The name they chose for this new institution was Everton Football Club – in honour of the Everton team which had just completed a triumphant tour of Argentina & Uruguay.
The founders were on the whole members of the merchant class which dominated Valparaiso society at the time and were, which was unusual for the time, nearly all 14 years of age.
If there was any doubt about the origins of the name this was dispelled in 1919 when David Foxley confirmed the link to the Merseyside Club during the celebrations for the Club’s 10th anniversary.
Further confirmation, if it were needed, of the British link was provided at the onset of the Great War when two of the founding members, sailed “home” to Britain to enlist for “King & Country”. Tragically, both Frank Boundy and Malcolm Fraser were to die on the Somme in 1916.
Originally the club, was a compendium of various sporting disciplines, emphasizing athletics, swimming, badminton, gymnastics and basketball and football. Early games were arranged between clubs of a similar makeup until they joined the local amateur league in 1912.
This amateur period saw the Club rise to prominence in the national sporting arena, especially in athletics, where many national and international titles were won. By the mid-1920s the Club began to restructure itself more around the football branch and which resulted in them winning two Valparaiso First Division titles in 1928 and 1931.
These titles were won at a price, however, as the Club moved away from its amateur beginnings in search of glory on the pitch – a policy which led to many of the original founders leaving in protest. The 1930s were to see the Club turn professional winning titles including the 1928 and 1931. However, due to various institutional problems the club went into recess in 1933. By 1933 the Club had declared itself professional, in line with the other leading Chilean club but this was to prove disastrous as for the next decade Everton were to enter two periods of recession.
Everton de Via del Mar:
1943 the Club transferred its headquarters from the port to the nearby town of Via del Mar as a condition to entering the national professional league the following year. In its first season in the national championship results were poor with Everton finishing in last place out of twelve teams. However, the next few years saw the Club consolidate its position in the championship reaching fifth place in 1948 and seventh in 1949,
During the 1940s the Club established itself again as a serious institution. The new headquarters had been bought in Calle Viana and the stadium, El Tranque (today the Sausalito) was expanded and fitted with floodlights. At this time, the local casino agreed to donate 0. 03% of its entrance earnings which led to the team to being nicknamed “Los Ruleteros”.
In 1950 Everton became the first provincial club to take the national title (started in 1933) when before a 45,000 crowd in the National Stadium they defeated Union Española 1-0. The goal that day was scored by Rene Melendez – the greatest player ever to wear the “blue & gold” shirt.
In 1951, Everton finished 4th but repeated its title success in 1952 with two games to go. Despite a number of international victories in the early 1950s – most noticeably the 5-0 victory over Independiente of Argentina, the Club failed to reach any great heights for the rest of the decade.
The 1960s began well with a fourth place finish in the national championship just five points behind champions. They maintained their form until the mid 60s when the Club began to flirt with relegation.
The Club started the 70s with a creditable 6th finish but problems within the institution contributed to a poor finish in 1971 and, for the first time, relegation in 1972. They stayed down for two seasons winning promotion in 1974 as runners-up.
In 1975, Antonio Martinez took over as president of the Club and with the support of the Casino forged a team that would surprise the country by winning the title in 1976 in front of 75,000 supporters in the National Stadium in Santiago. As in 1950, the opposition was Unión Española who were defeated 3-1 in front of 50,000 travelling Ruleteros.
In 1977, Everton came close to repeating the title, however, and despite ending the season with five consecutive wins had to settle for runner-up just two points behind Unión Española. After early elimination from the continental tournament (Copa Libertadores) the team was dismantled and finished the decade in a mediocre 10th place.
The early 80s saw Antonio Bloise Cotroneo take charge of the Club (father of present President, Antonio Bloise Ramos). The Club were relegated again in 81 but returned as runners-up again the following year. In 1984 they achieved their only Copa Chile success defeating Universidad Católica 3-0 in the National Stadium. Everton struggled for the rest of the decade although they just missed out on the Copa Libertadores qualification in 1986.
The early 1990s saw many Chilean clubs in financial crisis, not least Everton. Most years saw the Club struggling to avoid the drop but this finally arrived in 1995. The Club spent the next 4 seasons in Primera B (second division) before returning in 1999, As in the top flight, the league was now divided into “Opening” and “Closing” seasons, with the winners of each tournament taking a promotion slot. In 1997 Everton finished second in each one, accumulating more points than any team in the division over the two but still failed to go up.
Everton stayed just one season in the First Division – they were relegated on the final day of the season at arch-rivals Santiago Wanderers. The 2001 season saw the Ruleteros finish 8th – their lowest ever finish since turning professional. A slight improvement to 4th the following year was followed by the Primer B Championship in 2003.
The following seasons saw Everton finishing well in the Championship, even qualifying for the final play-off tournaments. Despite progress on the pitch, the Club was still in financial difficulties which lead to the transformation of the Club into a Limited Company in 2006 – no longer C.D. Everton but Everton S.A.D.P. A number of managerial changes finally brought former player and National Team manager, Nelson Acosta back to the Club.
The Opening Championship saw the Ruleteros finish 5th and so qualifying for the play-off tournament. Things could not have started worse with a 0-3 home defeat in the first leg of the quarter final against Audax Italiano. However, in the second leg in Santiago Everton won by 4 -1 , thus passing to the semi-finals where they beat Universidad de Chile in the National Stadium 3-1 before drawing 1-1 at home. The final against Colo Colo saw the Ruleteros once again turn around a first leg two goal deficit by winning 3-0 in the Sausalito, thereby obtaining their fourth national title and qualifying for the Copa Libertadores for the second time in their history.
Directors & Players celebrating Championship:
The change around in the fortunes of the Club in the last 5 years has been incredible and a lot of the credit must go to the management both on and off the field. The fact that Nelson Acosta has been allowed the time to build a team over the last few years is unusual in South American terms where managers usually last as long as a Liverpool title challenge.
Everton lie 6th in the Championship as we enter the “World Cup” break. When they resume in July they will not just be thinking of regaining the Chilean title but also of a certain match a Goodison Park which will bring the story full circle.
1st Division: 1916-1933, 1936-37, 1943
3rd Division: 1912-16
Copa Chile: 1984