FA CARLING PREMIERSHIP
SATURDAY 15TH JANUARY, 2000
EVERTON 2 (1) TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 2 (2)
Referee:- A. Wiley
Everton (4-4-2):- Gerrard; Dunne, Weir, Watson, Unsworth ( sub Ball, 82); Barmby, Hutchison, Collins, Pembridge; Jeffers ( sub, Moore, 82), Campbell
Subs not used:- Simonsen; Gemmill, Ward
Booked:- Barmby, Hutchinson, Watson
Spurs (4-4-2):- Walker; Carr, Perry, Campbell, Edinburgh ( sub Young, 82); Anderton, Sherwood, Clemence, Ginola ( sub Nielsen, 68); Armstrong, Iversen
Subs not used:- Baardsen; Korsten, Fox
Booked:- Edinburgh, Sherwood, Clemence, Nielsen
For the second time in a week, Spurs conceded a late goal, and had their points tally dented. This time it was an injury time equaliser, and not a losing goal, but still, three points have fallen by the wayside, and qualification for Europe is looking a more remote possibility on this evidence. Apart from a four minute frenzy of goalscoring in the first half, this was a gritty encounter, and in the second half, it was a backs to the wall defending job for the visitors. Once again, Graham removed Ginola, presumably to shore up the defence, and once again this move resulted in more constant pressure for the defenders, with the main attacking foil removed.
Everton started the brighter of the two sides, with Dunne, cumbersome in appearance, getting forward to good effect, supplementing the skill of Hutchinson and Collins in midfield, and supplying Jeffers and Campbell in attack. Perry was having trouble dealing with the strength of Campbell in particular. Jeffers had an early header go over the bar, from a Dunne cross, and then caused some panic with a cross/shot across the goalmouth.
Only a few minutes had passed when the game was interrupted by a stray stocky looking mongrel, that had an extended stay on the pitch to the delight of both sets of fans. The dog got big cheers when rounding Walker twice, and the Spurs fans chanted "Who, Who, Who let the dog out!". The dog even made an encore before finally being rounded up and despatched.
Spurs got their attacking act together after 10 minutes, when Sol Campbell just failed to make contact with a floated Anderton free kick from the left. There was some more goalmouth action from Spurs, with Iversen forcing a defensive block, before Collins fired a long shot wide. After 22 minutes, Hutchinson made a break out of midfield, and made an incisive cross from the right, which Kevin Campbell headed home, easily shaking off Perry.
Only 90 seconds later, Spurs were level. Sherwood curled a free kick to the left side of the goal; Campbell headed goalward, and Armstrong was on hand to finish off as the ball rebounded off a post. I thought Gerrard got a touch too, but I haven't been able to check the TV pictures. Everton responded well, and Dune headed down Jeffers' cross, but was blocked in front of goal.
Then after 28 minutes, Ginola put Spurs in the lead, with what looked like a beautiful chip of the goalkeeper from my angle. I understand that his shot took a wicked deflection off Watson ( covering for Gough), but the Spurs fans were ecstatic, and the home support was silenced, and started to turn against their team, and every decision by the officials. Carr took a free kick quickly, and Anderton on the right passed inside to Ginola on the right hand side of the penalty area. From here he sent his effort over the helpless Gerrard.
Armstrong had a half chance to increase the lead, when he beat Gerrard in a challenge for a Walker clearance, but he was blocked just as he was about to shoot. There was a period of consistent good play by Spurs, and just before half time, Sherwood put Iversen through for Gerrard to make a double save from Steffen.
The referee had resisted the temptation to book anyone until Barmby became his first capture just before the interval for a challenge on Sherwood. In the second half he made up for lost time, by adding another 6 names to his list, as the game became more scrappy. Sherwood got his eighth booking and must be due another suspension. He got booked for dissent against a decision to penalise a Clemence challenge.
Kevin Keegan was at Goodison today, and rumour has it he was there to watch Barmby, amongst others. Barmby made a busy start to the second half, working both sides of the park.He crossed from the right for Hutchison, whose header was saved, and also caused some worry with a cross in front of the goal from the left. Walker had little to do in the way of saving shots on target, but he was busy, and played well as far as collecting crosses was concerned. In golfing terms, he needs to use a 5 or 6 iron with his kicks sometimes, as too often, clearances simply went straight to Gerrard, or a defender.
Spurs had few decent attacks in the second half. An early Anderton free kick from the left was glanced on by Sherwood, but comfortably into Gerrard's hands. At the other end, a good degree of pressure led to few direct chances, but Dunne again getting forward managed a shot into the side netting. Perry was managing Campbell more effectively in the second half, although the ex-Arsenal man did make a good turn in the box, to force a save from Walker with 20 minutes to go.
Spurs one decent chance after the substitution of Ginola came when Iversen made a penetrating run, and instead of trying a shot himself, passed back to Nielsen in a less promising position. The Dane's shot was deflected for a corner, from which Iversen headed wide. Anderton curled a long free kick round the far post, with Gerrard beaten. With 10 minutes left, Sherwood took a quick free kick, and found Iversen, who headed into the arms of the goalkeeper.
The bookings flourished, and the pressure against Spurs mounted. We had sung "Cheerio" to the departing home fans, and were surprised at the addition of 4 minutes injury time. ( There had already been time added on at the end of the first half). As the seconds ticked away, Pembridge deceived the defence with a very long throw, and USA International Joe Max Moore was the one who slotted home from 6 yards to maintain Everton's unbeaten home league record.
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