Everton are the self-styled Grand Old Team to play for. It’s a Grand Old Team to support too. We can’t vouch for either of those statements, however. And yet, we do know our history. We know how the long story of Everton Football Club first became lodged in our own, and so here we are to explain in our own inimitable, yet haggard, fashion. Don’t ask us why they run out to the theme of Z-Cars though. It seems no-one really knows the answer to that.
If we were waiting for our first match against the Toffees, we were kept waiting a while. And then two came along at the same time; one in each of the ‘main’ cup competitions. The first was in the 2013-4 League Cup and went into extra time before our bigger footballing cousins came out on top. The second? Well, our 2013-4 FA Cup meeting at the Lamex was far more decisive in the Toffees’ favour. Maybe it’ll be a case of third time lucky when we come across them again?
It’s 1878 and the members of St Domingo church need something to do during the winter. Cricket, as you may guess, is only good for so much of the year. Football is the solution, and so the club is born; renamed Everton the following year to better represent that part of Liverpool. Within a decade, the Toffees are one of the first members of the Football League and a long, rich heritage is set in motion. We could be here for a while…
To cut a long story short because we’ve all got lives to lead, it ain’t long before the club establishes itself as a dominant force in English football. Everton were, for example, the third-ever champions of the land – and the last before the Second World War Two saw regular football come to a halt in 1939. That was their fifth title, by the way, and there were also two FA Cup wins during this time. But have they ever won the Conference? Er. No.
It’s not as if they’ve ever had the chance to. Not since 1954 have the Toffees been outside the top flight. Only Arsenal can beat that stretch. There has been enough glory along the way; the mid-1980s in particular: League Cup runners-up and FA Cup winners (1984); league champions, FA Cup runners-up and European Cup Winners’ Cup, erm, winners (1985); league and FA Cup runners-up (1986); and champions for a ninth time (1987).
Times have been a bit leaner since Sky invented football in 1992. In the first 10 years of the Premier League, it wasn’t unusual for the Toffees to risk their long unbroken stand in the top flight, before pulling it round at the 11th hour. Or relying on goal difference, as they did in 1998! And, yet, there was still a little sprinkling of glory amid the comparative league gloom; the club winning the 1995 FA Cup against Manyoo.
How to get to Everton – Travel Information – Distance: 191 miles
The first part of the journey by car is relatively simple; travel north on the M1 (or A1/A14 if you prefer) and join the M6. Continue on the M6 until you reach Junction 21a for the M62 and take the westbound carriageway, which will be signposted Liverpool, Warrington and Southport.
Once you reach the outskirts of Liverpool and the end of the M62, continue onto the A5080 or Bowring Park Road as it is also called. Shortly afterwards, you need to get into the right lane and turn right onto the A5088 Queens Drive. After 3.6 miles, turn left onto the A580 Walton Hall Avenue and follow it until you reach Spellow Lane.
You will have already seen the stadium before the Spellow Lane turning, but it will take you to the venue’s road entrance.
If you arrive in good time, you might be able to source local street parking around the ground. But otherwise, you might need to park towards Anfield or in Stanley Park; the latter having an £8 cost.
Services to: LIVERPOOL CENTRAL (for LIVERPOOL LIME STREET)
Kirkdale is your nearest station for Goodison Park and serves Liverpool Central, though this is not a station that will link you to services back towards Leeds for Stevenage/London; you will need Lime Street for this. Alternatively, you might want to consider Sandhills as there is a bus service in operation from here on matchdays.
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