Everton Logo Everton 6 - 0 West Ham United
Half-time: 3 - 0
West Ham United Logo
FA Carling Premiership 1998-99 – Game 37
Saturday 8 May 1999
Goodison Park, Merseyside
Att: 40,049
« Chelsea (a) Ref: Alan Wilkie Southampton (a) »
1998-99 Fixtures & Results League Position: 14th Premiership Results & Table
EVERTON: Campbell (14', 52', 77') Ball (pen:25') Hutchison (38'), Jeffers (87')
West Ham United:
   LINEUPS  Subs Not Used 
EVERTON: Myhre, Weir, Watson, Short, Unsworth, Ball, Hutchison, Dacourt, Gemmill, Campbell, Jeffers.
Unavailable: Materazzi (suspended); Bilic, Branch, Collins, Cleland, Farley, McDermott, Williamson, Parkinson (injured).
Simonsen, Barmby, Bakayoko, Ward, Degn.
West Ham United: West Ham: Hislop, Sinclair, Ferdinand, Ruddock, Foe, Minto, Lampard, Berkovic, Lomas, Di Canio, Wright (60' Keller). Forrest, Coyne, Mean, Alexander.
   Yellow Cards  Red Cards
West Ham United: Ferdinand (18'), Wright (26'), Foe (67'), Sinclair (70').

Steve Bickerton Royal Blue Show
Guy McEvoy In, Out, Shake it all about
Richard Marland Its Party Time!
ELECTRONIC TELEGRAPH Campbell treble ensures Everton's survival
by Derick Allsop
THE SUNDAY TIMES Everton joy as Campbell serves up treble treat
by Louise Taylor
Trickery of Campbell
by Richard Slater
THE INDEPENDENT Hat-trick hero still waiting on Everton
by Paul Walker
THE TIMES Campbell's heart at Everton
by Stephen Wood
THE EVERTONIAN Link to the latest Match Report

THE GUARDIAN Link to Football Unlimited Match Report
THE OBSERVER Link to Football Unlimited Match Report
SOCCERNET Link to SoccerNet Match Report
CARLINGNET Link to CarlingNet Match Report

 Royal Blue Show
Steve Bickerton
A depressing week, overall, starting with the defeat at the hands of Chelsea and ending with the twin spears of a sideswipe at the club by Olivier Dacourt and the revelations that HSBC had pulled its backing from Bill Kenwright, in his continuing efforts to buy out Peter Johnson. What else could go wrong this week? Oh yes, we've reached our overdraft limit, with our former Chairman having given guarantees over a whopping £1.5M and the bank graciously obliging with a further £13.5M.

The cupboard is bare! The family silver is about to go up for auction and there are creditors clamoring for payment. It couldn't get any worse could it? Well, it could. A series of calamitous results, like Southampton securing their second away win of the season against Wimbledon and then turning us over next week and then Blackburn winning against the already doomed Forest, doing likewise, albeit surprisingly, against Manchester United and then winning again on the final day of the season. That might be enough to see us down with Charlton and Forest, if Coventry and Wednesday also secured one point each from their remaining two fixtures and we lost today.

A wholly improbable set of results, but this is football, the beautiful game and anything could happen.

Like Southampton winning away at Wimbledon 2-0.

Somehow, though, the sell-out crowd at Goodison Park didn't seem to be in the mood for despondency today. After all, there were all of those awards, before the game.

Don Hutchison – Radio City & Dirty Sports Player of the season – to go with his Liverpool Echo and South African Supporters' awards. Kevin Campbell – Carling Player of the Month for April.  The Everton Girls' U-12, U-14 & U-16 teams who all won their Lancashire FA Cups for their age groups, and who are all also about to win their leagues.

No wonder we kicked off 10 minutes late.

First Half

It was a tame start, plenty of tidy passing from both sides, but not a lot of endeavour. Considering that there was a pre-match announcement that the players would be giving a salute to the crowd after the game (would that be a two fingered one from Ollie?) there seemed to be little passion being shown by any of them. The side, which consisted of Myhre: Ball, Unsworth, Watson, Short, Weir: Hutchison, Dacourt, Gemmill: Jeffers, Campbell (bench: Simonsen: Degn, Barmby: Bakayoko, Cadamarteri), seemed happy to be out for a stroll in the park. And so it proved to be, in the end.

There was plenty to see that pleased the eye after an early corner, which resulted in a parried Unsworth header being bundled across the West Ham goal line by Campbell. 1-0 and a goal from a set piece! West Ham players argued amongst themselves.

I have to admit at this point, to being a little confused at quite what was going on in front of me. Seeing ten men in Royal Blue shirts (I like the new kit, by the way), playing with surety and confidence, was a little bewildering. Such was my state of delirium that I'm at a loss to give much of a description of just what went on. It was a blue tidal wave, battering at a submissive West Ham defence.

Ball's goal says much about the way the level of confidence has grown of late. A long pass out to the right was a little astray, but Jeffers, who doesn't seem to know what a lost cause is, chased it down and took the ball towards the corner. He played it inside and forward to Gemmill, supporting him, who struggled to reach it, but just managed to keep the ball in play. He pressed on, across the box, moving to find a better angle to shoot, but one didn't present itself. A clatter of feet and Gemmill was down. Penalty!

Mr Wilkie confirmed the decision by pointing to the spot. Michael Ball grabbed the ball before anyone else could reach it, confident in his own ability. He placed it calmly on the spot and waited for the furore, which always accompanies these decisions, to die down. Ian Wright raced into the area and kicked the ball off the spot and made his way towards Shaka Hislop, the West Ham keeper. A quick discussion between the two and then he returned to take his place outside the box. His ploy, undoubtedly, was to unsettle the young blue. It didn't work. Ball replaced the ball and hit the penalty hard left and high into the net. No chance for the keeper. 2-0. We're safe now!

After that it was a procession as we went forward time after time. West Ham, to give them some credit, did get forward on the odd occasion only for Lampard and Ruddock in particular to waste half-decent chances, but in the main our defence was outstanding. What a difference Watson makes and will he make it through another season? Jeffers had a couple of long-range efforts as did Dacourt. But it was Hutchison who eventually found the net for the third time as he sweetly drove home from the edge of the box. 3-0 and coasting. What a delight it was to cheer them off at half-time.

Second Half

The second half started a little differently to the first. West Ham pressed forward. Doubtless Harry Rednapp was concerned that they didn't concede five for the second game in succession. He needn't have worried. They didn't. Five minutes or so their domination lasted. Then they were out on their feet.

Crisp, flowing football, a midfield moving around like a finely tuned machine, Gemmill, Hutchison and Dacourt all outstanding. The defence, as I've said, was terrific, Ball and Unsworth looking more comfortable, both positionally and on the ball than at any other time this season. Watson , a rock, Short and Weir two thoroughbreds on the right [maybe I exaggerate a little here ;) ]. Up front Jeffers continually found space and Campbell continued to score for fun. Two classic centre-forward goals. 5-0 and its carnival time. The only one who didn't have his best game of the season was Myhre. Everyone else made sure he didn't get the chance.

The one I felt sorry for at this stage was Franny. He'd made space, found space, held the ball up, delivered it short and long. He'd shot wide on a number of occasions. At 5-0 you'd have expected him to have been on the score sheet. At 6-0 he was. A corner (again) flicked on teasingly by Weir at the front post (much as he did in the game at Blackburn) and Franny was there to steer it home. Harry could relax now, they hadn't conceded five again, it was six this time.

The final goal brought a mini pitch invasion as a lone celebrant ducked and dived away from stewards and players alike finally regaining the terrace in the family enclosure. As he left the field of play a second incursion was made, but this was more speedily dealt with. After the restart we could have had more. Jeffers nearly had both Campbell and Hutchison in for further goals and Dacourt and Weir could have added their names to the scoresheet. The West Ham fans jigged and shouted celebrating results elsewhere in the Premiership, most notably Charlton's win at Villa, but we didn't care. We were in heaven.

The final whistle came and the crowd rose to celebrate the result, the performance and the knowledge that no matter what happens at Southampton next week, we start off next season in the Premier League.

Man of the Match: With so many to choose from, where do I begin? Campbell was lethal with his finishing, Jeffers ran tirelessly providing opportunities for many. Each of the midfield played well and so did those in defence. The only one who doesn't figure is Myhre and he can hardly be blamed for that – though maybe I should include him for his cheerleading efforts as we sang "easy- easy" when the third goal went in! I've made my decision though and maybe its not the obvious choice: I'm going to give it to Scot Gemmill who seems to have added an extra dimension to the midfield since his arrival.

Team Performance: Quite simply, the best I've seen (and will see, as I won't be at Southampton) this season. The return of the football accompanied the return of Royal Blue shirts. A coincidence? Maybe.

 In, Out, Shake it all about
Guy McEvoy
Late. Late. Late. I drove like a maniac down the M6, though it got pretty weird on the way as part of the motorway was flooded; a clear run down the M58, foot to floor, then stagnant down the A59. Parked the car at three o'clock, got to the ground at 10 past. Not to worry, kick off delayed for 10 minutes (for no apparent reason) and so I took my seat in time to see play start. It all worked out OK in the end. With bells on.

A quick glance at the team showed it was pretty much as I'd have expected, Dacourt and Gemmill back in the squad, Barmby on the bench. The thing that really caught the eye though was the new kit. Very nice too. Proper Everton colour, no daft stripes or anything.

First Half

The first ten minutes or so gave no indication at all of what was to come. Initially we held the ball up in midfield and looked reluctant to force the play. The Hammers made quite a bit of noise: 'Arsenal Reject' was quickly hurled at Campbell. The Park End bided its time before it could respond with the same chant at Ian Wright. Good stuff.

As the time passed we got more and more of a grip. We played a short corner and whipped the ball into the box, David Unsworth of all people was there to crack an excellent volley which Hislop tuned away superbly. The loose ball bobbled towards the goal line, their defenders flapped, Kevin Campbell did not. 1-0. This one will not be an entry in goal of the month, though that had no bearing on our celebrations.

We pressed on with our advantage and had another few efforts from distance, Jeffers seemed particularly keen in this department.

The second wasn't long in coming. Gemmill did some wonderful work along the goal line, beating a man, keeping the ball in play, skipping another. He seemed to take forever to shoot though and, just as it seemed he'd taken the ball a few yards too far, someone helpfully hacked at his heels and we had a penalty. Full credit to Michael Ball. He marched up immediately, placed the ball, ignored the sledging from Ian Wright and whacked it the top corner. Classic penalty.

By this point, it was clear the West Ham were troubled. Off the ball, their men started to bicker and point at each other. In midfield there was but total abject surrender. We had all the time in the world on the ball, and started to make the most of it, passing round in triangles for fun.

The third fell to Hutchison who smashed high into the net. With this one safely tucked away all my remaining nervousness vanished, we were good value for our three-goal cushion at the break.

Second Half

There was never any chance of a miracle come-back, in the second half West Ham were every bit as woeful as they'd been in the first. The only difference was that by this point their bickering had got even worse. There are fewer funnier sights in football than Paulo Di Canio in his specially made tight shorts, and socks with the extra stripe, strolling round with a strop on. What a tosser!

Cambell is a man in form. Goals four and five were both top drawer striker stuff. Both came from a good teamwork build-up which nevertheless still saw Cambell having a hard task ahead. Both the finishes were confident and clinical and great fun to watch. "1-2, 1-2-3, 1-2-3-4, FIVE NIL!"

By now Goodison was, of course, in a total party mood. This was despite a brief scare when they were awarded a penalty, but the entire Park End in a co-ordinated pointing, directed the referees attention to his assistant who had raised his flag for an offside prior to the infringement. Panic over.

We'd cheer each pass in the long periods of keep ball, both the ends kept a steady flow of songs coming, and there was a truly moving moment when the Street End started a rendition of "Stand Up if you Love the Blues". It swept all four sides of the ground and I doubt there was an Evertonian there not on their feet with arms in the air singing with gusto. The Park End also asked Tommy the score after each goal, and he milked the crowd with his response.

One thing that must be mentioned though is the West Ham fans. They were superb, at least in an 'always look on the bright side' sort of way. Now, I've sat through a few Everton assassinations at away games in my times and a brave face isn't always that easy. This lot were mental. They were determined to have a good day out regardless. They actually silenced all Evertonians for a good few minutes whilst we tried to suss out what on earth they were doing. For no apparent reason they all (and I mean ALL, this wasn't just a few of them, this was the whole damn lot) suddenly went crazy like they'd just scored at Wembley or something, a few moments later the same, and again a few moments after that. It was bizarre to watch. Finally we latched that they were celebrating a fantasy game where they were staging their come-back. Each 'celebration' was launched as they pulled another fantasy goal back. By the time they 'scored' their sixth, the Park End was able to suggest that they only sing when they're winning. They then, inexplicably, launched into several chorus's of 'The Ockey Cokey'. With actions. These guys are tapped.

The one thing that was still missing from the afternoon was a goal from Jeffers. His industry deserved one but it just wasn't happening for him. As the game went on and on you could see he was getting more and more frustrated. At least he responds by trying harder when things seem against him instead of hiding which some of our players have been guilty of in the recent past. The persistence was rewarded. Another well worked corner, this one flicked on and Franny rose to nod it in. Jubilation.

At this point the mood was temporarily soured when one dickhead teenager decided to mount a one-man pitch invasion. The stewards made no attempt to apprehend him, a couple of players made only half-hearted efforts but thought better of it when he looked like getting physical. Despite the boos from the crowd he seemed to have no intention of getting off the pitch. Eventually he made a run for it and smashed into the family enclosure. His lunacy, somehow inspired a copy-cat effort from an even bigger dickhead though the Stewards got to grips with this one a lot quicker.

That though was just a minor irritating distraction. The game got back under way and for the dying minutes it was party mood again. The final whistle went, the players did a lap of honour, Kev milked it to the hilt and fairplay to him. I'll swear that when he passed the Top Balcony he pointed right at me twice and deliberately before punching the air, but then everyone on my row reckons it was them.

For the second home game in a row I went home with an inner glow. In the two home games I've been to since I got home from Australia I've seen ten goals. This has seriously helped stop the manic depression of being back in this rain-soaked place from setting in.

You get a buzz like that and you just don't want the day to end. Got back to Lancaster, went out with an old mate and got monster, stinking, blind, memory-loss drunk. Hallelujah.


  • Tommy 7 - Had nothing whatsoever do except celebrate our goals and have fun with the crowd.
  • Weir 7 - Only the second time I've seen him. Seems solid enough. Like it.
  • Short 7 - Reminded me of the Craig Short we enjoyed a couple of season ago, you could see his confidence coming back, even to the point were he was successfully running with the ball at the opposition. It's a good long while since I last saw that. Good to see.
  • Ball 7 - Composed, mature. Still can't believe everything folk were saying about him while I was away.
  • Unsworth 7 - I'm not his biggest fan, but performance like this will win me back over. (When the Park End chanted 'Fat Arse' what's the score – presumably to Ruddock, it was quite funny to see Unsworth look round. Getting paranoid are you Dave? Have a salad)
  • Watson 7 - Mr Solid.
  • Dacourt 7 - Didn't look to be firing on all cylinders and his timing on some tackles was often well late. Having said that, he gave us plenty of glimpses of why the board should at least make an effort to get him to stay.
  • Hutchison 8 - Another classy performance full of heart from Don. Delighted to see his goal.
  • Gemmill 8 - Very good. It is impossible to overstate just how completely dominant our midfield was throughout this game. They were excellent. And on the day I'd say that Gemmill was the pick of the three.
  • Jeffers 7 - Loads of application, not too much luck. Didn't let his obvious frustration get the better of him by lowering his head instead he stuck to his task and it paid off.
  • Cambell 9 - On form. In good confidence. Deadly.

 Its Party Time!
Richard Marland
Well who would have foreseen this? Who would have thought earlier in the season, during our goal famine when we were wondering just when we were going to score at the Gwladys St End, that come the end of the season we would be scoring goals for fun. It just looks so easy this goal scoring lark, it almost seemed that every time we crossed the half way line today there was a good chance that we might score. In the end we scored 6, and in all honesty it could have been more.

Walter didn't produce any shocks with his team selection. The "rested" Dacourt and Watson returned, and Gemmill returned from suspension at the expense of the desperately unfortunate Barmby. The full line up was Myrhe in goal, the habitual back five of Weir, Short, Watson, Unsworth and Ball. The midfield trio of Dacourt, Hutchison and Gemmill, with our in-form strike pairing of Campbell and Jeffers. The bench comprised Simonsen, Ward, Barmby, Bakayoko and Degn.

First Half

We started off in a fairly lack-lustre manner. This has been fairly typical of the season, I'm not sure whether it is the players fault or some sort of instructions from the management. It's almost as if they're showing a bit of caution, feeling their way into the game; alright for the Man Utd's of this world, not so sure about us.

It took us a little while to get going, but when we did we really started motoring. After about 15 minutes a corner came in, Shaka Hislop produced a quite miraculous save from Unsworth's header, there was then another goal-bound attempt deflected away from goal, before finally someone buried it. At first I couldn't see who it had been, I should have guessed the scorer: none other than our messiah Kevin Campbell.

The second followed shortly after as we took complete control of the game. A good move down the right, Gemmill did really well to get by someone on the goalline, he came into the box but seemed to have missed his opportunity by dallying on the ball too long. He seemed unsure of what to do next when a West Ham defender made his mind up for him by whipping his legs from under him. The referee pointed to the spot, West Ham weren't too happy, but then they wouldn't be would they. Personally I wasn't too sure but then I was too far away to really tell. Ball took the kick and found the roof of the net with some aplomb, a high-class penalty.

The crowd was in party mode. West Ham were there for the taking, we were stroking the ball around the pitch. With fresh memories of the Sheffield Wednesday capitulation I wanted to see us score more goals, to put it out of sight. Fortunately the team seemed to be thinking the same way and continued to press forward. The third goal came as no great surprise, some more good approach play saw the ball fall to Don Hutchison in the area, our new Player of the Season duly did the honours and lashed the ball, right footed, high into the net.

Towards the end of the first half we had the luxury of playing some keep-ball, stringing together passes as West Ham chased shadows. West Ham were already looking like a well beaten side, their performance had been woeful. From our point of view it was great to watch. To see them picking up bookings (I don't think we got any), to see Ian Wright having further problems with his anger management, and to see Di Canio behaving like the archetypal whinging, pouting Italian (just like Marco at his worst in fact).

Half time was reached and for only the second time the season we could relax and think "well we should be OK now". It was a novelty to be able to listen to the half time scores and not to have to do the mental arithmetic about what it all meant. We were winning, we were safe – end of story.

Second Half

The second half carried on where the first ended. We were in total control. The defence was largely untroubled, the midfield were dominant and we continued to press forward to look for further goals. The fourth wasn't too long in coming. Weir dinked a nice ball through, Campbell turned his man nicely to run onto it and chip the onrushing 'keeper. A brilliantly taken goal, the touch of a man in form and playing with confidence.

Still we continued to press forward. There was no great sense of urgency about the play but we continued to do a professional job. We kept it tight at the back and worked hard in the midfield areas. Our only scare came when we nearly conceded a penalty, Di Canio went down in the area under pressure from Craig Short, to me it looked very innocuous and a very harsh penalty. However, justice was done when it was pointed out that the linesman was already signalling for off-side. It wasn't to be West Ham's day, and with their supine display it didn't deserve to be.

The only questions left now where could Campbell complete his hat-trick and could Jeffers get the goal he was seeking with increasing desperation? The answer to both was yes. First Campbell was released into the box by an astute Don Hutchison pass (yet another assist for Don Hutchison). It was almost a mirror image of his second goal, that had been into the inside right channel, this was into the inside left channel. He didn't muck about, first touch in off the left hand post. Another quality finish.

That only left Jeffers. His eagerness to get on the score sheet was palpable and bordered on the desperate. He'd already taken a number of decent shots where perhaps there had been better options. But this lad is a goal scorer with a goal scorers instincts, and he got what he was looking for in the dying minutes. A corner from the left, a flick on at the near post (Weir?), and there was Franny in the centre of the goal to bundle it over the line. A good poachers goal, Franny was happy and so were we.

Whilst all this had been going on, the West Ham fans had been busy entertaining us. Having clearly given up on their team providing them any cause for celebration, they decided to take it upon themselves to celebrate regardless. At first we wondered what the hell they were up to, jumping around like crazy as if they'd just scored. Things died down and then they went off again. It took a while for the penny to drop but then realisation dawned – they were celebrating virtual goals. Soon they had pulled it back to 5-5, and then they took the "lead" 6-5. This prompted a chorus from the Park End of "You only sing when you're winning". Franny then saved our bacon with a last minute "equaliser". All good stuff and credit to them to take their second big loss in a week with such good humour.

Full time came, for once there was no full-scale pitch invasion (just the usual no-brain kids) and the players were able to parade round the pitch and applaud the fans. Ultimately we got to where we needed to be, but my god what a journey to get there.

Player Ratings

  • Myrhe 7  Did he have a save to make? Can't recall one. Did everything that was asked of him, including keeping the Park End up to date with the score.
  • Weir 7  I still think he's doing all right. Good at making himself available and he is a decent passer (witness his pass for Campbell's second).
  • Ball 7  Much better from Bally. His penalty was particularly impressive. At that stage of the game it was still very important; to score as conclusively as he did was excellent.
  • Short 6  Usual solid, uncomplicated stuff.
  • Watson 8  Barely put a foot (broken or otherwise) wrong. Commanding performance.
  • Unsworth 7  Another good performance from Unsie.
  • Dacourt 7  Not at his best but still a good hard working performance.
  • Hutchison 7  Continues his excellent season. A deserved goal, and an excellent assist for Campbell's hat trick.
  • Gemmill 8  Thoroughly justified his inclusion at the expense of Barmby. He's a good tidy little player, and his influence on our current run of form shouldn't be under-estimated.
  • Campbell 8  A performance to cap off a remarkable burst of goal-scoring form. This was another performance which went beyond just his goal contribution. The way in which he took his second two goals just shows the rich vein of form and confidence he is in.
  • Jeffers 7  Not as sparkling as he had been against Charlton but his qualities still shone through.

Team 7 We have to concede just how awful West Ham were, but we still had to go out there and convert that into domination, something we have failed to do in the past. Like all our recent victories this was a competent, professional display, we played some nice stuff at times, but in all honesty we didn't really hit any highs, we were just competent, and in this division that's often enough.

Man of the match - Kevin Campbell, who else?

 Campbell treble ensures Everton's survival
Derick Allsop, Electronic Telegraph
THIS YEAR Thanksgiving arrived a week early at Goodison Park and the primal chant proclaimed the natives' abiding devotion to Everton. The prospect of a strife-free final day of the season motivated Walter Smith's team to seek safety yesterday, and West Ham proved accommodating opposition.

Requiring a point to banish any lingering fears of relegation, Everton effectively accomplished their mission with three goals in 37 minutes and went on to register their biggest win of another nerve-shredding campaign.

Kevin Campbell collected his player of the month award for scoring three goals in three crucial wins during April – and then celebrated with a hat-trick to confirm the club's Premiership status.

He was, as usual, well served by a midfield who eclipsed their opposite numbers from first minute to last. Don Hutchison provided the vision and subtlety, Olivier Dacourt the combativeness and Scot Gemmill the selfless energy.

West Ham mustered scant resistance from any quarter. They were, apparently, already demob happy and Everton were not about to pass up the opportunity to give them a drubbing.

Ian Wright, who has trashed Everton defences in the past the way he set about the referee's dressing-room last week, summoned sufficient aggression to earn a booking and kick a drink bottle down the touchline. But he showed no sign of inflicting damage on Everton's cause and his personal torment was curtailed when Harry Redknapp withdrew him on the hour.

Almost any of his colleagues could have followed him to the dressing-room. West Ham's individual and collective offering was abject, the more so as it came the day after their next generation took a hold on the FA Youth Cup final with a hugely impressive performance at Coventry.

Everton are already focussed on next season but their chairman, Sir Philip Carter, warned that no-one should be deluded into thinking this was the dawn of a new era. A £6 million fee for Dacourt would ease rather than solve their problems. They cannot even guarantee finding the money to turn Campbell's loan into a permanent signing.

Smith said: "We would obviously like to keep Campbell but people know about our financial situation. He's made a significant contribution. It will be nice not to be involved in a scramble at Southampton next week."

That incentive propelled Everton to an opening goal after 14 minutes. David Unsworth was twice denied but Campbell bundled the loose ball over the line. Michael Ball converted a penalty 10 minutes later and Hutchison volleyed in the third from close range.

Campbell chipped a delightful fourth over Hislop after 52 minutes and completed his hat-trick following an exquisite move engineered by Gemmill and Hutchison in the 77th minute. Francis Jeffers headed the sixth, three minutes from the end.

Report © The Electronic Telegraph

 Everton joy as Campbell serves up treble treat
by Louise Taylor, The Sunday Times
DUNCAN who? Everton fans may have been heartbroken by Duncan Ferguson's mid-season defection to Newcastle United, but they worship a new idol now. His name is Kevin Campbell, and yesterday he cemented an already mutually adoring relationship by scoring a hat-trick, boosting his personal tally to nine goals in the past five matches.

Afterwards Campbell led an exultant Everton lap of honour so wildly applauded that an uninitiated outsider stumbling into Goodison Park would surely have surmised that Walter Smith's team had won the title rather than narrowly escaped relegation.

They also deserve to have Campbell still on their side come August, but the only snag is that their saviour is merely on loan from Trabzonspor of Turkey, whose president dubbed him a "discoloured cannibal". Everton are about £20M in debt and desperately in need of a sugar daddy. If they cannot attract one quickly, they will be unlikely to afford the £3.5M or so required to sign Campbell permanently. Otherwise, rumour has it, he could be Sunderland bound.

Everton took the lead from a 14th-minute corner, the ball falling to David Unsworth, a former Hammer, whose volley prompted an excellent save from Shaka Hislop. West Ham United's goalkeeper managed only to parry the effort, however, offering Unsworth a second, headed, attempt on the rebound. Once again Hislop saved, but the ball ricocheted loose, falling to that poacher supreme, Campbell, who poked it across the line from close range.

What a transformation he has effected in his seven matches since arrival from Turkey – Everton must surely beg, steal or borrow the funds required to keep him. Afterwards, a wistful Smith said: "Obviously we want to keep Kevin, but . . ."

At least Michael Ball, Everton's bright, young left-back, has refuted talk that he is on the brink of joining Manchester United. It was Ball who put Everton two up with a penalty blasted high into the roof of Hislop's net after Steve Lomas's push on Scot Gemmill.

Ian Wright has scored 15 goals in 17 appearances against Everton, but yesterday he found his duel with Unsworth far less pleasant than those televised talk-show jousts with the model Caprice. Wright got so little change out of Unsworth that he asked Paolo Di Canio to swap positions, but "leather trousers" fared no better against Craig Short, merely incurring a booking for fouling him.

Coming on top of his sending-off and trashing of the referee's dressing room during last week's Battle of Upton Park with Leeds United, it made Wright look 35 going on 15, an impression reinforced when he petulantly kicked at a drinks bottle at the edge of the pitch. All the constructive stuff came from Everton, who were three up before the interval. Don Hutchison sent Campbell racing forward with a hallmark defence-splitting pass, and Everton's leading scorer unselfishly played in young Francis Jeffers, who misconnected as he shaped to shoot. No matter, Hutchison – a fine reader of the game – steamed in to lash the ball beyond a helpless Hislop.

In an effort to regroup, West Ham moved Marc-Vivien Foe into their defence for the second half, his midfield place going to Lomas, who had begun in the back three.

It made scant difference as Campbell soon scored his second of the day, delicately dinking the ball over Hislop after a splendid pass from David Weir at the end of a sweeping Everton interchange.

The irascible Wright was replaced by Marc Keller, but this switch failed to prevent the Londoners notching up more bookings – four – than shots on target.

Everton's fifth goal saw Campbell complete his treble, shooting in off a post after yet another astute pass by the excellent Hutchison, who proved the pick of a home midfield, in which Gemmill and Olivier Dacourt also impressed. Appropriately it was Hutchison's corner that preceded goal number six, headed in by Jeffers as Everton emphatically erased any lingering mathematical relegation worries. And, unusually for them, a full eight days before the end of the Premiership season.

Maybe that lap of honour wasn't so over the top.

Report © Times Newspapers Ltd

 Trickery of Campbell
by Richard Slater, The Independent on Sunday
If there is a bank to break at Everton next season - and that's still far from clear - then the first name on Walter Smith's shopping list will surely be Kevin Campbell. A hat-trick yesterday took his seven-match goal tally to nine and it's not being melodramatic to acknowledge that his strikes have secured his side's elite status.

A pensive start from both teams saw some neat passing in the middle third but little emerged of any more consequence in the attacking zones. That was until Kevin Campbell - who collected his Carling Player of the Month award prior to the kick-off - sparked his team into life when he bundled the ball over the line after a David Unsworth volley had been parried by Shaka Hislop. The goalkeeper's instinctive reaction save deserved better support from his defenders, but with no one taking responsibility for the clearance, Campbell's strike was a mere formality.

With Premiership survival now in their sights, Everton picked up the pace of their approach play and Francis Jeffers almost doubled the advantage when his narrow-angled shot was pushed over by a stretching Hislop. But it was Michael Ball who made absolutely certain of top-flight football next season. He converted the penalty earned by Scott Gemmill, after the Scotland international had been bundled over by Steve Lomas.

The home side were making it look easy, passing and retaining possession at will, and Jeffers and Campbell both could have added to the tally. Only a frustrated Paolo di Canio looked capable of prising open Everton's solid defence, but support for the Italian was sorely lacking.

Don Hutchison made it three after some fine play from Campbell, whose chipped pass supplied Jeffers with a volleying chance and, while he mis-timed his effort, the ball fell kindly to the Scottish international who rifled in from six yards.

After the first-half rout, the visitors emerged after the break seeking, at the very least, to add dignity to the scoreline. Eyal Berkovic and Trevor Sinclair combined well to create openings but the target men were not on hand to oblige.

The dereliction of duty applied equally at the other end where Jeffers and Campbell were given room to roam. The former Arsenal striker took advantage when, from David Weir's pass, he lifted a deft chip over Hislop to make a mockery of the side's respective positions in the Premiership.

West Ham's luck looked to have changed when the referee, Alan Wilkie, blew for a penalty when Di Canio was felled in the area, but Wilkie reversed his decision when he spotted an offside flag. Di Canio then missed a simple headed opportunity, but this only prompted Everton to press further. Campbell completed his hat-trick with a sweet left-footed drive. Jeffers headed home a sixth from a corner three minutes from time.

Report © The Independent

 Hat-trick hero still waiting on Everton
by Paul Walker, The Independent
Kevin Campbell, fresh from his hat-trick exploits for Everton on Saturday, said afterwards that he wants the club to sort out his future.

Campbell played the starring role in Saturday's mauling of a woeful West Ham to take his tally to nine goals in seven games. But next Sunday's final game of the season at Southampton, is Campbell's last on loan from Trabzonspor, and his long-term future with the hard-up Merseysiders is in doubt.

"Everton are in my heart, and I want to stay here," he said. "But obviously something has to be sorted out. I just don't know what is going to happen. I might even have to go back to Turkey; I don't want that, but I just don't know about my future."

Campbell's three goals were added to by Francis Jeffers, Don Hutchison and a Michael Ball penalty as the Hammers, who have conceded 11 goals in their last two games, looked like they had given up all thought of qualifying for Europe.

"I have let them know how I feel," West Ham manager Harry Redknapp said. "Yes, we had a bad day - there's no denying that. But it's not fair to judge a team on just one bad game. Next week we could win and end up finishing fifth."

Report © The Independent

 Campbell's heart at Everton
by Stephen Wood, The Times
ONE of the car-park attendants at Everton had warned Kevin Campbell early in the day that if he did not score a hat-trick this time, he would not be allowed out of Goodison Park. Alas, a few hours and three goals later, Campbell, the Everton striker, was being given a hero's valediction.

There were smiles all round and Campbell, like a true con artist, played his part to perfection, shaking people's hands and patting children on the head before making good his getaway. The stewards, on behalf of the whole club, may regret not locking Campbell's car and hiding the keys. For Everton fans have a new centre forward to idolise, augmenting the long line of other swashbuckling players from Dixie Dean to Duncan Ferguson.

Campbell, however, may not be around to idolise for much longer. On loan from Trabzonspor, the Turkish club, Campbell has scored nine goals in seven matches to transform Everton's season and, in doing so, has helped them to avoid relegation from the FA Carling Premiership. With a bank overdraft running at around £20 million, the club is going to struggle to find anything like the £3 million needed to buy him.

Walter Smith, the manager, has promised to make a big effort to secure Campbell's services and there are bound to be some fraught meetings with Sir Phillip Carter, the chairman, over the next few weeks. Other clubs, West Ham United included, have been alerted to Campbell's feats in recent times. However, if there is anything that should sway the outcome in Everton's favour, it is Campbell's attitude. After Nottingham Forest foolishly sold him last summer, and after the Trabzonspor chairman racially abused him earlier this season, Campbell has realised that Everton could save his career. "Everton are in my heart now," he said."The predicament is getting to me, because I am as much in the dark as anyone. If I had the money, I'd lend it to Everton myself for them to buy me.''

One player who has convinced Smith that he has a future at Everton is Don Hutchison, who dictated the game, scoring one goal and providing two for Campbell and another for Jeffers. Campbell's third and a penalty from Michael Ball completed the scoring. By contrast, West Ham hardly managed an attempt. Harry Redknapp, their manager, consigned it all to a bad day, but West Ham carry the aura of a side that have already clocked off for their holidays.

Report © Times Newspapers Ltd

 RESULTS  (Game 37)
Saturday 8 May 1999
Aston Villa           3-4  Charlton Athletic        37,705
Barry 6, Joachim 66,78     Barry og:3, Mendonca 56,             
                           Robinson 68, Mills 86
Blackburn Rovers      1-2  Nottingham Forest        24,565
Gallacher 25               Freedman 11, Bart-Williams 56
Derby County          0-0  Coventry City            32,450

Everton               6-0  West Ham United          40,049
Campbell 14,52,77, Ball pen:24,    
Hutchison 37, Jeffers 86
Leicester City        2-0  Newcastle United         21,125
Izzet 20, Cottee 41
Sheffield Wednesday   1-0  Liverpool                27,383
Cresswell 87
Wimbledon             0-2  Southampton              24,068
                           Beattie 71, Kachloul 83 
Sunday 9 May 1999
Middlesbrough         0-1  Manchester United        34,665
                           Yorke 45
Monday 10 May 1999
Tottenham Hotspur     2-2  Chelsea                  35,878
Iversen 38, Ginola 65      Poyet 4, Goldbeak 73
Tuesday 11 May 1999
Leeds United          1-0  Arsenal                  40,124                  
Hasselbaink 85
Wednesday 12 May 1999
Blackburn Rovers      0-0  Manchester United        30,436

 LEAGUE TABLE (after 12 May 1999 )
Club                          P    W    D    L   GF   GA   GD   Pts
Manchester United            37   21   13    3   79   36   42   76 <ECL
Arsenal                      37   21   12    4   58   17   41   75 <ECL
Chelsea                      37   19   15    3   55   29   26   72 <ECL
Leeds United                 37   18   12    7   60   32   28   66 <Uefa
Aston Villa                  37   15   10   12   51   45    6   55
West Ham United              37   15    9   13   42   53  -11   54
Derby County                 37   13   13   11   39   43   -4   52
Liverpool                    37   14    9   14   65   49   16   51
Middlesbrough                37   12   15   10   48   50   -2   51
Leicester City               37   12   13   12   40   45   -5   49
Tottenham Hotspur            37   11   14   12   46   48   -2   47 <Uefa
Newcastle United             37   11   12   14   47   54   -7   45 <Uefa
Sheffield Wednesday          37   12    7   18   40   42   -2   43
Everton                      37   11   10   16   42   45   -3   43
Wimbledon                    37   10   12   15   40   60  -20   42
Coventry City                37   11    8   18   37   49  -12   41 <Safe
Southampton                  37   10    8   19   35   64  -29   38
Charlton Athletic            37    8   12   17   41   55  -14   36
Blackburn Rovers             37    7   12   18   37   51  -14   33 <Div 1
Nottingham Forest            37    6    9   22   34   69  -35   27 <Div 1
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Last updated: 12 May 1999