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Venue: Goodison Park
Premier League
Saturday 9 April 2022; 12:30pm
1 0
Man United
Gordon 27'
Half Time: 1 - 0 
Attendance: 39,080
Fixture 30
Referee: Jonathan Moss

Match Reports
2021-22 Reports Index
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  Pickford booked
  Delph (Doucouré 84')
  Gordon booked
  Calvert-Lewin (Gray 71')
  Subs not used
  Van de Beek (ineligible)
  Davies (injured)
  Mina (injured)
  Patterson (injured)
  Townsend (injured)
  Broadhead (loan)
  Gbamin (loan)
  Kean (loan)
  Nkounkou (loan)
  Simms (loan)
  Virginia (loan)

  De Gea
  Matic (Mata 64')
  Fred (Pogba 36' booked)
  Ronaldo booked
  Rashford (Elanga 64')
  Subs not used

Match Stats

Shots on target

Premier League Scores
Newcastle 1-0 Wolves
Arsenal 1-2 Brighton
Aston Villa 0-4 Tottenham
Everton 1-0 Man United
Southampton 0-6 Chelsea
Watford 0-3 Leeds
Brentford 2-0 West Ham
Leicester 2-1 C Palace
Man City 2-2 Liverpool
Norwich 2-0 Burnley

1 Manchester City 74
2 Liverpool 73
3 Chelsea 62
4 Tottenham Hotspur 57
5 Arsenal 54
6 West Ham United 51
7 Manchester United 51
8 Wolverhampton Wanderers 49
9 Leicester City 40
10 Crystal Palace 37
11 Brighton & Hove Albion 37
12 Aston Villa 36
13 Brentford 36
14 Southampton 36
15 Newcastle United 34
16 Leeds United 33
17 Everton 28
18 Burnley 24
19 Watford 22
20 Norwich City 21

Match Report

The title of a recent episode of the ToffeeWeb Podcast suggested that Evertonians were on a “rollercoaster from hell” courtesy of their team and, on the basis of the past four days, the ride is still going. At least going into this latest 11-day hiatus before Everton play next, supporters are on the upswing again following a 1-0 victory that could prove to be massive in terms of the club’s bid for Premier League survival this season.

Much has been made of the mentality of the Blues’ players as they have sunk like a stone to the depths of the table since making that fine start to the campaign way back in August but it is to their enormous credit that despite a short turnaround from the pain of a shock defeat at 9:30pm on Wednesday evening to a 12:30 kick-off today they managed to turn in a terrific performance and grind out three vital points.

Once again, bipolar Everton was in evidence — shaky, fragile and error-ridden at Turf Moor, where they threw away precious points and, potentially, handed the psychological advantage to Burnley in the respective clubs’s hopes of avoiding relegation to the Championship, to tenacious, obdurate and undaunted against a side supposedly chasing Champions League football.

Manchester United’s lack of inspiration under Ralf Rangnick’s interim stewardship has been well documented by media interests who obsess over the so-called big six and their lacklustre showing will no doubt be harped on in the days to come. Certainly, Gary Neville minced no words in describing them as “a joke”; David de Gea used the word “a disgrace” while Rangnick himself lamented his team’s failure to score against a team that had shipped three at Burnley in midweek.

While understandable, they undermine Everton’s efforts in becoming the first team this season to stop United from scoring on their travels in the Premier League. This was a display reminiscent of the Blues of seasons in past when a “big” team comes to Goodison Park — disciplined, resolute and spurred on by a raucous home crowd. The game against Newcastle, the Toffees’ last win before today, was decided by a solitary moment of penetration and, in truth, Everton didn’t create many more clear-cut moments this afternoon. But they didn’t have to.

Once they had been given the lead courtesy of Anthony Gordon’s 27th-minute strike and a touch of overdue fortune, they dug in and frustrated the visitors, to the extent that Cristiano Ronaldo (surely as anonymous as a player of his calibre has ever been at Goodison) left the field in a strop and took his annoyance out on a fan as he hobbled down the tunnel pointing at a gash in his shin.

Much was down to the return of both Allan and Fabian Delph who provided the platform in midfield for Alex Iwobi to have, arguably, his best game since joining Everton from Arsenal three years ago. It wasn’t his most effective from an attacking point of view but his sheer determination and willingness to cover almost every blade of grass was incredible, an individual effort summed up by a photograph that went viral on social media afterwards of the Nigerian on his knees with fists clenched in celebration at the final whistle.

After having to sit out for three matches due to a suspension that feels more and more harsh with the passage of time — not to mention other worse challenges by players playing for the right clubs to get preferential treatment from Stockley Park — Allan was at his best levels in the middle of the park but Delph was superb for his first 80 minutes of action in four months.

Vitalii Mykolenko, meanwhile, built on the Wednesday’s display with his most impressive performance yet that suggests that, after a difficult transition from his native Ukraine, he is finally getting to grips with life in the Premier League. Together with Seamus Coleman’s return on the other side of defence that allowed the struggling Jonjoe Kenny to drop back to the bench and a match-winning contribution from Jordan Pickford and Lampard had the ingredients he needed for a fifth home win in seven in all competitions since taking charge.

Everton betrayed a few nerves in the early going with Michael Keane, back in the line-up after serving a one-game ban, having a particularly bad first 20 minutes before he eventually settled and it was the visitors who carried the early threat. A poor clearing header by Delph ended with Marcus Rashford testing Pickford with a low shot that the England goalkeeper did well to push behind before a sloppy ball by Keane allowed Bruno Fernandes to cross for Rashford who prompted an even better stop from Pickford.

Everton steadied themselves, however, and when Richarlison chased down a ball into the channel and his cut-back came off a United defender and fell to Gordon, the winger fired goal-wards and profited from a heavy deflection of Harry Maguire that diverted the ball past De Gea.

Keane went close with a header that flew over off a Gordon free-kick following handball by Nemanja Matic and Richarlison forced a good save from De Gea when his shot took a deflection off a defender's boot and was spinning under the crossbar until the Spaniard palmed it over.

Mykolenko, who typified the Blues' dogged rearguard action, had to head a dangerous Alex Telles cross over his own bar and then block another cross behind as United pressed in the closing stages of the first half but Everton were able to take their advantage into the break.

The second half was all about Everton defending their slender lead, frustrating their more talented opposition and trying to nick something on the break to give themselves a bigger cushion.

Fernandes almost found Rashford with an impressive deep ball into the Blues' box but the England striker just failed to get a crucial touch on it while, at the other end, a succession of Everton corners and balls across the face of goal by Mykolenko and Gordon failed to find Blue jerseys.

Ralf Rangnick's side needed a victory to keep their dwindling Champions League hopes alive and they maintained the pressure into the final 10 minutes, with Pickford getting down low to save from Paul Pogba, substitute Demarai Gray making a last-ditch block to deny Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Pickford then pulling off a vital reflex save with his arm to divert Cristiano Ronaldo's shot wide of goal in stoppage time.

Given the stakes and United’s dominance of the ball, this was a tortuous watch in the closing stages and if it weren’t for that excellent reaction save, Everton might have had two points ripped away from them. They deserved the victory, though — for the strength of character they showed after Wednesday, for their determination to keep the visitors at bay and for making the Red Devils look so ordinary.

Beyond that, though, Lampard will have a growing sense of his strongest system and line-up and it must centre around Delph and Allan going forward, with Iwobi and Donny van de Beek providing different options as the third, more attacking option in the middle three.

With Yerry Mina hopefully added to the ranks by the time the Blues next play, against Leicester on 20th April, Everton might actually be getting close to something resembling full-strength which can only bolster their chances of racking up enough points to achieve safety over the remaining eight games.

Lyndon Lloyd

Matchday Updates

It was a massive massive day at Goodison Park and a Gordon's deflected shot was the only goal in Everton's lethargic struggle to stay in the Premier League with an erratic Manchester United side defeated in a vibrant bear-pit atmosphere at The Old Lady.

But of most concern for some going into this game were suggestions emanating from an unnamed senior journalist, and put about by senior Everton fans, that members of the Everton squad don't think manager Frank Lampard is up to the job.

If true, such a shocking lack of faith and belief in the manager should come as no surprise from this group of players who have performed dismally through these recent weeks, displaying so little effort and desire that has resolutely denied him little by way of a "new manager" bounce. But it fatally undermines all the good faith, outstanding support, and perennial belief in "hope eternal" that the fans are digging deep to produce in a valiant effort to get them over the line.

Such heart-breaking revelations notwithstanding, Everton welcome back both Michael Keane and Allan from suspension but Donny van de Beek is missing as he can't play against his parent club.

Dominic Calvert-Lewin, on whom such great hopes were placed when he returned to the side after 4 months out injured… his current form is simply incomprehensible — to the point where his disinterested attitude has to be seriously questioned. Has his head been turned? A reasonable supposition based on his increasingly dire performances. In which case, he should not be playing… but he is, with Rondon, who seems to now have a far better sense of where the goal is, remaining on the bench, where there are no young players from the U23s.

Calvert-Lewin set things off and Everton pushed into the visitors' half but Gordon misplaced what could have been a key pass out to the right.

Everton had most of the early possession but sloppy passes did nothing to help them approach the Man Utd area. Allan had to defend well to prevent Telles from crossing.

Keane went in very late on Telles, who left his foot in to catch the Everton player's calf and make it look a lot worse than it was. But it was a dangerous free-kick, Fernades pushed it to the far post and Rashord's shot needed saving. From the corner, it came around to Ronaldo with a fierce first-time strike but he was ruled offside.

Keane gave the ball away in midfield and it saw Pickford produce a fine save low down to stop Rashford's header. Everton continued to give the ball up cheaply, Keane having to whip the ball off Ronaldo's toes as he was making to shoot. Everton were being increasingly pushed back mainly through their own inability to provide any continuity to their forward play.

Everton broke from a smart Pickford roll-out and Iwobi's fast running but Richarlison made a complete dog's dinner of his pass. Delph saw a chance for Mykolenko to overlap but Wan-Bissaka had the measure of him. Wan-Bissaka came through Richarlison from behind, normally a yellow card, but not from Jon Moss.

Another comedy of errors from Keane and Delph slipping saw Fernandes gallop forward but the cross was poor. United continued to press with minimal effect. Iwobi pushed forward again but Calvert-Lewin overlapping crossed straight to a defender.

Delph tried to pick out Richarlison but overhit his adventurous forward ball. In truth, both teams were playing poorly, non more so than Calvert Lewin. But Everton pushed forward but Allan lost possession... then Gordon won it back well of Matic but overhit his pass out to Richarlison who, nevertheless recovered and crossed in Iwobi forcing a mistake that saw the ball screw out to Anthony Gordon who took a shot at goal and scored with a massive deflection off Maguire. Beautiful!

A free-kick for handball saw Gordon curl in a shot that Keane stooped to head over the bar. Telles got past Gordon too easily and his low cross was very well cleared by Godfrey.

Another free-ick, awarded for a high foot on Iwobi, saw Gordon swing in another from further out, but Man Utd defended it and the following phase. Pickford had to come out and punch the ball off Matic's head before

Richarlison made space for himself and the pace was taken out of his shot a little by a deflection, allowing De Gea to palm it behind for an Everton corner, but Everton could not fashion a clear-cut chance. Pogba replaced Fred.

Everton had to defend solidly under repeated advances by the Red Devils. Mykolenko was having a good game getting into key locations and making crucial interventions. He was forced to head a dangerous cross behind for a Man Utd corner that they wasted. Mykolenko then did well to win a corner at the other end but it led to nothing as Everton went in with the lead.

After the restart, Richarlison was fouled and Mykolenko did well to beat a defender and cross in low for Calvert-Lewin to watch from his useless position behind the defender. The Reds attacked and won a corner that was defended well enough.

A very clever ball from Fernandes almost fell for Rashford who was allowed in on goal but bounced through harmlessly. Pogba scythed down Gordon for a yellow card.

Everton won a corner for Gordon to deliver. It was decent enough but Maguire headed it away powerfully. Mykolenko did brilliantly to force Wan-Bissaka to give away another corner that was put in a bit behind Godfrey as he headed it over.

Richarlison did superbly to deny Wan-Bissaka and force the counter-attack upfield. Mykolenko was clipped as he crossed in for Gordon. Richarlison pursued the follow up and won another corner, Calvert-Lewin beaten to the ball.

Delp was playing very well in midfield, but Richarlisn spoilt the move with a pass too short for Mykolenko. But Everton were doing well to limit Man Utd's movement, Godfrey clearing well in defence.

Delph was very effective in cutting out a pass with a low tackle in the Everton box, at the expense of a corner that Everton defended while under some pressure. Keane had to head away a dangerous cross as Man Utd ramped up the pressure through the hour-mark.

Elanga came on with Mata but his first cross was into the side-netting. Lampard showed no sign of making any changes. Man Utd tried to pass their way through the Everton defence that was holding firm so far. Calvert-Lewin was fouled by Pogba.

Calvert-Lewin finally did something good, helping to steal the ball but Gordon's cross should have been turned in and wasn't and Everton were under pressure again, Godfrey clearing for another Man Utd corner. Gordon cleared for a second corner that came closest to being converted, Mata firing over. Calvert-Lewin was replaced by Gray.

Man Utd kept pushing up but were meant by plenty of blue shirts. Delph found Gordon with a great ball wide right but Gordon could not beat his marker. Gordon slipped over going in on Sancho and saw yellow.

Gordon, competing for a ball with Telles in the Man Utd area, felt an arm on his back and collapsed in a heap, impressing the Gwladys Street but not Jon Moss. Man Utd continued to build attack after attack but Everton were holding on, Richarlison buying a free-kick. But the pressure resumed, Pickford getting down to stop a decent shot from Pogba.

The Man Utd pressure into the last 10 minutes was relentless, with Delph starting to pull up. Another attack saw Wan-Bissaka blocked by Gray and Mykolenko. Doucouréreplaced Delph, and was given a decent ovation for a good performance.

Iwobi was another who had put in a lot more effort and shown a lot more desire than we are accustomed to. He and Gray tried to run through four Man Utd defenders but they were thwarted. Picked was booked for time-wasting.

With the minutes ticking down in the Goodison sunshine, the crowd was cheering everything that went Everton's way as 5 minutes of added time went up.

Coleman went on a mazey run but could not play in Iwobi. At the other end, Ronaldo gt a very dangerous shot that Pickford just about saved, the Reds claiming handball off Keane.

Everton tried to keep the ball upfield in the tense dying minutes but Pickford came out to punch clear. Man Utd try again and again but Jon Moss finally blues the whistle on a very precious Everton win.

Kick-off: 12:30 pm BST, Saturday 9 April 2022 on BT Sport 1

Everton: Pickford [Y:85'] , Coleman, Keane, Mykolenko, Godfrey, Allan, Delph (84' Doucouré), Iwobi, Gordon [Y:76'], Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin (71' Gray).
Subs: Begovic, Kenny, Holgate, Gomes, Branthwaite, Rondon, Dele Alli.

Man Utd: De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Telles, Matic (64' Mata), Fred (36' Pogba [Y:51']), Fernandes, Sancho, Rashford (64' Elanga), Ronaldo. [Y:86']
Subs: Heaton, Henderson, Jones, Dalot, Mejbri, Lingard.

Referee: Jonathon Moss
VAR: Andy Madley

Michael Kenrick

Match Preview

When the topic of longevity in England's top flight comes up in the media, it's usually Arsenal who are lauded for having the longest unbroken sequence without getting relegated; another slight on Everton's proud record of having played more seasons in the top division of the world's oldest football league than any other club.

Founder members of that League in 1888 and the Premier League 104 years later, the Toffees have spent just four seasons outside the top flight in their 144-year history. Given how competitive English football is, that is a remarkable achievement but it is in very real danger of being sullied in the most heartbreaking fashion this season.

For the first time in 24 years, Everton are staring relegation from the Premier League square in the face. Incredibly, they have yet to fall into the bottom three this season but a mind-boggling inability lately to win matches, pick up so much as a point away from home or, all too often, simply do the basics as a team mean that the ignominy of occupying the relegation places can't be too far away, this for a side that sat in second place in the table just 16 months ago.

Wednesday's defeat snatched from the jaws of victory at Burnley was a gut-punch for supporters for whom the threat of the drop has now become all too real. How the players react having thrown away a gilt-edged chance to give themselves some breathing room at the bottom is now absolutely key.

The Blues have nine matches left — almost a quarter of a season — to find a way to pick up enough points to avoid the drop. Crucially, while trips to Anfield and the Emirates Stadium seem almost like exercises in futility, they have five games at home, all of them winnable given the personnel at Frank Lampard's disposal. Whether they have the belief and, as the manager put it, “the bollocks” to win them remains to be seen.

Lampard has tinkered, chopped and changed his personnel since coming on board at the end of January, with no success on the road but he can at least point to some good performances at Goodison Park under his stewardship, against Brentford in the FA Cup and Leeds and Manchester City in the League. The stirring win over Newcastle may not have come from the best of displays but it was the result of sheer heart on the part of the players. They are going to need spades more of that in the matches to come.

Lampard eschewed his desired passing game completely at Burnley and more of such pragmatism — married with a bit more guile in midfield now that Fabian Delph looks capable of starting after four months out injured — should be the order of the day against Manchester United on Saturday.

The error-strewn and worryingly open defence that has shipped so many goals away from Goodison, surely calls for a return to Carlo Ancelotti's preferred back line stuffed with central defenders — the one featuring Mason Holgate and Ben Godfrey as full-backs that was so successful at times in his only full campaign in charge.

It might be a touch conservative for a home game against an uninspired United but Lampard would be well served by at least returning Godfrey to the left full-back role he fulfilled against Newcastle while Seamus Coleman returns at right-back.

In midfield, Allan will make a hugely welcome return from his harsh three-match suspension and could form a decent partnership in central midfield where Donny van de Beek will be missing as he can't play against his parent club.

That just leaves the question of Abdoulaye Doucouré. The newly-minted Mali international has looked tired and ineffective recently and could probably use a break, most likely replaced by Alex Iwobi, but, if he does play, he will benefit from having that additional body alongside him in central midfield.

As ever, there are conundrums for Lampard in the attacking areas where he has a number of options but increasing doubts over the effectiveness of Dominic Calvert-Lewin who was very nearly upstaged by the much-maligned Salomon Rondon's only chance at Turf Moor after he came on as an 87th-minute substitute. Calvert-Lewin has struggled for form since returning from a nasty injury and whether it's confidence or an inability to get back to true sharpness, it seems that for now, if the manager is to deploy a second striker alongside Richarlison, the Venezuelan is arguably the better bet.

Then it's a question of whether Anthony Gordon, who has run himself ragged for the cause for weeks now and could be asked to play again on a short turnaround, or the off-form Demarai Gray fills the other wide role, assuming Iwobi plays deeper and more central as he has in the last two games.

Whomever is selected, the team will need to dig deep for the self-belief, composure and desire that will be required to pull off what would be another hugely morale-boosting win this weekend and set themselves up for another home game against Leicester 11 days later, by which point Yerry Mina may be ready to step back into central defence.

This is the kind of fixture that Everton are usually up for and their performances against supposed “big six” opposition have been encouraging. They have demonstrated that they have the ability but do they have the mental fortitude in the face of mounting pressure and danger? Close to 40,000 baying Evertonians will be praying they do.

For the sake of those long-suffering fans and this once-great club's longstanding membership of England's top flight, just win, Everton. Just win.

Kick-off: 12:30 pm BST, Saturday 9 April 2022 on BT Sport 1
Referee: Jonathon Moss
VAR: Andy Madley
Last Time: Everton 1 - 3 Manchester United

Predicted Line-up: Pickford, Coleman, Keane, Branthwaite, Godfrey, Allan, Delph, Iwobi, Gordon, Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin

Lyndon Lloyd

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