April to June 1997
With the threat of relegation gaining momentum, the ever-faithful Godison legend Dave Watson assumed the mantle abandoned by Joe Royle.
With only seven games left to avoid another period of demotion, Watson, already a central element of the team, threw his energies into managing a team only too familiar with defeat.
Watson’s dedication, enthusiasm, and fierce energy were successful off the pitch as well as on, and the win and three draws he guided the team to were enough to keep the team in the League for another season.
Not yet ready for the move into management, and with Howard Kendall returning yet again as manager, Watson gratefully returned to his real love: playing, which he did at Goodison for another three years.