Tomorrow Liverpool face Swansea at Anfield. This fixture has brought a lot of goals through the years. Last season it ended 4-3 and it was 5-0 the year before. 53 years ago the Reds clocked up another 5-0 win, still the largest win margin against Swansea in the league at Anfield. That season, 1961/62, Bill Shankly guided Liverpool to promotion to the top tier of English football.
This was Shankly´s third season as a manager. In the two previous ones the Reds finished third just missing out on the two promotion places. But in 1961/62 the Red machine was unstoppable. Liverpool took charge of the table from day one and held on to the top place the whole season through and finished as champions with an eight point margin.
We faced Swansea in the 19th game of the season on the 25th of November 1961. Liverpool was at the summit and Swansea Town (as they were called in those days, Swansea City nowadays) in 11th place. The difference in league positions was easily detected in this particular match. Not so much in the first half though, it ended 0-0. But after the tea-break the onslaught began promptly.
In the 47th minute Jimmy Melia was first man on the scoreboard. And before Swansea knew what hit them he added a second two minutes later. This was the only season during his ten years at Liverpool when he played in all 42 league games. Swansea was by the way his favourite opponent, Melia scored seven goals against the Welsh side, more than against any other team.
Jimmy Melia started the goal-show and then Mr Goals himself, Roger Hunt, took over. In 22 minutes, between the 60th and 82nd minute, he completed a hat-trick. In eleven seasons he scored 245 times in the red shirt. This season was his best goal-wise finding the net on no less than an incredible 41 times.
Liverpool was in remarkable form the whole season. The Reds scored 99 goals, one of the best records ever. We didn´t lose any home games winning 18 and drawing three. The first eleven league games ended in ten victories and one draw. A similar fine streak was accomplished at the other end of the season when Liverpool lost just two of the final 18 fixtures. On 18 occasions Liverpool scored three goals or more. It was a season to remember and it sent us up the league ladder and since 1962/63 the Reds has been part of the top division in English professional football.
I suspect that a 5-0 win tomorrow is too much to expect but why not another 4-3 victory, just like last season. I seem to remember that Liverpool has a knack of racking up this score-line against the same opposition two years running. I mean who can forget the 4-3 wins at Anfield versus Newcastle in 1996 and 1997?
Here is a rallying cry to inspire the Reds to such a feat:
We Go Again.
Sources: lfchistory.net, statto.com, soccerbase.com.