Everton 0 - 3 Manchester City

We can still do it.  Dunkirk and Rorke's Drift. Anything is possible if you fight and believe.   

For at least half an hour, we were in this game. Possibly the best team in Europe went through the gears either side of the interval and that was that. But we didn't play too badly considering the opposition.

Credit where due. They are going to equal our 9 titles and deserve it. It shows what good investment and management achieves. I know it's a different era and footballing landscape, but there are parallels. We were, after all, known as the Mersey Millionaires in the '60s, when we achieved success through financial investment and good management. 

I feel dirty and will go to confession, but we needed a favour off Lucifer's children and got one last night. More importantly, we go to Wolves on Saturday and still have control of our own destiny before we take on Bournemouth at the Bear Pit that will be Goodison Park. We take care of ourselves. 

A very early start as I had to leave at 6 am for an early train to Liverpool Lime Street. Don't talk to me about the prices. Clearly Eurovision had an impact. Fantastic showpiece for the city, but it grated me that they went and spoiled it by singing that song as well as the BBC Breakfast show going on about it consistently the next day. Felt sick. 

Anyway, back on topic. I got to Goodison in decent time. Met Rob at the Holy Trinity to have my Goodison Supper Bar chips, peas and onion gravy. We moved on to have a swift one in The Brick. I then had to go and meet Graham, who had my ticket kindly provided by John. And thank you other John for providing the Wolves ticket. I can't thank you all enough.

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I generally do okay with home tickets through my membership, but it has been difficult of late. Away is a non-starter. Bournemouth home is already sold out. 

As I said to someone previously, no other supporters. Rent-a-crowd across the park do not compare despite their self-appreciation. 

If the rumours are true of tickets for Wolves being "offered" for £300, then shame on you, whoever you are. I hope it isn't true. If so, I hope you get found out and I'd gladly meet you to voice my opinion. I get helped by genuine people who never ask for more than the face value. And I am very grateful. We help and support each other when we can. 

We started well and looked lively. I actually thought on the half-hour that we would hold out for a point. But then they showed their class. How times change. 36 years ago, that was us and they were in a worse position than we are now.

As I walked across Stanley Park to do my other ritual of going to The Arkles in respect of my Grandad, I was surrounded by Man City fans gloating. I initially shouted them down and reminded them where they had come from. One day, my mouth will get me into trouble, but we ended up friends and we had a drink together.

I told the barman as he served me that I hate the Arkles decked in Liverpool decoration behind the bar and the cringeworthy "World Famous" signage outside. I explained my reasoning for being there. He told me not to worry. He was an Everton supporter.  

What can you say? As well as what I've already said, City are different class. They exposed exactly what a lot of teams have been doing to us for many weeks now. Mind the flanks and watch the full-backs. 

Nathan Patterson did his best and played well. He is young and can be developed. But eventually he was overwhelmed.

From my position in the Main Stand, I was screaming at the fact that Foden, one of the best current English footballers, had acres of space getting chalk on his boots by stretching the pitch whilst our full-back was clearly doing what he was told and sitting on the edge of our box and then having to inevitably play catch-up. The nice lady sat next to me joined in, but she ended up being a bit more vocal than me, shall we politely say… Maybe that was my fault for encouraging but it was obvious to see. 

I didn't like the reception Holgate got when he came off. Yes, he had a poor game, but he was out of position, out of form, and playing against possibly the best team in Europe who were deliberately exploiting our flanks. I don't like to criticise fellow supporters, I understand passion and venting in the moment, especially in the situation we are in. But as I've said to many, I sometimes wonder if some have actually played football. Only some. Fortunately, most are knowledgeable. 

Anyway, the positives. 

Gueye did his thing as always, faced with De Bruyne. No mean task. Garner continues to impress me on the ball. He's young and will become a very good footballer. 

The centre-backs, faced with that machine, did mostly okay. Gundogan… What a player! A midfielder who makes those late runs into the box. Very difficult to defend. Roy Keane used to do it well. 

I'm a bit concerned about Calvert-Lewin. Was it an injury? Is there something else? Or was it game lost and save him for the next two? I hope the latter. 

If I call out a Man of the Match, once again, Dwight McNeil for me. Lively and creative. Always looking to do something. 


Reader Comments (40)

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Michael Kenrick
1 Posted 16/05/2023 at 10:19:02
De Bruyne???

I never say this because I think it is one of the stupidest things football fans seem to say to each other in the mistaken belief that it reinforces the veracity of their own perceptions… but Danny, you really must have been watching a different game!


Danny O’Neill
2 Posted 16/05/2023 at 10:25:54
Michael, okay, I got that one wrong.

I saw him warming up so must've imagined him being on the pitch.

Their bench made me very jealous and those around me.

Apologies for the mistake.

Christopher Timmins
3 Posted 16/05/2023 at 12:54:32

Frank Lampard rather than Roy Keane was better known for those late runs into the box.

We are owed another away day performance, Brighton was only partial payback for the dreadful performances over the season.

Leeds have a decided advantage playing after Forest and us at the weekend. In addition West Ham have a game on Thursday are now safe unless there is an 11-goal swing between them and Leeds over the final two games.

We have it in our hands and in order to keep it that way we must win on Saturday.

A must-win game!

Andrew Merrick
4 Posted 16/05/2023 at 14:01:51
I enjoy your positive comments, Danny, you embody the right spirit as a diehard much-travelled supporter.

As you say, this is in our hands still. I hate having to hope for results elsewhere to go in our favor, especially when we really need not have been in this predicament again.

Wolves is now a very big game indeed, and I anticipate the most incredible atmosphere for the last day v Bournemouth, getting tingles already...

Joe McMahon
5 Posted 16/05/2023 at 14:07:34
Danny, I wasn't at Dunkirk at the time, but I'd guess there wasn't Boys Pen or anyone getting misty-eyed over footballers from a bygone age.

In all seriousness, I feel like 1998, we will need a hand from a committed professional just like Gianluca Vialli.

Iain Johnston
6 Posted 16/05/2023 at 14:26:24
I have a sneaky feeling about Saturday,

My astrological guts are telling me us and the barcodes will relegate Leicester at the weekend and we'll leapfrog Forest.

For me the final relegation spot is between Leeds & Forest, decided on the 28th.

Palace will beat Forest on the final day as they want the kudos of finishing above Chelsea.

Dennis Stevens
7 Posted 16/05/2023 at 14:38:05
The mention of Dunkirk reminds of my Dad's outrage when some of the chaps at the Legion asked if he was a member of the Dunkirk Veterans Association. As I recall, his retort was along the lines of "I was never part of any bloody retreat!"
Bill Gall
8 Posted 16/05/2023 at 15:29:20
The sad thing about this weekends game, it is again one of those must win games that we have previously wasted. Once again we are facing the same problems that as well as are own performances, we are looking for our nearest relegation teams to fail.

I would hate to see Everton relegated, but if you are incapable of solving your own problems and have to rely on other teams loosing at this time of the season.you don't deserve to be in the Premier League.

We are all aware of the major problem in the Club at the top and there does not seem to be any progress made to solve it, what is going to be different next season.

No one myself included wants to see their club relegated, but this relying on 11 players on the pitch is not solving the group of 5s mismanagement of the club, and until then thousands of supporters are made to suffer with no end in sight.

A positive change is needed, and not just paper talk but action. Moshiri has to either take control of this club or find someone who is genuinely willing to do it. It is no use building a mansion if you cant afford to live in it, you will need income from the Premier league to do it.

David Currie
9 Posted 16/05/2023 at 16:38:19
I don't like the set up with fixtures, Leeds get to play West Ham who only get 2 days rest. Leicester get a whole week rest while Newcastle only get 3 days rest. Still think Leeds will get 2 wins, hard to see us winning 2 games on the bounce. At this point I would take 4 pts and pray that 36 is enough but we have to have DCL playing in both games.
Rob Halligan
10 Posted 16/05/2023 at 16:53:14
David, West Ham play Leeds on Sunday, so three days rest. West Ham are also only travelling to Alkmaar, which is about 30 minutes outside Amsterdam, so it’s not exactly a long flight for them, probably less than an hour. I can’t see Leeds beating either West Ham or spurs. The most they will get will maybe be two draws. They haven’t won since god knows when, so why are they suddenly going to win two on the spin? Also, not quite sure why you think Newcastle are only getting three days rest? They play Brighton at home on Thursday night, then play Leicester on Monday night, so four days rest.
Martin Mason
11 Posted 16/05/2023 at 17:07:33
As nobody really has form or momentum it seems as though results will be statistical and chaotic, emotionally driven, little logic with a lot of disappointment and any 2 oo 4 going down. I don't think that it is negative to think it possible that we could go down as anything could be possible over 2 games. I hope and wish and will go and give what support I can give at Wolves. So far this year I've seen the two away wins and the fine draw at Palace so maybe I can be lucky again.
David Currie
12 Posted 16/05/2023 at 18:04:09
Just don't trust Spurs with their care taker manager situation and don't think they will be up for it. West Ham are now safe so just see Leeds beating both of them but hope I'm wrong. Lets just beat Wolves and get to 35 and put pressure on the other 3 teams.
Ian Edwards
13 Posted 16/05/2023 at 18:05:48
Absolutely bizarrely we have a Ref from Nottingham. Also, the Ref for West Ham v Leeds is an Everton fan.
Nick White
14 Posted 16/05/2023 at 18:07:45
Great article Danny as always. Love the positivity!

I think we will beat Wolves on Saturday and we will be safe then. However, I think we only need 3 more points to be safe anyway (rather than 6) but I’d prefer they come on Saturday instead of a horrible nervy last day.

Ian Edwards
15 Posted 16/05/2023 at 18:14:10
I'm concerned about this weekend. Wolves have won their last 4 home games. As for West Ham v Leeds. West Ham play a European semi on thursday. They will be tired and will rotate. I can see Leeds winning.
Geoff Lambert
16 Posted 16/05/2023 at 18:15:26
Ian I think he supports Tranmere.
Tom Bowers
17 Posted 16/05/2023 at 18:17:34
Nothing is written in stone so let's keep fingers crossed that they can be solid and get the points against a Wolves side with nothing to play for.

Usually that scenario can be the kiss of death but the way they came up dividends against a good Brighton team gives us hope that they can do it again.

Certainly a point wouldn't be bad and then a great home performance against the Bees would suffice.


Brent Stephens
18 Posted 16/05/2023 at 18:23:41
Gueye terrified De Bruyne so much he never wanted to step onto the pitch, Danny!

0/10 for De Bruyne.

Danny O’Neill
19 Posted 16/05/2023 at 18:26:30
Hopefully see you on Saturday Brent.

At least I will be in the away section this time around and not with the home fans like last time around and get my letter of warning.

Ian Edwards
20 Posted 16/05/2023 at 18:43:14
Geoff. I know someone that knows him. He's definitely a blue.
Mark Murphy
21 Posted 16/05/2023 at 21:26:02
Looking forward to my final hurrah this Saturday and meeting up with O'Neil and O'Mason!


Clap clap clap ad infinitum!!

Paul Birmingham
22 Posted 16/05/2023 at 21:58:48
Thanks Danny for a great positive post, as the day of reckoning for Everton approaches.

Belief, courage and discipline, from the Everton squad and management team, can see Everton, over the line with victory against Wolves.

A few weeks ago the odds were heavily stacked against Everton, but using the battle references, analogy, Everton, have held out like the UN forces, at, the Battle of the Imjin, in the Korean War, which contributed eventually to a peace treaty a coupłe of years later.

Let’s stick together, belief, and conviction, and hopefully with DCL, available, Everton, can achieve victory and with some luck and West Ham, and Arsenal win, approach the last match with good heart, and security.

Everton, hold their destiny, Everton, must secure at least a point, ideally victory v Wolves, and defeat Bournemouth in the last match of this season.


Jack Convery
23 Posted 16/05/2023 at 22:00:14
The Wolves game is no gimme. Their last 4 results at home have all been wins - 1 - 0 v Chelsea, 2 - 0 v Brentford, 2 - 0 v Palace, and 1 - 0 v Villa. Lets hope they have their beach gear on and we get the result we need - another Brighton like performance and 3 vital points. Personally speaking, needing a win over Bournemouth frightens the proverbial out of me. They can play a care free way and we don't have a really good record against them recently. So COYBs
and get it done at Molineux.
Paul Hewitt
24 Posted 16/05/2023 at 22:05:52
I see Wolves played their reserve goalkeeper last time out at Man Utd. It was his Premier League debut, he's spent his career in the lower leagues.

He is likely to start at the weekend. Time for plenty of crosses and shots at goal, I think.

Christopher Timmins
25 Posted 17/05/2023 at 08:54:42

Will you be in with the Wolves supporters on Saturday, I seem to remember that was you lot last season?

I just hope we get it done at the weekend and avoid another week of torture next week.

Ray Roche
26 Posted 17/05/2023 at 09:16:23

The Wolves stand-in keeper had a terrific game.

Danny O’Neill
27 Posted 17/05/2023 at 09:27:43
In the away end Saturday, Chris.

Even though I chatted with the Wolves fans around me last season, who were friendly enough and got used to me, I got a complaint and warning for my future conduct from Wolverhamton Wanderers. As I had signed up to membership, they warned me of who I gave my ticket to.

Possibly from someone who at the time didn't have the balls to stand up to me for cheering us pulling one back. At least I didn't get ejected.

I was sat with United Fans at Old Trafford this season. I have no problem with it. Nor do the majority of football supporters. We can all get on.

In with the travelling blue army at the weekend.

Andrew McLawrence
28 Posted 17/05/2023 at 09:55:06

I'm reminded that many moons ago my youngest decided he was going to support Chelsea (he would have been about 7 or 8 at time).

I took him to the Bridge but could only get tickets in the away section. Chelsea played Everton that day. The rest is history. He's been a hardcore Blue since. He's 25 now.

James Marshall
29 Posted 17/05/2023 at 09:57:43
Danny @8

I sat in with the West Ham fans about 10 years ago down at their place - never, ever again. A terrifying experience, especially when my mate from New Zealand who was with me, thought it would be funny to 'out' me to the locals.

West Ham supporters do not like us one bit, I can assure you.

Danny O’Neill
30 Posted 17/05/2023 at 10:52:31
Andrew @14, I have a picture of me and my cousin outside my Grandad's house on Arkles Lane way back.

I am in my very first Everton kit, he in his Liverpool one.

His parents, my mother's sister and Uncle Archie, both from Speke, moved to Battersea in the late 60s.

He converted to being a Chelsea supporter way before they became successful, which I respect. Although I still have that photo!!

James, I have a bad habit of mixing with away supporters. I suppose it goes with the territory when you travel to home games from London. Last season I kicked on the train at West Ham fans when they started singing "we pay your benefits" as we got close to Lime Street.

I shared a taxi with them and took them to the Saddle Inn, where they mixed well.

I told a few Chelsea supporter to shut up with their bigotry at the Taxi rank in Lime Street. We got a Taxi together and I dropped them off at the Abbey.

I debated with City supporters walking across Stanley Park but we ended up having a drink together.

I have mentioned, one day, my mouth will get me into trouble, but I can't hold back.

Ironically, the only ones I can't talk to are the cousins. Apart from at family gatherings.

Bob Parrington
31 Posted 17/05/2023 at 11:47:06
Go Danny Go! Good positives, mate! Enjoy the game on Saturday! Definitely a NSNO game for us.
Paul Hewitt
33 Posted 17/05/2023 at 11:51:03
Ray, did you have to tell me that?
Dave Abrahams
34 Posted 17/05/2023 at 12:06:47
Paul (33), The ‘keeper, brilliant though he might have been, was still on the losing side.

Listen to Danny, we will ease the worries on Saturday whether with Dominic or not. The score will be bigger if Dominic plays though.

Ray Roche
35 Posted 17/05/2023 at 12:21:09
Sorry Paul. Maybe it was beginners luck 🤷🏼‍♂️
Michael Lynch
36 Posted 17/05/2023 at 13:05:34
We have to win at Wolves. West Ham will play a much weakened team and Leeds will almost certainly win.

If we go into the last weekend of the season in the Bottom 3, I can't see us staying up this time, especially as Leeds will be playing the most fragile team in the league in Spurs.

It's a cup final. No, it's bigger than that – you don't get relegated if you lose a cup final, you just don't pick up a trophy.

Iain Johnston
37 Posted 17/05/2023 at 15:34:55
Leeds are 2nd to bottom of the form table gaining just 2 points form their last 6 games.

... and all of a sudden they'll win their last 2 remaining fixtures?

I doubt that very much.

Steve Brown
38 Posted 17/05/2023 at 15:46:57
Leeds' league results the start of January.


Sparkling form.

James Hughes
39 Posted 17/05/2023 at 16:04:25
We also need to remember that West Ham fans are as fond of Leeds as we are. Plus they also hate Allardyce with a passion.

I had the pleasure of going to Bolweyn when Lardiola was leading them to promotion. He got dog's abuse from the home fans all evening and they played well and won.

Joe McMahon
40 Posted 17/05/2023 at 16:49:06
James @39, I do know a West Ham fan and he didn't have a problem with Big Sam. He got them promoted back into the Premier League in his first season with 14 away wins.

I was informed at the time "at work from a West Ham fan about the tales of West Ham woes" the lowest they finished with him was 12th. He took over from Grant who relegated them, and Billic was appointed after him, as he was seen a fan choice.

Yes, he was then sacked 2 years later after the club was in the relegation places. Moyes had just been appointed (the first time), and he wasn't over the moon about it.

I'll be honest (and I know I'm on my own), but I'd rather have Big Sam than Dyche in the Everton hot seat.

Joshua Steadman
41 Posted 18/05/2023 at 08:28:59
Rob - Ian - love the positivity.
I do worry about our run in compared to Leeds. I just hope West Ham put out a strong team with it being their last home game. The final is not until the bloody 10th June! If they lose the semi, then try and give the supporters something to be optimistic about for next season.
Wolves have a terrific recent home record. Not even conceded in the last four. I don't think for one minute they will be thinking of holidays. Happy with a point, and yes depending on others, but Arsenal and West Ham do us a favor.

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