Not you again?!
By Les Roberts
Updated Friday, 30th January 2009
Just 16 days after playing the 209th Merseyside, both teams meet at Goodison to play out the 211th. Here's a look at some of the earlier battles between the two clubs.Where better to start than at the beginning...
It's October 13th 1894 and Everton are due to face their newly promoted rivals at Goodison Park.
Everton are part of the footballing elite from day one, having been one of the twelve founder members of the Football League, but Liverpool have had to work their way up from the Lancashire League since their inception in 1892.
This was probably something that the precursors to the modern day Kopite had to moan about as, despite having everything at their disposal from day one, from preofessional players to a First Division standard ground - don't they always fall on their feet - the Football League still doubted them as a viable rival to Everton.
But get promoted they did over the next two seasons, via goal average and play-offs respectively - there were no penalty shoot-outs for them to win in those days - and were ready to have the privilege of playing at Goodison.
Everton didn't approach the match any differently to any other game, keeping with their weekly training routine, but Liverpool took a week out to train at Hightown.
They needn't have bothered though as the Blues played out a straightforward 3-0 win in front of a crowd of 44,000, the biggest ever seen at a Football League game.
Everton returned to the tin mine just over a month later and Liverpool put up more of a fight this time, grinding out a 2-2 draw with the Blues in front of 30,000 fans.
Everton ended that particular season as runners-up to Sunderland and Liverpool were relegated after finishing bottom and being beaten in a play-off match against Second Division Champions, Bury.
The first FA Cup meeting between the two teams came during the 1901-02 season and it was Liverpool that eventually went through to the next round.
The initial tie at Anfield ended in a draw but Liverpool won the replay 2-0 thanks, in part, to an own goal from Everton's Walter Balmer - a tally that a fair Everton players have added to over the years!
This result must have been all the more sickening for Everton fans as the Blues had hammered them 4-0 at Goodison just three weeks earlier!
Everton were to gain swift revenge over their rivals though as the two clubs were drawn against each other in FA Cup ties twice in the next four years!
The first of these meetings came in 1904/05 as Everton were drawn away to Liverpool in round one.
The Blues forced a 1-1 draw at Anfield and then beat Liverpool 2-1 in the replay that took place just four days later at Goodison Park.
Everton then went on to beat Stoke and Southampton but were knocked out in a semi-final replay by, eventual winners, Aston Villa.
The following season Everton saw off West Brom, Chesterfield, Bradford and Sheffield Wednesday to earn a semi-final meeting with Liverpool.
The game took place at Villa Park on Saturday 31st Macrh 1906 and Everton defeated the shower thanks to a solitary goal from that season's top scorer Alex 'Sandy' Young...no, not that one!
Everton went on to meet Newcastle United, League winners (no, really!) and defeated finalists the previous year, in front of 75,609 fans at Crystal Palace and were to win their first ever FA Cup thanks to another goal from the prolific Alex 'Sandy' Young, a name that was to be etched into the clubs history all over again in the 1960's.
The two clubs then met regularly in the League up until the outbreak of World War One, when Everton finished that particular footballing time line as Champions.
But these fixtures were surrounded by the strange fact that both teams enjoyed greater success at the other team's ground.
From 1907 to 1914, Liverpool won six and drew one of the nine fixtures to be played at Goodison whilst Everton went on to win at Anfield in seven successive seasons!
However, the Blues punctuated this run of bad home form with their record win against Liverpool as they hammered them 5-0 on good Friday in 1909.
Everton then went on to repeat the record-breaking win at Anfield during the title winning season of 1914-15.
Incidentally, that remains Everton's biggest winning margin in a derby match whereas Liverpool have gone one better - well they would wouldn't they - beating the Blues 6-0 at Anfield in the 1935-36 season.
The highest aggregate score in a derby came during the 1932-33 season when the two teams played out an 11-goal thriller at Anfield.
William Ralph Dean netted two that day but even the greatest centre forward in the history of the game - fact - couldn't stop Liverpool who won the match 7-4.
The silver lining that season was that Everton went on to win the FA Cup 3-0 against Manchester City with goals from Dean, Dunn and Stein and William Ralph became the game's first ever number nine!
This was due to the fact that this was the first ever football match that saw numbers placed on the back of players shirts and Everton were given numbers 1-11 and City numbers 12-22.
Another, less well known fact about that game is that two kits were commissioned for the occasion, one white with black shorts and the other all maroon.
Everton have sporadically adopted the white and black kit as their away kit, and City the maroon kit, ever since.
And there ends the history lesson...next up, I'll try and explain Liverpool's astounding luck via a series of quadratic equations!
|30 Jan 2009|
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