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Venue: Goodison Park, Liverpool
FA Cup
 Saturday, 4 January 2014; 3:00pm
4 0
 Barkley (35'), Jelavic (44', 68'), Coleman (76')
Half Time: 2-0
Attendance: 32,283
Round 3
Referee: Howard Webb

Match Report

Everton booked their place in the FA Cup Fourth Round with a 4-0 hammering of Queens Park Rangers at Goodison Park.

Ross Barkley set the Blues on their way with a crisp drive with 10 minutes remaining in the first half after Everton had settled into a pattern of dominance that would be the theme of the afternoon.

Indeed, Harry Redknapp's Rangers side were awful on the day, lacking any fight or apparent desire to get back into the tie, and Nikica Jelavic doubled the lead just before the break with his first goal under Roberto Martinez.

The second half was really a matter of "how many?" for the Blues and Jelavic doubled his tally with a trademark poacher's goal from Bryan Oviedo's excellent cross to make it 3-0 before the Costa Rican was tripped in the area to hand the Croatian the chance to notch his first hat-trick with a penalty.

Unfortunately, Jelavic chipped his spot-kick onto the bar but Seamus Coleman's superb finish completed a rout that might have been more emphatic were it not for Julio Cesar in the visitors' goal.

Match Summary

Distin was ruled out and Baines did not feature as Roberto Martinez made a number of changes to the line-up that started at Stoke on New Year's Day. Howard, Baines, Pienaar and Lukaku were rested. Naismith and Jelavic started together to reignite their old Rangers partnership up front. Andy Johnson and Richard Dunne were on the QPR bench. Kick-off was delayed to 3:10pm due to congestion caused by ticketing issues. Live commentary was available via evertontv in the UK and EU.

QPR got off to a bright start, with an early shot at the Everton goal. But Coleman was lively scamping on down the right and earning a free that Oviedo whipped in smartly but no-one on the end of it. Jelavic got onto a loose ball then hit the side-netting with Naismith poaching.

Everton kept pushing forward, Osman involved in the attacking moves, and getting stuck into their regular game, Osman again getting close but lashing high over the bar. barkley was next to have a shot, low, saved by Cesar.

Great defending by Stones and Alcaraz set up a good attack as Everton continued to dominate until QPR got a good ball in that ran right across the front of the Everton goal, but no-one there to score.... while Jelavic was getting himself caught offside a little too frequently.

Coleman danced in and forced a double save off Ceasar. Everton came close again but with 25 mins gone, Everton were really in need of a goal. They were winning corners, and from one, Barkley forced a good save, then Osman on the rebound, in front of an open goal, smacked it over from 7 yards out.

Everton finally went ahead with a fine low shot following more good patient buildup, Ross Barkley putting the Blues ahead after some great play from Oviedo.

Then, just before the break a mistake by Henry and Jelavic was in and he made no mistake with a fine shot from 25 yards to give the Blues a much more respectable half-time scoreline.

Barkley should have done better after picking on a mistake by sub Kranjcar, on for Taore. Coleman came very close to the third goal, Everton with more patient building, players surging forward, Coleman exchanging with Jelavic then shooting but Cesar saves.

Andy Johnson came on to a tremendous reception from the Evertonians. Osman was next to line up for shooting practice, but could not produce the coup de grace, while behind him the Everton defence anchored by Alcaraz were imperious.

Bryan Oviedo did really well to swing in a superb cross, Jelavic on the end of it, powered home a great header to make it three for Everton and two for the centre-forward.

A free-kick on the outside of the QPR box was teed up for Jelavic, but his strike was deflected behind for a corner. Barkley then danced through the crowd and looked to pull the trigger.

Jelavic scampered through into the QPR area but it was Oviedo who was tripped inside the area: Penalty, and Jelavic stepped up but he tried to be too clever, chipping it against the crossbar, a really stupid decision, rather than just smacking it home... silly mistake by the Croatian.

So Seamus Coleman decided to show him how it was done, a fantastic run and then side-footing a superb finish into the corner from 20 yards out. Then, a certain goal however, not one but two goal-line clearances by Clint Hill prevented Oviedo then Jelavic from getting the 5th goal.

Coleman went off to a great round of applause, and on came Tony Hibbert, with Johnny Heitinga also coming on, replacing Gareth Barry for the last 8 mins. Barkley tried to do it all, the youngster going all the way but his shot flying over.

Alcaraz was a little sloppy allowing Kranjcar to run away with it but his effort summed up the paucity of QPR in this match; they had been poor.

Ultimately a very confident and dominant display by an imperious Blues side that demonstrates how Roberto Martinez has got the whole squad buying into his excellent brand of football, setting off on the Road to Wembley in fine style.

Michael Kenrick


Match Preview

Everton take a breather from the intensity of their push for a top-four finish with an FA Cup Third Round tie against Queens Park Rangers at Goodison Park.

Having won the competition with Wigan Athletic last May – knocking the Blues out in stunning fashion at the Quarter Final stage along the way, of course – Roberto Martinez begins his quest to win the world's oldest knockout competition in back-to-back seasons.

His Everton squad came through the busy Festive season with seven points from 12 but also picked up some more injury problems along the way. Phil Jagielka was ruled out for a month with a hamstring injury after the defeat to Sunderland and Sylvain Distin picked up a similar, albeit less severe, muscle strain in the win over Southampton.

Martinez confirmed in his pre-match press conference that the Frenchman will be missing again this weekend which will mean a continuation of the defensive partnership between Antolin Alcaraz and John Stones that was so impressive against Stoke City on Wednesday.

And the manager suggested that there might be other changes to his line-up, saying that, "We have a strong group and everyone is ready to represent Everton. Making changes doesn't mean we will be weakened."

That opens up possibilities for the likes of Joel Robles, Steven Naismith, Bryan Oviedo and, potentially, Nikica Jelavic for starting berths, although the Croatian is a potential target for interested buyers this month and, like John Heitinga, may not be risked for that reason. Martinez appears to be working on the assumption that Jelavic will be staying unless a decent offer comes in so he could be a good bet to play this weekend.

Though Martinez's teams have defied conventional logic and performed well when he has made a slew of changes – although, the obviousy aberration on that score was the League Cup defeat at Fulham – he will be wary of the potential for a slip in the FA Cup against a lower-division side playing without anything to lose.

Harry Redknapp's QPR are currently third in the Championship and bidding to return to the top-flight after being relegated last season and they still boast a number of experienced players who could cause the Blues problems, including ex-Evertnon striker, Andy Johnson, Yossi Benayoun, Beniot Assou-Ekotto, Junior Hoilett, Shaun Wright-Phillips and Niko Krancjar. A repeat of last season's 2-0 win for the Blues in the Premier League – albeit secured thanks to goals by Darron Gibson and Victor Anichebe, neither of whom will be playing this time – would do Martinez nicely, though.

A home draw against a lower-division side is all you can ask for in the Third Round but the job is still there to be done. A professional display will be required to book passage to the next phase and to keep the momentum rolling on the League front.

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< Stoke (A) Norwich (H) >
EVERTON (4-2-3-1)
  Coleman (82' Hibbert)
  Barry (82' Heitinga)
  Barkley (89' Mirallas)
  Osman (c)
  Subs not used
  Deulofeu (injured)
  Gibson (injured)
  Jagielka (injured)
  Kone (injured)
  McAleny (injured)
  Duffy (loan)
  Garbutt (loan)
  Junior (loan)
QPR (4-4-2)
  Onuoha (57' Johnson)
  Traore (46' Kranjcar)
  Austin (76' Benayoun)
  Subs not used


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