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Season 2012-13

EVERTON UNDER-21s, 2012-13

Everton Reserves have been re-branded as Everton Under-21s with a whole new competition in the FA Under-21 Premier League (National Group 1)

Everton's Under-21 side played in the FA Barclays Premier Under-21 League National Group 1. It marked the beginning of a new era for the increasingly irrelevant Reserves, whose history stretches back to an age that pre-dated the formation of the Football League in 1888.  The Under-21s largely represent the end product of the much hyped Everton Academy at Finch Farm, with a slew of young players hopefully retained this season for the new competition, rather than being farmed out on loan before most of them are inevitably released by the club.


Results & Fixtures  A record of Everton's Under-21 matches for the season
League Table  Current standings in the FA Premier Under-21 League
Match Details  Teamsheets and brief reports for each match
Appearances  A table of Under-21 appearances for all senior players
Friendlies Results from Reserves/Under-21 friendly matches
Everton Under-21s will no longer be playing their matches at Finch Farm, but no announcement has been made yet regarding a "home ground".

On 3 August 2012, it was formally announced that the Premier Reserve League will cease to exist, to be replaced by a new Professional Development League 1, to be commonly known as the U21 Premier Reserve League. A similar U18 league will also be created, and the system will be mapped across the Football League, additionally creating Professional Development Leagues 2 and 3. Teams are ranked according to the categorising of the club academy (a categorisation that will be re-assessed every three years). Everton are a Categroy A team.

The competition is not optional, and participation from all 20 Premier League clubs is therefore confirmed (although Wigan, QPR and Swansea will initially be in Professional Development League 2, sitting outside of the U21 Premier Reserve League. The new FA Premier Under-21 League format includes 17 Premier League sides and six Cjhampionship sides. Participating clubs are split into three National Groups as follows:

National Group 1 National Group 2 National Group 3
Arsenal Aston Villa Chelsea
Blackburn Rovers Manchester United Crystal Palace
Bolton Wanderers Newcastle United Fulham
Everton Southampton Liverpool
Norwich City Stoke City Manchester City
Reading Sunderland Middlesbrough
West Bromwich Albion Tottenham Hotspur Wolverhampton Wanderers
West Ham United Watford  

After a double round-robin group stage, clubs will be promoted and relegated between the three groups for the second half of the season, with the aim of ensuring competitive football and closely-matched games throughout. At the end of the season, a play-off style knock-out competition will take place between the winners of Groups 2 and 3 (Qualification Groups) and the three top teams in the Elite Group to determine the overall winner.

Matches must be played between Friday and Monday, demonstrating increased relevance, and games will be played at lower-league stadia rather than training grounds. Chelsea, for example will host their U18 games at Staines Town and the U21 team will be playing at Brentford's Griffin Park. In addition, each U21 team must play at least two games at the home stadium of the club, allowing young players to perform in venues and atmospheres to which they must become accustomed.

Discounted tickets will be available for all games to persuade families to watch the teams, hopefully attracting those that could otherwise not afford to visit Old Trafford or the Emirates on a match day. Finally, rules dictate that in the U21 league, three over-age outfield players and one over-age goalkeeper may be used, a stipulation that allows for injured players to make effective returns from a lay-off before first-team action.

Everton's games in the Liverpool Senior Cup are covered here also.  Some of the Under-21s may play in the FA Youth Cup too.

 EVERTON U-21s RESULTS AND FIXTURES, 2012-13        
Date Opponent Res Scorers Att Pos
National Group 1 Matches
Sun 19 Aug West Bromwich Albion (A)   1 - 3 Duffy  
Sun 26 Aug West Ham United (H)   1 - 5 Duffy  
Mon 3 Sep Arsenal (A)   0 - 3    
Fri 14 Sep Reading (A)   1 - 1 Duffy  
Mon 24 Sep Blackburn Rovers (A)   1 - 0 Duffy  
Sun 30 Sep Bolton Wanderers (H)   5 - 2 Gueye, Pennington, Kennedy, McAleny, Duffy  
Mon 8 Oct Norwich City (A)   2 - 0 Vellios, Grant  
Mon 22 Oct Arsenal (H)   1 - 2 Vellios  
Fri 26 Oct West Ham United (A)   0 - 1  
Sun  4 Nov West Bromwich Albion (H)   2 - 1 Kennedy, Hope  
Mon 12 Nov Blackburn Rovers (H)   1 - 2 Grant  
Sun 18 Nov Reading (H)   0 - 0  
Sun  2 Dec Norwich City (H)   2 - 1 Gueye, McAleny  
Fri  6 Dec Bolton Wanderers (A)   3 - 1 Vellios, Kennedy, Barkley    
Elite Group 1 Matches
Mon 14 Jan Blackburn Rovers (A)   3 - 0 McAleny, Junior, Lundstram  
Mon 11 Feb Fulham (A)   1 - 0 McAleny  
Sun 17 Feb Middlesbrough (H)   2 - 0 Lundstram, Barkley  
Mon 25 Feb Sunderland (A)   2 - 2 McAleny, Junior  
Mon  4 Mar Blackburn Rovers (H)   3 - 2 Barkley, Vellios, McAleny  
Mon 11 Mar Chelsea (A)   1 - 0 McAleny  
Sun 17 Mar Aston Villa (H)   2 - 2 McAleny, Hope  
Mon  8 Apr Fulham (H)   1 - 1 Duffy  
Mon 15 Apr Middlesbrough (A)   2 - 1 Kennedy  
Mon 22 Apr Sunderland (H)   0 - 0  
Thu 25 Apr Chelsea (H)   0 - 0  
Mon 29 Apr Aston Villa (A)   0 - 0  
Playoff Matches
Tue  7 May Newcastle United (H)   3 - 3 McAleny, Naismith, Lundstram  
Mon 13 May Tottenham Hotspur (A)   2 - 3 McAleny, Long  

Liverpool Senior Cup (2011-12):
Tue 1 Aug Tranmere Rovers (A)    1 - 2 Vellios    

Liverpool Senior Cup (2012-13):
Mon 25 Mar AFC Liverpool (A)   P - P Everton Withdrew from the Competition    

Pre-Season and other Friendlies, 2012-13
Sat 21 Jul Airdrie United (N)    2 - 1 Barkley, Garbutt   F
Sun 22 Jul Partick Thistle (A)    1 - 3 McAleny   F
Sat 28 Jul Hereford United (A)    0 - 0   F
Sat 4 Aug Bangor City (A)    6 - 0 Hope 2, Barkley, Long, McAleny, Lundstram   F
Thur 9 Aug Blackpool (H)    2 - 2 Forrester, Hope   F

(F) denotes Friendly fixture
(XI) denotes Friendly fixture involving an Everton XI (not necessarily the first team)
LSC denotes a tie in the Liverpool Senior Cup


Pos Team Pld W D L F A GD Pts
1 Blackburn Res 19 7 5 7 39 38 1 26
2 Sunderland Res 19 6 6 7 29 27 2 24
3 Liverpool Res 18 5 7 6 23 24 -1 22
4 Everton Res 19 4 3 12 23 34 -11 15
5 Blackpool Res 19 4 2 13 23 49 -26 14


The section below contains team details, scorers, and brief match reports for Everton Under-21 matches during the 2012-13 Season. 
  West Bromwich Albion 3 - 1 Everton
Under-21 National Group 1, Match No 1
Sunday 19 August 2012
Birmingham Road

Everton:  Taudul; Browning, Garbutt, Duffy, Bidwell; Kelly (55' Long), Lundstram, Barkley, Junior; Vellios (73' Jones), Forrester.
Subs not used: Springthorpe, Touray, Hammar.  Scorers: Duffy

As early as the first minute, the hosts that rattled the crossbar with a header but the referee spotted a push in the box to award Albion a penalty. Taudul guessed the right way to smother the ball at the first attempt.

Sam Kelly and Apostolos Vellios had a chance a piece unfortunately for them they could not capitalise on their chances before Taudul saved acrobatically to tip away a free kick. On 17 minutes Berahino made up for his earlier penalty miss by putting the home side ahead. The home side had settled down really well and looked a threat everytime they came forward.

Albion twice came close to going further ahead with and effort that came back off the post then one that went inches wide. Berahino was looking to double his tally before the break then a slight response from Everton saw Junior test Keeper with a rasping effort.

Taudul had to be alert early in the second half to deny Sawyers but Albion scored two goals within 8 minutes of each other, Wood took advantage of some poor Everton defending to waltz around Everton’s Taudul and slot home the second.   Then  on 65 minutes Berahino doubled his tally. Chris Wood could have made things look worse only to see his effort crash into the side netting.

Dufffy made the scoreline look more respectable, heading home in the last minute of the game.

 Everton 1 - 5 West Ham United
Under-21 National Group 1, Match No 2
Sunday 26 August 2012
Stobart Stadium, Widnes

Everton: Taudul, Browning, Bidwell, Lundstram, Duffy, Hammar, Garbutt, Barkley, Vellios, Hope (67' Forrester), Green (75' Jones)
Subs not used: Springthorpe, Kelly, Pennington.  Scorers: Duffy

It only took the visitors 4 minutes to get off the mark at Finch Farm with a fine strike from a good distance out as Robert Hall despatched with a powerful drive to beat Taudul down inside his left hand post with the marking from Everton not at its best.

Minutes later and the lead was increased with an unfortunate own goal from Swede Johann Hammar. The ball crossed from the left hand side was met by Hammar with no pressure from an opponent to give Taudul the job of retrieving the ball from the back of the net.

Another 5 minutes passed by when the third goal was smashed home from 20 yards by 19-year-old George Moncur. The goal finally dashed Everton’s hopes of any comeback despite three quarters of the game still left to play.

Everton started to find some rhythm with Green and Barkley showing their worth with Halam Hope also starting to get involved.  But it was no surprise when West Ham inflicted further embarrassment on the Toffees with another fine strike from Blair Turgott after a good build up with a finish to match.

Just on the half-time whistle, Shane Duffy headed home from full back Tyias Browning’s cross but it was too little too late.

Maybe an angry exchange of words at half-time by Blues boss Stubbs gave his troops the injection for their better showing in the second period with Vellios hitting the bar early on as Hope and Lundstram also came close. Barkley was also close after a fine assist from Vellios only to see his chance go narrowly wide of the target.

20 minutes from the end former Dulwich Hamlet, striker Paul McCallum hit Everton for 5 with Everton’s defence napping as the tall 6´3 forward, had no problem prodding the ball home at the back post.

 Arsenal 3 - 0 Everton
Reserves/U-21 Match No 3
Monday 3 September 2012
Underhilll Stadium, Barnet

Everton: Taudul; Browning, Lundstram, Hammar, Garbutt; Pennington, Green (81' Long), Barkley; Hope, Gueye, Kelly (55' Jones).
Subs not used: Springhtorpe, Forrester, Touray.  Scorers: None

Everton's Under-21s lost 0 - 3 to Arsenal tonight at Barnet's Underhill Stadium. The scoreline was a little unfair as it result from two dubious penalties and a late goal in injury time, but it leaves the Under-21's with three losses out of three in the new national league that replaces the old Reserves.

The scoreline was unfair on the Blues who held their own until the final moments of the first half when Sanchez Watt converted a dubiously awarded penalty. The same played then stepped up at the death to convert again from the spot. And in injury time sub Kyle Ebecilio stole in to make it three.

George Green had gone close to a second half leveller for the Toffees who fought manfully up the Underhill slope after half time. Predictably it was Arsenal who had most of the possession early on but to Everton's credit they had little to show for it.

The Blues were dogged in midfield, hassling and harrying their cosmopolitan counterparts. Indeed, it was the visitors who had the first efforts on goal as John Lundstram sent a volley off target and Magaye Gueye smashed an effort just over. Both those chances came as a result of the fast feet of Green and the diminutive youngster was proving a thorn in the Gunners' side.

He sent his own effort off target shortly after Hallam Hope had blocked a clearance back towards the Arsenal goal that James Shea had to tip round the post. The home side did start to carve out some chances as the half went on with Chuks Aneke inches over from a free kick and Martin Angha drilling wide from 20 yards.

The breakthrough came in the final minute of the half in controversial fashion. Tyias Browning was adjudged to have fouled Jernade Meade as the winger burst into the box and Watt was unerring from 12 yards. With the famous Underhill slope to their advantage after the break Arsenal had all guns blazing.

Aneke headed over early, Meade struck the post and a brilliant sprawling save from Mateusz Taudul temporarily deprived Watt of a second. The Polish keeper then denied Craig Eastmond one-on-one as Everton clung on.

They weathered that storm though and midway through the half Green extended Shea with a low left-foot effort which was tipped away for a corner. That spurred the Blues on and Hope was denied a penalty late on with boss Alan Stubbs livid on the touchline.

In the end it was another spot kick for Arsenal which settled it, with Watt converting again after Taudul had fouled Meade. With pretty much the last kick of the game Ebecilio drove into the box and slotted past Taudul to make it 3-0.

 Reading 1 - 1 Everton
U-21 National Group 1, Match No 4
Friday 14 September 2012

Everton: Taudal; Browning, Lundstram, Duffy (70' Pennington); Garbutt, Hammar, Grant (83' Hope), Junior; Vellios, Kelly, Kennedy.
Subs not used: Springthorpe, Forrester, Green.  Scorers: Duffy.

Everton Under-21s secured their first point of the season in the new league competition with a 1-1 draw at Reading thanks to an equalizing goal from Shane Duffy.

After three successive defeats, Alan Stubbs & Co arrived in Berkshire to face a Chris Cummins Reading that have won their last two games after suffering defeat in their opener at West Ham. The Biscuitmen lie currently in second place behind Arsenal who have maximum points where as Everton are rock bottom with no points on the board.

Everton, playing in their all-black strip, welcomed new signing from Kilmarnock Matthew Kennedy to make his debut, partnering Vellios in attack. In the first fifteen minutes the home side settled the better of the two. It was the Royals that broke the deadlock on 21 minutes as Everton's keeper Taudul failed to clear the danger. The home side were awarded a free-kick taken by Losasso which fell conveniently to full back Matt Partridge who made no mistake from 20 yards with a ferocious half volley.

Gunnarsson somehow failed to convert a volley and curl his effort outside of the Everton post. With the half drawing to a close, Everton were awarded a corner which was taken by Luke Garbutt, his delivery was met with at the near post by Shane Duffy to equalize for the visitors.

Moments before the break, new boy Kennedy had a chance to make a name for himself only to be denied by the heroics of Stuart Taylor, then Vellios somehow managed to head over when it seemed easier to score.

Matt Kennedy produced Everton's first chance of the second half as the visitors started brightly but, as in the first half, Taylor denied the youngster with another fine save.

Taudul made up for his earlier error with a good save from close range; Partridge sent his header wide of the goal which was a let off for Everton. Reading started to step it up as time was running out with the game far from being a classic.

Near the end, Sam Kelly should have given Everton the 3 points but he somehow sent his header over the bar when a goal seemed to be the only outcome.

 Blackburn Rovers 0 - 1 Everton
U-21 National Group 1, Match No 5
Monday 24 September 2012
Leigh Sports Village

Everton: Taudul; Browning, Garbutt (4' Touray), Grant, Duffy; Hammar, Kennedy, Kelly; Vellios, Forrester, Green (52' Long).
Subs not used: Springthorpe, Pennington, Johns.  Scorers: Duffy

A strong Rovers side were left to rue missed chances as they slipped to a 1-0 loss at home to Everton. Rovers dominated the match from start to finish, but it was the visitors who left with the points after Shane Duffy scored a second half header, Everton's only effort at goal in a smash-and-grab display.

Rovers were quick out of the blocks creating a decent chance inside only two minutes. Micah Evans showed good pace down the right to pull the back for Josh Morris but from 12 yards the winger somehow fired over.

Diogo Rosado looked lively on his first Rovers outing, on ten minutes the midfielder collected a pass from Evans before cutting inside but his left-footed shot was brilliantly turned behind by Mateusz Taudul in the Everton goal.

Everton were offering little as an attacking force as Rovers continue to dominate in terms of possession, Edinho showing good persistance to steal the ball from Ibou Touray in the area, but his near post shot was saved by the 'keeper's legs.

Simon Vukcevic saw a header deflect wide, whilst Micah Evans saw a shot saved after a strong forward run. But the chance of the first half fell to Vukcevic who hit a stupendous 40-yard effort that beat Taudul all ends up but the ball crashed down off the crossbar and away.

Aside from one punched clearance, Rovers stopper Gzregorz Sandomierski had very little to do, likewise the defenders in front of him, Nuno Henrique threatening further upfield when he headed a Rosado corner into the side-netting.

At the break the only thing lacking from Rovers' first half display was goals.

Rovers started the second half in the same manner, again with Diogo Rosado forcing the play. The midfielder should have done better when the ball fell nicely for him in the box but the 22-year-old lashed wide.

Gary Bowyer's men would live to regret their catalog of missed opportunities when the visitors scored with their first effort on goal of the game.

It came on 59 minutes after Everton were generously awarded a free-kick on the right and as the ball was delivered deep to the back post Johan Hammar headed back across goal for his defensive partner Shane Duffy and he nodded home from close-range.

Unbowed Rovers continued to press, Rosado was wide with another effort before substitute Osayamen Osawe saw a shot across goal tipped away by Taudul.

The chances kept on coming for Rovers, but Taudul continued to keep them at bay, the Polish-born goalkeeper reacting quickly when a Simon Vukcevic goalbound effort took a deflection and then denying sub' Jamie Maclaren with his legs after the Australian shot hard and low.

As the clock ticked towards the ninety the home side got more and more desperate with their efforts, Osawe and Morris both guilty of shooting well wide from distance. Simon Vukcevic went closer but an Everton boot diverted the Montenegrin's effort narrowly wide.

The result was harsh on Rovers as they ran the game from start to finish, but as was often the case last season, missed chances were their undoing.

 Everton 5 - 2 Bolton Wanderers
U-21 National Group 1, Match No 6
Sunday 30 September 2012
Finch Farm

Everton: Taudul; Browning, Touray, Junior, Pennington, Duffy; Kennedy, Kelly (46' Grant); Vellios, Forrester (46' McAleny), Gueye.
Subs not used: Springthorpe, Green, Long.  Scorers: Gueye, Pennington, Kennedy, McAleny, Duffy.

Everton's Under-21 side continued their winning ways coming from behind in an action-packed 5-2 victory over Bolton Wanderers. Magaye Gueye had given the Blues a 15th-minute lead when he clipped past Wanderers stopper Sam Lych, with Francisco Junior instrumental in the goal. The midfielder dropped a shoulder to trick two opposition players, turned into the space and threaded a perfectly-weighted through pass for Gueye to finish.

Minutes earlier, Matthew Kennedy forced the first real save of the match when his fierce drive from distance had Lych at full stretch. But despite that positive start, the hosts were rattled just five minutes later when Mateusz Taudul was judged to have felled Samni Odelusi in the box. Michael O'Halloran stepped up to finish from the spot, but there was more to come.

On the half-hour mark, Odelusi found space to turn and shoot in one movement to put the visitors 2-1 up. The Blues hadn't done much wrong up until this point, with a few scrambles in the box the only scares amid fluid possession.

And in the second half, that control was intensified and put to devastating effect. Conor McAleny and Conor Grant both came on at the interval in place of Anton Forrester and Sam Kelly – and it was the duo's running that forced Bolton to be hurried as the rain continued to fall.

The substitutions also saw Gueye switch to a central role and the Olympian formed a formidabble partnership with Junior. Indeed, Everton were level just eight minutes into the second period. A decent spell resulted in a corner and Kennedy's floated ball was met with power by the forehead of Matthew Pennington. On 63 minutes, Kennedy grabbed his first goal in Blue. With Gueye's free-kick blocked, the Scotland Under-19 international drilled the loose ball low through a sea of bodies and into the bottom-right corner.

That put the Blues 3-2 up and from then on, there was no looking back. With Taudul only provided any tests from distance, the Blues focused on things at the other end of the park, with McAleny next on the scoresheet. The forward, recently returned from injury, showed no signs of rust as he worked a marvellous solo goal. Twisting and turning, he beat his man at the byline and cut inside to deliver a curling effort into the top corner.

And with 13 minutes to go Shane Duffy grabbed his third goal in as many games by rising highest to meet another Kennedy corner.

 Norwich City 0 - 2 Everton
U-21 National Group 1, Match No 7
Monday 8 October 2012

Everton: Mucha; Browning, Touray, Lundstram, Distin (46' Pennington); Duffy, Gueye, Hitzlsperger; Vellios, McAleny (45' Hope), Junior (44' Grant).
Subs not used: Taudul, Forrester.  Scorers: Vellios, Grant

Thomas Hitzlsperger and other seniors started, with Aspostolos Vellios and Conor Grant grabbed the important goals to give Everton a win and not without a fight from the hosts.

Conor McAleney fired Everton first chance wide then McAleny set up Vellios who fired wide. Browning was well beaten but the shot did not trouble Mucha. Mucha then had to drop onto a shot having failed to hold the first attempt. Mucha responded well diving at full stretch on the half-hour to deny a long driven shot. Vellios had a free kick saved easily.

Everton started the second period brightly, introducing three substitutes with one being Hallam Hope who provided Grant with an opportunity that came off the crossbar. Everton´s pressure paid off from a corner, full back Touray delivered to Vellios who gave the blues a lead from a few yards out. Vellios tried his luck not long after with a cheeky chip.

Norwich then responded with anoverhead kick, David Fox then fancied a shot from range that wasn´t a concern for Mucha. Norwich were increasing the tempo and putting Everton´s back line under pressure but Alan Stubb´s men were proving to be a stubborn unit.

Mucha proved his worth with 12 minutes remaining to push away a shot which seemed to come off Shane Duffy as Everton conceded a corner.  Fox came close again for the Canaries before the game was out of their reach as Everton sailed into a 2-goal lead with Hallam Hope providing a for Grant to despatch with a crisp left foot shot from inside the box.

Norwich had time for one more effort but the shot was directed into the side netting.

 Everton 1 - 2 Arsenal
U-21 National Group 1, Match No 8
Monday 22 October 2012
Finch Farm

Everton: Mucha; Hibbert, Oviedo, Lundstram, Hammar; Duffy, Kennedy, Hitzlsperger; Vellios (68' Forrester), Junior, Kelly (46' Browning).
Subs not used: Taudul, Pennington, Touray.  Scorers: Vellios

Despite going ahead through a smart goal from Vellios, Everton Reserves lost their Under-21 game when Arsenal – with Jack Wilshere on his way back to form from 16 months on the sidelines – came back stronger before the break to steal the points. Tony Hibbert got a runout along with Mucha, Hitzlsperger and Oviedo.

Everton got off to a flyer on 5 minutes with Vellios as the Greek forward took advantage of Ignasi Miguel then ran for goal selecting his spot past the Argentinian keeper Martinez .

Jan Mucha was then tested from 25 yards out to parry away an effort drilled in from Eisfeld. Arsenal pressed and were rewarded with a goal starting with quality build up involving England International Jack Wilshere. His ball found Jermade Meade out on the left who then teased full back Hibbert cut the ball back to Eisfeld who made no mistake from close range.

Hitlzlsperger went close for the blues firing a powerful effort over the frame of the goal and again Wishere provided a fine through ball to Meade who eluded Everton�s back line to fire over with a right-footed half-volley.

Another goal from Arsenal always looked likely and it arrived when Wilshere cut in from the right hand side to find the German Eisfeld once more who gave Mucha no chance. Mucha made another fine save keeping out a stinger from Frimpong as Arsenal bossed the latter stages of the half.

Everton made one change at the break taking off Sam Kelly and slotting Browning in the right back berth moving Tony Hibbert to the left. The second period was played at a fast pace with chances very rare. Johann Hammar went close for the blues only to see his effort miss the target marginally. Eisfeld was denied a hat trick as his effort came off the cross bar and eventually run out deserved winners, ending Everton�s four-game unbeaten run.

 West Ham United 1 - 0 Everton
U-21 National Group 1, Match No 9
Friday 26 October 2012
Rush Green, London

Everton: Taudul; Browning, Touray, Lundstram, Duffy; Pennington, Jones, Grant; Vellios, Long (72' Johns), Kennedy.
Subs not used: Springthorpe, Forrester, Kelly, Hammar.  Scorers: None

On a very cold Friday night at Rush Green, home of Grays Athletic, Everton U-21s were edged out by West Ham who scored the only goal which came in the 69th minute from Elliot Lee�s header.

The game was just underway when the home side had a shout for a penalty as the ball seemed to come off Shane Duffy�s hand after an attempted clearance.

Full back Tyias Browning produced the Toffees' first attack with a run down the right finding Gethin Jones but the shot was powerless. It was Browning again involved with another run which found Chris Long only to see his shot saved with ease. A Duffy volley was likewise denied after Kennedy had taken a free kick. Taudul was in the action to deny Elliot Lee with a fine save.Pennington went close with a header on the half hour mark.

Taudul made a good save for the visitors in the final minute of the half as West Ham won a corner which was met by centre back Wearen to see Taudul get an important fingertip to keep the ball out.

After the break, Taudul was forced to make an easy catch; then Lee set up McCallum but Everton�s defence reacted well to clear the danger. Two chances in two minutes fell Everton�s way for Vellios. The first was close to a goal as Vellios blasted wide from 18 yards; then he had the advantage of a mistimed back pass by Driver but somehow blasts the ball way over the top with the Hammers let off the hook.

Two chances then fell to the hosts with a clearance off the line by Pennington following a corner. Everton were finally beaten with a well despatched header from Elliot Lee putting away a corner. He almost scored again 3 minutes later, sending Taudul sprawling across his goal with an effort from 20 yards out.

Taudul did well to keep out another drive with the clock running down. Everton they had three more chances to get even, a 40-yard rasping shot from Ibou Touray, Lundstram tried his luck from 30 yards, and then right at the death it was Vellios who caught a sweet volley from Browning�s cross only to see his effort crash off the post into the awaiting arms of the keeper.

 Everton 2 - 1 West Bromwich Albion
U-21 National Group 1,  Match No 10
Sunday 4 November 2012
Finch Farm

Everton:   Mucha; Browning, Touray, Junior, Duffy; Pennington, Kennedy, Hitzlsperger; Vellios (78' Lundstram), Anichebe (21' Hope), Gueye.
Subs not used:  Taudul, Forrester, Hammar.  Scorers:   Kennedy, Hope.

Everton U21s beat their West Brom counterparts at Finch Farm thanks to goals from Matthew Kennedy and a late winner by Hallam Hope.  The Everton lineup included Thomas Hitzlsperger and Magaye Gueye who were unused substitutes at Fulham 24 hours earlier.

On a bitterly cold afternoon at Finch Farm it was Matthew Kennedy that forced the Albion goalkeeper into making the first save of the afternoon with a sweet volley. The visitors inflicted their first assault with a free kick and the blues were also close with a trademark Hitzlsperger effort from a free kick that was blocked by the Albion wall.

Kennedy got the blues in front on 14 minutes with a marvellous finish, cutting in then unleashing a shot that left the Brommies keeper helpless as the ball flew into the net. Anichebe had to be replaced not long after Everton had taken the lead as he seemed to fall heavily then to be stretchered off and replaced by Hallam Hope on 21 minutes. Everton were very much in control but not creating many chances for the front pair of Vellios and Hope.

The first chance of the second half fell to Magaye Gueye but his shot was directed way off the target. The visitors got back on level terms with a goal from Yassine El Ghanassy who lashed a low shot past Jan Mucha.

Everton had a good shout for a penalty as Hallam Hope went down in the box but the referee was not convinced. Hitzlsperger drove a shot goal-bound after a good feed from Kennedy but the German had his shot blocked.

Everton began to up their game again and Gueye went close only to be foiled by the keeper. Later, Kennedy made a run through the Albion defence but somehow lost his footing and slipped with the chance begging. But, with 6 minutes remaining, Kennedy made up for his slip with a lovely assist to Hope who side footed his shot home.

 Everton 1 - 2 Blackburn Rovers
U-21 National Group 1, Match No 11
Monday 12 November 2012
Finch Farm

Everton: Mucha; Browning, Touray (61' Garbutt), Junior, Duffy; Distin, Grant (83' Forrester), Hitzlsperger; Hope, Gueye, Jones (88' Kelly).
Subs not used:  Taudul, Pennington.  Scorers: Grant (42').

Sylvain Distin, Thomas Hitzlsperger and Jan Mucha were among the overage players as Everton Under-21s took on Blackburn Rovers U21s behind closed doors at Finch Farm today.

There was some good passing by the Blues in the early stages as Grant and Gueye went close. A vital interception by Jones denied Rovers at the other end. Grant and Hope were next to test the Blackburn goalkeeper before Rovers' took the lead on 24 minutes when a corner swung in deflected off Hallam Hope at the far post.

Jorge went close to scoring a second for Blackburn Rovers with a curling effort, while Magaye Gueye's free-kick is deflected narrowly over. Everton levelled things before the break, when Francisco Junior played in Conor Grant to finish neatly on 42 minutes.  Francisco Junior picked up a Yellow card after 53 minutes.

A Gethin Jones header beat the advancing keeper but it was cleared off the line by a retreating Rovers defender. Luke Garbutt, returning form a spell out injured, replaced Ibou Touray at left-back on 61 minutes. After twice going close to adding to his impressive goal tally for the year, defender Shane Duffy used his head to block a shot at the other end.

Blackburn finally took the lead when Bruno Ribeiro twisted and turned in the area to then lash a strike in off the upright on 75 mins. Duffy went agonisingly close with another header, before Garbutt cut inside to try his luck on his weaker foot. His shot was on target but saved.

 Everton 0 - 0 Reading
U-21 National Group 1, Match No 12
Sunday 18 November 2012
Finch Farm

Everton: Taudul; Browning, Touray, Junior, Distin; Duffy, Kennedy, Gibson (63' Hope); Vellios, Lundstram, Grant (84' Long).
Subs not used: Springthorpe, Forrester, Pennington.  Scorers: None

Darron Gibson made his long-awaited comeback from a thigh injury as Everton's Under-21s were held to a goalless draw by Reading on Sunday. The Irishman had not seen a minute of action since limping off during the first team's 2-0 defeat at West Bromwich Albion in early September. But the former Manchester United midfielder looked comfortable and composed as he managed a valuable 63 minutes before being replaced by youngster Hallam Hope.

The result was perhaps a little harsh on Alan Stubbs' side, who enjoyed large spells of possession but saw their hopes of victory thwarted by an impressive display from visiting goalkeeper Jonathon Henly. While Gibson's was the standout name on the teamsheet, there were also starting roles for Sylvain Distin - after he sat out Saturday's Premier League defeat to the Royals - and Apostolos Vellios, a second-half substitute at the Madejski Stadium.

But a seesaw start saw both teams struggle to grab a foothold in the game and it took 11 minutes for a real opportunity of note to arrive.  It fell to diminutive midfielder Francisco Junior but his thunderous drive from the edge of the box whistled just over the crossbar.

The Guinea-Bissau-born Under-21 international had a better chance shortly after when a neat flick from Vellios put him through on goal. On this occasion his first touch was too heavy, allowing goalkeeper Henly to tear off his line and pluck the ball from his feet. The battle between the former Benfica Academy star and the Royals stopper continued on 28 minutes when the former threw himself at a corner, forcing a smart, instinctive save from the latter.

Gibson, meanwhile, was growing as an influence in the game and tried his luck from range, only to get too much lift on his shot and send it cruising over the crossbar. A jinking run from Reading's Jordan Obita then led to a chance for Aaron Tshibola with 36 minutes played but Polish stopper Mateusz Taudul was equal to his fiercely struck drive and tipped it round the post.

Saturday's first-team fixture at Reading saw winger Matthew Kennedy named on the bench for the first time and with half-time nearing, the 18-year-old demonstrated his potential, evading a challenge with neat footwork, only to see his cutback across the face of goal well blocked with fellow midfielder Conor Grant primed to open the scoring.

The second half started with Everton again in the ascendancy but, for all their possession, the Blues struggled to break down a resolute Reading defence. They were nearly punished on the counter attack too but after sneaking into the box, Dominic Sam's shot was high and wild. The same player then saw another long-range effort deflected over by Distin as the visitors enjoyed their best spell of pressure.

Gibson's afternoon came to an end as he made way for Hope and the switch in formation led to an immediate chance for the hosts, Vellios stinging the palms of Henly with a bending strike from 18 yards. And despite a lively late cameo from substitute Chris Long, on for Grant, it was as close as the hosts would come to finding an elusive winner.

 Everton 2 - 1 Norwich City
U-21 National Group 1, Match No 13
Sunday 2 December 20124
Finch Farm

Everton: Taudul; Browning, Touray, Lundstram, Duffy; Pennington, Kennedy, Barkley; Vellios (61' Junior (77' Forrester)), Gueye, McAleny (73 Hope).
Subs not used: Griffiths, Hammar.  Scorers: Gueye, McAleny.

Everton's second string held on to beat Norwich 2-1 at Finch Farm yesterday thanks to goals by Magaye Gueye and Conor McAleny, the latter marking his return from almost two months out with what proved to be the winner.

McAleny has been sidelined with an ankle problem but popped up inside the six-yard box to slot home after Gueye had converted from Apostolos Vellios's pass after just eight minutes.

Jacob Murphy pulled one back for the visitors 10 minutes before the break but, despite a late penalty appeal, the Blues held the Canaries off in the second half.

Unfortunately, substitute Francisco Junior had to be withdrawn himself after rolling his ankle.

 Bolton Wanderers 1 - 3 Everton
U-21 National Group 1, Match No 14
Thursday 6 December 2012

Everton: Mucha; Browning, Touray, Lundstram, Duffy; Hammar, Kennedy, Barkley; Vellios, Gueye, Hope.
Subs not used: Taudul, Forrester, Green, Jones, Long.  Scorers: Vellios, Kennedy, Barkley.

An Everton Under-21 side including Duffy, Barkley, Vellios, Gueye defeated Bolton Wanderers on Thursday night to round out the first half of the new season. The goals came from Vellios, Kennedy and Barkley in an impressive 3 - 1 win. Everton finish 4th and will now play the second half of the season in the 'Elite' Group.

Everton began the match brightly and their attacking approach paid dividends when they took the lead after 11 minutes. A long ball played from the left flank by Ibou Touray was expertly controlled under pressure by Vellios before the striker swiftly slotted a low strike from eight yards out.

The Blues continued to show attacking intent and nearly doubled their lead before Bolton even had the chance to recover from the opener. A low cross drilled in from the right wing by Tyias Browning found John Lundstram who didn't hesitate to fire in a vicious strike that was saved.

With the half nearing an end, Everton nearly found a second goal in stunning circumstances courtesy of Lundstram. Kennedy's curling cross found the midfielder on the edge of the area, instead of controlling the ball Lundstram hit a fierce volley destined for the bottom corner was saved.

Against the run of play, the home side managed to level the scoring through a penalty on the stroke of half-time. Bolton striker Sanmi Odelusi broke in behind the Everton backline before going down under what appeared to be minimal contact in the area from Shane Duffy to be awarded a dubious spot-kick that Bolton converted.

After the restart, Everton fought to re-assert themselves and were rewarded when they regained the lead in the 56th minute. Vellios curled the ball through the Bolton defence and Kennedy prodded home to hand Everton a deserved second.

The Blues were unfortunate not to extend their lead further from a Magaye Gueye free-kick, whipped in a cross that was met by Duffy but the defender could only direct his effort straight at the keeper. Moments later, quick reflexes from Mucha prevented Bolton from leveling the score again. Duffy rose to head Gueye's corner at goal but was unlucky to see his attempt fly straight at the keeper yet again.

In the dying moments of the game, Everton's pressure paid off as they got the third goal to guarantee the victory. A cross from the energetic Gueye ricocheted around the area and into the path of Barkley who fired an unstoppable effort into the bottom corner to seal all three points.

 Blackburn Rovers 0 - 3 Everton
U-21 Elite Group,  Match No 1
Monday 14 January 2013
Finch Farm

Everton: Mucha; Browning, Oviedo, Junior, Duffy; Hammar, Gueye, Lundstram; Vellios, McAleny (46' Johns (81' Green)) , Hope.
Subs not used: Springthorpe, Jones, McLaughlin.  Scorers: McAleny, Junior, Lundstram.

Everton's U21s beat Blackburn Rovers in convincing fashion this evening, registering a 3 - 0 victory thanks to goals by Conor McAleny, Francisco Junior and John Lundstram.

Apostolos Vellios came close to adding a fourth with a spectacular overhead kick and the hosts were denied a late consolation from the penalty spot when Jan Mucha saved from Edinho Junior as the Blues — playing in all black this evening — ran out easy winners.

 Fulham 0 - 1 Everton
U-21 Elite Group,  Match No 2
Monday 11 February 2013
Motspur Park, London

Everton: Springthorpe; Stones, Browning, Duffy, Garbutt; Lundstram, Kennedy (76' Johns), Junior (15' Hope); Vellios, McAleny, Grant.
Subs not used: Griffiths, Long, Molyneux.  Scorers: McAleny.

Everton's U21s beat Fulham 1-0 at Motspur Park this evening thanks to a first-half strike by Conor McAleny. With John Stones playing for the first time in defence, the Blues were the superior side before the break despite losing Francisco Junior to injury.

Fulham pressed harder after the break, though, and hit the woodwork twice but could not find the equaliser to deny Alan Stubbs' men.

McAleny, who spent a number of weeks out with ankle ligament damage towards the end of last year, has now scored four times for the U21s this season, tonight's goal moving him level with defender Shane Duffy as top scorer.

 Everton 2 - 0 Middlesbrough
U-21 Elite Group,   Match No 3
Monday 17 February 2013
Merseyrail Community Stadium, Southport

Everton: Mucha; Stones, Junior, Duffy, Garbutt; Browning, Hope, Barkley, Vellios (79' C Duffus), McAleny, Lundstram.
Subs not used: Springthorpe, Johns, McLaughlin, Adelson.  Scorers: Lundstram, Barkley.

Early on Vellios was denied by an agile save from Middlesbrough goalkeeper Connor Ripley. It didn’t take Everton long to get ahead however – John Lundstram taking the ball down well and hitting a low drive which went past Ripley who perhaps might have done better. Regardless Everton were 1-0 ahead and deservedly so given how dominant we had been in the opening exchanges.

At the other end, Mucha was largely untroubled as Duffy and Browning were moping up well ahead of him with Garbutt and Stones providing effective cover from the flanks. Vellios almost doubled our money before the break with a clever backheel which was kept out by Ripley, whilst on one or two other occasions a bit more composure could have reaped better rewards. Comfortable stuff as we went into half-time.

Into the second half and there were no half-time changes from either team and it was generally more of the same – Everton dominant, Middlesbrough quite resilient though generally second-best. The visitors did have a few openings but Mucha was able to repel their attempts without too much discomfort. Two thirds into the game Everton’s two star players combined to effectively seal the win. Junior did very well to win the ball and play it forward to Barkley who, with still a lot to do, was able to run it into the box and slot past Ripley from quite a tight angle.

As the clock ticked on, Vellios was replaced by Duffus as Everton saw the game out. Away we went at full-time, back home after a nice day out. It’s a great idea to make these games free for season ticket holders and £5 Adults, £3 Children. That’s five wins in a row now for the U21 team with three clean sheets on the spin also.

 Sunderland 2 - 2 Everton
U-21 Elite Group,  Match No 4
Monday 25 February 2013
Merseyrail Community Stadium, Southport

Everton: Springthorpe; Stones, Garbutt, Molyneux (56' Long), Browning; Pennington, Kennedy, Grant; Hope, McAleny, Junior.
Subs not used: Griffiths, Touray, Green, Jones.  Scorers: McAleny, Junior.

The Blues' second string were trailing 2-0 before Conor McAleny, now top scorer for Alan Stubb's side this season, pulled a goal back midway through the second half.

And a 30-yard stunner by Francisco Junior salvaged a 2-2 draw for the Blues with 10 minutes left.

 Everton 3 - 2 Blackburn Rovers
U-21 Elite Group,  Match No 5
Monday 4 March 2013
Merseyrail Community Stadium, Southport

Everton: Springthorpe; Stones, Browning, Duffy, Garbutt; Junior, Barkley, Hitzlsperger; Vellios Kennedy (67' Hope), McAleny.
Subs not used: Griffths, Kelly, Oviedo, Grant.  Scorers: Barkley, Vellios, McAleny.

Everton's Under-21 side with a number of recognized reserves and first-team fringe players secured an amazing comeback to win 3-2 over Blackburn Rovers at Southport this evening. Three goals in the final 14 minutes saw Everton come from two down to maintain their unbeaten start to 2013.

Ross Barkley drove the ball home from a near-impossible angle before Apostolos Vellios stabbed home to level the scores with four minutes remaining for Conor McAleny to provide a cool finish and give his side what could prove a priceless win.


 Chelsea 0 - 1 Everton
U-21 Elite Group, Match No 6
Monday 11 March 2013
Cobham, London

Everton: Springthorpe; Stones, Garbutt, Junior, Duffy; Browning, Hope, Barkley; Vellios (86' Kennedy), McAleny, Grant.
Subs not used: Kelly, Long, Touray, Molyneux.  Scorers: McAleny.
Yellow Cards:
N/A Red Cards: Barkley (89')  

Everton Under-21s did very well to win 1-0 at Chelsea this evening, through another fantastic goal from young striker Conor McAleny. Picking up the ball 30 yards from goal, McAleny strode forward, looked up and let fly to spectacularly notch his fifth goal in just six second-string outings.

But the brilliant result was tainted somewhat by the dismissal of Ross Barkley in the 89th minute, apparently for raising his hand to an opponent's face as Chelsea prepared to take a free-kick.


 Everton 2 - 2 Aston Villa
U-21 Elite Group,  Match No 7
Sunday 17 March 2013
Merseyrail Community Stadium, Southport

Everton: Springthorpe; Pennington, Garbutt, Browning, Junior, Duffy; Grant, Barkley, Vellios (81' Kennedy), McAleny, Hope.
Subs not used: Griffiths, Kelly, Long, Touray.  Scorers: McAleny, Hope.

Everton's U21s seemed destined for another win on the back of goals by Conor McAleny and Hallam Hope but Aston Villa's second string came back from 2-0 down to hold the Blues to a 2-2 draw.

McAleny scored yet again to open the scoring at the Merseyrail Community Stadium and it was the 20-year-old who set up Hope to head home in the second half to double the lead.

Daniel Johnson pulled one back almost immediately for the visitors, however, and the same player struck the equaliser four minutes from time to deny Everton victory.

Alan Stubbs' men remain unbeaten in 2013, however, and are six points clear at the top of Group 1.

 Everton 1 - 1 Fulham
U-21 Elite Group,  Match No 8
Monday 8 April 2013
Merseyrail Community Stadium, Southport

Everton: Springthorpe; Hibbert (67' Kellly), Garbutt, Junior, Stones; Browning, Duffy, Grant; Vellios (80' Long), Hope, Kennedy.
Subs not used: Griffiths, Pennington, Molyneux    Scorers: Duffy.

Tony Hibbert returned to action for the first time this year when he played 65 minutes Everton U21s this evening in their game against Fulham at Southport.

The veteran fullback underwent surgery on his calf towards the end of last year and has spent the last four months recovering. The Blues' second string were pegged back by the Londoners in a 1-1 draw.

Shane Duffy scored for Everton with a header off a Luke Garbutt free kick and almost struck a winner but his shot thumped off the crossbar.

 Middlesbrough 1 - 2 Everton
U-21 Elite Group, Match No 9
Monday 15 April 2013

Everton: Springthorpe, Hibbert, Garbutt, Junior, Stones; Browning, Long, Grant; Vellios, Hope (60' Waring), Kennedy.
Subs not used: Griffiths, Hammar, Molyneux, Pennington.   Scorers: Kennedy.

Tony Hibbert made another big step to full recovery after his long absence this season with a calf injury, helping the Everton U21 side to a an impressive 2-1 win at Middlesbrough, who took the lead early in the first half. Matt Kennedy equalized before Apostolos Vellios fired them ahead from the penalty spot in the second half.

The hosts took an early lead after two minutes as Fewster capitalised on a mistake from Springthorpe. Springthorpe then made amends with a superb save, diving to his right and tipping Park's 25-yard free-kick over the bar for a corner

Kennedy made it 1-1 with a clever flick from close range following a cross from the right after 30 minutes. At the other end, Springthorpe produced a great save to tip Sirrell's left-foot effort over the bar.

Everton started the second half well. Hibbert and Vellios combine before Long's low shot is well saved by Ripley. Vellios then scored from the penalty spot to put the Blues ahead after Sirrell had handled inside the area.

 Everton 0 - 0 Sunderland
U-21 Elite Group,  Match No 10
Monday 22 April 2013
Merseyrail Community Stadium, Southport

Everton: Springthorpe; Hibbert, Browning, Duffy, Stones; Junior, Garbutt (46' Pennington), Grant; Vellios (46' Waring), Long, Kennedy.
Subs not used: Griffiths, Hammar, Molyneux.  Scorers: None

Despite dominating much of the game, including much of the second period, the firing squad of Apostolos Vellios, Chris Long et al could not make celebrations sweeter.

Everton had much the better openings in the first period, as Apostolos Vellios, Chris Long and Tyias Browning all came close. After mosly half-chances, Long had the best opportunity on 27 minutes when he caught the Black Cats napping at the back.

Stubbs made two changes at the break, replacing Garbutt with Matthew Pennington and Vellios with in-form Under-18s forward George Waring. And the additions forced the Blues into an improved second-half showing.

Right-back Pennington looked to have carved the golden opportunity required, but Long could only head his swinging cross over the crossbar on 53 minutes.

Francisco Junior was next to trouble the palms of Pickford, with the Portuguese midfielder forcing a save following John Stones' cut-back.

The lively Long would go close on a further two occasions, firstly tricking his way around a defender only to see his shot hit the side-netting, before seeing another effort denied by the Sunderland keeper.

 Everton 0 - 0 Chelsea
U-21 Elite Group, Match No 11
Thursday 25 April 2013
Merseyrail Community Stadium, Southport

Everton: Griffiths; Stones, Browning, Ledson, Garbutt; Hammar, Jones, Williams (87' Grant); C Duffus (77' Long), Green, Kennedy.
Subs not used: Pennington, McLaughlin, Adelson.  Scorers: None

Everton Under-21s extended their unbeaten run to 14 matches after being held to a goalless draw by an experienced Chelsea U21s side. Debuts were handed to several academy players including Russell Griffiths, Joe Williams and Ryan Ledson.

Everton actually conjured their best opportunity of the half in their first attack of the game when Chelsea goalkeeper denied Williams after a jinking run through midfield from George Green.

The Slovakian, who had earlier planted a header over the crossbar, seized on a loose backpass but clipped his finish against the outside of the post after being presented with a clear run on goal.

Johan Hammar headed onto the roof of the net as Everton rallied just before the interval. After the break, Williams blazed over from 20 yards following a half-cleared corner and Green, having been fed by Gethin Jones, raced into the area and fired narrowly wide of the far post.

The second half was all about Everton as the Blues continued to take the game to their London opponents. Ledson, substitute Chris Long and Green again were all off target with drives from just outside the area. Even full-back John Stones saw a late effort blocked as the Blues remained purposeful right through to the very end. Time eventually ran out for Everton who visit Aston Villa next Monday.

 Aston Villa 0 - 0 Everton
U-21 Elite Group, Match No 12
Monday 29 April 2013

Everton: Griffiths; Stones, Garbutt, Ledson, Duffy, Browning; Jones, Williams; Vellios (50' Green), Duffus, Kennedy.
Subs not used: Grant, Pennington, Molyneux, Touray.  Scorers: None.

Everton's second string played out a third successive goalless draw against NextGen champions, Aston Villa, that means the Blues finish the regular season on a 15-game unbeaten run that stretches back to November.
Alan Stubbs fielded a young side at at Bodymoore Heath that more than matched their hosts, particulalrly in the second half.

Both teams hit the woodwork in a lively encounter and Shane Duffy had an injury time header palmed away by the Villa goalkeeper to keep the scoresheet blank.

Everton will now play off against either Newcastle or Bolton with a place in the final four on offer.

 Everton 3 - 3 Newcastle United (5 - 4 on Penalties)
U21 League Playoff Quarterfinal
Tuesday 7 May 2013
Goodison Park, Liverpool

Everton: Mucha; Stones, Oviedo, Lundstram, Duffy, Browning; Kennedy (110' Grant), Barkley; McAleny (91' Duffus), Naismith, Long (105' Garbutt).
Subs not used: Springthorpe, Green.  Scorers: McAleny, Naismith, Lundstram

Everton Under-21s secured a semi-final matchup with Tottenham after a stunning game against Newcastle at Goodison Park ended level after extra time and Bryan Oviedo scored the winner in a penalty shootout. After the home side had the better of the first half, Long hit the post early in the second but it was Ameobi who struck first for Newcastle.

McAleny fired home a quick equaliser for the Blues with 21 minutes to go, though, and Naismith fired Everton into a 77th-minute lead. Celebrations were cut short, though, when Inman leveled matters once more six minutes later and after Long was denied by the woodwork at the death of regulation time, the game went into extra time.

Newcastle took the lead for the second time when Richardson charged down an attempted clearance by Mucha and slotted home to make it 3-2 eight minutes into the first period. That looked to be that but another equaliser, this time by John Lundstram with five minutes left, rescued the Blues and set up penalties to complete the drama on a wild night at Goodison.

With Bigirimana putting his spot-kick wide, the Blues just had to hold their nerve, which they did as Stones, Duffy, Barkley, Garbutt and Oviedo successfully converted all of their five penalties.

 Tottenham Hotspur 3 - 2 Everton
U21 League Playoff Semifinal
Monday 13 May 2013
Merseyrail Community Stadium, Southport

Everton: Mucha; Stones, Garbutt, Lundstram, Browning; Duffy, Kennedy (20' Duffus), Barkley, McAleny, Long, Gran (88' Molyneux).
Subs not used: Springthorpe, Green, Pennington.  Scorers: McAleny, Long.

A fairly strong Everton U-21 side including Lundstram, Duffy, Barkley and McAleny but shorn of any experienced over-age players had to come from behind twice before they sucumbed to a late goal at White Hart Lane on Monday night. The loss brings to an end the 16-match unbeaten run for the former Reserves side and prevents them from challenging for the League trophy in the final.

After Spurs had opened the scoring on 10 minutes, Conor McAleny's goal in first half stoppage time ensured it was all-square at the break. Tottenham were back in front moments after the restart before Chris Long replied to make it 2-2 almost immediately.

Everton were the team in the ascendency throughout the majority of the second half but a goal for the home side on 89 minutes ensured it was Tottenham who progressed through to the final where they will play Manchester United or Liverpool.

 Tranmere Rovers 2 - 1 Everton
Liverpool Senior Cup Final 2011-12
Wednesday 1 August 2012
Prenton Park, Birkenhead

Everton: Mucha; Coleman, Duffy (C), Bidwell, Garbutt; Junior (72' Hope), Kelly (45' Lundstram) Barkley, Rodwell; Vellios, McAleny.
Subs used:
Taudal, Browning, Forrester. Scorers:  Vellios

A mixture of Academy, reserve and senior players turned out against Tranmere Rovers in the Liverpool Senior Cup Final at Prenton Park this evening and were beaten by a late goal by Andy Robinson. 

Even the presence of a string of players with Premier League experience in Seamus Coleman, Shane Duffy, Jack Rodwell, Ross Barkley and Apostolos Vellios could not help the Toffees second-string produce much of note as they lost last season's delayed Liverpool Senior Cup Final to Tranmere Rovers in injury time.

A healthy crowd watched Ronnie Moore’s side largely out-muscle their younger opponents, who will hopefully at least have benefited from a rigorous workout against a solid and occasionally exciting League One outfit. At least the locals got some entertainment value too – with three penalties in normal time and a last-gasp winner to keep them engaged into the night at Prenton Park.

Typically of how things were to pan out, Tranmere created the first opportunity, when French trialist Jonathan Tehoue flashed a first time volley from six yards over the bar after good work from ex-Everton Academy player James Wallace.

The scare seemed to spark a sluggish Everton side into life, as they began to keep hold of the ball better and almost score after a slick passing move involving Francisco Junior and Coleman which saw Conor McAleny’s shot saved by 6 ft - 9 in Jason Mooney in the Rovers’ goal. In reply, Andy Robinson curled a shot only narrowly over Jan Mucha’s cross bar from 15 yards. Neither side were creating many opportunities as a scrappy tempo developed but Everton’s extra class eked out a decisive opening.

First Ross Barkley’s nicely weighted through-ball to saw McAleny’s shot blocked by Mark McChrystal, then from a corner the visitors edged in front. As Tranmere’s defenders switched off Garbutt’s inswinging corner was volleyed home easily by Apostolos Vellios from around the penalty spot.

Ronnie Moore’s side dusted themselves off and responded brightly, with lively new boy Abdulai Bell-Baggie working his way through on goal only to be denied by a timely sliding block from Jake Bidwell. As half time approached, McAleny and Barkley linked up smartly, to allow the later a chance to unleash a venomous effort that flew just outside Mooney’s post.

The Toffees should really have created more in the first half given the number of their players with Premier League experience, and although Barkley looked to join the attack from his right wing berth as much as possible, Mooney was not troubled enough. Indeed it was Rovers right back Danny Holmes who had the last chance of the opening half with a deflected shot.

The second half started in similar fashion, as Rovers were awarded a penalty when Jean Louis Akpa Akpro was impeded. Fortunately Mucha made a fine diving save to force Andy Robinson’s spot kick around the post. Then from the corner Tehoue’s athletic volley thundered over the bar. And 10 minutes later Robinson’s clever cross found Akpro unmarked in the area but his header was directed wastefully wide.

Urged on by their frustrated bench, Everton responded, and Conor McAleny won a penalty after shimmying into the area and being upended by Danny Holmes. Unfortunately his effort was too close to Mooney who saved smartly.

More spot-kicks seemed to be on the cards with the dead-lock drifting into extra-time, but then Moore’s men struck decisively. Akpro, who had shown impressive movement all night, caught Everton’s defence too far upfield and set Robinson free with only Mucha to beat. That he did confidently, allowing Rovers to smile for the cameras with the cup as those in blue got ready to face the wrath of Alan Stubbs.

 AFC Liverpool v Everton
Liverpool Senior Cup
Monday 25 March 2013
Valerie Park, Prescott

This match was rescheduled from December 2012, but had to be postponed with snow covering the pitch. 

Everton woul then withdraw from the competion, citing a fixture pile-up in the Under-21s League, granting a bye to AFC Liverpool.

 UNDER-21s � APPEARANCES, 2012-13

Player Apps (Sub) Goals
 Tyias Browning 27 (1)  0
 Shane Duffy 24 (0)  6
 Apostolos Vellios 22 (0)  4
 Matthew Kennedy 19 (2)  4
 Francisco Junior 18 (1)  2
 Luke Garbutt 17 (2)  0
 John Lundstram 15 (1)  3
 Hallam Hope 12 (6)  2
 Conor Grant 12 (5)  2
 John Stones 12 (0)  0
 Conor McAleny 11 (1)  10
 Ross Barkley 11 (0)  3
 Jan Mucha 9 (0)  0
 Mateusz Taudal 9 (0)  0
 Ibou Touray 8 (1)  0
 Magaye Gueye 8 (0)  2
 Johan Hammar 8 (0)  0
 Mason Springthorpe 8 (0)  0
 Matthew Pennington 7 (3)  1
 Jake Kelly 6 (2)  0
 Chris Long 5 (7)  1
 Thomas Hitzlsperger 5 (0)  0
 Gethin Jones 4 (3)  0
 George Green 4 (2)  0
 Tony Hibbert 4 (0)  0
 Anton Forrester 3 (4)  0
 Bryan Oviedo 3 (0)  0
 Sylvain Distin 3 (0)  0
 Courtney Duffus 2 (3)  0
 Jake Bidwell 2 (0)  0
 Russell Griffiths 2 (0)  0
 Ryan Ledson 2 (0)  0
 Joe Williams 2 (0)  0
 Tom Molyneux 1 (1)  0
 Darron Gibson 1 (0)  0
 Steven Naismith 1 (0)  1
 Victor Anichebe 1 (0)  0
 Jasper Johns 0 (3)  0
 George Waring 0 (2)  0
 Jake Adelson 0 (0)  0
 Ben McLaughlin 0 (0)  0
 Joao Silva 0 (0)  0

  Reserves and Under-23 Players from this season who moved on include:





 FRIENDLIES, 2012-13
 Airdrie United 1 - 2 Everton
Reserves Pre-Season Friendly #1
Saturday 21 July 2012
Airdrie, Scotland

Everton:   Tadul; Browning, Garbutt, Lundstram, Hammar; Bidwell, Green, Barkley; McAleny, Hope, Grant.
Subs not used: Springthorpe, Touray, Long, Jones, Forrester.  Scorers: Barkley, Garbutt

Everton's reserves made their way into the final of ARR Craib Cup tomorrow after beating Airdrie United 2-1 this afternoon with goals from Barkley and Garbutt. The Blues are joined in the four-team tournament by a Celtic XI who were beaten 2-0 by hosts Partick Thistle.
Everton will therefore play Partick Thistle in final on Sunday, kick-off is 2:45 pm at Firhill.

Some match highlights from Twitter:

12mins: Green drills low shot just wide.

52 mins: Arthur saves well from Lundstram. Good footwork then by Green but he shoots over.

56 mins: Great play by Hope with Barkley running on to his pass and slotting home: 0-1

62 mins: Lovely free-kick in off the bar from the edge of the box by Garbutt after Griffin handball: 0-2

70 mins: Tadul makes a great save from fantastic MacDonald strike.

Penalty to Airdrie. Bain goes down under Garbutt's challenge after a lovely pass by Di Giacomo who fires home the spot-kick: 1-2.

 Partick Thistle 3 - 1 Everton
Reserves Pre-Season Friendly #2
Sunday 22 July 2012
Firhill, Partick

Everton:   Taudal; Browning, Garbutt, Junior, Hammar; Bidwell, Green, Barkley; Vellios, McAleny, Lundstram.
Subs not used: N/A.  Scorers: McAleny

Everton Reserves went behind after just 2 mins to a sharp header from Sean Welsh for the home side, who have had the upper hand in the first half. A penalty was called early in the second half and Welsh scored his second from the spot but Conor McAleny pulled one back for the Blues. But 2 mins later and the Blues went further behind, and Thistle then had another THREE goals all disallowed for offside as they continued to dominate, despite Ross Barkley coming close near the end.

 Hereford United 0 - 0 Everton
Reserves Pre-Season Friendly #3
Saturday 28 July 2012

Everton:   Mucha, Browning, Garbutt, Hammar, Bidwell, Junior, Barkley, Lundstram, Hope, Forrester (71' Long), McAleny, Hope (77' Grant).
Subs not used: Taudul, Touray, Green.  Scorers: None

Very few chances of note arrived in a game short in imagination but drenched with perspiration. Jan Mucha was the senior member of a youthful side as the Slovakian international returned from injury to make his first pre-season appearance.

Francisco Junior got another run-out having been involved in the first-team matches so far this summer, and his quality was on show in the early stages as he shuttled the ball around with authority and sent a booming long-range volley over the bar.

After forcing a succession of corners and seeing Anton Forrester's penalty appeals ignored, Conor McAleny worked a yard in the box and passed a side-footed shot inches wide as he looked for the bottom corner.

Ross Barkley, John Lundstram and Forrester all unleashed from range but still an opener eluded the visitors, and five minutes before the interval they were grateful to Mucha as he smothered the ball following a goalmouth scramble.
Lundstram drilled in another low strike early in the second period but it was the hosts who stepped things up and Mucha had to make two more good saves. 

Bangor City 0 - 6 Everton
Reserves Pre-Season Friendly #4
Saturday 4 August 2012

Everton:   Team included: Garbutt, Hope, Touray, Browning, Bidwelll, Barkley, Hammar, Long, McAleny, Lundstram, Forrester.
Subs not used: Subs.  Scorers: Hope 2, Barkley, Long, McAleny, Lundstram.

Hallam Hope got the game off and running early on, finishing Conor McAleny's squared ball with aplomb.

The forward then got a second just before half time after good work from Tyias Browning had carved the Citizens open.

Ross Barkley was next on the scoresheet, finishing expertly from outside the box before Chris Long claimed the fourth — although his strike was recorded as an own goal after rebounding into the goalkeeper.

McAleny was on hand to net the Blues' fifth, popping up with a bullet header after Long had played in Browning to deliver a pinpoint cross.

And John Lundstram wrapped things up with five minutes to go after Anton Forrester had cushioned the ball down for the midfielder to strike.

 Everton 2 - 2 Blackpool
Reserves Pre-Season Friendly #5
Friday 9 August 2012
Finch Farm  

Everton: Taudul, Browning, Bidwell, Duffy, Jagielka, Green, Junior, Garbutt, Barkley, McAleney, Vellios
Subs used: Forrester, Hope   Scorers: Forrester, Hope

Anton Forrester and Hallam Hope came off the bench to grab a goal a piece.



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