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Everton held by tough Bohs

15/08/2011 |   Comments () :  Add your Comments
Everton started this extra pre-season friendly with a fairly strong team that included a fit Mikel Arteta and a fit Marouane Fellaini, but was ominously shorn of both Jagielka and Baines (potential transfer targets of Arsenal & Liverpool respectively). In their places, rare senior appearances for Reserves Shane Duffy and Luke Garbutt. Young star Ross Barkley also started with no sign of Cahill, Yakubu or Saha, and rumours of Gueye's injury apparently reliable...

Everton: Mucha; Hibbert, Heitinga, Duffy, Garbutt; Fellaini, Anichebe Rodwell; Arteta, Barkley; Beckford. Subs: Howard, Mustafi, Distin, Neville, Osman, Bilyaletdinov, Baxter, Vellios.

The wet conditions in Dublin were not affecting the visitors who took early control of possession and came close to scoring from their first corner that fell to Anichebe who powered inches wide. .The game began well with a Fellaini header being helped over the line by Jermaine Beckford for the first goal after 10 minutes. It was off a cross from Ross Barkley who picked out Fellaini completely unmarked in the box. He headed goalwards and Beckford was there to fire home, two yards from goal.

Mikel Arteta looked to be back to something of his old self, rarely venturing much further than the centre circle but pulling all the strings. Keith Buckley almost had Bohs level when his effort from the edge of the box clipped Heitinga on the head and sailed just inches wide of Mucha's far post. Then Hibbert was called upon to stand firm in the Everton box.

Everton relaxed and allowed the Bohs to get more possession, with some of tehir attacks coming close. Later, it was Barkley's turn to be opportunistic with a long shot of his own that did not trouble 'keeper Sexton. Beckford might have done better as he stretched to head wide after another good cross from Luke Garbutt. It was a fantastic, defence splitting pass by Anichebe that played the fullback in.

All-in-all, Everton's new-look left side of Garbutt & Barkley had looked a hell of a lot better than the right-side axis of Hibbert & Anichebe!

After the break, Moyes rang the changes with Apostolos Vellios, Sylvain Distain, Shkodran Mustafi, Tim Howard and Leon Osman in for Jermaine Beckford, John Heitinga, Shane Duffy, Jan Mucha and Ross Barkley.

Anichebe came very close again after a great run to the byline before turning back into the box and firing narrowly wide of Sexton's left-hand post. Then Rodwell hammered in a good shot that was cleared off the line, from a feed off Arteta. Everton again came close when Vellios headed over following a Hibbert cross.

Bohemians equalized on 66 mins with an excellent solo effort from Anthony Flood, very much against the run of play. He collected possession deep in the Everton half before running at goal and firing into the bottom right corner, past a bemused Howard who had not even touched the ball!

More subs for both sides, with Baxter, Neville and Bilyaletdinov getting some match-time in place of Anichebe, Fellaini and Arteta. The game entered it's final phase pretty evenly balanced, although the Bohemians had rarely troubled the Everton goal, but looked very dangerous on the break as Everton pushed on for a winner. Sexton had to pull off a great save when Vellios fired powerfully from a tight angle.

Subs for Bohs included Aidan Downes, once of this parish, whom David Moyes once paid the princely sum of 900k for! Downes was released by Everton in 2008. But another excellent save by Sexton denied Osman, before the home keeper was subbed by Brady.

The last decent shot came from Vellios who fired over from 20 yards... and that was it. A good runabout as final preparation for the Real Thing in just five days at Goodison Park.

Original Source: Live Matchday Forum

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