Jul 18, 2009
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BREAKING NEWS – June 30, 2010

Everton F.C. today announced that manager David Moyes has left the club following a series of dramatic fallouts with some of the board members, while also stating a reason as a preparation for the impending vacancy at Manchester United.
Many rumours are floating around the football world as to who will be destined for the top job on Merseyside, with Birmingham manager Alex Mcleish and Bolton Wanderers manager Owen Coyle the two most likely to land the job. However, this is talk of another figure in the race for the job, with Gregg Venables, an Everton favourite with the fans, hoping to get the job.
Venables started out as a youngster at Everton, eventually forcing his way into the first team before a series of injuries plagued his career. As a result, he called time on his playing career at the age of 28 and has since been a part of former manager Moyes’ backroom staff.
Nonetheless, the speculation as to who will become Everton F.C.’s next manager continues to mount as the Premiership season comes closer.

BREAKING NEWS – July 6, 2010​

With the position of Everton manager being open for just a few days, Chairman Bill Kenwright has announced today that the job will be given to Everton legend Gregg Venables. The news comes as a bit of a shock within the footballing world as the board has opted for a man with relatively no managerial experience other than the reserve league.
Nevertheless, Kenwright was quick to say that they believe that Venables is the best suited for the job at this time and that his appointment will serve the club well going forward, as they prepare to attack the league in hopes of securing a Europa League spot for next season.
A press conference will be held shortly to present the new manager to the public and answer any questions that come his way.



Everton F.C’s new manager Gregg Venables was presented before the press today at Goodison Park, alongside Chairman Bill Kenwright. The conference comes a day after the Everton board announced through a statement on the club’s website that Venables will be the man they choose to push the club into the new season.
While questions were asked about his confidence in the job, the main focus was placed solely on his belief in being able to keep some of his star players, who are falling under heavy speculation of transfers. One name stuck out, as the press asked about influential midfielder Steven Pienaar.
“I firmly believe in my ability to keep Steven at Goodison Park,” Venables said. “If he wanted to go, he would have handed in a written request to leave. He has not done so yet, and we take that as a sign that he wants to see out his football in front of the Everton fans.
“In regards to my policies, I will be doing all that I can to keep the likes of Pienaar, Anichebe, Vaughan, Baxter and any other names that fall into the contract speculations. I expect my players to be loyal servants to the club and our fans; if I see that complacency becomes an issue with any player, or that they are not showing the determination for the club as a whole, I will not think twice about offering them to other clubs.”
Venables takes charge of the club before their preseason kicks off, giving him adequate time to shape the team how he wants, and will receive full backing by the board and Chairman Bill Kenwright.

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Transfers and Contracts
As promised, Venables’ first act as Everton manager was to secure contracts of some of his more important players, which he has done. Jose Baxter and Shane Duffy have each inked a new contract, tying them down until 2015, while youngster James Wallace penned his first professional contract with the club until 2015. Sixteen year old Ross Barkley has also agreed to a pre-contract deal which will see him remain at Goodison until 2013.

Sanhausen 1 – 4 Everton
Louis Saha (3)​
Diniyar Bilyaletdinov​
Venables: Definitely a well deserved win. Louis was on fire today, so I’m hoping he can keep this kind of form up heading into the season. We do have news on the injury of Steven Pienaar, and as it stands, he will be out for upto three weeks, leaving him with a fitness race for the start of the season.

Dresden 1 – 2 Everton
Yakubu (2)​
Venables: Another strong performance away from home. I know it is preseason but if the players carry the morale of these matches into the season then we should have no trouble reaching the top five. I am a little concerned for Yakubu, however, as he looked pretty tired at half time.

HSV 2 – 3 Everton
Diniyar Bilyaletdinov (2)
Seamus Coleman​
Venables: I have been impressed so far with the clinical finishing that we are displaying for sure, but the defending is something that we have to improve on. We haven’t kept a clean sheet in preseason yet, and I feel that the goals we have conceded could have definitely been prevented. Nevertheless, Diniyar is really impressing me right now, and I hope he keeps it up. One concern is of Louis Saha, as he is facing four weeks out, leaving him a doubt for the opening day of the season.

Preston 0 – 0 Everton
Venables: Yes, there are a couple of concerns after that match. Despite our strong finishing, nothing was really happening for us. Hopefully we can finish strong against Everton Chile and F.C. United and use that momentum for the new season.

Everton (CHI) 0 – 3 Everton
Tim Cahill
Yakubu (2)​
Venables: I am pleased that we bounced back with this performance. Yakubu was especially impressive with those goals. He has definitely improved on his fitness as shown by him completing the whole match.
Everton 5 – 0 F.C. United
Jermaine Beckford
Tim Cahill
Phil Jagielka
Diniyar Bilyaletdinov
Leon Osman​
Venables: It was a special way to end preseason, for sure. I’m just hoping that we can keep up the momentum into the season.

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Campbell Sinks Toffees
Everton 0 – 1 Blackpool
Venables: I am not pleased with today’s performance. The fans did not deserve to see the players like that. In due words, Blackpool were impressive today, and the goal was no less than they deserved. I just hope we can kick off our season in the next match, and forget about this misery.

Strike Force Bolstered for Bolton
Everton will be pleased to have striker Louis Saha back in training following a four week lay off through injury. The return of the striker comes after the dismal attacking display seen against Blackpool on the opening day, where the Toffees slumped to a 0 -1 defeat at home.
In other Everton news, Shane Duffy has become the subject of much speculation of a move in the last few days, with reported offers from Chelsea and Manchester United being rejected for the defender. Also, Shkodran Mustafi was involved in a transfer speculation as Italian side Cagliari made an unsuccessful move for the youngster.
Olympique Lyonnais manager Claude Puel has also sparked interest in Everton defender Sylvain Distin and may look to make a bid for the 32 year old before the transfer window closes on September 1st.

15 Minute Comeback Stuns Bolton
Bolton 2 – 3 Everton
Beckford (2)​
Venables: Obviously, I am very pleased with that comeback. Being two down away from home is always a hard thing to come back from, but we did it. I am pleased with Beckford and Osman for the goals. However, we should never have been two down in the first place, so defending is something that we must improve on if we are to have a good season.

Vaughan on Form in League Cup Win
Everton 2 – 0 MK Dons​
James Vaughan (2)​
Venables: Very pleased with that win, more specifically with Vaughan’s performance. He and Beckford are certainly the two on form strikers this season and so far it’s a battle between those two for star striker spot.

Pienaar Secures Toffee Win
Everton 2 – 1 Aston Villa
Tim Cahill​
Steven Pienaar​
Venables: Great comeback. Looked a little glum in the first half, but that second half was something else. Cahill and Pienaar played well and I’m glad we came out with the win.

Chelsea and Manchester United lie locked on 9 points at the top of the table. Liverpool, Manchester City, Tottenham, Everton, Stoke, Blackburn and Sunderland occupy 3rd to 9th spot on the table, each level on 6 points so far. At the other end of the table it is Blackpool, Aston Villa and Wolves who lie in the relegation zone, with Wolves being the only team yet to secure a single point.
Bolton captain Kevin Davies won Player of the Month, while Blackburn’s Phil Jones was awarded Young Player of the Month. Goal of the Month went to Stoke’s Glen Whelan for his long range wonder strike against Manchester United, and Manager of the Month went to Manchester United’s Sir Alex Ferguson, who has managed to secure all possible points with wins over Arsenal, Blackburn and West Ham.
Goal of the Month went to Stoke’s Glen Whelan for his long range wonder strike against Manchester United, and Manager of the Month went to Manchester United’s Sir Alex Ferguson, who has managed to secure all possible points with wins over Arsenal, Blackburn and West Ham.[/QUOTE]

Very good story but according to you stoke didnt play man utd so how did glen whelan score a wonder goal against them?
Goal of the Month went to Stoke’s Glen Whelan for his long range wonder strike against Manchester United, and Manager of the Month went to Manchester United’s Sir Alex Ferguson, who has managed to secure all possible points with wins over Arsenal, Blackburn and West Ham.

Very good story but according to you stoke didnt play man utd so how did glen whelan score a wonder goal against them?[/QUOTE]

Sorry! meant to put City. Wonder goal against Man City

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Disitn and Cahill Out Until 2011

Everton have been hit with the news that central defender Slyvain Distin and Australian international Tim Cahill will be sidelined for the rest of year.
Early reports say that Distin, 32, broke down during a training session and will be forced to be sent to a specialist for treatment. Cahill, 30, is said to have suffered a broken ankle during training and will be out for five months.
The two injuries are sure to dent Everton’s performances for the time being, with both Distin and Cahill being integral parts of the first XI in recent matches.

More Injury Woes for Everton
Following the news of Distin and Cahill being sidelined, news has surfaced that creative midfielder Steven Pienaar and French striker Louis Saha will now sit out at least the next two weeks with injuries.
Saha should be the first to recover as his injury is a strained wrist, while Pienaar is out because of a fractured arm.

Everton Secure Point at Old Trafford
Man Utd 0 – 0 Everton
Venables: It was a good performance away from home, for sure. I am pleased with the way the players rallied without some key players like Cahill, Distin, Saha and Pienaar. If we can stick like this in every game, it is definitely going to be hard for Saha and Pienaar to break back into the XI.

Beckford Shines in Everton Win
Everton 1 – 0 Newcastle

Jermaine Beckford​
Venables: Oh it was a great performance. We held them on every part of the pitch and the goal was nothing less than we deserved. I’m delighted with the way Beckford is settling in the Premier League. If we keep playing like this, Europa League might even be just the least we can do.

Everton Progress through Debutant Silva
Sheff Utd 1 – 2 Everton
Joao Silva (2)​
Venables: Silva really did play great today. I am definitely proud of the lad. Two glass cutter type goals on his debut, what more could be asked? We keep moving through this tournament and who knows, this year it could be ours!

Arteta Ruled Out

Everton’s influential vice-captain Mikel Arteta has been ruled out for upto three weeks with a thigh strain sustained in training. The news comes at a blow as the creative midfielder will miss the West Brom and Fulham games, while ruling him a doubt for the trip to Tottenham on October 16th.

West Brom Stun Toffees
West Brom 1 – 0 Everton
Venables: I am most definitely disappointed with that result. Matches against teams situated around where West Brom are right now should be a secure three points for us. Nothing was going for us out there; we missed a lot of chances to score, which is something we will have to improve on.

Month Round-Up
Coming to the end of September, it is Chelsea who top the table on 15 points, with Man Utd a close second on 14. At the other end, Aston Villa, Wolves and Wigan round fill the relegation spots with Villa on 4 points, and 3 points each for Wolves and Wigan.
Fernando Torres picks up the Player of the Month award with three goals in two games. Blackburn’s Phil Jones once again scoops the Young Player of the Month award for the second time running. Goal of the Month went to goes to Birmingham’s James McFadden against Blackpool as he caps a beautiful run with a lob over the keeper. Finally, Manager of the Month goes to Roy Hodgson as he guided Liverpool to a 5 – 0 victory over Sunderland, and a 1 – 0 win at home to Arsenal.

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10 Man Everton Beat Fulham
Everton 2 – 0 Fulham​

Saha, Bilyaletdinov​
Everton were in action at home this weekend with Fulham their visitors. Returning striker Louis Saha struck the net inside 10 minutes after a beautifully crafted attacking move. Shortly after, a penalty was awarded as Saha was then brought down in the area after a heavy challenge from Brede Hangeland, forcing him to be substituted for Jermaine Beckford. Bilyaletdinov stepped up to the spot but was denied by the post.
In the second half it was much of the same with silky smooth passing and attacking play from the home side. Bilyaletdinov then made up for his penalty miss with a great shot from outside the area which flew past Mark Shwarzer and completed the scoring at 2 – 0. Nearing the 80th minute, it was the Everton captain Phil Neville who was called over by the referee to be shown a straight red card after being the last man as he fouled Chris Baird to stop a surging run.
Venables: All around, it was a great game. Attacking we were clinical, and our defending was a jewel in the crown, as shown with Heitinga getting Man of the Match. We did get an early update on Saha’s injury, and maybe it was a little too early to bring him back. My physio’s say we should send him to a specialist, so it looks like he will be out for a solid two months.

Arteta to Lead Team at Tottenham
With Phil Neville suspended for the trip to White Hart Lane, Spanish midfielder Mikel Arteta is set to captain the side as they take on Tottenham at the weekend. Arteta, 28, had been out of action for a few weeks following a thigh strain, which caused him to miss the away loss to West Brom and the home win against Fulham.

Honours at White Hart Lane
Tottenham 0 – 0 Everton
Everton travelled to White Hart Lane on Monday night to take on Tottenham with both teams competing for a spot in Europe come the end of the season. Tottenham made a bright start to the game, with Van der Vaart and Robbie Keane both testing Tim Howard, however only from long range as Jagielka and Heitinga pressed the two attackers on every run. A few corners each way and the first half was at an end.
Everton’s Mikel Arteta picked up a knock at the beginning of the second half and was substituted for Leon Osman. Keane was then replaced by Jermaine Defoe, who was in turn closed down at every chance by the Everton defence. In the end it was a draw as both teams held up their own sturdy defences, denying any real chances to score.
Venables: At the end of the day, it’s a point away from home, which I am happy with. Ledley King and Kaboul did a good job of closing down our attackers, and Jags and Heitinga were rock solid with their defending. We didn’t lose, that’s the main thing. You can’t lose if you don’t concede, right?

Bilyaletdinov Secures Late Win
Everton 1 – 0 Wigan
Everton were in action today as they hosted Roberto Martinez’s Wigan. With plenty of shots from both teams, they still went in level at 0 – 0 at half time, but it was Everton who looked the more lively coming out to the second half.
As a huge blow to Everton, their creative Spanish midfielder Mikel Arteta had to be stretchered off the pitch following a tackle from Hendry Thomas, with Rodwell being the man to replace him. As the clock ticked on, Fellaini managed to find Diniyar Bilyaletdinov in the area to blast his shot past Ali Al Habsi to score the winning goal in the 85th minute. With the win, Everton move to fourth position, just six points off of top.
Venables: Good goal from Billy to win it. It was a highly competitive match from the first whistle to the last one. We got news on Arteta’s injury, and right now it does not look good. We can confirm that he has suffered a broken ankle, so it is going to be a while before he comes back into the team.

Arteta Out Until 2011
Spanish midfielder and Everton vice-captain has been ruled out of action until at least January of 2011 following a broken ankle sustained in the 1 – 0 win against Wigan last weekend. The creative midfielder is another name that has been added to the list of injuries for Everton, as he joins the likes of Tim Cahill who is also out until the New Year.
Everton will no doubt miss Arteta but are boosted by the news that Sylvain Distin’s recovery has gone for better than once hoped, as he is eying the upcoming trip to Birmingham as his potential return date.

Jagielka Nods Everton On
Everton 2 – 1 Tottenham

Bilyaletdinov, Jagielka​
Everton are through to the quarter finals of the League Cup following an impressive win at home to Tottenham in midweek. David Bentley opened the scoring on Wednesday night with a free kick that narrowly beat Tim Howard at his near post. Winger Diniyar Bilyaletdinov then equalised for the Blues with a strike from just inside the box, and Phil Jagielka put the Toffees ahead right on half time as he headed in Bilyaletdinov’s great corner.
With the win, Everton advance into the next stage of the Cup, with other teams such as Manchester United, Aston Villa and Burnley who were able to advance on Wednesday night.
Venables: I must say that this is a trophy that we can win this season. I don’t want to sound cocky, but with a display like the one tonight, it should be ours for sure.

Brilliant Stoke Stun Toffees
Everton 1 – 2 Stoke
Coming off of some impressive recent performances, Everton suffered their first loss in four games as they faced Stoke this past Saturday. Kenwyne Jones scored a close range header to put the visitors up 1 – 0 before Lucas Licht fired a screamer past Tim Howard to make it 2 – 0 going into half time.
Everton could hardly do anything in the second half until Belgian international Marouane Fellaini struck the net to reduce the lead to 2 – 1, though it was all the Everton attack force could do.
It comes as a bit of a shock for me personally. I thought this would have been a game in which we would win comfortably, but I have been proved wrong. Being two down at half time is never a thing that a manager wants to see, and the second half wasn’t much better. At least our fans got to see a Felli’ goal.

Monthly Round-Up
With the month of October at a close, Manchester United top the table with 26 points, but Chelsea are right behind on 25. Wolves, Birmingham and Wigan fill up the drop zone with 7, 7 and 6 points respectively. Player of the Month goes to United’s Wayne Rooney, who has scored a whopping 8 goals in 4 appearances. Young Player of the Month is awarded to Blackburn’s Steven N’Zonzi, and Goal of the Month goes to Lee Bowyer for his dazzling chip into the net against Arsenal. Finally, Manager of the Month goes to Arsene Wenger, who has managed to conjure wins against Liverpool, Wigan, Sunderland and Birmingham this month.
Very enjoyable mate, excellent reading, keep it up,

I am very interested in following your progress and your fight for the euro have had a tough run with injuries, do you think you will make any transfers in the january window?
Very enjoyable mate, excellent reading, keep it up,

I am very interested in following your progress and your fight for the euro have had a tough run with injuries, do you think you will make any transfers in the january window?

I am really considering it. Yakubu might have to leave if he doesn't start banging them in as much as I would want him to. Definitely looking at a couple strikers to bolster my attack. That should be just about it though because all other areas I'm still strong in, like with Osman playing my Arteta role, and Gueye has been playing pretty good on the left side. I'm only playing him there because i normally put Billy in the Cahill role behind the striker with Gueye on the left and Pienaar on the right.

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Everton Thrash Birmingham
Birmingham 2 – 4 Everton

Bilyaletdinov, Yakubu, Baines (2)​
Everton were on the road this week as they travelled to St. Andrew’s to take on an ever improving Birmingham side. The Brum made a good start to the game, as on-loan striker Roque Santa Cruz slotted home to put Birmingham in the lead. Shortly after, Russian midfielder Diniyar Bilyaletdinov went on a blistering run taking on three defenders before beating Ben Foster at his near post to level it. Nigerian international Yakubu then got on the end of a Steven Pienaar cross to put the Toffees up 2 – 1 going into halftime.
After the break, it was the home side who started the second half off a lot better than their visitors. Serbian striker Nikola Zigic headed home a cross from Sebastian Larsson to make it 2 – 2 with just five minutes gone. A handful of chances for both teams came before Yakubu was fouled just outside the box, allowing England left-back Leighton Baines to step up and hammer home a great free-kick to put his side up 3 – 2 with ten minutes to go. Shortly after, Jonny Heitinga picked up his second yellow card of the day and was off, leaving Fellaini to fill in as makeshift centre half. Nearing the end of the match, Scott Dann brought Magaye Gueye down outside the area, and again it was Leighton Baines who stepped up and smashed his second free-kick into the back of the net to seal the win at 4 – 2.
Venables: It feels good to get back on our feet after the match against Stoke. Finding the net that many times is a wonderful sight, and given that it was at St. Andrew’s as well made it a little more sweet. Baines’ free-kicks were great and I hope he can keep that level of his game up for a while. Billy was definitely one of the most influential players out there and I am very pleased at how he has performed in the Cahill role.

Inconsistency Costs Everton
Everton 0 – 3 Man City
Everton’s day-in, day-out troubles continued this weekend as they hosted title chasers Manchester City. Everton, coming off of a 4 – 2 win at Birmingham last week, could not have made a worse start to the match as City striker Carlos Tevez slipped behind the Toffee defence and scored the first goal of his impressive hat-trick. Yakubu managed to test keeper Shay Given, though not enough to get the ball into the back of the net.
The second half saw much of the same, with City looking the more likely to score, which they did. Carlos Tevez again popped up out of nowhere behind Phil Jagielka and the returning Sylvain Distin to score his second of the day following a clinical cross from David Silva. Nearing the 80th minute Everton finally got going, with a dominating spell of possession, though they were not able to make it count. In stoppage time, Leighton Baines was left in disbelief as the referee called a handball inside the area, though Baines saw otherwise. Nonetheless, it was Carlos Tevez who stepped up to the spot and completed his hat-trick, leaving Everton wondering where it all went wrong.
Venables: Not a good performance at all. Nothing went good for us, and we did a horrible job of closing down the opposition. The two goals from open play that we conceded should not have even happened, and for that I am disappointed.

Baines Sidelined on International Duty
Everton’s injury list has claimed another name, as left back Leighton Baines is now ruled out for at least a month. Baines was on international duty with England and fell awkwardly during the match against France, which has been confirmed that he has suffered a broken arm. His injury is another to add to the list of continued woes as the Toffees try to claim a European spot for next season.

Howard Saves Point for Everton
Sunderland 0 – 0 Everton
Tim Howard earns the Man of the Match award as Everton draw at Sunderland this past week. The American goalkeeper was in top form as he parried saves away from left, right and center. Neither side could score, though Sunderland were definitely the more dominant of the two sides and will feel like they lucked out on snatching all three points today.
Venables: It was a very dry match to be honest. Howard definitely saved us out there today; he was simply outstanding. We have to up our level of performances from here on out. The derby is up next and we cannot afford any slip ups in that one.

Hopeless Everton Crushed in Derby
Liverpool 5 – 0 Everton
The Merseyside Derby was played this weekend with Liverpool hosting their rivals Everton in what was sure to be a fiercely competitive fixture. However, it turned out to be quite the opposite. Liverpool’s Fernando Torres opened up the match with a blistering run and capped it off with the first goal of the day. Again Torres popped up ten minutes later with a cool finish off of a Milan Jovanovic cross to make it 2 – 0. Right before half time, Christian Poulsen added a third for Liverpool as they went into half time as dominant as ever.
The second half was no different to the visitors, as Torres completed his hat-trick on 66 minutes, before the scoring would end with Daniel Agger’s header on the end of a Joe Cole corner, leaving the final score at 5 – 0 to Liverpool.
Venables: I’m furious. I was absolutely devastated to see that kind of performance. When you look at the stats and see that you had 3 shots all match, while your opponents had 18, you’re speechless. Shocking performance it was, and we are not going to get anywhere in the league with this kind of form. We must improve.

Honours at Goodison Park
Everton 0 – 0 Wolves
Everton hosted Wolves this weekend as the Toffees looked to bounce back on a dismal run of form. Both halves were simply equal in terms of shots and attacking movements, and the defences of both teams cancelled each other out. It comes as no surprise given the current form and the performance of both teams that this one finished goal less, which is seen as no more than either side deserved.
Venables: Again, it was not that good of a performance, but we did not lose. We need to get the striking potential to show on the pitch, because the goals are not flowing and we really do need all attacking players to step it up.

Monthly Round-Up
With November at an end, Manchester United are the team at the top of the table with 39 points from 15 games. Blackpool, West Brom and Wigan are the three teams sitting in the relegation zone, though the battle for survival is pretty open through the bottom half of the table. Player of the Month goes to Liverpool’s Fernando Torres, who has scored 7 goals in 5 appearances. Young Player of the Month finds its way to Bolton’s James Tomkins, and Goal of the Month is awarded to Blackpool’s Marlon Harewood for his scintillating run through against the Tottenham defence, ending with a cool finish past Gomes. Manager of the Month goes to Sir Alex Ferguson, as he saw his side beat Fulham, Stoke, Liverpool and Birmingham, as well as drawing with Wigan, all while only conceding one goal and scoring 15.

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Saha Comes Back to Haunt Sir Alex
Man Utd 1 – 2 Everton

Saha (2)​
Everton progressed to the semi-final of the League Cup this past Wednesday night when they beat Manchester United at Old Trafford. United made a great start to the game, with Brazilian midfielder Anderson striking from outside the box to make it 1 – 0 to the hosts. Louis Saha then popped up behind the United defence to level it for the Blues right on half time.
In the second half, United were the team banked on to score, however the former United goalkeeper Tim Howard stood strong from all angles as he kept the scores level. On the 70th minute, it was Louis Saha again who leaped above Chris Smalling to get on the end of Bilyaletdinov’s cross and score the winning goal in a thrilling Quarter Final.
Venables: I’m delighted with Saha’s return tonight. It was a great feeling to see us win finally after our recent form, especially winning at Old Trafford of all places. We’re through to the semi finals now so hopefully we can play like we did tonight over and over again and the cup will be ours. Next up is Chelsea on Saturday, so we’ll have to wait and see what kind of Everton team arrives for that match.

Blues in Good Show against Chelsea
Chelsea 1 – 0 Everton
Everton were looking good despite falling to a 0 – 1 loss at Stamford Bridge just a couple days after winning at Old Trafford. Frank Lampard scored the only goal of the match in the opening fifteen minutes, however Everton were the more dominant of the two sides throughout the rest of the half.
Into the second half it was Everton pushing for the equalizer, with Saha striking the post twice in a matter of minutes. Steven Pienaar had a long range effort tipped around the post, and Tim Cahill’s numerous aerial leaps were not enough as the Toffees went back to Merseyside defeated.
Venables: Despite losing, I was proud of that performance. Week in, week out, there’s not many teams that challenge Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. I think that even Carlo and the die-hard supporters of Chelsea are feeling lucky with that win, as we definitely deserved something from the match.

Vermaelen Throws Points Away
Everton 1 – 1 Arsenal
Vermaelen (OG)​
A point each is all that became of Arsenal’s visit to Goodison Park this past week, as their own defender was to blame for not taking the three points back to London. The first half of the match was drab, with shots here and there, but to no avail.
In the second half, Robin Van Persie’s bullet cross found its way to Everton defender Tony Hibbert’s head and from there into the back of the net. Needless to say, Hibbert was left red faced as the Gunners celebrated a 1 – 0 lead with half an hour to go. Nearing the end of the match, Bilyaletdinov’s corner found Vermaelen who gifted Everton a point in a match they arguably could have won.
Venables: Our performances have definitely improved and the match today shows how we should be higher up than we actually are right now. It was unlucky for Hibbo to score that one, but seeing Vermaelen do the same was pretty pleasing.

Venables Looking for Talent in January

Everton manager Gregg Venables has admitted that it is time to seek out players in the January transfer window, specifically someone to head his lacklustre attack. “I’ve been looking at a few players for different positions across the attacking line,” said Venables. “In truth, I think we need a new striker. My main target is Yannis Tafer from Lyon. He can play all he wants for Lyon right now, but come January, he is my number one.
“A couple others come into the mix as well, like Lyon’s other young striker Ishak Belfodil, and even Jozy Altidore. We are working towards a deal for Landon Donovan, so having him and Jozy Altidore would be a huge asset to the club.”
Speculation will gradually mount on the impending deals that could see the likes of Yakubu be shown the door as Venables tidies up his strike force. Along with the January news, contract agreements have been reached with three players at Everton. Steven Pienaar has reached a deal which will keep him at Goodison Park until 2014, while James Vaughan and Victor Anichebe have signed a new four year deal, seeing them stay until 2015.

Everton Record First Win in Seven
Blackburn 0 – 1 Everton

The Toffees were in action this weekend as they travelled to Ewood Park in their latest effort to get back on track in the Premier League. Everton made a bright start to the game, with Louis Saha being denied by Paul Robinson numerous times before he was brought down in the area by Vincenzo Grella. Of all the Everton players willing, defender Phil Jagielka stepped up to the spot and slotted home to give the visitors the lead.
Out in the second half, Everton were as dominant as ever, with Bilyaletdinov denied a goal by the woodwork, as well as a thunderous shot from Leon Osman fizzing just wide of the net. Striker Louis Saha had to be substituted in the 70th minute due to injury, with Jermaine Beckford the man who replaced him. Nearing the 90th, Beckford went on a blistering run into the box, only to have his shot saved luckily by Paul Robinson. The final score at Ewood Park was 1 – 0 to Everton as they recorded their first win in seven league matches.
Venables: It’s great to finally get a win in the bag. Now we need to push this forward and get back on a comfortable consistent streak if we want to be up there for European places. I can confirm that Louis Saha will miss the next three weeks through injury, taking us right up into the New Year.

Heitinga Bags First Club Goal in Everton Win
Everton 2 – 0 West Ham
Heitinga, Cahill​
A vintage display from Everton ensured a priceless three points as the Blues defeated West Ham at Goodison Park. Jonny Heitinga bagged his first Everton goal from a corner delivered by Steven Pienaar to put the hosts up 1 – 0. West Ham were pinned back for the better part of the first half, although they did get forward at some points, with Scott Parker having a deflected shot narrowly saved by Tim Howard.
After the break, Everton were given a penalty as Valon Behrami handballed a Seamus Coleman cross, which allowed Tim Cahill to step up and increase the lead to two. Everton had most of the possession in the second half, but nearly through away a two goal advantage when Carlton Cole seized on a back pass by Belgian international Marouane Fellaini, but his shot was stopped by the on form Tim Howard to end the match.
Venables: That was definitely a comfortable win for us. I am delighted for Heitinga and his first goal, it really is something special to get a first goal, especially in front of your club’s fans. We’ve been looking better recently, and I was pleased with Beckford’s performance despite him not scoring, he was looking good in the attacking areas.

Beckford on Form in Narrow Win
Blackpool 1 – 2 Everton

Beckford, Pienaar​
In their last match of 2010, Everton travelled to Bloomfield Road to take on Blackpool as they looked to end the year on a high note. It took all of twenty minutes for the scoring to open as Jermaine Beckford’s parried shot found its way back to him as he finished it with a cool chipped shot to put Everton up 1 – 0.
Into the second half, another Beckford shot was parried, this time into the path of South African winger Steven Pienaar as he made it 2 – 0 to the visitors. A few attacking moves later and Elliot Grandin’s cross found the head of Marlon Harewood as he gave the home fans something to cheer about, though they could do nothing else as the match ended at 2 – 1 to Everton.
Venables: Another good win for us. We lost last time out against Blackpool, so to come here and win is a good way to end the year. Beckford finally scored so that’s a good note. Now we look onto January and see what happens.

Monthly Round-Up
Moving into January, the December Player of the Month goes to Sunderland’s Darren Bent, who scored five goals in four games in the past month. Young Player of the Month is awarded to Sunderland’s Jordan Henderson, and Goal of the Month is given to Birmingham’s on-loan striker Roque Santa Cruz’s goal against Newcastle as he curls his shot beautifully into the back of the net from 25 yards out. Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has claimed Manager of the Month following an unbeaten run of games with a draw against Manchester United in the derby, followed by successive wins against Newcastle, West Brom, Arsenal, Fulham and Tottenham.
January Update


Bolton Hold Blues at Goodison
Everton 0 – 0 Bolton
Bolton fans will be going home relieved after their New Years Day clash with Everton ended in a draw. Neither team could capitalise on any chances, though it must be said that Everton looked the most likely to score. The first half saw numerous saves pulled off by Bolton’s Jussi Jaaskelainen to keep the score level. Tim Cahill had a few headers and struck the post twice before the half time whistle.
Jermaine Beckford was denied by Jaaskelainen straight from the kick-off in the second half. The Grenadian international was later substituted as Victor Anichebe made his first appearance since his injury that kept him out for the first half of the season. However, not even Anichebe could beat Man of the Match winner Jussi Jaaskelainen as the match ended 0 – 0.
Venables: I must say, if it as anyone but Jaaskelainen out there today, we would have three points right now. We’re sitting in 8th right now, only 6 points off of fifth. I just hope we can get back into winning fashion and move up the table for that European spot.

Yakubu on the Move

Everton’s Nigerian international Yakubu is set to secure a deal which will see him move to Spanish side Atletico Madrid in a £3.7m transfer. Yakubu’s form since injury is admittedly not the best as his return has seen him bag 6 goals since coming back.
It is thought that the exit of the striker is part of team manager Venables’ plan to reshape the attacking force of his side by using the money for other targets.

Ireland Double Sinks Everton
Aston Villa 2 – 1 Everton
Stephen Ireland was in top form for Aston Villa in midweek as he helped his side to a 2 – 1 win over Everton. Ireland bagged his first goal in the 14th minute as he saw his shot deflected off of Phil Jagielka and into the back of the net. Right before halftime, Ireland got his second as he was on the end of a Gabby Agbonlahor cross to make it 2 – 0.
In the second half, Everton were the better side, and they pulled one back as Tim Cahill got on the end of a rebounded shot from James Vaughan and scored his 100th career league goal. However, Ireland’s first half brace was enough to make sure Villa bagged the three points, leaving Everton wondering what to do next.
Venables: Villa Park is always a tough place to come to. Ireland was really stunning today and fully deserved those goals. I’m pleased for Cahill on his 100th league goal, but overall the team performance was a lot less than what I wanted.

Youngsters Shine in 3rd Round Win
Leicester 0 – 3 Everton

Rodwell, Silva, Gueye​
With the departure of Yakubu to Atletico Madrid and Tim Cahill on international duty in the Asia Cup, Venables looked to his youngsters to guide Everton through to the next round of the F.A. Cup. Inside half an hour, Jack Rodwell made a bursting run into the box to get on the end of a Luke Garbutt cross to make it 1 – 0 to the visitors. Portuguese striker Joao Silva then made it 2 – 0 as he slid the ball into the back of the net.
In the second half, Magaye Gueye slotted home his first for the club to complete the scoring, leaving Leicester wondering where they went wrong.
Venables: Very good performance even with the absence of Cahill. Silva continues to impress me every time he plays. It’s a special day for Gueye too, with his first goal, and it was a good one, one of the better first goals I’ve ever seen!

Zavon Hines Moves to Merseyside

Everton have completed the capture of West Ham striker Zavon Hines for an eventual fee of £8 million. The former England youth striker has stated that he is pleased to have joined the Toffees.
His signing follows the departure of Nigerian striker Yakubu, as he completed a £3.7 million transfer from Everton to Atletico Madrid on January 1st.

Newcastle Triumph in First Leg
Newcastle 2 – 1 Everton
Everton travelled to St. James’ Park this weekend to face Newcastle in the first-leg of their League Cup semi-final tie. It took all of half an hour for Newcastle to break the deadlock, as Wayne Routledge popped up to side foot the ball past Tim Howard giving his team the lead going into the break.
After the restart, it was Newcastle again looking the better side, and were justly rewarded as Shola Ameobi made it 2 – 0. Ten minutes later, the Blues pulled one back to take home as Belgian international Marouane Fellaini climbed above everyone to nod home a Seamus Coleman cross making the final score 2 – 1 to Newcastle.
Venables: We definitely have to play better when we take it to Goodison. I’m thankful that we got that goal because without we might be in more of a bother than I’d like to be in when it comes to the second-leg.

United Held at Goodison Park
Everton 1 – 1 Man Utd
League contenders Manchester United go home with nothing more than a point after a focused Everton side held their visitors in midweek. The Blues were off to a flyer as Steven Pienaar took on three defenders to blast the ball into the back of the net, in the opening minute. However, United pressed on after going one down, and it was former Toffee Wayne Rooney who grabbed the equalizer after half an hour, sending the teams in level at half time.
In the second half, Everton were very much on the back foot, as attempts from Dimitar Berbatov and Wayne Rooney kept Tim Howard on his toes. Nearing the 70th minute, there was cause for concern for United as captain Nemanja Vidic picked up a second yellow card, reducing them to 10 men for the final 20 minutes. Despite being a man up, Everton never really looked threatening and could not capitalize on their chances, leaving the scores at 1 – 1.
Venables: Given some of our recent performances, it was certainly a better one. Pienaar did brilliantly for that goal and to be honest, I would have been surprised if we had been able to hold onto that lead the entire match. Rooney’s equalizer was an absolute bullet, and I did think we had what it took to win that game, especially when Vidic was sent off.

Baines to Miss League Cup Semi-Final
Everton’s Leighton Baines is set to miss his side’s League Cup semi-final second-leg match against Newcastle as he has suffered an ankle injury which rules him out for the rest of January.
Thankfully, Baines’ injury comes at a time when Venables has been giving young left-back Luke Garbutt a fair amount of playing time. Still, there is no doubt that the Toffees are going to miss the influence of Baines and will have to up their game in his absence.

Everton Complete Lafferty Signing

Northern Ireland winger Kyle Lafferty has penned a four year contract with Everton following a £1.2 million transfer from Scottish champions Rangers. Lafferty comes to an Everton side that is looking to improve on their current league position and launch themselves into the European places.
Lafferty, a former Burnley man, moved to Rangers at the start of the 2008/09 season, where he won the Scottish Premier League last season, before falling out of favour with the Rangers staff, thus moving to the Barclays Premier League with Everton. Lafferty will be available for selection straight away, and is expected to play some part in the Premiership clash with Newcastle this week.

Beckford Secures Point at St. James’ Park
Newcastle 1 – 1 Everton
Jermaine Beckford played the part of super-sub for Venables’ Everton as they faced Newcastle at St. James’ Park this weekend. Neither side could do anything with the goalmouth action before Newcastle finally got one in. Jonas Gutierrez was the man who’s cross somehow found its way into the Everton goal, putting the home side up 1 – 0.
Shortly after, James Vaughan was substituted for Jermaine Beckford, who cropped up for an equalizer for Everton on 70 minutes. The draw was no more than either side deserved, and both teams will be looking to head to Wembley as they face each other again in just three days’ time.
Venables: We certainly weren’t at our best today. I am just glad that we managed to come away with something there. St. James’ will always be a hard place to come and win at, and I would say the draw was just for both teams.

Everton Heading to Wembley
Everton 2agg – 0 Newcastle

Beckford (2)​
Everton are through and are going to Wembley as they beat Newcastle 3 – 2 on aggregate to secure their place in the League Cup Final. Jermaine Beckford scored his second goal in a row against Newcastle in the 12th minute, before new Everton signee Kyle Lafferty was given a straight red for a foul on Jonas.
Coming out into the second half, Venables’ side were feeling confident, and Mikel Arteta’s early pressure on the ball caused Joey Barton to give the ball away to the Spaniard, only for him to find Jermaine Beckford who put his side 2 – 0 up one minute after the restart. That was to be the final score as Everton put themselves through into the Final of the League Cup, where they will face Aston Villa.
Venables: It is delightful to know that we’re through to the Final. Beckford has been on top of his game lately, with three goals in two games in a row against Newcastle. All we have to do now is apply this performance to the league and to the Final and we’ll be on our way!

Everton Through Despite Resilient Peterborough
Everton 2 – 1 Peterborough
Osman, Jagielka​
Peterborough could have tripped Everton’s F.A. Cup run today if it had not have been for Man of the Match winner Phil Jagielka. The Toffees were looking good in the first half and were rewarded when midfielder Leon Osman hammered his side in front after half an hour, with the score at 1 – 0 going into the second half.
On 50 minutes, Peterborough captain Grant McCann scored a screamer past Slovakia international Jan Mucha to put his side level, giving them a belief that they could win the game. Young starlet Joao Silva managed to find the net, only to have his goal ruled out on account of offside on the Portuguese youngster. However, England centre-back Phil Jagielka was able to complete his fine game with the winning goal as he nodded in Steven Pienaar’s corner, leaving the score at 2 – 1 Everton.
Venables: Peterborough were definitely troublesome today. We couldn’t score as much as we would have liked, but I’ll take what I can get and at the end of the day, we’re through to the fifth round, and that’s all I see.

Monthly Round-Up
With January at a close, Tottenham’s goalkeeper Gomes has won Player of the Month. Young Player of the Month is awarded to Blackpool’s Craig Cathcart, and Goal of the Month goes to Manchester City’s Jefferson Farfan’s goal against Wigan earlier in the month. Manager of the Month is given to Roy Hodgson, as he has seen his Liverpool side defeat the likes of Birmingham, Manchester City, Sunderland and Wolves this month. Arguably the biggest transfer of the January window seems to be Manchester City’s capture of Uruguayan midfielder Cristian Rodriguez, who moved from Porto to Eastlands for a fee of £12.75million on transfer deadline day.
Good story but may i ask why u payed £8m for hines and signed lafferty as he ball locks in scotland never mind england
Good story but may i ask why u payed £8m for hines and signed lafferty as he ball locks in scotland never mind england

Ahaha I've had Hines before in other games and he was great so I figured I should buy him now. My strikers weren't really doing the jobs they're there for so with the Yak gone I thought I might as well. And Lafferty? I've just liked him as a player. I scouted him in the Champions League and he played pretty well, always consistent. He was transfer listed so the price I got him for is the one he was up for. He was rated at about 4mil so I would say it was a good buy.

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Search for Form Continues
Fulham 1 – 0 Everton
Fulham denied Everton the win that they have been looking for in the Premier League this week. Neither team could take the lead despite a number of chances, until Bobby Zamora put the ball past Tim Howard to make it 1 – 0 to the home side with half an hour left in the match.
It is fair to say that neither team really deserved to be emphatic winners in the match, but Fulham were the team to take good care of the important chance to score.
Venables: Again, we haven’t found our form, and I really hope we do soon. It’s been five games without a win now, and we cannot go on like this.

Poor Form Stretches Winless Run
Everton 1 – 1 West Brom
Everton’s lacklustre run of form continued this weekend as West Brom were the latest team to hold the Blues at Goodison Park. England Under-21’s captain Jack Rodwell put the home side in front with a cool finish from just inside the area, with the halftime score at 1 – 0 Everton.
Right on song with Everton’s form in the league, West Brom equalized through Peter Odemwingie on 75 minutes. Despite their best efforts, Everton could not muster another goal, leaving them at six games without a win in the Premier League.
Venables: We have to find form soon. Rodwell’s goal was good, and I am definitely not impressed with the way we handled Odemwingie’s goal. Either way, we have to focus on each game as it comes to us.

Saha Suffers Fresh Injury

French striker Louis Saha has been ruled out for 2 to 3 months following a torn hamstring suffered during training. The 32 year old has suffered numerous injuries this season, causing him to have appeared for Everton no more than 9 times, scoring three goals. With the injury, Saha will be forced to watch his side from the stands as they take on Aston Villa in the League Cup Final at Wembley stadium in a few weeks time.

6 Goal Triumph for Everton
Everton 6 – 0 Bristol Rovers

Anichebe, Osman, Vaughan, Jagielka (2), Pienaar​
Everton were in scintillating form this weekend as they hosted Bristol Rovers in the F.A. Cup 5th Round tie. Victor Anichebe started the scoring following a blistering run through the middle of the pitch. Leon Osman then added a second right on halftime, sending the home side in with a comfortable 2 – 0 lead.
In the second half, James Vaughan got on the end of a Seamus Coleman cross to add a third, before Phil Jagielka nodded in a Steven Pienaar corner not once, but twice, making it 5 – 0 with less than ten minutes to play. South African international Steven Pienaar then grabbed himself a goal as Everton progressed to the 6th Round following a 6 – 0 win over Bristol.
Venables: That is the kind of performance that I would love to see day in, day out. Everyone played well today, and it shouldn’t have to be seen against a League One side. Instead, the fans should see that kind of performance against teams in our league.

Coleman Bags First Everton Goal
Stoke 0 – 1 Everton

Young Irish winger Seamus Coleman scored his first goal for Everton in the 1 – 0 win at Stoke this week. Coleman made a blistering run right on halftime, skinning two defenders to then cut inside and slide the ball past Asmir Begovic. The winger’s goal was the only one in a game where either side could have come out as winners, if it weren’t for some poor finishing.
Venables: I am disappointed that we didn’t win by a bigger margin, but Seamus’ goal was special and he thoroughly deserved it. He’s been one of our most consistent players this season, setting numerous goals and getting into the right positions to score.

Pienaar and Cahill to Miss League Cup Final
South African midfielder Steven Pienaar and Australian international Tim Cahill are set to miss out on the trip to Wembley this upcoming week. Both players have been ruled out for a minimum of two weeks following injuries sustained in the 1 – 0 win at Stoke in midweek.
Pienaar suffered a thigh strain as a result of a hefty tackle by Stoke defender Ryan Shawcross, while Cahill is forced to sit out following a damaged elbow after climbing for a header and clashing with Dean Whitehead.

Everton Win Secures Europe
Everton 3 – 0 Aston Villa

Vaughan, Rodwell, Anichebe​
Everton successfully qualify for European competition next season after they beat Aston Villa 3 – 0 at Wembley in the League Cup Final. James Vaughan opened the scoring for the Toffees after twenty minutes with his close-ranged finish following a neatly constructed attacking move. Right on halftime, England Under-21’s captain Jack Rodwell hit a bullet into the top corner of the net, giving Everton a 2 – 0 lead going into the break.
Captain Phil Neville never returned after the break as Tony Hibbert took his place, with many speculating that it was a ploy to keep players fit for the match against Tottenham in midweek. Nearing the end of the match, substitute Victor Anichebe climbed above Richard Dunne to head in the third goal, making Everton the 2010 League Cup Champions.
Venables: I couldn’t be more proud of that performance. All the goals were well worked and we’re champions! The strength of the team despite Cahill and Pienaar is pleasing to see and now we can focus on the F.A. Cup and the league.

With February over, Liverpool’s Fernando Torres scoops Player of the Month following an impressive six goals in four games. Young Player of the Month goes to Arsenal’s new signing Toby Alderweireld who joined the club from Ajax for £10m in January. Everton’s Jack Rodwell claims Goal of the Month for his brilliant finish which capped off a scintillating run against West Brom. Finally, Manager of the Month is awarded to Manchester City’s Roberto Mancini, who has seen his side beat Sunderland, Blackpool and Chelsea this month, while managing a draw against Wolves. In cup news, Everton became the first English team to qualify for European competition this month as they beat Aston Villa in the League Cup Final.

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Tottenham Held at Goodison
Everton 1 – 1 Tottenham
Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp was unable to see his side give him a win on his birthday as they travelled to Merseyside in midweek to take on League Cup winners Everton. Phil Jagielka got the home side off to a flyer as he headed Mikel Arteta’s corner into the net after just three minutes. On 37 minutes, however, Russian striker Roman Pavlyuchenko levelled the scores at 1 – 1 with a well timed finish.
The second half saw many chances, but no goals as both sides ended up coming out with a point a piece.
Venables: I must say, I half expected a win tonight after the performance against Aston Villa at Wembley. Still, a point against Tottenham isn’t bad. They’re a side that is pushing to regain that Champions League spot and they have been in good form recently. We’ve got the derby this weekend and I’m hoping that our season has picked up after that cup final.

Everton Finishing Ensures Derby Win
Everton 4 – 0 Liverpool

Bilyaletdinov, Hines, Jagielka, Anichebe​
Everton fans were singing as loud as they have done all season after a delightful 4 – 0 victory over Merseyside rivals Liverpool this weekend. Winger Diniyar Bilyaletdinov scored the first goal of the match after a half an hour of play before surprise derby day choice Zavon Hines doubled the lead just minutes after. Right before halftime, defender Phil Jagielka scored his second goal in two games after a great leap and stunning header on the end of Bilyaletdinov’s in-swinging corner to make it 3 – 0 going into halftime.
After the restart, it was much of the same, with Everton being the team creating the most chances, though they could not finish them. Striker James Vaughan had to be substituted through injury paving the way for Victor Anichebe to come on. The 22 Nigerian managed to bag himself a goal in stoppage time just to add to Liverpool’s woes. Following Everton’s win, the Toffees sit in 8th position in league on 43 points, while their neighbours Liverpool missed the opportunity to go top of the table, where they are still 2nd, two points off the top.
Venables: Oh it was a great win today. Everyone played great and the goals were fantastic. It sort of makes up for the last derby where we lost 5 – 0 at Anfield, and to win today and deny them the top of the table is a good aspect to look at.

Poor Finishing Costs Everton at Bolton
Bolton 2 – 0 Everton
Everton have crashed out of the F.A. Cup this weekend after a visit to Bolton proved too much for them to handle. Coming off the back of a 4 – 0 thrashing to rivals Liverpool, Everton made a horrid start to the game when Ivan Klasnic blasted a great free-kick past Tim Howard after just five minutes. The home side managed to press on with the scoring as Johan Elmander slotted the ball home with Bolton advancing to the Quarter Finals as 2 – 0 winners against the Toffees.
Venables: I was a bit surprised with that one. I think we were favourites for that one, but we just couldn’t find the net. Looking at that, you wouldn’t think that we just beat Liverpool 4 – 0 in our last match, but we did. I am definitely not happy with going out of the F.A. Cup, but that is football and we have to pick ourselves up and focus elsewhere.

Beckford Shines at DW Stadium
Wigan 0 – 3 Everton

Beckford (3)​
Jermaine Beckford was in clinical form today as Everton went to Wigan with intent to rack up the points. The Grenadian international got the only goal of a dry first half in the 24th minute as he capitalized on a mix-up between Chris Kirkland and his defenders, making it 1 – 0 to the visitors going into the second half.
Right off the restart, Beckford again cropped up with a simple tap in from Steven Pienaar’s low cross to make it 2 – 0. When the third goal rolled around, it had to be Beckford to complete his hat-trick in style as he beat three defenders and the goalkeeper to end the match at 3 – 0 to Everton.
Venables: Beckford was outstanding right now. I am very pleased with the way he has settled into the Premier League. He’s got 10 goals in 16 starts for us, that is a pretty good return if you ask me. We’re sixth right now in the league. Yeah, you know, we’ve already got Europe, but if we keep winning in the league, the top four aren’t that far off.

Coming to the end of March, Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney claims Player of the Month, while Young Player of the Month goes to Everton midfielder Jack Rodwell. Goal of the Month is awarded to Chelsea’s Frank Lampard for his goal against Sunderland, and Blackburn boss Alan Shearer gets Manager of the Month with wins against Birmingham and a shock win against Manchester City.
Looking at the league table it is Liverpool who sit at the top on 68 points, with Manchester City right behind on 67. At the other end of the table it is Wigan, Newcastle and Blackpool who seem destined for the drop, with Wigan being the closest team to saving themselves, yet still five points off achieving survival.


Everton Rue Chances in 6 Goal Draw
Everton 3 – 3 Birmingham

Cahill (2), Vaughan​
Everton will be disappointed with their missed chances to score today as Birmingham managed a superb draw with three goals on either side. Australian international Tim Cahill got the home side off to a good start as he headed the ball into the back of the net after ten minutes. Right on halftime Craig Garnder’s superb run caused havoc in the defence before he slipped the ball back to on-loan striker Roque Santa Cruz to level the scores.
In the second half, Everton were looking dominant, which paid off when Tim Cahill again popped up, this time to hammer in a shot from just outside the box, making it 2 – 1 to the home side. Five minutes later, Serbian striker Nikola Zigic took a chance from 30 yards out, and it paid off as the ball flew right into the top corner of net, making it 2 – 2. Nearing the 80th minute, substitute James Vaughan managed to crop up and slide a cross from Seamus Coleman into the back of the net, giving Everton the lead with only ten minutes left. The lead was short lived, however, when Nikola Zigic again levelled it with a powerful header two minutes from time, making the final score 3 – 3.
Venables: How we managed to throw away a leading position three times is beyond me. I thought that when Vaughan scored that goal, that was the three points in the bag. Our defending was below par and we have to be a lot more consistent in that sense if we want the Champions League places.

City Held at Eastlands
Man City 0 – 0 Everton
Everton travelled to the City of Manchester stadium this weekend as underdogs in what could have been a crunch match for Manchester City’s title hopes. Though the home side were the more dominant in the first half, they could not find a breakthrough as the combination of Tim Howard’s superb reflexes and the brilliant defensive measures of Phil Jagielka thwarted many attacks heading towards the Everton goal.
In the second half, Everton were looking a lot sharper and got themselves in a few positions to score, only to see the likes of Tim Cahill and James Vaughan denied goals by England’s number one, Joe Hart. Steven Pienaar had to be substituted nearing the 80th minute through injury, though early reports suggest it is just minor. Victor Anichebe and Jermaine Beckford replaced James Vaughan and Tim Cahill respectively, though neither could score, leaving the scores at 0 – 0.
Venables: I don’t really know what to make of that one. We played well and maybe deserved a goal, but then again, so did they. At the end of the day it is another point, and I’m sure the fans will feel the same way I do as in this: we don’t want City winning the title, so a point at their place is good. Then again, we don’t want Liverpool winning the title, so a point is also a bad thing in that sense.

Bilyaletdinov to Miss Chelsea and Arsenal Games
Everton’s Diniyar Bilyaletdinov has been ruled out for at least four weeks following a strained ankle ligament injury suffered in training this week. With the injury, he is sure to miss the home match against Chelsea in a couple weeks time, as well as the trip to Arsenal following that.
The Russian winger has been in good form for the Toffees recently, helping his side improve on the league position which saw them teetering just below the top half of the table before Christmas, though they are now pushing for European places in the table.

Everton Secure Priceless Win
Everton 1 – 0 Sunderland

Sunderland travelled to Goodison Park this weekend where they faced an Everton side currently flourishing with an unbeaten streak of seven games up to this clash. Neither side could take the lead in a drab match until the 67th minute when substitute Marouane Fellaini latched onto Zavon Hines’ misplaced pass and stroked the ball beautifully past Craig Gordon to score the only goal in the match.
With the win, Everton are riding an eight game unbeaten streak in the Premier League, with an upcoming trip away to relegation candidates Wolves, and then at home to a struggling Chelsea.
Venables: Well, it certainly wasn’t the most exciting match, but I am pleased we were able to win it. Fellaini did really well to get on the end of that ball and the finish was sublime. We’ve got Wolves then Chelsea coming up, so to win again is a momentum boost to the players as we face some top teams.

Last Gasp Goal Thwarts Everton Win
Wolves 2 – 2 Everton
Baines, Fellaini​
An injury-time goal denied Everton another three points as they visited Molyneux to take on over-achievers Wolves this weekend. Wolves striker Kevin Doyle managed to put the home side ahead with a close-range header after 15 minutes, however England international Leighton Baines scored a brilliant free-kick from 25 yards out to make the scores level going into the second half.
Right after the restart, Baines’ corner found the head of Marouane Fellaini who bagged his second goal in as many games, with Everton up 2 – 1. In the third of four minutes of added time, Welsh midfielder Dave Jones made the most of a miscommunication between Phil Jagielka and goalkeeper Tim Howard by picking up a loose ball and sliding it under the American goalkeeper to secure a point for the home side.
Venables: That was disgraceful the way we conceded that goal. So late, too, that it could definitely have been avoided. We’ve just got to keep marching on, I guess, but it is known to the players that I am not happy with that one at all.

Howard Man of the Match in Chelsea Win
Everton 1 – 0 Chelsea

America’s number one goalkeeper Tim Howard claimed the Man of the match award today after keeping a valuable clean sheet after the constant barrage of shots from Chelsea. Everton’s Tim Cahill scored the only goal of the match, coming in the 20th minute with a powerful shot from just inside the box. The end of the match statistics showed that Chelsea had 21 shots on goal, but could not convert any into a goal, while their opponents had only 4 shots, making the one count.
Venables: It feels good to beat Chelsea, definitely. We were outshot for sure but it’s all about putting the chances away, and that’s what we did with that goal. Four shots, just one goal, I’d say we were lucky in that respect. Congratulations go out to the team, and now we take that and go to Arsenal next week.

With April at an end, Player of the Month is given to Liverpool’s Steven Gerrard who has scored five goals in four appearances this month. Young Player of the Month goes toTottenham’s Gareth Bale, and Goal of the Month is awarded to Florin Soava for his screamer goal for Wigan against West Brom. Manager of the Month rightly goes to Liverpool’s Roy Hodgson who has seen his side defeat Aston Villa, Manchester United, Newcastle and West Brom, outscoring their opponents 13 – 2 this month.
At the top of the table, only six points separates league leaders Liverpool from second and third placed teams Manchester United and Manchester City, respectively. Confirmed for the drop already are Wigan and Blackpool, with Newcastle the other team in the drop zone, though they do still have an outside chance of saving themselves, being seven points away from 17th place.


Arsenal Sink Toffees
Arsenal 3 – 0 Everton
Everton recorded their first loss in nine games this past weekend as they travelled to Emirates Stadium to take on an Arsenal with the Champions League in their sights. Russian midfielder Andrey Arshavin got the home side off to a flyer with a swift finish on the end of a Samir Nasri cross inside five minutes. Everton could muster barely anything, with just three shots in the half, and none of them on target.
In the second half, Nicklas Bendtner managed to double Arsenal’s lead on the hour mark with a close-range header following a neat attacking move constructed by substitute Robin Van Persie. Everton could very easily have been given a penalty as the match neared fulltime, but their claims were turned down. Minutes later, Arshavin went on a blistering run from the halfway line and finished it with a shot that slid just under goalkeeper Tim Howard, ending the match at 3 – 0 Arsenal.
Venables: A lot went wrong out there today. To be fair, they did a great job of closing our players down and their possession play was top class, as always.

Everton Lose in Lacklustre Performance
Everton 0 – 1 Blackburn
Entering into the 37th match of their season, Everton had lost just one of their last nine, and were tipped to bounce back after the defeat at Arsenal last weekend. In what was a dominant match for Blackburn, with the statistics of possession, shots, corners and, most importantly, goals going in their favour, the visitors finally got the goal they deserved in the 83rd minute. Brett Emerton managed to get on the end of a rebounded shot from Nikola Kalinic to make it 1 – 0 with less than ten minutes to play. Everton could do little to equalize, giving them another loss, dropping down to 8th position in the league.
Venables: Terrible performance today. No one did nearly enough to deserve to even lose just by one goal. Blackburn deserved more out there. They were most definitely the better side. They should feel like they lucked out a little there because it should have been at least 3 – 0.

Season Ends with Draw
West Ham 0 – 0 Everton
In what is the final league match of the season, Everton travelled to Upton Park to take on West Ham looking to end the season on a good note. Although there were a number of chances, neither side could take the lead through the 90, leaving it at 0 – 0 to end the season.
Venables: We didn’t lose, that is the main thing. Then again, I did want a win just for the fans. We’ve had Europe secure since March through the League Cup, but I definitely thought that a top four spot wasn’t too far off. Either way, now we have next season to focus on, and I’m pretty pleased with the way this one has gone.

With the 2010/11 Premiership season at a close, Footballer of the Year has gone to Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney as he scored 31 goals in 35 games, while setting up another nine for his team. Arsenal’s Andrey Arshavin has won Players’ Player of the Year, being somewhat of a provider for a lot of his team’s goals, setting up 13 and scoring 10 himself. Fernando Torres claims Top Goalscorer as he helped Liverpool to the title with 34 goals in 36 appearances. Aston Villa’s Stephen Ireland has been named as Players’ Young Player of the Year for his influential displays for his team, and Goal of the Season goes to Manchester City’s Jefferson Farfan’s wonderful individual goal against Wigan back in January. Roy Hodgson has duly won Manager of the Year for the second time running after guiding Liverpool to the Premiership title.
In terms of how the league table looked at the end of it all, Liverpool finished in the top spot, with Manchester United and Manchester City a mere five points behind. Wigan, Newcastle and Blackpool are all relegated, with the highest team of the three, being Wigan, seven points away from safety.
Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City and Arsenal all qualify for the Champions League following their respective league positions. Tottenham claimed 5th spot, qualifying them for the Europa League, while Chelsea also qualified for Europa through the F.A. Cup, and Everton the same with the League Cup.
where did you come in the league

I finished 7th, right behind Chelsea and Tottenham. Not too bad, but not what I really hoped for.

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Everton proved to be one of the busier teams in the first part of the summer transfer window, bringing in six new players so far, spending a total of £9.5M to do so. The list of completed incoming transfers follows:
6.9.2011 – Scott Loach (GK/Watford) £2.5M
6.29.2011 – Stanley Okoro (ST/Almeria) £3.7M
6.30.2011 – Francis Kargbo (GK/Burnley) £975K
6.30.2011 – Darren Baldwin (ST/Derby) £1.9M
7.1.2011 – Kyle Bartley (DC/Arsenal) Free
7.8.2011 – Yannis Tafer (ST/Lyon) Loan Fee £350K *option to buy £6.75M

As well as the incoming transfers, there are also a number of players that have moved on from the club:
6.9.2011 – Louis Saha to Aston Villa, £500K
6.10.2011 – Jan Mucha to Middlesbrough, £2M
6.27.2011 – Magaye Gueye to Nottingham Forest, Loan
6.30.2011 – Hope Akpan, Free
7.1.2011 – Kieran Agard to Stevenage, Free
7.1.2011 – Iain Turner to Celtic, Free
7.1.2011 – Nathan Craig to Darlington, Free
7.3.2011 – James Vaughan to Newcastle, Loan