Everton 1 - 1 Manchester City

15 March 1995

Everton:Unsworth (pen) 80
Manchester C: Gaudino 26
Yellow cards
Everton: Limpar, Barlow
Manchester C: Curle
Sent off:
Manchester C: Phelan
Everton: Southall, Barrett, Watson, Ablett (79. Stuart), Hinchcliffe, Ebbrell, Horne, Parkinson (45. Unsworth), Limpar, Ferguson, Barlow
Manchester C:Coton, Brightwell, Curle, Vonk, Phelan, Gaudino, Simpson, Walsh, Beagrie, Quinn, Rosler (67. Foster)
Subs not used: Kearton (Everton), Summerbee, Dibble (Man C)
Referee: G Willard (Worthing)
Attendance: 28,485


On bitterly cold night with icy showers, a game leaving much to ponder. City were lucky to catch Everton in horrible form, and nearly snatched all 3.

The game started with Everton rampant. They grabbed possession and mounted dangerous attacks from the start. A Barlow fine flick from a Limpar pass was on target & hit perfectly, but Coton pulled off a save equally stunning to Southall's at Forest. Other Barlow efforts was blocked out by desperate defenders & the side net, so with only 5 mins gone and Hinchcliffe surprisingly back in the lineup, I settled down to watch a 5-0 win..

City began to find their feet more after that. Parki did hit a long clear firm drive, but it was an easy save. An Hinchy corner (welcome back!) was met by DF but was too high to aim downwards.

After that things got dire very quickly. City seemed to be cynically launching the ball into the sky in a parody of the way some sarky journalists and RS have been accusing us of playing - but worse, Everton started playing that way too. Almost every pass was airball, resulting in endless losses of possession, offsides and balls out of play. Add to this that City seemed to have ideas coming forwards, kept finding unmarked men and having goal attempts - luckily all poor.

Their goal, a 45 degree angle drive from outside the box was well stuck and perfectly placed to beat Southall & go inside the far post. The run of play made this not surprising, but was very poor justice after Everton's chances.

The remaining 20 mins of the first half were awful. Everton never looked like scoring, and the football was a disgrace to the royal blue. The crowd changed from quiet to frustrated, some even got abusive, looking for any scapegoat for what was an all round poor performance. Frustration peaked when Horne (!) found himself clear through, dribbled into the penalty area persued from behind by two defenders, went down but referee Willard (placed in the centre circle) waved it away. [There's no way I could tell from my seat if there was a push or foul, but neither could the ref, and the linesman didn't volunteer an opinion. BH was through, central & had the ball at his feet. Why dive?].

JR took off Parki for Unsworth in the second half. With Horne & Ebbrell in midfield and the ball in the air, there was little point in keeping three. Limpar was moved to the right, & Rhino put into his original left midfield position.

The reshuffle was inventive, but had almost no effect. The football was still terrible, though the ball spent a bit less time in the air. City continued to waste time and hang on for the win. The ineffectiveness of Everton was highlighted sharply when they failed to make any more impression on 10 men than they did on 11. Ref Willard, who had made a lot of very poor decisions against both teams, found an innocuous reason to book Phelan a second time - even Limpar protested his innocence.

The chances did come, but only slowly, and even when they were mistake free, they were also luck free and City defenders accepted endless deflections and rebounds as well as plenty of poor passes. Curle kept DF so well in harness by pushing him gently in the back that Dunc even resorted to moving to decoy and flick-on duty. This nearly worked when the ball cleared everyone to leave Hinchcliffe(!) a far post DF-type heading opportunity, but Andy seemed to aim for the top corner instead of powering downwards, and missed by agonising inches.

Joe made a last desperate throw of the dice, bringing off Ablett for Stuart, and leaving Horne to cover any holes at the back. This was not that much of a gamble since City had taken off Rosler & Quinn was not any significant threat except when Watson fouled him.

A minute later, Limpar, back on the left (because of Stuart) was scuttling into the box and Vonk handed Everton a point by felling him though he was only a yard from the side of the area and running towards the bye-line. No, our mini-Jurgen didn't dive, it was a real genuine 100% foul. No City players protested.

With our luck we almost expected Dave Unsworth to miss, but as the ball was teed up, Curle made a huge point of letting Coton and Unsworth know that he knew it was going to Coton's right by pointing to the church. Rhino stepped up, Coton prepared to dive right, but DU hit the ball to Coton's left with a result that the keeper was left standing on two feet as a relatively simple save by-passed him to his left. Curle never looked back at Coton as he trudged to the kick-off.

Ten minutes left - could Everton follow through and take all three? Well they tried hard, but the bad luck was still frustrating them. Another Barlow flick was saved by Coton, Duncan got clean through but scooped a shot just high & wide from a wideish position. A collector's item diagonal bicycle kick by Ebbrell(!!) flew too high also.

Meanwhile City deigned to mount an attack or two, and were gifted an unneccesary late corner when a long low shot going a foot wide was spectaculary 'saved' for a corner by Neville.

Everton's defenses held out, but so did City's luck and both teams trudged off to have another long hard look at the league tables. The crowd booed half-heartedly. Disappointment more than anything at missing a chance to stomp all over a vastly inferior team... but we've heard that story before.. usually away!

Team Performance 5 As a unit this performance was just awful. Passing (where attempted) was poor, tackling was minimal, and the 'will to win' which has been so encouraging since JR took over was AWOL.

Ref: G Willard. Upset both teams with erratic cards and mistakes (as if they didn't have enough problems).

Yet again people castigate Barlow, despite the fact that he put in most of Everton's best efforts at goal, actually forcing Coton to at least 3 saves and being unlucky with the flashing near post header that went into the side netting..Ferguson hwoever, headed at least two excellent chances over and blasted over from 8 yards, yet people don't have a go at him...Ebbrell proved once again that he is a liability in the penalty area..

Limpar got me really annoyed as he started off as though he was going to have a field day, as he could beat his back easily, but he got it into his head that he was going to be the star of the match and kept over-doing things..I think in the end he only put in one decent cross, AND got stupidly booked which I believe puts Him out of the BlackBurn game..

Everton looked a LOT better when Unsy came on as left-back and Hinchliffe was moved forward..Royle reckoned that he'd dropped UNsy because with his 2 match suspension coming up he wanted to establish his defense...Can't see the logic in this myself as it just makes us more likely to pick up an injury in that department which we wouldn't be able to cover...

Last night's performance was the most depressing for a long time - too many haven't got the confidence or ability to put their foot on the ball and try and play football - I couldn't believe that Everton spent 30 minutes playing against a very knackered looking 10 men and did nothing but knock the ball up to Ferguson's head.

Ferguson is going to be 'burnt-out' pretty quickly if Everton do nothing but hoof long balls toward him. He was supposidly well marked by Vonk last night but still won enough headers to cause problems - but Barlow's positional sense and confidence were poor. The amount of times he either ran the wrong way or when he received the ball just wanted to get rid of it as soon as possible, meant that all Ferguson's effort was wasted.

Royle was on the radio after the game saying their won't be any imminent signings - so what happens on Saturday, Barlow and Stuart up front chasing long balls for 90 minutes - great )-:. He also moaned about the 'Barry Horne' penalty incident in the first half - I was right behind the goal and thought the City player made a fair tackle.

It's difficult to say too many good things about last night's performance, Barrett's now lost his confidence and looks no better or worse than Matt Jackson, Limpar is an irritating little **** - he has the ability, but his brain just doesn't seem to work and Barlow - not much to add to the previous mails, other than I don't think he'll ever make a premier league player. I always thought his first name was Stuart, not F**k off..

Dunno what the full run-in's is, but I heard something last night saying the Ipswich and Chelsea games have already been rearranged and Everton face the final five games of the season in just fourteen days.

Limpar got booked last night and now faces a suspension.

It was a wet and windy night at goodison, having had the crapest seat ever at the Newcastle match in the main stand I decided to return to my old haunt the top balcony - at least there I could see the match rather than merely experiance it.

Regretably there wasn't that mutch encouraging to see. We started promisingly enough with Barlow forcing a good save in the first two minutes, and a good spell of pressure for the first ten. However, after the initial stampede City got right back in and our vulnerability started to show. Citys goal was a class strike. We allowed Gaudino way to mutch space to pick up a cross, nobody challenged him, and he volleyed home from the edge of the Box, Nev had no chance. Our best chance of the half fell to Limpar. He broke away from the marker and was clear with only Coton to beat, sadly he chose to dive rather than shoot, the referee was having none of it. Imediately after that Limpar drove a fierce shot across the face of the goal, inches wide.

THe second half gave us some good fortune. Terry Phelen was shown the red-card for a second bookable offence. I have to say that I feel he was unlucky, as his first half booking was given to the wrong man. THat was for timewasting on a free-kick he was about to take when his captain told him to swap, Phelan took the rap though - not the captain. The spare man didn't really show though and both sides had chances with nev making a couple of fine saves.

We ended much as we'd started with a period of pressure. Limpar broke into the box, a defender put in a hard challenge and this time Limpar made a much better job of the dive. David Unsworth sent the goalie the wrong way from the spot.

For a moment it looked like we may snatch a winner though chances went begging for both Duncan and Barlow.

Overall it was a poor team performance. The root one stuff is looking tired. We hoof the ball up to dunc, dunc flicks it on, then there defender picks up the lose ball. It isn't getting us anywhere. Barlow is a good player and plays well for the reserves. However, last night he was a liablilty on the park. True the lad has pace, and reasonable positional play, however he does not have the hight or physical pressence to compliment Dunc in the styal of football we are now playing. He looked extremely unconfident with his role.

Player by player

The second comments have a mark, there were two marks available, so I chose the other ones as the "official" and these are the other ones.


"Only kept busy by backpasses & long hoofs."

"8 - nowt he could have done about the goal."


"Another enigmatic performance. Luckily Beagrie was worse."

"6 - Some good covering defending, and showed some good understanding with Limpar, put in some terrible balls!"


"City found too much space in his patch first half."

"6 - looked uncomfortable a few times, made the worst shot of the season, made some telling challenges though."


"Did not deal well with Quinn."

"8 - Did the buisness."


"Welcome return and crosses to match."

"7 - not up to his usual form, tripped over the ball more than once, was also dispossesed a few times."


"Not much action due to long-ball first half."

"5 - only played first half. Nothing particularly stood out."


"Good work defending and going forward, but didn't win many."

"9 - Who needs Catana when you've got Barry Horne? Played some very positive football, made some good challenges and set up some good moves."


"One of JE's better games - pity he can't shoot. SURELY this skill can be >taught

"4 - some good one touch passing in midfield, but this does not make up for the general lack of confidence and control. Liability."


"Best threat first half (7); but sulked, moaned & was greedy when moved to the right (5)."

"6 - At his most frustrating! Flashes of brilliance combined with selfishness and errors. Nice dive, some good runs."


"Adapted well to being marked out by playing a more creative and supporting role to the style City liked least - fast runs by Limpar & Barlow."

"6 - Not his best game, missed two good chances, looked tired with forever flicking on - we need a new formula!"


"What does Bartman have to do to get more luck? His work is excellent but all the shots he gets on target get saved. In danger of becoming a scapegoat a' la RS with Ablett."

"5 - good pace, though clearly our styal of play does not suit him. Looked uncomfortable with his role."


"Good job using his pace down the wing and getting crosses over, but didn't find the best targets with them."

"8 - Always good to see Rhino being allowed past the Half way line. Cooly taken penalty."


"Another anonymous contribution from last year's ideas man."

"6 - came on towards end. Didn't make any errors but then didn't do anything to particularly impress. True our football went up a gear, though this was probably due to the extra man as much as Stuarts arrival"


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