I haven’t updated the blog in a few months now due to being busy organising a wedding and complete life change but as things are starting to come together nicely I’ve decided come back into the world and start blogging again, it’s just a shame I have to start at a sad point with the passing of yet another Everton legend and hero.
Just shy of two weeks ago one of the greatest goalkeepers to ever stand between the Goodison Park sticks passed away after battling with cancer. Though a Yorkshire man born and bred, Gordon West was a diehard Evertonian, a fantastic goalkeeper and a true ambassador of the club. Signed from Blackpool in 1962 his career at Everton spanned over 11 years which saw him start between the sticks over 400 times achieving 2 League medals and FA Cup winners medal and FA Cup runners medal. Although his career at Everton was nothing short of spectacular West only ever received 3 caps for England between 1968-69. After leaving Everton West had a brief spell across the Mersey in Birkenhead with Tranmere Rovers before retiring to take up a role in security as well as being a guest speaker at Sportsman dinners in Merseyside on many occasions.
West was one of those players that my Grandad and Dad would tell me stories about, his heroics and excellect performances in goal was a thing of legends, my Dad even went as far as saying that West was one his first true inspirational footballing icons and made him want to become a goalkeeper the same way Neville Southall inspired me as a young lad. West was known as fantastic character with a huge personality and would happily speak to any Everton and wind up any Liverpool fan. I was lucky enough to run into Gordon back in 2007 on the way home from an away trip to Fratton Park. Despite it being a miserably cold, wet December night and dull Everton draw, West, and one his sons, was happy to chat away to me for a good while whilst sitting in an empty services drinking a cup of coffee.
West was laid to rest after a huge service at Liverpool Cathedral a few days ago attended by hundreds of former Blue and Red players/managers and fans. He will be sorely missed by all Evertonians.
R.I.P Gordon West 1943-2012 – “Nil Satis Nisioptimum”