Sunday, 30 September 2012

David Moyes Refuses To Put A Cap On Everton's Ambitions

Nikica Jelavic double ensured Everton recovered from their midweek dose of Capital punishment in style.
The Toffees spent the days leading up to this game in the dog house following their Capital One Cup humiliation at Leeds.

And listening to David Moyes bark out orders on the training pitch certainly had the right affect.

Having gifted Saints a sloppy goal in the opening minutes, they dominated the game and won 3-1 to put a smile back on Moyes’ face.

Moyes said: “We played ever so well at times but it took 15 minutes to get going and there was a hangover from the result in midweek.

“The players deserved credit for going about their job and in the end we really could have scored more.’’

It looked like it could be a shaky day for Everton when 
Gaston Ramirez netted after just six minutes. Adam Lallana dropped a corner deep into Everton’s box and the Uruguay star, unmarked six yards out, seemed almost embarrassed to score his first goal for Saints in such an easy manner.

Saints spurned a glorious chance to net a second. Jay Rodriguez latched on to Frazer Richardson’s ball down the line, but feebly sent his shot wide.
 
Finally, though, the Toffees got a grip on the game. Kevin Mirallas made the most of the space down the right and fired a low ball into the area.

Jelavic was crowded out, but Leon Osman followed up to bang the ball past the exposed Paulo Gazzaniga.

It was not long before Gazzaniga was beaten again. Marouane Fellaini ensured Mirallas was able to continue 
his run from deep with a smart return pass, and he found Jelavic in space.

The Croat looked up to find keeper Gazzaniga had got his positioning all wrong and rolled the ball home.

Gazzaniga brilliantly gloved away a Jelavic header that seemed destined for the top corner. 

But Jelavic beat him seconds later to give Everton a two-goal advantage.

Seamus Coleman raided down the right and found his striker free at the far post with time to nod past the keeper’s despairing attempt to claw the ball to safety.

Everton had their prey just where they wanted them and memories of the 7-1 thrashing of 1996 were flooding back.

Fellaini again tested Gazzaniga with a shot from distance that the keeper touched away athletically.

Then Mirallas was denied a well-deserved goal by the huge frame of the visiting number one.

But with 22 minutes left, Saints suddenly came alive. Ramirez was put through on goal by Rickie Lambert and lifted the ball over Tim Howard.

It bounced once and rolled just wide. Panic over, what there was of it, and Everton were never going to lose this game.

Even a powerful Lambert header, saved by Howard, failed to stop them deservedly jumping into second place for a while. 

The question is how long can they stay in the top four?

For Saints, the question is can they stay in the Premier League.

Boss Nigel Adkins said: “We took the game to them but at the moment we are shipping too many goals and that’s something we will address.’’

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