The game started off with Everton looking very shaky at the back. Drenthe almost gifted the opposition the lead, twice, in the opening moments. A pass to Baines was under hit and he then played another poor pass towards Heitinga. The home side looked nervous and the first 10 minutes saw them treat the ball like a hot potato; with nobody willing to get their foot on the ball and dictate the play.
Coleman had a shot blocked, Drenthe fired straight at the keeper from a difficult angle and a dangerous Baines cross evaded everyone; as Everton began to wake up. Everton's first real chance came with 15 minutes on the clock. Cahill headed a deep Coleman cross, to the far post, across goal and Hennessey was alert to Saha's effort as it bounced up and over.
Everton were still struggling to get into any sort of rhythm with the team guilty of surrendering possession too easily. The team looked short of leadership, with Phil Neville sorely missed. Wolves had kept the ball better, on the rare occasions they had it, but they rarely looked like troubling the Everton defence at any point.
Doyle broke quickly for Wolves, after a Coleman mistake, but Jagielka was on hand to avert the danger. Leon Osman was putting in a good shift, winning his fair share of headers and tackles; two aspects he isn't noted for. Saha had two efforts blocked around the 30 minute mark as Everton tried to find a goal.
Eventually, Everton paid for their somewhat insipid display, as Wolves took the lead in the 37th minute through a Stephen Hunt penalty. Fellaini upended Edwards in the box and the referee pointed to the spot; although it appeared a soft decision. Hunt hammered the spot kick down the middle; he'd never lost to Everton in a game he'd scored in.
Everton restored parity just before half time with the help of Baines' trusty left foot, after Roger Johnson had bundled Cahill over outside the area. Phil Jagielka headed the left back's superbly struck free kick into the Park End net; doubling his tally for the season.
Everton were visibly boosted by the equaliser and twice came close to taking the lead before the interval. A great last-ditch tackle from Stearman denied Drenthe whilst Hennessey made a good save from Fellaini's low shot. Cahill was clearly fouled in his attempts to reach the rebound; however his claims didn't interest the referee and that signalled the end of the first half.
Baines had linked up well with Drenthe during the first half; although Drenthe looks more of a threat when played on the right of midfield. Coleman had got forward well and Fellaini and Osman had grown into the match. The rest of the team was having solid, if unspectacular games.
Everton looked the more likely during the second period, although they looked very short on ideas and creativity. Too often, the Toffees' method of attack was a long ball forward; dealt with easily by the tall Wolves centre backs. Fellaini fired an effort over the bar after half time and that was Everton's only effort of note until the 67th minute; when Cahill spurned a golden chance.
Coleman showed good pace to get in round Elokobi; an achievement in itself, and Saha helped the ball on with a neat flick. The ball fell to Cahill, just a few yards out, but he failed to make any sort of telling contact. That allowed Ward and Hennessey to smother his effort. Bizarrely, the referee gave a free kick to Wolves; with no Everton player near the incident.
Vellios came on with 15 minutes remaining, as Everton tried to find a winner. The winner eventually came with less than 10 minutes remaining; after a blocked effort from Saha. The resulting corner lead to a soft penalty after Ward appeared to push Saha to the ground. Baines stepped up, and coolly sent Hennessey the wrong way, to make it 7 penalties out of 7 in the league for Everton's left back.
Everton saw the game out in relative comfort, as the manager introduced Bilyaletdinov; his arrival received a few boos, and Stracqualursi. They replaced the industrious Drenthe and a below par Saha, as the clock ran down. An O'Hara free kick, wide of the far post, was all the visitors could muster in their search for an equaliser.
It wasn't a vintage Everton performance but the reward was a much-needed 3 points. Baines just edged man of the match for his constant work and his cool penalty. Coleman played better than he has for weeks and the back four all had solid games. Hibbert had a couple of poor early crosses but made up for it with some great tackles as the match progressed.
The team is clearly struggling with the loss of Arteta as his passing range is sorely missed. One thing is for certain, the standard of football has to improve. The passing and movement were again below par with the side's ball retention almost totally lacking; especially first half.
Many fans will blame the poor standard of football on the lack of investment but the players and the manager are both, still, capable of doing a lot better.
Note: the following content is not moderated or vetted by the site owners at the time of submission. Comments are the responsibility of the poster. Disclaimer
1 Posted 20/11/2011 at 17:59:58
I know his delivery has improved over the last couple of years, but surely Baines and Drenthe are better alternatives?
Still, I guess he's better than Mikel "can't beat the first man" Arteta at them.
2 Posted 20/11/2011 at 18:00:43
Interesting where he says "Try a bigger club, and a club that wants to play football all of the time."
3 Posted 20/11/2011 at 18:18:33
As for the Arteta interview, they just can't help themselves... footballer's having been given a second chance in their career at Everton then moving on and forgeting about the last 7 years. Good luck I say but don't start with the mildly derogatory comments about a club's stature because of the state of football in England, rise above it!
Mick McCarthy is one of the managers who does give Everton and Moyes credit for Everton being one of the better footballing sides in the Prem. I can't remember the amount of times I've watched Arsenal wanting to see a good passing game and was sorely dissapointed, I think it's a case of saying "How loyal he is now to his new club?" Nevermind.
4 Posted 20/11/2011 at 18:32:35
I liked Arteta but I think his disloyalty is bad. He even took a pay cut to play for Arsenal, that tells me that he never wanted to be here in the first place... but in truth, who can blame him after last year?
5 Posted 20/11/2011 at 19:49:08
During 2006-2009 we played some lovely stuff which put to bed our image as being defensive and Dogs of War Mk II.
He's happy to keep playing Saha, who is lazy on the defensive front, and Drenthe, who is a bit of a loose cannon, because he respects their attacking prowess. Yesterday I thought we missed Rodwell's physicality and his ability to keep the ball moving. After years of attacking from the middle, we are now going down the flanks with Drenthe and Coleman. Give it time, we'll get up that table.
6 Posted 20/11/2011 at 20:06:07
The 'big club' comment is spot on, we are absolute no-marks now ? not at the races in any way shape or form; Moyes and Kenwright can claim credit for that.
I don't blame him at all for his "footballing" references, he looked absolutely bemused at times under Moyes.
He's not your usual mindless footballer so his comments carry a bit more weight than the normal rent-a-gob.
7 Posted 20/11/2011 at 20:32:23
"The 'big club' comment is spot on, we are absolute no-marks now ? not at the races in any way shape or form; Moyes and Kenwright can claim credit for that."
Why must you always spout mindless bullshit? If you know your history you will know we were all ready a fading giant long before Moyes arrived. If anything, Moyes has brought a bit or respect back to this club and has took us from a relegation team to a top 8 team.
8 Posted 20/11/2011 at 20:33:19
Arteta is right ? it's not Moyes's way of pass and move; he is Big Sam in diguise... my local team play better football. Only because I love the club... I'd never ever watch Everton play football.
9 Posted 20/11/2011 at 20:43:36
"Why must you always spout mindless bullshit?"
Same reason you do.
10 Posted 20/11/2011 at 20:47:18
11 Posted 20/11/2011 at 20:27:20
In ten years, you've managed to compile a list of seven players... two of which are full-backs, two others (and the best on the list) he has fucking SOLD! Drenthe I like, but he was a desperate loan signing which we're not likely to see next year (he doesn't track back enough for Moyes), and Bily and McFadden don't get a game (because they are shite).
You state that two years ago we were playing some good football. By that token I guess you would concede that we've gone backwards then? And you'd be right. Moyes's team is so stagnant right now that they are really starting to stink the place out.
The only flair you're likely to see at Goodison these days is a distress signal. Please someone come and save us from Moyes and his anti-football.
12 Posted 20/11/2011 at 21:50:49
For fuck's sake, let's see more of Vellios, young Ross and Magaye. If you are good enough, you are old enough ? and I think they are.
13 Posted 21/11/2011 at 01:24:32
14 Posted 21/11/2011 at 07:34:10
Brendan Rodgers is a manager who has far less experience than Moyes. I saw Rodgers interviewed on MoTD: rather than blame his defender for making the mistake which led to the United goal he said "I tell them to play this way so if anyone is to blame it's me." How refreshing ? a manger who takes responsibility for his team's performance good or bad... would we see Moyes do that?
15 Posted 21/11/2011 at 07:45:17
As well as individual skill, you also need a colelctive mentality. Thats why all Mourinho sides mirror his personality, as do Fergusons and Wengers and Moyes!
16 Posted 21/11/2011 at 08:29:54
Do you know what, that is about the first post you've put on here that I actually agree with. We were a fading giant long before Moyes came, no doubt, and he did give us a bit of respect back. In fact, even more than that, he saved us from relegation and got us in to Europe, playing dull football, but in Europe none the less, but those years of progress stopped 3 or 4 years ago as far as I am concerned.
Since then it's been shite, dour, dull, boring, negative pub football. Attendances are down massively, 31,000 for Wolves at home says it all.
Trevor's comment is valid too, both Moyes and Kenwright can take credit for where we are and what we've become, along with Carter.
Time for a change, thanks for all you've done for us and goodbye.
17 Posted 21/11/2011 at 10:48:07
It was always going to be difficult to replace Lescott and the partnership and understanding he had with Jagielka (as proved by the Spain friendly) but I think Distin was a decent buy. Again with hindsight we can criticise Moyes for bringing in Heitinga but to get a Dutch international for ÂŁ6m was well worth a try who could potentially fill the gap left by Carsley or even act as competition to Distin, it seemed like a no-brainer to me.
After that though we virtually stopped spending and thus stopped progressing while teams around us like Spurs and Man City spent millions, it was inevitable that we were going to fall behind those two teams. It doesn?t help when three of your best players (Jags, Arteta and Yakubu) never fully recover from their career-threatening injuries and you are forced to sell your two most creative players Arteta and Pienaar.
No manager could cope any better in the circumstances. Give Moyes money and he will compete for the top 4 again.
18 Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:27:20
19 Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:38:02
20 Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:43:45
21 Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:38:25
"We haven't played good football, with any consistency, since the eighties" ? So it's not "all" Moyes's fault seeing as he wan't here in the 90s,.....or is it? The truth is out there.
22 Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:53:39
Everton 1 - Wolves 1
21st August 2010
Referee: Lee Mason
Read more: http://www.wolves.vitalfootball.co.uk/stats.asp?a=210192#ixzz1eLORQ5LE
I'd say that was some drop
23 Posted 21/11/2011 at 12:58:38
24 Posted 21/11/2011 at 18:09:51
The attendance was actually 33,953 which is 3,814 less than last year. Bearing in mind last year's game against Wolves was the first home game when everyone is still excited about the season ahead, it's not that much of a drop in attendance.
25 Posted 21/11/2011 at 21:49:25
With the quality of football on show I can only see that getting worse as the season progresses, many have just had enough of this crap. If I was back in the UK, I wouldn't be making as many journeys over to Goodison from Norfolk as I used to ? that's for sure.
26 Posted 22/11/2011 at 03:01:14
Watching Arteta play for Arse as I'm doing right now v Norwich (it's 9:00pm Monday in Chicago ? rerun), makes me think of: (1) how good a player he really is (2) how he was wasting his time and talents at Everton (lost it after his injury, my fucking ass: dour negative tactics and selection from a coach who always, always puts safety first) and (3) what a pleasure it was to have him with us.
All the best, Teta.
Add Your Comments
In order to post a comment to Column articles, you need to be logged in as a registered user of the site.
Or Sign up as a ToffeeWeb Member — it's free, takes just a few minutes and will allow you to post your comments on articles and MailBag submissions across the site.