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 Venue: Reebok Stadium, Bolton Premiership  Sunday 15 May 2005; 3:00pm
 Jaidi (53')
 Davies (61')
 Giannakopoulos (66')
 N'Gotty (sent off:45')
Half Time: 0-1

  Cahill (9')
 Carsley (63')

 Attendance: 27,701 (Fixture 38) Referee: Neale Barry

Match Summary

Tim Cahill: injured but expected to play through the pain barrier one last time

Jamie McFadden got a start, with Marcus Bent nowhere to be seen for the final game of the season.

Tim Cahill popped up in his own inimitable fashion to open the scoring after just nine minutes.  Lee Carsley played the ball in to him and he scored with a superb overhead kick.

Minutes later it could have been two but for a superb save by Jaaskelainen off a fantastic Kevin Kilbane shot.

Diouf's name went in the book after 17 mins for dissent, and he was followed on 28 minutes by Kevin Davies for a late challenge on Kilbane.

Tim Cahill managed to get into the fray again just before half-time, with N'Gotty drawing a straight red after slapping our wonderful little Aussie on the head!  Cahill went in the book as well, presumably for incitement!

But it just seemed to fire up the Trotters, with Jaidi and then Davies netting for them as Everton stuttered.  Yet Lee Carsley fired in from 18 yards off an Arteta corner to level things again just after Davies had put 10-man Bolton ahead!  What a ding-dong match!

And down at the other end, Giannakopoulos put them ahead again on 66 mins.  With 10 mins left, the last throw of the dice for David Moyes was to bring on James Vaughan for Tony Hibbert.  Then, Lee Carsley was stretchered off in serious pain on 86 mins after twisting his knee, but fears of serious cruciate ligament damage were later found to be wide of the mark.

Everton struggled to exert their numerical advantage and end the season on a high but it was not to be.  Still, fourth place secured and entry to the third qualifying round of the European Champions' League next season!

Match Preview

Well, now they really will be playing for professional pride.

David Moyes says his team has nothing to prove, while Steve Watson admits the players probably needed the kick up the backside they received courtesy of Arsenal in Wednesday's humiliating 7-0 drubbing and therefore have everything to prove.

Whether they feel they have anything to prove or not, let's hope they at least feel some debt towards the fans who have endured ridicule during a week when they should have been crowing from the rooftops about the Blues' unexpected but wholly welcome qualification for the Champions League.

It should be remembered, however, that we have the players to thank for the fact that this trip to Bolton, which we feared we might have to win to stay up when the fixture list was first published, is entirely meaningless... unless, of course, you are counting on results going in such a way on Sunday that Liverpool end up an ignominious seventh!

Moyes has some injury concerns ahead of this weekend's end-of-season encounter with the team that at one stage threatened to unseat the Blues from fourth place coming down the final straight.  Mikel Arteta aggravated his troublesome ankle at Highbury and had to be substituted midway through the second half; he is unlikely to start.

James Beattie was also, we're led to believe, removed from the fray at Highbury because of injury, but with rumours circulating that both he and Moyes (along with just a few tens of thousands of Evertonians) feel his £6M move from Southampton was a mistake, you're left to wonder if he was substituted for entirely different reasons...

Tim Cahill missed the Highbury debacle with a back injury but a newspaper report in the Echo on Friday detailing how he has played through two injuries this season to support the charge to Europe suggests that he will play through the pain barrier once more so that he can round off what has been a hugely successful one for him personally.

James Vaughan is back from international duty with the England U-17s and the untried Guillaume Plessis is another option that Moyes might try depending on how he approaches this weekend's game.  Richard Wright and James McFadden may also start successive games.

Pride really is at stake against Bolton who have qualified for the Uefa Cup for the first time this season using resources similarly slim to those at Moyes's disposal.  Lose, and Everton will have lost exactly half their league matches since the turn of the year and would finish the campaign with a negative goal difference.  Win, and they finish at least six points clear of Liverpool and will have signed off this magnificent season in style.

Lyndon Lloyd


Lyndon Lloyd

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BOLTON (4-4-2)
  NGotty -45'
  Stelios (68' Nolan)
  Davies -28'
  Hierro (67' Candela)
  Diouf -17'
  Ben Haim
  Subs not used
  Vaz Te

EVERTON (4-4-2)
  Hibbert (80' Vaughan)
  Carsley [injured: 86']
  Arteta (71' Stubbs)
  Cahill -45' (58' Osman)
Subs not used
  Li Tie (injured)
  Beattie (injured)
  Bent (injured)

Premiership Scores
Sunday 15 May 2005
Birmingham 1-0 Arsenal
Bolton 3-2 Everton
Charlton 2-2 C Palace
Fulham 6-0 Norwich
Liverpool 2-1 Aston Villa
Man City 1-0 Middlesbro'
Newcastle 1-1 Chelsea
So'hampton 1-2 Man United
Tottenham 0-0 Blackburn
West Brom 2-0 Portsmouth

Premiership Table
Pos Team Pts
1 Chelsea 95
2 Arsenal 83
3 Man Utd 77
4 Everton 61
5 Liverpool 58
6 Bolton 58
7 Middlesbrough 55
8 Man City 52
9 Tottenham 52
10 Aston Villa 47
11 Charlton 46
12 Birmingham 45
13 Fulham 44
14 Newcastle 44
15 Blackburn 42
16 Portsmouth 39
17 West Brom 34
18 Palace 33
19 Norwich 33
20 Southampton 32
After 15 May 2005
Click for final table


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