Steve Zocek

A Day in the Life – Mervyn Day

A Day in the Life – Mervyn Day

Mervyn Day was a very reliable goalkeeper in the 1970’s, starting his professional career with West Ham United. He became the youngest goalkeeper to play in an FA Cup Final at the age of nineteen, when The Hammers faced Fulham at Wembley, collecting a winners’ medal after an Alan Taylor ‘double’ sealed victory. After six years at Upton Park, he joined close neighbours Leyton Orient for £100,000. He then furthered his career with Aston Villa and Leeds United, making over 200 appearances for the Elland Road club. Following loan spells at Luton Town and Sheffield United, he applied his experience…
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Any Dream Will Do: Don Donovan – (Son of my Father Part 13)

Any Dream Will Do: Don Donovan – (Son of my Father Part 13)

Don Donovan arrived in England from Cork, the second largest city in Ireland located in the south west of the country, an area which also produced Roy Keane. Don played junior football for Maymount Rovers then Dalymount Rovers, where he was spotted by an Everton representative whilst the club was on a pre-season tour. Don was invited to cross the Irish Sea in 1949, just after the war, leaving his close family and moving to new surroundings in Liverpool, only to be welcomed by a fellow countryman, Tommy Eglinton. Tommy later became the godfather of Don’s son, Terry. Other members…
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Alan and Jackie McInally – (Son of my Father Part 12)

Alan and Jackie McInally – (Son of my Father Part 12)

Alan McInally never played for Everton, but he spent pre-season with the Toffees during the days of Howard Kendall. Alan was registered a Bayern Munich player at that time and a very close friend with Mo Johnston who was at Everton back then. Alan was recovering from a knee injury eager to regain some match fitness.  The German giants authorised that Alan could play for Everton in a pre-season fixture for the Blues at Port Vale where he managed the first forty-five minutes. Following in his father’s footsteps, this is the story of Jackie McInally. Jackie started his career in…
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Scott and Archie Gemmill – Son of My Father (Part 11)

Scott and Archie Gemmill – Son of My Father (Part 11)

Scott Gemmill’s career unfolded at The City Ground, Nottingham where Brian Clough had the pleasure of managing Scott’s father Archie, at a very successful period in the club’s history. Scott, made his debut for Forest in March 1991 and remained there until he was signed by Walter Smith for Everton on transfer deadline day in March 1999. Heavy road traffic almost hijacked the transfer with time ticking down, but Scott was able to sign on the dotted line with minutes remaining. Scott was thrown in at the deep end on his debut as Everton played at Anfield in the local…
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Stuart Storer – speaking to Steve Zocek

Stuart Storer – speaking to Steve Zocek

Everton manager Howard Kendall, pictured with his two new signings from Birmingham City - Wayne Clark and Stuart Storer (Photo by Barry Farrell/Daily Mail). Stuart Storer was part of a £300,000 double swoop that brought him to Goodison Park with Wayne Clarke in March 1987. Unfortunately, Stuart failed to make a first team debut, but I took delight from talking with him about his time at Everton. Stuart continued his career with Bolton Wanderers, Exeter City and Brighton & Hove Albion, where he is fondly remembered for scoring the last ever goal at the Goldstone Ground, in the 67th minute…
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Adrian and Harrison Heath – Son of My Father (Part 10)

Adrian and Harrison Heath – Son of My Father (Part 10)

                           Adrian Heath arrived at Everton in January 1982 for a club record fee of £700,000. As a striker/attacking midfielder from the Potteries, he was signed by manager Howard Kendall who knew Adrian well from their days at the Victoria Ground, Stoke. ‘Inchy’ as he became known, made his Blues debut at home to Southampton in a 1-1 draw.  Finding it difficult to settle at first, he eventually came into his own, playing a very big part in Everton’s success. Many Evertonians class his interception from Kevin Brock at the Manor Ground, Oxford, in a January 1984 knife edge cup…
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The Likely Lads; Mark and John Higgins – Son of my Father (Part Nine)

The Likely Lads; Mark and John Higgins – Son of my Father (Part Nine)

              Mark Higgins joined Everton as an apprentice. Having excelled in his performances for the reserves, he earned a first team start a month after his eighteenth birthday in a 2-2 draw against Manchester City under the lights at Goodison Park.  Mark, a tough no-nonsense centre half, gave nothing less than 100% in an Everton jersey, but his career was blighted by injuries, which sadly led to him missing out on the success of Howard Kendall's sides of the eighties.  After over 150 appearances for the Toffees, Mark made a decision to retire from the game due to the frustration…
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Son of My Father – The Tale of Two Joes

Son of My Father – The Tale of Two Joes

Welcome to Part Five of Son of my Father. This time, I feature a football family from Glasgow: Joe McBride (Jnr) who played for Everton, and his father Joe McBride (Snr) who will be most remembered for his playing days at Celtic Park in the 1960’s. Joe senior actually had a great personal statistic by being top scorer at every club he played for. We start with Joe (Snr) who was born in 1938, a stone throws away from Rangers’ Ibrox Park. His football career began as a very young 15-year-old at Rugby Park, Kilmarnock. After 57 games and 24…
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Son of My Father – Part  6

Son of My Father – Part 6

Carry on Seargeant by Steve Zocek This latest article is quite an intriguing one, featuring Steve Seargeant and his son Christian who both played for Everton. Steve made 80 first team appearances for the Royal Blues with one goal in his Everton career, which came in a late September afternoon in 1974 with a memorable strike from 35 yards, which squirmed under the body of Leeds United goalkeeper David Harvey to open the scoring that afternoon. Everton went on to win the game 3-2 after an enthralling 90minutes. For the younger readers who were not aware of his goal, it can be seen on the YouTube channel. https://youtu.be/_SseuJApkZ0 Christian tells me that he never really…
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Son of my Father – Part 7

Son of my Father – Part 7

THE KINGDOM OF RIOCH by Steve Zocek Some of you may be wondering why I’ve given this article the title of ‘The  Kingdom of Rioch’? Well, Rioch means kingdom which comes from Irish origin. So, that’s the formalities out of the way. Bruce Rioch joined Everton in December 1976, making his Everton debut at Coventry City’s Highfield Road in a 4-2 defeat. Bruce appeared 30 times in an Everton shirt hitting the net 3 times. He had a thunderous shot, and was always favourite to take the direct free kicks when a goal seemed possible. Bruce played for a total…
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