<% Dim oMRTCs, oMRTRs, strSQL set oMRTCs = server.createobject("ADODB.Connection") oMRTCs.Open "Driver={Microsoft Excel Driver (*.xls)}; DBQ=" & Server.MapPath("/season/06-07/data") & "/premtable.xls;" strSQL = "SELECT * FROM [Summary$] ORDER BY Pos, Team ;" Set oMRTRs = oMRTCs.Execute(strSQL) %> ToffeeWeb: Season 2006-07 - Everton vs Liverpool
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Venue: Goodison Park, Liverpool
Premiership
 Saturday 9 Sept 2006; 12:45pm
Cahilh (24'), Johnson (36', 94')
Half Time: 2-0
Attendance: 40,004
Fixture 4
Referee: Graham Poll (Tring)

Match Summary

After the scintillating passing football at White Hart Lane, a reversion to kick and rush was inevitable in this derby fixture which saw a buoyant Everton taking on a supposedly very strong Liverpool team.  The first half was Liverpool's in terms of possession... but what do we care? Because excellent opportunist goals taken by Tim Cahill and Andy Johnson gave Everton a very pleasing 2-0 scoreline at the half.

Frenetic football did not serve Everton all that well, despite a lively start.  Liverpool seemed able to soak up all of the lofted balls, be they massive goal-kicks from Howard, stock clearances from the Everton back four, or deft chips into the Liverpool area from Arteta.  But it was fairly innocuous-looking attacks that led to both of Everton's all-important first-half goals that effectively knocked the stuffing out of kopites.

The first came from an attack down the right in which some good movement by Johnson and Arteta managed to draw the Liverpool defenders across and well out of positions, so when the ball was chipped across by Arteta, Carsley nodded it on and Osman may have got an added touch past the last defender, leaving two Everton players near the penalty spot in with a chance.  Johnson wisely held back to allow Tim Cahill to finish with aplomb, pushing the ball firmly beneath the despairing Reina and into the back of the Gwladys Street net, to set Goodison Park alight.

A plethora of yellow and red cards were expected as usual from Poll, but the first was awarded to Yobo with merit for a nice well-placed high foot in Gerrard's groin.

Liverpool did their best to respond with the Blues seemingly backing off to soak up the pressure, but it was another massively lofted goal-kick from Howard that led to the second goal, as Carsley was in sharply following two clashes to push the ball toward Johnson who had to fight off two Liverpool defenders.  Carragher should have cleared the ball but instead it spun off his knee leaving Andy Johnson a clear sight of goal and he needed no invitation to slide a perfect shot inside the near post for a superb finish.  Liverpool were suitably stunned.  Hehehehe!!!

photo
Joleon Lescott: Helped keep the Reds' attack at bay

There was plenty of incident but little in the way of memorable football for the rest of the first half, and for almost all of the second half, with Everton resolutely defending their lead despite a predictable onslaught that seriously threatened the Gwladys Street goal, Finnian firing fractionally wide, Gerrard hitting the post.  Riise should have walked for a cynical tackle on Arteta when the Spaniard was about to cut lose, but Riise twisted his ankle as a result and had to go off anyway, leaving Liverpool down to 10 men for the last 10 minutes.

Despite the desperate defending at times, the five added minutes brought a beautiful moment for Everton as they mounted one final attack on the Park End goal, a ferocious strike from Carsley being palmed up in the air by Reina.  He realized the ball was dropping down under the bar and scampered back to push it out... only as far as Andy Johnson's head!  Reina couldn't stop the striker's deft nod, only pushing the ball up into the roof of the net for Everton's third goal and the biggest derby win for over 40 years.  Fantastic!!!

Johnson brace has Everton soaring

Everton stunned their supposedly superior neighbours with their biggest victory in a Merseyside derby in decades to temporarily go top of the Premiership by virtue of the early afternoon kick off.

Tim Cahill broke the deadlock midway through the first half and Andy Johnson doubled the advantage before half time as the Blues capitalised on defensive lapses and took full control of the match. And Johnson sealed a wonderful day for Everton when he took full advantage of a calamitous error by Reina to nod home a third in injury time.

As predicted by many before the game, David Moyes again opted for the lone striker formation that was so successful at Tottenham a fortnight ago, with Johnson the willing runner assisted by Cahill pushing forward from a five-man midfield. With Tony Hibbert fit again, Phil Neville moved into central midfield alongside Lee Carsley, with Leon Osman and Mikel Arteta on the flanks. At the back, Gary Naysmith kept his place at left back, likewise for Joleon Lescott alongside Joseph Yobo and Tim Howard behind them.

As with so many of these fixtures, the game kicked off in frenetic fashion, with enthusiastic challenges flying in all over the place. Everton had the better of the opening exchanges, forcing the first corner of the match and creating the first opportunity when Carsley found himself on the left edge of the area but couldn't beat the first defender with his cross.

A minute later, Johnson headed the ball forward and burned past Jamie Carragher with devastating acceleration, but he delayed his shot and was eventually closed down before Neville latched onto an Arteta corner but his low drive through a crowd of players was blocked.

During the ensuing ten minutes, it was the visitors who gradually began to assert themselves and Robbie Fowler had a weak penalty claim waved away by Graham Poll when he went down in the vicinity of Yobo. Peter Crouch then went heart-stoppingly close when he slipped the ball just wide from the Reds' first corner and Luis Garcia tested Howard with a low drive that the American eventually gathered after initially fumbling the ball.

Gary Naysmith then had his now weekly attempt on his own goal when he headed dangerously close to the far post, hitting the stanchion as the ball flew behind for a corner.

Despite those moments of excitement in the opening quarter of the goal, the standard of football on offer was pretty poor from both sides. The free-flowing passing game from Everton that swept Spurs away had no chance to flourish in the cauldron of the derby and all too often the Blues resorted to high balls or kick-and-hope down the channels. Liverpool were little better.

Out of the blue, however, a delicious ball into the box by Arteta found Carsley who flicked the ball on with his head into the six yard box where Cahill swiftly turned it past the stranded Reina to put the Blues into the lead on 23 minutes.

Liverpool responded by upping their tempo and Steven Gerrard — amusingly, a banner featuring the photo of the England midfielder in an Everton strip in the Goodison trophy room as a kid was singled out by the TV cameras and given a little national exposure — tried his luck with a speculative drive from 25 yards but could only find the side netting.

A minute later, Garcia cut in from the right flank and unleashed a shot aimed at the top corner that Howard palmed wide and Gerrard, stretching at the back post, steered the ball off the woodwork and out to safety. And Gerrard was involved again a couple of minutes after that when he picked up Mohamed Sissoko's back-heel and swept it a couple of yards wide before forcing Yobo into a high-footed challenge that earned the Nigerian the first booking of the game.

60 seconds later, it was 2-0. A seemingly innocous ball into the box fell between Sammi Hyppia and Carragher but instead of hacking it clear, the English interational missed it completely leaving Johnson with all the time he needed to pick his spot and slot it past Reina. Cue bedlam in an ecstatic Goodison.

photo
Andy Johnson: A heroic display in more ways than one

The Reds were shell-shocked but they continued to probe in the second half, with mixed results. Fowler headed harmlessly into Howard's arms before Xabi Alonso ballooned substitute Dirk Kuyt's lay-off high over the bar and both Steve Finnan ahd Gerrard fired narrowly wide of Howard's right-hand post following corners.

Everton, happy to soak up the pressure and take any chances that came their way on the counter, had had a quiet second half by the time Osman engineered a great chance for Johnson but the striker couldn't make contact with his head at close range as he whipped in a cross from the left.

Back at the other end, Kuyt latched onto a long ball down the channel and fired hard and low only for Howard to smother his shot and Hyppia picked out Gerrard whose effort canonned off the near post and flew across the face of goal. When Hyppia turned the ball towards goal, Hibbert, sliding towards the touchline to block the cross, put it behind with the help of an arm. Whether it was intentional or not, none of the match officials caught it and Liverpool had to be content with a corner.

From the corner, Arteta raced clear and when Jon-Arne Riise clipped his heels, he not only earned a yellow card but also tore ligaments in his ankle and had to depart from the fray, leaving Liverpool to play out the last 11 minutes plus with 10 men.

Perhaps not surprisingly, the Blues resumed control over proceedings from then on and Naysmith might have notched their third with five minutes left but after his initial shot was blocked he fired just over with just Reina and the goal to aim for. But the third did arrive four minutes into injury time and it was the most comical incident of the game.

Naysmith collected the ball on the left from Nuno Valente, a late sub for Arteta, and then fed Carsley in space 25 yards from goal who had time to unleash a terrific drive that Reina parried into the air and back towards the goal. He caught the ball on the line but, realising that his momentum would carry the ball over the line, he tossed it into the air and straight onto the head of Johnson who had the simple task of pushing it into the roof of the net before wheeling away in delight at his fourth goal of the season.

David Moyes's starting formation and the presence of both Carsley and Neville in central midfield may have appeared to underline a lack of quality throughout the Everton side, but the Blues clearly went out with a gameplan that worked to perfection. It certainly wasn't pretty and with a touch more fortune, Liverpool would have at least have made the scoresheet, but the home side were well worth their victory. The fact that it was by such a convincing margin made it all the sweeter.

And what difference Johnson has made to the Everton attack. As he did at Spurs, the former Palace striker ran tirelessly on his own up front, and while the service was as great this time around, he showed again how dangerous he is chasing lost causes and how impressive he is playing with his back to goal. Most of all, however, his finishing ability is just the extra dimension for which the Blues have been crying out.

10 points from a possible 12, a three-goal trouncing of the Dark Side... what a fantastic start to the season!

Lyndon Lloyd

Match Preview

One thing you can usually count on is Everton's players being "up" for the Merseyside derby. As big a fixture as it is, though, and as much as it is so often Everton's "cup final" every season, it's quite depressing to think that the Blues have only beaten Liverpool three times in the last ten seasons.

Each victory is a treasured memory for Evertonians, though, and with the recent run of comprehensive defeats, this would be an especially win if David Moyes and his men can overcome Liverpool in what is an unsually early Goodison derby.

photo
James McFadden: Pulled a hamstring playing for Scortland

With their seemingly endless spending, the Dark Side are being tipped as potential Championship challengers this season so this will be as difficult a game as any for the Blues but they will, of course, be buoyed by a tremendous start that has seen them nab seven points from the first nine.  Liverpool, for their part, have only played twice due to their Champions League commitments, and are three points behind going into this weekend.

Quite apart from the local dimension, this game will be especially interesting for Evertonians as they wait to see the direction in which Moyes will be taking his players following the scintillating second-half display at White Hart Lane a fortnight ago that shattered a 21-year jinx at Tottenham's home ground.  There has been plenty of speculation in the meantime around how much Kevin Kilbane's early dismissal was the catalyst for some wonderful passing football but the cause is inconsequential; the important thing is that they proved they could play that way and many fans will be demanding that that level of performance become the norm.

Certainly, some of the pre-derby hype from the players has put an emphasis on developing that passing game so the hope is that this is the way that Moyes is looking for Everton to play now that he has an improved squad.

Kilbane has, of course, left Goodison since his nightmare at Spurs, signing for Wigan in a deal worth in excess of £2M. Moyes was either not able or not inclined to make a late move to replace him before the transfer deadline so right away he will need to shuffle his pack a little going into this weekend's game.

There has been talk of Gary Naysmith filling in on the left wing seeing as James McFadden is out of contention with a hamstring strain and Nuno Valente is fit enough to get his season underway.  Naysmith could get the call if the manager opts to play 4-5-1 again with Andy Johnson as a lone striker.  But Moyes could just as easily deploy Mikel Arteta or Leon Osman on the flanks, however, with Tim Cahill and Lee Carsley in the middle behind Andy Johnson and James Beattie in a 4-4-2.

Alan Stubbs is out with an ankle injury so Joseph Yobo and Joleon Lescott will surely start together for the second time with Phil Neville retaining his berth at right back and Tim Howard continuing in goal. Jostling for a place on the substitute's bench alongside Richard Wright will be Victor Anichebe, Simon Davies, David Weir and Tony Hibbert.  Andy van der Meyde remains conspicuous by his continued absence.

There's not much to say about the Mersey derby that hasn't already been covered by clichés — "the form book goes out the window," etc — and recent results. as usual, it's be impossible to call but what will be key for Everton is the attitude of the players.  During the "dogs of war" days, the Blues always seemed to play better on the day whether they won or not. The same can't be said under David Moyes.  The fans will be looking for that to change, starting with this weekend.

Lyndon Lloyd

Matchday Stats

The 175th League derby sees Everton three points ahead of their local rivals in the League.  The last time Everton were above Liverpool going into a derby match was in 2004 when Everton held a 9-point lead on Liverpool, which was raised to 12 points following Lee Carsleys winner at Goodison Park.  This was Evertons last victory over Liverpool, with Liverpool winning the last three meetings.  Can Everton emulate the halting of their winless run at Tottenham two weeks ago with a win over their rivals?

In the stats for the Tottenham match, we touched on the fact that the last time we had won our opening match of the season, in 2002, we drew the next game, and then won the third game.  The fourth game of that season saw a 1:3 defeat at Manchester City, with David Unsworth getting Evertons goal...

We also highlighted the fact that the last time we won the opening match when playing at home, in 1996, we also drew our second game of the season, like Blackburn this season.  Our third game in 1996 was another away match, like this season, and it was against Tottenham Hotspur, but this time we managed a 2:0 win as opposed to the 0:0 draw in 1996.  In that season our fourth match saw a 0:1 defeat at home to Aston Villa.

It would appear, then, that we are looking at another miserable derby result.  In fact, the only time the club have gone through the first 4 games unbeaten in the Premier League was in that first season, 1992-93, when Everton were unbeaten for the first 5 games, winning 2 and drawing 3.

Everton's full record against Liverpool in all competitions is:

 

P

W

D

L

F

A

Premier League

28

7

10

11

28

35

Division One

146

48

44

54

181

203

FA Cup

20

6

5

9

24

34

League Cup

4

1

1

2

1

2

Charity Shield

3

1

1

1

2

2

Screen Sport Cup

2

0

0

2

2

7

TOTALS:

203

63

61

79

238

283

Whilst Evertons overall record against Liverpool sees us losing more games than weve won, our record at home to Liverpool is slightly better, although its still nothing to get excited about (stats wise anyway!):

 

P

W

D

L

F

A

Premier League

14

5

4

5

16

17

Division One

73

27

23

23

93

87

FA Cup

10

5

1

4

13

16

League Cup

1

0

0

1

0

1

Charity Shield

1

0

0

1

0

1

Screen Sport Cup

1

0

0

1

1

4

TOTALS:

100

37

28

35

123

126

The last meeting between the clubs, on 25 March earlier this year saw Everton lose, yet again, 1:3 at Anfield, with both sides being reduced to ten men.  Whilst last seasons reverse fixture saw another defeat, also 1:3, although the referee for that game, and this, Graham Poll, along with his assistant incorrectly ruled out a Tim Cahill goal just before half-time.  That fixture saw another two men sent off, but this time it was Phil Neville and Mikel Arteta.  Will Poll be kind to us this time?  Dont hold your breath.

The odds on Andy Johnson (or anyone else) getting a hat-trick are not that great, as only 1 of Evertons 4 hat-tricks against Liverpool has been scored at Goodison Park, when Sandy Young scored 4 goals in Evertons 5:2 win on 1 April 1904.  The last hat-trick against Liverpool was by the immortal William Ralph Dean on 19 September 1931 in a 3:1 win at Anfield.

The teams record on 9 September would suggest that a victory over Liverpool might not happen, although our Premier League performance so far on this date, suggests that another Tottenham may be on the cards:

 

P

W

D

L

F

A

Premier League

2

1

0

1

4

4

Division One

16

6

2

8

25

32

League Cup

1

0

1

0

2

2

TOTALS:

19

7

3

9

31

38

The last match on this day was a 2:1 victory at Middlesbrough in 2000, with the goals coming from a Francis Jeffers brace.  The only other Premier League match on this day saw a 2:3 defeat at home to Manchester United in 1995, with the goals that day coming from Anders Limpar and Paul Rideout.  Like Tottenham the other week, it looks like Everton enjoy scoring 2 goals on this day, and again, like Tottenham, we are all hoping that if we do, we can keep Liverpool below 3!

In fact the stats for this date in Evertons match playing history are quite revealing!  In the last 6 matches on this date (all the way back to 1972), Everton have scored 13 goals, and have scored at least 2 goals in all 6 matches (scoring 3 in one match).  Also, in the 9 matches Everton have played at home on this date (and all have been at Goodison Park), Everton have scored 20 goals, and have scored at least 2 goals in every home match (scoring 3 on two occasions).  Can we keep this record going?

Milestones that can be reached this game:

         If he starts, Mikel Arteta will be making his 50th start for the club in all competitions.

         If Tony Hibbert is recalled and plays, then this will be his 150th match for Everton in all competitions.

         If he makes yet another substitute appearance, then James McFadden will join Sandy Brown in 4th place on the overall list with 43 substitute appearances for Everton in all competitions, with only 39 more before he joins Duncan Ferguson at the top.

Steve Flanagan

* Unfortunately, we cannot control other sites' content policies and therefore cannot guarantee that links to external reports will remain active.

Key Links
  Everton TV
  Match Reports
  Everton Teamsheet
  Away Teamsheet
  Premiership Scores
  Premiership Table
  Match Preview
  Pre-Match Stats
Match Reports
2006-07 Reports Index
< Tottenham (A) Wigan (H) >
 Everton websites
 ToffeeWeb Summary
 Evertonfc.com Report
 When Skies Are Grey Report
 Bluekipper Report
 Everton fans' reports
 Lyndon Lloyd Report
 Paul Traill Report
 Other media reports
 BBC Sport Report
 4 the Game Report
 Sky Sports Report
 Sporting Life Report
 SoccerNet Report
 The Observer Report
 The Guardian Report
 Liverpool Echo Report
 Daily Post Report
EVERTON (4-5-1)
  Howard
  Hibbert
  Yobo :34'
  Lescott
  Naysmith
  Carsley
  Arteta (89' Valente)
  Neville {c}
  Osman (83' Beattie)
  Cahill
  Johnson
  Subs not used
  Wright
  Weir
  Van der Meyde
  Unavailable
  Stubbs (injured)
  McFadden (injured)
  Vaughan (unfit)

LIVERPOOL (4-4-2)
  Reina
  Aurelio
  Finnan
  Carragher
  Hyypia
  Gerrard {c}
  Alonso
  Sissoko (77'Pennant)
  Luis Garcia
  Crouch (52' Kuyt)
  Fowler (63' Riise)
  Subs not used
  Dudek
  Agger

Premiership Scores
Saturday 9 Sep 2006
Everton 3-0 Liverpool
Arsenal 1-1 Middlesbro'
Bolton 1-0 Watford
Chelsea 2-1 Charlton
Man United 1-0 Tottenham
Newcastle 1-2 Fulham
Portsmouth 1-0 Wigan
Sheff United 0-0 Blackburn
Sunday 10 Sep 2006
West Ham -v- Aston Villa
Monday 11 Sep 2006
Reading -v- Man City

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