Continuing the theme of listing every player who represented Everton from 1946-47 when League Football resumed after the Second World War, until 1950-51 when Everton were relegated to Division Two.
Joseph Mercer, OBEBorn 9 August 1914; Died August 1990
Genial Joe Mercer retired twice as a player, in May 1953 and June 1954, the second time after suffering a double fracture of his leg in a League game against Liverpool atBandy-leggedp>
Bandy-legged, he was an outstanding wing-half with a biting tackle, and a never-say-die attitude. From April 1933 to April 1954, he appeared in 450 games for Everton and Arsenal, and won 6 full caps and 27 wartime caps for England, also representing the Football League. He was part of a tremendous half-back line comprising of Cliff Britton and the redoubtable Stan Cullis.
Mercer gained three League Championship medals, the first with Everton in 1938-39, and two with the Gunners in 1947-48 and 1952-53. He also skippered the Londoners in the 1950 FA Cup Final victory over Liverpool in 1950, and collected a runners-up medal two years later. He was also voted Footballer of Year in 1950.
Eventually retiring in 1954, shortly before his 40th birthday, Mercer spent a year or so out of the game, running a grocery shop in Wirral. He moved back into football as Manager of Sheffield United before taking over as the Aston Villa Manager. He introduced several youngsters at Villa Park, calling them 'Mercer's Minnows'. He took Villa to the Second Division title in 1960 and League Cup victory in 1961, and saw them finish as runners-up in the latter competition in 1963. Mercer then stayed out of the game for a short while (his wife and friends thought the pressure would kill him) before reappearing as Manager of Manchester City.
With Malcolm Allison as his assistant, he revitalised the Maine Road club, guiding them to First Division Glory and a Charity Shield victory in 1968, an FA Cup triumph in 1969, League Cup Final success in 1970, followed by victory in the 1971 European Cup Winners Cup Final.
He managed England for a handful of games in 1974, between the respective reigns of Sir Alf Ramsey and Don Revie. He brought a smile back to the players and fans alike with some positive results.
He lived in Birkenhead and watched Tranmere Rovers regularly, until his death at the age of 76, a Wonderful Man.
Joe Mercer's Everton career record was 184 appearances 2 goals.
Eric MooreBorn 16 July 1926; Died August 2003
A product of Haydock, Eric Moore had his fair share of ups and downs during his eight years at Goodison Park. After a solid start in the Central League side, in which he figured at both centre-forward and right-half, he was switched to right-back. From that point he was a regular for the best part of eighteen months, but a troublesome knee injury sidelined him for long spells during the following two seasons.
When he was fully fit again, he missed only one game in two seasons, but in December 1956, unhappy at his lack of game time, he asked for a transfer. He moved to Chesterfield in a deal worth £10,000 in January 1957, after nearly 200 outings for Everton. In July 1957 he was signed by Tranmere Rovers, later becoming a publican in Atherton.
Eric Moore's Everton career record was 184 appearances.
James Anthony O'NeillBorn 13 October 1931; Died 15 December 2007
Goalkeeper Jimmy O'Neill was spotted by an Everton scout while playing Junior football in Dublin, and invited to Goodison Park for a trial period; he was taken on at the end of 1948-49, and offered full professional terms.
He made his Central League debut in August 1949 and, 364 days later, his first-team debut – a defeat to Middlesbrough.
He enjoyed a successful career, becoming one of Britain's outstanding goalkeepers, forcing his way into the Ireland side where he won 17 caps. He was exceptionally safe when handling crosses, and he utilised his speed well. Indeed, he was often seen halting opposition forwards in their tracks on the edge of the penalty area.
He eventually lost his place to Albert Dunlop, and was transferred to Stoke City for £5,000 in July 1960 before joining Darlington in March 1965, later playing for Port Vale.
Jimmy O'Neill's Everton career record was 213 appearances.
John William ParkerBorn 5 July 1925; Died 1988
John Willie Parker spent more than four years in the shadows, before establishing himself in the Everton side in the early '50s. He was a tall stylish inside forward with two good feet and the ability to create goal-scoring chances as well a being a regular scorer himself.He arrived as an amateur in 1947 from St Lawrence CYMC and quickly graduated through the junior sides, signing professional forms in December 1948. Within 18 months he was a regular in the Central League side, but he did not make his first-team debut until 24 March 1951, when he occupied the outside-left berth against Blackpool at Goodison Park. He was a deceptive player who was often criticised for being too casual in his approach to the game; he had his faults but was widely regarded as one of the more cultured performers of the day.
John Willie Parker's Everton career record was 176 appearances 89 goals.
Clifford Brian PinchbeckBorn 29 January 1925; Died 2 November 1996
The tall figure of Cliff Pinchbeck covered for Harry Catterick and Jock Dodds at Everton, making his debut in the First Division against Derby County in January 1948. He was transferred to Brighton and Hove Albion in 1949.
Cliff Pinchbeck's Everton career was 3 appearances.
Harold J PottsBorn 22 October 1922; Died 16 January 1996
Harry Potts was Everton's first £20,000 signing, an effective inside-forward he scored 50 goals in 181 appearances for Burnley, gaining an FA Cup Winner's medal in 1947.
The Turf Moor Board turned down a £25,000 bid from Blackpool before selling him to the Blues. He made his Everton debut at Charlton Athletic in October 1950, partnering left-winger Tommy Eglington.
His best season, was his first season at Goodison Park when he scored 5 goals in 29 games; he played only once when promotion was gained from the Second Division in 1954.
Harry Potts's Everton career record was 63 appearances 16 goals.
Aubrey PowellBorn 19 April 1918; Died 27 January 2009
Aubrey Powell was Everton's first-five figure signing after the Second World War. He joined the Blues from Leeds United, in readiness for the 1948-49 season, and made his debut in a 3-3 home draw with Newcastle United, and helped Everton escape relegation from the top flight.
A dapper yet somewhat fragile looking footballer, he was a wonderful dribbler and possessed a strong right-foot shot. he twice fought back after doctors had written him off with serious injuries.
During the Second World War he had served in Belgium before returning to win eight full caps, two with Everton, and star in four victorious international games for Wales. He made 112 League appearances for Leeds United scoring 25 goals.
Aubrey Powell's Everton Career record was 35 appearances 5 goals.
George RankinBorn 29 January 1930; Died 1989
Owing to the form of Jack Hedley and Gordon Dugdale, and then George Saunders and Eric Moore, well-built George Rankin had to wait until December 1950 before making his League debut for Everton against Derby County at Goodison Park.
He retained his place in the side for the remainder of that season, before losing out to the former Rangers defender, Jock Lindsay. He later did well with Southport, making 144 appearances in four seasons.
George Rankin's Everton career record was 39 appearances.
Reader Comments (24)
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1 Posted 22/07/2018 at 16:30:38
Thanks for your efforts, and being a Gentleman Evertonian.
2 Posted 22/07/2018 at 18:57:59
Jimmy O'Neill also played at Oldham that night and played in the semi final in 1953 versus Bolton, I used to see Jimmy in the old main stand after he finished his playing career, always easy to talk to and loved Everton.
John Willie was a very underrated football, was good with his head and set up many a goal with his flicks around the penalty area, leading goal scorer in our promotion year and in a few seasons before and after that, came from a footballing family from Birkenhead.
Pinchbeck, remember the name when I first started going to the match, don't think I saw any of his three games.
Harry Potts, £20,000 was a very large fee in those days, he might have been passed his best when we signed, maybe Kenwright was involved in that deal !!!!!, I remember seeing Harry in a friendly game v Notts County when he was involved in one of those old fashioned penalties, he took the penalty, just tapped it a few feet and another player ran forward and scored, not sure who, could have been Eddie Wainwright,
Aubrey Powell, was he a Welsh international?, he played in the record crowd versus Liverpool, the 3-3 game v Newcastle, if I'm not mistaken was one of eight draws in the first division that day and to my shame I wasn't at the game, don't know why but I was at Anfield watching Liverpool reserves beating Barnsley reserves 5-2, I told you last week John, I had a capacity for storing useless information in my hea
George Rankin was a decent left back who never really made a name for himself at the Blues but got a decent career out of football.
3 Posted 22/07/2018 at 20:16:05
Regarding Joe Mercer, he was one of two England captains to have been born in Ellesmere Port – the other being Stan Cullis, of course. Ellesmere Port was, until the 1960s & 1970's I think, the only place in England outside of London to have provided the country with two captains and the town provided many professional footballers – Kevin Lewis, Ian Bowyer, Niel Whatmore, and many others too.
4 Posted 22/07/2018 at 20:49:01
Hi Dave , I bumped into Jimmy O'Neill in Ormskirk a few years before he died, and I thanked him for the years of enjoyment he gave me. During the chat I had with him, I mentioned that I had an Everton book that had been signed by Joe Mercer, Ted Sagar and Tommy Lawton, he immediately said "Bring it along to the next home game, and I will add my signature," which he did outside of the Winslow, a true gentleman.
With regard to John Willie Parker, some used to say that your hero, Dave Hickson, did all the work and that John Willie was lazy, but they were an outstanding strike force.
Cliff Pinchbeck is a memory locked in the recesses of your mind, because he played in the Arsenal game that you referred to, a 2-0 home defeat in March 1948, the three games he played in all resulted in defeats, 3-1 Derby County (home) and 3-0 to Preston North End (away).
Everton played two friendlies against Notts County in January and February 1951, there's a good chance I would have seen them but I can't recall them. In the first game, Everton won 3-2, Harry Potts (2), Jimmy McIntosh scoring, and in the second game Tommy Eglington (2) and Oscar Hold scored in a 3-0 win.
The friendlies would have been arranged because Everton had lost 2-0 to Hull City in the FA Cup. I do however remember the friendly a fortnight after the second Notts County game, it was against Middlesbrough a 1-1 draw, the goal scorer Jimmy McIntosh, my stand out memory being the golden-haired Wilf Mannion.
Yes, Dave, Aubrey Powell was a Welsh International, and he actually scored in the 3-3 Newcastle game;like you I have a head stuffed with useless information, although I suspect that a leakage has occurred because I know there are games I have attended that I can't recall, but then, between us we have seen one or two, I'd be lost without my books.
5 Posted 22/07/2018 at 20:51:56
Thanks for the memories, I also saw Moore play but have no vivid memory of him.
Thanks, again, John.
6 Posted 22/07/2018 at 21:54:35
7 Posted 22/07/2018 at 23:08:02
Hi Rick , that's one game I do remember, the other goals coming from Dave Hickson (2), Cyril Lello, and a Jock Lindsay penalty; we really must get together, Rick, when the circumstances are favourable.
Hi Andy , I really can't be doing with a player wearing 18 on his back being referred to as the 'Number 10' – and what's this 'false Number 9' all about? I even heard Brendan Rodgers saying that one of the Liverpool players was a 9½ — I thought he was talking about his shoe size!!
8 Posted 23/07/2018 at 09:46:14
I recall Mercer as a manager more than a player but I was fascinated to read your response (post 4) with regards to John Willie Parker. I recall my late father telling me that JWP was "a goal hanger". You have alluded to it in your post and it is the first time I have ever read or heard mention of it other than my father's "moans". I think he was influenced by Dave Hickson, who he loved until he moved over the park and against whom I once played cricket.
Once again, John, many thanks.
9 Posted 23/07/2018 at 16:04:53
Interested to see George Rankin is mentioned in this one.
I believe he was one of four of the Rankin family to play for Everton. I only saw Andy Rankin play "in the flesh" and in addition to him and George, the other two Rankins to play for Everton were Bruce and Billy.
What an amazing football/Everton family!
11 Posted 23/07/2018 at 18:45:30
In the 1951-52 season, he scored 16 League and FA Cup goals in 38 appearances, Dave Hickson netted 14 goals in 33 appearances.
In the 1952-53 season, John Willie scored 17 goals in 36 League and Cup games, while Davie weighed in with 16 goals in 32 games.
In 1953-54, Everton's promotion season, John Willie scored 33 times in 41 League and FA Cup games, Davie scored 28 goals in 43 League and FA Cup games
The 1954-55 season saw John Willie score 19 times in 34 League and FA Cup matches, Davie notched 13 goals in 41 League and FA Cup starts.
The partnership was broken up in September 1955 when Dave Hickson was transferred to Aston Villa, John Willie Parker struggled that season without his mate, scoring only 4 goals in 20 League appearances and he was transferred to Bury in May 1956.
So Ian, you will see from the figures that their partnership was a fruitful one, 122 goals between them in three seasons.
Hi Steve , you are right when you say that George Rankin was from a sporting family, but I'm afraid that Billy Rankin never made it to the first team. I believe that George was the nephew of George 'Stonewall' Jackson who played at right-back for Everton in the 1940s, I'll try to get some more information on Billy Rankin.
12 Posted 23/07/2018 at 18:50:08
13 Posted 23/07/2018 at 19:32:10
14 Posted 23/07/2018 at 19:40:37
15 Posted 23/07/2018 at 20:44:18
He represented England at baseball, and later became a baseball referee. He was a back stop at baseball and was known as the man with the 'Iron Hands' as he didn't wear protective gloves.
If George Jackson was related in any way to the Rankin family, which I believe was, then he and Billy would have played together in that Amateur Cup Final.
Hi Lenny  I should have gone to the Forest v Everton FA Cup match, but we moved to Skelmersdale that weekend. I was told that Everton were in control until Joe Baker was injured and Ian Storey-Moore moved to centre-forward, grabbing a hat-trick in the process.
Hi Peter  and Len , I think you have hit the nail on the head, Joe Mercer and Bobby Robson, were not only gentlemen, they were also 'Gentle Men' not a trace of arrogance. My daughter when she was a little girl, received Joe's autograph, he wrote "To Vicky", a pity really because her name is Nicki.
The day that Everton beat Luton Town, I was at the ground early and Bobby Robson drove into Goodison Avenue looking for the car park. I directed him to the Bullens Road car park entrance and then took it upon myself to escort him and his wife to main entrance, He presented the League Championship Trophy Everton that day, happy memories.
16 Posted 24/07/2018 at 07:22:05
I believe that if Westy had been in nets that day we would have prevailed. History repeated itself in my little blue book when another goalkeeping change in the FA Cup brought us down. That would be many years later when Mimms came in for Big Nev and well, you know the rest.
17 Posted 24/07/2018 at 08:48:00
18 Posted 24/07/2018 at 12:32:35
Can you remember the first game of the 1961-62 season when we beat Aston Villa 2-0, and Derek Dougan sported a 'Mohican style' haircut? It was reported that a couple of weeks later, Joe Mercer called Dougan into his office and said, "If you want to be different, score a few bloody goals".
19 Posted 24/07/2018 at 15:04:17
The first game of the 1961/62 season,when Derek
Dougan had that mohican hairstyle.
Whenever DD touched the ball, 40,000 Evertonians
started whooping like red Indians. Derek Dougan
was a colourful character all the teams that he
He was a good centre forward especially playing
for Northern Ireland, who had a decent team then.
The Blues won against the Villa 2-0, a good start.
Some of the teams he played for, Aston Villa,
Did he have something to do with a takeover at
Wolves with other investors.?
20 Posted 24/07/2018 at 15:34:34
21 Posted 24/07/2018 at 18:13:39
22 Posted 27/11/2018 at 10:20:11
Some of your comments regarding the Rankins are correct, but there was 8 in total to represent the club at all different levels.
Bruce Rankin and his brother George Rankin –1900s; Billy Rankin (George Rankin's Dad) Also played for Marine.
George Rankin – 1950's (George's dad wouldn't allow him to go full time, hence in and out of the team, also serving in the army. Billy Rankin (George Rankin's Brother) also played for Marine and Southport with George.
George Rankin (Andy Rankin's Dad)
Andy Rankin –1960s
Billy Wallace (George and Andy's Cousin, grandson of Bruce Rankin) also played for Bolton.
Plus others who played for other clubs, Wigan Athletic, Tranmere, Huddersfield.
Jeff, Bruce Rankin's Great Grandson.
23 Posted 27/11/2018 at 10:26:33
24 Posted 28/11/2018 at 11:36:30
If it's correct, that then can make 9, must be a record, over 4 generations, the club really in my opinion should give us some recognition for this.
25 Posted 28/11/2018 at 14:12:04
Hi Alan  George Rankin was indeed the nephew of George "Stonewall" Jackson.
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