The Sunday Sermon ; Johnny Morrissey

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  1. For those in Helmand Province , Afghanistan generally , or otherwise Serving Their Country and away from their loved ones .Stay SAFE , Peoples … THAT is a Goddamn’ ORDER …!!!

    For My Mother , My World , L.C.A.Barb …

    May the Good Lord be with you all .

    Welcome , everyone to our little corner of the Sabbath .

  2. The subject of today’s lesson is a Bona-Fide Everton Legend . No doubt there . He played during a time when Goodison was to see some of her brightest ever stars . Yet , he held his own with all of them , an’ indeed is often mentioned in despatches in Autobiographies and the likes . Furthermore , whilst a medal winner with ourselves , he was the original – Post War Inter-Meseyside Club Transfer , from them to us . A Big Deal , as it turned out . Though , perhaps his Legend as it were , was about him being , NAILS . So hard , was this Cat , that they reckon he had his own page in Jack Charlton’s , Little Black Book .

    Ladies and Gentlemen of The Congregation , may I introduce Johnny Morrissey .

    Born in Liverpool on April 18 , 1940 . Johnny was something of a Schoolboy Prodigy . Indeed , My Granddad Jack used of tell of days where if Johnny Morrissey was playing for Liverpool Boys – which of course he did , there would be 3/4000 on Mere Lane Fields – Later the Dixie Dean fields , for locals . This was a common phenomenon with Moggsy in the team , but a wholly uncommon one at any other time . It was a short step then , to him being signed up by a Professional Club , and he chose , he must have been ill that day , the RS , and signed for them in June 1957 . During 5 years at Grey Skull , he was to play 36 games and scored 6 goals . At the time they were just , Pre , their , In League With Lucifer , Contract and were struggling/ers . They had a few players , Liddell , even our own Canon-Ball kid but that was it , but they also had a lad called , Alan A’Court – a Star for them , whom happened to play in young Johnny’s position of Left Winger . Thus , frustration began to set in . Everton Manager Harry Catterick had seen the kid’s potential , and made an offer of �10,000 which was accepted by the RS Board . However , Bill Shankley , the Bealzebubs Boss , was unaware of the move and WAS NOT PLEASED . Indeed , informed his Board that should they ever pull a similar stunt , then he would be their Ex- Manager . No matter . God had entered young Moggsy’s life as he was taken to The Promise Land in Summer 1962 .

    At the time , Catterick was busy building his , First Great Side . Bingham , Royston Vernon , Gordon West , the Golden Vision had been bought the year before . Young Johnny made the First Team relatively quickly . Indeed , Shank’s mood would not have improved as Johnny scored his first Everton Goal in the Goodison Derby – a 2-2 draw in front of 72,644 Good Souls , in the first Derby in 11 seasons . Life can be SWEEEEET sometimes… The week after , he gets his first Everton Hat-Trick at home to West Bromwich Albion , as we win 4-2 . Now he’s off and running . Apart from our usual European Blip – this time defeat in the Inter-City Fairs Cup away at Dunfermline . Yes , that’s Dunfermline . They followed up though , with a 5-0 home win against Blackpool and a , 4-3 vicory at the City Ground , Nottingham . In two of the next 3 home games we scored three times . There was a reason that this side were called The Entertainers . Moggsy meanwhile grabbed his first Everton goal since his 3 , scoring in a home defeat of Ipswich Town in October , and again , as we spank Swindon Town 5-1 at their place in the F.A. Cup Third Round .

    Remember , this was the Season of , The Big Freeeeeze , with many , many games being postponed over a period of about 10 weeks . Like , ridiculous amounts . Fortunately , us being , Billy Big Pockets at this time , meant we enjoyed the benefits of Under-Soil Heating – alas , it is still in use / none use , today and thus hardly missed a , Home-Beat . This allowed us to make our first legitimate push at the Title since Lawton was our Centre-Forward . Admittedly , we lost our way a tad in February – we only played 2 games all month ; then March , losing 3 League games and were knocked out of the Cup at West Ham , as we are forced to play 6 times in 21 days as the backlog began to kick-in . April was even worse as regards fixture congestion . We play 8 League games in the Calendar Month , but thankfully had replaced losses with draws , as we manage to win 5 of the games , as we did our three remaing matches in May , as Catterick’s side does what Mr. Moores had ordered and won the League Chamipionship – having never been out of the top 3 and unbeaten at The Old Lady ; scoring 81 goals in the process , and cliching the Title by 6 points and a far superior goal average should it have been required . Johnny Morrissey made 28 Domestic starts and 5 other games , bagging 8 goals . He played more games than both Bingham and Scott – Internationals , and Footballers of some repute , both , as he enjoyed his first season in Paradise to the sight of Silverware in the Goodison Road Stand . Catterick even smiled for a couple of seconds they reckon . They thought John Moores did too , but it turned out to be a touch of colic . No matter . Young Moggsy had obviously made the right decision . One thing here . I think I should highlight the pervading atmosphere , during this period of , Anyone But Everton , believe it or not . It sprang from our Mersey Millionaires tag , and was not dissimilar to that of contemporary Manchester City . In fairness like , we skimmed teams like Blackburn and Blackpool of their best players – and others btw , on a fairly regular basis . Oh , and I made my entrance into the world on the last day of July this year . You Lucky Peoples .

    The following 3 Seasons as an Evertonian for Johnny Morrissey were not as bright as the first . He would indeed struggle with the challenge of , with Bingham having gone , Chico Scott and Denis Stevens in nailing the wide positions down . The Team itself continued to blossom . Kay making more of an impact this year , and Vernon and Young were STILL awesome . As was typical at the time , what with other sides being fairly decent too , we beat Man’ United in the Charity Shield , 4-0 at Goodison , though lose to them 1-5 two games into the new Campaign . Though , whereas the previous season they had gotten off to a decent start , this term , it would take until 21 September to gain our 4th victory . In the meantime we had already been eliminated out of the European Cup by the eventual winners , Internazionale Di Milano . The week after , we go down 1-2 at Grey Skull , before 4 consecutive wins brings us back into contention . We defeated the Glasgow Huns over 2 legs – 4-2 in the British Championship , an Un-Official Anglo-Scots Cup game . We then get whammed at Highbury 0-6 – sound familiar …???
    3 days later though , we give United a Boxing Day Hiding as we settled the score for August , with a 4-0 win .

    This Season also saw the Infamous , Everton-Leeds encounter . We lost 0-1 , but that weren’t the story . At the time , Revie’s Yorkshire Whites were not only a formidable Football outfit , they were First Division , in looking after themselves too . This particular game , we were Champions , of course , but also , Bobby Collins , our Ex-Pocket Battleship an’ , All-Round Midfield Guv’nor had been sold to Leeds , utterly illogically . Sandy Brown , a recent signing from Partick Thistle – and no , Shrinking Violet , himself ; was sent off in the opening minutes – he was enraged that Giles had , ” Left stud marks on my chest ..” , and duly , Left Hooked , the Irishman . 4 minutes had been played . Derek Temple , then one of the players keeping Moggsy from the First Team was carried off . The Echo noted that , “… In the second half , there was a remarkable period of 5 minutes where a foul was not commited . So bad did this game get , that the Referee took the Players from the field for a , ” Cooling off Period …” Now , THAT is something you don’t hear every week . Indeed it was unprecedented in English Professional Football . The Thunderer ; The Times of London , noted , ” ..Goodison Park has already claimed an unwanted reputation for Vandalism . Leeds United have earned Black Marks for ill-temper on the field . The marriage of these two dangerous elements sparked off the explosion ,…” December of this Campaign also saw Everton’s Goalie , Andy Rankin break a bone in his hand , but as we had no Sub’ , Sandy Brown went in goal an’ The Keeper played Right Wing as we re-shuffled for the last 20 mins or so in a 0-0 at Wolves .
    Johnny himself , while coming in for Temple whilst he was incapacitated, had slipped down the Pecking Order , indeed becoming a Squad Player for nearly 3 Seasons . The midfield with Kay , Gabriel , Chico and Bobby Collins’ replacement , Dennis Stevens – Duncan Edwards’ Cousin , btw , were mostly the First Choice , but Temple and Brian Harris the immediate replacements . The side go on to finish 3rd , 5 points of the top and behind the 2 North West Rouge Mufukas . Thus , with Fred Pickering arriving from Blackburn Rovers and scoring freely , Europe was again secured , but not like the year before , unfortunately . Johnny Morrisssey played only 7 League games and scored his only goal in the 3-2 home win over Burnley in January . As far as Young J was concerned , the Campaign couldn’t end quick enough .

    The First Division Season of 1964/65 dawned upon Goodison Park with Johnny Morrissey about to begin his 3rd Campaign as an Evertonian . This would be make or break . We began with an away win at The Victoria Ground , Stoke then 2 home victories , the second , 4-1 versus Spurs as Big Fred grabbed an Everton Hat-Trick . However , two losses and 3 draws followed , but Moggsy at least was back in Catterick’s First Team plans . The week after the latest of these losses – Man’ United , 1-2 , we go to Grey Skull ,.. Now , in modern-day parlance , this day was to be our Finest Hour at the Vermin . We utterly destroy them , 4-0 , Colin Harvey getting the first , Moggsy himself , that must have been sweeeeeet , the second and Pickering and Temple one each . Those whom were present , one L.C.A.Big-Daddy a case in point , never stopped buzzing about it for tiiiiiiiiimmmmmme … Vallagrens were ultimately despatched in Europe , 9-4 . However , when we weren’t winning we were drawing . Indeed our first defeat since Game #4 of the Season came against Blackburn Rovers on October 24 . This was ante-ceded by 3 defeats from 4 , as The Catt’ tinkered . Another 2 losses . 1-5 , at Chelsea and 0-4 , at Roker Park , Sunderland .
    It was from here on though that they decided to , ” Make a shape …” as Me Da’ would’ve said . The Roker game was November 28 . We would not lose again until March 20 as Leeds , Put Us to the Sword , at Elland Road , 1-4 . The STORY , as far as Evertonans went , during this Campaign was Big Fred Pickering . In 20 games , from Leicester City on November 21 , Big Fred scored in 15 of them , scoring 17 goals . Awesome record . Honest to God , Awesome . We complete a Derby Double over the Lucifers , as Johnny Morrissey nets yet another Derby Goal and Derek Temple the second in a 2-1 win . We close the Fixtures with 3 wins , one draw from our last 4 games , and optimism still remained , despite the absence of Silverware . The side whilst not having generally stayed in the race for the Title , eventually finished fourth , but miles behind in points – 12 . John Morrissey played 36 games in all Competitions , scoring 6 goals .

    1965/66 was , I could imagine , the optimum time to be a Scouser , and specifically a Blue . Our City was the World’s Focus , our Music its Lullaby , and our Football ,… With both , Dwight D. Eisenhower’s Bealzebubs and our own very fine side , albeit stripped of Collins and Kay , it was a melting pot of just pyaaar ACENESS . They had .. whomever they had . WE had , The Golden Vision , The Angel Gabriel , The Last of the Corinthians , et al . Just check the attendance figures if you question the voracity of this statement . I kid you not . If I were to ask you , from the 92 League Clubs at the time , whom you thought were our opening day opponents ..??? Then I also ask you how far up that list were Northampton Town ,..??? Bizarre . Anyway , of course , we despatch them , 5-2 . We then meet Sheff’ Wednesday twice in 6 days , winning and losing . The shape of things – rather immediately , to come this year ; was from losing to West Bromich at The Old Lady on Sept 7 , we would play 10 games , winning only three . However , the Nadir , indeed until I myself witnessed the next one , was a Goodison Derby Debacle Par Excellence , as the RS came and webbed us 0-5 . Least said upon this the better . It would go , lose , draw , win , draw , lose …etc . It never really got started domestically . Johnny Morrissey too , struggled to hold down a first team place , but scored his first League goal in an away defeat , 1-2 at Filbert Street , Leicester ..

    The New Year saw Sunderland defeated at L4,4EL in the F.A. Cup Third Round . Even this early , though with the side mid-table , the Cup represented our only realistic chance at a Trophy , with the Lucifers were top of the table. The 4th Round we draw Bedford , yes , that’s Bedford at home as they were beaten 3 . Round 5 , Coventry , again at home . Again 3 nil . Between Sunderland in the Cup , to the Grey Skull Derby we played 10 games . We drew 1 , with Burnley , as Labby grabbed a rare goal , and won 8 . They were finally getting into gear but had left it far too late in the Championship . Fortunately we were able to recover something from the Wreckage. The RS Derby finished nil’s each . Indeed we draw 3 of our next 4 games by the same score , then lose 2 from three – one a visit to Leeds were The Catt’ fielded a full reserve side . They’d Eat Him for that today , Pre-facing Busby’s Manchester United at Bolton Wanderers in the F.A. Cup Semi Final . We , thankfully triumph 1-0 with Colin Harvey scoring the only goal of the game , and with us becoming the first team in years to reach the Cup Final without conceding a goal . Johnny Morrissey was of course devastated to have made neither the Semi Final Team , nor that of the Showpiece , but not as gutted as Fred Pickering . Big Fred had played in the Manchester United game , but – and in a microcosm of the Greaves / Hurst scenario some 2 months later ; was sensationally dropped for Wembley , to be replaced by Mike Trebilcock , whom to that point had been predominantly a reserve . No matter . Sheffield Wednesday were the Opposition , no big deal for them as they set another record by being drawn away from Hillsborough in each round of the competition . The Nightmare of Nightmares starts as they take a 1-0 Half-Time lead and then add to it shortly after . Thankfully , Trebilcock’s Destiny was to centre around this very afternoon as , miraculously , he scores two to level the tie . Now we are on top , and as Derek Temple breaks from the half way line , burning off their defenders and is faced with England Squad Goalie , Springett . He doesn’t even blink and certainly doesn’t break stride as he slams it past the Yorkie Stopper and into Everton Legend . Eddie Cavanagh , getting Rugby Tackled by one of The Met’s Finest – with Labby and Westy intervening on his behalf , btw , also makes the Annals . A Wembley Comeback the equal of any Wembley Comebacks before or since . An’ Evertonians let the World know ! I used to have pictures , framed ones on me wall as a kid . They were signed but Black And White so I gave them to one of Me Ma’s Christmas Waifs an’ Strays one year . St. George’s Hall , many , many thousands of Merseysiders givin’ it one …. Heaven . Alas , alongside Big Fred , not really feeling part of it , I’ll wager , was Young Johnny . He played 14 games in all with one as a Sub’, and scoring 2 goals . Catterick’s side experienced its worst Championship finish – 11th , but nobody was really moaning .

    Season 1966/67 was the year Catterick REALLY began to construct his 2nd great side . The main , Key Of The Works , manifestation was of course , the purchase of the World Cup Winning Alan James Ball , Jnr . He was added to the guile of Young , the skilful endeavour of The White Pele , Labby ; imperious at the centre of our defence , Ray Wilson , the finest Left Back around , and Westy , whom would’ve gotten far more Caps if Banks had not been England’s Goalie . The was something to work with . Our Left Side was still occupied primarily , by Derek Temple , but Moggsy’s ability with the ball at his feet , allied to , his superb crossing , and his being able to hold on to the ball when we were under pressure or outnumbered in an area were the sum parts of a very good Footballer . Seriously , Johnny’s , Nails Rep’ – though undoubtably merited , usually in any write-ups , outshine his skills as a Footballer , which were considerable . In 1966/67 he would break into the first team and stay there through the School of Science .Bally announces his arrival with the winner at Fulham on his debut , and 2 in a 3-1 over the Vermin at The Old Lady . So , this was how it was going to be then ,… Well , not really actually . For the first two months they struggled to find their feet . What it was , was Bally and The Vision learning when to time runs , which ball when , kinda stuff . Moggsy scored his first of the Campaign in the corker against West Brom at home , the game ending 5-4 . We barely manage to overcome Aalborg , The Danes , over 2 legs , 2-1 . Then 4 League victories on the bounce . Alas we get our annual Euro Hard Luck Story at Real Zaragoza and are unable to overturn a 0-2 away leg , with a 1-0 home win . The major incident of the Campaign comes at Blackpoool , where Catterick , having dropped Alex Young in favour of 16 year old Joe Royle and alleges that he is , ” Kicked ” , by irate Evertonians . He may have exaggerated , he may not . Whatever , it spoke volumes for The Golden Vison’s standing among Santo Domingans . However , the other major historically relevant occurence was the purchase , early in the New Year of Howard Kendall , Preston’s excellent midfield dynamo , as The Catt’ foresaw an Everton Engine-Room with ALL the desired components . We lose 3 from 5 . We have a RS Derby on New Year’s Eve ..??? Are you fukn sure …??? Nils each . Again we go well in the F.A. Cup , Burnley are despatched 2-1 in a replay . Wolves , ditto in the Fourth Round . The week after , West Ham are battered , 4-0 as Johnny Morrissey gets one . Round 5 is The RS at home . Bally of course sees them off . 3 already against them in 7 months … Damn ,.. 3 more Domestic defeats from 4 . We draw Nottingham Forest at their place in the Quarter Final of the Cup and are beaten as Storey-Moore becomes the first hyphonated name to kick our arses . In the League it remained one step forward , 2 back , as the side is in transition . Johnny Morrissey bags a Hat-Trick in our final day 4-1 win over the Mackems as we go on to finsh 6th , twelve points off the Title . Moggsy made 40 starts in all competitions scoring 7 goals .

    With the dawning of Season 1967/68 Evertonians were rubbing their hands together . Granted , the Great Royston Vernon had departed , as had Pickering . Brian Harris , Chico Scott also would not survive the transition , as Catterick went for youth . Royle , Jimmy Husband , Tommy Wright , Ernie Hunt , Alan Whittle , Roger Kenyon , Tommy Wright , all make their bows in this Season . Even Micheal Owen’s Dad , Terry made his 2 only Everton appearances in this year . The start could not have been better . The Mancs atGoodison . They , with Best , Law , Charlton et al , were Champions . Catterick allowed the cameras in and in front of over 60,000 we proceeded to dismantle them in what was in fact , The Golden Vision / Bally Show . Both scored , Alex got 2 as we win 3-1 . So then , not a bad beginning . Then , of course , we come back to Earth . A draw and two losses , the scenond of which at Goodison . 2 wins , a defeat . A 5-0 victory , 2 losses – the second of which , 0-1 at Grey Skull .
    Johnny Morrisey shared the winger’s duties this term with Jimmy Husband due to a combination of injury and the Manager’s tactical gambits . Indeed , he scores his first of the season in L.C.A.B’s First Goodison Experience . The 2-0 , home defeat of Tramcar Rovers , in the F.A. Cup 5th Round . He would have been made up , an’ I’m still going today . He also scores the following game , Easter Monday I think , as we demolish West Bromwich Albion 6-2 at The Hawthorns . Me Arl Fella goes , an’ proceeds to wake me up an’ describe the evening , the incidents which led to the 2 penalties our mutual hero had slotted along with two of his own that night . He only scored the 4 . I WAS 4 . We draw Leicester at Filbert Street in the 6th Round of the Cup . We triumph 3-1 , and from there go on a little run of wins – 6 from eight games , until we face our Nemesis , Leeds United at Old Trafford in the Semi Final of the F.A. Cup . In Joe Royle’s Sermon , I omitted the tale of this day . Big Joe was designated Penalty Taker in Bally’s absence – he was suspended , but had been stressing all week over it . The day before the game Joe finally asks Johnny if he doesn’t mind taking over ..??? The Catt’ O.K’s it , and , of course , during the game we get a Penalty , which Moggsy duly slots as we win 1-0 and are Wembley Bound once more .

    The F.A. Cup Final of 1968 was supposed to be the Beginning of The School of Science Domination of English Football . We had everything . The Holy Trinity , Labby , Ramon Wilson , The Golden Vision . They had Jeff Astle . We also played in our away strip for the only ever time at the Great Old Stadium . As you are no doubt aware , it was just , one of those days . We never really settle , and certainly never do justice to the individuals within or ranks , as Astle – the very same , literally swings at one from the edge of the area which flies past Westy and into the top corner of the net . They defeat us 0-1 , an’ talk about , Kill-The-Buzz ,..???!!! I was only a Nipper but I can remember the devastation in My Peoples after it , an’ I recall Me Mother tellin’ me to give Me Da’ , A Wide One , for 6 months or so ,.. We complete our Domestic Fixtures with a 5-1 home victory over Fulham as Johnny scores his last goal of the year and we trounce them . We end up 5th in the First Division standings but only 6 points off the top . That and reaching the Cup Final , allied to the transition thing , bought Catt’ patience . Peeps could see this was a , Work-In-Progress , but a Masterpiece at that . John Morrissey played 36 games in all competitions , scoring 5 goals , but finally establishing himself as a permanent fixture in the team , as Harry Catterick sought the Fourth Man , to compliment The Holy Trinity .

    Wembley defeats can be funny things . They can either be catalysts for progress , or the antithesis , and become – via the inherent disappointment , forces of negativity . Fortunately , ours was the former . Everybody within the Club knew that we were , The Dog’s ,… , moreover , if we played them 10 times , we would win 8 . Thus , a bad day at the office , an’ let’s move on . Talking of on ; On the field the major news was that of the departure of Alexander Young – The Golden Vision , to Glentoran of Ireland to be a Player/Manager and wasting a truly beautiful talent ; and whom , behind Bill Dean an’ Alan Ball , was perhaps the most favoured ever Son of Santo Domingo . He was indeed Worshipped , but like everybody else of the period was not treated well by Mr. Catterick . It still rankles with The Vision and that just about says it for me .

    Thus , Season 1968/69 got underway . 2 wins , two defeats , 2 draws – the last a Derby nils each . Hmmmm . Johnny Morrissey scores his first of the year in an away draw at Stamford Bridge , Chelsea , before we embark on a run of 5 wins from 8 games – he scores his second this season in a 5-1 win over Luton Town . The other three matches are drawn . One of the draws is a 1-1 at Grey Skull as Bally gets his only Deep End goal . We despatch Q.P.R. , 4-0 – Moggsy scores ; and Leicester City 7-1 in consecutive home games . Ipswich are beaten in the F.A. Cup 3rd Round at home . Coventry suffer a similar fate , 2-0 in the following round . Another 4 consecutive wins – in the first of which , a 4-0 win over Wolves . Johnny gets the last goal . The final game in the sequence is a victory over Manchester United at Old Trafford . This precedes 2 draws , two defeats as they were close , and knew it . We face Manchester City – the eventual winners at Villa Park in another F.A. Cup Semi Final . This time , however , Lady Luck was not with us , and we go down 0-1 . Indeed , in the antithesis of the Wembley defeat and our start to the Campaign , this does affect us as we win only 3 of our remaining 11 games . It certainly cost us a genuine shot at the Championship , as we finish 3rd , behind Leeds and The Vermin , 10 points adrift . Bally , Labby and many others believe that this should have been our Second Championship as the School of Science / The Holy Trinity Vintage . Add that to the Cup Final debacle , the Semi Finals ,… We were a proper side . Johnny Morrissey made 46 appearances in all , netting 5 times . Indeed , with regards to the side nowbeing settled , only 12 players made ten or more First Team starts in 1968/69 . It was coming together ,…

    The final Season of the 1960′s , for many Evertonians born too late to see Dixie or the 1938/39 side , represents the Evolutionary High-Water-Mark in the Annals of Everton Football Club . The previous decade , for the most part , had been consistent progression . Say what you like about Catterick – and I intend to in his Sermon ; but in Vernon , Young , Gabriel , Collins , Kay , Harvey , Kendall , Baly , Labby , Ray Wilson , Westy , Tommy Wright , and many others , the Goodison Faithful were rewarded beyond their wildest dreams over a considerable period , but this , this was the year the jigsaw finally , fell into place .
    Our opening eight matches produced 7 wins and a draw , with Moggsy netting 3 games running , in the wins against Crystal Palace and Manchester United and the away draw at Maine Road , Manchester . We then get beat at Derby County , pre-another 3 consecutive victories . A draw , then a 4-2 beating of Southampton , with Big Joe grabbing a Hat-Trick , as the goals began to flow . 3-2 against Wolves , 3-1 against Man’ City , as Morrissey gets a goal , then 2 games later we destroy Stoke City with Gordon Banks in goal , 6-2 . This time Moggsy nabs two . One nightmare of this magnificent Annus , was a 0-3 blistering at Grey Skull . No matter , we just picked up again . 3 one-nil wins in a row , two 2-1 losses . Moggsy scores in another defeat at Southampton , 1-2 , following our surprise exit from the Football Association Challenge Cup at the 3rd Round , 1-2 at Sheffield United . We kick on from March , 2-1 against Burnley . Suprs , 1-0 , and 3-2 twice in 3 days . Revenge – of sorts from our Goodison hiding off the Bealzebubs , as we go to The Deep End and win 2-0 . The week after we cane Chelsea 5-2 at The Old Lady . Now , we’re on a roll . Another home win against Stoke City clinches the Championship , and the Trophy is paraded in our final home fixture against W.B.A. . We win at Sheffield United and draw at Roker Park to bring the finest Season , with the finest side , in our history . The spine of the side , Westy , Labby , Bally an’ Joe Royle was the equal of anything . Anywhere . Moreover , there was Tommy Wright , Keith Newton , International Full Backs both , Alan Whittle , Jimmy Husband , whom both more than pulled their weight . Of course , Colin Harvey and Howard Kendall made up the Ultimate Midfield Triumverate , but Johnny Morrissey too , should not be overlooked . He went on to play in all but one League game and started in 46 matches in total , scoring 9 goals , in what he would no doubt concur , was the height of his powers .

    The Jules Rimet Trophy was up for grabs as England , as Holders travelled to Mexico to defend their Crown . We sent 4 players – Johnny never having played International Football was not among them , and would pay dearly over the medium and long-term as a result . We began our Reigning Champions Campaign with a Charity Sheild victory over Chelsea , winning 2-1 and maintaining our superb record in that fixture . John Morrissey scores in our opening 2 games – two draws . The next 5 saw three draws , two defeats . Then , six wins on the bounce – Morrissey netting in the Burnley and Coventry games , including a 6-2 win over Keflavik , as Alan James Ball Jnr. becomes the Primary Evertonian to score a Hat-Trick in the European Cup . Three losses from the next 6 saw us stumble domestically , though one of the games in the string was the away leg of the European Cup 2nd Round in Moenchengladbach – Bally’s Proudest Moment as a Blue as he Skippered the team in Labby’s absence – This Internet Phenomenon has a signed pictorial memento of the toss up with Himself and Gunther Netzer in my Living Room . I digress . We draw the home game too , 1-1 with Moggsy scoring our goal in the Park End ; thus become the first Clubs to take part in a Penalty Shoot-Out in the European Cup . As they went first , Johnny Morrissey as our appointed taker , became the First Evertonian and the First Englishman to take a Spot Kick in a European Cup Knockout . He scored of course , as we went on to defeat them as Andy Rankin enjoyed his moment in the Sun – though of course it was an evening fixture , but , Poetic Licence , My Congregation ,.. It was also the night I fell in love with this fine Institution FOR LIFE . For Better Or For Worse . In Sickness And In Health , etc … THIS was the night , like ,..

    Another Utter Nightmare of a Grey Skull Derby . This time we take a 2-0 half time lead . Both goals – Royle and Whittle ; in The Deep End . But , yes , you’ve guessed it , Mufukas come back and get 3 second half goals and The Shankley Bandwagon continued to roll . We blew it . Us . We knew we had too , but this season was turning out that way . Our League campaign continued to frustrate . Too many draws , but when we were on , we were on , if you follow . This is hardly surprising in a team which contains The Holy Trinity , but results bear manifest , also . Having defeated Southampton 4-2 in December , with Johnny getting a goal , then in January beat both Chelsea and Middlesborough at home in consecutive weeks . The latter of which was the F.A. Cup 4th Round , a Competition which continued to favour us . Colchester provided the , Gimme , in the Quarter Final , thus another Semi-Final backons . We draw the distinctly shady Panathaniakos in the following Round of the Champions Trophy . Our fears were diving , spitting , cheating , and all round subterfuge and no-mark’ery . We were not to be disappointed . The home game finishes one’s each . A win and 2 losses – the last at Forest with Mick Lyons opening his Everton account , precede the most critical week in our Club’s History to that point , as we face the Second Leg of the Greeks Tie and the Semi Final at Old Trafford , against none other than The Lucifers . We at least turn up in Athens , but are still , Green , as regards Europen Football . We are denied a clear penalty and are ultimately vanquished , as the game ends goalless , on the away goals rule . Later , the Referee was later under investigation for having taken bribes . Fact , btw . On the Saturday , The Goodison Empire finally began to crumble , as we take a first half lead , with Bally scoring in the Stretford End . However , Brian Labone picks up the injury which would eventually ruin his career and has to leave the field . Sandy Brown , THAT own goal aside , a fine servant for Everton F.C. was unfortunately under par that particular afternoon as they once more come back to beat us . This time 1-2 . Given our none-event League challenge , our season had just evaporated in 3 days . You could see it on the player’s faces . They were broken . So were we . That we win only one of our remaining 7 matches stands testimony to this theory . We end a heartbereaking defence of the trophy in an unbelieveable , though largely due to our post O.T. submission , understandable 14th place . John Morrissey played in 45 games and got 7 goals , as Harry Catterick was not happy .

    Well , if we thought that 1970/71 was painful , we , as someone once noted , Had Seen Nothing , Yet ,… as 1971/72 presented itself . If I were to illustrate that having defeated Newcastle United on October 20 , we gained our 4th victory of the season . In our 16th game , you may grasp the general aura . It basically just never got started . There were some incidents of note – and those far more significant , also ; for example a Derby victory ,in which RS Tawt Johnson maintained his record of scoring on his debut in Leage , League Cup , Cup , European Cup and now the Derby . Also , as Perennial Trend-Setters , we unveil our all-singing , all-dancing new electronic scoreboard , which rang to the sound of an 8-0 victory over Southampton in its initial appearance . However , the Bomb-Shell , the Killer , as Evertonians of such an age would testify came on December 22nd when Everton announced that they had accepted a bid from Arsenal for Alan Ball . The fee was agreed at �220,000 , a British Record , thus doubling their own Record Breaking �110,000 they paid Blackpool . In a moment , My Personal World stopped turning , as did many others , but also the History of Everton football Club went off on a tangent from that very day ,that a decade would not be enough to recover . The too many draws , defeats thing kicked-in again . Any legitimate Title challenge had gone . However , we remained in the Cup . That was of course until Tottenham beat us 2-0 in the 5th Round . Thus , our Campaign petered out , though with a side containg Lyons , Buckley , Bernie Wright , RS Tawt Johnson and Peter Scott . Within 18 months , Tommy Wright , Labby , Bally and Johnny Morrissey had gone . We end up in an undeniably reality checking 15th place , and Johnny making his final 15 appearances – all in the League , without finding the net . Suffering from a persistent knee injry and with The Catt’ , now not a well man himself , seeking to change , Johnny Morrissey sought refuge elsewhere , and Oldham Athletic provided the Haven . He made 256 starts for Santo Domingo and scored 45 goals and was our finest piece of business with the Vermin until Kevin Sheedy , another with a bit of a Left Foot .

    He went to Boundary Park but his injury had become chronic . He played only 6 games for the Lancastrians , scoring once before being forced to retire from Professional Football and drifting from the game altogether . Well , drifting personally out , but his Son , John Junior , left Everton as a Youth to join Tranmere Rovers where he became a big success in their development into the Club that Aldridge would eventually take to Wembley . A wide left player , just like his Dad , he is still quoted by some Rovers Fans as their favourite All Time Player . Fair play to him . Moreover , Johnny Snr. was most often in attendance .

    Upon any review Johnny Morrissey it is imperative to concentrate if only for a second on his Hard Man Rep’ . In an age of Tough , Tough Guys – Real One’s , Moggsy more than held his own . The Media concentrated on their Favourites , Norman , ” Bites Ya’ legs ..” , Hunter , Ron ,
    ” Chopper ..” , Harris , Tommy , ” RS Tawt ..” Smith , etc . Moreover , Jack Charlton had gone on TV to state that he kept a , Little Black Book to remember any transgressions against him or His Peoples . Well , none of them ever fancied it with Moggsy . Indeed , on one occasion in an Everton – Leeds game , noted for its ferocity , he left Charlton postrate and said , ” Put THAT in Ya’ Little Black Book ..” Repartee too ..!!! Jimmy Greaves said of Johnny that , ” He liked to get his retaliation in early …” The White Pele stated that , ” EVERYONE wanted to be on Morrissey’s team . Even in training ” . And The Golden Vision commented , ” There were no , Handbags or Warnings , in the ’60′s . Just basic , Violence , and Johnny more than held his own ..” Enough ,I believe , said .

    In writing today’s Sermon I have had cause to re-examine some wonderful times and players . Though that which has struck me most is the list of players , team mates and opponents , all of a reputation themselves , whom note Johnny’s Team player Ethos allied to his superb Footballer skills , as well as his being , Nails . Indeed , Alex Young cites his influence in the 1970 Championship win as , ” Second ony to Bally …” Once more , a finer epitaph I could not provide . He is without doubt an Everton Icon .

    Thus , My Congregation , Thank the Almighty in his provision of Johnny Morrissey , one time RS , but 2 time Championship Winner , Boss Team Man , Superb Winger and Hard Case without parallel . He is without doubt a St. Domingo Legend .

    Amen

    Look after Your Peoples .

    Peace Out .

    The Catholic Reverand L.C.A.B.

    “…I know My Peoples hearin’ me . Hollah , if y’all need me . Word …”"    

  3. 13-03-2011, 01:00 PM
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