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 Venue: Stefan cel Mare Stadium,
 Bucharest, Romania
Uefa Cup  Thursday 15 September 2005;
 7:45pm BST (8:45pm CET)
 Niculescu (28')
 Zicu (51')
 Petre (71')
 Bratu (73', 90')  
Half Time: 1-1
 
Yobo (30') 


 
 Attendance: 15,300 (UC1 1st Leg) Referee: G Paparesta (Ita)

Match Summary

A consignment of Everton fans bound for Romania missed this game completely because the air charter company their flight from Speke was arranged through went bust last night.  However, that may have proved to be a blessing for them.  Who'd be a traveling Evertonian, eh?  At least they should have been able to catch the slaughter live on the screens at Goodison Park.

The biggest surprise (shock?) in team selection was seeing Mikel Arteta moved to the bench (he has a stomach bug), although Ferguson being there with him is no surprise as Marcus Bent spearheads 4-5-1... with James McFadden given a start, after his improved showing against Portsmouth.  Perhaps he will play more forward than on the wing???

Ferrari is still being held in reserve as David Moyes elects to stick with his relatively solid defensive formation, Valente looking to consolidate his left-back role, while Phil Neville returns in the vital midfield holding slot after serving his one-match suspension.   Youngster Mark Hughes (no relation) gets his nominal senior baptism as one of at least four unused subs on the bench.

Everton started brightly and showed some decent intent, McFadden getting into the action, helping them win a couple of early corners.  McFadden won a dangerous free-kick from the ultra-fussy ref on the edge of the area that Davies lifted it too high and over the Dinamo goal.  Everton sensed nervousness in goalkeeper Gaev and the young Bucuresti back line, with Cahill charging down a clearance. 

Niculescu scored after the half-hour against the early run of play following a lightening attack down the right side. with Petra setting him up easily, and Yobo possibly at fault.  So all the good early work for naught...

But Everton, and especially Joseph Yobo, responded brilliantly, a great free kick from McFadden finding the Nigerian, who had escaped his marker to nod the ball down and over the line before Leon Osman banged it into the back of the Bucharest net.  An away goal!!!

Cahill then got shown a yellow card for a sliding challenge in which he may have put in both feet, but then the ref booked two Bucharest players inside a minute and awarded Everton a free-kick that Cahill fought for but could not convert.

Martyn made a vital stop to block a clever Niculescu lob after good work from the lively Zicu.  Everton withstood the challenge of a dangerous free-kick just before the break, as Bucharest demonstrated again that it was a little too easy for them to penetrate the Everton defence. 

But after the restart, Bucharest came at Everton strongly and it paid off after 6 mins when Niculescu shot was deflected and Zicu could slide in their second goal.  Niculescu went off soon after with what looked like a dislocated shoulder, but replacement Bratu ensured the pressure on the Everton goal continued.

After Everton revived briefly, some excellent approach play cut through the Everton defence with Bratu setting it up on a plate for Petre who slices it firmly past Nigel Martyn for a daunting third goal.  Moyes's response was to haul off Simon Davies, who appeared to have worked hard and kept possession in the middle of the field, to bring on the Killa Kilbane... the only killer aspect being the current and seemingly lasting death of the Irish international's club form.

Another sweeping attack saw three red shirts converge on Nigel Martyn and Bratu smashed home a deadly fourth goal.  Criminal defending by Everton demonstrated in spades yet again.  On came Duncan Ferguson, presumably with the intent of scoring some much-needed Everton goals...

In the last few minutes a great header from Ferguson off a superb corner from McFadden almost forced a second Everton goal but Gaev was equal to it, saving well.  Bratu then went up the other end to underline an unbelievable scoreline in Bucharest's favour.  Oh deary, deary me.  What a European catastrophe of the very worst order.  Yes, indeed; we really were havin' a laff.

Next up: Arsenal... at Highbury!

Michael Kenrick


Match Preview

The European Tour continues, albeit at a slightly lower level of prestige, as Everton enter the Uefa Cup for the first time in 26 years.  After all the optimism surrounding the Blues' Champions League qualification back in May, it's a little disappointing that we go into this first round, first leg match fretting about the team's ability to score goals — let alone win matches.

The debate surrounding 4-5-1 versus 4-4-2 will no doubt rumble on for weeks as David Moyes struggles to find an attacking combination that will score the goals his side desperately needs in the Premiership, but this away leg is going to be all about containment and that means a cast-iron guarantee of the manager starting with a five-man midfield.

Phil Neville's return from suspension will be the key, as will his European experience and that of Nuno Valente whose proclamation upon signing that "Everton are ambitious" will be sorely tested if the Blues don't come away from Rumania with a respectable result and a fighting chance of making the group stages of the Uefa Cup in the return match at Goodison.

With James Beattie staying behind on Merseyside after a 45-minute run out for the Reserves this week, confirming that he is not yet fit enough to lead the line, Duncan Ferguson is almost certainly dropped to the bench, and Marcus Bent will once again get the job of lone striker in front of a mystifyingly one-dimensional midfield.  It's a role that the forward has found increasingly frustrating, with poor service from the players behind him visibly annoying him in recent matches.


James Beattie: The scorer of Everton's first Europran goal this season didn't make it through a 45-minute run-out for the Reserves this week and misses the trip to Bucharest
image© evertonfc.com, used by kind permission

That midfield could well be stripped of Tim Cahill whose World Cup qualifying exploits and the globe-trotting that comes with it have sapped his energy and left him in desperate need of a rest.  Leon Osman could deputise for the Australian, either in central midfield or with Simon Davies moving inside.  Mikel Arteta will once again carry the fans' hopes for creativity while Kevin Kilbane must start showing the form that earned him rave reviews two seasons ago rather than the abysmal performances he has been turning in so far this term — displays reminiscent of the worst of his Sunderland days...

At the back is where Moyes may contemplate making one change, offering Matteo Ferrari a senior debut, seeing as though David Weir has been ever-present so far and struggled against Villarreal's pace in the Champions League.

Given the Blues' current crisis of form and confidence, a draw should be their objective and probably the most they can hope for.  Keeping it tight at the back and hoping to make set-pieces pay will likely be central to Moyes's strategy in that regard.  Brimming with creativity and attacking football they won't be but, if Everton can rediscover some of the form that fired them into European competition in the first place last season, they should get the result they need despite what promises to be an intimidating atmosphere.

Dinamo Bucharest may not carry the prestige of neighbours Steaua, but they should not be underestimated; Rumanian sides are notoriously technically proficient and Dinamo have more than enough ability to punish Moyes's side for any sloppiness or lapses in concentration.

By the same token, this match offers another opportunity for the Blues to shake off the malaise that has taken hold of their season and resulted in six defeats out of seven games.  A win by a single goal margin — which also means one or more precious away goals — and suddenly the pressure is off before the terrifying trip to Highbury next week.

Lyndon Lloyd


Matchday Stats

This will be the first meeting between Everton and Dynamo Bucharest in European competition.  However, the sides have previously met on 7 June 1961 when Everton won 4-0 in the American based International Soccer League, with Bobby Collins, Jimmy Gabriel (2) and Jimmy Fell scoring the Everton goals.  This will be the first time Everton have faced Romanian opposition in Europe also.

Everton's full record in Europe is:

 

P

W

D

L

F

A

European Cup

10

2

5

3

14

10

European CWC

17

11

4

2

25

9

Fairs Cup

12

7

2

3

22

15

Uefa Cup

8

3

1

4

12

5

TOTALS:

47

23

12

12

73

39

Our record away in Europe is:

 

P

W

D

L

F

A

European Cup

5

1

2

2

5

4

European CWC

8

3

3

2

6

5

Fairs Cup

6

2

2

2

9

9

Uefa Cup

4

1

0

3

5

3

TOTALS:

23

7

7

9

25

21

There have been just 2 Everton hat-tricks in Europe over the years.  The first was by Alan Ball in the 6-2 win against IB Keflavik in the European Cup on 16 September 1970.  The only other European hat-trick was scored by Andy Gray on 6 March 1985 in the 3-0 win at home to Fortuna Sittard.  In fact, Andy Gray’s hat-trick was the only one he scored for the club during his time here.

The most common victory for Everton is 1-0 which has happened 5 times in Everton's 23 European victories.  Everton’s most common defeat in Europe is 0-1, which has happened 6 times in their 12 defeats. The most common European draw 0-0, which has also happened 7 times in the 12 draws in total.

Everton's record for 15 September is:

 

P

W

D

L

F

A

Premier League

2

1

0

1

4

5

Division One

17

7

4

6

28

27

Division Two

1

0

0

1

1

3

League Cup

1

0

1

0

1

1

TOTALS:

20

10

3

7

33

26

This is the first time Everton have played a European match on this day.  The last match Everton played on this day was in 2001 when they suffered a 3-1 defeat at the hands of Liverpool.

Fred Leeder was born on this day in 1936 in Seaton Delaval.  Signing on as a professional in March 1955, Fred made just 1 appearance at left back against Chelsea in January 1958.  He later moved on to Darlington and then Southport in the early 1960’s

Dave Clements was also born on this day in 1945 in Larne, Northern Ireland.  Signed from Sheffield Wednesday in September 1973 for 100,000 Dave went on to make 102 appearances for the club and scored 8 goals, before moving on to play for New York Cosmos in the now-defunct North American Soccer League.  During his time with the club, Dave was also appointed manager of Northern Ireland.

Joe Mercer and Tommy Lawton played for England in their 1-0 war international victory against Northern Ireland on this day in 1945.

Steve Flanagan



Report

Lyndon Lloyd

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D BUCHAREST(4-4-2)
  Gaev
  Goian :36'
  Tamas
  Moti
  Pulhac
  Petre (82' Galamaz)
  Margaritescu
  Plesan
  Rigorie :35'
  Zicu
  Niculescu (61' Bratu)
  Subs not used
  Guso
  Baltoi
  Cristea
  (78' Munteanu)
  Balan
 
EVERTON (4-5-1)
  Martyn
  Hibbert
  Yobo
  Weir
  Valente
  Neville
  Davies (72' Kilbane)
  Cahill :33'
  Osman
  McFadden (78' Ferguson)
  Bent
Subs not used
  Wright
  Ferrari
  Li Tie (unfit)
  Arteta (unfit)
  Hughes
  Unavailable
  Naysmith (injured)
  Krøldrup (injured)
  Carsley (injured)
  Beattie (injured)
  Pistone (injured)
  Vaughan (injured)
  Van der Meyde (injured)

Uefa Cup Scores
Thursday 15 Sep 2005
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