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FA Cup Final 1966 – the “forgotten” final / FA Cup Final 1966 – the “forgotten” final

FA Cup Final 1966 – the “forgotten” final

By on 15 March 2018

Everton overcame a 2-goal deficit to win thrillingly 3-2 against Sheffield Wednesday in the 1966 FA Cup Final. Yet when remembering 1960’s Finals, Spurs’ Double team exploits, Manchester United’s first silverware post-Munich, Liverpool’s very first-ever FA Cup win, as well as WBA’s and Manchester City’s exploits appear much more readily in the mind.

Amidst all the bally-hoo of England’s hosting and, of course, winning the World Cup, we think that this Final got lost in the euphoric aftermath of “England’s Greatest Day”. So here’s a celebration of that Final with regular feature writer, Pat Collins, making his annual winner prediction – and getting it right as nearly always! Plus a summary of that year’s competition. As always you can click and expand the individual pages uploaded from the original magazine.

Whilst on the subject of 1966 and all that, you can still get our Charles Buchan’s Road to Wembley 1966 book, packed with content and pictures from Charles Buchan’s Football Monthly in the 1950s and 1960s as a celebration of England’s World Cup triumph. Take the link below to buy.





 

EVERTON have the edge in class to find sufficient chinks in this rugged, fast-sealing Wednesday defence and finish with a couple of goals to spare! That is my reading of this surprising Final in which two worthy Wembley contenders have flouted all the critics, myself included.

From a long, long way out from Wembley this was supposed to be a glamour meeting between Manchester United and Chelsea. Only that half of Liverpool which follows Everton and Wednesday’s half of the Sheffield fans thought otherwise.

Ray Wilson won World Cup 2 months later

But this 1965-66 FA Cup Final, following tradition, was only predictable in its unpredictability. The earlier favoured sides cut each other up, then when the expected setting was almost complete, Everton and Wednesday took over the leading roles.

Sheffield Wednesday have reached Wembley the hardest possible way – without once treading their familiar Hillsborough turf. Honest and hard work have been handsomely rewarded for them. And they won each round at the first time of asking.

Everton had more fortune from the draw, but their three titanic struggles with Manchester City in the Sixth Round alone earn them their place. And they did have to remove Manchester United, the all-the-way favourites, from their path.

Having then disposed of both its clubs, Manchester, at least, will agree that Everton are at Wembley on merit.

For me, Wednesday represent strength and solidity. But Everton are strong enough with a great defence which hasn’t conceded a Cup goal so far . . . a wonderful record. They have, too, more men capable of raising their game to meet the challenge and the occasion . . .

Men like Ray Wilson, Jimmy Gabriel, Fred Pickering, Alex Young, and their wingers, Alex Scott and Derek Temple. I think Temple, in particular, will be a real Wednesday problem.

Don Megson – Sheff Wed stalwart

But a few moments of Everton finery will not be enough to daunt Alan Brown’s men. Victory will be hard-earned and hard-won.

For Wednesday have the durability of half-backs Peter Eustace and Gerry Young to track and tame anything but the best from the Everton inside-forwards. This pair will fight like tigers in the mid-field battle on which this could hinge.

And there is always that great clubman, John Fantham, to harness and guide the dash and spirit of youngsters like Dave Ford and Jim McCalliog—and experience enough in a defence which has Ron Springett and skipper Don Megson as a strong base.

We may not leave Wembley on May 14, listing it among the Cup classics. I’m certain we will have witnessed a tight, tough match from two go-all-the-way teams.

My forecast is that Everton’s Harry Catterick will be the manager wearing the Cup-winning smile that evening to make fools too of the louts who attacked him after his side’s defeat at Blackpool last January.

Action from the match –

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