Monday, September 5, 2011

English Leagues the 70s: Liverpool West Ham Charity shield 1980

9 August 1980
Wembley Stadium,

Attendance 90,000

  That  was the stinging retort from Liverpool's England international goalkeeper Ray Clemence on TV after the League champions had opened the 1980-81 campaign with another Wembley triumph ... in the FA Charity Shield against FA Cup winners West Ham United. A few hiccups on their pre-season tour, with Liverpool suffering defeats at the hands of Anderlecht and Stuttgart, had set the tongues of the critics wagging. A few contractual problems with key players had also fanned the flames and questions were being asked: were a few cracks beginning to show in the reinforced concrete of England's greatest club? Were Liverpool on the decline? Or, as one cynic suggested, was the 'Empire beginning to crumble'? But the fierce pride of the champions was reflected in Ray Clemence's answer and Liverpool's Wembley victory which gave them their first trophy of the new season. 

 It was Liverpool's tenth appearance in the Charity Shield showpiece — the first in 1922 when they lost 1-0 to Huddersfield Town. During the 'seventies, Liverpool made five Charity Shield appearances — winning four times. Now here they were again in 1980, victors for the furth time in five years. But Liverpool have always believed that charity begins at home! And the man who clinched their Wembley win was double 'Footballer of the Year' Terry McDermott, the tousle-haired midfield star described by his boss Bob Paisley as 'the greatest blind-side runner in football'. Liverpool's football at Wembley was as smooth, stylish and relentless as it had been the previous winter when they stormed to their twelfth championship success. They knocked the ball around on Wembley's lush green carpet as if it was a wooden bead on a piece of string joined from one player to another. West Ham, like so many before them, could only chase and harry and hope for a taste of the action. Only Liverpool's finishing was out of sorts. 

Move after brilliant move ended with an errant shot or an ill-timed header. And, in the end, it took an untidy goal gifted to the champions by West Ham's giant goalkeeper Phil Parkes, to separate the teams. . . if not in ability, then on the score-board. Parkes, British football's most expensive goalkeeper — a £565,000 buy from Queen's Park Rangers in February 1979 — allowed a shot to slip from his huge hands and, in a trice, McDermott had swept it past him and into the West Ham net. But afterwards, amid the celebrations, Liverpool boss Bob Paisley illustrated the tension of life at the top with an uncharacteristic show of caution and concern. He said: "Everyone says it will be good for football if Liverpool don't win anything this season. "If referees were to catch this mood we could find 50-50 decisions going against us and I want to speak out about it before it happens. Referees are, in the main, working men and if they go into their offices and factories and sense this mood among their mates, they could be swayed.

"It would only be good for football if someone came along and beat us when we were at the top of our form. Then, I would be the first to congratulate them". Hardly the words you would expect from the most highly-rated manager in the country just after another triumph. The week after Wembley Liverpool opened their 1980-81 Football League programme with a home game against London's vibrant young challengers Crystal Palace. It was a typical sunshine occasion, full of colour and pageantry, with Paisley stepping out first to receive the Bells Manager of the Year trophy for last year's efforts. Then the Super Reds galloped onto the Anfield pitch and produced a first-half performance against Palace which was so good it mesmerised the visitors and coaxed a fabulous debut-day display from Palace's new goalkeeper Paul Barren, a £400,000 signing from Arsenal. Barren completely stole the limelight from Clive Allen, also making his debut after his incredible double-transfer of the Summer — QPR to Arsenal then on to Palace before he had played a League game for the Highbury club.

Allen, 19, who had picked up around £100,000 from the two moves, was a lone wolf up front as Palace did their best to stem the red tide of attacks at the other end. No wonder Paul Barren commented: "They told me Liverpool couldn't shoot against West Ham at Wembley last week — but they certainly did today. I'm glad we don't have to come here again this season!" Liverpool ran out of steam in the second half but they finished 3-0 winners and Bob Paisley was in much more contented mood afterwards. "I think the lads thought they had something to prove today", he said. And that's the way it is with Liverpool. Last year's success means nothing. A new season means a new challenge. The competition for places is as hot at Anfield as it has ever been, if not hotter. And the men in possession of first-team jerseys jealously protect them. So Liverpool go into 1981 bidding for a hat-trick of League titles ... a hat-trick of European Cup successes. And old fox Bob Paisley sums it up succinctly: "We want to be back at Wembley for the Charity Shield next year. If we are it will mean we have won a major trophy again!"

Liverpool:  R Clemence, P Neal, A Kennedy, P Thompson, R Kennedy, A Hansen, K Dalglish, J Case, D Johnson, T McDermott, G Souness. 
West Ham United:  P Parkes, R Stewart, P Brush, B Bonds, A Martin, A Devonshire, P Allen, P Holland, D Cross, T Brooking, G Pike (sub: N Morgan).  

Codec H264, Mkv
Bitrate 1200
Sound 128 kbps
English Comments
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