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"Sinking the Mancs at Old Trafford (1971-72)" by Frank Dacey


In 1972 the Reds were playing catch-up in the title race. A dreadful spell over Christmas and New Year had seen us fail to score in five consecutive league games to leave us 10th in the table. Then the goals started flowing as the Reds began a run of 12 wins in 13 games. 


Heading to Old Trafford on Easter Monday, Liverpool had 6 games left to play and couldn’t afford to slip up. Old Trafford then as now was a difficult place for us to get a result at, though we had won there the previous season.


United, now managed by Frank O’Farrell, but still containing the like of Best, Law and Charlton were second best throughout. The goals took time to come but on the hour mark Chris Lawler made the breakthrough and John Toshack added a second two minutes later. Phil Thompson came off the bench for Toshack to make his first team debut and, with 6 minutes to go, Emlyn Hughes wrapped up the points with the third goal.


Liverpool just missed out on the League that year but ended a seven year honours drought by winning it the year after.


Clemence; Lawler, Smith, Lloyd, Lindsay; Hughes, Hall, Callaghan; Keegan, Toshack (Thompson 81), Heighway:





Season: 1971/72
Opposition: Manchester United
Result: 0-3
Scorers: Chris Lawler, John Toshack, Emlyn Hughes
Venue: Old Trafford


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4 Comments

Wonder how much patience some of our fans today would have with Rodgers if we had a spell of 6 games without scoring next season for instance?

 

These were my first love as a kid - Shankly's promised second all conquering team

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We were on a fantastic run at the time and continued it almost until the end of the season. But we lost the penultimate game at title winning Derby.
Yet as it turned out, if we'd won our final game at Arsenal we'd still have been champions due to favourites Leeds losing (or was it drawing?) at Wolves I think. These 2 games were taking place on the same night and I was glued to the radio, knowing that Leeds were in the process of blowing it.
So all we needed to do was get a goal at Arsenal.
Then with about 2 mins to go, we did get one. For the first time in his life, a young William Morris touched the ceiling, so high did he manage to leap.
By the time I'd landed, referee Roger Kirkpatrick had disallowed it and the dream was over as it finished 0-0.
They say you have to lose one before you can win one, something which I hope at the present time isn't true. But I think we all knew then that it was only a matter of time.
And so it turned out.
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When the final game @ Arsenal was played, Derby had already left the country on an end of season break and so won the title (Clougie's first) whilst on the beach.

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We were on a fantastic run at the time and continued it almost until the end of the season. But we lost the penultimate game at title winning Derby.
Yet as it turned out, if we'd won our final game at Arsenal we'd still have been champions due to favourites Leeds losing (or was it drawing?) at Wolves I think. These 2 games were taking place on the same night and I was glued to the radio, knowing that Leeds were in the process of blowing it.
So all we needed to do was get a goal at Arsenal.
Then with about 2 mins to go, we did get one. For the first time in his life, a young William Morris touched the ceiling, so high did he manage to leap.
By the time I'd landed, referee Roger Kirkpatrick had disallowed it and the dream was over as it finished 0-0.
They say you have to lose one before you can win one, something which I hope at the present time isn't true. But I think we all knew then that it was only a matter of time.
And so it turned out.

I remember the stories at the time that Toshack's disallowed goal was on-side but have never seen it - no tv coverage I suppose which is unthinkable today

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