Why are we Evertonians?

by   |   11/10/2020  105 Comments  [Jump to last]

I was pleased, actually, really pleased when Dom scored for England on his debut. Why should that be so? I don't know him. I certainly didn't care when Harry Kane scored his first international goal.

Of course, Dom plays for Everton, my team. So,it was personal. Why should that be so? I live in Ireland: why should what happens to a bunch of lads, who earn more in a week than I will earn in the rest of my life, matter so much?

Why does it matter so much to the many Americans( and by fuck it matters to them) who are on this site.

Everton can make or break my weekend. God knows what it does to the lads who live there. My stomach is already in a knot about the derby.

I know why you scousers support our club. You were born to it, you had no choice. I, and many others had. Why did we do it? How did you become an Evertonian when you could have picked any team in the world?

I know I made the right choice. I guess every club has supporters whose choice was random. In fact, the only man in Ireland who supported Ipswich was a guest at the cup final when they beat , I think, Arsenal. Are we Evertonians?

back Return to Talking Points index  :  Add your Comments »


Reader Comments (105)

Note: the following content is not moderated or vetted by the site owners at the time of submission. Comments are the responsibility of the poster. Disclaimer


Michael Penley
1 Posted 13/10/2020 at 13:22:33
Blue is my favorite colour. No joke, that was my reason. And my dad supports Chelsea so I couldn't choose them. Maybe there was something deeper to it, though. At the time I wasn't that familiar with the Premier League I saw Everton as unassuming, not too loud or arrogant like that Red lot, and underdogs. So not too different from myself.
John McFarlane Snr
2 Posted 13/10/2020 at 14:08:12
Hi Andy, I was born into an Everton family, [Granddad and 7 uncles], and although I have no proof, I believe that my Granddad born in 1875, and i3 years old when the Football League was founded, would have been in at the start. I can't recall him missing many games, either first team or reserves.
Ian Horan
3 Posted 13/10/2020 at 14:21:53
I am an Evertonian as a result of my bloodlines heritage!!, sadly my son who's 16 became a toffee as at birth the midwife said the baby was born blue and distressed ( wife was in labour for 36 hours), clearly the description of toffees since the 80s
Stan Schofield
4 Posted 13/10/2020 at 14:39:00
I became an Evertonian because my dad took me to Goodison when I was 7, in 1961. I was immediately drawn in, and clearly remember Alex Young, but became really hooked in the mid-60s with that FA Cup final where we came back from 2-0 down and Eddie Cavanagh ran on the pitch, and then with the signing of Alan Ball after the World Cup.
Bill Griffiths
5 Posted 13/10/2020 at 14:56:46
Hi Andy, like you I am not a Scouser being a Welshman from North Wales. Among my earliest memories are from the age of 4 to 5 are of my father looking for Everton's score on Saturday evenings whilst checking his pools coupon. He was from Neston on the Wirral and didn't have a great interest in football but for some reason he liked Everton and Everton has stuck with me ever since then.
I have been going to their games ever since I started working Back in 1967. My eldest son & my daughter are both blues and my daughter had 6 kids all having Everton as their middle name. My youngest son is a turn coat having switched to the dark side many years ago (think he resembles the milkman a bit).
I wish the club would come out with a statement condemning these disgusting proposals dreamt up by both the red and white shite.
Shane Corcoran
6 Posted 13/10/2020 at 16:57:19
I love these threads Andy. It's a subject that always fascinates me, being a fellow Irishman, as we have an almost unique comparison over here with the GAA.

People from all over the world follow English clubs for no logical reason, me included, and whilst it doesn't make or break my weekend, it does arouse powerful emotions in me.

Not as powerful as the GAA with which you follow the club and county that you were brought up in. The players are all local and so it's simply better when your team wins as you know the players and so you're one of them. I guess it's like Sunday league in soccer, but at a much higher level in terms of fitness, physically etc.

It's such a difference to supporting players from every corner of the world who play for a club in England and who will leave that club should a better opportunity arise.

Despite the differences though, I'm immersed fully in both.

Stephen Brown
7 Posted 13/10/2020 at 21:05:21
From Swansea so no family connection with the Blues!

1984 Cup final as a 6 year old! Something about Andy Gray, Graeme Sharp, Big Nev

Absolutely engrossed ever since! Obsessed with everything Everton ever since as we all are! It really determines my mood! Dominates thoughts!!

I'm glad to say my 13-year-old daughter is a follower but my 6-year-old son has really got the bug! Let's hope he enjoys the same success I enjoyed between The ages 6-9!

Really missing my 10-hour round trip for the match!! Hopefully back soon as can't wait to see James in the flesh!

Tony Abrahams
8 Posted 13/10/2020 at 21:41:37
Even if I knew every Everton player personally Shane, it’s about the supporters for me mate. That’s how I feel anyway, because players come and go, and might have other interests, but for the die-hards, only one thing matters, and although my stomach has no knots, I’m feeling the fire, finally igniting deep inside of me again, because it always feels stronger when we know we are good, or we definitely can be.

The defiance will never leave us, it’s ingrained into our fabric, but it’s different when you’re good, because you have less room for error, and this is what we have to prove to ourselves (or the players do!) to move forward!

And don’t tell me it’s random Andy, you don’t get on a flight just to see a fellow blue you’ve never met, without the will, and that’s what Everton does to us mate - they give us that indescribable will! I think!

Kieran Kinsella
9 Posted 13/10/2020 at 21:49:16
Indoctrinated at Catholic school in Hertfordshire aged 4 by the resident chaplain who was a scouser. We were already too brainwashed to switch allegiance by the time we were old enough to understand the geography involved. All of our class still support Everton almost 40 years later. We used to watch the games in London, and when I lived in Manchester later I used to get the train over to he games. The remaining classmates all supported Spurs but being of the fairweather variety none of them are really active fans any more.
Bill Gall
10 Posted 13/10/2020 at 21:53:36
No parent or grandparent supported either team from Liverpool.
I suppose my start to become an Evertonian started when I played on Goodison Park in 1953 as a schoolboy and changed in the home team dressing room with thoughts of what it would be like to play in front of crowds and change in this environment,

Where I lived if the wind was in the right direction we could hear the cheers from Anfield or Goodison. Then one day we were playing in Walton Hall Park hearing the cheers we walked to Goodison Park and we found they were opening the gates about twenty min from the end and walked in, I done this for a few times and after getting a paper round in about 1953 started going in the boys pen.

The next step after starting an apprenticeship it was the Gladys Street end and then finally a season ticket holder in the paddock at the Gladys end. Next in 1976 I emigrated to Canada and its been an average of 2/5 yrs returning home, always in the season usually Sept/Oct. The thing about Everton is it always takes me back and even though I have lived in Canada longer than I lived in England I always call Liverpool home.


Just celebrated my 80th birthday and I asked my daughter to go with me to climb a steep wooded hill called the Bluff and naturally when I got to the top I had a photo taken with an Everton scarf over my head. I did trip over on the way up but carried on as I was not giving up showing the scarf, after going to the health center that night I found out I had cracked a couple of ribs when I fell, as my wife said stupid person just for a football team, I said it wasn't just a football team it was Everton.

Steve Shave
11 Posted 13/10/2020 at 22:12:14
Great idea for a thread. I was born and raised in Mid Suffolk, all my friends were Ipswich fans, my whole family were Norwich fans. I went to Carrow Road a lot growing up but didn't really fall in love with football until the World Cup 86', aged 9. As you know, we were pretty good then and I think on some basic level I decided to switch allegiance from Norwich to Everton (much to my dad's frustration).

However, it wasn't until a year later that a Scouse family friend who was a blue nose was doing some work in Liverpool and he got to meet Peter Reid, he knew I was a fan and brought me back a signed copy of his book "Everton Winter, Mexian Summer".

I read that book over and over and my obsession with Everton really took hold. I am still a passionate Evertonian, I don't get to many games and live down in Dorset these days but my word does this team have a grip on my emotions! COYB.

Simon Mapstone
12 Posted 13/10/2020 at 22:14:27
Although born on the South coast, I was born in to an Evertonian family. My dad and grandad both supported Everton. I was lucky enough to be able to be christened in St Luke's church in the corner of Goodison Park, much to my younger brother's annoyance (he was never christened, but still supports Everton).

I've tried to indoctrinate my daughter into the Blue ways, but it still hasn't quite taken. Although today a memory popped up on my Facebook account. It's 10 years to the day at 4 weeks old I dressed her up in a ‘'me and my dad support Everton' baby grow. Alongside the "Evertonians are born not manufactured" phrase. Surely that's an omen with us being top of the league! I think I may be searching for omens!

Barry Rathbone
13 Posted 13/10/2020 at 22:20:35
Historically football fandom was built on "rite of passage" normally father taking son to see the local team creating a devotion only matched by religious fervour. It was that way for me and almost every Evertonian of my era.

Man Utd and Liverpool are throwing that down the shute in favour of TV and tourist audiences – marvellous.

Mike Gaynes
14 Posted 13/10/2020 at 22:38:20
Ian #3... "blue and distressed"... beautiful. Made me laugh out loud.

Bill G., I love your story too. Feel better soon.

Michael #1, me too... blue is the color of my beloved Chicago Cubs, and when US TV began showing English league games in the late 1970s -- mostly ManUtd, the RS and the Arse -- I knew I couldn't choose any of them red-wearing bums as my team to support. It took me years to select a club.

The exact moment: One that lent itself to a book title. So Good I Did It Twice. Sheeds' double free kick in the FA Cup tie with Ipswich. I pointed at the TV and said, "That's my player and that's my team!"

Over the years Everton gradually moved from my head into my heart, and reached my soul in 2017, for reasons best described in an article I wrote then (Andy knows this story):
https://www.ToffeeWeb.com/season/16-17/comment/editorial/34817.html%20-%2032

Sheeds remains my favorite player, with Cahill and Bainesy just behind, but there's a new challenger coming up fast. I may even have to order a shirt from the official site with James 19 on the back.

Will Mabon
15 Posted 13/10/2020 at 22:50:09
Father & son thing for me too. Blue family from a red street in Anfield.
John Cook
16 Posted 13/10/2020 at 22:51:32
Andy lad you didn't pick Everton, Everton picked you.

You're a chosen boy, thank your lucky stars.

Eugene Ruane
17 Posted 13/10/2020 at 23:08:01
In many ('cool') films that feature someone taking heroin for the first time, the director will sometimes put together a montage of quick cuts of the process.

It'll be..

Flame heats spoon.

See bubbling brown gear on spoon.

Gear being sucked into needle.

Needle being tapped.

Gear's injected.

Close-up of retina dilating.

Facial expression, I'm hooked (and fucked).

The experience of going to my first game at Goodison age 7, (1966, a night game against Utd) had a very similar immediate 'I'm hooked for ever' effect.

And when we signed Alan Ball, my eyes weren't dilating they were fucking spinning.

UTFT!

Neil Copeland
18 Posted 13/10/2020 at 23:15:59
John #16, spot on.

My dad and grandad were both blue. My first match was in 1971, dad used to take me in the paddock where I stood on a collapsible stool leaning against a barrier. Although I was hooked before I even went to Goodison the game that really did it was the 8-0 demolition of Southampton when Allan Ball became my idol.

I lost dad last year, the final game which I took him to (no stool required ha!) was the FA Cup quarter final against Chelsea which was also my daughters first game. Dad had Parkinson’s and wasnt able enough to attend after that. As we were leaving the ground I asked him if he had enjoyed it to which he replied yes it was great, thanks. A few minutes later he turned to me and asked “what was the score again son?” Made me laugh and still makes me smile now.

Darren Hind
19 Posted 14/10/2020 at 06:04:14
I would love to have a great story about becoming an Evertonian, but I don't. I just was.

I suppose thats why I love these threads. Looking forward to more unfathomable reasons as to how people who had a choice... still chose, to choose us

Dave Williams
20 Posted 14/10/2020 at 11:16:07
It was 1963 and my older cousin came over one Sunday with his parents. He had with him a glossy magazine( black and white in those days) as a souvenir of our title win. We got a football out and kicking it round in the garden he said he would be Roy Vernon and I would be Alex Young. When he went home I got mum and dad to buy me a copy of the magazine and that was it!
Totally hooked, dad took me to the first game of the new season, which I think was a 3-4 home defeat to what was a very good Burnley team.
I have been a passionate and devoted follower ever since and my stomach is also in knots as for once we have a genuine chance on Saturday if our big players perform and the defence doesn’t cock up.
If we win this we can go a long way this season as the injection of confidence will be similar to what “that Sharp goal” did for us in 1984.
Once the club has bitten you it stays with you forever- no true fan can possibly give it up. The colour of the shirt, the sight of Goodison Park, the smells of match day, the hope on faces in the pub beforehand, the thrill when the siren kicks in, the excitement when the team comes out and the absolute ecstasy when we score. The flip side of course is how a weekend can be ruined if we lose, especially the that shower across the park.
It’s caused me a lot of pain over the years but I wouldn’t be without it!
Dave Abrahams
21 Posted 14/10/2020 at 14:43:25
Mike (14),The day Kevin Sheedy took and scored the free kick twice was a happy but sad day at Goodison Park, happy obviously for two great free kicks by Kevin, but sad because Harry Catterick, Everton’s former manager, had a heart attack and died while attending the game.
Rob Halligan
22 Posted 14/10/2020 at 15:30:05
Darren # 19. I'm with you. Was born and bred in Liverpool into a family of blues. End of!!
Jamie Crowley
23 Posted 14/10/2020 at 15:42:44
My story involves American Corporatism, God, blue mushrooms, Irish immigrants, firearms, a striker named Joe, fish puns, an Ashcroft, a two egg omelet, a dude who jumps from airplanes, New Jersey, a lovable grumpy fucker called Marsh, a few beers, the Freshy, Australia, and a rabbit hole.
Jamie Crowley
24 Posted 14/10/2020 at 15:43:42
Oh, and Chicago.
Dave Abrahams
25 Posted 14/10/2020 at 15:52:27
Jamie (23), how did God get mixed in with that lot? I’d love to hear the full story!!
John Pierce
26 Posted 14/10/2020 at 16:10:00
My first kit, was a Liverpool one! The one with Hitatchi as the sponsor. I was about 6/7 in think, I took one look at it and cried. I just hated it, my slightly bonkers granny from Scotland wrongly assumed I’d just follow the herd. Aghast at upsetting her grandson toddled me back to the market stall she got it from and I proudly pointed at the blue one. I didn’t have a clue who it was, I just wanted the blue one.

I’ve always had an aversion to red and I hated being a sheep. Every fucker in the neighborhood support that shower. Somehow through sheer fluke with no blues in the family I picked Everton.

Thank fook for that.

It stuck with me, growing up right in the middle of their best spell, Monday mornings at school were shit, but then the tide turned, it just revealed those tossers for what they are and instead of taking it with anything approaching good grace, they’d beat up anything in blue that moved. Perversely it seemed worth it to see them so angry at someone else’s success.

Weirdos them lot.

Jamie Crowley
27 Posted 14/10/2020 at 16:14:47
Dave -

God is mixed into everything, but you knew that already!

The above is just call-outs to some of my fondest memories and personalities on TW that have solidified my love of Everton over the years.

The real story is in 2007 I decided, for a variety of reasons dating back to childhood and also moving to Florida where it was exceedingly expensive for my kids to play hockey, to get into soccer. So I chose a team.

Everton fit the bill perfectly. Port city similar to my Boston, team that knew suffering, city with Irish heritage like my Boston, etc. In short, Liverpool for me was the Boston of England. And I couldn’t bandwagon jump to the shite. What’s the point of that? And as I’ve stated on here before, I immersed myself in Blue - read about the Club, the players, the history, the city of Liverpool, the people, the customs, etc. I asked a lot of [exceedingly stupid] questions on TW to further my knowledge.

When Joleon Lescott was assaulted by Jamie Carragher in the box, I literally lost my shit, crossed a line, and never looked back.

And something I’ve never mentioned in this story previously, my friendship with former Academy player Steve Ashcroft solidified my Blueness concretely. Ash schooled me in all things Blue, played on my awful 7 aside team named Grand Ol Team, and took me under his Blue wing. The rest is ‘istory. RIP Ash mate.

Chris Williams
28 Posted 14/10/2020 at 16:53:47
I was born into a Blue Catholic family, following on from my Dad and his Dad before him. They were both born and bred in Everton, near SFX.

My Dad told me that his Dad had watched Everton playing at Anfield and also when Goodison was young. He was taken to the match for his 6 th birthday, so that was Stoke City in January 2016, local Lancashire Section match, because of WW1. They won 4-1. His Dad died in 2017.

He was a regular match goer through the 20s and 30s and saw what he always thought of the best Everton teams in their history. He hitchhiked to Wembley in 1933 and bunked in. He always followed that tale with a caution that those were different times son, and you mustn’t do anything like that. And I didn’t.

My first match was Blackburn at home in February 1954. My 6th birthday. A 1-1/draw and Dave Hickson scored, but I had to look that up. That was the season we were promoted and and Liverpool were relegated and we had a big family party to celebrate.

He took me every so often with my much older cousins, but my memory of the games are sketchy, except to say we were pretty mediocre. That I do recall. I used to sit on the crush barrier too.

I started to go in the Boys Pen with my mate about 1957 and graduated to Gwladys Street behind the goal. I started to enjoy the atmosphere and the smells and sounds. I learned words I’d never heard before. There was one man with a blue chin and a hoarse voice who was a creative curser. He once bawled out “ you ponking prick!” at someone and I’ve still no idea what that means, but it has stayed with me.

Bobby Collins arrived and Alex Parker arrived and things took a turn for the better. Tommy Ring arrived and it got better again. The day after his debut, he got 9 in the People, but Collins got 10, the only time I recall seeing that.

And then the world went from monochrome to colour when Vernon, Gabriel, West, Lill, joined quickly to join Collins, Ring, Labone, and things got better in increments. My Dad perked up again and we started to go to the match together, some of the most joyous memories I have of going to Goodison. He stopped saying it was better in my day.And on it went. Wembley 66 (I went down in a 3 wheeler, and I had a ticket), 69/70 and white boots, Ball’s and mine,and it was great and then it wasn’t. The gap between trophies was introduced to me. A regular and lengthening phenomenon.

And the rest of it is well documented. The 1980 s revival, my Dad would have loved that. The PL and Sky era, when football sold its heart and soul. But I did take my son’s, both Blues. I never said it was better in my day,because it was still my day.

Up to date, I took my Grandson for the first time last season. We got beat by Sheffield Utd! He is the 5th generation of my family to go to the match. He loved the sirens and Z Cars.

Then COVID!

My fervent wish is to go again and again with him at Goodison, and then at BMD for as long as I can. It’s a great roller coaster ride for sure, and being Evertonian is character building!

It’s not too much to hope for.

Dale Self
29 Posted 14/10/2020 at 16:56:02
Fair question Andy,
It is because the world is at its core a good and honorable place and Everton represent that. Until someone kicks us in the shin of course. By the way, as an American there were times when I felt more Evertonian than American of late and that was while we were a bit shite.
Chris Ritchie
30 Posted 14/10/2020 at 19:52:53
As a former goalkeeper from New Jersey (a bit older than) Tim Howard, I first learned of the club following his career to Everton in 2007. Tim's story of overcoming Tourette's to become starting national team keeper was an inspiration. Then, watching matches on bootleg internet streams in the days before "Peacock" took a special patience, but the character of the club hooked me: underdogs, 'people's club', dogs of war.. seemed to echo the way that we were brought up to play in our day. (i.e. not much skill but a lot of blood, snot and guts!)

From that point, there also seemed to be connections to my Scottish ancestry with Moyes and later the transparent Messi himself, Steven Naismith. Plus, as an American with no parochial obligations on who to support, and the luxury to choose, Everton was it from then on.

Dave Abrahams
31 Posted 14/10/2020 at 22:14:22
Jamie (27), yes of course, God is mixed into everything, he hasn’t smiled on us for a long time though, maybe he is relenting and giving us Carlo, James, Allan and Doucouré to go with a few already here, he is paving the way and giving us the nod to start preparing to celebrate.

I remember you being very upset when Steve Ashcroft passed away and you told us about meeting him when your sons and Steve’s were playing in a football game and you carried on from there, meeting good people is always special and you never ever forget them, especially when they’ve gone.

Si Cooper
32 Posted 15/10/2020 at 04:51:00
Playing a range of sports was pretty much expected in my family and football was the first we participated in (and remains a constant but not always in the ascendency). My dad enrolled us in the local kids leagues as soon as we were old enough.

Watching sport was also a normal pastime but my Dad was strictly non-partisan. He always told people he supported Accrington Stanley although it wasn't true, perhaps partly to enjoy the bemusement this created. I think another reason was that he came from a ‘Red' tinged family but my Mum's family were blues; he was always likely to subsume his own preferences to keep her happy.

Mum wasn't fervent though and peripheral in our sporting activities. In the early seventies, me and my brothers got Leeds United strips! Didn't bother us because at that time we didn't have one team. My Dad wasn't a regular matchgoer but we got sporadic exposure and we got to see whoever was playing at home on Boxing Day (we also went to Wigan - St Helens derbies although we weren't from either town!). Upshot was that we kids got to choose our own allegiances, although the 2 to pick from could ever only be Everton or the RS. To look beyond ‘our' city would have been absurd.

Everton was just my natural fit when I developed a degree of independent thought In the mid-seventies and decided / was directed by a higher force that I needed to devote myself to a team. It really was a gut and heart choice – I had no real notion of the relative successes of the two teams – but I suppose there must have been subconscious influences, including the preference for that beautiful blue.

Where I really struck lucky, however, was gaining just enough financial acumen and employability as a teenager (we are talking pools / paper rounds and a bit of pocket money) to have sufficient funds to jump on a train and walk up to Goodison to join the queues perhaps a couple of hours before kick-off starting in the 1984-85 season. My match-going was initially accompanied by a like-minded school friend (there were a few of us but we were a small minority), but we were travelling from different places and weren't that bothered if we didn't actually meet up. Ultimately we stopped making joint plans and left it to chance if we bumped into each other (the Gwladys Street was often so packed you just got in as early as you could, claimed a spec in front of a barrier if you could, and then tried to stay put for the ride!).

I was massively fortunate to attend so many outstanding occasions considering it was a fairly random process of selecting the limited number of games I could actually afford to attend. That included the ultimate example of raucous, unrestrained, joyous tribalism that was the European Cup Winners Cup semi-final against Bayern Munich. That electrifying jolt to the system will, I think, reside in me until the day I die.

Truth be told, those few years in the mid-eighties gave me so much that despite the following disappointing decades (1995 FA Cup apart) I am satisfied that I made the right choice for me / was blessed by being chosen. However undimmed the personal passion is, I am hungry for another bout of pre-eminence so others less fortunate than me can fully understand why I am proud to be a Blue.

Wayne Dinkelman
33 Posted 15/10/2020 at 06:04:58
I'm 43 born and raised in Australia and have supported Everton since I was 14. My dad born in Holland was a Liverpool supporter but you would never hear him talk about them or wear their colours, the first time I saw Beardsley in blue something inside me just awoke. From that moment on Everton was my team.

My dad passed when I was 15 and, looking back on it with my mum a few weeks ago, I told her it occurred to me that Everton became my father that day. They taught me to love with all my heart, to cry when you feel like the world is swallowing you but to never give up and never back down, to treat everyone like they are part of my club and to be faithfull, they have helped me become the man I am today and become the father for my children. Good and bad times, my one constant was Everton.

So to all of you out there, thank you for being part of my family and being on this crazy ride we have all journeyed together. Can't wait to meet you all one day at a family reunion on the banks of the royal blue Mersey.

Mike Gaynes
34 Posted 15/10/2020 at 06:14:51
Dave #21, I never knew about that until I read the story a few years ago in one of David France's books.

Chris #30, liked your story. Please post again with more... have you made the pilgrimage? All Yank Blues must, at some point.

Christine Foster
35 Posted 15/10/2020 at 07:34:21
I remember my 5th birthday, my second in Netherton, a "new" town on the outskirts of the city where half of the residents of the Scotland Road area were relocated to as part of slum clearance, the other half on their way to Kirkby. In fairness both places (admittedly very early on) had brand new homes and fields around them, a kids playground after playing in the bombed-out houses in Collingwood Street!

I was born into a red family. There I have said it, it pains me greatly to say it but something in me fought against it in my very being. For my birthday I was given a red and white scarf and bobble hat... I cried and was promptly battered because I was ungrateful. As a result, my Aunt and Uncle (Blues) gave me a Blue scarf and I was taken to the first match of the season at Goodison (not going to tell you what year... I do have some pride, lol).

The dye was cast. It was Blue and always has been ever since. Even as a child it felt right, superior lol.

I have been called lots of things on this site, arrogant, condescending, socialist, (or worse) but that's just uninformed opinion. Truth is I bleed blue. I am proud of who I am, an Evertonian, born and bred.

Steve Ferns
36 Posted 15/10/2020 at 08:02:37
Darren, I'm the same, but what about following John McFarlane's example? How far back do you go?

John, that's amazing that you go right back to the start. I was discussing this with the Esk on twitter. He can trace back 128 years.

Thinking on it, I wouldn't be that far off myself. My dad was a blue, as were both his brothers. His dad was a blue. He was born in the early ‘20's as he was a teenage soldier in WW2. I recall him telling me about seeing an old Dixie Dean playing for Everton. I'm pretty sure he said his Dad was a blue as well, but no idea how far back he goes. I can only assume it's back before 1920.

Back to the start though, that's impressive.

John Keating
37 Posted 15/10/2020 at 08:20:42
So full of admiration and awe of out of town and overseas blues who are so devoted to the Club. A lot easier for us locals who could walk to the ground and born into Blue families.

Football itself has changed over the years – not all for the good. Matchdays have changed – no longer able to stop at every pub in Great Homer Street and County Road.

The only thing that's not changed is the sense and devotion of everyone who supports Everton.

James Edwards
38 Posted 15/10/2020 at 08:38:53
I was born in Edge Hill. I remember my first Everton game we beat Man City 2-0, who were Champions at the time. I went to the game with a lad called Keith Joyliffe, I was 11, he was not much older... we ended up in the Boys Pen.

I left Liverpool not long after, moved to North Wales. I still get to Goodison when I can.

Bill Watson
39 Posted 15/10/2020 at 08:51:05
Darren #19

Same here. Why did I choose Everton? I have no idea apart from blue being my favourite colour as a child. No history for any club, at all, in my family.
First home game v West Ham, in 1958, and missed very few since then.

Chris Williams
40 Posted 15/10/2020 at 08:51:07
Sorry about typos in my previous post. My Dad's first match was in January 1916 (not 2016 as shown) his Dad died in 1917 not 2017. He was born in 1883, and was going to the matches pre Goodison Park, at Anfield and in the early days at Goodison from 1892 or thereabouts.
Michael Nisbet
41 Posted 15/10/2020 at 09:20:25
Born and raised in Shetland, I knew nothing about English football. I was a big Aberdeen fan, and most of the Aberdeen fans I knew started following Man Utd due to the Alex Ferguson link. I never liked Man Utd, and didn't like the idea of following a team who were already on top.

I started looking for an English team to follow. My friend started to support Blackburn, but I wanted to go my own way. I looked at many teams. Arsenal – they were decent, but were boring to watch at the time, Wolves – I liked the orange strip, but I never connected. Newcastle – I liked the strip, and I also have relations near Newcastle so I almost went that direction.

It just so happened that I had another friend from school, who was from Liverpool. He was a big Everton fan, and I remember us all watching the Merseyside derby in November 1994. When Duncan Ferguson scored to put Everton in front, I was mesmerised. My friend was going mental, and it was infectious. From then on, there was no other option. I was a Toffee.

John Keating
42 Posted 15/10/2020 at 09:36:59
James 38,

Didn't Keith move to North Wales too? Sure he was few years below me at Cardinal Godfrey?

Dave Abrahams
43 Posted 15/10/2020 at 09:48:06
Like John Keating (37), I love reading about the Everton fans from far away places who record how they got to following us, just brilliant, and you are Everton fans even if you've never been to Goodison Park. I'm like John never lived more than a 10-minute walk from Goodison and I've lived in six different houses.

My first “big team” game was at Anfield, watching them beat Huddersfield 4-0. I liked it, because it was a football match. I went to Goodison Park the next week, ran up the steps of the Boys Pen and looked around... Wonderland!

We got battered 2-0 by Arsenal, but it didn't matter. I was picked, from above, to be a Bluenose, wasn't I lucky!!

Steve Oshaugh
44 Posted 15/10/2020 at 09:56:57
I'm from New Zealand and the only football fan in a rugby family, so had absolutely no allegiances at all. 3 reasons:

- Neville Southall... just fell in love with him from the first game I saw him play;
- Blue is my favourite colour;
- It was the mid-80s and everyone seemed to be a Liverpool fan so I went in another direction to be contrarian ˜ thank goodness.

I didn't even know that Everton was in Liverpool at the time... lol. Once I started reading up on the history and got a feel for the Everton Way, I was hooked. Been a committed fan since '84.


Derek Thomas
45 Posted 15/10/2020 at 10:09:09
Dave Abrahams @ 43; Re far away. I sometimes had to get the 500 from Speke, does that count as far away?
James Edwards
46 Posted 15/10/2020 at 10:09:59
Jonn @42,

I lost contact with all my friends when I left. I think Keith lived in Acton Street, where my mum's family lived, the Graces.

Tony Hill
47 Posted 15/10/2020 at 10:11:59
My grandfather was born in 1874 and saw the 1906 team returning with the FA Cup.

It doesn't matter when it hits the veins though.

Dave Abrahams
48 Posted 15/10/2020 at 10:20:09
Derek (45), yes it does, as long as you came off a plane in Speke to catch your bus!!
Rob Halligan
49 Posted 15/10/2020 at 10:21:51
Derek, you were really out in the sticks at Speke, or so I thought it at the time, as I thought Speke was miles away. I used to get the 46 from Penny Lane to the bottom of Spellow Lane.

And yes, there really was a "pretty nurse" selling poppies from a tray. Though not so pretty from what I remember.

Andrew Clare
50 Posted 15/10/2020 at 10:23:59
Great to read these posts from fans far and wide.

My grandad was a foreman on Albert Dock and lived in Bootle where my father was born – both were Evertonians so our family dates back to the beginnings of the club. All of my father's side of the family were/are Evertonians. Even my mother's brother was an Evertonian and he was from a Surrey village.

When my dad took me to Goodison in 1963, I was amazed. The stadium and the atmosphere was incredible. The blue and white stands the green pitch really made an impression on me as a young boy. Also, we had an incredible team in those days.

Mark Murphy
51 Posted 15/10/2020 at 10:26:57
I was born and lived 12 miles door to door from Goodison Park. Trouble is, I was within the St Helens border (Sutton Oak) so, as far as many “real blues” were concerned, I was an outsider and a wool.

I learned quickly to tell the time in Scouse on arrival at Lime Street (Der's a fucken big clock up der, softlad!) and it was no fun being pointed at by my 3 star jumper, platform shoes wearing mate from Halewood when the Gwladys Street sang the Wooly Back song!

Funny thing is, until I was 10, it looked like I'd be a Man Utd fan. My first proper kit was Man Utd and my next-door neighbour took me to several games at Old Trafford – the last one a 2-1 win v Burnley – amongst the scorers, Dennis Law with a bicycle kick right in front of me. George Best was my hero then and I even met him when he opened his first boutique in Manchester – my dad was the Site Foreman for Laing who built it.

Then Saint John Cliffe took me and the St Anne's RC under 11s to a night match – Derby County at home, League Cup, 1968. And I was smitten. It was a 0-0 draw on a misty autumn evening under the lights and the pitch was magically luminous.

From then on, I went regularly – my dad made me and my mate Kev (St John Cliffe's son) wooden stools to see over the Paddock wall – and I enjoyed being thrown into the air by strangers whenever Bally scored. In particular, I remember the Colchester Utd home game when we played in Amber and them in Red. Why was that?

I've never regretted it – even when Man Utd were winning everything – and I'll forever be grateful to Mr Cliffe.

Gerard Carey
52 Posted 15/10/2020 at 10:29:59
In a word (or 2!!), Alan Ball!!!

I thought he was the bees' knees, as they say. Really took to Everton after the '68 FA Cup Final. Then to win the League in '70 was unreal for a kid. I had got a pennant of the League winners with all the players on it it, hung in the bedroom for years.

When Alan Ball left to join Arsenal in '71, my world was shattered, but the real love took over and I have been a Blue ever since, through thick and thin.

Living in Cork, hurling takes a big part too but, as has been said above by some, the Blues dictate a good or bad weekend.

I really think you are born into the family and wouldn't change any of it. After adversity, maybe... just maybe we are coming again!!

Jay Woods
53 Posted 15/10/2020 at 10:36:51
Because from a toddler, I had a bizarre fixation on the colour blue and antipathy towards red. This didn't lead to anything in footballing terms until the League Cup Final between LFC and EFC. Their kit looked vile to me, with those yellow pinstripes on the red looking so garish and ugly compared to our clean blue and white.

That was it. I have no family or any other connections with the city of Liverpool. It was all down to the colour of our kit in my juvenile mind.

Vijay Nair
54 Posted 15/10/2020 at 10:51:06
I was a 7-year-old in Singapore 1985, watching World of Sport incorporating English Football with my late Manchester United loving grandfather. It was a blue team (us) against a red team (the kopites), I, like Jay in the comment above, had an affinity to the colour blue. And that's where the journey began for me.

35 years later, I'm now in Australia, but trying to instill that same blue affinity into my son!

Derek Thomas
55 Posted 15/10/2020 at 10:53:01
Dave @ 48; the nearest flight direct flight from Brisbane is to Manchester.

Before all this Covid rubbish started, I was making plans to get over for one of the get-togethers and was toying with going to Dublin for a day or two, doing the Guinness tour and sampling at the source. Then up to Aberdeen or wherever and do a few distilleries. Then back to Speke.

Graham Lloyd
56 Posted 15/10/2020 at 11:52:15
Born on the North Wales coast in 72 but Sydney Australia has been been the place I call home since 2001. My Dad and elder brother were both big Man U supporters so they were surprised why I ended up a Blue. I don't exactly recall when I knew I was a Blue but I'm sure back in the day of live TV on the BBC there was an EFC game against Man U where Latchford scored and we ended up winning (maybe?). I would have been only 7 or 8 maybe.

When we moved into the glory years I remember to this day when Sharp scored in the derby as I was sat on the floor in the lounge, crying when we lost the FA Cup final to both Man U and that other lot across the road. Crying again when we won the ECWC and then the despair of the team being disbanded after the Euro ban from which the club entered and remained in limbo land (and probably cried again!).

What is great about being a Blue is sites likes this. Where the sometimes hysterical nonsense is balanced with constant reminders of how good it is, no matter how crap we have been, that we are Everton.

I don't post often on here as I often struggle to keep up with the velocity of content. This eveing, I have a spare few minutes so I'd like to share why I think this ToffeeWeb site keeps life in balance.

Over all the years of reading this site, I recall so many highlights. The "Rafael Benez Us" quirp, the foresight of Glasser (Lukaku transfer), the melancholy of Bennings (various - end of Martinez - Silva years), the obvious hysteria (too many), and some of the outright comedy geniuses (too many) during that Villa tharashing of the chumps across the road.

My favourite though without doubt takes me back to 2017. I was in a bit of a foul mood in Ho Chi Minh airport awaiting our flight back home after a glorious 2 week family holiday in Vietnam. My wife and son had gone of in search of entertainment to fill the 4 hour wait leaving me to consume a few beers in peace before the flight home. I flip open the laptop and browse to this site as usual and see an interesting title. "32 Years, 32 Seconds: My Delirious Goodison Pilgrimage" authored non other by regular US contributor and general voice of reason Mr Mike Gaynes.

If by some chance you haven't read the article then do yourself a favour and ensure you do.

I read it once, then twice and then ordered myself another beer with the biggest grin on my face you could ever imagine. I then read it again. Absolute gold and congrats to all involved!

The best thing about being a blue is not the players, the team or the club. It's all of us in this together.

Up the Blues!

ps - 3-2 home win on Sat. You heard it here first

Dave Abrahams
57 Posted 15/10/2020 at 12:03:05
Derek (55), well whenever you do make it back “home” you will be sure of a good welcome at one of the ToffeeWeb meetings, hope it is soon!!
Brian Harrison
58 Posted 15/10/2020 at 12:21:28
Like many I went to Goodison with My Dad and Brother when I was about 6/7, I am now 72 and still going to Goodison and will do when we are allowed back.

I have also got both my Sons and Grandson watching the Blues, so with me its a hereditary thing. Mind little did I know that when I was watching Tommy Eglinton and Cyril Lello and Wally Fielding and the great Dave Hickson play that following this great club would turn me into a neurotic.

Back then, we only found out the side when you turned up at the ground, where now we get daily bulletins about the fitness of the whole squad. So now I find myself worrying about whether so and so will be fit at the weekend, and of course from Wednesday onwards I start worrying about our opponents.

Then the bigger picture of will we win a trophy, will we qualify for Europe, even in my 20s I don't remember worrying about such things. To add to that I now worry about our new stadium: Will it get built? Will I live long enough to see a game there?

As I say, while I have enjoyed every minute of following our great club, it's definitely turned me into a neurotic... has it affected anybody else the same way?

Kevin Molloy
59 Posted 15/10/2020 at 12:42:15
Mike,

Sheedy's always been my favourite player, I was at Goodison and remember well the delirium when he put the free kick in twice in different corners. there was just a wonderful wonderful arrogance about Sheeds.

I remember one of his rare interviews, I think it was the free-kick he scored against Liverpool and he was asked for his thoughts about it. Most players would have said 'I was just lucky enough it see it hit the back of the next bla bla' but I remember Kevin saying in his Welsh accent, 'Well I just hit it right, and it flew in, didn't it'.

Peter Mills
60 Posted 15/10/2020 at 20:00:51
I’m one of the “I had no choice” band.

And that was wonderful, as it took me through the 60s. Then, just before the end of that decade, came a strange 0-3 defeat at home to the rs. Yes, we subsequently became Champions, but that match was one of those “this is not how things should be” moments.

It’s been mostly a tough last 50 years since then. Have I ever regretted being born into an Everton family in that time? Not for a millisecond.

Bill Gall
61 Posted 15/10/2020 at 20:32:18
Jamie #23

Your mention of God took me to a tale after I first got married in 1961. In them days, mixed marriages were sometimes frowned upon, especially a Liverpool supporter marrying an Evertonian. In my case, I was Church of England and my wife was Catholic.

One day, she said the local priest was coming around and he would try to convert me; he came and started talking and asked me if I would like to change? I said "No, I am staying an Evertonian." He laughed and said "So am I!" And to my wife's disgust, we just talked about football.

We will be celebrating our 60th anniversary next year, nothing's changed... still a proud, staunch Evertonian.

Brent Stephens
62 Posted 15/10/2020 at 20:42:33
Bill, when my wife-to-be told her priest she was going to get married and he found out I was a proddy dog, he said “why can’t you find yourself a decent Catholic?”

We’ve been married ever since.

Mike Gaynes
63 Posted 15/10/2020 at 20:52:26
Graham #56, thank you, that's nice of you to say. I'm so glad my scribblings lightened your layover that day!

And you're absolutely right about the "all of us in together" aspect. My favorite fallout from that article was that the comments section accidentally produced several reconnections between old friends and schoolmates... some of whom hadn't been in touch for 30 or 40 years.

Contributing to that community feeling is what Blue-ism is all about.

Chris Ritchie
64 Posted 15/10/2020 at 20:53:59
Thanks Mike @34, no I haven't made the pilgrimage yet but I read your fantastic story of yours with envy! Hope to make it before the end of the Goodison era.
Derek Moore
65 Posted 15/10/2020 at 21:08:17
I was born in Liverpool, have most of my family there even now, and am at least a fifth generation Evertonian. I literally cannot remember a moment where I wasn't an Evertonian. My earliest footballing memory is of Norman Whiteside ruining my fifth birthday and robbing us of a treble.

Despite all that, I am still in awe of my blue brethren who don't happen to be from the city (or even the northern hemisphere!). It was easy for me, those before me had worked it out and guided me and my older brother accordingly. I sometimes ask would I have ended up a supporter of this club without those advantages of family and birth? I'll never know although I'd like to think I would have.

To the foreign born blues I'd just like to say how much I respect and admire each one's journey to being an Evertonian. Amazing. Back in Brian Labone's day, the exchange rate was twenty to one. It's much much higher than that now. Gaynes on his own would be worth most of the RS supporter base, throw in Hind and Glassar and there aren't enough RS in the world to swing that transaction.

You'll have to grow the Norwegian population significantly if you want to get back in the game, Klippetty!

Great thread, and long may it continue. As an aside, does anyone know if we have any Scandinavian blues on here who are regular? We seem to have a good mix of support from just about everywhere except there, right?

Stan Schofield
66 Posted 15/10/2020 at 21:15:23
Neil@18: That 8-0 win against Southampton. New electronic scoreboard at the Park End:

7 9 7 9 8 9 9 7

I think there was snow on the pitch.

Tim Greeley
67 Posted 15/10/2020 at 21:30:33
My two longest tenured fandoms are for the NY Yankees and NY Giants as determined by Dad, grandfather, uncles etc... I'm 41 and have experienced quite my fair share of their success. So when it was time to buckle up my jolly ol English Soccer Fan socks, I went and chose the English version of the NY METS and NY JETS why?!?

Tony Hibbert, that's why! Mostly it had to do with my wife being pregnant with our first daughter and me having a copy of FIFA 08. She fell asleep every night at like 7:30 and I had a lot of time to play FIFA and get drunk on the couch by myself. Didn't want to pick any of the "teams" that I knew like MU, RS, Chelsea so went to the next level, milliseconds away from selecting Newcastle but I like blue better and the Tim Howard NJ connection was there.

Well, Tiny Electronic Tim Cahill must've scored 50 headers that season, the Yak was fed, Arteta and Carsley ran the mid, Jose Baxter was primed for greatness and I think Andrea Pistone was involved.

Wow. And here we are.

Will Mabon
68 Posted 15/10/2020 at 21:39:42
Stan, that scoreboard looked amazing in the day - like seeing colour TV through someone's front room window at night for the first time.

In all these fantastic recollections above, and to others reading, does anyone remember seeing Bill in the Boys Pen?

Dave Abrahams
69 Posted 15/10/2020 at 21:44:02
Bill (61) my story is the same as yours, only the other way round, same year 1961, I went to see my priest about getting married, not to him!!

He told me I couldn't marry a Protestant, nearly told him to do one! Instead, I went to see my wife's city slicker (vicar) and he had it all arranged in three weeks, no problems, except he put November instead of October on the marriage certificate, but no ones perfect!!

We got married again a few years later, so when I went to mass I could receive communion, those days if you got married in a Protestant church you couldn't receive communion when you went to mass.

Strangely enough the priest giving my wife instructions about the Catholic faith tried to convert her, but she told him she was happy with her own religion. She doesn't follow her religion, I do, but she's a much better Christian than me.

Stan Schofield
70 Posted 15/10/2020 at 21:49:37
Will @68: The first time I watched a colour TV? It was the FA Cup final in 1971, Liverpool v Arsenal, I was in a mate's house surrounded by reds. My main memory is the Arsenal fans singing, “Nice one Charlie, nice one son, nice one Charlie, let's have another one”, over and over after Charlie George scored to put Arsenal 2-1 up and go on to win. It was great!
Bill Gall
71 Posted 15/10/2020 at 22:02:45
Dave, I think in them days I seem to remember (these days sometimes I can't remember what I had for breakfast), you weren't legally married until you signed with the registrar. It may have changed.
Will Mabon
72 Posted 15/10/2020 at 22:27:49
A nice baptism, Stan. Nothing like the first time, eh?

I watched that final in black & white as I remember, right before we went colour.

Stan Schofield
73 Posted 15/10/2020 at 22:51:39
Will, yes, everyone was quite excited in the buildup, colour teles being a real novelty. But with all the reds in the room, it was very subdued at the end. I think I managed to keep a straight face!
Jay Harris
74 Posted 15/10/2020 at 23:30:36
It's getting a bit like ancestry.com.

I started going in the late '50s with my grandad, uncle and dad.

We used to walk up Scotland Road and Everton Valley, past Stanley Park and then through the turnstiles in Goodison Road.

I remember they used to pass me over the turnstile and slip the gateman something (no family enclosure then). And they used to sit me on the lean-to bars that were all around the terrace.

Gates of over 60,000 for the big games. Nothing has ever come close to that feeling when the Goodison roar went up.

It has always been in the family from my great grandfather watching them around 1890 through my dad watching Dixie Dean as a kid but his favourite player was always Tommy Lawton and he said the greatest player he had ever seen in an Everton shirt was T G Jones. He loved the Golden Vision too but I preferred The Welsh Wizard. His favourite none Everton player was Duncan Edwards who got killed in the Munich air crash.

For those lucky enough to have been at the Bayern Munich night, it will remain etched in your memory forever.

I feel so lucky to have seen so many league titles and cups won and feel so bad for the kids of today that, in the recent past, we have had to put up with so much crap. Hopefully that is about to change for the better.

Being a Blue is not like religion. I could never give up on them and they dictate my mood and emotions every day.

It also gives us a brotherhood based on proper values and common interest.

"Born, not manufactured"

Jay Harris
75 Posted 16/10/2020 at 03:47:42
While we are being nostalgic, does anyone remember the half-time score cards they used to lay against the Paddock wall which was lettered A to Z, as were the pools coupons then, I think.
Christine Foster
76 Posted 16/10/2020 at 07:16:35
Jay, I remember the half time score cards very well, the gasps and laughter when the other lot were losing, as well as the Toffee woman throwing Toffee mints before the game, what a scramble..
I remember being hit when pillows reigned down from the stands, the height of displeasure! and the games of 60,000 plus fans, when you could lift your legs up and be carried out through the gates at the end of the game, or getting in as a kid for the last 20 mins when they opened the gates.. running down past Stanley park and down the valley to make sure I got back in before Dr Who started, picking up a football pink Echo from the top of Dryden street when it came out... some 30 mins after the game finished. The sheer thrill of belonging to something wonderful. My club.
Christine Foster
77 Posted 16/10/2020 at 07:25:26
Anyone remember the Boys Pen before they put up the wire mesh to stop them from climbing over the railings?

Or the mini Toffee Lady and Kopite on the top of the Pink Echo with rattles, looking happy or sad depending on whether the teams won or not!

Nicholas Ho
78 Posted 16/10/2020 at 07:25:42
First acquaintance with Everton, 1985 - League Champions... defeated by extra-time goal of Whiteside in the FA Cup Final. Odd enough, love Everton FC from there on till today despite lots of my countrymen loving winners Man Utd.

Just my gut feelings, Everton is my team for life, rain or shine... COYB


Alan McGuffog
79 Posted 16/10/2020 at 08:21:33
Christine...

Always went to my nan's in Langham Street, by the Blue House, for my tea after the match. We got our Footie Echo a bit later... about 6:30, from the shop next to Ossie Wades on Walton Lane.

To this day, I'm still intrigued as to why, in the results, some teams were in heavy type: The Reds and Tranmere, okay. Chester, Southport maybe... But Shrewsbury? Cardiff?

Christine Foster
80 Posted 16/10/2020 at 08:55:11
Alan, for some reason, I never went into the Blue House although my uncles who would take me the match would leave me outside while they had a post-match pint!

Re the type, I suspect that it was because of the coverage, it used to be the Liverpool Echo and Daily Post so the geographical spread (interest) was North Wales... but Cardiff?? No idea!

Jon Harding
81 Posted 16/10/2020 at 09:11:19
I've never lived in Liverpool (or Merseyside) but consider myself a loyal Blue through my dad who came from Childwall. Luckily when I was a kid, my grandma still lived in the house my dad grew up in, so we used to go visit her and then go the match. I was there in the old Park End when Latchford scored his 30th.

Not sure why my dad was a Blue. Too late to ask him now, I'm afraid. Don't recall my grandad being bothered about football at all. But when my family did a Goodison stadium tour, my dad (by now a senior business executive) went to pieces when he heard his boyhood hero, Dave Hickson, would be taking us round.

The good news is that, in my elder son, we now have a third generation as passionate about Everton as his grandad. “Two teams every weekend, son – Everton and whichever team is playing Liverpool.”

We manage to get up from Bristol for a few games every season, not easy as Ben plays a lot of football himself. I used to get tickets in the new Park End or the Main Stand but last season we were in the Lower Gwladys for the 3-2 win over Wolves with Richarlison's late header to win it right in front of us. He won't sit (well, stand) anywhere else now. Apologies if you're ever behind his 6ft-6in lanky frame.

I call him “an honorary Scouser” and he's currently spreading the good word and deriding plastic reds at uni in Birmingham.

UTFT

Will Mabon
82 Posted 16/10/2020 at 09:25:35
Joe, I like that "Two teams" thing.
Will Mabon
83 Posted 16/10/2020 at 09:28:59
Make that "Jon"!
Dave Abrahams
84 Posted 16/10/2020 at 09:46:23
Those half time scoreboards carried on from A to Z with hearts, diamonds, clubs and spades.

The heavy type in the Echo included all the Merseyside teams, Southport, Tranmere, New Brighton also Chester and Wrexham but I don't recall Cardiff.

As for coloured TV, I think the Everton v WBA was the first FA Cup Final to be televised but only on BBC Two.

Jon Harding
86 Posted 16/10/2020 at 10:24:50
Cheers, Will. It's Jonathan really.

My dad was an intelligent and rational man except when it came to the RS. I remember him giving Alan Kennedy dog's abuse throughout one half from the Bullens Road. Perhaps he was ahead of his time but never having lived in the city I can't quite generate that level of enmity myself.

Incidentally one of my son's uni flatmates has an LFC tattoo but has never seen a game at Anfield. Bizarre!

Bill Gall
87 Posted 16/10/2020 at 16:27:50
Christine, I remember the Boys Pen well I was about 13, when I used to go in there, so that is 1953, I used to get the Pink Echo sent out to me when I lived in Saskatchewan before they stopped printing it.

It was the mid-1990s before they showed any Premier League games on TV and usually it was Man Utd so the only time you could see Everton was if they were playing.

Don't remember seeing Bill Kenwright in the Boys Pen but I don't think they would allow Uncle Cyril in with his bicycle.

Jay Harris
88 Posted 16/10/2020 at 18:06:55
I was in the Boys Pen when we won the title in 1963 and remember everyone climbing over the railings and running onto the pitch.

It would be called antisocial behaviour now but the feeling of being on that pitch with all of our heroes was incredible.

Dave Lynch
89 Posted 16/10/2020 at 21:47:07
Because I am and always will be.

When my time comes to leave this mortal coil I will thank the lord personally.
I love being an Evertonian despite all it's foibles.

Darragh Farrell
90 Posted 16/10/2020 at 22:06:31

Passed on from my father. The strong Irish connection to the club in the 1950s made him a supporter. Looking back, some of my fondest memories growing up in Dublin is with him trying to pick-up MW commentary on our games, trying to listen to a mid-week match - invariably a disappointing FA or League Cup defeat to someone like West Ham or Wimbledon.

Here's to sharing a win tomorrow.

Chris Williams
91 Posted 17/10/2020 at 07:38:59
The half-time scoreboard on the wall was also used to show Everton's full-time scores when playing away.

I remember being at one reserve game in 1958 and it showed X-4.

I needed it explained to me. Tottenham!

Cue Highway Patrol jokes and pisstaking for a long time...

Keith Dempsey
92 Posted 19/10/2020 at 19:57:57
The 1st match I ever saw was the 68 cup final and I remember saying to my dad who are the team in yellow to which he replied if you support them you'll be hooked on them for ever and 54yrs later I wish I could ask himhow he knew.

Rick Tarleton
93 Posted 20/10/2020 at 10:42:30
For me becoming an Evertonian was a strange event. I came from a family of reds and in 1953, I first took an interest in football, I was seven. It was the year of the Matthews final and I remember listening to it on the radio. So when Matthews came to our city (Dec5th, 1953), I was taken to see him play against Liverpool.
Liverpool won 5-2 and I remember little of the game.
My dad was at this stage a seaman and when he was home he liked to go to the match, two months later he was home again and Everton were in the second division at that time, but we went to see Plymouth Argyle and Everton won 8-4, in my long football supporting career that was the only twelve goal game I've seen.
John Willie Parker scored four goals, but it was Dave Hickson who made me a blue, his dashing, all-action style and distintive appearance captured my imagination, so I became a blue in a family of reds.
At the end of that season Liverpool and Everton criss-crossed as Liverpool were relegated and Everton promoted and that cemented my Everton allegiance.
We went to games at both grounds throughout the fifties and both teams were very ordinary as Wolves and the Busby Babes dominated things.
I remember when I was eighteen my dad took me to the Dublin Packet to meet William Ralph Dean. My dad knew him from the days when his brother, the great Nel Tarleton, and Dean had been big pals and even tap-dancing together. I spent a whole afternoon with the great man, sitting drinking tea after the pub officially closed. He was a lovely, modest man and spoke well of Alex Young and Roy Vernon.
My relatives have often teased me over the years for making the "wrong choice". I didn't. I made the right choice, Everton have become ingrained in my DNA and a son and grandson are carrying on the tradition even though we live miles away. My grandson(11)is in fact, quite a good player, he's a keeper and has been frequently to goalkeeping sessions with Leicester City. He always wears his Everon kit when he goes, which is quite a brave thing to do.
Tony Abrahams
94 Posted 20/10/2020 at 11:40:47
The real reason I’m an Evertonian is because of my father, and thank fuck for that Dave, because I honestly could never be like a lot of those c**ts!

(Sorry I’ve got a few good red mates, people I respect, but these are people who understand deep down, that they’ve got loads of absolute barm-pots)

Christine Foster
95 Posted 20/10/2020 at 12:13:22
Rick, wonderful story, great family history, the pride shines through in grandchildren!
Andy Crooks
96 Posted 20/10/2020 at 19:16:08
Rick, you spent an afternoon with Dixie Dean? How brilliant, how lucky. Your uncle tap danced with him? I would love to hear that story. Thanks to everyone for those great stories and memories.
Rick Tarleton
97 Posted 20/10/2020 at 19:43:20
I was briefed by my dad not to use the nickname. My dad called him Bill and I think I called him Mr Dean. Nel Tarleton my uncle was the first British boxer to win two Lonsdale belts and had two world title fights. He and Dean were big mates and apparently used to do a tap dancing thing at charity dos in the city in the thirties.
Trevor Powell
98 Posted 21/10/2020 at 17:52:28
My Dad was a sort of floating supporter. He went to the 1950 F A Cup Final between Arsenal and the RS. He was an avid supporter of the successful Prescot Cables during the fifties and I was taken to regular games from the age of six!

My Uncle Harry, Dad's older brother was solid Blue and he told me stories of my Grandfather taking him to see the Blues in the thirties! He also told me my Grandfather was in the crowd to see Dixie Dean score his sixtieth goal in 1928! Harry married into quite an affluent family and in the sixties inherited two club shares!

My mother was from Ipswich and her older brother was a life-long season ticket holder for over seventy years. In 1961, ITFC got promoted to the First Division for the first time as expected relegation fodder. So, my Dad took me to watch EFC v ITFC for my first game in September 1961.

We took the No.10 bus from Longview to the Old Swan for the No. 69 football bus to Goodison. TV football was rare so I had no idea how big Goodison would be, but I remember walking onto the Bullens Road Paddock and being awestruck. The Blues won 5-2 that day and the predictions of a swift return to Division Two to play lowly clubs like the RS were well founded. Well, EFC went down there in the new Year and were tanned 4-1 by these 'doomed' agricultural. For the younger on the site, Ipswich were on their way to a Leicester style championship win, under the tutelage of one Alf Ramsey!

I was hooked and my Dad or Uncle Harry would take me to occasional games. Harry had a season ticket in the Upper Bullens at the Gwladys Street end. If Harry could not go to a home match, he would let my Dad have his season ticket. My Dad would shell out the princely sum of one shilling (5p) for the pleasure of standing in the Boy's Pen! My Dad would always take me in the Paddock on other games.

I spent my senior education at Prescot Grammar School were Blues were in the minority! At PGS in 1966, our PE teacher was Jim Ford, the brother of David Ford of SWFC who scored their second goal in the 1966 Final. I anticipated the stick us Blues would get from Jim Ford had Trebilcock not stepped in!

I could go on and on about my association with the club and will finish with a quote from Friends Reunited. A lad, Tim Jupp, who I taught 'O' level geography on the South Coast near Brighton, wrote, "Imagine my horror when I opened my exam paper and found that there were no questions about Everton or cricket!"

Trevor Powell
100 Posted 21/10/2020 at 18:13:24
Re: Christine Foster @77 "The mini Toffee Lady and Kopite on the top of the Pink Echo with rattles, looking happy or sad depending on whether the teams won or not!"

They always depicted a draw with either character pulling a drawing pin out of their backsides! I used to a paperboy from Barlows Newagents in the sixties. Taking out the football echo (Sorry I could never call it the football pink!) on Saturday evenings, those Toffee lady and koppite logos were printed on the top band of the newspaper as you described! The front page always had a report of whoever played at home, and the back page for the team that played away. Of course, that was in the day, when football matches were played on Saturdays!!!!

Jay Harris
101 Posted 21/10/2020 at 18:18:53
Rick,
Great story.

My Dad used to go on about your uncle Nel and Dixie (Sorry William Ralph).

They were 2 of his idols.

Dave Abrahams
102 Posted 22/10/2020 at 10:19:23
Trevor (98), there was a Scouser in that Ipswich team, Larry Carberry, from the Scotland Road area, Larry won three league titles with Ipswich, third div.south, second div, and the first division as you say.

Alf Ramsay said of Larry “ There were only three or four people from football who I would invite to my house, Larry Carberry was one of them.

Three titles and Larry finished up working on the docks in Liverpool, I had a drink with Larry a few times in Ned Kelly’s and always enjoyed his company, a very modest man and a gentleman.

Trevor Powell
103 Posted 22/10/2020 at 10:58:24
Thanks Dave, I wanted to get myself a copy of the programme and eventually found it on E-bay about fifteen years ago. When it arrived there was a lovely letter inside from the widow of the owner. It seems that Ipswich's promotion took everyone by surprise and her husband in particular. They had already booked a holiday for Summer 1961. The husband clearly thought that the Town would not survive but desperately wanted to see his beloved team at the big stadiums like Goodison, Highbury etc He calculated that if they cancelled their holiday, they could go to eight great away stadiums. Reluctantly, she agreed but really enjoyed the experiences they had together. I wrote back to thank her and told her my story and that I was a fan and not a trade dealer etc. She wrote back that her husband would have been so pleased to know that somebody who was at the game now was the proud possessor of the programme. It is framed on my model railway room wall!


Dave Abrahams
104 Posted 22/10/2020 at 19:10:51
Rick (93), when you talk of the great Nel Tarleton you don’t over rate him, I grew up listening to old boxing fans talking of how brilliant a boxer he was, old style, hit and move along with his brother in law? Ernie Roderick, who went fifteen rounds with Henry Armstrong, who held three world titles.

Regarding your Uncle Nel, could you confirm that he fought with only one lung, or was that an exaggeration of his condition. Thanks for the Bill (Dixie) story.

John McFarlane Snr
105 Posted 22/10/2020 at 19:31:38
Hi Rick [93] You may recall that I told you that my uncle Phil was a boyhood friend of Nel, when they lived in the Low Hill area of Liverpool, Phil lived in Phythian Street. My Auntie Nora claimed that she taught Nel to dance in 'Pepper's Ballroom' on the corner of Everton Road and Aubrey Street, I grew up in 75 Everton Road about 50 yards from Pepper's.
Martin Nicholls
106 Posted 23/10/2020 at 09:40:46
Rob Halligan#49 - I too used to get the 46 bus from Penny Lane to Spellow Lane. After game, I used to go into Spellow Cafe to listen to scores and reports over a cup of tea and a piece of toast - I was old before my time!
We had moved from Garston Old Road to Plattsville Road (remember Woolies on the corner?) in 1957 and lived there until 1968 - a great area in which to spend your teenage years in those days! Where did you live and what junior school did you attend (I went to Dovedale Rd then on to Liverpool Institute)?
My first game was home to Forest in March 1963 and I well remember walking to Goodison (and back) up Queens Drive on at least one occasion in the 1960's during a bus strike.
Rob Halligan
107 Posted 23/10/2020 at 10:12:02
Hi Martin. I was born in Sefton general hospital in1959, when my family lived in Granville road, off Smithdown road. We moved to Pitville avenue off Rose lane, in, I think 1966, but we were only there for a couple of years before moving up to Gateacre.

I too went to Dovedale, infants and primary, before going to Hillfoot Hey in Hunts Cross.

My first game that I can vaguely remember was against Fulham in 1963, the day we won the league if I remember rightly, winning 4-1.

Add Your Comments

In order to post a comment, you need to be logged in as a registered user of the site.

» Log in now

Or Sign up as a ToffeeWeb Member — it's free, takes just a few minutes and will allow you to post your comments on articles and Talking Points submissions across the site.


About these ads



© ToffeeWeb