EVERTON CLOSE IN ON FIRST DIVISION SUMMIT AFTER HOME WIN AGAINST WOLVES:
It was another good day for the Goodison Park faithful as Everton beat Wolverhampton Wanderers 2-0 to move to within a point of league leaders Liverpool. The Toffees introduced their new Â£300,000 signing Colin Todd who recently arrived from Derby County and the England international slotted straight into Gordon Leeâ€™s starting XI this afternoon.
Wolves are rock bottom of the first division right now and they got off to a disastrous start in the Merseyside sunshine when a defensive mix-up between goalkeeper Paul Bradshaw and defender John McAlle gave deadly England striker Bob Latchford the easiest of chances to put the hosts ahead after just five minutes and finally get his first league goal of the season.
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Worse was to follow for the hapless McAlle, who was having an afternoon to forget as he brought down Evertonâ€™s Mickey Walsh in the penalty area to give the referee no option but to award the home side a spot-kick. Andy King duly obliged to get his sixth goal of the campaign.
Everton were now in the comfort zone and came out for the second-half looking to add to their tally. Martin Dobson was giving the Wolves defence a torrid time with his wing play down the left but as much as they tried, the home side could not put the ball in the back of Bradshawâ€™s net to make the scoreline match their total superiority.
The Goodison fans will have gone home more frustrated than happy having seen their side fail to capitalise on a blistering opening quarter. They will however, be consoled when they see their team sitting just a point behind city rivals Liverpool at the top of the first division.
LIVERPOOLâ€™S PERFECT START COMES TO AN END AT THE HAWTHORNS:
Liverpoolâ€™s 100 per-cent start to the new campaign is over after a hard fought 1-1 draw against West Bromwich Albion at The Hawthorns this afternoon. In a match that always looked like a difficult away trip for Bob Paisleyâ€™s men, the Reds fell behind on 51 minutes thanks to a brilliant individual goal from highly-rated winger Laurie Cunningham.
Manager Ron Atkinson has built a team in the Black Country that sets out to entertain and with an average age of just over 24, the good times look to be coming back for Baggies fans. They had to settle for a point this afternoon, however, after ace marksman Kenny Dalglish levelled after 66 minutes in what will go down as one of the strangest goals of the season.
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Albion keeper Tony Godden had the ball in his hands and was bouncing it up and down ready to take the goal-kick. In a heated discussion with skipper John Wile, Godden was unaware of Dalglishâ€™s presence and as he bounced the ball too close to the Scottish international, Dalglish stuck out a foot and deflected it into the net. The visitors merited their piece of good fortune and a point apiece was a fair reflection of the contest.
Liverpool now look forward to Wednesdayâ€™s European Cup return against Nottingham Forest at Anfield with the Reds needing to claw back a two-goal deficit from the first-leg.
WEEK 7 ROUND-UP:
Manchester United were back in the capital as they visited Highbury to take on Arsenal. They headed back to the North-West with a share of points thanks to a goal from Steve Coppell. David Price got the Gunnersâ€™ reply.
Champions Nottingham Forest drew yet again, this time having to settle for a 2-2 result against Middlesbrough at the City Ground. Young striker Garry Birtles and Northern Ireland midfielder Martin Oâ€™Neill were on target for Brian Cloughâ€™s side; David Mills and David Armstrong replying for the visitors.
Manchester City followed up last weekâ€™s demolition of Chelsea with a comfortable 2-0 win against Spurs at Maine Road. Gary Owen and Stamford Bridge hat-trick hero Ron Futcher gave Tony Bookâ€™s team the points. Chelsea were the visitors to St. Andrews to face a struggling Birmingham City side. It ended honours even, however, Don Givens scoring for the hosts with Duncan McKenzie on target for the Londoners.
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A five goal thriller at Burnden Park saw Bolton see off the challenge of Norwich City. A brace from Frank Worthington and a goal from Neil Whatmore was enough to give the Trotters the points. Keith Robson and Kevin Reeves on target for the Canaries.
High-flying Coventry City were held to a goalless draw by Leeds United at Highfield Road and Derby County edged out Southampton at the Baseball Ground thanks to Charlie George and an own goal from Chris Nicholl; a David Peach penalty turned out to be only a consolation for the Saints.
Queens Park Rangers fans have a new hero in striker Rachid Harkouk. The youngster was on target again at Loftus Road this afternoon, grabbing the only goal as the Hoops saw off the challenge from Aston Villa. Finally, FA Cup holders Ipswich Town were surprisingly beaten 1-0 by Bristol City at Portman Road. The game was decided by a Tom Ritchie penalty.
FIRST DIVISION RESULTS â€“ SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 23rd
Arsenal 1-1 Manchester United (Price; Coppell)
Birmingham City 1-1 Chelsea (Givens; McKenzie)
Bolton Wanderers 3-2 Norwich City (Worthington 2, Whatmore; Robson, Reeves)
Coventry City 0-0 Leeds United
Derby County 2-1 Southampton (George, Nicholl o.g; Peach pen)
Everton 2-0 Wolves (Latchford, King pen) (VIEW THE MATCH PROGRAMME BY CLICKING BELOW)
Ipswich Town 0-1 Bristol City (Ritchie pen)
Manchester City 2-0 Tottenham Hotspur (Owen, Futcher R)
Nottingham Forest 2-2 Middlesbrough (Birtles, Oâ€™Neill; Mills, Armstrong)
Q.P.R. 1-0 Aston Villa (Harkouk)
UPCOMING FIXTURES – SATURDAY 30TH SEPTEMBER
Aston Villa v Nottingham Forest
Bristol City v Everton
Chelsea v W.B.A.
Leeds United v Birmingham City
Liverpool v Bolton Wanderers
Manchester United v Manchester City
Middlesbrough v Arsenal
Norwich City v Derby County
Southampton v Ipswich Town
Tottenham Hotspur v Coventry City
Wolves v Q.P.R.
FOLLOW THE WHOLE 1978-79 SEASON IN THE ENGLISH FIRST DIVISION WITH STEVE MITCHELL HERE ON THE FOOTBALL PINK. FOLLOW HIM ON TWITTER @barafundler