SON OF MY FATHER – (Part One) -John Armfield by Steve Zocek

Jimmy Armfield playing for Blackpool during the 1967-68 season. Photograph: Colorsport/Rex/Shutterstock Anything Everton related always fascinates me. My next two article is about a famous footballers whose sonat spells/trials at Everton. This first one is of John Armfield the son of Blackpool legend Jimmy; Jimmy Armfield with sons Duncan and John at Bloomfield Road John tells his story how he teamed up with Everton. I got involved with Everton season 1987/88 because of John King who at the time was manager of Runcorn FC, a mad Evertonian and friendly with some of the coaching staff at Everton, in particular Mick Lyons. I had been playing in the Conference for Runcorn as a goalkeeper and unfortunately in December, I got a hematoma in my leg which kept me side-lined for 3 months. There was no reserve football for me and I started to play on a Saturday morning at Everton for the A team filling in to improve my fitness really. I ended up playing about...
Read More

Tommy Eglington – The Flying Winger of the Fifties – Rob Sawyer

Tommy Eglington, the Irish international left-winger, gave unstinting service to the Blues’ cause during some of the club’s darkest days. He is forever associated with his teammate and great friend, Peter Farrell, who crossed the Irish Sea with him in 1946.  Tommy was born in Donnycarney, a Northside suburb of Dublin on 15th January 1923. He was one of seven siblings born to Christopher (a butcher by trade) and Margaret. As was the norm, Gaelic Football was played in school, so Tommy would only get to indulge his passion for the ‘British game’ in the fields near his home after lessons finished. His early footballing experience was with Grace Park - a Sunday team he formed with friends (it disbanded when the war broke out). On a Grave Park tour of the Midlands he was offered a trial with West Bromwich Albion but he turned it down - feeling that he was too young to leave home. He’d go on to...
Read More
FRED BARBER – A CUT ABOVE – Steve Zocek

FRED BARBER – A CUT ABOVE – Steve Zocek

Fred Barber was signed by Everton as back up cover for Neville Southall in April 1986 for £50,000 from Darlington. During a brief stay, he was never required to play a first team game and was sold to Walsall, with Howard Kendall doubling his money.  Fred tells me how the move to Everton happened and quite a story it is. It was a Wednesday night, 26 March 1986, and I was watching the highlights on TV, of Republic of Ireland vs Wales from Lansdowne Road, Dublin. Neville Southall the Everton and Wales ‘keeper had torn his ankle ligaments,which would keep him side-lined for a period of time.  Everton of course had Bobby Mimms as their number two, but needed another keeper just in case Bobby got injured orsuspended.  At the time I was at Darlington, and our game the previous night against Mansfield Town had been postponed due to the bad weather and re-scheduled for the following night. Thatmorning the manager, Cyril Knowles phoned and I was expecting him to say the game was off again. However, I was told that Everton had come in for me and asked to get down there ASAP for talks. My girlfriend at...
Read More
TOMMY WHEELDON-THE THIRD NEW BOY - Steve Zocek

TOMMY WHEELDON-THE THIRD NEW BOY - Steve Zocek

On Tuesday 7th December 1976,Everton manager Billy Bingham made a triple swoop by signing Duncan McKenzie from Anderlecht, Bruce Rioch from Derby County and Tommy Wheeldon.  Tommy who? You know, Tommy Wheeldon from St Helens Town?  Never heard of him? You have now. Liverpool schoolboys in cologne I was intrigued to find the truth about Tommy, an Evertonian from birth, who was expected to reach better things in football. Tommy takes up this wonderful story.  I played for England Under 18’s and attracted interest from both Everton and West Ham United and a few more clubs. John Lyall the manager of West Ham made contact with me, and I also received a letter from Ron Greenwood the former manager of West Ham, inviting me to play for the Hammers first team against Morecambe. I thought I’d misheard when he said first team, but confirmation proved that I wasn’t imagining things. West Ham were staying in the north-west for the game and I joined them for the week in Morecambe in April 1976 and played in midfield with Trevor Brooking, Graham Paddon andBilly Bonds. We won 9-1 with me stepping in for Pat Holland.  Trial...
Read More
A Day of Celebration and Commemoration at The Winslow

A Day of Celebration and Commemoration at The Winslow

Number 31 Goodison Road is an address with 134 years of rich history – 128 of them indelibly linked to the football club across the road. When The Winslow Hotel called first orders in 1886 there was a field opposite called Mere Green. In 1892 it became the new home of Everton FC. Over the decades countless Toffees supporters and no few players (in the days when many lived, literally, around the corner form Goodison Park) have passed through the doors.  On Saturday 14th March this year, the Everton FC Heritage Society teamed up with the current licensee, Dave Bond, to celebrate with the Borthwick, Robinson and Greenhalgh families’ connections to the football club and pub. After some informative speeches, specially-commissioned blue plaques were unveiled on the exterior of the pub to mark Jack Borthwick and Norman Greenhalgh’s service as Everton players and Winslow landlords. Private Jack Borthwick Leith-born Borthwick moved from Hibernian to Everton in 1908 as cover for the venerable Jack...
Read More
ONE GOAL AT A TIME BOB LATCHFORD – Steve Zocek

ONE GOAL AT A TIME BOB LATCHFORD – Steve Zocek

Recollections of Bobs 30 Goal record by his Colleagues       On 29 April 1978, Everton recorded a memorable 6-0 victory over Chelsea in front of 39,500 people. Watching from the Main Stand that afternoon was the great Dixie Dean. Bob Latchford was adored by his fans, who were convinced that he walked on water and anxiously wanted the two goals required to achieve thirty goals for the season. The Daily Express had offered a generous prize of £10,000 for this milestone.I recently made contact with most of the players that played for Everton that day, to ask for their story of that great afternoon. Sadly, two of the team, Mick Buckley and Andy King have passed away. I also spoke with Gordon Lee and the club physio Jim McGregor.  Martin Dobson I didn’t know this at the time, but Bob was confident that he was going to score the two goals required to reach the tally of 30 for that season. He got to 28 with three games remaining. We drew away at Middlesbrough 0-0 and lost 3-1 at the Hawthorns (West Brom) in...
Read More
The Andrew Watson Story by Tony Onslow

The Andrew Watson Story by Tony Onslow

Now accepted as the world’s first black football player, Guyana-born Andrew Watson was to have a career that would bind him tightly to both Glasgow and Liverpool. He would also make a guest appearance in the colours of Everton. His father, Peter Miller Watson, was born on 16 June 1805, in the Orkney Islands and was the fourth son of James Watson who acted as factor for a Scottish nobleman. His mother was Scottish, neé Christina Robertson, whose family were sugar plantation owners in the colony of British Guyana. When Peter was just 3 years old his father died and his mother was married for a second time to Orkney-born Dr Thomas Traill who had a practice in Liverpool. She moved to the Mersey seaport with her sons and gave birth to another six children. Peter later trained to be a lawyer in London before joining his elder brothers in British Guyana where he administered legal affairs at the family sugar plantation....
Read More
The Allan Maxwell Story. By Tony Onslow

The Allan Maxwell Story. By Tony Onslow

When Allan Maxwell decided to leave his native Scotland to play professional football, he had no idea that, eventually, he was involved in one of the most peculiar transfers that ever happened in Victorian England. He had been born, 2-4-1869 in Lanarkshire town of Dalziel, now part of Motherwell, where his Father worked as a Coal Miner. The 1871 census finds the family have moved to 30 Sunnyside Rows in Cambuslang where young Allan is confirmed as being 2 years old. He is listed as a Scholar on the 1881 census which reveals that the Maxwell family have now moved to the town of Hamilton. They were living at 5 Windsor Street when Allan Maxwell left school and joined his Father working at the Mine. It is around this time that he started playing football for Cambuslang on their home at Whitefield Park and was at the club when they became founder members of the Scottish League in 1890.They finished in fourth place but, at the end of the season, Allan Maxwell decided his interests would be best served by moving to Scottish League outfit, 3rd Lanark in Glasgow. He had not long been with his new club when Everton came in with...
Read More
Everton FC’s 1909 pre-season tour of South America, Edwardian style – David Prentice

Everton FC’s 1909 pre-season tour of South America, Edwardian style – David Prentice

Edwardian style Amazing story of Everton's pioneering 1909 tour of South America A contemporary cigarette card of Bert Freeman, the star of Everton's 1909 tour of South America. In the summer months of 1909 a 13-strong Everton FC playing staff led by two directors and a trainer, together with travelling companions Tottenham Hotspur, travelled 14,000 miles and spent more than six weeks at sea, visiting Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina – “to introduce and develop first class football.” Their story is a fascinating one – and thanks to the diligence of director E. Bainbridge and an exhaustive tour diary he produced for the Echo, the story of the ground-breaking tour can be retold a century later. So settle down with a cup of finest Brazilian and a corned beef sandwich, and enjoy the exploits of the Evertonian adventurers. Like many great Evertonian trips, the story began at Lime Street station. The Blues boarded a steam train to London Euston on Thursday...
Read More

The Birth of Sponsorship -KEN ROGERS

I was asked what appeared to be a fairly straightforward Everton FC quiz question recently but failed miserably with my answer. To be fair, it was a Richarlison-style curved ball, linked with the first known commercial sponsors of a Goodison Park fixture. I thought I started well by suggesting Hafnia and NEC but I wasn’t even close. Linked with today’s visitors I was told that the answer had a Manchester connection and links to lifeboats, a beefy end-product and an historical light spectacular. In the end I turned to a classic source of information for the answer by viewing the comprehensive Everton Collection website. A quick search turned up a photograph of one of the gold winner’s medals handed out that day. The date was 1893 when it was ‘cheers!’ to . . . Bovril, our first match sponsors. This steaming bovine-based beverage was first introduced in 1884, four years before we became one of the founder members of the Football League....
Read More

Only Once a Blue (10) Roger Ord. – Tony Onslow

Courtesy of Patrick Brennan Born April 1874 in the Northumberland Coal Mining community of Cramlington, Roger Ord was the second son of Thomas and his Wife, Ann. He was working as a Coal Miner when he began his football career keeping goal for his local side Shankhouse who played their league matches in the Northern Alliance. Known as the Black Watch This club entered the FA Cup in 1892 and surprised all concerned by reaching the first round proper but were beaten, 4-0, by Notts County at Trent Bridge. The local scout persuaded Ord to sign for Everton following his appearance in the Northumberland Senior Cup final at St James Park, Newcastle. The terms, entered in the club minute book, are as follows… Resolved. We offer Ord 10/- per week, employment, without guarantee open to further arrangements. These arrangements must have been disappointing to the Young Northumbrian who, nevertheless, was present at Goodison Park in time for the new Football League campaign....
Read More