BBC SPORT Arabic Spanish Russian Chinese
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX    SEARCH 

BBC Sport
 You are in: Special Events: 2000: Wembley  
Sport Front Page
-------------------
Football
Cricket
Rugby Union
Rugby League
Tennis
Golf
Motorsport
Boxing
Athletics
Other Sports
-------------------
Special Events
-------------------
Sports Talk
-------------------
BBC Pundits
TV & Radio
Question of Sport
-------------------
Photo Galleries
Funny Old Game
-------------------
Around The UK: 
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales

BBC Sport Academy
BBC News
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS

  Sunday, 1 October, 2000, 15:05 GMT 16:05 UK
Wembley's Mersey rule
Rush (left) twice hit Wembley doubles against Everton
BBC Sport Online's chief football writer Phil McNulty recalls past meetings between Everton and Liverpool at Wembley.

Everton and Liverpool took more than 60 years to walk out together beneath Wembley's Twin Towers - and then spent the eighties making up for lost time.

The day Merseyside had waited for seemed fated never to arrive, as FA Cup semi-finals pitted the pair together to leave a Wembley showdown tantasingly out of reach.

And then, in 1980 when they were kept apart, Everton and Liverpool were both beaten to pave the way for an all-London affair between Arsenal and West Ham United.

It was the more unfashionable League Cup that finally allowed what seemed like the whole of Merseyside to make its way down the M6 and M1 in 1984.

The match itself was a washout, not only because of a colourless goal-less draw enlivened only by the controversy of an alleged Alan Hansen handball, but also the atrocious weather that reduced conditions to a lottery.

Liverpool won the Maine Road replay 1-0, but Merseyside's soccer community had got the taste for a day out at Wembley, and found their hunger more than satisfied in the coming years.

Everton returned to Wembley later in 1984 to beat Watford in the FA Cup and set up a Charity Shield date with champions Liverpool.

Bruce Grobbelaar's own goal gave Everton a measure of revenge - but Wembley was always kinder to the red half of Merseyside when it played host to the pair.

Lineker and Lawrenson in 1986 FA Cup final

The first all-Merseyside FA Cup Final came in 1986 - and two key figures were men who now normally cross swords in the BBC's Match of the Day studio.

Gary Lineker showed Hansen a clean pair of heels to give Everton a first half lead, but the Blues' long-time nemesis Ian Rush scored twice - with a Craig Johnston goal sandwiched in between - to give Liverpool their first league and FA Cup double.

The next Charity Shield meeting ended in a tame draw, but that was followed by perhaps the most emotional meeting of all at Wembley in 1989.

Liverpool, as a football club and a city, was in mourning after the Hillsborough disaster at the FA Cup semi-final against Nottingham Forest.

A nation's sorrow almost demanded a Liverpool win to offer some comfort to their supporters, but there was also sympathy for Everton.

Liverpool dominated the first 90 minutes and led by John Aldridge's goal deep into injury time, until Everton substitute Stuart McCall equalised.

Invasion

Wembley's fences were down after Hillsborough, and an impromptu pitch invasion took place, but relative calm was soon restored.

If Everton had an influential substitute in McCall, Liverpool had a replacement with a Wembley pedigree and a reputation as the torturer of the old enemy.

Rush scored twice in extra time - repeating his match-winning heroics of three years earlier, despite another goal from McCall.

It is a reflection of the relative barren spells suffered by both clubs that they have come as close to meeting again.

But when the bulldozers move in, it will be Liverpool fans who will cherish treasured memories of the all-Merseyside walks down Wembley Way.

Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Wembley stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Wembley stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

Sport Front Page | Football | Cricket | Rugby Union | Rugby League |
Tennis | Golf | Motorsport | Boxing | Athletics | Other Sports |
Special Events | Sports Talk | BBC Pundits | TV & Radio | Question of Sport |
Photo Galleries | Funny Old Game | N Ireland | Scotland | Wales