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 FA Premiership (22); Goodison Park, Liverpool; Wednesday 1 January 2003; 3:00pm
  Watson (6')
Radzinski (92')
Attendance: 40,163
Halftime: 0-0

Anelka (33')
Foe (81')

Referee: Andy D'Urso (15' Alan Wiley)

Match Summary

Over 300 million Chinese people were expected to tune in their televisions to today's game to watch Everton midfielder Li Tie and City defender Sun Jihai.  Kevin Campbell passed a late fitness test on his injured ankle started up front with Wayne Rooney, Kevin McLeod making a very rare appearance on the bench.

Everton took the lead after six minutes following a clever through-ball from Rooney.  He split the offside trap and released Watson, who drilled a shot beyond the stranded Peter Schmeichel.  It was just the start Everton needed after successive draws against Bolton and Birmingham.

Referee Andy D'Urso became the game's first casualty after 15 minutes.  He came off following treatment on a leg injury and was replaced by the fourth official Alan Wiley.

City tried to get back in the game with Nicolas Anelka and Wright-Phillips both looking dangerous.  City levelled it on 33 minutes when goalkeeper Richard Wright spilled a floated cross by Ali Benarbia from the byline.  Everton nemesis Nicolas Anelka was on hand to knock the ball in to silence Goodison Park.

Rooney, however, skipped away from Richard Dunne, only for Schmeichel to race off his line and avert the danger.  Then Rooney headed wide of the target following a corner from the right by Watson.

Moyes was forced to make some changes at half-time, with Carsley coming on for the injured Yobo, and Radzinski replacing the Campbell, probably in an effort to protect his ankle.  Then, 10 mins later, Moyes replaced Gravesen with Gemmill, just after the Mad Dog wasted another opportunity with a trade-mark shot high and wide.

Rooney picked up his fifth yellow card of the season after a foul on Marc-Vivien Foe, extending his impending ban to four games...

Everton really had few ideas during the second half, and the warning signs were there on every City attack as Everton laboured to get into the game.

Then, with 9 mins left, poor Everton defending saw City breakthrough with Foe getting a header floating in over Richard Wright.  Naysmith got a shoulder injury in the process and had to go off for treatment.

Sun Jihai then brought down Gemmill on the edge of the area but the free kick was wasted in a move sadly symbolic of Everton's lack of invention.  A late corner gave Everton hope but Watson's header was not good enough.

Everton rallied during the 4 minutes of added time, with free kicks and corners giving them more than one opportunity to score, and finally the ball came through from Steve Watson and Radzinski scored a superb goal to rescue a point and a hell of a lot of pride for Everton.

Tomasz Radzinski:  Forced to sit out the first half, Radz becomes the last-minute hero

Everton v Man City:
Prior League Games
 Everton 35
 Man City 15
 Draws 19
 Everton 3
 Man City 1
 Draws 1
 Last Time:

Everton 3-1 Man City

BBC Match Preview
Electronic Telegraph

Premiership Scores
Wednesday 1 Jan 2003
Man Utd 2-1 Sunderland
Arsenal 3-1 Chelsea
Southampton 1-0 Tottenham
Aston Villa 1-0 Bolton
Blackburn 1-0 Middlesbro
Charlton P-P West Ham
Everton 1-2 Man City
Fulham P-P West Brom
Leeds 2-0 Birmingham
Newcastle 1-0 Liverpool

Match Facts
 Everton   (4-4-2)
 Blue shirts, white shirts, blue socks
 Manchester City    (4-4-2)
White shirts with sash, black shorts, black socks
Yobo (46' Carsley)
Weir (c)
Li Tie
Gravesen (56' Gemmill)
Campbell (46' Radzinski)

Subs not used:
Baardsen, McLeod

Yellow Cards: Rooney (58')

Red Cards: �


(Suspended:) Unsworth
(Injured:) Ferguson, Gerrard, Hibbert, Linderoth, Rodrigo, Simonsen, Watson
(On leave:) Wei Feng
(On Loan): Nyarko, Osman, Pilkington
Bernarbia (c)
Jihai Sun
Anelka (81' Huckerby)

Subs not used:
Wiekens, Goater, Ritchie

Yellow Cards: Jensen (34')
 Horlock (90')

Red Cards: �
Match Reports

Everton Web Sites
ToffeeWeb Match Summary Match Report
When Skies Are Grey Match Report
Blue Kipper Match Report
Everton Fans' Reports
Paul Gregory We are not playing well
Richard Marland Tired and Wearisome
Links to Other Media Reports
Electronic Telegraph Match Report
BBC Sport Match Report
4 the Game Match Report
Sky Sports Match Report
Sporting Life Match Report
SoccerNet Match Report
The Guardian Match Report
The Independent Match Report
Liverpool Echo Match Report
Daily Post Match Report
Premiership Table
Pos Team Pts
1 Arsenal 46
2 Man Utd 41
3 Chelsea 38
4 Newcastle 38
5 Everton 36
6 Southampton 35
7 Liverpool 34
8 Blackburn 32
9 Tottenham 32
10 Man City 31
11 Leeds 30
12 Middlesbrough 29
13 Charlton 29
14 Aston Villa 28
15 Birmingham 25
16 Fulham 23
17 Bolton 19
18 Sunderland 18
19 West Brom 16
20 West Ham 16

After 1 Jan 2003

Match Preview

David Moyes faces the challenge of getting the surprise team of the season so far back to winning ways against unpredictable Manchester City following three successive draws and a worrying dearth of goals.

Since the 2-1 win over Arsenal, the Blues have managed to score more than one goal in a league game just once, that coming in the 2-1 win over Blackburn, and a lack of inspiration in the midfield means that goals are a precious commodity for Everton these days.

Moyes may claim that his side was unfortunate not to come away with all three points from Saturday's encounter with Bolton � with two efforts cleared off the line and Rooney seeing a shot come back off the crossbar.  He may get some sympathy � but it is clear that the team is not the fluid attacking unit it was earlier in the season.

With just three league goals since the beginning of October, the seemingly rejuvenated Kevin Campbell is an indication of the attacking problems currently hindering the Blues.  Having to drop deep to claim the increasing long balls from defence, he isn't where he needs to be when it counts � the six-yard box.

Tomasz Radzinski, however, is managing to score just regularly enough and Rooney's all-round contribution means he is the main attacking threat � which is not surprising given his talent � but the fact that a 17 year-old is our main hope is still worrying.

Suspensions are now starting to bite with a vengeance, and perhaps it is the absence of the once much-maligned David Unsworth that has contributed to a lack of vision going forward?  Although many of his long punts seem wayward, it could be that Unsworth's desire to advance the game into the opponents territory is one of the factors Moyes's Boys are currently missing.

Moyes will hope that losing 4th place to Newcastle and the fact that second place in the table is just three points away will be motivation enough for his stalled outfit to overcome Kevin Keegan's City.  They will be without Eyal Berkovic, who is out with a groin strain.  Either Shaun Wright-Phillips and Jihai Sun will replace Berkovic, with the Chinese wing-back most likely to get the nod.

Rooney is likely to start alongside Campbell based on his performance against Bolton (if SuperKev's ankle allows him to play) and Radzinski will probably have to settle for a place on the bench, although it would be nice to see the two "R"s start together for a change.

In fact, injuries notwithstanding, Moyes will probably field the same team that started the Bolton game, which means Yobo at right back and Li Tie in midfield, setting up the much anticipated Chinese taster for the odd million or so who will be keenly watching this encounter in the People's Republic.

We are NOT playing well

Absolute turgid dross.  Abysmal performance � we didn�t deserve anything from that.  I can honestly say that we played better football under Walter Smith than what I�ve seen from the past five or six games.  We seem to have two game plans� the long ball and the ball over the top � neither work, especially against three crock centre backs.  There is no creativity or imagination whatsoever.

We didn't really deserve anything from that so a point is a good return from that point of view. My worry is that we are going to struggle in the second half of the season because we lack any sense of direction in midfield.  A decent team would have sown the game up, or at least added a second, within the first 25 minutes after going ahead, because for that part of the game City were dreadful.  Instead, we took our foot of the gas, with not one midfielder showing any sort of drive or commitment.  The amount of space given to the likes of Bernabia, Foe and Wright-Phillips was absolutely criminal.

You sensed that City would draw level and they did. We started the second half a bit brighter but then stood off them and allowed them to dominate AGAIN.  If your midfield can't string a decent set of passes together and are reluctant to make challenges, you are asking for trouble and that's exactly what happened.  Radz pops up for the equaliser and gets us out of jail but that should not disguise the fact that we were very poor again today.

Yes we should be happy in our league position but if we continue to play like that we�ll be midtable by the end of the month.

  • Richard Wright - made another silly mistake, yet Gary Naysmith standing in front of him hardly helped him. A few dodgy moments and absolutely brainless kicking � to Carsley EVERY time. (4)
  • Steve Watson � A few good runs and won a fair few headers. Took his goal well. Got caught out of position though on numerous occasions. (6)
  • Davie Weir � Average game, made a few silly errors of judgement. (5)
  • Alan Stubbs � Average, passing off key at times though (5)
  • Joseph Yobo � Went off injured, did little. (5)
  • Gary Naysmith � Plenty of enthusiasm but just lacks the quality to beat a man and put a decent cross in. (5)
  • Thomas Gravesen � Absolutely woeful AGAIN. Couldn�t pick a pass. Kept losing the ball. Made silly fouls. Didn�t win one tackle. Didn�t help the attack or defence. Should be dropped. (2)
  • Mark Pembridge � Ran around, did nothing special, put his foot in. Created little. (5)
  • Li Tie � Didn�t run the midfield like he should have. Had a better game than he did on Saturday. Made some sloppy passes. (6)
  • Kevin Campbell � Another poor display. I assume he�s injured. (4)
  • Wayne Rooney � Looked as if he was hungover. Kept going for water every time there was a stoppage. Wasn�t given any service or help. (5)
  • Tomasz Radzinski � The ball was constantly booted to his head and he had to keep going out wide to pick up the ball. Did okay. Took his goal well. (6.5)
  • Scott Gemmill � The only player to keep the ball on the deck it seemed. Never got involved enough though. (5.5)
  • Lee Carsley � Needs to get down the flank more but did as well as anyone else for us. (6)

Davie Moyes needs to sort it out and I think he will. He�ll be disappointed and rightly so. We are not playing well and we�re playing some of the worst football that I�ve seen in a good while. We haven�t scored more than two goals in a Premiership game so far and we�re creating very few chances....

Paul Gregory

Tired and wearisome

Originally I thought that the annual Marland family trip to Dublin would put paid to my attendance at this game.  But, having to travel back on New Year's Day, I discovered that there was a boat out of Dun Laoghaire (apologies to Colm if I've spelt that wrong) at 11:10, arriving in Holyhead at 12:50.  With Liverpool a tantalising 2 hour-ish drive away, the game was suddenly back on for me.

I was actually close to the ground at about 2:30 but I had to return home to unpack a car laden with Chrissie presents and to get my ticket which had been loaned to a mate.  So it was that I was running down Gwladys Street at about 3:05, listening to the match on my mini-radio (guess what I got for Christmas) when, as I passed the first turnstyles, Steve Watson scored!!  Bastard!!!  Couldn't he have waited just two more minutes?

I took my seat as the hub-bub died down � I even missed all the replays on the big screen � to be told I'd missed a cracking goal.  Oh well, with an early goal surely we'd settle down and play a bit.  Not at all, it soon became apparent that that was as good as it was going to get, and I'd missed it.

What I got to see was a struggling side that looked tired and flat, and who gradually lost control of the game.  The City equaliser didn't come as any great surprise, even if it was another of those "avoidable" goals we seem so prone to giving away.  Initially we were caught off guard by a short corner routine (real schoolboy stuff) before Wright dropped the subsequent cross at Anelka's feet.

By half time we looked a little ragged.  Yobo was limping badly, not that he'd looked too secure up to that point anyway, and City seemed to have been able to out manoeuvre us in midfield and down the flanks with surprising ease.

Half time brought two changes � Carsley for Yobo and Radzinski for Campbell (I assume Campbell was injured, there was nothing noticeable but he did get clattered).  This all meant that Steve Watson was shunted back to right back.

The changes did nothing for our level of performance. In fact we were worse.  Defensively we were doing all right, but right across the middle we were struggling.  Li Tie gave the ball away more than he has all year, and Pembo had his worst game in living memory.

After 15 minutes Gravesen was taken off and replaced by Gemmill; it could have been any one of the midfield four.  Gravesen didn't seem to be injured so it was a bit of a surprise to see us use our last substitute with half an hour still to play.

City continued to dominate and should really have scored after Li Tie gave the ball away just outside our box, Wright did well to come out smartly to deny the initial chance but Foe put the subsequent shot over when really he should have scored.

It came as no great surprise when City did finally go ahead.  We were opened up down our left and Foe converted the subsequent cross.  With time running out that looked like curtains.

The beauty of Everton now is that they never give up.  We were given 4 minutes of injury time; in all honesty we didn't look like doing anything and despite a few chances hadn't exerted any significant pressure.  Two minutes into injury time though Steve Watson punted a ball into the box and a speeding Tomasz Radzinski nipped in between Schmeichel and the centre back to nod the ball in.

There was still time left for City to be given a very fortuitous free kick on the edge of our box, fortunately they blazed it over, before the ref blew for time and we could celebrate a very fortunate point.

  • Wright 6 He does keep on making those gaffe's.  Everything else he did he was secure in but it was a bad mistake for the first goal.
  • Yobo 5 Seeing him at right back makes you appreciate what an excellent job Tony Hibbert was doing there.  Yobo did OK but looked like a centre back playing right back.
  • Naysmith 6 Did OK.
  • Stubbs 7 Continuing his run of good form.
  • Weir 7 Another who seems to be back after a little dip.
  • Watson 7 Took his goal well, apparently, and gave a decent, whole hearted performance.  I seem to recall many sniping at Watson's weight and fitness � the suggestion being that he, like Unsworth, wouldn't fit into the new Moyes philosophy.  But, like, Unsworth, he's a good, honest pro who I reckon would do anything asked of him, and that despite their footballing limitations Watson and Unsworth still have a big part to play at Everton.
  • Li Tie 6 Some good stuff, but never seen him give it away as often.
  • Gravesen 6 Typical Gravesen.  Some good stuff but never got to grips with things.
  • Pembridge 6 Just didn't seem to be at the races.  He always seemed to be getting caught out of position which is most unlike him, on numerous occasions he left Naysmith exposed.
  • Campbell 6 Was always going to struggle in front of today's midfield, his injury and a good clattering didn't help.
  • Rooney 6 His quietest performance yet, but still supplied the killer pass for the first goal, apparently.  He looks a tired player, in the long term his four-match ban may be a blessing in disguise.
  • Carsley 6 Did OK but isn't the kind of player to turn a poor team performance round.
  • Radzinski 7 Looked as sharp and energetic as ever and deserves credit for having the speed and awareness to nip in for his goal.
  • Gemmill 6 Did OK.

Team 6 This suddenly looks like a tired team. Comprehensively out passed but hung in there.

Man of the match � in a lacklustre performance only Stubbs, Weir and Watson rose above the ordinary.  In the end though Watson gets it for a typically whole-hearted performance.

Richard Marland

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