In goal would be Neville Southall; a back four of Ian Snodin, Dave Watson, Kevin Ratcliffe and Keith Newton; in the midfield, Phil Neville, Barry Horne, Howard Kendall and Kevin Sheedy; up-front, Graeme Sharp and Mick Lyons. Subs: Lee Carsley, Peter Reid, Joe Royle, Kevin Richardson, Mark Pembridge and more...
The team would of course be managed by Howard Kendall who gets to do the double as both a player and a manager
For some reason, we preferred Jim Arnold to Neville Southall at the time, mainly I suppose because we conceded less with Jim in nets and he was more experienced the then young big Nev.
Ian Snodin was signed as a midfield player from Leeds and struggled at first in a blue shirt; he ended up at right back because of injuries and never looked back. Big Dave Watson had to follow crowd favourite Derek Mountfield and we didn’t like him mainly because of that. Kevin Ratcliffe was hounded during his early games even though he was playing out of position at left back. Keith Newton had the mis-fortune to replace Ray Wilson and for years all our left backs suffered the same fate.
In midfield I don’t think I have to dwell on Phil Neville, he came from Man Utd, was Gary Neville’s brother and the fact we thought he was crap will do for starters. Barry Horne had done the rounds before he signed for us and was an Evertonian by birth — that usually is enough for us to be hard on someone.
Howard Kendall, I remember his Everton debut at Goodison Park, he was signed and replaced Jimmy Gabriel and missed a sitter at the Street End against Southampton... I can still hear the groans around Goodison to this day. He won us over with his winning goal against Liverpool at the same end. Kevin Sheedy, we still moaned and called him throughout his Everton career, mainly because he had come from Liverpool and we thought he was lazy, it never occurred to many people that when he didn’t run back and tackle it was because the ‘dome’ wanted him as our relieve the pressure, let-out ball and to stay out wide near the half-way line.
I remember Sharpies debut against Ipswich Town in the Cup and a snow filled Goodison, that game and many more after it had fans demanding to know what the fuss was about. I have placed Mick Lyons up front and I suppose I could of fitted him anywhere if I needed to. He was an all-rounder, blue through and through, and would run through a brick wall for the cause. We loved Andy Gray for it but took it out on Mick because he was local and supported us as a kid.
The subs bench, the list could be endless. I suppose Joe Royle should be up front instead of Micky Lyons as he was a true centre-forward and not a makeshift one. Joe’s crime in the early days was simply because he was local and replaced Alex Young in the team. Feel free to add your favourite to this list of subs.
Our manager Howard Kendall was slightly different in that we didn’t dislike him at first, we simply questioned if he was up to the job with no experience at the then First Division level. It quickly went downhill for him with the famous Kendall Out graffiti around the ground and also daubed onto his garage at home. He, like all the above players, turned it around and we should be forever grateful for the fact none of them were quitters — and must have been partially deaf as well.
I am not brave enough to list a chairman, but then again you are not supposed to like them anyway. And finally, the moral of all of this: when you sign for Everton, try not to be local, support Everton as a kid, have played for Liverpool, or replace a legend.
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1 Posted 14/07/2009 at 08:45:37
Ian Snodin will always be one of my heroes because, if memory serves me correctly, the RS tried to hijack the deal but Ian insisted in coming to Goodison because he thought he would win more things with us ..
Those were the days
2 Posted 14/07/2009 at 09:06:44
3 Posted 14/07/2009 at 09:47:24
Ratcliffe said that Watson was able to survive because he was mentally one of the strongest players he had ever met. How many others who were a bit less tough could have made it with different treatment?
4 Posted 14/07/2009 at 10:22:50
After 35 years of supporting our great club, I’ve always wondered why such great fans seem to take great delight in having a "whipping boy" who can do no right.
I remember being at a game when Peter Reid in the twilight of his Everton career was receiving stick from the crowd. I just felt really sorry for him and it seemed such a cruel way to treat someone who had contributed so much to the club.
5 Posted 14/07/2009 at 10:45:27
Grant, Wright, Jones.
6 Posted 14/07/2009 at 10:43:03
I have never got it... if the team have played badly and lost, have a boo at the end of the game...
But does anybody really think shouting out "Fuck off Neville, you Manc" or "You're shite, Hibbert" will do anything for the good of the team? Our players get enough stick off opposing fans... why join in??
I no longer have a season ticket due to work commitments... but last time I did, I moved the seat I'd had for 5 years, due to the idiot sat behind me shouting the same abuse at the same player — no matter how he played.
I suppose if you pay your money and you are that way inclined (and can't afford the therapy) then fair enough. But it does spoil it for others.
And as your list above shows, most of the time they are wrong. I just wonder if any of the above players would have performed better, earlier on, if the more impatient members of the fanbase had actually given them support?
7 Posted 14/07/2009 at 11:50:05
You’re right, though: his Everton curve was very similar to John Ebbrell, Barry Horne, Joe Parkinson and Lee Carsley’s.
All were either roundly pilloried to begin with — or seriously undervalued. Then, through sheer determination, they each won the fans over.
Nulty was just at that very point when Jimmy Case did what Jimmy Case did worst.
On the same day as Dixie died, I seem to recall? March 1980?
8 Posted 14/07/2009 at 12:25:22
9 Posted 14/07/2009 at 12:33:33
10 Posted 14/07/2009 at 13:41:02
As a postscript - as you all know, that was the 30-goal season for big Bob. Well I was in the Upper Bullens for the last match v Chelsea — and yes the bloke was slagging Latchford off!!"
11 Posted 14/07/2009 at 15:33:28
12 Posted 14/07/2009 at 16:33:24
What a pair!
13 Posted 14/07/2009 at 18:25:03
14 Posted 15/07/2009 at 07:46:09
It was in the 1970-71 season — when we were the reigning Champions. Me and my Dad had a season ticket in the Gwladys Street stand (what would now be called the upper tier). On some Saturdays when the 1st team were away, me and my dad would go and watch the Reserves.
One particular Reserve match we were at was in October (the 17th to be precise — yes I know... an Evertonian anorak; guilty as charged!!). The reason I know the date is because the 1st team were away at Arsenal. New signing Henry Newton, a midfielder/defender was making his debut. To accommodate him, Catterick dropped John Hurst and moved Howard Kendall to the back four with the new bloke wearing No 10 and playing in midfield.
Of course, many people at the Reserves had radios with them to get updates from Radio Merseyside on how the 1st team were doing. The news was not good — goals were going in Andy Rankin’s net — four to be precise as we lost 0-4. As the news came through I can remeber one woman sat a couple of rows infront saying to those around her, "What do you expect if you sign another Newton!!" — New signing condemned without being seen!!
I seem to recall Henry Newton playing quite well at left back and scoring some goals from free kicks. I don’t think he really fulfilled his potential for us as his best position was midfield. In the same way, I think his namesake suffered from being played at left back for most of his Everton career and not his favoured right back position. As my dad said at the time, "We sign an international right back and play him at left back — where’s the logic in that?"
I have never been an adovocate of slagging players off at the match — at the pub before or after the game, yes, I think that’s ok... but at the match, however bad they are, they get my full backing.
My own "contender " for worst ever Everton player has to be Bernie Wright. Yes, he tried his best, I will give him that, but there is no way he was ever good enough for the top division. Can anyone remember his home debut in March 1972 v Man City — when he smacked Summerbee in the face and everyone saw it execept the Ref and Linesman? Personally I thought Bernie looked more like a Rugby League player than a footballer!!
15 Posted 15/07/2009 at 08:52:04
K Newton replaced crowd favourite the Immortal Sandy Brown who’s confidence was undermined by a damning with faint praise on a nationwide TV (Sportsnight with Coleman??) who then went right to pieces after the own goal incident.
Sandy Brown was in and out of the team after The Great Wilson. But, as you say, when compared retrospectively, all fell short of the previous occupant at LB. Fast forward to Pat van den Hauwe and much the same. Big boots to fill always a problem.
16 Posted 15/07/2009 at 11:33:09
17 Posted 15/07/2009 at 13:01:01
Keith Newton seemed to have been signed to replace Sandy Brown. I always felt he suffered after "that own goal" — it’s hardly ever mentioned that he scored the third goal for the Blues in a 3-1 win in the Derby match of August 1966 after Alan Ball had scored the first 2 goals.
I think Sandy came back into the team for the last few games of the Championship season in 1969 -70 when Keith Newton was injured.
Maybe the crowd indifference/hostility to both Newtons was mainly due to our dramatic drop in form. Both had their moments — but overall they both never really fulfilled their potential at Goodison.
Although you may think the comparison a bit tentative, I see some parallels between Tony Hibbert and Sandy Brown. It would seem that DM is looking for a full back, presumably to replace Hibbo or provide some competition/give the squad some depth for that position.
I wouldn’t class myself as a great fan of Hibbo but, fair play to the lad, you can never fault his commitment and his form has recently been quite good. Unfortunately, the exception seems to have been the Cup Final - although in his defence, I thought the yellow card was undeserved, especially when compared with some of the challenges that followed from Chelsea. I think that clearly affected Hibbert and you could tell that he was nervous of making further challenges and he became increasingly hesistant. Chelsea clearly played on that weakness.
If we do strengthen the squad with another right back, I hope that Tony Hibbert stays. I think that he is a better player than many of us realise. Hopefully the crowd will be supportive rather than condemning. I know these guys get paid very well but I doubt whether the likes of Tony Hibbert deliberately set out to play badly. Personally I don’t think "barracking" a player ever helps the bloke to improve.
18 Posted 15/07/2009 at 13:45:06
19 Posted 15/07/2009 at 14:16:00
20 Posted 15/07/2009 at 14:40:07
21 Posted 15/07/2009 at 15:23:35
It seemed that all of the Blues squabbling as they headed across towards Diana Street were united in one thing: McLaughlin was a poor, poor player. No-one disputed that. But the disagreements stemmed from two opposing schools of thought: The "Yeah But Let’s Lay Off Him Tonight, Coz He’s Got The Blue Shirt On After All" brigade versus the "If He Doesn’t Wanna Be Picked Then He Shouldn’t Collect His Wages On Friday" crew.
It was very, very meaty stuff. And eye-popping for a seven-year-old!
22 Posted 15/07/2009 at 15:56:12
He was at his best just at the time when traditional centre-forwards who worked with pacy wingers were said to be becoming obsolete. Some may recall he missed the 1966 FA Cup Final because of a knee injury. Incidentally, I don’t recall much hostility to Howard Kendall, except that when he arrived he had a bright red car. He was soon persuaded to change it with some "practical guidance."
23 Posted 15/07/2009 at 17:46:48
I always have wondered what would his Everton career been like if that ball were just four inches lower. Reputations are won and lost on such things.
24 Posted 15/07/2009 at 19:51:39
25 Posted 16/07/2009 at 07:15:36
Two examples of this are Dave Watson, who came through and proved himself to be not just a great Everton centre-half/central defender but also a great captain — a leader in every sense of the word.
And Barry Horne, I well remember "that game" against Wimbledon at Goodison in ’94. It looked as though the match was slipping away from us and relegation was heading our way. What a shot — what a goal to equalise, it had Goodison rocking — the belief was back.... and Stuart our favourite "Diamond Geezer" did the biz!! I was surely not the only one sad to see Barry Horne leave Goodison — it was far too soon.
Hopefully Evertonians will see the folly of giving our players stick and will get behind them.
26 Posted 20/07/2009 at 14:49:39
Anyway, this one particular game he was having a shocker. He goes to collect the ball for a throw in, in front of the Enclosure — of course it was a standing area then — and some fella in the front row apparently screams "Book yer ideas up, you fucking 700 hundred grand cabbage-patch doll!" — which was met with rapturous laughter and a looked of genuine terror on the face of Adrian Heath!
27 Posted 26/07/2009 at 19:48:45
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