Kevin Ratcliffe captained Everton throughout the most successful period in Goodison history

13/11/2022 15comments  |  Jump to last

A long read in The Echo about Kevin Radcliffe. 

» Read the full article at Liverpool Echo

Reader Comments (15)

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Barry Hesketh
1 Posted 13/11/2022 at 19:41:26
This piece from the Echo gives a potted history of Kevin Ratcliffe's career at Everton.

For those of us who were there, it is a reminder of how privileged we really were. To those that are too young, it's a good read about a different game in a different era.

It is quite a lengthy piece for the Echo, and I'm pretty sure I've read quite a lot of it previously – from an Everton history book?

Paul Hewitt
2 Posted 14/11/2022 at 12:35:16
Great read. Sadly, I don't think them great days will ever come back.
Danny O’Neill
3 Posted 14/11/2022 at 13:17:56
Paul, go and wash your mouth out!

One of the quickest defenders, if not the quickest, I've ever watched.

I forget who the main man was at what we would now call an academy at Bellefield was when I got my chance but fluffed my lines. It was Ray but I don't think Minshull.

I was nervous as hell. I was a late developer physically so it felt like I was surrounded by men and giants even though they were the same age as me. Terry Darracott was fantastic. Took me aside, calmed me down and told me to go and enjoy it. And at the end to come back.

How much does this club owe Colin Harvey? The supporter, the player, the coach. As a coach, it wasn't just those years when he was Howard's Sergeant Major, he also served after that amongst the youth teams. Wayne Rooney spoke fondly of him saying he turned him around at a young age.

In it, Rooney basically is saying he was being over-coached rather than being allowed to be the street footballer he was. I've often said that Barkley wasn't coached enough. It's a balance between letting kids grow naturally and stepping in occasionally to give them tips and tweaks.

Colin Harvey. Biggest Evertonian ever in my view.

Ratcliffe; thank you for the memories. Wembley 1985 will live with me forever.

Peter Mills
4 Posted 14/11/2022 at 16:24:35
Kevin Ratcliffe, a reminder that a “useless player”, “not fit to wear the shirt”, “second division at best” can turn into an all-time great.
Joe McMahon
5 Posted 14/11/2022 at 16:40:49
Hi Everyone, I'm hoping someone could assist me here (thinking of defenders in the early '80s).

I was only a youngster so could someone let me know how good were John Gidman and Mark Higgins?

Cheers Blues.

Brian Murray
6 Posted 14/11/2022 at 17:00:18
Joe. Gidman was an attacking full back by no means the worst we have had but arguably his best time was at Villa and then Man Utd clearing a goal-bound Peter Reid volley off the line in the '85 Cup Final which denied us the treble. Sorry still pains me after a great time nearly a week in Rotterdam and ready to take on the world.

Mark Higgins could easily have been part of our glorious '80s team but for injuries. He retired but then somehow came back and played for Man Utd in 86. Yes you guessed it he headed one off the line v us in one one the 3 away games we had to win to win the title. Common theme, eh.

Tony Abrahams
7 Posted 14/11/2022 at 17:10:32
I remember Gidman, scoring an OG, that helped us beat United 2-1 at Old Trafford in the League Cup, four days after we had smashed United 5-0 in the league at Goodison. 7-1 on aggregate, which is now something little fucking Bournemouth, have just done to us.

We have waited a long time, but hopefully change is finally is coming. I can't see it being as drastic as Everton getting booed off the pitch at Goodison, two days before the New Year, and 18 months later being voted World Soccer team of the year, but soon I'm sure there's going to be change, and hopefully a positive future for Everton FC. 🤞

James Hughes
8 Posted 14/11/2022 at 17:36:26
Peter Mills, good comment as I can still recall when he played at left-back and was getting lots of abuse from the Gwladys Street. He moved to centre-back and was transformed.
Joe McMahon
9 Posted 14/11/2022 at 17:42:03
Thanks Brian and Tony, that's very helpful!
Peter Mills
10 Posted 14/11/2022 at 17:49:39
Joe#5, Brian at 6 has got it right, both very decent players. Nice guys, too.
Jeff Armstrong
11 Posted 14/11/2022 at 18:23:46
Gidman had arguably his best game for us in midfield! in a FA Cup 6th round I think it was against an excellent Ipswich side in 1981. Unfortunately the Hammers knocked us out in the semis in an epic tie.

Higgins was a no-nonsense centre-back who could also play a bit too, his dad played for Bolton in the '50s. He still does a bit at Goodison on match days, he takes a group of people onto the pitch to get a photo with the ref just before kick-off.

Brian Murray
12 Posted 14/11/2022 at 18:52:47
Jeff, Also Gidman man-marked a still class Kevin Keegan out the game in I think the 1981 FA Cup at Southampton. We won the replay (O'Keefe). I think Man City beat us in the last 8 after a replay.
Danny O’Neill
14 Posted 30/11/2022 at 09:31:17
Picking up on this one again. I remember watching Howard Kendall, the then player manager in the early days of his first reign come on in a home game as a sub. I think it was against West Brom and my Dad nearly fainted. I think he thought it was 1969 revisited all over again. I think it was actually 1981 or 1982!!

I remember O'Keefe. I also remember Peter Eastoe from those days.

What I remember from that match, stood behind the caged bars at the front of the Gwladys Street, was that, despite his age, Howard Kendall brought himself on and took grip of the team, barking out the orders.

Random recollection.

Paul Kossoff
15 Posted 03/12/2022 at 18:19:35
Really looked forward to reading this but the red shite echo kept reminding us about the dark sides interventions in our success.
In the end I said enough is enough and clicked off.
Dave Abrahams
16 Posted 03/12/2022 at 18:45:01
Jeff (11) Yes Mark Higgins dad was a regular with Bolton in the 1950’s, he played in the 1958 cup final when Bolton beat Man.Unt. 2-0, the year of the Munich disaster, he was a big robust defender for Bolton along with John Hartle, Malcom Barrass who gave Dave Hickson plenty of hard times and got plenty back, and Tommy Banks who had a bit of class about him and played for England.

He could be seen at Goodison Park many times when Mark played for the Blues, very noticeable with his big red farmers face outside the players entrance waiting for his match tickets.

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