Everton 2 - 1 Derby County
Half-time: 2 - 0
FA Carling Premiership 1999-2000 Game 25
3pm Saturday 12 February 2000
Goodison Park, Merseyside
Everton struggled for the first 20 minutes of this Premiership clash, with
Derby dominating possession. In Everton's first real attack, the
ref played advantage after Barmby was felled, the ball breaking to Pembridge
who slotted it forward; Joe-Max Moore rewarded with another start
in place of Francis Jeffers picked up a ball in the area and finished
in some style form an acute angle. Tommy Myhre continued to prove his
point in goal with a stunning save 7 mins before half-time.
Danny Cadamarteri, guaranteed his starting place in the team after
last week's inspirational work, again tried hard on the right wing with
the returning Barmby on the left. David Unsworth's one-match
suspension meant that Michael Ball, got his third start in a row.
Just on half-time, Gough was fouled in the penalty area, and Michael Ball
confidently dispatched the penalty kick.
Everton game out more determined in the second half, and should have immediately
had another penalty when Barmby was hauled down in the area. But they allowed
Derby back into the game when the substitute Avi Nimni scored with his first
touch, spoiling Tommy Myhre's clean-sheet record.
This really set the game up, and the tempo increased with both sides creating
good chances. A rare old tussle resulted, with the fans kept on the
edge of their seats until the very end. A vital win secured ahead of next
week's massive FA Cup 6th Round tie with Aston Villa.
Moore (24'), Ball (pen:45')
Subs Not Used
Myhre, Weir, Dunne, Gough, Ball, Barmby, Hutchison, Pembridge,
Cadamarteri (68' Collins), Moore, Campbell.
Unavailable: Unsworth (suspended);
Cleland, Gerrard, Williamson (injured); Bilic (in
Simonsen, Watson, Xavier, Jeffers.
Poom, Dorigo (63' Nimni), Laursen, Elliott, Eranio, Prior,
Johnson, Burley, Kinkladze, Strupar (46' Robinson), Sturridge (46' Christie).
Royal Blue shirts; white shorts; blue socks.
White shirts; dark blue shorts; white socks.
Cadamarteri (55'), Collins (67'), Ball (85').
Dorigo (23'), Burley (65'), Johnson (90').
There are few more beautiful sights in Christendom than the Netley when the
sun shines over the road at a particular angle. Comparisons with the
Doge's Palace in Venice come to mind. Some think of the great hall of King's
College, Cambridge; others of the Taj Mahal. And that is just the view
from just outside Iceland in Walton Road. Once inside, the splendour
has to be seen to be believed.
Yesterday saw the Netley back to its glorious best. As the limousine
carrying Jon Berman, Tony Lloyd and myself glided to a halt outside, the car
doors were opened by one of the five doormen, each resplendent in the
uniform of Admiral of the Fleet of Andorra. The other four, in the
manner normally reserved for the Pope and reigning monarchs, took the four
golden poles of the ecclesiastical canopy to escort us through the long
marble hall into the main saloon.
There presiding over proceedings with the regal grace that characterises
her every move was the lovely Mrs Wyman, once of this parish but now
incomprehensibly unsubscribed (something to do with the readers' wives war
of 1998 perhaps?). Equally radiant, flanking her were Stuart Roberts
and Jonathan Gard: Stuart in a splendid Everton sarong hand-woven from
Tibetan silk; Jon more understated in a sort of dingy grey pullover.
As more and more distinguished ToffeeNet
and BlueNose glitterati arrived to
swell the throng, the police had to be called to help out the Netley's own
security forces to hold back the crowds of autograph hunters and groupies
gathered in Langham Street. Some had even managed to evade security,
climb over the walls surrounding the hanging gardens, sneak through the
lesser ballroom and peer down from the balcony surrounding the main
lounge. They were, however, were driven back in fright by the
explosion of flashbulbs when the ever svelte Becky Tallentire slinked in
wearing a hat that would have graced the royal palace at Sodom. The
oohs and aahs from the girls peering through the balcony balustrade were
deafening when Guy McEvoy strode in. However, when Steve Allinson's
minders arrived, shortly followed the man himself clutching the NTAS
strongbox with its elegant Cadbury's Drinking Chocolate motif, the female
groupies could be contained no longer. The fire brigade, on standby
outside, was called in to hose them down.
The water dripping down the marble steps prompted recollections of Frank
Hargreaves' inspired designs for the proposed move of Anfield nearer its
main fanbase just outside Guildford. But time was pressing.
Having distributed blessings and indulgences, we then moved on to Goodison
Park where a football match was taking place.
Deceived by Cadamarteri's brief Indian summer last week against a
full-back thoughtfully crocked earlier on by Dunne, Walter Smith decided to
keep him in the team. Against a team of hardened old lags like Derby,
this effectively meant that we were playing with 10 men or at least a three
man midfield. The consequence was that we were overrun for much of the
first half. Hutchison was forced to play too deep to protect the back
four and we were therefore deprived of what, in my opinion, is his greatest
asset: those wonderful defence-splitting through balls that Jeffers and
Campbell are so adept at running onto.
It might seem churlish to complain about Moore after he has scored four
in the last five games but I don't think his running gives us the options
that Jeffers does. Nevertheless, while Jeffers needs the rest, Moore
is fitting the bill. Although Ball got better in the course of the
game, we missed the stability provided by Unsworth. From the half-way
line in the main stand, it is easy to see how much better our shape is when
Rhino is playing. Ball rather tends to wander off.
Anyway, thanks to an uncharacteristically reasonable display of
refereeing by Uriah Heap, we won. We didn't play well but Derby are a
difficult side and there is a special pleasure in seeing them feel hard done
by. The deliberate strategy by Jim Smith two
seasons ago which stopped the run being put together by Howard Kendall's
team after wins over Bolton, Crystal Palace and Chelsea can never be
forgiven. For recent arrivals, it will be recalled that they crocked Mickael
Madar after ten minutes, quite cynically got Duncan
Ferguson sent off, then left Tony
Grant with an injury from which he never really recovered.
And so back to the Ballspond Road. Phil wrote on Bluenose that he
had been hugged by San Presland. Now that is something to
treasure. I will never forget the day that San won the finals of the
Tango Championship in the main ballroom at the Netley held to celebrate the
end of the Toffeenet Wars. Those were the days.
On the way from the Netley to Goodison, we met Linda the Toffeegirl. What
memories that brought back – who could ever forgot the unseemly, not to say
steamy, electronic heavings between her and the legendary Joshua the blue
dildo. At the time, it will be recalled, Toffeenet was on full-time
battle alert, so she was lucky not to have been tried for treason.
Nevertheless, seeing outside the Winslow, the sun glinting on her braces,
reminded me of all those who seem to have passed on. Where are they
now? Joe Banerjee, Steve Malone, Lars the Norse, Joshua the Blue
Rubber Boy? I miss them. I need a hug from San.
Right Rev. Monsignor Aloysius Hairnet
Solid at the back
Strange game today. Derby County started well and tried to play this rapid
passing game that Leeds played against us bit it did not really
threaten. We did not look that dangerous going forward but we did look
more dangerous than Derby. Danny had a quiet game but Dorigo stuck to
him like glue – he is a feared player now! It seems Danny was not
used but he did have a couple of reasonable runs before being substituted by
Collins made a complete meal of things at one point in their box and
after beating several players the ball was cleared to Robinson I think.
Michael Ball tackled well but, as the ref was Uriah Rennie, he had to get
booked. Ball had a good game but he does not half wander out of
position at times.
I have lambasted Mr Rennie on occasions here and in that other place but
he did do show one absolutely class refereeing decision. Joe-Max’s
goal came from advantage – most of the Everton players and some of the
Derby players thought it was going to blown for. Uriah gesticulated that he
was waving play on and Joe-Max scored. Superbly taken goal – class
piece of refereeing.
But then Rennie booked six players today so he reverted to type...
We were well positioned to see the incident leading to the penalty: Gough
took one hell of a knock on his head – you could see the whiplash but I
didn’t see what caused it. In the mayhem you could not tell what
Rennie’s decision was. I did not see even a card. The bloke
behind thought there was an actual sending off because he was complaining
there was still 11 on after half time – that’s how ambiguous the whole
This was not a good performance but we do look solid at the back with
these players. Pembridge was better; Hutch was quiet. I do not think there
is as much understanding between Campbell and JMM. I would like to see
him played behind Campbell and Jeffers. On occasions Campbell seemed
to on his own with JMM wandering down the left or was it the right. It
was mightily difficult to know what Barmby’s and JMM’s roles really
were. But then when you are only three rows back in the Family
Enclosure, you tend to miss quite a lot...
Outplayed in midfield
The day had started badly and gradually got worse. Of
course "badly" is a relative term, depending on what your
perception of "well" might be... From my standpoint, I was
measuring against a "well" status of last Saturday. On that
day I had completed another golf lesson, with a much improved swing in place
and was determined that the progress I'd made over the previous few weeks
would be maintained. To do that I needed practice. The weather
and work conspired against me, so much so that when I picked up the clubs
today, all the progress of last week had gone, wafted away on the howling
gale. One step forward last week, two steps back this.
So, what's that got to do with Everton? Consistency is what's got
to do with Everton, or rather the lack of it.
Derby arrived at Goodison on the back of a four-game undefeated run,
including a late, late comeback last week as they scored two goals in added
time to draw with Sheffield Wednesday. Yet still they are perilously
close to the drop zone. We, on the other hand – the feast that was
Boxing Day aside – can look only to success over lower division teams at
home, in the cup. True, there was that glorious hiccup away at
Selhurst Park last week, but we've yet to set the world alight, in real
terms, despite the fact that, in patches, we're a match for anyone.
This is backed up by the fact that, although we haven't won too many of
late, we haven't been losing either, Southampton aside. So what would
today produce, the glory or the calamity? My early day experience
didn't bode well.
So it was off to Goodison to pick up my Villa tickets. At about
11:15 the queue wasn't too bad. It was, however, strangely
populated by a motley crew of around 60 from Northampton, diverted to us,
seeking spiritual enlightenment, their own game at Carlisle postponed.
As they got near to the front of the queue, one of the stewards decided it
would be a good idea if this lot stayed together. He pulled them all
aside and reserved one of the windows for then and then sought a spokesman
from amongst them. What a good idea, I thought. A bit of the
service mentality creeping in.
The spokesman approached the window and then a short tęte á tęte
ensued, which resulted in the confused group rejoining the main queue at the
back again! Not a good piece of public relations at all; but
wait.....a change of plan and the whole group was marched around to the
Goodison Road ticket office to be seen to there. Progress?
Maybe. Eventually (half an hour or so later) I got my tickets, not my
usual place, but close enough. That'll do me. Now to make sure I
hadn't picked up a ticket for miscreant parking. I passed the Goodison
Road ticket office.
A group of about 60 or so Northampton Town fans were waiting in a
queue. What could they be waiting for? They still didn't have
their tickets. If they ever got in to today's game, I don't know. Does
Speaking of the game.
Wind was the feature of a game, punctuated by moments of dazzling skill,
glaring misses and refereeing inconsistencies. A thriller, yes?
We were bettered in midfield as Hutchison and Pembridge were shrugged
aside by the busy and workmanlike Derby contingent. Kinkladze was
threatening every time he had the ball and we panicked whenever it was
ours. There was no shape and no control. Yet there were signs of
burgeoning confidence as we tried to break through a solid Derby back-line.
But it was all to no avail, when out of the blue, Barmby burst infield from
the touchline only to be up-ended.
We bayed for the book, but referee Uriah Rennie inexplicably waved play
on. Advantage Everton. The ball had dropped for us
and Mark Pembridge fed a peach of a ball out to Moore at the right corner of
the box. Moore took the ball in his stride and drilled a great shot into the
opposite corner of the net. 1 - 0 and we were awful. No fist in
the air for Rennie!
The rest of the half was much the same pattern. Derby played well
enough without creating too much. There was one effort from Eranio,
presented to him after much lax play down the Everton left, but a wondrous
diving save to his left from Myhre, saw the ball turned away for a
We pressed forward on occasion and one such foray brought a second
goal. A set piece (was it a corner or a free kick?) saw Gough elbowed
in the chest/neck area. Rennie blew up and pointed, well,
somewhere. It looked to me as though he'd awarded an indirect free
kick inside the box. The players didn't seem to know what had been
awarded either, as they milled around awaiting advice. Then the
decision was revealed, penalty! Yes! But no Unsworth today, so
up stepped Ball. Cool, calm, composed. The Iceman stepped
forward and sent Poom floundering to his left as the ball went to his
right. 2 - 0 and we were cruising. Half-time.
Walter must have bust a gut at half-time, because the second half brought
about a much needed improvement. Almost immediately we should have had
a penalty as Barmby was taken out in the box. Rennie ducked that one.
In midfield we nearly matched Derby, but with Barmby and Cadamarteri
staying out wide for the most part, the bulk of the duty fell on Hutchison
and Pembridge. In the main they gave a good account of themselves, but
sometimes they were overrun. Hutchison tried to play the deeper
holding role, but kept drifting up-field, leaving the defence exposed.
It was such an event that gave Derby hope, as they broke out of defence down
the Everton right, a swift incisive move that ended with the ball in the
Everton net. 2 - 1 and all to play for.
By this time we'd had chances but as fortunate bounces and ricochets went
the way of the visitors, we couldn't find the net. Our malaise in
front of goal continued after the Derby goal though, as a brilliantly sharp
and controlled move down the left saw Campbell feed Barmby, who had only to
tap it home. We rose to salute the goal (apparently it was reported on
ITV Teletext and SoccerNet, too) as Barmby slumped into a heap in front of a
disbelieving Gwladys Street, the ball having been pushed wide.
Twice more Barmby was thwarted as he sought to make amends. Derby
legs appeared where none deserved to be; Moore too, his short range pace
deserting him, failed to control a ball which might have seen a great ball
in from Barmby being converted for a third.
As is certain in games such as this, we became edgy protecting the one
goal lead. Balls flashed across the goal or zipped straight towards
Myhre. To everything Tommy was a match. What a relief it is to
see him back. He's really so much more composed than Gerrard, though
I'm sure there are some saves that Gerrard makes that Tommy would be nowhere
When the final whistle came it was a blessed relief. We'd been
generally outplayed in midfield and they lacked a real cutting edge up
front. Nevertheless we might still have had a sack full.
Man of The Match: Unmentioned, unsung, unflappable David Weir.
Why opt for the easy life?
After the much-needed win against Wimbledon, we were
presented within another eminently winnable game. Derby have been
struggling this season and shouldn't have posed too much of a threat, but
this is Everton and anything can happen. As well as a win, I was
hoping to see a step forwards in terms of our general play; it's a while
since we played really well and it's about time we went on a seriously good
run of form.
The team was as widely anticipated with Barmby returning
from suspension as Unsworth heads for his suspension. This meant a
line-up of Myhre in goal, a back four of Dunne, Weir, Gough and Michael
Ball. The midfield was Pembridge and Hutchison in the centre with
Cadamarteri on the right flank and Barmby on the left; up front it was
Campbell and Moore. An indication of the current lack of injuries in
our squad was the relative quality of our bench – Watson, Collins,
Jeffers, Xavier and Simonsen – some options to work with if things weren't
going according to plan.
As the game started, it was Derby who had the better of
the early exchanges. They had a worrying amount of possession and
territorial advantage; with players like Eranio and Kinkladze around that
could be dangerous. Not too much came of this early advantage but it
was all rather disappointing as I had rather hoped that it would have been
us taking the game to them.
As usual when trying to recall games, I struggle to
remember the precise sequence of events. Somewhere around the
twenty-minute mark a game that struggled to come to life all day briefly
sparkled thanks to a goal for us and a glorious chance for them. Their
chance fell to the always dangerous Eranio – he did very well down their
right to elude Barmby and Ball; this left him clear in our box approaching
goal from an acute angle. His shot was powerfully struck and
on-target; Tommy did very well to fling himself to his left to palm it away
for a corner. A top-class save and possibly the first truly meaningful
save of his comeback.
During the same period of the game, our goal duly
arrived. In truth it had looked anything but inevitable but did come
via a rare piece of decent approach play. The ball ultimately
landed at the feet of Moore in the right-hand corner of the area who
controlled the ball before cleanly beating the 'keeper. A piece of
good, confident finishing – he is proving to be something of an asset.
The goal didn't seem to spark the team. We continued
to be fairly solid and were keeping Derby at arms length but we never seemed
to be in control of the game. We continued to press forward without
looking unduly threatening and it looked like we were going to go in at
half-time with a 1-0 lead. Then in injury time we got an unexpected
break. We had a corner which bobbled about a bit, the ball ultimately
seemed to break for Richard Gough and as he went for the ball he was quite
clearly blocked by a Derby defender. Initially there was some
confusion as Rennie's signal wasn't too clear. It soon became clear
that we did indeed have a penalty and, in the absence of Unsie, it was his
able deputy Michael Ball who stepped up to coolly dispatch the penalty.
In all honesty, 2-0 flattered us but as we had shown
against Preston and Wimbledon we are resolute in defence and have the
capability of taking chances proffered to us. I certainly wasn't
feeling too much guilt about the scoreline.
Derby made a double half-time substitution in a bid to
change the shape of the game. Initially this didn't seem to work as we
started off the second half in control of the game. For once, we
passed the ball quite well and started to look like we could put the game
out of Derby's reach. There wasn't too much in the way of clear cut chances
but we were in charge of the game.
During this spell we should have put the game beyond Derby
but we seemed to lack the killer instinct to do so. Then, part way
through the second half, we made life very difficult for ourselves. A quick
break from our own corner saw Kinkladze pick up the ball just inside our
half; as usual we were quick to get bodies around him – two were there
straight away and Hutchison was moving back to help as well. The ball
ricocheted away from the clutch of players and managed to wrong foot Richard
Gough who was sweeping up behind, unfortunately it arrived at the feet of
their newly arrived substitute who, with his first touch of the ball,
applied a good finish to beat Tommy.
The complexion of the game changed. From having a
semblance of control on proceedings we were now under pressure. Derby
had been given a lift and with memories fresh from their unlikely comeback
against Sheffield Wednesday last week they clearly fancied their chances.
They came at us with some vigour and, as is the way in
these circumstances, that left space for us to work in. Within minutes
of their goal we were presented with a glorious chance to reassert our
authority. A quick break saw Campbell leading the charge; with Derby
outnumbered, he cleverly waited for support to arrive before slipping the
ball to Barmby. Barmby, from a central position, was now one on one
with the 'keeper, it seemed he had to score but in trying to curl the ball
around the keeper he also managed to curl it round the post. A very
The second half seemed to last an eternity. Derby
were very fired up and we were reduced to back-peddling with the occasional
foray forwards on the break. Despite some nervous moments we repelled
this "onslaught" with something to spare. Defenders like
Weir, Dunne and in particular Gough are very good in these sort of
We also bolstered the midfield with Collins coming on for
the ineffectual Cadamarteri. This was a clever move as the one thing
you can't fault Collins for is his defensive play. He may not be a
crunching tackler in the Parkinson mode but he is very good at closing the
play down and always knows where he should be on the pitch.
During this phase of the game it was very noticeable the
sheer distance between our front two and the midfield. As soon as
Derby had possession, Collins and Barmby were dropping back to be
supplementary full backs and Hutchison and Pembridge were patrolling the
area just in front of the centre backs. It didn't make for pretty
football but in terms of shutting out Derby it was mightily effective.
In the end it was one of those halves where you never felt
terribly comfortable but, on reflection, it was difficult to remember much
in the way of real goal danger. Despite the scares we gave ourselves,
we never really looked like we were going to get pegged back. But we
should have made life more comfortable for ourselves by making more of the
period of domination we had before their goal, and then the two gilt-edged
chances we had when they were chasing the game. But, then that always
seems to be the case with Everton, why opt for the easy life?
- Myhre 7 One excellent save, no chance with
the goal, generally authorative and in charge.
- Dunne 7 Solid, unspectacular performer.
- Weir 7 He is enjoying a remarkably
consistent season. Yet another solid game.
- Gough 7 Must be the signing of the
season. His influence on the pitch is always apparent. He
never stops talking, he defends brilliantly and he is always looking to
get the ball on the deck to his midfielders.
- Ball 6 Thought he was disappointing
today. His first touch was rather poor and some of his defending
wasn't the best. We missed Unsworth.
- Cadamarteri 5 I'd expected quite a bit
from him today. I thought that he could bring a lot of balance to the
team and that his pace and dribbling ability could make things happen
for us. It never happened, he looked tentative and uninvolved.
- Hutchison 6 Still not doing what he is
capable of. Some good moments and good passes but not enough.
- Pembridge 6 Had a decent game, got
involved and did well in the build up to the goal.
- Barmby 7 His usual effort and work rate
and always looked the most likely to make something happen but not
really at his best these days, some good moments and should have scored.
- Campbell 7 A lively and intelligent
performance, no chances fell his way but he linked the play well.
- Moore 7 His recent scoring record says it
all and he has been an absolute god-send to us. Took his goal really
well and was always looking to get involved.
- Collins 6 Did a good job for us in helping
with our rearguard action.
Team 6 I don't want to be seen as criticising
the team too much; I fully realise how far we have come this season, and I
fully acknowledge the qualities we do possess. But that shouldn't
disguise the fact that we aren't actually playing that well. This was
another fairly fitful performance where we struggled to impose ourselves on
the game and during the period where we did manage to impose ourselves we
failed to cash in. To me, once again, it was central midfield that was
the real problem area, any kind of attacking initiative from that quarter
was starkly absent.
Man of the match Joe-Max Moore - I didn't feel that
there were any stand-out candidates today. Weir and Gough both did well and
Barmby was another who caught the eye. But, for me Moore was the man.
Moore leaves Everton merrier
Derick Allsop, Electronic Telegraph
EVERTON salvaged just enough substance from the debris of a disjointed
match to leave Derby County even more concerned for their future.
Had Nick Barmby taken one of three second-half chances, Everton would
have been spared some late tension but they have at least discovered one
reliable goalscorer in Joe-Max Moore, who is promising to become the new
cult hero of Goodison Park. The American dispatched his fourth goal in five
appearances for Everton to illuminate an otherwise dismal match.
An unforgiving wind palpably made conditions difficult, but some of the
unforced errors were straight from park football. Moore capitalised on
Everton's only chance fashioned from open play in the first half.
best effort, a shot from Stefano Eranio, was turned away by Thomas Myhre
and, just before the interval, Everton extended their lead, Michael Ball
scoring from the penalty spot.
Everton sought to protect their unbeaten home record by retaining two
players prominent in last week's win at Wimbledon, Danny Cadamarteri and
Moore. Derby, occupying the nether regions Everton have been familiar with
in recent seasons, invited Georgi Kinkladze to give full expression to his
talent with a place in the starting line-up for the first time in two months
and the Georgian obliged with a display of impish skill.
Don Hutchison offered Everton's first threat when he tried a shot from
distance only to strike one of a posse of Derby defenders closing in on him,
and then Mart Poom, the Derby goalkeeper, had to sprint from his area to
beat Kevin Campbell as he tried to meet Hutchison's pass.
Everton, having at last generated some momentum, went ahead in the 24th
minute. As their supporters appealed for a foul on Barmby, referee Uriah
Rennie ushered play on and the much-derided Pembridge delivered an excellent
pass to Moore, who beat Poom low to his right. The official appeared not to
Derby, in apparent disarray, somehow went close to equalising after 37
minutes. Eranio cut in from the right and Myhre had to produce an athletic
save to deny him.
As the break loomed, Spencer Prior was penalised for an infringement
against Richard Gough and Ball thumped Everton's second from the penalty.
Dean Sturridge and Branko Strupar paid for Derby's poor first half with
their places, which was hard considering the lack of service.
Poom saved spectacularly from Cadamarteri and Myhre in regulation manner
from Seth Johnson before Avi Nimni, with his first contribution as
substitute for Tony Dorigo, profited from Kinkladze's ingenuity and the
rebound of Gough to pull back a goal in the 60th minute.
Everton punish Rams for a failure to
by John Aizlewood, The Sunday Times
THIS was a peculiar encounter in which swathes of meandering stodge were
interspersed with segments of end-to-end, edge-of-the-seat fare.
Everton deserved a slender victory gifted to them by a needlessly conceded
penalty, but plodding Derby's inability to utilise their strike force cost
them dear. "That was hard work," shrugged Everton manager
Walter Smith, "but we expected that. Derby pushed us back, but
they couldn't match our workrate."
Unbeaten in the Premiership at home, an FA Cup quarter-final a week
today, and a boardroom as harmonious as one of deputy chairman Bill
Kenwright's better West End shows: these are boom times at Goodison Park,
which may yet see its first top 10 finish since 1995-96.
With Rory Delap felled by a stomach virus, Derby County manager Jim Smith
gambled on Georgi Kinkladze as playmaker behind the nimble Dean Sturridge
and the more ox-like Branko Strupar. The will-o-the-wisp
Georgian promised much in a glum first quarter during which Everton minds
Everton repeatedly squandered midfield possession, depriving Joe-Max
Moore and Kevin Campbell of service until the 24th minute, when Nicky Barmby
took matters into his own hands. He dispossessed Craig Burley and
skipped over crude Derby lunges. Aided by referee Uriah Rennie's
thoughtful application of the advantage rule, Barmby kept his feet to find
the onrushing Mark Pembridge, who neatly squared first-time for Moore to
plant the ball wide of Mart Poom's outstretched right hand. It was his
third goal in successive games.
Derby's response was muted until the 40th minute, when Stefano Eranio's
low drive from 10 yards stung Thomas Myhre's previously unused
fingertips. The contest was settled moments before half-time when
Spencer Prior elbowed Richard Gough to the ground after Don Hutchison's
corner. After much deliberation Rennie awarded a penalty, which
Michael Ball converted. "I don't know how referees sleep at night
making decisions like that," said Jim Smith. "He didn't see
it. If there's doubt, it's not a penalty."
At half-time Jim Smith replaced his strike force. After two minutes
of the second half, he probably wished he could have exchanged his defence,
too, when poor Prior looked to have tripped Barmby inside the area
("Definitely a penalty," claimed Walter Smith; Jim Smith kept his
counsel). Moments later Poom saved athletically from unmarked Danny
Cadamarteri's rip-roaring drive. As Sheffield Wednesday would confirm,
writing off Derby County is a perilous enterprise. On the hour,
Kinkladze stirred. His exquisite through ball caught out the
38-year-old Gough, and Israeli substitute Avi Nimni sauntered through to
score his first Premiership goal. "At that point, I thought we
were going to get something," said Jim Smith.
Suddenly the game came to life. Derby's confidence swelled, but as
they pushed forward, Everton exploited the gaps adroitly. Barmby and
Moore began to link incisively with hard-running Kevin Campbell, and the
introduction of John Collins finally gave Everton's midfield authority to
complement Barmby's maverick gifts. The newly lissom Barmby, returning
after suspension, created two chances for himself and another for Moore,
only to be foiled by Poom and the post.
A landslide would have been harsh on Derby, they pressed to the bitter
end. Nimni's curled free kick sailed inches over, and he miskicked
when well-placed, but last week's heroics were never to be,
Toffees eschew quality street
by Richard Slater, The Independent
So Everton, in maintaining their unbeaten home
record and taking the points in this turgid affair, edge towards a European
berth – not that continental opposition would be too concerned, such was
the lack of overall quality in their play.
A stuttering start by Everton allowed the visitors the majority of the
early possession with Seth Johnson providing the muscle and Georgi Kinkladze
the delicacy to prise open spaces on the flanks to exploit.
With quality at a premium, Kinkladze's neat interchanges with Stefano
Eranio, who was having the better of his tussle with Michael Ball on the
Derby right, were welcomed, but nothing of consequence was created.
The first chance fell to Everton's Mark Pembridge on the break but Kevin
Campbell's pass forced the midfielder to overstretch and the shot flew high.
But in Everton's first constructive move Joe-Max Moore, in only his second
start, found an unlikely goal. The referee, Uriah Rennie, played an
advantage after a foul on Nicky Barmby. Pembridge laid a simple pass to the
unmarked Moore who, from just inside the box, slotted beyond the reach of
Derby's best chance of the first half came after a fine turn by Craig
Burley, who pushed a low pass into the box for Eranio to strike but Thomas
Myhre was equal to the shot, palming it just past his left-hand post.
Ball doubled the advantage with a spot-kick in first-half injury time
when Rennie generously awarded a penalty after Spencer Prior was adjudged to
have impeded Richard Gough.
Jim Smith, Derby's manager, was clearly far from happy and replaced his
strikeforce of Dean Sturridge and Branko Strupar with Malcolm Christie and
Marvin Robinson at the break. But in truth, there was too little quality
service to blame them.
It almost got worse for the visitors when Danny Cadamarteri's shot on the
turn tested Poom before Johnson squandered a Derby opportunity, shooting
into the grasp of Myhre.
Ironically, an enforced substitution let Derby back into the tie. Avi
Numni, who replaced the injured Tony Dorigo minutes earlier, darted forwards
to take advantage of Kinkladze's fine run and pass to score.
Barmby then missed a pair of glorious chances to put the issue beyond
doubt, the first a sitter as, with only the keeper Poom to beat, he pulled
his shot wide.
Everton keenly aware of slim divide
by Nick Szczepanik, The Times
EVERTON are in seventh place in the FA Carling Premiership, in the
quarter-finals of the FA Cup and already have as many points as they did by
the middle of April last season. Yet Walter Smith, their manager, is not
doing cartwheels. He did, however, become unusually animated in the final
stages on Saturday as Derby County almost completed a recovery from a
deficit of two goals to snatch a point that they would just about have
deserved. As Smith admitted, there was little to choose between an Everton
side that might qualify for a European place and Derby, who only stayed out
of the bottom three thanks to West Ham United's exploits against Bradford
"Derby County show you the problems you have in England," Smith
said. "Last season, they were fighting to try to get a place in Europe.
The team has changed a little and now they're concerned about relegation.
The gap between teams is not that great, unless, like Chelsea, you can
invest enough to get out of that batch of clubs in the middle."
Although Smith dismissed talk of Europe, even via the InterToto Cup, as
premature, he was relieved that Everton were not in their more typical
seventeenth place, a position at present occupied by Derby. "It is a
credit to the players; they, more than anyone, have worked extremely hard to
get where they are, and played a bit of football. But even when they're not
playing football, they are making it very difficult for other teams,"
That seemed to be their best hope early on as Derby began with more
urgency, but not even Giorgi Kinkladze was able to conjure a decisive
breakthrough in the windy conditions. Another unpredictable element was
Uriah Rennie, the referee, who was having a typically eccentric afternoon
but did well in the 24th minute to play an advantage after a foul on Nick
It allowed Mark Pembridge to pick out Joe-Max Moore with a diagonal pass
and the American shot briskly across Mart Poom into the far corner to
register his fourth goal in five matches. Rennie also spotted a foul by
Spencer Prior on Richard Gough, which allowed Michael Ball to double
Everton's lead from the penalty spot in first-half stoppage time. "At
most, obstruction but never a penalty," Jim Smith, the Derby manager,
Rennie declined to penalise a far clearer foul by Prior on Barmby a
minute after the interval and Avi Nimni, the Israel midfield player, halved
the deficit just before the hour after coming on as a substitute. He slipped
the ball past Thomas Myhre after charging down a clearance attempt by Gough.
Barmby could have punished Derby's defence immediately, but his failure then
and later to find a finish ensured a tense finale, in which another penalty
claim, after Malcolm Christie was felled by Gough, was rejected. "We
should have got a draw," Jim Smith said. If it is any consolation, his
namesake, Walter, had some sympathy.
Times Newspapers Ltd