It all started so well: Liverpool 0 Everton 4 on 19th September 1964, goals from Harvey, Morrissey, Pickering & Temple. I was just three months old.
Fast forward almost 54 (fifty four) years, and we have won just 5 more times at Anfield in the League since then:
- 21/3/70 Liverpool 0 Everton 2 (Royle, Whittle)
- 20/10/84 Liverpool 0 Everton 1 (Sharp)
- 22/2/86 Liverpool 0 Everton 2 (Ratcliffe, Lineker)
- 18/11/95 Liverpool 1 Everton 2 (Kanchelskis 2)
- 27/9/99 Liverpool 0 Everton 1 (Campbell)
There was a League Cup win in October 87 too, with a goal from Gary Stevens for the Stattos out there.
So the record is 6 League wins at the home of the lovable reds in my lifetime, none for 18 years, our longest winless run over there, none this Millennium.
When we rocked up on Sunday 10th Dec last year we were the two Sams’ lambs to the slaughter. They were full of confidence, pace and goals whilst we were recovering from open heart surgery. Somehow we nicked a draw, made all the sweeter by the toys thrown out of every red pram following the penalty award.
Tonight, it’s the FA Cup, we have to go there again and we need another backs to the wall display. With at least 8,000 Blues screaming the team on this time I refuse to give up hope, to surrender and to predict the worst. Without hope we have nothing, there is no point. Yes the hope can kill you, but the thought (1% chance) that we might just nick another draw keeps me going. Then back to the Old Lady…..The 4-4 of 1991 (followed by the second replay 1-0 win) is in my Top 3 games ever at Goodison.
Having used a decade or two’s worth of decisions our way last month, we can expect at least one red card tonight, and a softer-than-soft penalty for them too. Whatever the fortune gods or devils throw at us though, we must believe and never lose that belief. Forget the festive season horror shows.
This fixture matters to me more than any other, probably reflecting my inherent masochism, and the experiences of my formative 80s years. I will never accept inferiority to “them”, never have and I never will. Everton defines me, and defeats to them, many laced with controversy and injustice, have proved character building stuff over the years.
Whilst I won’t be there in the Anfield Road end tonight, I won’t be hiding behind the sofa either. I believe we can compete, I believe we can match them and, for so long as there is that belief in the players and the staff, anything is possible.
We are EVERTON and I would “love it” if we didn’t get beat. Just another game, my arse!