Author Topic: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary  (Read 6186 times)

Offline WOOLTONIAN

  • The Garston Gasworks XI.....aka "Beryl".....
  • Believer
  • ******
  • Posts: 6,785
  • Brodrick ; Vice Admiral of the Reds
The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« on: September 13, 2004, 02:46:31 PM »
40 years ago this week, we played our first ever European cup tie at Anfield. To try and highlight the difference between eras, here is my account of that first night so many years ago.

You could forgive a young lad in 1964 for feelings of paranoia. Not only did his parents send him to school in short kecks, but they seemed to take delight in wanting to inflict harm. Let me explain. If someone in the street got measles or chicken-pox you were made to play with them so you caught it. So the story of 1964 begins.

Gary Hughes had caught the dreaded pox in August and so the rest of the kids in the street joined in. Being scabby in 1964 was no rarity, most kids had more spots than a polka dot dress. Measles, German measles, chicken pox and scurvy were rife or so it appeared. Three weeks after scratching everything that itched, most of us were scarred for life. No one explained that we would be marked forever if we scratched.

My Ma worked in Dunlops at the time. Watching her trying to sort her beehive out at half seven in the morning, will live with me forever. She used more laquer than a boat builder, to get that mass of hair to stand up like a sentry's busby. She passed her mornings typing away listening to the likes of Roy Orbison singing Pretty Woman. The Kinks were bashing out You Really Got Me, which was far better that the wailing Dave Berry singing The Crying Game. My favourite at the time was The Searchers, When You Walk in the Room.

In September we all trundled off to school with our new pox marked faces. The talk of the school playground was Liverpool's up and coming game with Wreck-Yuck-Vick. The amount of yocker on the school playground getting that one out was amazing. Spell it? Half of us couldn't say it.

The day ended with me scratchin me head. Was it a hidden pox spot? Was it trying to spell Reykjavic? No, to top the bleedin lot, some pillock from "Under the Bridge" had given me NITS. Cheers Leslie mate! After a good thumping on the way home from the Catholics of "Blessed John" I arrived home, bloody knees from falling down, bloody nose from a left hook, ripped shirt and scratching me 'ead. What a sight for sore eyes I must have been.

But I was my Mam's one and only and thrupence to spend in Coopers (local sweet shop) always had the desired effect on a dishevelled youth. By the time my arl fellah arrived home, I was mastering chewing a bazooka Joe while sucking a gob stopper, an art lost on today's kids. A few more scratches of my 'ead and me Dad said, have you got nits or something. A look through me short back and sides confirmed the worst.

My Mam borrowed a steel comb from a neighbour and the toilet sink told the rest of the story. I was horrified, all these ant like things running around the bowl, had been using my head as a home for the last few days. Now if there is anyone from 1964 Garston reading this, you will remember the smell of the tanning yards. It's sickly humming smell was unbelievable, but do you remember the smell of the nit shampoo? I lay odds yer pulling a face now just like I am.

So to recap ... scuffed knees, pock-marked face and stinking to high heaven. Boy did I need a pick-me-up. As always my Dad had the answer.

"How d'ya fancy going the game tomorra"

"Yahoooooooo" (cry of elation, before being a web provider) came the response.

A quick walk around Garston market the following day with me Mam also brought good tidings. My first ever pair of long kecks. I loved my Mam, I was turning from her Little Soldier into manhood with one gesture. A pair of trousers that would reach my ankles for the first time.

The return leg at Anfield may well have been a mere formality, but at six years and eleven months did anyone really understand "aggregate" scores? I know we had played them a few weeks ago, but I did not know the five goals scored would mean we started with a 5-0 lead, how could I? But my Dad did try to explain, sorry Brod yer wasted yer time. It's a bit like me trying to explain the away goals rule to me Mam.

Nevertheless that night a crowd of over 32,000 turned up to witness the historic occasion that was Liverpool's first European home tie. Unbeknownst to me, the Reykjavik squad arrived in Liverpool on the previous Saturday. Travel was a lot different then. We had an airport in Garston (although it was called Speke) but no one at my age realised you could go places from there. It was just a place where air planes landed.

They had trained at Melwood on the Sunday and on the day of the game their players and officials were treated to a civic reception at Liverpool Town Hall - another place that we knew existed, but not what went on inside. Perhaps in those days things actually happened in there, unlike today. That was where the goodwill of the hosts ended.

Out on the pitch that night, Liverpool emphatically confirmed their passage into the next round with a thoroughly professional performance. Gerry Byrne opened the scoring on 13 minutes with a shot from 35 yards, and I swear "yards" are not what they used to be. In my eyes he was on the half way line.

Ian St John, back in the side after an appendix operation (rumoured to be caused by swallowing a gob-stopper), extended the lead ten minutes later. The sporting spirit that was so evident in Iceland was repeated at Anfield - so much so that the fans on the Kop began chanting for the visitors. This confused me at the time. Looking strangely at my arl fellah would only bring laughter.

Indeed, the biggest cheer of the night was when Felixson scored a consolation goal for Reykjavik in front of the Kop after 35 minutes. The Kop went wild with excitement, I was a very confused six year old.

As a contest, the game was over by half time, it was more like a Sunday stroll in the park for Liverpool and they quickly recovered from the shock of conceding that goal by restoring their two goal lead through Roger Hunt shortly after half-time. Bobby Graham, a replacement for the injured Gordon Wallace, made it 4-1, heading home from a precision cross by A'Court, in his final first team game for the club. Two minutes later Willie Stevenson heaped further misery on the Icelander's by hammering home a fifth. An 11-1 aggregate win was completed 16 minutes from time when The Saint grabbed his second of the night.

The visitors were well beaten but their plucky performance earned them a standing ovation from all parts of the ground and the Liverpool players even joined in the applause, forming a guard of honour as Reykjavik left the field. Afterwards while me and my Dad made our way home, players and officials of both clubs enjoyed a meal together at the Adelphi Hotel in Liverpool city centre. Before returning home Reykjavik announced their wish to see the Reds go on and win the European Cup. Strange times indeed, could you imagine the likes of that happening today?

Liverpool's and my introduction to European competition could not have been more pleasant. On the way home my Dad tried once again to explain how we had won 11-1, even though I had only counted SIX. Strange rules they must have in Europe, perhaps goals counted as two if scored from outside the box, I thought. If this was playing in Europe, I made a note that I must see more games, even if I couldn't work the score out.

The Liverpool side that night included:

Lawrence, Byrne, Moran, Milne, Yeats, Stevenson, Callaghan, Hunt, St John, Graham, A'Court.

Others I remember at the time were Lawler, Chisnall, Wallace, Smith, Thompson and Strong. British to the core, no fancy foreigners in our squad.

Nowadays the Reykjavik side of Guddjonsson, Arsaelsson, B Felixson, T Jonsson, H Felixson, Kjartansson, Gudmundsson, S Jonsson, G Felixson, Schram (obviously fatherless), Gudmannsson are probably pulling their pensions but I bet the night they got cheered from the pitch at Anfield will live long in their memories as did the memory of my first ever "European Night"

If it helps you remember the time, think of these being on the television. Man from Uncle, Juke Box Jury, Fieball XL5, The Fugitive, Stingray, Beverly Hillbillies and Steptoe and Son.
Funny, but my missus of 25 years would have been a knobbly kneed, snot nosed, three year old Speke girl running around in Nappies. Not much changed there then, apart from the brand name.

Enjoy the game this week, after all, European football is a thing to be enjoyed. It's the icing on the cake, as Bill used to tell us.

© Wooltonian 2004
« Last Edit: September 13, 2004, 09:31:18 PM by Rushian »
Living descendant of Sir Thomas Brodrick, Vice Admiral of the Red in the 18th Century

Offline Bannside Red

  • Believer
  • ******
  • Posts: 1,771
  • Proud to be Red
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2004, 02:55:41 PM »
Another tremendous post Karl.

Ian St John / Gob-stopper  ;D

Offline longtimered

  • Kopite
  • *****
  • Posts: 583
  • We all Live in a Red and White Kop
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2004, 03:07:06 PM »
Enjoyed the post Karl-surprised you weren't made to watch from the boy's pen!
I remember the kop booing liverpool and cheering the icelanders at one stage of the game too.

Offline WOOLTONIAN

  • The Garston Gasworks XI.....aka "Beryl".....
  • Believer
  • ******
  • Posts: 6,785
  • Brodrick ; Vice Admiral of the Reds
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2004, 03:11:48 PM »
Enjoyed the post Karl-surprised you weren't made to watch from the boy's pen!
I remember the kop booing liverpool and cheering the icelanders at one stage of the game too.

Me too mate, very confusing for a "young gun" wasn't it.
Never did do the boys pen, always sat on a bar in the Kop with me arl fellah and my uncle Gerry Flaherty.

Living descendant of Sir Thomas Brodrick, Vice Admiral of the Red in the 18th Century

Offline Tarpaulin

  • Polish Ambassador to Liverpool
  • Believer
  • ******
  • Posts: 10,682
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2004, 07:05:58 PM »
Top Stuff Karl, :)

Offline Pooch

  • Not a fan of Michael Winner
  • RAWK Supporter
  • Believer
  • ******
  • Posts: 1,373
  • Dont keep calling me Shirley!
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2004, 09:49:28 PM »
Brilliant read that Woolly !  ;D



Every single beat is red !

Offline ALPH1217

  • Believer
  • ******
  • Posts: 5,441
  • "C'MON YOU MIGHTY REDS!"
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2004, 01:56:32 AM »
That was a real trip down memory lane. I'm curious as to whether you attended the great match against Inter in May of 1965. This could have been arguably the greatest atmosphere in the history of Anfield and I would have done anything to have been there. I was only 10 though and couldn't go!

Offline longtimered

  • Kopite
  • *****
  • Posts: 583
  • We all Live in a Red and White Kop
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2004, 07:55:10 AM »
That was a real trip down memory lane. I'm curious as to whether you attended the great match against Inter in May of 1965. This could have been arguably the greatest atmosphere in the history of Anfield and I would have done anything to have been there. I was only 10 though and couldn't go!
Before Karl replies i can tell you that game is my finest memory of Anfield,getting in the  kop about 4.30/4.45 for a 7.30 ko.Only just got in before the gates shut too.If i could relive just one game again that would be the one.

Offline Olly

  • Sees greatness from his sofa
  • Believer
  • ******
  • Posts: 3,081
  • We all live in a Red and White Kop
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #8 on: September 14, 2004, 08:37:25 AM »
As per usual Karl, cracking read.

On a side note - do you know of any books or material on Joe Fagan? Want to read more about the great man.
If you keep one eye on the past, you are blind in one eye. Yet if you forget the past, you are blind in both.

Offline WOOLTONIAN

  • The Garston Gasworks XI.....aka "Beryl".....
  • Believer
  • ******
  • Posts: 6,785
  • Brodrick ; Vice Admiral of the Reds
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #9 on: September 14, 2004, 08:40:53 AM »
That was a real trip down memory lane. I'm curious as to whether you attended the great match against Inter in May of 1965. This could have been arguably the greatest atmosphere in the history of Anfield and I would have done anything to have been there. I was only 10 though and couldn't go!

Chants from the night

Attack, attack, attack attack attack

Go back to Italy, Go back to Italy

If we're still in Europe on the 4th May, I will write that story, with pleasure.

Living descendant of Sir Thomas Brodrick, Vice Admiral of the Red in the 18th Century

Offline Andy-oh-six

  • Believer
  • ******
  • Posts: 2,873
  • Mr Susan in 'the world of mirrors'...
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #10 on: September 14, 2004, 12:25:12 PM »
Great memories. A bit before my time though ;)

European nights are still (even in this age) special and Anfield is the home of such experiences of excitement, passion and if you're still in short trousers, bemusment!
Internet terrorist

Offline speker

  • Main Stander
  • ***
  • Posts: 232
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #11 on: September 14, 2004, 06:47:35 PM »
Quote
Now if there is anyone from 1964 Garston reading this, you will remember the smell of the tanning yards. It's sickly humming smell was unbelievable, but do you remember the smell of the nit shampoo? I lay odds yer pulling a face now just like I am.
 

And never forget the omni-present pong eminating from the gasworks. Ahhh the memories all come flooding back. Garston in the sixties, so long ago now , it was far from being paradise   but I wouldn't have missed it for the world  :)

Offline nige

  • RAWK Poet Laureate
  • Believer
  • ******
  • Posts: 5,051
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #12 on: September 14, 2004, 07:07:53 PM »
great read as ever Woolly.
I'd heard that Reykjavik were trying to arrange something for pre-season v. LFC to commemorate 40years, and I was so disappointed when nothing came of it that I popped over to Iceland anyway this summer (like you do *) and took the Shankly flag to the CL qualifier  between KR Reykjavik v. shelbourne. Their club secretary was really helpful & Mr. shankly took pride of place under the scoreboard while I got a free seat in the Director's Box.

Anyway the next day I was standing in the park watching an Icelandic  second division game through some railings (the way you do) when a bloke walking his dog stopped and asked me the score. We got talking and I told him about why I'd come to the match the day  before .... and the first thing he said was ..
"ah, Liverpool ! Peter Thompson ! I was at that match .....Peter Thompson destroyed us. we didn't see foreign teams in those days and he was something like we had never seen before...."

* In fact I was going there anyway for a walking holiday !  :)
« Last Edit: September 14, 2004, 07:44:17 PM by nige »

Offline Redordead

  • Believer
  • ******
  • Posts: 1,461
  • Rarely visits North Korea these days
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #13 on: September 14, 2004, 11:43:22 PM »
Another cracking post, I always enjoy reading them, any plans for a book a-la Evo?

Houses smell of mushy peas, cat piss, dope and (in the more extreme cases in West Yorks) ammunition.  Wives look like scarred pitbull terriers.  Children are feral, resembling hungry monkeys.  Bloke wears vests a lot.  Tracksuit bottoms.  Slippers.  Few tattoos.  Wishes he'd joined the army, pretends he was a Para.  Spends too much time wanking...

Offline Dickie Sam Cratchet

  • RAWK Supporter
  • Kopite
  • ******
  • Posts: 551
  • A boy from the Mersey
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #14 on: September 15, 2004, 09:57:50 AM »
Karl,

I hope you dont mind if I post these threads from the Liverpool section here?

Posted by Zappa.

The great adventure had begun with the first leg in Iceland which had taken place nearly a month earlier. (Oddly tucked in between the Charity Shield draw at Anfield with West Ham (The game in which Bobby Moore broke up and coming star striker Alfie Arrowsmith’s leg and virtually ended his career; freak accident) and the start of the league season)

A mere 10,000 people turned out to watch the Reds crush the Icelandic team 5-0.

Very few LFC fans saw the Reykjavik away match; very few would have been able to afford the then difficult trip. European away’s were the stuff of dreams for most.

So what about the home game?

Monday September 14 1964 7-30pm

Team
Tommy Lawrence, Gerry Byrne, Ronnie Moran, Gordon Milne, Ron Yeats, Willie Stevenson, Ian Callaghan, Roger Hunt, Ian St John, Bobby Graham, Alan A’Court

Bobby Graham replaced an injured Gordon Wallace, who had up to this point been an ever-present in the early season team.

An odd fact about these games at the start of the 64-65 season concerns Gordon Wallace, for a short time, he was the man. He started the season with a bang, one in the Charity Shield, two against Reykjavik; two more against Arsenal in a 3-2 opening day win and then his career virtually ended, unable to compete with the likes of Bobby Graham and Geoff Strong, he hung around until 1967 but never got back into the side after 1965.

In those days, Anfield could accommodate around 55,000.

The job done in the first round, the fair weather fans stayed away in their droves [Funny enough, they would re-emerge when there were tickets to be had.. grrrr, nothing changes}, only 32,597 could be bothered turning out for this bit of history.
As the average age of the people on the Kop would be around 30, and this was 40 years ago, most of the faithful who turned out that night would be 70+ years of age now and some of course are no longer with us.

I was one of them aged 15, with my mates on the Kop.

We knew that the Icelandic side were part-timers, we also knew that they had a few Icelandic international players; but these were the days when for England to beat the likes of Iceland by anything less than 5-0 would have been seen as a failure

The teams came out to the normal rapturous applause, and the reds set about business.

Gerry Byrne scored in the 13th minute with a screamer of a shot into the Anfield Road goal from about 30 yards out and we were on our way.

Lesser teams would have lay down and surrendered, Reykjavik didn’t; they battled on. Gamely and fairly they chased shadows and we started to feel sorry for them.

These players were honest and trying hard to compete but it was almost “Boys versus Men” stuff.

On 23 minutes Ian St John scored a second with his right foot.

And in one of those magic Kop moments that happened spontaneously, we pretended to turn on our own team. We cheered everything the plucky Reykjavik players did, every touch of the ball.

And then we started booing the reds. Ron Yeats in particular kept turning around to the Kop with a huge bemused smile on his face. Must’ve been strange for him to be on the end of the Kop’s “anger”.

The minnows tried to respond to this unexpected support, and they lifted their game a little.

In the 35th minute the minnows strung together a couple of neat quick moves and Gunnar Felixson scored a good goal for the Icelanders in the Kop-end.

A huge cheer 2-1 went up from the Kop; the part-timers might be out but they were going out heads held high and making their presence felt.

After the break, it all went a bit pear shaped, “Our” (For we had adopted them by now) part-timers began to tire; Sir Roger scored on 50 minutes to give the score line a bit more respectability for the lucky reds.

Bobby Graham headed the fourth in the 65th minute and then two minutes later one of my all time favourites Willie Stevenson grabbed the fifth goal.

St John completed the rout in the 75th minute. 6-1 on the night, 11-1 on aggregate.

And the Liverpool team formed a guard of honour and clapped the plucky part-timers off the field.

We cheered and clapped them all, our adopted part-timers, our formidable reds, then ran out into the night dreaming about scoring goals for the reds as we conquered Europe. I doubt that any of us could have named much more than perhaps 12 foreign teams back then.

The great European adventure had now really begun because we’d seen it and it had begun well.

Exhilarated we ran all the way down to Hawthorn Road Kirkdale to jump the 57A bus back to Netherton (School in the morning)
=================

What a season that was; so many highs and lows


The Beatles and the Stones traded number 1 hits all year.. Can’t buy me love- It’s all over now- A Hard days night- Little Red Rooster- I feel fine.
At the time of the Reykjavik match the Kinks with You Really got me was #1

We entered the year as champions,

We got slaughtered 4-0 by Everton with them fielding I think 7 “reserves”; unknown kids like Kendal and Harvey who became Toffees legends in the years that followed.

We challenged for a bit but faltered and finished 7th

Shankly’s heroes found three new faces becoming permanent members of the first team; three all-time greats, and what would they cost today?
Tommy Smith, debut in 1963 but established himself this year;
The “Ghost” Chris Lawler probably LFC’s all-time highest scorer as a full-back and as far as I remember he never ever took a penalty;
And the first “utility” player I ever remember, Geoff Strong who should have been knighted for his headed goal against Celtic in the following years Cup Winners Cup Semi)


The Liver Birds flew, and at last we won the FA Cup. We left the year as FA Cup winners and because this was our very first one, it was ample compensation for losing our league title. No it was worth much more than the league title to us!

At the end, we should have made it into the European Cup final at the first attempt losing in very controversial circumstances in the semis against Inter in Milan…but that as they say is another tale.

© VWA 2004-08-21

http://www.redandwhitekop.com/forum/index.php/topic,37663.0.html



Offline Dickie Sam Cratchet

  • RAWK Supporter
  • Kopite
  • ******
  • Posts: 551
  • A boy from the Mersey
Re: The "Ruby Red" Anniversary
« Reply #15 on: September 15, 2004, 10:00:08 AM »
One I copied from LFC.TV.From LFC.TV.

http://www.liverpoolfc.tv/news/drilldown/N145703040817-0956.htm

On Monday August 17, 1964, Liverpool played their first-ever game in European competition. It was in Iceland against the part-timers of KR Reykjavik and Shankly's Reds strolled to a comfortable 5-0 success.

Bright sunshine and bitterly cold temperatures greeted the Reds party when they arrived in Iceland but they quickly adapted and set about their task in a typically professional manner.

The Icelandic champions set their stall out to defend from the start in the hope of keeping the score respectable but within three minutes their best-laid plans backfired on them. Roger Hunt crossed from the right and Gordon Wallace rifled home to open the scoring.

Liverpool were far superior in all departments and their part-time hosts were totally outclassed. Peter Thompson was the main protagonist, weaving his way through the Reykjavik defence like a hot knife through butter.

Tommy Lawrence in the Reds goal was a mere spectator but it took until a minute after the restart before Liverpool increased their advantage. Wallace had a shot blocked and Roger Hunt was on hand to convert the rebound.

In the 52nd minute the hosts forced their first corner of the match but it was only a brief respite from the Liverpool onslaught. Four minutes later a Callaghan centre was pushed out by the Reykjavik keeper, the ball fell straight to Phil Chisnall and he found the back of the net to make it 3-0.

Wallace scored his fourth goal in two games with a header on 63 minutes and two minutes from time Hunt completed the rout. Afterwards the Reykjavik players were unanimous in their praise of the Reds, with many rating them side to ever visit Iceland.

To commemorate this special anniversary in the club's history, Liverpoolfc.tv catch up with three key payers from that day to reminisce...

Ron Yeats, Roger Hunt & Gordon Wallace

Ron Yeats (LFC captain): Most of us didnt even know where Reykjavik was. We flew from Manchester to London, then from London to Prestwick in Scotland and finally caught a flight from there to Iceland.

Roger Hunt (two goal marksman): These days you'd get a chartered plane, but I'll always remember we had to fly from Glasgow and then wait in Glasgow for a few hours for the flight to Reykjavik. I remember Shankly saying that we'd organise a trip to Butlins to save the boredom to kill a few hours. We get to Butlins and the coach driver pulls up and Shankly gets to the front of the bus and says to the bloke, "We're Liverpool Football Club and we're on our way to Europe, we've qualified for the European Cup." The bloke said, "Well this isn't the way to there!"

Gordon Wallace (scorer of LFC's opening goal): It really was a trip into the unknown and everything was new to us. On the flight over there I remember looking out of the place at a volcano in the sea and the pilot telling us all about it.

Yeats: They were very nice people, I remember that. They were only part-timers and to be honest it was an easy game for us.

Wallace: I remember Roger Hunt going to the by-line and squaring it back to me. I was only six-yards out and to be honest I miss-hit it. I shouldn't really say that but it's the truth. The ball went in between the goalkeeper and the near post.

Hunt: It was an eventful trip, we won 5-0 and it was an experience to score there.

Wallace: Obviously they were only amateurs and we were expected to win but the Icelandic people were lovely people. It was, and still is, a beautiful country. I enjoyed the trip so much I went back there on holiday years later. In 1964 we were only there to play the match so we didn't get the chance to see it all so I made a promise to myself at the time that one day I would return and I did.

Yeats: I must admit that we really enjoyed it and I think the Liverpool supporters enjoyed it. It was something different. They knew the first division players, they knew the international players from England, Ireland and Scotland, but they didn't know Europe and it was a smashing experience. I think those early experiences we had in Europe took the club further on that when they won the European Cup.