Memory Lane — Man City v Everton

From Hyde Road to the Etihad Stadium: Manchester City versus Everton

From Hyde Road to the Etihad Stadium: Manchester City versus Everton

Today will mark the 82nd visit by Everton to Manchester City for a top-flight match and they will hope to emulate the first Everton team to represent the club at the home of the Manchester club who had won promotion from the Second Division the previous year. On that occasion the Toffees won by the odd goal in three at Hyde Road, Manchester. The match was played on 23 December 1899 and the Liverpool Mercury reported the following:

The first of the season's League engagements between these clubs took place at Hyde road on Saturday, before about 15,000 spectators. In the Everton ranks Proudfoot displaced Toman at centre-forward, and Eccles resumed his old position vice B.Sharp. The City were well represented and at 2-15 the sides faced as follows: - Everton: - Muir, goal, Eccles and Balmer backs, Wolstenholmes, Boyle, and Abbott, halfbacks, Sharp, Taylor (captain), Proudfoot, Settle, and Gray, forwards. Manchester City: - Williams, goal, Read, and Jones backs, Moffatt, Smith and Holmes, halfbacks Meredith, Ross Gillespie, Williams, and Dougals, forwards….

The second half opened with the City pressing smartly but they could not defeat Muir, and retaliating the Everton right wing became aggressive with the result that Sharp put in a swinging centre, which gray headed into net, play having been in progress twelve minutes from the resumption. Eccles smartly pulled up Dougal when defeat looked certain, and immediately afterwards Gray had an open goal, but made poor use of his opportunity. Boyle followed with a long shot, and for some time the Everton forwards were peppering at the City goal, which had several narrow escapes.

Eventually Settle met a centre from sharp, and, eluding the backs sent in a low shot out of the reach of Williams. Fifteen minutes were left for play, and Everton looked like adding to the score, when the City put on a spurt and gave Muir an anxious time. Three minutes from the finish Smith put in a cross shot, which Meredith converted and when the end came Everton were victors of a hard and interesting game by two goals to one.

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Manchester City gained revenge for that defeat by winning the next couple of meetings. Prior to their previous defeat (2-0) at Hyde Road, Everton FC were informed of the demise of John Houlding as reported in the Hull Daily Mail on 18 March 1902. Information reached Liverpool on Monday of the death at Cimiez of Alderman John Houlding, an ex-Lord Mayor of the city, who has had a remarkable career. From a humble beginning he built up an extensive brewing and public house business, and for many years has been one of the leading public men of Liverpool in Corporation, poor law, political, and philanthropic work. He was long known as “the King of Everton,” and owed a great deal of his popularity to his interest in athletics. On 28 December 1903, The Liverpool Courierreported:

Everton's holiday fixture was with Manchester City at Hyde Road. Some 30,000 people turned up in fine weather to witness the encounter, the greatest enthusiasm being shown by the holiday crowd. Everton had a strong eleven in the field, but the City were without Burgess and McMahon. The players lined up as follows:-

Manchester City: - Hillman, goal, Davidson, and Slater, backs, Frost, Hinds, and Ashworth, half-backs, Mereidith, Livingston, Grilespie, Turnbull, and Trelfall forwards.
Everton: - Kitchen, goal W.Balmer, and Crelly, backs, Wolstenholme, Booth (captain), and Abbott half-backs, Sharp, Taylor, Settle, McDermott, and Corrin forwards. Referee Fred Kirkman

The game opened at a hot pace, both sides at once putting their full energies into the struggle. Each end was visited in the first few moments, but the defence prevailed on either side. A free kick was given against Everton, but this was put behind. Everton then made tracks for the other end, but Davidson cleared. Again the Blues got down, and Settle missed a possible chance by passing out to Sharp instead of shooting.

Everton were now working hard, especially on the right-wing, where Sharp and Taylor gave the City defence plenty to do. At Length the home centre having got the ball away a grand run was made by Meredith, which aroused the enthusiasm of the crowd. He centred magnificently but Crelly cleared. Everton then attacked on the right and a foul was given against Manchester City close in. Wolstenholme took the kick, and placed the ball grandly in front of goal. McDermott got at it, and headed the ball easily past Hillman into the net….

The game was maintained at a hot pace, both teams putting plenty of vigour into their work. The game was stopped for a moment when Turnbull was hurt, but he soon resumed. Everton renewed the attack, and Settle beating Davidson, who was a trifle slow in clearing. Looked like having an open goal, when Hillman rushed out and cleared at the expense of a fruitless corner…

The City forward, struck to their work, and Livingstone sent in another shot, which went wide. Still the home team were not to be denied, and a combined attack was made. Crelly failed to check the rush, and the ball travelled to Gillespie. Amid a ruck of players in the goalmouth, he coolly tipped the leather out of Kitchen reach into the net. The City supporters were enraptured at this equalising point, which came at a few minutes only from the interval. Everton tried desperately for the lead, but although the corner was forced they could get no further. Hillman caught a long shot, and Settle and Taylor vainly tried to charge the big man into the net. Then the whistle sounded the interval. Half-time Manchester City 1 Everton 1.

In the second half Everton did most of the attacking, and but for the fine defence of Hillman would have added to their score. The home team lost Frost, owing to an injury, and while Manchester were playing with ten men, Settle put Everton ahead. Frost returned, but Everton continued to press, and five minutes from the finish Taylor added another. Everton continued to hold the upper hand, and finally gained a decisive victory. Result Manchester City 1, Everton 3.

Evertonians would have to wait another dozen or so years to see their team win at Manchester City as the Citizens held sway in their meetings with the Toffees winning eight consecutive matches and drawing just the once. Manchester City won the FA Cup in 1904 by beating local rivals Bolton Wanderers (1-0) at Crystal Palace, in fact City were only pipped to the ‘Double’ by Sheffield Wednesday who accumulated three points more than City, Everton who had done the league double over City and arguably cost City the title, finished a point behind the Mancunians in third place.

A pre-match article on 17 April 1915 in the Evening Express,, seemed to suggest that Everton had missed their opportunity to become English League Champions:-

From an Everton point of view the recent successes of the club have occasioned much regret at the loss of points at home. As events turn out, Everton have had the League championship almost placed at their feet this season, while the Cup, too, seemed to be within their grasp, but they have fallen between the two stools. There is, of course, an outside chance – or there was this morning – of the “Blues” gaining the topmost place, but so much depended on others that the odds are very pronounced.

It is generally acknowledged, however, that the “Blues” have proved themselves one of the teams of the season, and it may be a long time before Everton are able to command so good a good a combination. A few slips at home when least expected did not appear to be serious, but now we see how important they were. A club to go to the top must win their home games and have a fair average away, but the curiosity of Everton's doings is that they have gained more points away than at home. To gain 23 points out of a possible 36 on “foreign” soil is a record to be proud of. The remaining 20 points were of course, gained at home, so that we have the curiosity of the club doing better away from home than on their own ground. Once again it would seem that it is a case of being so near and yet so far.

The newspaper needn’t have worried too much as Everton continued their fine away form and Rover reported for the same newspaper the events at Hyde Road:/p>

The first half had produced a display that was quite out of the run at this period of the campaign. There was no suggestion of end of the season play, and the respective sides gave fully of their best. There was little indeed between the contesting sides, but the slight superiority came the way of Everton, who on the play just about deserved their lead at the interval. The defence and attack reached a good standard, as was also the case on the side of the City, but the forwards, but the forwards of the latter side were not so sprightly when close range was reached, and thereby lost any chances they had of dividing the spoils.

The second half opened in dashing style, and in the first couple of minutes the City appeared to have a chance as the result of a free kick just outside the penalty line. The ball was well placed for Taylor but Weller had anticipated the movement to a nicety, and cleared in effective fashion. However, the home forwards kept pegging away, but eventually the venue was changed, and Parker lifted the ball over the bar. Then came a great opportunity for the City to get on level terms as the result of good work by Jones and Taylor, and the ball was finally placed for Cartwright who unmarked, made a wretched attempt to score as the ball sailed ridiculously wide of the mark. Another chance of equalising came the way of Howard but again the opportunity went a begging, and Weller cleared.

The pace was now keener than ever, and both sides were evidently over-anxious and the finishing touches suffered thereby. However, Howard had one great chance after James had made the running, but his effort was splendidly anticipated by fern, who helped the ball over the bar at a time which all seemed lost. The City continued to steadily apply pressure, but Fern again saved brilliantly from a header by Barnes. Then Howard had a clear run but could do no more than shoot in the direction of Fern, who needless to state gave nothing away.

Play continued to be fast and exciting with the City generally aggressive but they were up against the Everton defenders in one of their stubborn moods, and they could extract little quarter. The City kept up their attack to the finish, but were unable to penetrate the Everton defence. Final Result Manchester City 0 Everton 1

The Liverpool Daily Post and Mercury also had their say on the weekend’s events:-

In spite of unprecedented handicaps the football season looks like finishing with a veritable flourish of trumpets. Interest in the League Championship was never keener, and, locally the great question is: Can Everton secure premier honours? The famous Liverpool team up to Easter were well in the running for the great event, but they almost eclipsed their chances by dropping four points in their home matches on Good Friday and Saturday. Now, to use a well-known racing phrase, they are coming along with a wet sail, and they possess a really good sporting outside chance of recovering the lost ground and topping the table. This metaphor may be somewhat mixed, but it will be well understood by those who take an interest in the Association code.

Their form against Manchester City at Hyde-road on Saturday was infinitely refreshing, and even the Mancunian critics were forced to admit that the combination and balance of the team were well-nigh perfect. With both sides in the running for the Championship, added zest and keenest was lent to the encounter, with the result that a crowd approximated at 30,000 witnessed a fast, clever contest.

The margin of victory was the narrowest possible, yet all unbiased judges must admit that the better eleven won. It is true that at certain periods of the game the City attacked with much more vigour than their opponents, but in the main they finished feebly, and it is to the failure of their forwards that defeat must be attributed…

Everton's goal was originated by the centre line. The ball was put well forward, and Parker, taking it on the run, put in a surprise shot, which Smith intercepted with his left arm. It rebounded into play, and before the home keeper could recover himself Clennell nipped in and scored at close quarters. From this point up to the interval Everton were much the better side. In the second period the City made strenuous efforts to place themselves on level terms. Their persistence was admirable, but it could not overcome the inflexible methods of the Everton defenders.

Everton's success as may be gathered was primary due to the work of the defence. Fern was not often troubled, but when wanted he was there. Thompson was perhaps, the best back on the field, and Weller made several very effective clearances. Galt and Fleetwood dominated their department, and had much to do in preserving the balance of the side. Parker was so well watched that he rarely got a chance of getting through and when he did luck disdained to come his way. Both Nuttall and Harrison played well in the two outside berths; but perhaps the busiest-and certainly the most successful –forward was Clennell. The result was a great disappointment to the Manchester supporters, who had frankly anticipated victory and the crowning laurels of the Championship.

Manchester City:- Smith, Henry, and Fletcher, backs, Hughes, Hanney, and Brannan, half-backs, Jones, Taylor, Howard, Barnes, and Cartwright, forwards.
Everton: - Fern, goal, Thompson, and Weller, backs, Fleetwood, Galt (captain), Grenyer, half-back, Nuttall, Kirsopp, Parker, Clennell, and Harrison, forwards. Referee Mr. L. Hitchin.

Everton did go on to clinch the title by a single point from Oldham highlighting the importance of the victory in Manchester. City finished in a disappointing fifth place but only three points adrift of the Champions.

Manchester City left Hyde Road in 1923, predominantly because of a fire which had destroyed the main stand three years earlier, and moved to a purpose built stadium situated in Maine Road, Moss Side where they would be based for the next eighty years. Everton’s record at Maine Road was no better than it had been at Hyde Road and they had to wait seven years for their first victory at the venue. The Liverpool Post and Mercury match report by “Bee” said:

Everton beat Manchester City at Maine Road yesterday, before 20,000 spectators by 2 goals to 1. In beating the Maine Road side they defeated one of the best teams in the land – a side that is still in the Cup series, and a side that had ideas of over-hauling Sheffield Wednesday in the League Championship race. Therefore, it has a merit and standing that is uncommonly good. It has only to be added that there was no suggestion of fluke or accident about the result to make the victory quite the best Everton have gained this season, and good enough to be classed with their win at Grimsby. The result may not have been a just one, because Everton and the writer believed the goal scored by Marshall was due to an offside verdict not being delivered by Referee Prince-Cox when the facts and positions of players justified it; but it was a just verdict in that Everton were the superior side and won in spite of a goal against that should not have been allowed…

The win stamped Everton, on such form, as nearer the top of the division than the foot of it. The effect of such a win must be enormous; it is a pity therefore, that there should be any doubt about Dean not playing at the Arsenal ground on Saturday…

Everton took a large number of supporters with them, and they chanted the 1, 2,3,4,5 song when the first goal had come to their side. This strikes me as optimists of a super fire character. Yet had Everton drawn or lost the game, I should have felt they had gone from the ground with honours, and without their just reward. They had earned a victory, and the Marshall goal scored near half-time would have rankled very seriously.

Manchester City; - Barber, goal; Felton and McCloy, backs; Borrall, Cowan, and Heireman; half-backs; Toseland, Marshall, Johnson, Tilson, and Brook, forwards.
Everton; - Davies, goal; Williams, and O; Donnell; backs, Robson, Griffiths, and T. White, half-backs; Critchley, Martin, Dean (captain), Rigby and Stein, forwards, forwards...
Referee Mr. Prince-Cox, London.

Although Everton did beat Manchester City at Wembley in 1933 to lift the FA Cup, Everton’s Maine Road hoodoo continued. Manchester City lifted the FA Cup the following season (33-34) by beating Portsmouth 2-0 at Wembley and three years later they claimed the First Division Title for the first time in their history but the following season (37-38) they were relegated despite being the highest goal scorers in the top-flight they scored 80 times and Everton were the second highest scorers with 79. City regained their top-flight status in 1947.

Everton’s next victory at Maine Road came in September 1947 as Stork reported for The Liverpool Daily Post:

Sagar, the Everton goalkeeper, has been with the Goodison club for eighteen seasons, during which time he has performed many wonderful things, but he has never played better than he did at Maine Road, Manchester, last night. He received an ovation and was entitled to it, for it was he as much as anyone else who enabled Everton to beat Manchester City 1-0 and therefore register their first double of the season.

They say a goalkeeper cannot win a game. I do not agree, for Sagar saved Everton at a time when Manchester City might have run rampant. It only needed an opening goal to send the City into a blaze for at times they swarmed round the Everton goalmouth and delivered shots of such calibre that they would have beaten most goalkeepers. But Sagar was inspired and he saved magnificently from Black and Smith.

But to turn to the goal which accounted for the City. It came at seventy-one minutes after Manchester had been probing the Everton defence to the full, without, however, being able to penetrate their rear lines. Eglington out on the left wing flashed a ball over to Stevenson who took it on the volley and the ball hit the far upright and went to the back of the net with Swift so surprised that he could do nothing about it. Stevenson might have scored again a little later, for it was only by a matter of inches that he failed to so. His shot hit the bar.

One would not say that Everton were entitled to their success, for the City were on the attack for most of the game, but they ran against a defence which gave nothing away. Humphreys was the rock on which the City crashed. McMorran had opened well and promised to be a source of danger, but afterwards he was well held. The City after they were a goal in arrears made a valiant effort to break down this cast-iron curtain, but even if they broke through the half-back and full back line they had still the inspired Sagar to face, and he gave a superlative display of goalkeeping which even foe had to acknowledge.

Everton; Sagar, goal; Saunders and Greenhalgh (captain), backs; Bentham, Humphreys, and Farrell, half-backs; Mcllhatton, Stevenson, Dodds, Wainwright, and Eglington, forwards.
Manchester City; Swift, goal; Sproston and Westwood, backs; Fagan, McDowell, and Emptage, half-backs; Wharton, Black, McMorran, Smith and Clarke, forwards.
Referee; Mr. H. Hartles, Runcorn.

City were relegated in 1950, but bounced back the following season as they won promotion and replaced Everton in the top division, who were relegated. Manchester City had the best of it when the sides met in the FA Cup in 1956 and the 2-1 victory over Everton set them on their way to another triumph at Wembley where they beat Birmingham City 3-1 in the final, to make amends for their defeat to Newcastle United 1-3 in the final of the previous year.

Everton gained revenge for the cup defeat, the following year when goals by Kenneth Birch, Jimmy Gauld, William Haughey and Graham Williams gave Everton the points in a four-two victory at Maine Road. In the next meeting, Ken Barnes scored a hat-trick of penalties against the Toffees on December 7 1957 as City beat Everton (6-2), Jimmy Harris scored twice for the Blues.

Bobby Collins, Jimmy Harris and Wally Fielding were on the scoresheet the following September as Everton overcame City (1-3) at Maine Road. Johnny Carey’s Everton team lost their next couple of encounters at Maine Road but Harry Catterick’s first visit to the ground as Everton manager the Toffees took the spoils thanks to goals from Derek Temple, Frank Wignall and Alex Young in September 1961.

In Everton’s championship winning season (62-63) the Toffees managed a 1-1 draw at Maine Road with Peter Dobing scoring for the hosts and Frank Wignall on the scoresheet for the visitors.
Everton: West; Parker, Meagan; Gabriel, Labone, Harris; Morrissey, Stevens, Young, Wignall, Veall

Manchester City were relegated that season but won promotion in the (65-66) campaign under the stewardship of Joe Mercer and Malcolm Allison. Everton managed to overcome the second division outfit at Molineux following goalless draws at Goodison and Maine Road on the way to lifting the FA Cup at Wembley.

Colin Bell helped City to get a semblance of revenge at Maine Road the following November when he scored the only goal of the game, twelve minutes from time.

Everton travelled to Maine Road on Monday 29 April 1968, safe in the knowledge that they had secured a place in that season’s FA Cup final, as they had defeated Leeds United 1-0 just two days earlier at Old Trafford. City had bigger fish to fry as they were involved in battle to win the League with their rivals Manchester United. It wasn’t a two horse race either, as Everton, Liverpool and Leeds all had hopes of taking the title in a highly competitive title-race.

Tony Book and Tommy Coleman helped City to the points as they beat Everton 2-0. It was a result that helped City to keep up the pressure at the top and it was a pivotal day as their neighbours and league leaders Manchester United had been beaten by Everton’s FA Cup final opponents, WBA 6-3 at the Hawthorns.

Manchester City ultimately won the title on the last day of the season thanks to a victory over Newcastle United (3-4) at St. James’ Park, whilst Manchester United had been beaten 1-2 at Old Trafford by Sunderland. Unfortunately for Everton they lost their big game at Wembley to West Brom thanks to an extra-time winner by Jeff Astle and had to settle for fifth place in the league, six points behind Manchester City.

City went one better than Everton the following year by lifting the FA Cup at Wembley having beaten the Toffees 1-0 in the Semi-Final at Villa Park, thus gaining revenge for the home defeat by Everton 1-3 the previous December. Joe Royle had given Everton an early lead by scoring in the first minute and just eight minutes later Jimmy Husband doubled the visitors lead. Colin Bell pulled a goal back for the hosts, midway through the first-half but Jimmy Husband struck seven minutes from time to seal the points for the Merseyside Blues.

The 1969-70 campaign was a successful one for both clubs as City achieved European success by winning the European Cup Winners' Cup in 1970, beating GĂłrnik Zabrze 2-1 in Vienna. City also won the League Cup that season by beating West Brom 2-1 at Wembley. City had defeated Everton 2-0 at Maine Road on the road to Wembley. Everton went on to win the League Championship and gained a draw at Maine Road in the early part of the league campaign, thanks to a second minute goal by Johnny Morrissey, Ian Bowyer equalised for the hosts.
Everton: West; Wright, Brown; Jackson, Labone, Harvey; Husband, Ball, Royle, Hurst, Morrissey.

The final time that Harry Catterick took his Everton side to Maine Road in August 1972, resulted in a victory for the Toffees as John Connolly scored the only goal of the game. Everton: Lawson; Newton, Wright; Kendall, Kenyon, Lyons; Husband, Bernard, Royle, Harvey, Connolly.

Evertonians would have to wait 14 more years to taste victory at Maine Road as they couldn’t manage to beat the Manchester club there in either the League or the FA Cup, the venue also saw them lose an FA Cup Semi-Final replay and League Cup Final replay against their neighbours Liverpool in 1977 and 1984 respectively.

During that period Manchester City won the League Cup by beating Gordon Lee’s Newcastle United (2-1) at Wembley in 1976. In 1981 City beat Everton (3-1) at Maine Road in a sixth-round replay following a draw (2-2) at Goodison Park, but failed to lift the FA Cup as they succumbed to Tottenham’s Argentine contingent in the replay at Wembley.

City were relegated in 1983 but regained their top-flight status in 1985. Jimmy Frizzell’s Manchester City took on potential champions, Everton at Maine Road in November 1986 Adrian Heath opened the scoring in the fourth minute but Paul Moulden equalised six minutes before half-time. Paul Power the former Maine Road favourite put the Toffees back in the lead with less than twenty minutes remaining before Adrian Heath sealed Everton’s victory four minutes from time.
Everton: Southall; Harper, Pointon; Ratcliffe, Mountfield, Power; Steven, Heath, Sharp, Adams, Sheedy.

Everton were on the way to becoming Champions for the second time in three seasons whilst Manchester City were relegated for the second time in five seasons. City bounced back to the top-flight in 1989. The last occasion that the two club’s met in the Football League Division one fixture at Maine Road was in September 1991 when Howard Kendall’s Everton emerged triumphant, as Peter Beardsley scored the only goal of the game in the final quarter of the match.

In the first Premier League meeting at Maine Road between the teams which came in the final game of the (92/93) season, Everton beat Manchester City (2-5). Peter Beagrie scored twice for the Toffees’ against two different goalkeepers, the first keeper was Martyn Margetson in the first-half and the second keeper was Andy Dibble who was unable to prevent Peter from scoring his second goal. The other scorers in that game were Matt Jackson, Peter Beardsley and Preki for Everton, whilst Keith Curle successfully converted a penalty and David White also scored for the home team. Not only did City have two goalkeepers involved in that game but so too did Everton as Neville Southall had been substituted and his replacement Jason Kearton had made a rare outing in the first team.

Everton: Southall (Kearton), Holmes, Hinchcliffe, Ebbrell, Jackson, Ablett, Ward, Beardsley, Cottee, Preki (Barlow), Beagrie.
Manchester City: Margetson (Dibble), Ranson, Phelan, McMahon (Simpson), Curle, Vonk, White, Sheron, Quinn, Flitcroft and Holden.

Joe Royle and Alan Ball faced each other at Maine Road as respective managers of FA Cup holders, Everton and Manchester City in August 1995. Everton gained revenge for the previous season’s mauling by the hosts when they had lost 4-0 thanks to two goals apiece from Uwe Rosler and Paul Walsh, this time the Toffees ran out easy winners as Nicholas Spencer of the Electronic Telegraph reported:

Alan Ball's youthful collection ended a dispiriting night at Maine Road bottom of the table after a frustrating evening against an Everton side which did not have to extend itself in securing a comfortable win. A lengthy injury list and Ball's demands for greater commitment led him to give full debuts to two inexperienced defenders, Michael Brown and Rae Ingram, in an already experimental line-up.

The manager's exhortations ensured City came out with commitment written over their performance like Danish through bacon, with Uwe Rosler perpetrating a nasty foul on Barry Horne during the opening exchanges. But second-half goals from Joe Parkinson and Daniel Amokachi deflated them and there were several indications that the understanding between Earl Barrett and Andrei Kanchelskis will undermine far better defences than City's.

Given their mutual dislike of Old Trafford, some City supporters might have been tempted to cheer Kanchelskis, but the boos suggested they had not forgotten his hat-trick against City for United last season. Early signs were hopeful, however, particularly when Georgiou Kinkladze was in possession for City. The Georgian's ability to change direction and refusal to waste a pass were promising, but City seldom released anyone for him to pass to.

When Parkinson side-footed Everton into the lead in the 58th minute, the only surprise was that the man providing the perfect cut-back from the right was Amokachi, again deputising for Duncan Ferguson. City responded through Niall Quinn, whose downward header from Uwe Rosler's cross was kicked off the line by Gary Ablett. But it was one of only two meaningful saves forced from Neville Southall all evening.

Finally Kanchelskis found space to run directly at goal. His first shot was blocked, but when he prodded the rebound to Amokachi, the Nigerian turned to roll in a gentle second.

When Ball arrived at Maine Road he promised City would be back where they belonged come the end of the season. An unfortunate choice of words, and ones which will come back to haunt him if he cannot stabilise the ship swiftly.

Man City: Immel, Phelan, Kinkladze, Quinn, Flitcroft, Symons, Summerbee, Brown (Kerr 78), Ingram (Kernaghan 90), Rosler, Foster. Subs Not Used: Margetson. Booked: Phelan, Brown, Rosler.
Everton: Southall, Barrett, Unsworth, Watson, Ablett, Rideout, Horne, Limpar (Hinchcliffe 39), Amokachi, Kanchelskis, Parkinson. Subs Not Used: Kearton, Barlow. Booked: Rideout, Horne.

Att: 28,432. Ref: S Lodge (Barnsley)

Indeed Alan Ball’s words would come back to haunt him as Manchester City suffered relegation from the Premier League and much worse was to follow as the club found itself in the third tier of English Football. Former Everton boss Joe Royle, managed to get City promoted at the first attempt, in a dramatic play-off match against Gillingham. A second successive promotion saw City return to the Premier League.

Walter Smith’s Everton travelled to Maine Road in November 2000, hopeful of a positive result as City were on a losing streak of six matches but Joe Royle’s charges ran out comfortable winners as the BBC reported:

Manchester City halted a run of six straight defeats in spectacular style by thrashing Everton at Maine Road. City stopped the rot in emphatic fashion – but it was a day of humiliation for Everton boss Walter Smith and his team.

Maine Road boss Joe Royle insisted his side were playing well enough to move up the table despite their poor results, and City rewarded his faith. Everton were battered and beaten at the end of a first half in which City scored three times through Paolo Wanchope, Steve Howey and Shaun Goater. Substitute Paul Dickov piled on the agony for Everton - and sent Maine Road into ecstasy - by adding to the tally after the break. Gary Naysmith's own goal only confirmed this as one of the worst days since boss Smith arrived at Everton from Glasgow Rangers.

Man City: Weaver, Charvet, Tiatto, Howey, Dunne, Haaland, Whitley, Horlock, Wright-Phillips, Wanchope, Goater. Subs: Dickov, Kennedy, Wiekens, Bishop, Wright.
Everton: Gerrard, S. Watson, Weir, Unsworth, Naysmith, Nyarko, Pembridge, Gemmill, Gravesen, Campbell, Ball. Subs: Alexandersson, Hughes, Simonsen, Cadamarteri, Ferguson.
Referee: S Bennett (Orpington) replaced on 22 minutes

Both Walter Smith and Joe Royle were relieved of their duties as Manchester City were relegated at the end of the season and Everton managed to retain their top-flight status, thanks to the injection of confidence instilled by new Toffees boss David Moyes. Kevin Keegan took over the reins at Maine Road and he helped the Manchester club to promotion at the first time of asking.

David Moyes took his Everton team to Maine Road for the first time on the last day of August 2002, it was also to be Everton’s last visit to the venue as City were set to move into a brand new stadium the following season, but as Phil Richards of the BBC reported it wasn’t a happy day for Evertonians.

Nicolas Anelka opened his Premiership account in style for Kevin Keegan's team – scoring a hat-trick as 10-man Manchester City overcame Everton at Maine Road.

Anelka notched twice in the early stages of the match – putting City firmly in control – but the game was thrown into chaos by a controversial decision from referee Barry Knight. He correctly awarded Everton a penalty but ruined the match as a contest by dismissing Shaun Wright-Phillips for his challenge on Gary Naysmith.

Unsworth converted from the spot - and the rest of the match was a largely one-sided contest with Everton repeatedly denied an equaliser by Peter Schmeichel. But David Moyes' team lacked the guile and craft to make their advantage count - and were punished when Anelka completed his hat-trick five minutes from time.

The win is Manchester City's second of the season after beating Newcastle last weekend - but ends Everton's unbeaten start. Everton started the game confidently but could not create scoring chances - and after 14 minutes Anelka's long-range free-kick took a vicious deflection and eluded Steve Simonsen's flailing legs.

The Everton goalkeeper was slow to try and adjust his position following the deflection and should have done better. Minutes later Keegan's team doubled their advantage with a well-worked goal. Niclas Jensen brilliantly prevented the ball from drifting out of play for a throw-in on the left-hand side and fed the ball to Darren Huckerby, who crossed to the far post. Steve Howey headed the ball back across goal and, after the away side had inexcusable failed to clear the danger, Anelka swept the ball home from short range.

Rampant City almost scored a third, but Marc-Vivien Foe was twice denied by Simonsen. Everton boss David Moyes – frustrated with his team – withdrew Chinese international Tie Li after 25 minutes. And then – totally against the run of play – Everton scored and Wright-Phillips was controversially sent from the field.

Naysmith broke down the right and was clearly scythed down in the City area.

Knight had no choice but to award a penalty – but inexplicably red carded Phillips for a professional foul. Unsworth made no mistake from the penalty spot, knocking the ball to Schmeichel's left. Everton might have restored parity before the break but Kevin Campbell's angled shot was saved by Schmeichel.

Eight minutes into the second half Schmeichel again came to City's rescue after Campbell had beaten the off-side trap and fired at goal. Unsworth smashed a deep cross goalwards, which Schmeichel punched out of play.

From the subsequent corner Campbell was inches away from latching onto Alan Stubbs's header across goal. Simonsen saved from Huckerby after City hit Everton on the break before Toffees substitute Rodrigo shot narrowly wide.

The match became increasingly desperate, but Anelka sealed the points after 85 minutes. Naysmith fell on the ball - and Anelka quickly intercepted before bearing down on goal and striking the ball beyond Simonsen.

Man City: Schmeichel, Jihai, Howey, Distin, Wright-Phillips, Benarbia (Goater 86), Foe, Berkovic (Horlock 66), Jensen, Anelka, Huckerby (Tiatto 79).
Subs Not Used: Nash, Dunne. Sent Off: Wright-Phillips (28).
Booked: Benarbia.

Everton: Simonsen, Hibbert, Weir, Stubbs, Naysmith, Alexandersson (Rooney 64), Gravesen, Tie Li (Linderoth 25), Unsworth (Rodrigo 64), Campbell, Radzinski.
Subs Not Used: Gerrard, Weifeng Li.

Attendance: 34,835 Referee: B Knight (Kent).

Everton had to wait until the last game of the 2003-04 campaign to take on Manchester City in their new Manchester stadium, but whilst the environs were considerably different the result of the match was all too familiar for Evertonians as City celebrated only their fifth home victory of the season by over-powering Everton 5-1. City raced into a three goal lead thanks to a brace of goals from Paulo Wanchope and another goal from Nicolas Anelka. Everton’s Kevin Campbell headed into the net from a corner on the hour mark, but further goals from Sibierski and Shaun Wright-Phillips condemned Everton to a heavy defeat.

Man City: James, Jihai, Distin, Dunne, Tarnat, Wright-Phillips, Barton (Sibierski 85), Bosvelt, Reyna (Jordan 82), Anelka, Wanchope (Macken 79).
Subs Not Used: Arason, Fowler. Booked: Barton.

Everton: Martyn, Watson (Chadwick 71), Stubbs, Weir, Hibbert, Carsley, McFadden (Campbell 45), Yobo, Osman, Rooney, Radzinski (Linderoth 86).
Subs Not Used: Wright, Clarke. Booked: Rooney.

Attendance: 47,284. Referee: S Dunn (Gloucestershire).

Everton gained revenge for that defeat the following September when Tim Cahill scored the winning goal at the City of Manchester Stadium, as Everton made an excellent start to the campaign:

Tim Cahill suffered mixed emotions as he scored Everton's winner but was then sent off by referee Steve Bennett for an over-exuberant celebration. Everton's Ł2m summer signing from Millwall headed home on the hour to seal a richly-deserved victory.

David James, dropped by England for the World Cup qualifier in Poland, kept Everton at bay with saves from Steve Watson, Marcus Bent and Leon Osman. City barely troubled 10-man Everton in a bitterly disappointing display.

James was the central figure in a first 45 minutes that saw City enjoy the greater share of possession but Everton carve out the clearer chances. He was in action after 11 minutes, making a fine double save from Steve Watson after he had been played in by Leon Osman. James then denied Marcus Bent when he somehow kept out his header at point-blank range as he stole in on Lee Carsley's free-kick. Leon Osman was next to be frustrated from only 10 yards, but the youngster should have scored after being set up by Cahill.

City only created half chances, and the game was enlivened in first-half injury time when Carsley and Joey Barton were both booked after a crunching challenge.

Everton deservedly took the lead on the hour - but it was a bitter-sweet moment for Cahill. The Australian timed his run perfectly to head Tony Hibbert's cross past James. But as he celebrated his goal, referee Bennett stunned players and supporters alike by sending Cahill off for over-exuberance.

Everton held out in relative comfort in the closing stages, with only Sylvain Distin causing alarm, firing narrowly over from the edge of the area.

Man City: James, Mills, Dunne, Distin, Thatcher (Jihai 73), Wright-Phillips, Reyna, Barton, Sinclair (Sibierski 73), Anelka, Fowler (Macken 63). Subs Not Used: Waterreus, Bosvelt. Booked: Barton.

Everton: Martyn, Hibbert, Weir, Stubbs, Pistone, Osman (Gravesen 58), Watson, Carsley, Cahill, Kilbane (Naysmith 73), Bent (Ferguson 73). Subs Not Used: Wright, McFadden. Sending Off: Cahill (61). Booked: Carsley, Cahill, Pistone.

Att: 47,006. Ref: S Bennett (Kent).

City won the next match at their home ground against Everton, thanks to late goals from Danny Mills and Darius Vassell , a match which had the ridiculous kick-off time of 11:15am on a Sunday due to the demands of Pay Per View TV coverage. Leon Osman scored a late consolation on New Years’ Day 2007 as two goals from Georgios Samaras the second of which was from the penalty spot earned Stuart Pearce’s team all the points.

Former England manager Sven-Göran Eriksson became the club's first manager from overseas when appointed in 2007 and his first home encounter with Everton took place on February 25 2008. Chris Bevan of the BBC reported:-

Everton climbed back into fourth place in the Premier League after a comfortable win over Manchester City. The Toffees could have had a penalty when Tim Cahill's shot hit Micah Richards' arm and also went close when Steven Pienaar's shot hit the post.

Yakubu put Everton ahead when he met Cahill's low cross and Joleon Lescott headed home a second soon after. City lost their shape completely after the break and had Martin Petrov sent off late on for kicking Leon Osman.

It ended up as a ragged performance from the home side, with central-defender Richards pushed forward in the second half to leave some huge gaps at the back. And, if Everton had taken their chances and referee Rob Styles had seen two other penalty claims differently, then this would have been an even more comprehensive victory for the Toffees.

City are also involved in what is becoming an intriguing race for the fourth and final Champions League spot but they now lie six points behind Everton after they were found horribly wanting here.

Yakubu, operating as a lone striker, went close to opening the scoring in the third minute when he beat Joe Hart to Pienaar's cross but saw Richard Dunne clear his weak shot off the line. The visitors kept coming forward and should have had a spot-kick when Cahill's shot came back off Richards' elbow after the defender lost his footing in the area.

That stung City into action but they were unable to penetrate a solid Everton backline that defended fiercely on the edge of their own penalty area.

The same could not be said of the home defence, however, and Pienaar was given plenty of time to pick his spot before he curled in a dipping shot that came back off the woodwork with Hart beaten. City's players, who were sent on holiday by manager Sven-Goran Eriksson after beating neighbours Manchester United in their last game on 10 February, looked as though their minds were still on the beach.

Everton finally capitalised on the half-hour mark when Dunne gave the ball away and Cahill crossed for Yakubu, who finished with aplomb. Things got worse for City before the break when Lescott escaped Dunne to meet Carsley's cross and head past a stranded Hart.

That still left time for Eriksson's men to get back into the game but the second half only served to further expose their shortcomings.

Phil Neville was unlucky to see his shot fly over the bar straight after the interval and Dunne had to clear off the line after Cahill met Yakubu's cross


Eriksson's response was to throw men forward but although Petrov had a shot blocked by the impressive Phil Jagielka and Dunne headed over, City were looking even more shambolic at the other end.

Richards was lucky to only concede a free-kick on the edge of the area when he handled Lescott's long throw and Nedum Onuoha also handled the ball inside the box without being penalised. Hart saved City's blushes with a superb stop to keep out Lee Carsley's long-range shot, and repeated the trick to deny substitute Andy Johnson from close-range.

City did threaten again through Nery Castillo's long-range shot, which was blocked by Tim Howard, but their miserable night was summed up by Petrov's late dismissal after he kicked out at Osman, seconds after clashing with Yakubu.

Man City: Hart, Onuoha, Dunne, Richards, Ball, Vassell (Castillo 75), Gelson, Hamann (Elano 46), Ireland (Caicedo 68), Petrov, Mwaruwari.
Subs Not Used: Isaksson, Corluka. Sent Off: Petrov (90).

Everton: Howard, Hibbert, Yobo, Jagielka, Lescott, Neville, Carsley, Osman, Pienaar (Fernandes 56), Cahill, Yakubu, Fernandes (Johnson 67).
Subs Not Used: Wessels, Nuno Valente, Anichebe. Booked: Carsley.

Att: 41,728 Ref: Rob Styles (Hampshire).

Sven-Goran Eriksson was replaced by Mark Hughes in the summer of 2008 and in August 2008, the club was purchased by the Abu Dhabi United Group. The takeover was immediately followed by a flurry of bids for high profile players; the club broke the British transfer record by signing Brazilian international Robinho from Real Madrid for Ł32.5 million David Moyes took his team to Eastlands in December of that year. In a tight and entertaining encounter it was Everton who took the points thanks to a late, late, winner from Everton talisman Tim Cahill.

Manchester City manager Mark Hughes: "We have created chances; hit the bar, but they have set their stall out over the years and have had numerous 1-0 wins and won games at the death.”You know when the ball comes into the box you have to mark Tim Cahill properly and unfortunately we didn't do that and got his with a sucker punch. "Maybe we didn't do enough to win the game ourselves, but to lose it at the end was very hard to take."

Everton manager David Moyes: "I think when you lose the way we did to Aston Villa last week you can go one of two ways, you can either go under or do what we did today. "It took us a few days to get over Villa but I thought we deserved to win after playing so well. They're great lads and I am delighted with them. "We had no fit strikers but I thought we did really well and I thought Tim Cahill did a great job for us in several positions and topped it all with a goal."

Man City: Hart, Zabaleta, Richards, Dunne, Ball, Ireland, Kompany, Elano, Wright-Phillips, Mwaruwari (Jo 46), Robinho (Vassell 82). Subs Not Used: Schmeichel, Onuoha, Fernandes, Hamann, Ben-Haim.

Everton: Howard, Neville, Yobo, Jagielka, Lescott, Osman, Pienaar, Fellaini, Castillo, Arteta, Cahill. Subs Not Used: Nash, Hibbert, Baines, Van der Meyde, Rodwell, Jutkiewicz, Gosling. Booked: Fellaini.

Att: 41,344 Ref: Mark Halsey (Lancashire)

During the summer of 2009, Manchester City took transfer spending to an unprecedented level, with an outlay of over Ł100 million on players Gareth Barry, Roque Santa Cruz, Kolo TourĂ©, Emmanuel Adebayor, Carlos Tevez and Joleon Lescott a controversial signing which had angered Everton FC and David Moyes in particular.

In December 2009, Mark Hughes was replaced as the manager of City by Roberto Mancini and it was the Italian who was in charge when Everton arrived in Manchester on March 10 2010. Nathan Mercer reported on the game for the BBC:

Everton dented Manchester City's hopes of a Champions League place with a fully deserved win at Eastlands. Tim Cahill scored a trademark header after a neat build-up between Mikel Arteta and Leighton Baines, who provided the cross.

City raised the tempo in the second half but after finding no way through, Arteta slotted home a fine second after a superb run from Jack Rodwell. In the final stages both managers were sent to the stands as tempers frayed.

Angry City boss Roberto Mancini raced to retrieve the ball, clattering into his opposite number David Moyes in the process, sparking a melee on the sidelines and prompting referee Peter Walton to dismiss them both. And after inflicting Mancini his first defeat as Manchester City manager back in January, Moyes once more masterminded a fine victory for his side. The win takes Everton to within three points of rivals Liverpool in the Premier League and puts them firmly in contention to clinch a Europa League spot – a feat Moyes described would be one of his finest achievements.

The Toffees, who have won their last three visits to the City of Manchester Stadium without conceding a goal, were again good value for their win here and in the process ended City's unbeaten record at home this season. Carlos Tevez's typically industrious efforts aside, City struggled to break the visitors' stubborn resistance with the Argentine cutting a frustrated figure by the lack of service.

Sylvain Distin and Phil Jagielka marshalled Everton's defensive unit superbly throughout, pressing and closing City's forwards, while Johnny Heitinga was effective in breaking down the supply line. And after absorbing the home side's early pressure, the visitors caught the City defence unprepared with a clinical free-kick on 33 minutes.

Arteta disguised the set-piece by pulling back for Baines, who clipped in a cross for Cahill to guide his effort - the fifth from his head this season – through a crowd of players and beyond Shay Given. In contrast to Everton's tight defensive line, Arteta and Cahill were able to pick holes and expose frailties in the home side's rearguard.

City upped the tempo midway through the second half and pinned the Toffees in their own half, with the away side retreating and comfortable in containing their hosts. Substitute Roque Santa Cruz blasted an effort over the bar after finding space on the edge of the box, but Howard was seldom called into making a save.

And Everton killed City off on 85 minutes with an electric counter-attack in which Cahill and Arteta once again combined to devastating effect. Substitute Rodwell broke down the right and squared across the box which Cahill left for his midfield partner to drill low into the net.

And as Mancini grew ever more frustrated, his over-enthusiastic efforts to retrieve the ball for his side ended in him being sent from the dugout. Moyes was also dismissed, albeit harshly for his part in the incident in which he appeared only to be standing his ground.

Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini on the incident with Moyes: "I've spoken now with David and if I made a mistake I am sorry.”I wanted to get the ball because there was another five minutes at the end. "This can happen sometimes in a game but it is finished now. I was frustrated for the players."

Everton boss David Moyes: "I wasn't the one waving my hand for bookings.”I was very surprised; I didn't know what I had done wrong. I shouldn't have been sent off, simple as." "I held the ball longer than I should have but I was trying to make a change. He showed his passion for his team and his club and I can accept that."

Man City 01 Given yellow card 02 Richards (Vieira 75) 05 Zabaleta 28 Kolo Toure 33 Kompany 07 Ireland (Wright-Phillips 41) 11 A Johnson (Santa Cruz 57) 18 Barry 34 De Jong yellow card 32 Tevez yellow card 39 Bellamy.
Subs: 12 Taylor, 04 Onuoha, 15 Garrido, 16 Sylvinho, 08 Wright-Phillips, 24 Vieira, 14 Santa Cruz.

Everton 24 Howard 03 Baines 05 Heitinga yellow card 06 Jagielka 15 Distin 18 Neville 10 Arteta (Yobo 90+2) 17 Cahill 20 Pienaar yellow card 21 Osman 08 Saha (Rodwell 72).
Subs: 01 Nash, 02 Hibbert, 04 Yobo, 07 Bilyaletdinov, 19 Gosling, 26 Rodwell, 22 Yakubu.

Ref: Walton Att: 45,708

Twelve months later the Toffees were hoping to arrest a poor run of results in recent months but were hopeful that they could continue their winning streak against Manchester City and as the BBC reported:

Everton arrived in Manchester without a win in the league in seven games, but with a fine record of three consecutive league victories at the City of Manchester Stadium.

In contrast, City had not lost in seven league matches and were looking to overtake league leaders Manchester United, who have played two games fewer owing to the postponement of ties with Blackpool and Chelsea in December. That fine run of form belied the internal upheaval that had surrounded the club since captain Carlos Tevez controversially slapped a transfer request on to manager Roberto Mancini's desk.

The striker missed City's midweek 1-1 Europa League draw with Juventus and it looked as though the want-away controversy would rumble on into tonight's tie with Everton. But so-called "clear the air" talks on Monday afternoon saw 26-year-old Tevez formally withdraw his request and Mancini rewarded the Argentine with a place in the starting line-up and the captain's armband.

As kick-off approached, it looked for all the world as if the skipper's turnaround would give the Blues the platform from which to launch their bid to overtake bitter rivals Manchester United at the top of the table. After all, having yet to lose a league game in which he had scored, Tevez had become an inspirational lucky charm for Mancini's side.

But when it comes to Eastlands, Everton boss David Moyes had his own lucky charm in the form of leading scorer Cahill. The Australian had scored two goals at City's ground in the past two seasons and he extended that record with just four minutes gone. Sole striker Anichebe played his part, flicking Baines's pass into the path of Seamus Coleman before Cahill promptly headed the Irishman's incisive cross beyond Joe Hart.

It was the 31-year-old Cahill's third goal in as many seasons at Eastlands and it was a dream start for the visitors, whose poor run of form had seen them skirt around the relegation zone for much of the season. Eager to put some distance between themselves and the bottom of the table, Everton pressed for a second and while defender Pablo Zabaleta was off the pitch with a head injury, Anichebe and Cahill combined again to create a second goal on 19 minutes.

Anichebe, in only his third league game this season, set off on a storming run down the left, crossing to Cahill who laid the ball neatly off to defender Baines who curled a shot beyond Hart. A stitched-up Zabaleta returned to the pitch minutes later and the Argentine quickly attempted to right the tie, crossing unmarked into the box to his fellow countryman Tevez, whose shot went behind for a corner.

City upped the pressure and absolutely peppered the Everton goal with shots for a short spell after the half hour, but the Toffees somehow kept out David Silva, Vincent Kompany and Mario Balotelli. Temperatures were dipping in the ground but City were anxious to put the heat on Everton's defence and Aleksander Kolorav almost beat Tim Howard but the Serbian's free-kick was narrowly deflected wide.

Zabaleta, despite the heavy strapping to his head, was proving to be City's best player as the half-time whistle approached, that plaudit definitely not falling to club captain Tevez, who was off the pace.

Mancini added Adam Johnson into the mix after the break, bringing off James Milner, and the England player offered greater width on the right.

Man City: 25 Hart 04 Kompany yellow card 05 Zabaleta 13 Kolarov 28 K Toure two yellow cards, red card 07 Milner (Johnson 46) 18 Barry yellow card 21 Silva 42 Y Toure 32 Tevez 45 Balotelli (Jo 83)
Subs: 01 Given, 02 Richards, 17 Boateng, 08 Wright-Phillips, 11 Johnson, 24 Vieira, 27 Jo

Everton 24 Howard 03 Baines 06 Jagielka (Hibbert 79) 15 Distin 18 Neville 23 Coleman (Saha 76) 17 Cahill 21 Osman (Bilyaletdinov 75) 25 Fellaini yellow card 26 Rodwell 28 Anichebe two yellow cards, red card
Subs: 01 Mucha, 02 Hibbert, 07 Bilyaletdinov, 08 Saha, 16 Beckford, 19 Gueye, 22 Yakubu

Ref: Walton Att: 45,028

Since that victory, Everton have only managed to take a single point from their visits to the home of Manchester City, while the Manchester club have won five domestic trophies during that period. In 2011 City beat Stoke City at Wembley to win the FA Cup – for the fifth time in their history – and a year later became English Champions for the first time since their triumph in 1968, in a dramatic last day in which City scored twice in the final throes of the campaign to rescue a victory against QPR, and thus overtake their rivals Manchester United.

City reached the FA Cup final again in 2013, however, Roberto Martinez’ Wigan Athletic stunned the football world by grabbing a last minute winner which led to Manchester City relieving Roberto Mancini of his duties as Chilean Manuel Pellegrini took his place in the Manchester City hot-seat. In Pellegrini's first season, City won the League Cup by beating Sunderland at Wembley and regained the Premier League title on the last day of the season by beating West Ham United 2-0.

Last time, as reported on the BBC website:

Manchester City ended Everton's unbeaten Premier League start with a stylish attacking victory that was the ideal response to the Champions League humbling against Bayern Munich.

Everton led a gripping match when Romelu Lukaku slipped the ball past under-pressure City keeper Joe Hart. But Alvaro Negredo equalised with a cool finish from Yaya Toure's pass. Sergio Aguero's low strike made it 2-1 and his penalty, which went in off Tim Howard's head, sealed the win.

The spot-kick, awarded after Seamus Coleman tangled with Pablo Zabaleta but hotly disputed by the visitors, was credited as an own goal to the unfortunate Howard as the ball hit the diving goalkeeper and crossed the line after initially striking the post.

Romelu Lukaku has scored seven goals in his last six Premier League appearances. The on-loan Chelsea striker has only played 302 minutes overall in that period, so averages a goal every 43 minutes.

Lukaku's goal was the first that Manchester City have conceded in the first half in the Premier this season.

It helped ensure City's fourth consecutive home league win, and the victory was a much-needed boost after the painful 3-1 defeat by Bayern on Wednesday and last week's shock league loss to Aston Villa.

But, as impressive as they were in attack, the defensive display in a thrillingly open first half will once again be questioned.

Vincent Kompany was the only player to keep his place in the starting back four from Wednesday and they lost their inspirational captain to what looked like a leg muscle injury after 33 minutes.

Everton had already looked a threat before then with the ever-impressive Ross Barkley, Steven Naismith and James McCarthy having the better of the midfield battle.

But it was the pace, power and direct running of Lukaku that was the focal point for their attacks.

England keeper Hart – so heavily criticised for his recent performances – did well to prevent Lukaku giving the visitors the lead with an early chance, but he was then beaten by the Belgian when the on-loan Chelsea striker nipped past Joleon Lescott and curled the ball home.

Hart got a strong touch but concerns over his attempt were soon forgotten as the home side levelled within 60 seconds.

Toure played a delightful pass behind Coleman, and Negredo slipped the ball home via a big deflection off the scrambling Howard.

Gareth Barry's absence had deprived Everton of their defensive shield and City began to exploit it ruthlessly.

A superb quick free-kick involving Toure and a beautiful first-time pass from David Silva should have seen City go ahead soon after, but Aguero placed his effort narrowly wide of the far post.

Argentine striker Aguero then made a mess of a great opportunity to get through one-on-one with Howard when he hopelessly miscontrolled a simple pass.

A victory for Manchester City, a first league defeat of the season for Everton and a really entertaining game. City keeper Joe Hart had a mixed afternoon. He would not have been happy with the goal he let in but he was fine after that. Alvaro Negredo's equaliser for City was the turning point and the home side deserved the win in the end.

However, after the hugely impressive Lukaku had a strong shout for a penalty ignored, Aguero made amends by giving City the lead with seconds of the first half remaining.

The excellent Silva, making his first league start since August, slid a perfectly weighted pass down the right-hand side of the box and Aguero struck a first-time shot across Howard and into the net.

Everton were unlucky to be trailing at the interval but that goal changed the complexion of the match and City's defensive display improved considerably.

The visitors would have gone up to second in the table with a win but barely threatened and it was the hosts who posed the far greater threat.

Howard's own goal from Aguero's low penalty gave them breathing space and they could have added to their margin of victory had the American goalkeeper not made fine saves from Negredo and Samir Nasri during a relatively incident-free second period.

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini - "I am very pleased by the character the team showed today. We really needed this victory because at the start of the game we were five points behind Arsenal and it is important to continue wining here at home."Equalising immediately was important but more important was the character, playing against Everton - the only unbeaten team in the league. "After a defeat on Wednesday it was important for me to see how the players reacted after that defeat.

"We had at least four or five clear chances to score and I don't remember Everton having too many chances to score, so I don't think the difference between the two teams was the penalty."

Everton manager Roberto Martinez - "We made it a really open game and to score the first goal was important. Then you have to be very superior when the calls are not going for you. Unfortunately, on the day, we didn't have that luck that we needed.

"I thought the penalty awarded is a football disaster. Jon Moss [referee] needs to watch it again and see why he gave it. Contact doesn't mean a penalty. If you are going to give a penalty for that it is going to make the game very difficult. "Romelu's is more of a penalty."

Lineup, Bookings (9) & Substitutions (6) Manchester City:01 Hart; 05 Zabaleta Booked,13 Kolarov (Clichy - 58' ), 25 Fernandinho Booked,04 Kompany Booked (Nastasic - 34' ),06 Lescott;07 Milner Booked,42 Yaya Touré,09 Negredo,16 Agüero (Nasri - 79' ),21 Silva Booked,02
Subs: 02 Richards 08 Nasri 10 Dzeko 15 JesĂşs Navas, 22 Clichy, 30 Pantilimon 33 Nastasic

Everton: 24 Howard Booked 23 Coleman Booked 03 Baines 21 Osman (Gibson 63) 06 Jagielka 15 Distin Booked 11 Mirallas (Deulofeu - 63) 16 McCarthy, 17 Lukaku (Koné - 82), 20 Barkley, 14 Naismith Booked
Subs: 01 Robles, 04 Gibson, 05 Heitinga, 07 Jelavic, 09 Koné, 10 Deulofeu, 26 Stones

Man City versus Everton Top Flight games only

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Tony Sullivan
1 Posted 05/12/2014 at 17:07:52
This regular trip down memory lane keeps taking me back to my childhood in the 50s.
I clearly remember being at the game at Maine Rd in 1958. We were having a poor season and there was no great expectation amongst the fans.

But Bobby Collins had arrived from Celtic. He was a revelation and inspired the 3-1 win. A very clever player with tiny but quick feet, became a Goodison favourite, but was prematurely sold to Leeds.

Thanks again Patrick for the trip.

Dave Abrahams
2 Posted 05/12/2014 at 17:45:16
Thanks again Patrick for another good history lesson.

I think the game in 1957, when we lost 6-2 was the game when Davie Hickson was sent off. Don Donavon the Everton captain had complained to the referee after City had scored their fifth goal that the lighting was poor and suggested that he needed to use a white ball. Davie said itÂ’s not a white ball he needs, itÂ’s a white stick. He was promptly sent off.

Patrick Murphy
4 Posted 09/12/2014 at 23:02:19
Dave - You are correct Dave Hickson was sent off in that match in the 68th minute - I can't confirm the reason, but your story sounds accurate. Dave ruffled a few feather among the purists at Goodison during his time at the club, especially in his early days. If you want to read about the early 1950s go to this site for details information about that period.

Everton Reports

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