The incendiary clash which spawned the label ‘Dirty Leeds’

“THE most stupid, appalling, disgusting, and disgraceful exhibition of football, possibly in the history of the game.”

Leeds Uniteds Johnny Giles was involved in a fourth-minute clash with Sandy Brown which led to the Everton mans dismissal.

So said David Coleman about the 1962 World Cup clash between Italy and Chile, a fixture that has long since passed into football folklore as a truly brutal affair.

What a shame, therefore, that the legendary BBC commentator and the TV cameras were not also at Goodison Park a couple of years later.

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It would have been fascinating to hear Coleman’s thoughts on the afternoon when Leeds United and Everton went toe-to-toe in such a savage fashion that the referee was forced to take both teams off the pitch to cool down.

Never before had a match official in this country been forced into such an extreme act and the condemnation that followed in both the press and from the football authorities was swift and scathing.

With good reason, too, as on November 7, 1964 the old First Division witnessed arguably the most ferocious and ill-tempered contest in its then near-eight decade history.

The tone was set in the opening seconds as Billy Bremner floored Everton centre forward Fred Pickering.

Moments later, Jack Charlton suffered an identical fate in retribution and the battle lines had been drawn.

Just four minutes had been played when the game’s true flashpoint arrived via Johnny Giles and Sandy Brown jumping into a tackle.

Brown, incensed by what he saw as the undue vigour of the Irishman’s challenge, lashed out and was sent off.

Any hopes this dismissal might bring some calm to proceedings were quickly dispelled as the challenges became ever more ferocious and, eventually, referee Roger Stokes had seen enough.

Both teams were ordered from the field with a few minutes of the first half remaining, a first for English football.

Bremner was then confronted by an irate home fan as he made his way off and for a time it was not clear if the game had been abandoned or not.

After 10 minutes, though, play resumed and Leeds, leading 1-0 through Willie Bell’s goal, held on amid more toe-curling tackles and unrestricted thuggery to claim victory.

What Jan Vertongen, lampooned for the manner in which he theatrically fell to the ground after a slight kick from Hull City’s Gaston Ramirez on Sunday, would have made of it can only be guessed.

Castigation followed for Leeds and Everton, ranging from press editorials about “disgusting behaviour” and League president Joe Richards demanding: “Something must be done.”

A month later, the FA disciplinary panel met and decreed that Brown be suspended for two weeks and Everton be punished for the behaviour of their fans, who after the early dismissal had pelted the visiting players with missiles.

Don Revie’s team, meanwhile, escaped punishment but the tag ‘Dirty Leeds’ had been born.