Rowley had a simple task to push the ball home. Walsall fought back strongly urged on by the big crowd and after seventy minutes Richards headed an Askey free kick down Hodgkisson who made it 3-2. Crossley made a brilliant save from a back-header by Richards and then Billingham, who had a grand game throughout, sent a terrific drive only inches over the bar.



WALSALL 3 (Wright, Hodgkisson, Brownlee) LINCOLN CITY 1 (Chapman)

Ball; Bunch, Guttridge; Billingham, McPherson (capt), Rawlings;
Askey, Wright, Brownlee, Hodgkisson, Taylor (C);

Thompson; Dykes, Smith; Middleton (capt), Jackson, Green;
Withers, McClelland, Grainger, Chapman, Coxon;

Referee:- Dennis Howell M.P., Perry Barr

Walsall, without four regular players, were more than a match for their Second Division opponents Lincoln City. Ball, the seventeen year old goalkeeper, Bunch, the former West Bromwich Albion player and Wright, were all making their first senior appearances. Lincoln included former Newcastle goalkeeper Thompson, ex Blackpool winger Alan Withers, recent signing from Manchester City - McClelland, Jack Grainger from Rotherham and Roy Chapman from Aston Villa.

The home side were the livelier from the start and it was no surprise when after fourteen minutes play young Wright headed the first goal from Brownlee's right wing centre. Seven minutes later after he had missed an opening down the middle, Hodgkisson headed a similar goal this time from Askey's centre. When Lincoln attacked they took advantage of poor marking by Bunch, but Ball was equal to all their efforts and made several splendid saves. Half time 2-0.

During the early part of the second half Walsall continued to dominate the play but many of their moves were spoilt by Brownlee's clumsiness. Taylor also had a poor game on the left wing. Walsall's newly found speed in switching from defence to attack was well demonstrated by their third goal which came after seventy three minutes. Ball saved a shot from McClelland at full length and cleared the ball to McPherson. The centre half sent a long ball downfield and Brownlee, winning a race for it with Thompson, was able to turn it into the empty net.

Lincoln at last came into the game during the final quarter of an hour, showing the crowd something approaching Second Division football. With only five minutes left for play, after several dangerous individual bursts, Chapman volleyed Coxon's left wing centre first time into the corner of the net for a splendid goal.



ASTON VILLA 1 (McParland) ARSENAL 2 (Ward, Nutt)        Attendance 30,000

Sims; Lynn (capt), Sharples; Lee, Dugdale, Crowe;
Smith, Myerscough, Sewell, Barrett, McParland;

Kelsey; Wills, Evans; Ward, Dodgin, Docherty (capt);
Clapton, Groves, Herd, Bloomfield, Nutt;

Referee:- J.G. Williams, Nottingham

A significant omission from the programme for this match was the First Division league table which would have shown Aston Villa at the bottom and Arsenal just behind the leaders Bolton. Villa continued their forward shuffling and McParland, who withdrew his transfer request earlier today, played on the left wing.
Arsenal were without Jackie Henderson, their recent signing from Wolves, who was injured playing for Scotland last week. Arsenal's two other Scottish players Docherty and Herd both returned, but Bowen who captained Wales on Saturday was unable to get back into the Arsenal side due to the fine form shown by young Ward recently.

Arsenal got off to a good start and their clever forwards looked far too good for the shaky Villa defence. Sims made a magnificent save from Bloomfield diving full length in mid air to push his shot round the post. Following the corner , taken by Nutt,  the ball ran loose to Ward just outside the penalty area and he promptly hit it into the far corner of the net for a fine goal after only eight minutes play. Ward scored a similar goal against Manchester United eleven days ago.

Arsenal, with their right wing pair of Groves and Clapton particularly dangerous, looked like chalking up a big win, but gradually they seemed to loose the sense of urgency and lapsed into over-elaboration. Villa now came into the game more with Lee prompting the forwards well. After thirty nine minutes the home side equalised when McParland headed in from a Smith corner. Half time 1-1.

Villa's attack policy during the second half consisted of sending long balls down the centre for McParland to chase and although the Irishman went close on several occasions Kelsey was in masterly form in the Arsenal goal. Docherty and Ward eventually gained control of the mid-field play, linking up well with Bloomfield and it came as no surprise when Arsenal took the lead after sixty eight minutes. An angled shot from Nutt entering the net via the far post. Arsenal's defence held out with ease for the rest of the game which ended in a comfortable win for the visitors.

On the same day England were taking on Russia at Wembley in a friendly international.

Monday, 23 January 2017

1958-59 - Part one (Floodlights take over)

Posted by Tony Hutton



ASTON VILLA 3 (Myerscough, Dixon, McParland) PORTSMOUTH 2 (Crawford, Sims og)

Sims; Lynn, Aldis; Birch, Dugdale (capt), Saward;
Smith, Hitchens, Dixon, Myerscough, McParland;

Uprichard; McGhee, Hayward; Dickinson (capt), Rutter, Casey;
Harris (P), Gordon, Crawford, Harris (H), Govan;

Referee:- F.Collinge, Rochdale

Aston Villa made just one change from the team which opened the season with a 1-1- draw with neighbours Birmingham City on Saturday, bringing in Leslie Smith at outside right in place of the injured Southren. Portsmouth having lost at home to newly promoted West Ham in their first match made several changes.
Dickinson, the veteran England international, moved from centre half to right half and Rutter came in at centre half. Crawford took the place of Dougan at centre forward and former Birmingham City winger Alex Govan
came in for Newman.

After a disappointing time last season Pompey have appointed a new manager Mr Freddie Cox, formerly manager of Bournemouth, and also have three new players in their side.They are Basil Hayward, the former Port Vale utility player, Tom Casey, the Irish international wing half from Newcastle and Harry Harris an inside forward from Newport County. However despite all the new blood Portsmouth showed little improvement on last season's form and Villa were little better. In fact the game was noteworthy mainly for the fact that Villa Park's new floodlights were switched on for the first time at half time.

Portsmouth scored first after twenty six minutes following a good combined move started by Casey and carried on by Peter Harris and Gordan which enabled Crawford to place the ball well to the left of Sims from just inside the penalty area. Five minutes later Villa were level when Myerscough met a centre from Smith on the right hand edge of the penalty area and shot powerfully past Uprichard. Just before half time Dixon got in a splendid header but the Portsmouth keeper brought off a brilliant save. Half time 1-1.

Ten minutes after the interval Dixon gave Villa the lead with a shot from ten yards following a goalmouth scramble and ten minutes later from a pass by Hitchens, McParland burst through the centre to put Villa further ahead. Villa continued to play with vigour and enthusiasm but there was little evidence of any real football skill, Smith at outside right had a really miserable game. Five minutes after McParland's goal Portsmouth were presented with a second goal when goalkeeper Nigel Sims pushed a corner taken by Dickinson into his own net. Not a game to remember.



WEST BROMWICH ALBION 2 (Hogg, Allen pen.) BIRMINGHAM CITY 2 (Houghton, Brown)

Jackman; Howe, Williams S.G.; Setters, Barlow (capt), Drury;
Campbell, Robson, Allen, Kevan, Hogg;

Merrick; Hall, Green (capt); Larkin, Sissons, Neal;
Hooper, Houghton, Brown, Orritt, Taylor;

Referee:- F. Dagnall, Bolton

The match programme informs us that veteran former club captain Len Millard left the club to take over as manager of non league Stafford Rangers during the summer. Goalkeeper Jim Sanders has joined Coventry City and winger George Lee has got a proper job and will also play non league football. So three of the Wembley winners have now left the club.

One item of interest in the programme was that ground season tickets cost just £3. This had proved quite popular and over 4,000 had been sold already. Albion had a professional staff of thirty six players, but that included only two goalkeepers, neither of whom had any First Division experience. They are Jackman, who came from Aldershot and Potter signed during the summer from Crystal Palace.

Despite much criticism by their supporters Albion persevered with Saturday's side which drew at Luton, Barlow continuing at centre half and Drury at left half, with last season's pivot the ever reliable Joe Kennedy still in the reserves. Birmingham brought in Houghton, the former Bradford player in place of Murphy, Sissons deputised for the injured Trevor Smith at centre half and Brian Taylor, the former Walsall outside left, was given his second First Division game.

The first half was goal less but not without incident. Albion had perhaps most of the play, but tended to over elaborate at times and whenever danger threatened the Birmingham goal Merrick was as good as ever. Several times he dived at Kevan's feet to save certain goals as the big Albion inside forward raced through.
Most danger stemmed from the two right wingers, Hooper being Birmingham's best forward and young Campbell on the Albion wing showing that he has quite recovered from the broken leg he sustained towards the end of last season. Indeed Frank Griffin, another broken leg victim, may have difficulty in recapturing his place when fit again. Half time 0-0.

Although Birmingham played with more spirit in the second half, and were the more direct side throughout, it seemed as through the Albion defence, in which Barlow was outstanding, would be able to prevent them from scoring. After sixty four minutes however Birmingham took the lead with a great goal. Taylor took the ball down the left wing and Houghton ran into position inside him. The inside forward received a perfect pass for him to run onto just inside the left hand corner of the penalty area and although Jackman ran out of goal, Houghton let fly a terrific drive which flew into the roof the net as he collided with the goalkeeper. This was a real Kevan type goal and it is remarkable that Houghton, whose style of play is so similar to Kevan's, is a product of the same club, Bradford Park Avenue, and also started his career as a centre forward.

As usual when Albion concede a goal it stings them to immediate reply. Five minutes later Robson dribbled in from the right, his shot hit the post and rebounded to Hogg who volleyed the ball past Merrick from close range. With only six minutes to go Albion took the lead when Campbell dribbled through and his shot seemed a certain goal until Neal handled the ball. Allen took the penalty and as usual crashed the ball into the net. It was later learned that the power of his shot had been so great that an iron peg holding down the net had been dislodged and cut a spectator's chin!

The game was still not won however as with only ninety second left to play Orritt pushed the ball past Barlow on the half way line and Eddie Brown with a burst of his terrific speed was away after it, with what seemed the entire Albion defence in pursuit. He outpaced them all and placed the ball cleverly past Jackman as he came out into the corner of the net for the equaliser. Brown a born comedian at once set off on a typical victory run which took along the goal line to shake hands with the corner flag, then up the touchline shaking hands with a policeman, before returning to the field to be engulfed by his grateful colleagues.

It was an exciting enough game with a draw a fair result as Albion were by no means at the best, whereas Birmingham gave their most lively display for some time. The potential greatness of the Albion team has been increased by the signing of Derek Hogg from Leicester City, who may well be in the running for an England place. Barlow was immaculate at centre half, once dribbling round three players in his own penalty area before making a perfect pass to his wing half. Drury gave a steady display but one would think he is not yet ready for a regular place in a team of Albion's capabilities.

This must have been a really encouraging game for the Blues. Gilbert Merrick showed that he is as good as ever in goal, Sissons proved a most capable deputy for Smith and Taylor with several fine runs, particularly in the second half when he beat Howe with ease on several occasions, looks as though he will make the grade at this level.



WALSALL 2 (Richards 2) MILWALL 1 (Crowshaw)                   Attendance 11,259

Savage; Haddington (capt), Guttridge; Billingham, McPherson, Rawlings;
Askey, Murray, Richards, Hodgkisson, Taylor (C);

Davies; Craig, Brady; Summersby, Dove, Rawson;
Roche, Bumpstead, Pacey, Heckman, Crowshaw;

Referee: K.A. Colllinge, Altrincham

Walsall made four changes from the side which had lost 3-0 at Exeter in their  first game in the newly formed  Fourth Division. Savage, after his week's suspension, returned in goal in place of Woodward and Murray, Hodgkisson and Colin Taylor all came into the forward line in place of Cochrane, Faulkner and Metcalfe, all branded failures at Exeter.

Milwall included former Walsall goalkeeper Reg Davies and newly signed outside left, Alan Crowshaw from Derby County. Both players started their careers at West Bromwich Albion. The visitors got off to a good start and Summersby sent in a long range shot which Savage could not hold but Guttridge scrambled it away. Hodgkisson got the ball in the net after twenty minutes but was given offside. The Walsall defence was playing well with Guttridge, McPherson and Rawlings outstanding. A minute before half time Walsall took the lead. Rawling went through on his own and as he was tackled on the edge of the area managed to push the ball to Richards, who scored with a splendid shot. Half time 1-0.

With the floodlights on in the second half Walsall were again on the attack. Dove, the big clumsy Milwall centre half, fouled Richard on the left hand side of the penalty area. After the centre forward had received attention from the trainer, Rawlings took the free kick and lobbed it high into the goal area. Richards ran in and headed it over Davies into the net for his second goal.

Walsall seemed to slacken off after this and the passing on both sides became very ragged. However the home side continued to have the majority of the play and only bad finishing prevented them from adding to the score. Milwall got a consolation goal when McPherson made his only mistake of the match by completely mis-kicking and letting in Crowshaw for an easy goal.



WALSALL 1 (McPherson pen.) GILLINGHAM 2 (Patrick, Pulley)      Attendance 10,131

Savage; Haddington (capt), Guttridge; Hodgkisson, McPherson, Rawlings;
Askey, Murray, Richards, Faulkner, Taylor;

Simpson; Parry, Hannaway (capt); Proverbs, Hughes, Laing;
Bacon, Patrick, Saunders, Edgar, Pulley;

Referee:- R.N. Jordan, Leicester

Walsall manager Bill Moore stated before the match that Peter Billingham the young wing half had been dropped because of the barracking he received on Thursday night. Moore moved Ken Hodgkisson to take his place, bringing back Roy Faulkner at inside forward. Gillingham, captained by Hannaway, formerly a team mate of Savage and Faulkner at Manchester City, had several new players. These were Hughes, a centre half from Bournemouth, Bacon, outside right from Norwich, Patrick, inside right from Coventry, Edgar, inside left from Barnsley and Pulley outside left from Milwall.

The first half was dominated by Walsall while the Gillingham players were still getting to know each other.
Some atrocious finishing by Murray was the reason they did not go ahead earlier and they should have been five goals up by half time. The only goal that did come was a penalty taken by McPherson after Proverbs had handled inside the area. Faulkner put in the best effort for Walsall, his shot being tipped over the bar by Simpson. Just before half time Murray had yet another glorious chance to score but with only the goalkeeper to beat, he shot hopelessly wide. Half time 1-0.

Murray, who could do nothing right, was again well placed to score early in the second half but Simpson deflected his shot to Askey whose high lob dropped on to the roof of the net. Three minutes after the interval Gillingham equalised when Patrick headed home Hughes' free kick, Savage making no effort to get to the ball. Pulley hit the post and at the other in Murray got in his best effort so far, a left foot shot which skimmed the bar. Patrick then missed an open goal for Gillingham and but for his goal this player almost matched Murray for ineffectiveness.

It was all Gillingham now, well prompted by their two wing halves. Savage did well to save a header from Saunders and then when the Walsall goalkeeper came out and missed a high ball, Patrick was left with the ball at his feet and an unguarded goal, but he somehow managed to shoot high over the bar! Finally with seven minutes remaining Gillingham got their deserved winning goal, Pulley running in at speed from the left wing hit Patrick's square pass first time into the net for a fine goal.




Ross; Jackson, Ashfield; Birch (capt), Sharples, Lee;
Roberts, Deakin, Atkins, Hazelden, Willis;

Leeson; Jones, Gillott; Price, Hopkins, Walters (capt);
Whyke, Beaumont, Hirst, Stainsby, Brookes;

Referee:- R.A. Kibble, Walsall

Barnsley, who had already this season beaten a Wolves reserve side containing Clamp, Murray and Mullen, were weakened by an injury after only ten minutes to inside right Beaumont. This left him as a passenger on the right wing for the rest of the game. However the visitors had an equal amount of the play during the first half with their captain, former Walsall wing half Henry Walters, outstanding. Villa took the lead shortly before half time when seventeen year old Hazelden scored from close range. Half time 1-0.

After the interval Villa dominated the game and whenever Barnsley attacked they were easily repelled by Sharples, who had a fine game at centre half and played with the utmost coolness as did wing half Gordon Lee. Hazelden increased the Villa lead after sixty nine minutes with a fine shot on the run. Inside right Alan Deakin scored the third nine minutes later with a shot from outside the penalty area and the teenager, Hazelden, competed his hat trick six minutes from time. This young lad could have a great future.




Finlayson; Stuart, Harris; Slater, Wright (capt), Flowers;
Deeley, Broadbent, Henderson, Booth, Mullen;

Gregory; Bond, Cantwell (capt); Malcolm, Brown, Landsdowne;
Grice, Smith, Keeble, Dick, Musgrove;

Referee: H. Haworth, Blackburn

My first visit to Molineux this season to see the reigning league champions Wolves. They had started the season well with a 5-1 home win over Notts Forest, but since then lost 2-0 at West Ham last Wednesday and then were trounced 6-2 at Stamford Bridge by the young Chelsea side on Saturday. Jimmy Greaves, the eighteen year old Chelsea inside right scored five goals in this game and gave England captain Billy Wright the run around.

Wright and the whole Wolves side were given a real grilling by the Press this week and it must have pleased them to get such a great ovation from the big crowd here tonight. Only one change, Booth for Mason, was made from Saturday's side. West Ham, who trounced Aston Villa 7-2 on Saturday, have taken full six points from their first three games in the First Division and were worthy opponents for Wolves' effort to regain their lost prestige.

The visitors shocked the home side by taking the lead after only eighteen minutes play. Harris, the left back, left Grice completely open and when the winger got the ball he cut in and let fly a fierce drive which beat Finlayson and went into the net off the far post. Although Wolves had most of the play, West  Ham looked equally dangerous whenever they attacked with Harris giving the dangerous Grice far too much room.

The lively Keeble troubled Wright but the Wolves centre half showed that he isn't finished yet. Slater in particular and Stuart were also outstanding in the Wolves defence. All the West Ham defenders did well and the general impression given by their side was of a team rather than personalities. Gregory made a brilliant save from a great back heel by Henderson and Bond, a cultured right back headed a Mullen free kick off the line. Half time 0-1.

With their famous floodlights on the Wolves were really dominant in the second half and hammered away at the West Ham goal without respite. But the West Ham defence remained steady, Gregory made many fine saves, notably from Broadbent when the inside forward was through on his own, and Bond cleared off his line twice in as many minutes. Then after sixty three minutes the Wolves drew level when a low shot from Broadbent went into the corner of the net with Gregory unsighted.

Try as they might Wolves could not get the winning goal and although they had most of the play they did not really deserve it as the West Ham defence and Grice's snap shot earned them the draw. To take three points from the Wolves in the first fortnight of the season is a great feat and they should finish well towards the top of the league if this form is maintained. As for Wolves they obviously have not yet found the touch of last season, but no doubt they will soon.