Everton's goals in the 2-1 win over West Brom came courtesy of Leighton Baines after yet another swashbuckling performance from the marauding left-back and it begs the question… is Leighton Baines Everton’s best ever left back?
These types of questions are always difficult to answer considering the difference between the standards of football being played now and in generations before but there is certainly a case to argue that Baines, who I personally feel is the best left-back in the world right now, is indeed Everton’s best ever.
So here is his case and the case of other nominees.
Baines most obvious attributes are of course his attacking ones. In the modern game full-backs are expected to join the attack far more than some of the other players on the shortlist may have been asked. A wonderful crosser of the ball he is consistently creating the most chances in the Everton starting line-up and is also assured from the penalty spot.
Can you question his defensive contribution? Personally I don’t think so.
England’s left back when they conquered the world in 1966 Wilson made over 100 appearances in his five years at Goodison and accumulated a total of 63 caps for England. It I hard for me, a 23-year-old, to truly speak of his talent but he did win the FA Cup and World Cup in the same year.
Some may argue that this man had an even better delivery on him then Baines himself and that would be a fair point. A popular choice in Everton best ever XI’s he won the FA Cup with Everton in 1995 and also made seven appearances for England during his time at the club.
Pat Van Den Hauwe
‘Psycho Pat’ was as notorious off the pitch as he was on it but did play an integral part in winning the European Cup Winners Cup and two league titles during his five-year-stint on Merseyside. Links with The Krays, the best drinker in Toxteth and marrying the ex of a Rolling Stone made him a household name but he now lives out a quieter existence in South Africa where he finished his football career in 1997.
Tommy E. Jones
Tommy Jones was a one-club man who deserved more than his early retirement from football aged 31 with a shattered kneecap. He evolved into more of a centre half but was always equally adept out on the left. He worked at Littlewoods becoming the Senior Purchasing Officer after the end of his career and sadly passed away in 2010 aged 80.
Is Leighton Baines the best of them all?
image: © wonker