BY STEVE MITCHELL
MAGNIFICENT McDERMOTT HELPS LIVERPOOL SINK CITY
Bob Paisley’s impressive Liverpool side kept up their 100 per-cent start to the new season with an exhilarating display against Manchester City at Maine Road. Graeme Souness powered forward to give the visitors the lead after 16 minutes but seven minutes later, the Merseysiders were left furious after City captain Paul Power looked to have received the ball in an offside position before squaring for Brian Kidd to slot home. Kidd has now scored all of City’s goals so far this season.
The home side’s reprieve was shortlived, however, when another brilliantly worked move saw Ray Kennedy fire the Reds back in front on 34 minutes. Terry McDermott once again heavily involved in the build-up. Three minutes after the interval, Liverpool extended their advantage when more brilliance from McDermott caused chaos in the City rear-guard before a flick on by Kenny Dalglish left Souness unmarked to fire in his second and Liverpool’s third.
The home side’s fire was nearly extinguished, although Liverpool goalkeeper Ray Clemence pulled off a spectacular save diving to his right to foil a shot from Paul Futcher, which took a wicked deflection off Kidd. Man of the Match McDermott took the corner that led to Liverpool’s fourth on 56 minutes; a scuffed Alan Kennedy shot was picked up by Dalglish who rounded Joe Corrigan to get his fourth goal of the season.
A truly wonderful display from Paisley’s side on a humid afternoon in Manchester has left everyone in no doubt that the team that finishes above Liverpool this season will win the championship.
MORE GOODISON GLEE FOR EVERTON
Hot on the heels of Liverpool come their city rivals from across Stanley Park as Everton kept up their impressive start to the new campaign with a 1-0 win over Arsenal at Goodison Park. Winger Dave Thomas turned goalscorer three minutes into the second-half to give Gordon Lee’s men the victory over the North London side.
Arsenal defender Willie Young gave the ball away under pressure from Bob Latchford passing it straight into the path of Terry Darracott who centred, only for Gunners keeper Paul Barron to fumble and present a glorious opportunity to Thomas who fired home.
41,179 were inside Goodison this afternoon and most of them headed home dreaming that their team can mount a serious title challenge this season.
WEEK THREE ROUND-UP:
Ipswich Town got their campaign up and running with a comprehensive 3-0 win over Manchester United at Portman Road. A brace from striker Paul Mariner and one from Brian Talbot condemned Dave Sexton’s team to their first defeat of the campaign.
Champions Nottingham Forest were held to yet another goalless draw, this time in the capital against Queens Park Rangers. Brian Clough’s team have scored just once in their opening three matches and are yet to celebrate a victory to leave alarm bells ringing at the City Ground.
Spurs and Chelsea fought out a highly entertaining 2-2 London derby at White Hart Lane. John Duncan and Gerry Armstrong were on target for the home side with Kenny Swain replying for the visitors in front of over 40,000 spectators.
West Bromwich Albion’s impressive start to 1978-79 continues after a 4-0 demolition of new boys Bolton Wanderers at The Hawthorns. Two goals from Tony Brown and one each from Laurie Cunningham and Cyrille Regis ensured Ron Atkinson’s side remain unbeaten this term.
Another newly promoted side, Southampton, got their first win of the season with a 2-1 victory over Middlesbrough at The Dell. Skipper Chris Nicholl and Alan Ball got the Saints’ goals with David Armstrong grabbing a consolation for Boro.
Birmingham City and Derby County shared the points at St. Andrews after a 1-1 draw. Don Givens was on target for the Blues with Northern Ireland midfielder Gerry Daly replying for the Rams.
Impressive in mid-week, Aston Villa went down 1-0 at Bristol City thanks to a goal from centre-half David Rodgers. At Highfield Road, Coventry City hammered Norwich 4-1 with goals from John Beck, Barry Powell, Ian Wallace and Mick Ferguson; Martin Peters got the Canaries consolation.
Leeds United also had a good day in front of their fans at Elland Road with a comprehensive win over Wolves. Ray Hankin, Frank Gray from the penalty spot and Tony Currie on target in a 3-0 win.
FIRST DIVISION RESULTS – SATURDAY AUGUST 26TH
Birmingham City 1-1 Derby County (Givens; Daly)
Bristol City 1-0 Aston Villa (Rodgers)
Coventry City 4-1 Norwich City (Beck, Powell, Wallace, Ferguson; Peters)
Everton 1-0 Arsenal (Thomas)
Ipswich Town 3-0 Manchester United (Mariner 2; Talbot)
Leeds United 3-0 Wolves (Hankin, Gray F. Currie)
Manchester City 1-4 Liverpool (Kidd; Souness 2, Kennedy R. Dalglish)
Q.P.R. 0-0 Nottingham Forest
Southampton 2-1 Middlesbrough (Nicholl, Ball; Armstrong)
Tottenham Hotspur 2-2 Chelsea (Duncan, Armstrong; Swain 2)
W.B.A 4-0 Bolton Wanderers (Brown A. 2; Cunningham, Regis) (DOWNLOAD THE FULL MATCH PROGRAMME BELOW)
Here’s the first league table of the season:
UPCOMING FIXTURES – SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 2ND
Arsenal v Q.P.R.
Aston Villa v Southampton
Bolton Wanderers v Birmingham City
Chelsea v Leeds United
Derby County v Coventry City
Liverpool v Tottenham Hotspur
Manchester United v Everton
Middlesbrough v Ipswich Town
Norwich City v Manchester City
Nottingham Forest v W.B.A.
Wolves v Bristol City
FOLLOW THE WHOLE 1978-79 SEASON IN THE ENGLISH FIRST DIVISION WITH STEVE MITCHELL HERE ON THE FOOTBALL PINK. FOLLOW HIM ON TWITTER @barafundler
PROGRAMMES COURTESY OF MILES MCCLAGAN https://www.flickr.com/photos/114058793@N05/sets