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COLUMNIST KEN BUCKLEY

From My Seat: Macclesfield Town

By Ken Buckley :  03/01/2009 :  Comments (0) :
Back from the 'Big Screen' showing at Goodison. Instead of going to Macclesfield, I decided to watch from that vantage point as I have never been in the Park End since its renovation and I have never seen a 'beamback' before. I was impressed with the Park End facilities compared with my usual spec and the screen, moved from the corner of Bullens road and Park End to the 'D' of the Park End goalmouth was adequate. 3,000 of us assembled and saw us start confidently but without much threat.

We had a commentator for the game and to say he was perfunctuary just about covered it. You know the thing I mean — Osman passes to Cahill a few seconds after we have seen it. He couldn't quite work out if he was on radio or television.

The game itself I thought was poor but after witnessing Tranmere, Shrewsbury and Oldham in this competition, the result was all important — we are in the hat! We got an early shock and reminder of campaigns past when a cross from the left found the head of Nat Brown (on loan from Blue Square side Wrexham) who headed over when he should have scored.

We then dominated proceedings but a combination of poor passes and even more annoyingly poor crosses when well placed with no pressure failed to pick out a man. We continued in this vein and — just when you thought a replay might well be on the cards — another poor, poor cross from Baines was cleared only to a lurking Osman who struck a sweet right-footer into the top corner of the net.

Half-time and after sampling the delights of the Park End serveries, we concluded we could only go on and wrap things up.... But this is Everton and, whilst completely dominating, we continued to frustrate with woeful play in the last third. An in-swinging cross from Hibbert was spurned and Baines, after being released well by Lescott, fell over while crossing and the chance slipped by.

Pienaar found Osman with a great pass but his final ball was awful and easily ushered away by the League Two defence. Pienaar then put Baines in again but his cross was easily cut out. Then Lescott got on the end of an Arteta free-kick and from the melee, Jags instinctivly tried the overhead which found the wrong side of the roof of the net.

I t seemed a matter of time until we added to the scoreline as Jags had a blaster over and Baines tried a chip (or was it a cross?) that just missed the far post. Time almost up; eight remaining and we get the end of game jitters. Macc claim penalty as Thomas went down in a tackle with Hibbert, and in stoppage time Howard had to make his first move in anger of the entire half by diving to his left to keep out a goalbound shot from Yeo.

Overall not a game to analyze too much as cup-ties of this nature are inevitably all about getting the result and getting on the bus. There were some poor perforfmances all across the team today and not one player who tried could get in any sort of telling cross.

When I say Man of the Match for me me was between Jags and Lescott against a league two side speaks volumes. I could not help but think today that the thousands the Macc players earn a year compared with the millions the Everton players earn in no way represents a true differential between the two sets of players on today's showing.

Hull next in the hurly burly of the Premier League... no matter how today's game is viewed, Saturday will be another day and probably a totally different performance. Ain't footy just great.?

See you there... UP THE BLUES

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