Everton U23s 1 - 2 Liverpool U23s
The young Blues celebrate winning the FA Premier League 2 trophy.
The ball would not run for David Unsworth's Under-23s tonight as they took on Liverpool before being crowned Champions of Premier League 2.
It promised to be a great celebration of the fantastic achievement by these young and superbly talented youngsters that have been assembled at Everton's USM Finch Farm, all the sweeter for the Guard of Honour their local rivals provided at the start, and award of the Premier League 2 trophy after the game.
Jonjoe Kenny, hot from his impressive 15-minute season debut for the first team against Swansea, captained the side, as he has done all season. Gethin Jones returnsed from a half-season loan spell at Barnsley to partner him in the backline. Mo Besic and Joe Williams featured in midfield, with in-form Bassala Sambou and Harry Charsley as the strikers.
On the bench, Calum Dyson also returned from a half-season loan, with Grimsby Town, where he was voted their Young Player of the Year. Anthony Evans has also been out on loan, with Morecambe.
The Reds took the lead after an error by Pennington, with just 6 minutes gone.
Dowell had a free-kick near the corner flag and looked to catch out the goalkeeper with a cheeky attempt. The Blues continued to press well but were not quite getting the run of the ball.
Bassala Smabou tried a spectacular overhead kick then Joe Williams fired goalward, forcing the save. Mo Besic did well to steal the ball and carry it forward, winning a dangerous free-kick that Kieran Dowell curled inches wide with the keeper scrambling.
Sambou works himself a yard on the edge of the area before letting fly and Liverpool goalkeeper reacted well to tip the ball around the post. But Besic went off replaced by David Henen, the Reds broke and drilled in a second goal far too easily.
There were big shouts for a penalty as Kenny went down in the corner of the penalty area under a challenge from Gomez but the referee waved play on, much to the frustration of the Blues skipper. David Unsworth then makes his second change of the evening with Dyson replacing Charsley.
On 75 minutes, any celebration was spoiled by a crazy pitch invasion, with 20 or 30 scallies running from the Gwladys Street end. That was followed by a terrible challenge by Williams on on Baningime, leading to some serious handbags but of course only a yellow card for it.
A bit of a scramble;d goal but it finally came after another great run and cross from Kenny, Calum Dyson bundling it over the line off a miskick or deflection.
David Henen seemed to be in with a chance before the end but tried to head it rather than let it fall and lost his footing: no penalty. Keeny trapped a great crossfield ball and then picked out Dyson at the far post but he headed just over.
Into added time and from a bounce-ball, Keiran Dowell lashed a fine shot that was finger-tipped around the post.
The final whistle went and the scallies returned for their little pitch invasion, much to the annoyance of the Goodison Park stewards and authorities before the pitch was eventually cleared to allow the presentation of the Premier League 2 trophy.
Everton: Hewelt; Kenny, Jones, Baningame, Feeney, Pennington, Dowell, Besic (57' Henen), Sambou, J Williams [Y:78'] (87' Evans), Charsley (63' Dyson).
Subs not Used: Gray, Foulds.
[For those who cannot attend in person, the match will be streamed live via the Everton website:
U23s Everton v Liverpool Streaming Live. There is a £3.99 payment required to ‘Home Is Where The Heart Is' charity and our Live Forum will be open. Note: Coverage in the UK is on a 15-minute delay.]
Season Record: ToffeeWeb U23s Page
Reader Comments (38)
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1 Posted 08/05/2017 at 18:40:20
Lovely to see Dyson & Evans on the bench.
Wish we could have seen Garbutt out there too. :/
2 Posted 08/05/2017 at 20:20:25
3 Posted 08/05/2017 at 20:23:28
Get shut and get Sheedy in. 😀
4 Posted 08/05/2017 at 20:25:51
This'll be 2 defeats against this crowd. Wtf is it with us against them You couldn't make it up.
6 Posted 08/05/2017 at 20:57:01
I swear our first team would lose to the Liverpool Under-10s team.
7 Posted 08/05/2017 at 21:05:10
We showed some really good movement and one or two players look as if they could turn out to be good first team players Joe Williams and the Number 2 who I believe is Jonjoe Kenny are certainly ones to watch.
Anybody heard what is wrong with Liam Walsh? Apparently he arrived at the ground on crutches. Anyway the lads won the league, which just shows you don't have to beat the dark side in order to win stuff.
8 Posted 08/05/2017 at 21:06:07
9 Posted 08/05/2017 at 21:14:12
Well done, Unsy and the staff, and our talented young team coming through. Fuck those RedShites, I'd take a guess they would have preferred to lose tonight but ultimately win the league.
10 Posted 08/05/2017 at 21:19:22
At least these lads play for the shirt... the first team most I'd send to a seminary /Alcatraz, to learn about themselves and what it means to play for EFC. Deffo Jonjoe Kenny should be given a higher squad profile next season, he's a natural back and looks like he can go a long way.
A ray of hope and some pride from a difficult season, let's hope the sweep starts on Friday.
Very well done, EFC U23s, you can all be proud of your achievement, and thanks for some great entertainment this season.
11 Posted 08/05/2017 at 21:25:15
12 Posted 08/05/2017 at 21:35:05
They were much more roughhouse than us and as Patrick says we need to lean a little more towards the dark side.
When that tackle went in on Baningame, the Liverpool players were on the refs shoulder claiming he made the most of it by jumping in the air and questioned why he was not booking an Everton player, which he then promptly did.
Our back 4 were standing off whereas their backline was in your face.
13 Posted 08/05/2017 at 21:36:22
I'd rather lose those battles but win the war. Not that we've won many wars either recently but small steps and all that.
Well done, lads.
14 Posted 08/05/2017 at 22:01:18
Anyway, a lovely occasion and I don't care about the result.
15 Posted 08/05/2017 at 22:20:16
I think we should change our kit to all white to look like Real Madrid, it may make the RedShite more apprehensive playing us knowing we look like a team that has won more European Cups than them.
To hell with tradition, it gets you nowhere. For fuck's sake even the blue team hardly ever beats the red on Bargain Hunt either.
16 Posted 08/05/2017 at 22:26:41
The RS showed all the grace and charm I have come to expect from them over 50 years no guard of honour, at the ref all the time, one awful foul, and plenty of time-wasting.
They've got some good players though, I was very impressed with their No 10 sorry, don't know his name, a tall, strong lad who played as a forward dropping deep. He didn't put a foot wrong.
I was a little disappointed by our lads, although they showed spirit. There was a lack of pace and power. Williams has a bit of attitude, but I thought only Jonjoe Kenny stood out.
However, many congratulations to the U23 team, it was great to see an Everton player lift a trophy.
17 Posted 08/05/2017 at 22:29:45
18 Posted 08/05/2017 at 22:32:04
Kenny was another who urged his team on and put some great passes into the box that might have been utilised better.
Joe Williams was always in the thick of it and had a good game.
Liverpool looked physically a much bigger team than Everton and knew how to use their weight, not always legitimately, but to be honest they played as a team more than Everton who tried to progress with individual attempts too much instead of bringing players into the game that were available.
Just one small moan, I was in the Bullens Road side of the ground where the bulk of the crowd where but they did the presentation facing the Main Stand watched by a thousand fans, they never even used the screens to show who was being presented with what.
I waited and watched it all as the players eventually left the rostrum and walked around with the trophy, not a bad night and, although the result didn't count at the end, at the end of the night it was frustrating to be beat by bastards again.
19 Posted 08/05/2017 at 22:50:10
20 Posted 08/05/2017 at 22:55:11
21 Posted 08/05/2017 at 23:00:25
I must agree with Koeman: not many look ready for the first team but I was very impressed by Beni Baningime. He was cool, assured and could see a pass. Kenny we know about and Joe Williams had a decent game.
Overall, I thought we over elaborated and, of course, all the loose balls in the area dropped kindly for them.
Nice to find myself sitting next to fellow ToffeeWebber Ray Roche.
22 Posted 08/05/2017 at 23:02:23
We kept doing that thing of doing the hard work then a final ball would just...
To be honest, I thought Liverpool looked shite – we gave them one goal, their second was a good finish, but overall, thought they looked very... um... 'lumpy.'
Physically strong/big but... not much else.
Anyway, enjoyed the evening – nice weather, went with two good blue mates, had a couple of beers, hot dog, lift home.
Congratulations to the champions and up the Toffees!
Oh and Beni Baningime?
Remember the name!
23 Posted 08/05/2017 at 23:49:37
Why no guard of honour?
Why no penalties?
Why only a yellow for a typically bad RS tackle?
Why no big screens?
Why can't we beat them?
Why run out of hot dogs and sausage rolls at a kids' party?
Well done, Under-23s, on your great achievement!
24 Posted 09/05/2017 at 01:00:26
25 Posted 09/05/2017 at 01:59:18
A monumental effort from Unsworth and his boys this season. You don't finish top of the pile by accident.
It's great to think that even the ones who don't go to the very top will still have memories to cherish.
Made up for all concerned.
26 Posted 09/05/2017 at 02:37:42
27 Posted 09/05/2017 at 06:36:43
Until someone gets this at Goodison Park, nothing will change.
28 Posted 09/05/2017 at 07:40:36
As for the result, bloody typical but we all sort of knew didn't we? That's the problem now its engrained in all of us to expect it against the RedShite.
29 Posted 09/05/2017 at 07:41:44
Dowell has loads of ability but imo he won't make it to the Premier League unless he works harder when he hasn't got it and supports the man with the ball by making a run. He wants everything to come to him.
Beni Baningime and Jonjoe Kenny were excellent. When you watch a game like that, it makes you appreciate how good Tom Davies is and factor in he is younger than most on that pitch last night.
30 Posted 09/05/2017 at 08:10:10
I was very impressed with Baningime and though Kenny looks like he could slot straight in to the first team. He was always getting forward behind their back line and his crosses were pretty dangerous too.
Joe Williams did himself no harm with a good performance as did Gethin Jones. The RS? They are all we've come to expect from that shower. Disrespectful, ungracious, cheating, con artists. And they are their good points.
Bill Watson, it was a pleasure to meet you, a fellow Blue with a good knowledge of the game. Enjoyed our chat. Bloody cold up there though, wasn't it?
31 Posted 09/05/2017 at 08:10:50
I sat in the main stand and was appalled by some of the comments from fans who didn't even know who they were slagging off, saying it was all too familiar. In the end I had to remind one to two that what wasn't familiar is that these nameless players had actually won the league. Liverpool were very physical and didn't have much finesse at all, I thought their best player was the goalie.
Don't know who mentioned it further up the thread about changing our colours to white because apparently Blue is unlucky? Premier League Champions elect- Chelsea, last year Leicester, year before Man City, FFS Using that logic Liverpool should change their kit to Blue.
Congratulations to all the players I actually think we have at least three players (maybe four) who could cut it in the Premier League. It is a shame Liam Walsh didn't play he is an excellent player.
32 Posted 09/05/2017 at 08:21:50
So there'll be no youth versus Watford and Arsenal then. The team picks itself, undeserved as it is.
33 Posted 09/05/2017 at 09:00:40
Liam: all the young players will be available for the Watford game: they don't fly out to Japan until Monday.
34 Posted 09/05/2017 at 09:16:43
As an example, I could give plenty, Everton youths, with Rooney in the team, played at home in the final of the FA Youth Cup, we got hammered 4-1 in front of a sizeable crowd; in the return leg we won 1-0, it's down to pressure.
As I said before it is something all young players have to get used to and it doesn't affect every player, Wayne Rooney playing in his first Derby game at Anfield was bayed at when running down the line, warming up to come on as a sub; didn't phase him at all... water off a duck's back. Not many are like that, it's sink or swim.
35 Posted 09/05/2017 at 09:19:56
When the first team win the league, that too will be done in style. It's quality that wins you the league, not gamesmanship.
If Everton ever resorted to the kind of tactics adopted by some other teams, I would simply walk away, and never watch Everton again.
36 Posted 09/05/2017 at 09:35:07
I think they mugged us really. Apart from a 10 minutes spell just after they scored their fortuitous first goal, the young Blues bossed the game. Liverpool's more direct approach meant they opened the back line up too often and probably had the better direct chances.
But, there are some lovely footballers in that young Everton team, right out of the classic Everton mould, and I only hope they stay on course with their development and blossom into the stars they and we deserve them to become.
Very impressed with Kenny. He plays very positively, has really great ball control, and always wanted the ball and was urging his mates on. A classic modern wing back in the making. Give him a start on Friday night, Ronnie. He deserves it.
37 Posted 09/05/2017 at 12:59:44
You made a good point there about the Liverpool line up. There was bags of experience and players who have had first team exposure. They even played two lads Grujic and Gomez who cost millions. They were entitled to do that but it should be noted. We had U23s like Davies, Holgate, Lookman also Connolly who didn't play.
I thought we showed plenty of graft but a little guile was missing and the ball just didn't run kindly around their box. Great effort though and the crowd looked sizeable. Extremely proud that they won the league and pleased for Unsworth.
Kenny needs more minutes or a loan to the championship. With Coleman missing it may be better to keep him and introduce him more. We've got Europa League and other Cups to bring him on. Looks a decent prospect.
Beni Baningime had a very good game. Bit like a mini Idrissa Gueye.
Joe Williams was decent but his progress is behind Davies which may not help him.
I was a bit disappointed by Kieran Dowell. He put himself about a bit more than normal but was a bit wasteful at times. I feel he should be shining more at this level now if he wants to kick on to the first team. Still some hope there but next season is pivotal. He hasn't done a loan away yet like Kenny and Pennington. Maybe that would be a good career development move.
38 Posted 09/05/2017 at 13:50:32
Of course we can win a derby the U18s won 4-1 this season which bodes well for the Kopites' new coach.
40 Posted 10/05/2017 at 10:11:49
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