clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The 1986 FA Cup Final: Liverpool v. Everton

Seven days after Liverpool took the 1985-86 league title by two points over Everton, the two sides faced off at Wembley in the FA Cup final to close out Kenny Dalglish's first year in charge after taking over from Joe Fagan. Though they had lately found success at Wembley in the League Cup, capturing four straight titles from 1981 through 1984, it would mark their first chance to win the FA Cup since Bob Paisley lost to Manchester United in 1977.

With one of the strongest ever Liverpool sides barred from Europe after the tragic events at Heysel the year before, the club was wholly focused on domestic silverware—and the result was only the third domestic double comprising the league title and FA Cup in England in the 20th century. Also of note when Liverpool lined up at Wembley that day was that it marked the first time in FA Cup history any side had had no English players in their starting eleven. Englishman Steve McMahon did make the bench for Liverpool as their one substitute, and with over half the squad coming from Scotland and Ireland it was hardly a group that would be considered especially foreign by Premier League standards, but at the time it was a quite noteworthy situation.

Though they had met two years previously in the League Cup final, it was the first time the two had met at Wembley in the FA Cup, and a strong opening half saw Everton head into the break with a lead thanks to Gary Lineker's 27th minute goal. When Liverpool began piling on pressure in the second half, though, it seemed as if it would only be a matter of time before their opponents would break. And in the 56th minute they finally did, as Denmark's Jan Molby sent the Welsh Ian Rush clear on goal to draw the sides level. Six minutes later, Molby set up Australian Craig Johnson to put Liverpool up for good, and in the closing minutes Rush latched onto a pass from Ireland's Ronnie Whelan for his second of the night to confirm victory.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Liverpool Offside Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of Liverpool FC news from Liverpool Offside