A recent exchange of e-mails from an old friend, Rob Swift, had us recalling a Boxing Day match against Man Utd in the 1977-78 season. We were actually a very good team in those days, possibly only a decent goalie away from winning the title, and we finished third that season, with of course, the mighty Bob Latchford scoring 30 league goals.
Expectations were high going into that Boxing Day fixture, United were in a period of transition, and we were unbeaten in 18 league games, having lost the first two of the season, surprisingly (at the time) at home to newly promoted Nottingham Forest, who went on to win the title, and a narrow away defeat to Arsenal.
We got stuffed. 6-2! But such was the festive mood at the time, everyone recognised that it was just a bad day at the office for our defence that day. I remember there were ironic cheers of appreciation and even resigned laughter at the absurdity of the situation as the United goals flew in to the back of the net.
The crowd went home that day, having experienced a disappointing & embarrassing home defeat, but also having witnessed a highly entertaining match. We'd all heard about strange results over the Christmas period in days gone by, 'cos we knew our history. In older times teams would play each other home and away within the space of a few days, often winning handsomely in one game, only to get thrashed a day or so later.
I suspect the mood against Birmingham this coming Boxing Day will be somewhat different if we get beat 6-2.
Barry Ward, Posted 17/12/2010 at 11:17:59
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1 Posted 17/12/2010 at 16:30:26
2 Posted 17/12/2010 at 16:45:37
Question I was thinking was, did Everton also sing that Slade song and if so who against?
3 Posted 17/12/2010 at 17:36:22
I was there with the lads; as I remember, the floodlights packed up for about 5 mins.
That Man Utd side were the most attack-minded side I've ever seen. Tommy Docherty put them together in the old 2nd Division after George Best.
With virtually unknown picks from around the leagues "the Doc" brought a group of young lads together and give them free rein. They electrified Old Trafford. I still think of that team as the model of what can be done when a manager is brave, Holloway is re-enacting the process at Blackpool.
Doc's downfall of course was starting an affair with the team physio's wife and getting sacked. A series of modern tactical managers came along and they've never been as exciting, even the Fergie teams.
I like to think Evertonian's had the good grace to recognise a very special Utd team on that night.
4 Posted 17/12/2010 at 19:08:49
Charles (3) , it's funny how memories differ. My recollection is they scored every time they got into our half, which wasn't often, and up to probably their 4th goal you always felt we had a chance to win it as we were the better side. Even the Brummie guy said it was the most one sided 6-2 defeat he'd ever seen. Time plays tricks on the memory but that was our opinion leaving the game. That's also probably why everyone was in a reasonable mood, we just felt we'd seen a completely freak occurence.
5 Posted 17/12/2010 at 19:16:14
6 Posted 17/12/2010 at 19:44:30
7 Posted 17/12/2010 at 22:16:23
8 Posted 17/12/2010 at 22:40:02
9 Posted 17/12/2010 at 22:47:47
Macari scored a great goal actually, but the day was shite.
10 Posted 17/12/2010 at 23:34:27
A stranger Xmas game was the one we lost at home to Chelsea 4-3 in 84-85. Being a natural Everton pessimist, I thought that result would signal the end of our title challenge. In fact, we didn't lose a single match after that until the title was clinched.
For the slightly more elderly, how about the double-header against Burnley in December 1960 ? Dec 26th we win 3-1 at Turf Moor, and the very next day play the return at Goodison, and lose 3-0, in front of a crowd of ? get this ? 74,000! I was only a baby when that one took place, but I hope some of our older correspondents can reminisce.
11 Posted 18/12/2010 at 10:01:56
12 Posted 18/12/2010 at 10:14:39
13 Posted 18/12/2010 at 10:47:35
Happy Xmas fellow ToffeeWebbers!!
14 Posted 18/12/2010 at 13:56:47
There was no segregation then, but no problems either. I recall an old girl in blue and white two rows down from us for whom it was all too much when their 5th went in. She turned to the Mancs celebrating in the seats behind and started whacking them with her blue and white brolly..."Oh, just shurrup you'se..!!" Happier days indeed!
15 Posted 18/12/2010 at 15:34:38
The ground itself was a relatively safe haven in those days. It was getting to and from the grounds which were dangerous. Many of my generation will recall the instructions to "put the blinds down, lads" on the football special as the train from Trafford Park entered a 'bricking section'. Or the terror of being accosted at Elland Rd by one of those little Leeds bastards asking you the time to get your accent... Aah, happy days!
16 Posted 18/12/2010 at 16:20:06
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