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Would history have been different?

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I only recently finished reading Jimmy Armfield's autobiography in which he stated that he was offered the Everton manager's job by John Moores. I wasn't aware of this, as it was at the time when Armfield was managing Bolton. He made all the right noises, but indicated that he felt he wasnt quite ready for such a big club. Armfield then went on to manage Leeds, but I think was just at the point when Revie left for the England job, and Leeds were on the way down.

Would we have done better under Armfield (whom Leeds later sacked)? Or do you think he could have "done a job for us" given the players we had at the time? All speculation, I know, but I got the impression he had the right pedigree, both from playing and managing, to have done well with EFC.

I dont have the book anymore, as it was borrowed from a friend, but I guess this would have been around 1975-76??
John Brennan, Washington Tyne and Wear     Posted 14/10/2010 at 18:42:54

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Andy Crooks
1   Posted 14/10/2010 at 19:37:47

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John, Jimmy was to nice to succeed anywhere. If it is still in print read his book "Soccer for Scoolboys" The world he describes would be wonderful if it ever existed.
Rob Paterson
2   Posted 14/10/2010 at 20:15:45

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It was in the Summer of 1973, after Harry Catterick had been relieved of his managerial duties. Jimmy Armfield was one of a number of managers touted for the job including Jimmy Adamson and famously Don Revie.

In the end, Billy Bingham got the job. Just when we thought things could not get any worse, along came Gordon Lee. But I think sooner or later Howard Kendall was bound to get the job so history would eventually have got back on track.

Dennis Stevens
3   Posted 14/10/2010 at 20:23:58

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I've read that book & it's a good read. Armfield took over at Leeds United after Clough's famous 6 & a bit weeks & had to pretty well pick the players up off the floor as the famous morale under Revie had been destroyed by Clough.

Nonetheless, he still got the team to the European Cup Final, where I recall the officials being so biased against Leeds, it was almost like watching a Derby match! However, after that, the mostly aging players of the Revie era needed to be phased out & the team rebuilt.

I always felt Armfield wasn't really given a fair crack, but then football is notoriously impatient as a managerial environment. I think I would have chosen him over either Bingham or Lee, but we can only speculate as to how he or any other manager would have fared instead.

Of course, Shankley quit (again) after winning the Cup in '74 ? I wonder whether the history of the two clubs would have been dramatically altered if we had poached Paisley the year before?!

Marc Williams
4   Posted 14/10/2010 at 21:59:59

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Jimmy Armfield comes across as a lovely fella. In this age, when the world & his dog want to label us a 'small club', he is always very generous in his comments about Everton. I've heard him say we are a BIG club,with knowledgable fans. Certainly one of the best summarisers on BBC Radio 5 Live & a breath of fresh air compared to that gobby Kopite prick Alan Green.

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