One of Everton’s all-time greats, when goalkeeper Ted Sagar took to the field against Plymouth Argyle on 15th November 1952 he became the oldest player to have represented the club, being 42 years 281 days old. When he retired the following year he held the record for the most league appearances for the blues with 463 games in a career that ran from 1929 to 1953. He still retains the record as the oldest player to play for Everton, although Neville Southall surpassed his league appearances record, with 578 games. Sagar did, however, lose six seasons of his career to the Second World War.
He was born in Brodsworth near Doncaster, Yorkshire on 7th February 1910. His father, a miner, was killed in the First World War, leaving his mother to bring up five young children. Leaving school aged 13 he became a miner, working for three years at Brodsworth Colliery. He joined Everton as an apprentice in 1929, signed from the local team Thorne Colliery and within a year had made his first team debut. From then on he was more or less an automatic first choice, winning two championship medals (1931-32, 1938-39) and an FA Cup winners medal (1933). He won 4 international caps for England in 1935-36 and also played for a Northern Ireland team during the war years. Sagar was in the army during the war with the Royal Corps of Signals, serving in Syria and India.
When Sagar came to Everton he was living in lodgings and started ‘going out’ with a young Liverpool girl, Dolly Evans. Dolly’s father, who worked on the gate at Goodison Park, was a was so impressed by the likeable Sagar that he invited him to lodge in the Evans household at 15 Chirkdale Street L4 (now demolished). His relationship with Dolly blossomed and they married on May 8th 1932 at St Lawrence’s Church in Walton. Their first home was at 94 East Lancashire Road L11, moving in 1935 to 10 Allendale Avenue L9 where they lived until Ted retired in 1953.
Like many ex-professional footballers at the time Sagar became a publican, his first hostelry being the Chepstow Castle at 109 County Road L4, still a familiar sight to many Evertonians making their way to the match. He moved on to the Blue Anchor Inn at Aintree near the racecourse and after retirement he and Dolly moved into a bungalow in Altway, Aintree, his home until he died on 16th October 1986.
Ted and Dolly Sagar's first home after their marriage in 1932
The Sagar home from 1935 to his retirement in 1953.
Ted Sagar's first pub on County Road near to Goodison Park.
Ted Sagar was the licensee of the Blue Anchor Inn for many years.
There are many references to Ted Sagar's football career on the internet but for an insight into his life the interview with him detailed on the efcheritagesociety website is well worth reading. In the excellent book by Becky Tallentire, Real Footballers' Wives, there is a very revealing narrative by Dolly Sagar about their life together, this can be viewed on the toffeeweb site.
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