Dave Hickson

Dave Hickson was a robust centre forward who had played most of his football on Merseyside, had a brief spell with the Lilywhites.

Born at Salford on October 30th, 1929, Dave Hickson had began his professional football career with Everton having signed from Non League side, Ellesmere Port in May 1948. At this point he was still doing his National Service and as a result had to wait to September 1951 before he could make his first team debut. While doing his National Service he played a few games for the Cheshire Army Corps and while there had the honour of being coached by the great Everton player, Dixie Dean. Having eventually made his Everton debut, he soon became a regular in the first team, as well as becoming a favourite with the fans with his determination and physical approach to the game, coupled with his blond locks. Nicknamed the Cannonball Kid due to his powerful and fierce shooting, he formed an effective strike force for Everton with John Willie Parker, with him being the target man. One of the matches that Everton supporters remember of his was in the 5th Round of the F.A. Cup on February 14th, 1953. With the scores level at 1 all just before half time, Dave Hickson launched himself headlong in amongst the flying boots, coming out with a huge gash above his eyebrow. Having been lead down the tunnel, the Everton supporters felt that they would not see him again and their side would have to play the rest of the match with just 10 men. He had different ideas and returned to the pitch in the second half with a huge ovation from the Everton supporters, having had the wound stitched. Minutes later he scored the winning goal and later headed the ball against a post. In doing so, the wound re-opened and despite the referee and his captain telling him to go off, he refused. At the end of the match his blond hair was red and his shirt was the same colour.

In September 1955 he left Everton for Aston Villa, who paid a fee of £17,500 for him. He failed to settle in the Midlands, scoring just once in 12 league appearances, and as a result in November joined Huddersfield. There he spent two seasons (scoring 19 league goals) before jumping at the chance to re-join Everton, who paid £7,500 for his services in August 1957.  Back at Everton, he scored 32 league goals in 86 appearances before in November 1959 he caused uproar by signing for the old enemy, Liverpool. At that time Liverpool were struggling in the old second division and he became an instant hit by scoring twice on his debut. Shortly afterwards Liverpool had a new manager, Bill Shankley, who was impressed by Hickson's attitude. After two seasons, in which he had scored 36 league goals, Shankley allowed him to leave. He then joined Cambridge City.

Dave Hickson spell at Cambridge City was a short, He scored just three goals for the Lilywhites, the first being against Romford at Milton Road on August 19th, 1961, as he spent most of this time at Milton Road in the reserve team before in January, 1962 he returned to the Football League with Bury. The following August he signed for Tranmere Rovers and as a result is one of a very small band of players to have played for all three senior Merseyside clubs: Everton, Liverpool and Tranmere Rovers. He was to spend two seasons at Tranmere, scoring 21 league goals from 45 appearances before dropping into non league football with Ellesmere Port, Ballymena United, Winsford and Northwich Victoria.

He was to die at the age of 83 on July 8th, 2013, with his funeral service being held in Liverpool Cathedral.