Blues lose in U21s Premier League Cup

, 9 February, 11comments  |  Jump to most recent
Everton took on Brighton and Hove Albion in the Round of 16 at the Merseyrail Community Stadium this evening but lost on penalties after the game finished 2-2 after extra time.

David Unsworth's team included Brazilian fullback Felipe Mattioni, Matty Foulds, Leandro Rodriguez and captain Joe Williams.

Striker Sam Byrne opened the scoring five minutes before half time to give Everton the lead with an assist by Rodriguez.

Brighton equalised in second-half stoppage time, however, through Barnett which forced extra time just when it looked as though the Blues were going through.

Jack Harper put the visitors ahead nine minutes into the first half of extra-time but Everton reclaimed parity thanks to a penalty scored by Williams.

And the hosts were handed another boost when Brighton skipper Glen Rea was sent off for two bookable offences midway through extra time.

They were unable to capitalise on the extra man, however and misses by Williams and Davies in the decisive shootout saw Brighton through 4-2 on penalties.

Everton: Gray, Mattioni, Foulds, Davies, Pennington, Connolly, Dowell, Williams (c), Dyson, Rodriguez, Byrne.
Subs: Griffiths, C. Duffus, Charsley, Evans, Feeney.


Reader Comments (11)

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Anthony Dwyer
1 Posted 09/02/2016 at 23:39:49
Mattoini could save us a few quid if he stays fit.
Harold Matthews
2 Posted 10/02/2016 at 07:59:08
I believe we were much the better side in terrible weather conditions.

For our 1st goal, Leandro received the ball off Mattioni before racing forward to set up Byrne. He was subbed 8 minutes after the break and I hope his hamstring hasn't gone again.

Looking forward to the John Dean TW report.

John Dean
3 Posted 10/02/2016 at 09:36:55
The young Blues will be feeling a bit sorry for themselves this morning as they lost this cup game, a game they could easily have won.

Everton played a 4-2-4 formation with Pennington and Connolly at the centre of defence, Mattioni and Foulds at fullback, Davies and Williams in midfield and McDowell leftwing, Byrne rightwing and Rodriguez and Dyson in the centre. The playing surface was very heavy, sanded in parts, didn't take a stud and it was difficult to weight a pass – a real test.

The blues held the advantage on possession and chances in the first half, taking the lead when a Brighton attack was stopped and the ball was fed to Leandro who carried it forward before finding Sam Byrne on the left of the penalty box who then ran along the edge of the box before hooking a shot into the bottom corner.

The second-half continued in the same vein with Everton doing all the pressing and using the long-ball a bit more than usual, perhaps to catch the Brighton defence turning on a slippery pitch and to overcome our numbers deficit in midfield. From corners, Calum Connolly headed just wide and Pennington powered a header to the bottom corner which the keeper did exceptionally well to turn round the post. Harry Charsley replaced Byrne and supplied a string of good crosses into the box but we couldn't take advantage. Then, game seemingly won, Pennington's tackle was deemed illegal and the subsequent beautifully-flighted cross was headed home.

That gave Brighton a boost and they charged into extra-time, taking the lead when Louis Gray tried to pass the ball rather than hoof a back-pass clear of the danger area. His pass was well-controlled by a Brighton player who went forward before hitting a powerful shot which Gray's hand was unable to turn round the post. Everton were soon on level terms when a penalty was awarded for pushing in the box and Joe Williams hit it hard and low into the corner of the net. Again, Everton had the best of the remaining action but there were no more goals and Brighton hit all of their penalties well but Williams and Connolly's efforts were well saved.

Shortly into the second-half, Leandro was brought down from behind in full flight and was substituted almost immediately so his worries continue. A pity as he was shaping well - he showed his speed off the mark to burst into the box and pull the ball back but Byrne's shot was blocked.

Its the first time I have seen Mattioni. He was very good on the ball and was prominent in attack. He has a disconcertingly slow trot back to his defensive position, even when the play is way beyond him. You could frequently hear Matt Pennington and Joe Williams telling Felippe to adopt a better position at corners, etc but he seemed a bit lost and I wonder if he thinks that's the lesser side of his job. But he lasted the full game and a half despite him just recovering from injury.

Matty Foulds had an excellent game. He has lovely ball control, sound defence and showed well and effectively going forward.

Harold Matthews
4 Posted 10/02/2016 at 11:14:03
John. The other reports say Williams and Davies missed from the spot.

Shame about the result. Oviedo tweeted them "Good Luck" before kickoff and Unsy told them they need to win things if they had any hope of getting into the first team.

A £200mil club using a seaside mud patch as their U21s home ground is a disgrace. I'll bet Brighton loved it.

John Dean
5 Posted 10/02/2016 at 11:53:52
The other reports are right, Harold, it was Davies' kick that was saved - Connolly scored the first one (I was getting a bit cold and ready for home by that time and my memory is the first thing to shrink in the cold, well second).

The lads couldn't be faulted for effort. I thought they'd moved on from the last few seasons when they haven't looked like a side with strikers who can score but perhaps we weren't as sharp as we should have been in front of goal last night. And if I was a Brighton fan, I'd doubtless be lauding their defensive display.

But mostly I blame the pitch. The u18's must be glad they play at Finch Farm or Goodison.

When the yanks finally join the war, late as usual, I'm sure a new Little League ground will be high on their shopping agenda just after the hamburger concession is sorted, the ticket prices go up and we start playing real soccer.

Mike Hayes
6 Posted 10/02/2016 at 14:00:27
I was there last night – good match but a terrible pitch that caused both teams problems with slipping when in good moves. The U21s played well, dominating the whole match but were IMHO robbed by the free kick that Pennington was involved in – fair tackle.

The best team lost. Hopefully they can pick themselves up for the next two home games as they all played together well, Pennington showing his maturity.

Get ready for the Lancashire Senior Cup, which could be Man Utd or Blackpool, fingers crooked for that. Also, as I like to collect their photos and autographs, these lads, especially Matty Pennington oblige without complaint and will chat about the match even in the cold.

They are great guys and I wish them well for the future, be it at EFC or wherever their talents take them

Dave Abrahams
7 Posted 10/02/2016 at 16:14:56
A good point by Harold about playing on a mud heap, I wouldn't want to take anything from Southport,financially, but it can't help these young lads playing on this pitch, and (Selfishly) I could watch the matches at Goodison,

I think the team might be missing the likes of Ledson, Kenny Grant and Walsh, but I think these lads will be learning and improving on loan.

I don't understand David Unsworth telling the lads they have to be winning trophies if they want to get in the first team, you can be a great player and win nothing, or you can win cups and be a less than average player, all they have to do is improve season by season.

Harold Matthews
8 Posted 11/02/2016 at 11:27:51
Yes Dave, I see Kenny put in a great cross for the 1st Oxford goal the other night.
Dave Abrahams
9 Posted 11/02/2016 at 11:34:47
Yes Harold, Jonjoe will do well down at Oxford and they will take to him down there, a wholehearted player with plenty of skill.

Who would have thought it a Kirkdale lad doing very well at Oxford, haven’t we got a lad at Cambridge as well!!!

John Dean
10 Posted 11/02/2016 at 13:30:12
Liam Walsh has ’comfortably’ won the Ciderspace MotM award for their game away to Luton, scoring his first goal at this level, the second time in 3 matches he has won the award.
Harold Matthews
11 Posted 11/02/2016 at 18:42:33
Yes, two good lads and Lundstram was Oxford's player of the month not long ago.

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