England Football Online
Results 1950-1955                          Page Last Updated 7 December 2021


254 vs. Portugal
previous match (10 days)
263 vs. Argentina

next match (137 days)
265 vs. France

297 vs. Portugal

Saturday, 19 May 1951
Festival of Britain Celebration Match

 5 Portugal 2
originally scheduled for 16 May 1951
the England vs. Belgium fixture was due to be played on this day.
Goodison Park, Goodison Road, Walton, Liverpool, Lancashire
Kick-off (BST): 3.00pm

Attendance: 52,686;
England kicked-off
[1-0] Bill Nicholson 1 0:16-30
 Liverpool Echo records sixteen seconds, FA Yearbook states 19.seconds, other media 30
 a 20-yard left-footed shot with his first touch into top corner, Stan Pearson headed on a Metcalfe pass

[2-1] Jackie Milburn 11

'put through by Stan Pearson, outpaced Felix and hit a low drive to the bottom corner'

[1-1] Patalino 2 1:20
Argus records fifteen seconds after
'A crossfield pass from Albano was taken to the line by Travacos and his centre headed into the goalmouth by David found Patalino ideally placed to shoot.'
12.0 Leslie Baker 12.30 Cricket 1.35 Dudley Savage 2.0 Band 2.45 Cricket 3.15 Orchestra
England v. Portugal
4.45 Cricket 5.0 Excerpts from 'Lights Out' 5.30 Jazz for Moderns 6.0 Cricket 6.45 Can I Help You?

[3-2] Tom Finney 75

'Finney took a throw in on near touchline, the ball went to Alf Ramsey, who pushed it back and Finney's left-foot centre swung straight into the goal.'
[4-2] Jackie Milburn 78
 'Hassall header booked for the net was blocked by Virgilio, Milburn nipped in and drove the ball fiercely'
[5-2] Harold Hassall 89
 'Tom Finney, with a mazy run and beautiful ball control baffled and beat off three challengers. He lured Ernesto from his goal and smartly crossed for Hassall to score'
[2-2] Albano 50-55
'Williams expected Ramsey to pass back. It came too late and Albano nipped in to score'
second-half live on the Radio Light Programme - Commentator: tbc
Officials England FIFA ruling on substitutes Portugal
Referee (black)
Ludovicus Andreas Maria Baert
47 (29 December 1903), Ghent, Belgium
The Continental ruling of allowing two substitutes to replace injured players prior to the 44th minute, and a goalkeeper at any time, is in place.
red flag                Linesmen              yellow flag
C. Gibson
Paulo de Oliveira
England Team


No official ranking system established;
ELO rating 4th
Colours: The 1949 home uniform - White collared jerseys, blue shorts, black socks with white tops.
18th, W 12 - D 1 - L 5 - F 53 - A 28.⁴³
Alf Ramsey
last, P 3 - W 2 - D 1 - L 0 - F 11 - A 6.³
Manager: Walter Winterbottom, 38 (31 March 1913), appointed as FA national director of coaching/team manager on 8 July 1946;
38th match, W 27 - D 4 - L 7 - F 121 - A 44.¹³⁹
trainer: Harry Cooke (Everton FC)
Team chosen by Selection Committee headed by Arthur Drewry, on 9 May 1951 following the Argentina match.
England Lineup
  Williams, Bert F. 31
108 days
31 January 1920 G Wolverhampton Wanderers FC 16 21ᵍᵃ
Ramsey, Alfred E. 31
117 days
22 January 1920 RB Tottenham Hotspur FC 14 0
3 Eckersley, William 25
307 days
16 July 1925 LB Blackburn Rovers FC 5 0
706 4
Nicholson, William E. 32
113 days
26 January 1919 RHB Tottenham Hotspur FC 1 1
twentieth Hotspur player to represent England only app 1951
5 Taylor, James G. 33
195 days
5 November 1917 CHB Fulham FC 2 0
final app 1951
6 Cockburn, Henry 29
247 days
14 September 1921 LHB Manchester United FC 12 0
Finney, Thomas 29
44 days
5 April 1922 OR Preston North End FC 32 20
the fifth player to reach this milestone
Pearson, Stanley C. 32
128 days
11 January 1919 IR Manchester United FC 6 3
Milburn, John E.T. 27
8 days
11 May 1924 CF Newcastle United FC 11 10
Hassall, Harold W. 22
76 days
4 March 1929 IL Huddersfield Town AFC 3 2
11 Metcalfe, Victor 29
105 days
3 February 1922 OL Huddersfield Town AFC 2 0
final app 1951
unused substitutes: Gil Merrick (Birmingham City FC), Ernie Taylor (Newcastle United FC) and Ray Barlow (West Bromwich Albion FC)
team notes: Again, Finney replaced original choice Blackpool FC's Stan Matthews' right-sided position, Metcalfe was drafted in from Netherlands, where he was on a club tour, into the vacant outside-left slot on Thursday, 17 May. Matthews was still suffering with the foot injury.
goalscoring records: Two players share the honour of being the top goalscorer for this season, Eddie Baily and Jackie Milburn, for the second time, both scoring three goals in four matches.
Prior to the match, England were set-up in Southport, making full use of the Haig Avenue ground for training purposes.
2-3-5 Williams -
Ramsey, Eckersley -
Nicholson, Taylor, Cockburn -
Finney, Pearson, Milburn, Hassall, Metcalfe.
Averages: Age 29 years 178 days Appearances/Goals 9.5 2.8
Portugal Team


No official ranking system established;
ELO rating 28th to 30th
Colours: Maroon jerseys, white shorts, black socks
Capt: Francisco Ferreira Manager: João Joaquim Tavares da Silva, 47 (29 November 1903),
team chosen on Thursday, 17 May 1951
Portugal Lineup
  do Oliveira, Ernesto Nogueira 29
295 days
28 July 1921 G Atlético Clube de Portugal 5 16ᵍᵃ
2 Marques Mendes, Virgílio 23
183 days
17 November 1927 RB FC do Porto 9 0
3 das Neves, Serafim 30
263 days
29 August 1920 LB CF Os Belenenses 15 0
4 Ribeiro Canário, Carlos Augusto 33
98 days
10 February 1918 RHB Sporting Club de Portugal 10 0
final app 1948-51
5 Assunção Antunes, Félix 28
156 days
14 December 1922 CHB Sport Lisboa e Benfica 10 0
6 Ferreira, Francisco 31
269 days
23 August 1919 LHB Sport Lisboa e Benfica 24 0
Patalino, injured off 36th min. 28
324 days
29 June 1922 OR CF O Elvas 3 2
Demétrio, Domingos Carrilho final app 1949-51
8 Barreto Travassos, José António 25
86 days
22 February 1926 IR Sporting Club de Portugal 19 4
Ben David, Henrique de Sena 24
165 days
5 December 1926
in Cape Verde
CF Atlético Clube de Portugal 4 3
10 do Amaral Caiado, Fernando Augusto 26
78 days
2 March 1925 IL Boavista FC 4 0
Narciso Pereira, Albano 28
149 days
21 December 1922 OL Sporting Club de Portugal 11 3
Portugal Substitutes
scoreline: England 2 Portugal 1
  Gomes, Carlos Martinho, on 36th min. for Patalino 24
213 days
18 October 1926 OR Atlético Clube de Portugal 2 0
final app 1951
result: England 5 Portugal 2
unused substitutes: not known
team notes: Patalino replaced Carlos Martinho at outside-right.
Some media states Virgílio was born in 1926, but the FPF state 1927.
Prior to this match, the Portuguese team were staying in New Brighton, and using the Goodison Park ground to train on.
2-3-5 Oliviero -
Virgílio, Serafim -
Canário, Félix, Ferreira -
(Carlos Martinho), Travassos, Ben David, Caiado, Albano.
Averages: Age 28 years 90 days Appearances/Goals 10.4 0.9
              Match Report by Mike Payne

England brought the Festival of Britain football programme to a close with a spectacular finish to a game evenly contested for 75 minutes.

Nearly 53,000 people packed into Goodison Park and they were soon on their feet cheering a first-minute goal for England. Only 19 seconds had gone on the stop-watch when a close passing movement straight from the kick-off enabled Henry Cockburn, Vic Metcalf and Stan Pearson to give Billy Nicholson a dream debut when he scored with a magnificent 18-yard shot with his first touch.

This would have knocked the stuffing out of most sides but within a minute Portugal drew level. A counter-thrust by Caiado, Travasos and David set up the chance for Patalino to shoot past Williams. It had been a remarkable opening and ten minutes later the dashing Jackie Milburn, who had a fine game, put England back in the lead with a swift low shot after receiving a pass from Pearson.

That lead lasted until just after half-time. Hesitancy between Alf Ramsey and Jim Taylor allowed Albano slip the ball past Bert Williams to once again level the scores. This really set the game alight and with the Portuguese tails well and truly up they began to ask severe questions of the English defence.

Then suddenly with 15 minutes left the England side changed completely. Gone was the tired and lethargic look. It was replaced by the much more normal look of the England team. They then proceeded to produce an appropriate festival of goals to end the match.

Tom Finney, in one of his most devastating moods, scored the decisive and killer goal in the 76th minute. It came with a superb swerving left-foot shot from the touch-line. It really was a match-winning goal and it finally broke the stubborn resistance of the brave Portuguese. The goals that followed from Milburn and Hassall were mere formalities and simply entertained the crowd still further. In the end the extra power of the English team finally saw off another continental challenge.

              Match Report by Norman Giller

For the only time in his career, Billy Wright was dropped because of loss of form. Bill Nicholson took over in the No 4 shirt, and had the distinction of scoring with his first kick in international football in what was to prove his only match for England. Portugal were a goal down in twenty seconds and level a minute later in a blistering start to the match. Jackie Milburn restored England's lead in the eleventh minute. Alf Ramsey, skippering the side for a third time, mishit a back pass that let Portugal in for a second equaliser soon after half-time. Tom Finney then took over and ran the Portuguese into such dizzy array that at the after-match banquet their entire team stood and toasted "Mr. Finney, the Master. He scored a magnificent solo goal, and then laid on goals for Milburn and Harold Hassall.

              Match Report as appears in the F.A. Yearbook 1951-52, page 25

In the last International of the season, played at Goodison Park, Everton, on, May 19th, England beat Portugal by 5 goals to 2. Up to a quarter of an hour from the end, the score was still level at 2-2, and once again a storming finish was required to give England victory.
The match started sensationally. Within 19 seconds, a finely co-ordinated movement between Cockburn, Metcalfe and Pearson straight from the kick-off gave Nicholson his opportunity to score a magnificent goal from 18 yards out. Such a blow might have taken the spirit out of many sides, but within a minute Patalino, taking advantage of a lightning move by Caiado, Travacos and David, had put Portugal level. Ten minutes later Milburn scored again for England, but the lead was needlessly thrown away shortly after half-time when Albano, taking advantage of a mistake by the English defence, slipped the ball past Williams.
Portugal now attacked strongly, and with clever ball control gave England some anxious moments. Then, with the end near, England suddenly found their form. Finney decided the issue with a brilliant left-foot shot from the touchline, and in a burst of inspiration Milburn and Hassall brought England's total of goals to five. England had finished the season with their unbeaten home record still intact.

              Source Notes

Original newspaper reports
  Rothman's Yearbooks
Mike Payne's England: The Complete Post-War Record

Norman Giller, Football Author