U23s draw 0-0 with Arsenal

Monday, 11 March, 2019 28comments  |  Jump to last

Everton U23s preserved their 4-point lead atop Premier League 2 with a 0-0 draw against Arsenal at Southport this evening.

David Unsworth named a strong unchanged team, featuring Joao Virginia in goal but they found it hard going in the early stages of the game, the referee denying a penalty claim when Bassala Sambou was brought down.

There were other opportunities for Feeney and Hornby but it remained scoreless at the end, with 2nd-place Brighton also drawing their game 2-2.

Everton U23s: Virginia, Astley, Galloway, Markelo, Feeney, Gibson, Bowler, Adeniran, Hornby (75'Gordon), Sambou, Broadhead.
Subs not Used: Hewelt, Ouzounidis, Foulds, Denny.


Reader Comments (28)

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Kevin Prytherch
1 Posted 11/03/2019 at 08:33:32
Any news if it’s on YouTube anywhere?
Michael Kenrick
2 Posted 11/03/2019 at 17:43:21
No indication at all that even the Red Echo will be following this match, with only cursory references on their daily stream that it is being played, among the odd link to old stories.

It really is pathetic that neither the local paper's nor the club's website care that much about the U23s despite their fantastic record this season... although perhaps it's a direct response to the very clear lack of interest from the huge majority of Evertonians who aren't that fussed.

Playing matches in Southport and not Liverpool may be the biggest factor? But you have to believe that, if the whole enterprise was promoted more, the level of interest would increase in response.

Never mind, we're doing a great job at Everton in the Community, and that's all that really matters, eh? [Kicks soapbox away in disgust...]

Michael Kenrick
3 Posted 11/03/2019 at 17:49:03
And news now that Everton Under-23s’ Premier League Cup last 16 clash with Sunderland will take place at Southport FC’s Merseyrail Community Stadium on Saturday 16 March, with kick-off at 2pm.

Why the hell is not being played at Goodison Park?

Brent Stephens
4 Posted 11/03/2019 at 17:59:47
I had to messsage Everton about where the match is being played, as the Fixtures section on the official site just indicated "TBC". They confirmed Southport but the official site hasn't been updated. Pathetic.
Phill Thompson
8 Posted 11/03/2019 at 18:48:29
This from the official site :

Everton can go seven points clear at the top of Premier League 2 with a win against Arsenal at Southport tonight.

The Blues line up: Virginia, Astley, Galloway, Markelo, Feeney, Gibson, Bowler, Adeniran, Hornby, Sambou, Broadhead. Subs: Ouzounidis, Hewelt, Foulds, Denny, Gordon

John Raftery
9 Posted 11/03/2019 at 18:56:11
Possibly the reason Saturday’s Cup tie is at Southport rather than Goodison is that we have a home Premier League game the following day.
Phill Thompson
10 Posted 11/03/2019 at 19:23:29
0-0 after 20 mins plus this :

News coming through from Blackburn Rovers that Brighton Under-23s have taken the lead. As it stands, the gap at the top is reduced to two points.

We were 4 points ahead of Brighton at start of play, 4 games each to play, including Brighton at home in April.

Sam Hoare
11 Posted 11/03/2019 at 19:51:46
0-0 at half time. Everton on top mostly.
Phill Thompson
12 Posted 11/03/2019 at 20:20:29
0-0 after 60 minutes.
Les Newsham
13 Posted 11/03/2019 at 20:55:42
Full time 0:0
Phill Thompson
14 Posted 11/03/2019 at 20:55:46

Les Moorcroft
15 Posted 11/03/2019 at 20:56:13
0-0 full time.
Paul Birmingham
16 Posted 11/03/2019 at 20:57:35
Nil-Nil, seems like a scrappy game, and Bowler had the ball in minutes from full-time, but it was offside.

Last I heard Blackburn had drawn level with Brighton, which if it stays, is a decent result for us.

We need to beat Brighton at home and hopefully salvage some pride at U23-level from this lousy season.

Phill Thompson
17 Posted 11/03/2019 at 20:58:42
Brighton were drawing 2-2 with Blackburn, so if that stays the score we remain 4 points clear of them at the top . Could win the league if we beat them in April
Jay Wood

18 Posted 11/03/2019 at 21:03:56
Confirmed final score Phil.

Brighton pulled back to 2-2 by Blackburn after leading 2-0, so Everton remains 4 points clear of the Seagulls with 3 games to play.

Paul Hewitt
19 Posted 11/03/2019 at 21:13:46
So much better than the first team
Sam Hoare
20 Posted 11/03/2019 at 21:29:12
Wonder if we’ll see any of these lads given first team time over the last 8 games. Probably not given the pressure Silva is under.

Josh Bowler has apparently looked very good in last few games. And given Pickfords issues I’d be interested in having a look at Virginia, though he’s only 19.

Mike Doyle
21 Posted 11/03/2019 at 22:07:38
Be good to see some of the U23 lads given a go (especially Anthony Gordon as, according to the Echo, half the Bundesliga are after him).

However as each position in the league table is worth just over £1million I expect Silva will be under some pressure to finish in the top 10 rather than the bottom 10.

Given the losses we'll be making on outgoing sales in the summer, a few million extra might come in handy.

John Raftery
22 Posted 11/03/2019 at 22:34:59
Barring an injury crisis, I can't see any of tonight's Under-23s appearing in the first team this season. From what I have seen, none of them look ready for a Premier League team, especially a struggling Premier League team.
Sam Hoare
23 Posted 12/03/2019 at 09:43:20
I think you're probably right, John, though it's hard to say that any player at this level looks totally ready for the Premier League. Except for the odd precocious talent like Rooney or Barkley maybe.

Many were very surprised by the impact Marcus Rashford has made, for example.

This team is on course to win their second Premier League 2 title in 3 years and I reckon a few of them have the ability to forge careers at the top level. Just difficult to know who until they are out there playing first-team games, week-in and week-out.

One thing is certain and that is Brands will have a good knowledge of them and will demand that the most promising are involved with the first team in pre-season. Where possible, he will be looking for first-team solutions from inside the club and I suspect we will see less spending this Summer than we have seen in the last few years.

I expect Feeney and Holgate to replace Jagielka and Williams. Robinson to replace Baines. Dowell or Vlasic or Onyekuru to replace Mirallas. Virginia perhaps to replace Stekelenburg. Possibly even Baningime or Adeniran to replace Gueye.

A big sticking point may be whether Brands believes that Calvert-Lewin can develop into the striker we need or whether he feels he has to earmark £40m+ for that new striker. Recent comments from him suggest he may go the former path. Worth pointing perhaps out that Richarlison and Calvert-Lewin are the first and third highest scorers in the Premier League aged 21 or under.

Clive Rogers
24 Posted 12/03/2019 at 10:13:50
Dowell and Holgate must surely be drafted into the first team squad after their consistently good reports. Onyekuru also, assuming he gets a work permit. The other leading candidates may have to wait one or two years.
Alan J Thompson
25 Posted 12/03/2019 at 16:03:02
I don't want to put the mocker on them but if they were to win this competition, or have the chance to in their last home game, would it be possible for them to have a game at Goodison for fans to show their appreciation?
Phill Thompson
26 Posted 12/03/2019 at 16:17:55
Alan, our last home game is against Brighton 15th April. In theory if results go our way it can be won in the next set of games I.e Brighton lose, we win. But it’s highly likely that it will go to that last home game, and if we beat them we win the League. It’s worthy of being played at Goodison and televised.
Alan J Thompson
27 Posted 12/03/2019 at 16:33:34
Phill (#26, no relation, unless you're the Duke of Edin...no, mother would have said something). Sounds like a suitable cause for an email campaign as I doubt the club hierarchy would have given it any consideration.
Mike Gaynes
28 Posted 12/03/2019 at 16:36:56
Clive #24, probably two out of the three.

It would be a vast overstatement to characterize the reports on Dowell as "consistently good"... he's been a part-timer at best for Sheffield and didn't get off the bench for their 2-0 win over Rotherham on Saturday. He has one goal and one assist this season, hardly burning the house down.

By contrast Holgate has been a 100% starter at right-back for West Brom, at least until this past Saturday when he missed the game with Ipswich through injury. His manager Darren Moore was sacked after the game despite the Baggies being 4th in the table.

Onyekuru has been hot and cold at Galatasaray with 11 goals in 33 games overall, 11 in 23 in the league. His two goals yesterday were his first in a couple of months. You can check him out here — he's #21 with the blond streak scoring the second and fourth goals. Very cool, no celebrations. https://www.beinsports.com/us/turkish-super-league/video/highlights-galatasaray-5-0-antalyaspor/1137045

I'm quite sure we'll bring Henry and Morgan back in this summer (if possible with Henry), but it wouldn't surprise me if we've seen the last of Kieran. He just doesn't make an impact.

Justin Doone
29 Posted 13/03/2019 at 11:05:42
Firstly I don't think we should be in a rush to push them up into the first team if they are not going to play.

Better to develop with real game time on loan or stay in the U23 set up and keep learning, playing, working hard.

I like Dowell. He reminds of Lallana who himself was a late bloomer. Not the quickest nor the strongest but learnt and practised against lower league opposition until Saints got promoted. He then had the confidence to and a manager that trusted him to learn and adapt.

Dowell needs to improve, be a little more direct at times but he has the tools to do it. He just needs to keep learning and have the belief. I think by the time he's 25/26 he could be a top player.

Similar with the majority of young players. The Premier League has improved both technically and physically which makes it harder for younger players plus the pressure on manager's who get no time to experiment.

This is seen at all teams. Mostly chronic injury problems are how youngster get their chance. Those who break through are usually physically advantaged, ie, vVery fast or exceptional.

Kevin Prytherch
30 Posted 13/03/2019 at 11:13:37
There was an article I was reading that contained an interview with Dowell.

He was saying that the Sheffield Utd manager has 5 players for 3 positions (I think) and mixes them up depending on fatigue and the opposition, so none of them expects to play every game. He also spoke of the lack of game time and how tired he was feeling towards the end of the first few matches.

He has been indifferent, Man of the Match to anonymous. However, he's played 9 times so far (I think) and will probably play at least another 6-8 times this season.

Anyone any idea what the shed Utd fans think of him?

Sam Hoare
31 Posted 13/03/2019 at 11:55:15
Kevin, my impression is that Sheffield Utd fans have warmed to him. Or had, until his last match where he was fairly useless (or bypassed depending on who you believe) and subbed off earlier.

His replacement, Duffy had a MotM appearance in their last game so it may be that Kieran has a fight on his hand to get back in the team and the fans' favour.

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