A ROAD WELL TRAVELLED; EVERTON Have Traditionally Looked North of the Border for Striking Talent - and More Specifically to West Glasgow to Bolster Their Striking Options. from Pre-War Wonder Kid Torry Gillick to Current Hero Nikica Jelavic, Ibrox Has Been a Profitable Source of Goalscorers for the Blues. They Will Hope That Steven Naismith Can Follow in the Footsteps of Duncan Ferguson, Alex Scott and Co
Byline: DAVID PRENTICE
TORRY GILLICK HAILED as a 19-year-old "Wonder Boy" Everton broke their transfer record just before Christmas 1935 to land a thrilling Glasgow Rangers winger who had scored 17 goals in 17 games for the Ibrox club.
Gillick cost pounds 8,000, and in an example of the kind of horse-trading that surrounded player transfers then, the teenager knew nothing about the deal until it was completed!
The Liverpool ECHO reported: "Until yesterday Gillick did not know that Everton desired his transfer. Both Everton and Rangers agreed that there should be no mention of the club or the player until, the transfer was completed. Everton made an offer for Gillick, terms were agreed upon by the clubs, and yesterday Mr Theo Kelly, the acting secretary of the Everton club, went to Glasgow to complete the deal."
Fortunately Gillick was not unhappy to make the switch.
A wiry winger, a natural entertainer and an exhilarating sight in full flight, Gillick helped maintain the tradition of top-class Scottish players at Goodison when he won a League Championship medal in 1939.
Described as: "A dangerous raider, two-footed, and a rare shot" he scored nine goals in 23 appearances in his first season.
The following campaign he increased that tally to 16 and in 1938/39 helped the Blues to the title, scoring the final goal of the glorious campaign against Aston Villa - and getting knocked clean out at the same time!
Like many players of that era his peak years were wiped out by the Second World War and he returned to Rangers in November 1945, after a 133-match Everton career in which he scored 44 goals.
ALEX STEVENSON IF there was an award for Everton's greatest Scottish import, the skilful, ball-playing Stevenson would be somewhere near the top.
An Irish international when he signed in February 1934, the Liverpool Post and Mercury reported: "Stevenson is a player Everton have tried to secure for some time, but when arrangements were almost completed recently the player decided that he wanted to stay in Glasgow, however he changed his mind."
Everton were delighted he did.
He made his debut at Highbury against Arsenal and helped Dixie Dean and co. secure a first league double for two seasons.
"A delightful positional player, a shrewd schemer and a fine marksman with either foot," he went on to enjoy a 15-year career with the Blues, not bad for a player who was initially reluctant to move south. He was a league champion in 1939 and scored 90 goals in 271 games, joining forces with Jackie Coulter to tear many a defence to shreds.
ALEX 'CHICO' SCOTT EVERTON had to spend big again in February 1963 to land the signature of Rangers' right winger Alex Scott.
They were successful, but only after one of the fiercest transfer battles of the decade, with double-winning Tottenham also chasing him.
Harry Catterick was the winner, as he so often was in his transfer dealings, but had to spend pounds 40,000.
Nevertheless it was money well spent.
Scott won a title winner's medal in his first season and was an integral member of the 1966 FA Cup-winning team.
He made 176 appearances in four-and-a-half years at Goodison, scoring 26 goals, before returning north of the border to Hibernian in 1967.
PAUL RIDEOUT AFTER several seasons of a 'midget gem' strike-force at Goodison, Evertonians were crying out for a traditional target-man to accompany diminutive strikers Tony Cottee, Peter Beardsley and another Rangers old boy, Mo Johnston. …