By Chris Rowland.
Alexander Tate (‘Tattva’) wrote this piece on King Billy for the TTT Top 20 Players Poll, but Liddell so obviously merits a place in the Past Masters series that we have produced another.
For Reds of a certain generation, Billy Liddell is still the greatest player ever to pull on the liver bird.
Certainly when it comes to all-time Liverpool greats – Dalglish, Gerrard, Scott, Raisbeck – Billy Liddell stands in no one’s shadow. The man who took King Billy’s LFC appearance record, Ian Callaghan, puts Billy right up there along with Dalglish and Gerrard as Liverpool Football Club’s finest ever:
“Billy was my idol when I was at school and it was fantastic to take over from him. He was a god in Liverpool. When Billy got the ball the anticipation from the crowd was just huge. What is he going to do with it? Is he going to shoot from 30 yards or take it past people? He was wonderful. Billy played with a heavy ball on the heavy pitches. The way he used to kick the ball, wow! He was so strong.”
Born in Townhill Scotland in 1922, William Beveridge Liddell signed for LFC in April 1939, but because of the War he didn’t make his full Liverpool debut until January 1946.
A certain Sir Matt Busby had a part to play in Billy Liddell becoming a Liverpool player. Liverpool’s former captain and later legendary Manchester United manager found out that Manchester City had enquired about Billy joining them, but he turned them down. Busby tipped Liverpool off, suggesting that “this Liddell lad might be worth an enquiry”.
On that basis alone, Busby was some judge.
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