YNWA takes a look back at recent memorable League meetings at Stoke City as we visit them for the 54th time in the League on Saturday evening, with all bar eight of these coming in the top flight. So far, we have won just twelve, drawn eighteen and lost 23.
Little Bamber's bow
University graduate Brian Hall made his reds bow in a goalless fixture in April 1969. He went on to make 224 reds appearances, and is now the club's Community Department Manager.
A start and an end
Inside-right Sammy Smyth made his reds bow in January 1953 as we lost 3-1. Kevin Baron scored our consolation, while outside-left Ken Brierley was playing his 61st and last reds game.
More reds debutants
John ‘Sailor' Hunter scored on his reds bow, as we lost 3-2 in a season opener in September 1899, with skipper Alex Raisbeck also on target and fellow forward Peter Kyle also making his reds bow. Winger John Morrissey debuted in our 2-1 Second Division win in September 1957, with Louis Bimpson and Tony Rowley grabbing the goals.
John Easdale made his reds bow as we lost 2-1 on Christmas Day 1946, with Albert Stubbins netting late on for the reds as we went on to clinch the first post-war title, with Stoke one our main rivals right up to the wire. Inside-left Davy Hannah debuted in our 3-1 defeat back in November 1894, with Neil Kerr grabbing our consolation in what was our first ever visit to the Potters in all competitions.
We left the Victoria Ground with a share of the spoils in September 1933, with Harold Taylor netting as we drew 1-1 with Stoke City, the first time we had visited them under that name. John ‘Nipper' Roberts made his only senior reds outing in this game. Jimmy Harrower was on the scoresheet as we held the Potters to a Second Division draw in October 1959. Forward Reginald Blore made his only senior reds appearance in this game.
Also bidding farewell
Inside-forward Alan Banks made his eighth and final reds appearance in our 3-1 defeat in May 1961, when Alan A'Court grabbed our consolation. This was our final game of a season in which we finished third in the Second Division.
Forward Jack Balmer played his 300th reds game in our 3-2 win in February 1951 as we came back from two goals down. Cyril Done, Bill Jones and Billy Liddell struck our goals in what was our 2,000th first-class fixture. Winger Tommy Robertson made his hundredth consecutive reds appearance in September 1901, as we lost 1-0.
Most recent defeat
Our most recent defeat to the Potters in all competitions came at the Victoria Ground in April 1984 when we went down 2-0, one of just four League defeats we suffered as we clinched a treble of League titles that season.
Our biggest ever League win at the Victoria Ground was a 5-1 success in March 1982. Five different scorers bagged our goals, with Terry McDermott, Kenny Dalglish, Graeme Souness, Sammy Lee and Ronnie Whelan all on target.
Our biggest ever defeat to Stoke came back in February 1897 when George Allan equalised before half time, though we went on to suffer a 6-1 thumping in terrible conditions, with the home side also having a goal disallowed late on.
Our last visit to the Potteries before they changed their name from the simpler Stoke was in April 1923, when we held them to a goalless draw.
We lost 2-1 in our final game of the season in May 1936 as Stoke City secured their joint highest ever League placing, finishing fourth in the top flight. Fred Howe netted for the reds with centre-half Tom ‘Tiny' Bradshaw putting through his own net.