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Tommy Lawrence RIP

Very sorry to hear former Liverpool goalkeeper Tommy Lawrence had died aged 77.  He was a key member of Shankly's great 1960's team and his claim to fame was that he was the first sweeper-keeper.  Shankly encouraged him to come out of his box to tidy up opposition attacks which made a lot of sense as that team played a very high defensive line and could sometimes be caught square.  Not all fans rated him highly and Shankly was rumoured to want to replace him with Gordon Banks at one stage but that never happened.  My memory is of a reliable if rarely spectacular keeper who never let us down in big matches.  His best save that I remember was in the penultimate game of  the 1963-4 season at home to Arsenal when we needed to win to claim the title.  We raced into a 2-0 lead but then Ron Yeats handled in the box.  George Eastham stepped up and hit his shot into the corner but Tommy dived to his right showing an agility some suspected he lacked and made a brilliant stop.  Arsenal heads went down and we won the game 5-0.  I was right behind the Anfield Road goal and it was an absolutely brilliant save. Most of the members of that great team are in their late 70's or early 80's now so a loss comes as little surprise but it is always sad to lose one of your own and Tommy was someone for whom fans from that era will look back with affection.

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  • Unfortunately, I'm not old enough to have seen him play live but I have seen footage of 'The Flying Pig' in action and I've read numerous pieces about him. I've always found him a very endearing character, down to earth and honest. In fact, the flood of messages in the media today from those who played with him, or just got to know him, is testament to how well-liked he was. He won two league titles and an FA Cup, Liverpool's first in 1965, and that's a decent haul when you consider it was at the very beginning of the process that led to Liverpool becoming a European supergiant. Many non-footballing people will remember Tommy from the TV incident in which a reporter goes up to an elderly gentleman in the street and asks him whether he remembers the Liverpool vs Everton FA Cup match in 1967. The elderly gentleman replies, 'Yes, I played in it.' Of course, the elderly gentleman was Tommy Lawrence. RIP YNWA

  • It's always sad to hear about the passing of a liverpool legend but they leave fond memories behind.  Condolences to his family. RIP YNWA

  • Bit before my time but of course i've read about Tommy, Condolences to his family, RIP YNWA.

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