Everton 1 - 1 Hull City
After the wonder of Wolfsburg and the torment of Tottenham, many thought Hull City to be the perfect opposition to ensure the glory of Goodison. The team as revealed was well received and led to a relaxed atmosphere as many took advantage of a 7:45pm kick-off to have an L4 chippy tea, a couple of bevvies, and a walk-up on a clear frosty night to witness the mighty Blues tame the Tigers.
After Jelavic had received a fine reception as his name was called, the first half went much as expected with the only worry being that we were only one goal up when it could have easily been four at the break. Hull had not had one effort on target whereas we had about five – albeit just one with the right application. It took 15 minutes to get going for the Blues and I must say they were the quietest 15 minutes I have heard at a home match for a very long time. Hull, who had just two coach loads of fans, were the only noise on offer. Where we merely waiting on the formality of the first goal?
Well, if that was the case, then we were rewarded on 15 minutes. After Lukaku had a strong daisy cutter go straight to the keeper who gathered with aplomb and Barkley had a couple of surging runs which initially looked very dangerous until he tried to go right through the bodies of defenders, which is of course impossible. instead of passing to a player in the same colour shirt as himself, which isn’t. Jagielka then probably upset his manager when he lumped a long one up field which Lukaku did well to head down for Mirallas to leave his marker for dead and from the byline cut the ball back for the onrushing Lukaku to lunge and net. Goodison made a noise at last.
One-nil up and seemingly cruising with Besic having his best game so far and the Belgian duo linking well as Mirallas and Osman caused all sorts of trouble by switching flanks, allowing Lukaku to look more like a £28M man as, with head and feet, he was finding his targets; yet, for all this, we could not muster the chance that creates the goal that kills the game... and that is not for the first time this season. Of the shots on target, a Mirallas cross-shot that the keeper gathered and then a Coleman fast cross flashed across the box and Osman threw out a leg but didn’t catch it just right and the keeper was able to gather. It was instinctive of Osman and with just a little more luck on the contact and we would have been two up – fine margins, eh.
The half-time chat was about how we could be so good v Wolfsburg and not so good against Spurs. The Spurs game was no surprise to me as we never get much there; wasn’t the last time back in 2008?... and didn’t we once get done 10-4? Deffo not our best ground.
The second half started as the first ended with us in the ascendency and Barry played in Lukaku who pulled it back for Mirallas who attempted a chip that almost caught out the keeper but almost is not good enough, it was a good effort though yet I thought he could have gone on a little and put his laces through it.
That to my memory was as close we were going to come during the next 40 mins or so. We seemed to go off the boil and that Spurs match started to worry the mind of many. We seem to have a recurring theme this season for going in front and then seeming to lose mental sharpness and invite the opposition on and quite a few opponents have taken advantage of the situation.
Just after the hour mark our manager swopped Mirallas for Pienaar and, as he trooped off, I could not help thinking that there goes our best chance of a goal, either by scoring himself or by assist... Still, it’s the manager's call, not mine, and anyway he may have just been saving him for Saturday night v Man City and that might be a good thing as I heard one wag call out loudly at the end "God help us on Saturday". Hull then made a sub and Aluko came on and looked lively and proved within five mins of coming on when he squared up Distin and then had him twisting and turning as he left him for dead cut in and beat Howard at his near post. Many thought the keeper should have done better but from my seat it was a hell of a powerful shot.
The half wore on and we seemed to be content to pass the ball about at the back; whenever Hull decided to press us high, once again, we would panic and give the ball away. This was infuriating the faithful and patience was wearing thin, players and fans were certainly not as one. Barkley went on a few forward sorties but just ran into people and fell over. One such incident had smoke coming out of ears as, from one run with a player either side of him not only unmarked but waving arms aloft, he ignored them and lost out. Now I know our manager said in the week that he didn’t mind Ross making a mistake and losing the ball but I did not realise it was an instruction...
The passing about at the back continued as the crowd's patience got thinner and thinner and they were audibly letting them know. The manager took off Besic and put on McGeady and (after Baines recovered from a nasty looking mouth injury) both full backs were deployed high as we looked to get a winner but even with this tactic and players making good forward runs we still persisted in passing around at the back. The fans incandescent now and the clock not just ticking down but racing by as Hull used every time-wasting trick in the book which fair play to the ref he had warned them and played about eight minutes over.
We did force a last-ditch corner and everybody up ready to put their body on the line but guess what: Ross failed to beat the first man with a poor corner and that was the cue for the ground to start to empty. On the whistle, a good majority of those left in the ground gave their verdict by way of loud booing and I did hear one cry of ‘Bobby out, bring back Moyes’ – now that was gut wrenching disappointment being released as you will hear.
MotM? – I will just say Lukaku, Mirallas and Besic looked to play to a standard expected and required.
Overall, I was disappointed with the fare on view but I will not get carried away as there is still a long way to go and some good players to get back fit. The way the league is shaping up, four wins on the bounce and who knows if that could be the kick start needed... Alternatively, four defeats on the bounce and.....
Football — don’t yer just love it.
Keep the faith, lads and lasses, it's only Man City next. Nothing like beating the league champs on their own ground. Who is that shouting "Wake up from that dream!! See you there
UP THE BLUES.
Reader Comments (11)
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 04/12/2014 at 21:55:31
Short corners! What's that all about?
I dream of a team of Wood, Darracott, Pejic, Lyons, Kenyon, Thomas, Rioch, Dobson, McKenzie, Ross, King and Latchford playing against showers of shite like Hull. Direct, effective exciting football that actually got the crowd going which in turn gets the players going which gets the crowd going.
Have you noticed when watching MotD, Goodison Park is the only ground where individual voices can be heard from the crowd as they're all asleep!
2 Posted 04/12/2014 at 22:29:38
There is no way I wish to have OFM back but I think the manager should have a look at the way he sometimes set up the defence to secure a win. Either that or bring in an Italian defensive specialist to organize them within the style he wants to play.
3 Posted 04/12/2014 at 22:48:21
Someone mentioned getting Roundy back to sort out the defense. God help us if that happens.
4 Posted 05/12/2014 at 06:58:31
You have to take the positives out of it and long term a spine of:
Jags and Stones
McCarthy and Besic
will give us a fighting chance.
However, the number 1 is a problem.
I'm looking forward already to the City report on Sunday morning!
5 Posted 05/12/2014 at 09:20:29
6 Posted 05/12/2014 at 09:39:23
Of course, Bobby is taking all the flak from a game that took me back to the hapless days of Walter Smith when we turned up knowing we were going to see shite.
For all his 'philosophy', he needs to get right into the heads of some of these players who are letting him and the fans down. I think all his exaggerated praise has gone to their heads and they think they can fuck around at will and it will just come right.
As I write, Martinez is on Sky saying his critics should recognise that on a performance basis we've only lost one of the last ten and many of the draws merited wins and the defeat a point!
I have to say that is identical to the line he trotted out when his last team got relegated so nothing new there. But when push comes to shove, he's paid to actually get those 'deserved' extra points rather than claim them of right. Let's hope that this time he is up for the challenge.
7 Posted 05/12/2014 at 11:32:07
Your usual good report otherwise and I do agree with your comments. Barkley is a disappointment and is not showing improvement. He does not look like scoring and by now he should be if he is to reach his potential.
8 Posted 05/12/2014 at 15:27:02
He said Ross had a rare talent which he had encouraged by playing him in 20 games since March. In his usual effusive way he went on to claim 'Ross is a goalscorer who can only get better' and whilst most would agree with the talent bit, just one goal in those 20 games hardly bares out the manager's claim.
I wonder, therefore, as an old pro, yourself, whether you think a 21 year old who has played 50 odd games for a 6 goal return has much hope of ever becoming what most of us would class as 'a goalscorer' ?
9 Posted 05/12/2014 at 15:39:17
I love your match reports and the style you write them.
I have already vented my anger not just about the Hull game but from the latter part of last season when we threw away a CL place, A totally amateur preseason and a very Championship level of performance this season.
Having initially been totally opposed to Martinez appointment I thought I might have been wrong when he injected some life back into the whole club and seemed to heal all the divisiveness of the previous years.
However you cant keep a bad man down and I have seen enough of the manager this year to suggest that he isn't capable of managing a club like Everton but at least your report brought a moment of relief.
10 Posted 05/12/2014 at 16:17:31
11 Posted 05/12/2014 at 20:02:36
At that point in the game, I can understand why Hull indulged in a little time-wasting. I cannot fathom nor excuse Jags, Distin and Howard who were bigger time-wasting culprits. The faithful made it loud and clear what they think about that kind of senseless stupidity. It is hard to believe that Roberto condones or even promotes that kind of juvenile rubbish.
Add Your Comments
In order to post a comment, 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 Talking Points submissions across the site.