Football: Everton defeat Fulham 4-1 at Goodison Park
Friday, April 6, 2007
|Goalscorers for Everton FC||Carsley (25'), Stubbs (34'), Vaughan (45'), Anichebe (80')|
|Goalscorers for Fulham FC||Bocanegra (22')|
|Bookings (Everton FC)||None|
|Bookings (Fulham FC)||None|
Everton came from behind to thrash Fulham 4-1 on Friday at Goodison Park. Everton had a chance to jump into fifth place in the league ahead of Bolton, while Fulham could have jumped from fifteenth all the way to eleventh, boosting their chances of league survival. England international Andy Johnson was paired with 18 year old James Vaughan up front for Everton, while Chris Coleman's Fulham had a full North American strike force through American Bryan McBride and Canadian Thomasz Radzinski.
The visitors started the game strongly with long range efforts from Rosenior and Smertin, but neither were able to bother Tim Howard in the Everton goal. Mikel Arteta was able to trouble Antti Niemi, however, in the Fulham goal, but the Finnish keeper did well to keep the ball out of the bottom corner. Carlos Bocanegra then opened Everton wide open as he stole away from the defenders and headed home Simon Davies' cross, giving Fulham the lead after 22 minutes. Everton answered back quickly through Lee Carsley after Joleon Lescott's ball found him in the box, and Carsley knocked home the equalizing goal. Everton put Fulham on the back foot after their goal, and shoul have taken the lead when a nice interchange of play between Vaughan and Johnson left Vaughaun all alone on net, but his shot was hit off the post, and bobbled safely to a Fulham defender. Everton were then awarded a free kick in the Fulham zone, and Mikel Arteta stepped up to take. His outswinging ball was glanced off the head of Alan Stubbs, and it somehow eluded Niemi, as the homeside took the lead. Vaughaun would hit the post again several minutes later, but he finally notched him name on the scoresheet just before the break. Arteta and Johnson made room on the left side, and Arteta's cross was finished well by the young Vaughan, giving Everton a demanding 3-1 lead.
After the break, Fulham came out strongly, eager to get back into the match. McBride had two good chances from headers, but he was unable to find the net on either. Zat Knight then had a chance for Fulham, but the cottagers where again unable to get their attempts on target. Vuaghan was soon replaced by fellow youngster Victor Anichebe, and he made a nearly instant impact. Anichebee received a pass within the box, and he cooly side-footed the ball hard and low past Niemi, leaving the keeper no chance, and guaranteeing Everton the win on the afternoon. Substitute Helguson had two chances in quick succession for Fulham, but it wasn't to be their day, as the cottagers drop dangerously into relegation contention.
Everton's next match in the league is in only 3 days time against Bolton, who are now in sixth place after the Toffee's win. Fulham on the other hand will be facing off with fellow relegation contenders Manchester City at Craven Cottage, and it is looking up to be a true relegation six-pointer.
- Andrew Scurr. "Everton stroll past Cottagers" — , April 6, 2007