Everton Independent Research Data


Manchester City 3, Everton 1 (Echo)
By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
Sep 1 2002
TO err is human, to forgive divine ... apparently. But the catalogue of catastrophic clangers Everton are committing this season is almost unforgiveable. If it wasn't for basic errors the Blues might have enjoyed an outstanding start to the season. As it is they have slithered streakily to a less than steady one. Everton handed three more goals on a silver salver to grateful opposition on Saturday, Manchester City the pleased beneficiaries this time. But most worrying is that different culprits have been responsible each week. Richard Wright held his hand up for failing to do, well, just that on day one. Thomas Gravesen rolled a wretched backpass against Birmingham in midweek - while on Saturday Steve Simonsen flopped tardily after Anelka's deflected free-kick, three dithering defenders failed to clear an inviting cross a couple of minutes later - then Gary Naysmith was dispossessed dribbling away from his own area. Even when Everton did keep a clean sheet at Sunderland, it was in spite of a penalty-kick presented to their opponents. David Moyes said afterwards: "We didn't deserve to lose the game. As simple as that. But you have to take your chances when you get them. The performance was very good, the result was not." It was difficult to agree. With 11 against 11 Everton were heading for the same kind of annihilation they suffered the last time they came to Maine Road. Anelka had scored twice, Huckerby had come within a desperate six-yard box clearance of pulling the ball back for the French-man's hat-trick and Marc-Vivien Foe had seen two unmarked headers saved by Simonsen, all in the space of 22 minutes. But then two significant changes shaped the rest of the match. David Moyes replaced the sluggish Li Tie with the spikey Tobias Linderoth - surely the earliest tactical substitution of the season - and referee Barry Knight altered the whole direction of the match in one moment of supreme harshness. He correctly awarded Everton a penalty for Wright-Phillips' mistimed tackle on Nay-smith, but also wrongly red-carded the young wing- back for denying a goalscoring opportunity. If that was really the case, Naysmith is being improperly employed as a full-back. He should be partnering Campbell or Radzinski up front. Against 10 men Everton did dictate, but never carried enough conviction to beat the wonderfully obstinate Peter Schmeichel. Richard Wright may well be the long term solution to Everton's problem goalkeeping position, but short-term Schmeichel might have offered a cheaper and more effective remedy. But the barrage of possession and possibilities Everton offered dried up with 25 minutes to go when the visitors reverted to 4-3-3. Between the second half restart and a double substitution, Everton carved out two one against ones for Alexandersson and Campbell, a close range volley for David Unsworth which was beaten out and an Alan Stubbs header back across goal which Campbell was inches away from converting. But after the switch Everton produced just a couple of long range drives from Rodrigo, while at the other end Simonsen had to produce a dramatic save to deny Huckerby - and Anelka scored. On paper 4-3-3 looks like a dramatically attack-minded formation. But in practice Rooney, Campbell and Radzinski find the space they would usually explore significantly reduced, there's less opportunity for the mid-field to arrive late and there are more midfield holes for the opposition to invade. The travelling Evertonians trudged away from Maine Road sensing that another opportunity had been missed this season. It could have been worse, mind. City carved out a clutch of opportunities in the opening quarter, without looking anything like as slick or purposeful as they had done against Newcastle seven days earlier. Anelka's deflected free-kick might have been fortunate, while his second, hooked in from close range three minutes later was downright sloppy defending, but Foe had a header athletically palmed over by Simonsen, the same player wasted a much clearer opening from the resulting corner and only a desperate clearance poked a pull-back off Anelka's toe in the 21st minute. Everton's reply was a lone Thomas Gravesen shot which flew a couple of feet wide. That all changed in the 26th minute when Wright-Phillips mistimed his lunge on Naysmith's overlap and conceded a penalty. The red card was harsh, the protests prolonged, but Unsworth kept his composure to clip an assured spot-kick past Schmeichel. It was the only thing which beat the big Dane. The contempt with which he dealt with some shots was reminiscent of another goal-keeping legend, Big Nev.
In a different sport on a far different stage, Muhammad Ali famously drained the confidence and composure from George Foreman by absorbing his biggest shots and muttering "That the best you got, sucker?" On a football stage Schmeichel intimidates opponents in much the same way.
He swatted David Unsworth's close range volley away with the disdain he'd reserve for a pre-match kick-in, he blocked one-on-ones from Campbell and Alexandersson with ease and when he did spill a Rodrigo cross to his near post he quickly recovered. Rodrigo brought some urgency and ideas to Everton's attacking efforts and whistled two 25-yard shots narrowly wide, although he also struck a free-kick which if it had been any further wide might have troubled Steve Simonsen more than Schmeichel. Everton's eagerness to get forward finally undid them five minutes from time, when Naysmith was dispossessed by Anelka who finished sublimely. The Frenchman even broke into a beaming smile. The opposition ranks were all dismayed grimaces and groans - and most of them had been self-inflicted.
MANCHESTER CITY (3-5-2): Schmeichel, Sun, Howey, Distin, Wright-Phillips, Benarbia, Foe, Berkovic (Horlock 66 mins), Jensen, Anelka, Huckerby (Tiatto 78 mins). Unused substitutes: Nash, Dunne.
EVERTON (4-4-2): Simonsen, Hibbert, Weir, Stubbs, Naysmith, Alexandersson (Rooney 63 mins), Tie (Linderoth 24 mins), Gravesen, Unsworth (Rodrigo 63 mins), Campbell, Radzinski. Unused substitutes: Gerrard, Wei Feng.
REFEREE: Barry Knight. BOOKINGS: Benarbia (76 mins) dissent.
SENDING-OFF: Wright-Phillips (27 mins) denying goalscoring opportunity.
GOALS: Anelka (13 mins) 1-0, Anelka (16 mins) 2-0, Unsworth penalty (28 mins) 2-1, Anelka (84 mins) 3-1.

Manchester City 3, Everton 1 (Echo)
Sep 1 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
TO err is human, to forgive divine ... apparently. But the catalogue of catastrophic clangers Everton are committing this season is almost unforgiveable. If it wasn't for basic errors the Blues might have enjoyed an outstanding start to the season. As it is they have slithered streakily to a less than steady one. Everton handed three more goals on a silver salver to grateful opposition on Saturday, Manchester City the pleased beneficiaries this time. But most worrying is that different culprits have been responsible each week. Richard Wright held his hand up for failing to do, well, just that on day one. Thomas Gravesen rolled a wretched backpass against Birmingham in midweek - while on Saturday Steve Simonsen flopped tardily after Anelka's deflected free-kick, three dithering defenders failed to clear an inviting cross a couple of minutes later - then Gary Naysmith was dispossessed dribbling away from his own area. Even when Everton did keep a clean sheet at Sunderland, it was in spite of a penalty-kick presented to their opponents. David Moyes said afterwards: "We didn't deserve to lose the game. As simple as that. But you have to take your chances when you get them. The performance was very good, the result was not." It was difficult to agree. With 11 against 11 Everton were heading for the same kind of annihilation they suffered the last time they came to Maine Road. Anelka had scored twice, Huckerby had come within a desperate six-yard box clearance of pulling the ball back for the French-man's hat-trick and Marc-Vivien Foe had seen two unmarked headers saved by Simonsen, all in the space of 22 minutes. But then two significant changes shaped the rest of the match. David Moyes replaced the sluggish Li Tie with the spikey Tobias Linderoth - surely the earliest tactical substitution of the season - and referee Barry Knight altered the whole direction of the match in one moment of supreme harshness. He correctly awarded Everton a penalty for Wright-Phillips' mistimed tackle on Nay-smith, but also wrongly red-carded the young wing- back for denying a goalscoring opportunity. If that was really the case, Naysmith is being improperly employed as a full-back. He should be partnering Campbell or Radzinski up front. Against 10 men Everton did dictate, but never carried enough conviction to beat the wonderfully obstinate Peter Schmeichel. Richard Wright may well be the long term solution to Everton's problem goalkeeping position, but short-term Schmeichel might have offered a cheaper and more effective remedy. But the barrage of possession and possibilities Everton offered dried up with 25 minutes to go when the visitors reverted to 4-3-3. Between the second half restart and a double substitution, Everton carved out two one against ones for Alexandersson and Campbell, a close range volley for David Unsworth which was beaten out and an Alan Stubbs header back across goal which Campbell was inches away from converting. But after the switch Everton produced just a couple of long range drives from Rodrigo, while at the other end Simonsen had to produce a dramatic save to deny Huckerby - and Anelka scored. On paper 4-3-3 looks like a dramatically attack-minded formation. But in practice Rooney, Campbell and Radzinski find the space they would usually explore significantly reduced, there's less opportunity for the mid-field to arrive late and there are more midfield holes for the opposition to invade. The travelling Evertonians trudged away from Maine Road sensing that another opportunity had been missed this season. It could have been worse, mind. City carved out a clutch of opportunities in the opening quarter, without looking anything like as slick or purposeful as they had done against Newcastle seven days earlier.
Anelka's deflected free-kick might have been fortunate, while his second, hooked in from close range three minutes later was downright sloppy defending, but Foe had a header athletically palmed over by Simonsen, the same player wasted a much clearer opening from the resulting corner and only a desperate clearance poked a pull-back off Anelka's toe in the 21st minute. Everton's reply was a lone Thomas Gravesen shot which flew a couple of feet wide. That all changed in the 26th minute when Wright-Phillips mistimed his lunge on Naysmith's overlap and conceded a penalty. The red card was harsh, the protests prolonged, but Unsworth kept his composure to clip an assured spot-kick past Schmeichel. It was the only thing which beat the big Dane. The contempt with which he dealt with some shots was reminiscent of another goal-keeping legend, Big Nev.
In a different sport on a far different stage, Muhammad Ali famously drained the confidence and composure from George Foreman by absorbing his biggest shots and muttering "That the best you got, sucker?" On a football stage Schmeichel intimidates opponents in much the same way.
He swatted David Unsworth's close range volley away with the disdain he'd reserve for a pre-match kick-in, he blocked one-on-ones from Campbell and Alexandersson with ease and when he did spill a Rodrigo cross to his near post he quickly recovered. Rodrigo brought some urgency and ideas to Everton's attacking efforts and whistled two 25-yard shots narrowly wide, although he also struck a free-kick which if it had been any further wide might have troubled Steve Simonsen more than Schmeichel. Everton's eagerness to get forward finally undid them five minutes from time, when Naysmith was dispossessed by Anelka who finished sublimely. The Frenchman even broke into a beaming smile. The opposition ranks were all dismayed grimaces and groans - and most of them had been self-inflicted.
MANCHESTER CITY (3-5-2): Schmeichel, Sun, Howey, Distin, Wright-Phillips, Benarbia, Foe, Berkovic (Horlock 66 mins), Jensen, Anelka, Huckerby (Tiatto 78 mins). Unused substitutes: Nash, Dunne.
EVERTON (4-4-2): Simonsen, Hibbert, Weir, Stubbs, Naysmith, Alexandersson (Rooney 63 mins), Tie (Linderoth 24 mins), Gravesen, Unsworth (Rodrigo 63 mins), Campbell, Radzinski. Unused substitutes: Gerrard, Wei Feng.
REFEREE: Barry Knight. BOOKINGS: Benarbia (76 mins) dissent.
SENDING-OFF: Wright-Phillips (27 mins) denying goalscoring opportunity.
GOALS: Anelka (13 mins) 1-0, Anelka (16 mins) 2-0, Unsworth penalty (28 mins) 2-1, Anelka (84 mins) 3-1.

Upbeat Moyes lays down gaunlet
Report By Ian Doyle, Daily Post
Sep 2 2002
DAVID MOYES has laid down a goalscoring gauntlet to his midfielders after Everton surrendered their unbeaten Premiership record on Saturday. The Blues boss saw his side spurn a host of second-half chances as they fell to a 3-1 defeat at Manchester City in an explosive clash at Maine Road.
Former Liverpool striker Nicolas Anelka netted a hat-trick and although Everton played over an hour against 10 men following the controversial sending-off of Shaun Wright-Phillips, they had only David Unsworth's 28th-minute penalty to show for it. It left Moyes to contemplate on his side's profligacy in front of goal costing possible victory. "The game was there for us on Saturday - we have got to start taking our chances when we get them," said the Blues boss. "We had five good opportunities in the second half to score and you would have thought that would have been enough to get at least one goal. "We need to try and get the mid-field scoring more goals. "If I had to be critical about the team, I want the midfielders to get into more goalscoring opportunities." Moyes continued: "The players had opportunities to turn the game and their goalkeeper made some fine saves.
"I'm disappointed with the result but not with the performance. We created chances and opportunities and the players created enough chances to have won the game, never mind get a draw. "People will say this was a bad day for Everton but I honestly don't think that. I thought there were lots of positives. "The way we approached the game, the way we passed the ball about, there were lots of things right about the display. "But the one thing you have to take from a game is the right result, and we couldn't manage that." Moyes refused to point the finger at individuals following the setback. "There was nobody desperately at fault for the defeat, but we were a bit sloppy on a couple of the goals we conceded," he added. "The first goal could have happened to anyone, but the second was disappointing from our point of view. "I felt we were 2-0 down and did not deserve to be. We had not done a lot wrong at that point." Li Tie was withdrawn after just 24 minutes of Saturday's encounter, dubbed a head-to-head with City's Chinese international Sun Jihai.
And Moyes insisted: "I don't think it was a case of the pace of the Premiership catching up with Li Tie. "He has played very well in his previous three games but he didn't start the game particularly well and I felt it was right to make the change. He's had an ankle injury so perhaps that's maybe been on his mind as well." City boss Kevin Keegan revealed referee Barry Knight is willing to review the sending-off of Wright-Phillips, who was given his marching orders for a professional foul by upending Gary Naysmith in the area. And Moyes is willing to back the Maine Road club if they are forced to appeal over the red card. "It was a penalty but it was not a sending-off," said Moyes. "I would support anyone who has been wronged. I will look at the incident again but I said to Kevin Keegan at the time that he should not have been sent off." Moyes, meanwhile, will ask Scotland boss Berti Vogts to delay Scot Gemmill's arrival for his country's European Championship qualifier with the Faroe Islands. "Scot is coming back from injury and needs games," he said. "We have a reserve game on Wednesday and I would prefer him to play in that first."
* EVERTON did not take up the option of signing trialist Moreno Torricelli before Saturday's transfer deadline.

Wales trip the tonic for Pembridge
Sep 2 2002 By Scott Mcleod, Liverpool Echo
SLIMLINE Mark Pembridge has been prescribed a week training with the Wales squad by manager David Moyes in order to get over the stomach bug which kept him bed-ridden last week.
The midfielder has lost seven pounds in weight because of the virus which kept him out of the Everton line-up for the last two games. But having recovered from the illness, the Everton boss believes joining up with Mark Hughes' Wales squad this week for the European Championship qualifier against Finland will provide Pembridge with the best chance of returning to fitness in time for the trip to Southampton on September 11. "Mark suffered three days of sickness and lost a lot of weight in that time," revealed the Everton boss. "But now he has recovered, the weight should return quite quickly and joining up with the Wales squad is the best thing for him. "He needs to regain his strength and he now has 10 days to do that before the trip to Southampton."
Wales boss Hughes, a former Everton player, is eager to have Pembridge in his squad after the midfielder produced an excellent display in a friendly against Croatia last month. Everton coach Alan Irvine added: "Mark has been excellent for us this season and we are aware of how well he played for Wales in Croatia. "He obviously can do with a week's training and we know he will get that. By the end of the week he should be back to full fitness and playing an international by then should be no problem." One player who will not be allowed to join up with his international squad right away, however, is Scotland's Scot Gemmill. The midfielder has been named in Berti Vogts' squad for Saturday's European Championship qualifier against the Faroe Islands. Moyes added: "I have had a word with Berti Vogts about Scot and he has agreed to allow him to stay with us until Wednesday in order to get another reserve game under his belt. Scottish defender Gary Naysmith will also delay joining up with Vogts' squad after picking up a knock on his ankle against Manchester City.
The injury is not serious but the player will receive treatment at Bellefield before travelling north to report for international duty.

Keegan praises Anelka
Sep 2 2002 Liverpool Echo
Kevin Keegan told his old club just what they were missing today - as he paid tribiute to summer signing from Anfield Nicolas Anelka. The Frenchman, who hit just four Premier-ship goals for the Reds last season, opened his Maine Road account with a hat-trick against Everton.
Afterwards Keegan enthused: "The biggest thing Nicolas gave us today was his energy and effort."To get a hat-trick in your first home game is excellent, but I can also remember him chasing back 60 or 70 yards to clear in his own penalty area just before half-time and that tells you everything about the player."He is an outstanding footballer and what about his work-rate? That's what I thoughtwas outstanding."I think he is at the right club now. We respect him. We work with him every day and it's just a matter of time before he scores goals."-He spends a lot of time out on the training pitch after everyone else has gone - he remainds me of David Beckham in that respect."

10-day wait to lift the Blues
Sep 2 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
EVERTON must wait 10 days to kick-start their season again after Saturday's disappointing defeat at Manchester City. An international break means the Blues do not play again until the trip to Southampton on September 11. Skipper David Weir said: "The League hasn't really started yet. We went to Sunderland, got a good result, came here and had a bad one. "The two home games have been nip and tuck and we really should have won them, but we haven't and all we can say is the season starts now for us. "We have to think about what we can do to turn the season into a success for us. "We lost two goals early on Saturday, then managed to get back into it and had a lot of pressure without ever really looking like we were going to score. "I wouldn't say we are leaking goals. Gary was trying to chase the game at the end and took a wee chance and was punished for it.
"But when you're playing against 10-men they pull everyone behind the ball and it's difficult to break them down. "We just needed a little break which we didn't get today." Manager David Moyes was adamant justice had not been done on the day. "We didn't deserve to lose the game, as simple as that. But you have to take your chances when you get them," he said. "It was there for us. The performance was very good, but the result was not. "The first goal can happen to anybody, but the second was disappointing. We were 2-0 down and didn't deserve to be. We hadn't done a lot wrong, but found ourselves two goals behind. "We had five opportunities in the second half to score, good opportunities, and you would hope that that might be enough. If you create that at Maine Road you would normally be delighted. "Alan Stubbs had a free header at the back post which I thought he should have scored. Niclas Alexandersson and Kevin Campbell only had the goal-keeper to beat, David Unsworth had an effort, there were a couple of shots from Rodrigo and before you know it that's six or seven opportunities missed." Moyes also explained that his early substitution of Chinese midfielder Li Tie was tactical. "He just wasn't quite up to the pace today," explained the Blues' boss, after replacing Tie with Tobias Linderoth just 24 minutes into the game. "He didn't start particularly well and I thought the time was right to make a change. "Li Wei Feng was on the bench because I didn't have a defender there and I thought we needed one."

Keegan backs Nic to be top scorer
Sep 2 2002 By Ian Doyle, Daily Post
KEVIN KEEGAN has backed hat-trick hero Nicolas Anelka to finish as the Premiership's top scorer - then stated that the Manchester City striker was now at the "right club". Keegan swooped to bring the Frenchman to Maine Road in a £13million deal over the summer after Liverpool boss Gerard Houllier decided against making Anelka's loan move to Anfield permanent. The Reds instead opted for Senegalese World Cup star El Hadji Diouf - but Keegan insists they have given up "one of the greatest strikers in the world". "I honestly believed Liverpool would sign him," said Keegan. "He did well there last season. "The first minute I heard that Liverpool were not going to take up their option to sign him, I got his number and told him he'd be welcome here. "I was driving round France with my wife visiting the wine region, but I was speaking to him all the time and eventually he said yes to joining us. "I think we have got one of the greatest strikers in the world. This is the right club for him here. I wouldn't bet against him being top scorer in the Premiership this season."
While Anelka was getting the goals on Saturday, goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel was proving a formidable barrier at the other end. Keegan said: "He's had three incredible games for us. I don't know what he'll be like when he really gets to know us and is match fit. His performances have been outstanding."

Tal move in limbo as physio arrives
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 3 2002
CONFUSION surrounded the future of Everton midfielder Idan Tal last night after Spanish club Rayo Vallecano claimed they had recruited the Israeli international. The Primera Liga club said they had signed the 26-year-old, who has 28 international caps, earlier yesterday as the transfer window in Spain did not close until 7pm British time in that country. But Everton officials have revealed Tal's move could not go through as the Football Association here had refused to give international clearance. The Goodison Park club are ready to release the outoffavour player on a free transfer once the deal has been ratified. Vallecano have appealed to FIFA but a decision is not expected until today. Meanwhile, David Moyes has recruited highlyrespected physio Mick Rathbone from former club Preston North End in a bid to cure Everton's persistent injury problems. The Blues boss has persuaded Rathbone to sever a seven-year allegiance with Deepdale and take control of the busy Bellefield treatment room. Moyes recently parted company with former physio Rob Ryles and undertook a lengthy battle with his former employees to bring Rathbone to Goodison Park.
And it needed Everton to agree a compensation package with Preston at the weekend for the medical transfer to take place. Rathbone, affectionately known as 'Baz' to the Preston faithful, said: "I've had seven great years at Preston and seen the team and the stadium grow from third division obscurity to the strong outfit it is today. "It is a great wrench leaving Deepdale but I'm sure everybody knows that as a professional you must strive to be the best." Rathbone's first task will be to get Joseph Yobo and Duncan Ferguson back to fitness as soon as possible, and Gary Naysmith has now joined the Blues injury list after picking up a slight knock at Maine Road. He is now expected to join up with Berti Vogts' Scotland squad later in the week ahead of their European Championship qualifier with the Faroe Islands. Peter Clarke, meanwhile, has been called up for international duty with David Platt's England under-21s for the first time. The Blues defender, currently enjoying a successful loan spell at Blackpool, is in the squad to face Yugoslavia at the Reebok Stadium on Friday along with ex-Evertonian Francis Jeffers.

FA rescind Wright-Phillips ban
September 03, 2002
Manchester Evening News
SHAUN WRIGHT-Phillips will not have to serve a three-match ban after Kent referee Barry Knight decided to change his mind over Saturday's red card against Everton. The 20-year-old Blues star was sent-off in the 28th minute of the 3-1 win for a `professional foul' on Gary Naysmith but after reviewing the video of the game Mr Knight saw the incident differently. "Shaun Wright-Phillips will not serve a suspension for his sending off against Everton on Saturday," said a statement from the FA. "The foul was a cautionable offence rather than a sending off offence."

Blues await FIFA ruling
Sep 3 2002 By Rob Brady, Liverpool Echo
EVERTON were today waiting on a FIFA decision that could rekindle Israeli international Idan Tal's move to Spanish club Rayo Vallecano. The deal was halted by the English FA's refusal to give international clearance following the closure of the transfer window on Saturday.
But Spain's deadline was not until yesterday evening and the Primera Liga side have appealed to FIFA. A decision was expected today. Everton boss David Moyes said: " Everything was agreed, but now we have to wait on FIFA's decision." Midfielder Tal, 26, has struggled to make an impression at Goodison since Moyes took charge. He has played just 29 league games for the Blues since moving to Merseyside two years ago. He has previously played in Spain for Merida in 1999. Meanwhile, Moyes will use this weekend's international break to assess the club's injury problems. He said: "We would prefer to have a game to look forward to this weekend, but it does give a few players the chance to shake off minor niggles. "It is disappointing when you can't work with all the players, but we do have the chance to look more closely at some of our other players this week." Goalkeeper Richard Wright has had a second X- ray on his injured hand, while defender Joseph Yobo is back in full training and is in contention for Everton's next match on September 11. Everton have finally landed highlyrated physio Mick Rathbone to strengthen their treatment room. Rathbone said: "I've had seven great years at Preston. It's a great wrench to leave, but as a professional you must strive to be the best."

A bad break for Moyes!
Sep 3 2002 By Kevin Ratcliffe, Liverpool Echo
LAST season Walter Smith welcomed every international break as an opportunity for key players to return from injury. The on-going fitness problems in the squad were a constant hindrance for him and when an international weekend provided a fortnight's break from league action he was thankful.
Players could recuperate, they had a little bit longer to return to the team. But, seemingly, the problems never eased. It is a different story for David Moyes. This week's break from action is a real frustration for him. Why? Because he is eager to get his side back in action after Saturday's defeat at Manchester City and he has a virtually fully-fit squad at his disposal. When things are not going well players tend to stay on the treatment table a little longer, being less eager to get back into the team.
But, with a new manager in place, everybody is desperate to impress. So instead of resembling Emergency Ward 10, Bellefield will be very quiet this week, and that's more acceptable than having key players receiving treatment from the physio for weeks at a time. Midfield the key DAVID Moyes is right when he says he needs more goals from midfield. No side can expect to make an impact in the table with an overreliance on goals from one area. Manchester United and Arsenal have dominated the Premiership in the last 10 years and it is no coincidence that both clubs get a lot of goals from midfield and even defence. Ideally, a manager looks for his midfield to come up with 15 to 20 goals in a season. Five goals from your three main midfielders and you are well on the way to that target. Moyes likes to play adventurous football, and so there will be plenty of oportunities for the midfield men to get forward and make an impact on the scoresheet. Keane a throwback to the bad old days ROY Keane deserves the hefty fine Alex Ferguson has given him in the wake of Saturday's sending off at Sunderland. The former Republic of Ireland international gave Uriah Rennie no choice after elbowing Jason McAteer in the latter stages of the 1-1 draw.
But to suggest the use of the elbow is a new phenomenon in the game is well wide of the mark.
Nowadays, with TV cameras covering every angle on the pitch, players can't get away with anything.
It was a different story 15 years ago, when fewer TV cameras meant you were far less likely to be caught. Incidents like the one involving Keane on Saturday were much more commonplace.
I lost count of the number of times I had to pick Dave Watson up off the floor after being elbowed.
In that respect, Keane is a throwback to the 70s and 80s. He is a brilliant player, but he cannot be allowed to get away with throwing his elbows around so cynically.

Window still open for Tal
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 4 2002
IDAN TAL is expected to complete a free transfer move to Rayo Vallecano despite the European transfer window slamming shut at the weekend. Everton have been caught up in the confusion surrounding the introduction of the new restrictions after Spanish sides were granted a 48-hour extension to sign players because of a public holiday. All the paperwork had been done on the deal before the Spanish deadline after Everton decided to release the Israeli international winger.
But as the English deadline had passed at 5pm on Saturday the FA refused to give Tal international clearance to move to the Madrid-based club. Vallecano have since appealed to FIFA over the decision and both they and Everton expect the transfer to be given the green light this week.
Everton's head of communications Ian Ross confirmed: "We have reached agreement with Idan Tal's agent and we are now awaiting FIFA clearance." The 26-year-old winger cost £750,000 two seasons ago and made 32 appearances for the Blues, scoring twice, but has never figured for the first team since David Moyes took control in March. Scot Gemmill, meanwhile, will step up his bid for match fitness tonight when Everton's reserves take on Manchester United at Halton Stadium, Widnes (kick-off 7pm). The Blues midfielder is then expected to join the Scotland squad ahead of their European Championship qualifier with the Faroe Islands. Gary Naysmith, who picked up an ankle knock in the 3-1 defeat at Manchester City on Saturday, has now travelled north along with David Weir.

Everton await Wright verdict
Sep 4 2002 By Scott McLeod, Liverpool Echo
EVERTON are anxiously waiting on the results of a second x-ray on Richard Wright's injured hand.
The £3.5m goalkeeper was expected to shake off the injury in time for the trip to Manchester City at the weekend. But, despite a scan last week revealing no break, the 24-year-old is still complaining that the hand is causing him pain. The injury was sustained during the 1-0 win at Sunder-land 10 days ago but was not deemed to be serious. However, new physio Mick Rathbone ordered a second scan yesterday because the problem is not getting any better, amid fears it could be broken after all.
Meanwhile, Scot Gemmill will step us his bid for full fitness tonight when he turns out for Everton's reserves against Manchester United. The midfielder is desperate for match practice as he recovers from injury. He will turn out for the second string at The Halton Stadium in Widnes for the game that kicks off at 7pm before joining up with the Scotland squad ahead of the weekend Euro 2004 qualifier with the Faroe Islands. FIFA were keeping Everton waiting this morning on their decision over the proposed transfer of Israeli international Idan Tal to Spanish side Rayo Valecano.
The Blues have agreed to allow the midfielder to go to the La Liga side on a free transfer, but the move has yet to be given the green light from FIFA after the FA blocked the deal. The FA refused to give international clearance following the closure of the transfer window on Saturday, but Valecano have appealed because the Spanish league was granted a 4 8 hour extension. Everton's Head of Corporate Affairs and PR, Ian Ross said: "We have reached agreement with Idan Tal's agent and we are now awaiting FIFA clearance." The 26-year-old winger, who was signed from Maccabi Petach-Tikva two seasons ago, made 32 appearances for the Blues, scoring two goals.

Osman strike sinks United
Daily Post
Sep 5 2002
LEON Osman clinched three Barclaycard Premiership Reserve League North points for Everton with an 81st-minute goal at the Halton Stadium last night. Wayne Rooney took the ball past the United defence and cut it back to Osman, who fired a right-foot shot past Spanish goalkeeper Ricardo Lopez to maintain the Blues' 100pc start to the season. Everton featured seven players with first team experience, while the visitors had Gary Neville, David May, Luke Chadwick and Diego Forlan in their starting lineup. Uruguayan Forlan almost gave United a third-minute lead but his header was tipped over by Paul Gerrard. The Everton keeper also did well to parry Daniel Nardiello's effort after he had evaded Joseph Yobo's challenge. The Blues' central defence pairing of Yobo and Li Wei Feng looked solid while Rooney, making only his second start for the reserves, was a constant threat further forward. Steve Watson found Rooney, who beat three United defenders and rounded Ricardo, only to see his shot strike the outside of the post and the danger cleared. United almost went ahead just before the half-hour when Nardiello connected with Chadwick's cross but Gerrard denied the youngster his second goal for United reserves this season. Rodrigo twice found himself with good opportunities, but each time the Brazilian failed to trouble Ricardo. Everton went on the attack after half-time, captain Scot Gemmill and Watson both bringing saves out of United's newlysigned Spaniard. Rodrigo should have put Everton ahead when he robbed England defender Neville - making his first competitive appearance since suffering the foot injury that put him out of the World Cup - but with just Ricardo to beat, the Brazilian took too much time and Lee Roche was able to clear the danger. Ricardo denied Rooney and Rodrigo as Everton piled on the pressure, while Forlan again tested the Everton defence with a pacy run down the left-hand side. His shot flew past Paul Gerrard and, to the Blues' relief, also the onrushing Nardiello and the post. The Blues had what would have been a second goal disallowed for offside when Rooney put in a wonderful ball to Nick Chadwick.
Chadwick also forced a wonderful save from Ricardo and Rooney was unlucky to see his effort cannon off Roche and away from the danger area.
EVERTON: Gerrard, O'Hanlon, Feng, Yobo, McLeod, Watson, Osman, Gemmill, Rodrigo, Rooney, Chadwick. Subs: Pilkington, Cole, Carney, Schumacher, Brown.
MANCHESTER UNITED: Ricardo, G Neville, Roche, May, Pugh, Chadwick, Lynch, Rankin, Richardson (Eagles), Forlan, Nardiello. Subs: Muirhead, B Williams, Tate, Jones.
Referee: Mr A Hogg.
Attendance: 2,519.

Wright's fitness boost for Blues
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 5 2002
DAVID MOYES breathed a sigh of relief last night after Richard Wright was given the all-clear to resume his Everton revival. New Goodison physio Mick Rathbone sent the Blues keeper for a second scan on the hand damaged during the 1-0 victory at Sunderland 12 days ago, sparking fears it could be broken after all. But the results confirmed 24-year-old Wright has suffered just severe bruising - giving him a chance of returning to action after a two-game absence at Southampton next Wednesday. The former Arsenal keeper has missed Everton's last two Premiership outings and is still feeling some discomfort. But Blues boss Moyes will hope that next Wednesday Wright can finally get the chance to build on his penalty heroics at the Stadium of Light. Meanwhile, Italian defender Moreno Torricelli has claimed a move to the Blues is still a possibility despite Everton failing to follow up their interest in the former Juventus man last week. Torricelli, also linked with Portsmouth and Blackburn, could be set for a shock return to Fiorentina as they try to entice former players back despite their relegation to Serie C2 for financial reasons. The Viola have persuaded Angelo Di Livio to drop down and hope Torricelli will follow suit - but the defender revealed he is waiting for an offer from Goodison Park. Despite the closure of the transfer-window, Torricelli is now a free agent and can sign for a club before it reopens in January. "I have had a trial with Everton and they will give an answer to me within 10 days," the 32-year-old said. "If it goes well, I will go to England." Joseph Yobo stepped up his fitness bid last night as a strong Everton reserve side defeated Manchester United 1-0 at Halton Stadium. Wayne Rooney, Rodrigo, Steve Watson and Nick Chadwick were all included in the reserve team squad along with Scot Gemmill who, despite last night's run-out, has pulled out of the Scotland squad for this Saturday's European Championship qualifier due to a lack of match sharpness.

Weir's warning over soccer outpost
Sep 5 2002 Liverpool Echo
SCOTLAND defender David Weir has called on his less experienced team-mates not to be distracted by the alien landscape of one of football's most obscure outposts. The Scots begin their Euro 2004 qualification campaign with a trip to the Faroe Islands, the scene of one of their more embarrassing results in recent history. In June 1999, Craig Brown's team could only emerge with a 1-1 draw in Toftir, succumbing to a late equaliser after Matt Elliott had been sent off for violent conduct.
Weir is one of only three survivors of that day to make the trip again, with captain Paul Lambert and goalscorer Allan Johnston the others. The Everton star recalled: "It is a strange place - there was grass on the hotel roof for example. It wasn't really like playing an international and there were very few people watching. "So we have got to remember there is a very big prize at the end of it."
Scotland manager Berti Vogts has complained bitterly about having to return to Toftir now the Faroes have a brand new stadium in the capital, Torshavn. But the Faroese have refused to budge.
The Scots have lost all five recognised internationals under the German and go into the match with a real fear another slip-up could follow. Weir admitted: "Back then we were a more settled team and we were expected to steamroller them. It is not a foregone conclusion this time. "I'm sure there is edginess among the players because we don't want to go to a place like that and not get a result because that would be a disaster. "But we have been working hard on our shape and on set-pieces, which could be crucial. "I would imagine the ball is going to be out of play a lot because the pitch is so small. So if we can capitalise on those then it could make a difference." But Weir also admitted the home side might fancy the battle too. He said: "I remember it was a really tight pitch and they were fit and organised. The were strong, physical boys and we will have to match that."
Weir is expected to win his 36th cap for his country.

Blues made to wait for Torricelli
Sep 5 2002 By Scott McLeod, Liverpool Echo
IDAN Tal's impending exit from Goodison Park could pave the way for the arrival of former Italian international Moreno Torricelli. The 32-year-old former Juventus defender had a trial with Everton last week but returned to Italy at the weekend without being offered a deal. However, if FIFA overrule the English FA's decision to block Idan Tal's transfer to Spanish La Liga outfit Rayo Vallecano, the money saved from the Israeli's wages could be used to finance a move for Torricelli.
He has returned to Italy and has been offered the opportunity to return to Fiorentina, who were relegated to Serie C2 last season because of financial problems. But the Italian is eager to secure a move to England after his time at Everton. He said: "I have had a trial with Everton and they will give an answer to me within 10 days. If it goes well I will go to England." Although the transfer window closed last weekend, Everton would be able to sign Torricelli because he is a free agent.
However, any move depends on the success of Vallecano's appeal to FIFA over the FA's refusal to give Tal clearance. The FA refused to grant the move because the English transfer deadline passed but because the Spanish league were given an extra 48 hours to complete the transfer Vallecano are hopeful FIFA will rule in their favour. Moyes was impressed with Torricelli's quality last week but did have reservations. He said: "You could see he is and was an excellent player but he needs three or four weeks to the right level of fitness." Torricelli is currently training with Fiorentina to build his fitness in the hope a move to England and Everton could become a reality.

Tal gets go-ahead for Spain transfer
By Ian Doyle, Daily Post
Sep 6 2002
IDAN TAL will today end his nightmare spell at Everton by joining Rayo Vallecano after the Football Association agreed to release his registration. The Spanish side have been keen to sign the Israeli winger after it emerged he was free to leave Goodison Park after just two years. But their attempts were hindered by the FA, who refused to give the green light to the move. They claimed the deal fell out-side the new transfer window which closed in England last Saturday, despite Spanish clubs being given an extra 48 hours' grace due to a dual public holiday Everton secretary David Harrison said: "The FA have agreed to release Idan Tal's registration which should see him sign for Rayo Vallecano in the next 24 hours." Tal's imminent departure could pave the way for Moreno Torricelli to step in at Goodison, with the Italian defender still claiming a move is a possibility despite Everton failing to step up their interest in the former Juventus and Fiorentina man last week. The 32-year-old is a free agent following the demotion of Fiorentina to Serie C, and can therefore join a new club even outside the transfer window. Meanwhile, Gary Naysmith has handed Blues boss David Moyes an early injury scare ahead of next Wednesday's game at Southampton after yesterday pulling out of the squad for Scotland's Euro 2004 qualifier in the Faroe Islands. The defender suffered an ankle injury in the defeat at Manchester City last Saturday and despite treatment throughout the week was deemed unfit to travel.
* DAVID MOYES has given youngster Keith Southern permission to play for Blackpool in their Worthington Cup game with Burnley. But Peter Clarke, who is also on loan at Bloomfield Road, will not be allowed to play to ensure he is not cup-tied.

Blues look to young players to step up
By Chris Wright, Daily Post
Sep 6 2002
COLIN HARVEY'S Everton under-19s will be keen to get their first win of the campaign at Bolton Wanderers tomorrow (kick-off 11am). The Blues youngsters have lost both their opening games to Coventry and West Ham and are looking for their first FA Premier Academy League points.
Although the opening fixture was a blow after a decent performance, last week at West Ham the Blues put in a lacklustre display. With key players from last year's squad - goalkeeper Andrew Pettinger and strikers Wayne Rooney and Michael Symes - missing for differing reasons, it has been a slow start. Academy director Ray Hall said: "Michael Symes wasn't playing but that is no excuse.
"We are probably suffering from two positions that we did quite well in last season. Goalkeeper Andrew Pettinger has left the club by mutual consent. "There has obviously been a gap left by Rooney moving up into the first team squad. But that is what our job is about, to move the lads on.
"The lads who are coming in have got to get used to the new level of football." Symes should not be missing for too long, Hall added: "Michael Symes picked up his injury playing in one of the reserve games earlier in the season, but I don't think he is far off a game." Alan Harper's under-17s on the other hand are in buoyant mood after a win and a draw from their opening games. And they will travel to Sheffield United full of confidence that they can maintain their progress.

Kings panic is storm in teacup
Fanscene By Mark O'Brien, Daily Post
Sep 6 2002
IT WAS interesting to see the panic caused this week by a story that essentially said Everton and their partners were struggling to raise their end of the finance for Kings Dock. Some took this 'revelation' to mean that the deal is dead while the club themselves insist that things are still on track. The truth, as is often the case, appears to be somewhere in between. Multi-million pound construction and development schemes are complicated affairs; especially when there are so many different parties involved. It would be naïve to think that a project of this size ever happens without a series of hitches and extended periods of negotiation. As a result of this focus on the Dock in the past week Paul Gregg has emerged from the shadows, with some believing that he should become chairman of the club. What exactly does he bring to the table though? Are some supporters right to claim does he have any interest in Everton Football Club other than as a bargaining chip to secure a venue for monster trucks and Disney On Ice? We've talked about the need for stability at the club for a long time so we need to think before clamouring for change for change's sake. David Moyes has been making plenty of changes lately as he tries to find a line-up which best suits the players at his disposal. Unfortunately, given the limitations of his squad he is still restricted to a certain amount of tinkering around the edges. This was no more apparent than at Maine Road where the luck swung both ways for a while as Nicolas Anelka's free-kick took a horrible deflection and then Shaun Wright-Phillips was harshly ordered off. At half-time it looked as if Everton were going to get at least a point from the match as they passed the ball around neatly. However, despite playing better than we usually do against 10 men we were ultimately undone by a world class goalkeeper and multi-million pound striker. At this moment in time we don't have matchwinners in the mould of Peter Schmeichel or Anelka so we need to keep working as a team, both in the way we defend and attack. The manager has stressed that he wants to see more goals from mid-field, something which would certainly alleviate the pressure on our hardworking, but less than confident looking, strikers. With a number of players such as Joseph Yobo and Nick Chadwick back playing in the reserves on Wednesday there may be a few more options available by the time we play Southampton next week. Hopefully we can repeat last season's performance and restore a measure of our pre-season confidence.

Yobo to be eased back in - Moyes
By Scott Mcleod, Daily Post
Sep 7 2002
DAVID MOYES will resist the temptation to rush Joseph Yobo into the Everton first team, despite the defender having regained full fitness after a sixweek injury lay-off. The Nigerian international made his long awaited return to action for the reserves in their match against Manchester United on Wednesday night. He completed the 90 minutes and is now back in contention for a first team place. But the Everton boss has made it clear he will show patience with the defender, who was signed from Marseille in a £1m deal which is set to rise to £5m. Moyes said: "Joseph played well on Wednesday and it was good to see him back. But he hasn't had time to get settled with his new team- mates because of his injury. "There are a lot of things a player has to adjust to when he moves to a new country. One important factor is just spending time with your new team-mates.
"Because he has been injured he has been deprived of that opportunity. He also needs to work on his fitness because his injury came shortly after he arrived back from his break following the World Cup. "In some cases, you have to be more patient with players, particularly from abroad. Joseph is only 21 and his age, more than his nationality is a factor in my thinking." Yobo could be available for Wednesday's trip to Southampton, but Moyes' comments suggest the Nigerian may have to settle for a place on the bench.

Moyes rules out swoop for Italian
By Jonathan McEvoy, Daily Post
Sep 9 2002
DAVID MOYES has ruled out a swoop for former Italian international Moreno Torricelli.
The Everton boss has brushed off mounting speculation he is poised to add the former Juventus defender to his Goodison squad, having sold Idan Tal to Rayo Vallecano last week. Torricelli, now back training with Fiorentina, spent last week on trial at Bellefield and is eligible to move although the transfer window has closed because he is a free agent. But Moyes is prepared to stick with his existing squad at least until January. Meanwhile, full-back Gary Naysmith has accepted the blame on behalf of the Blues' playing squad for Walter Smith's sacking last season. The Scotland international defender, signed by Smith from Hearts, said: "Walter and Archie Knox were great to work under and the players definitely got Walter the sack - and I include myself. "He was working with his hands tied. I was told he had about 60 transfers - including in and outs - and once you do the sums he only spent around £1million. "I didn't want Walter to be replaced and was sad to see him go. But at least I got the chance to see him just before he left to say thanks for giving me my chance in the Premiership. "We now have David Moyes in charge and although he is also Scottish, he's different from Walter."

Weir a scapegoat for Scots' debacle
Sep 9 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
DAVID WEIR will lead Everton out at Southampton on Wednesday despite reports in Scotland claiming he has played his last match for his country. Weir and central defensive partner Christian Dailly have been made scapegoats for Scotland's latest embarrassing result - a scrambled draw against the Faroe Islands. Coach Berti Vogts and his skipper Paul Lambert rounded furiously on Scotland's defenders at half time in Toftir. Afterwards Vogts confirmed: "There were some loud words said against our defenders. We asked them 'What happened? Why were there no tackles? Why were they ball watching and letting players run with the ball?' "I said what I had to say and the captain also had something to say. He was right to speak out - he is the captain. "I need that from Paul and from Barry Ferguson. They are my key players and they need to lead the team on and off the pitch. They had every right to be annoyed." Vogts ducked out of an answer when asked if any players would be excluded from his next squad. "I can't tell you that today," he said. "That is not my way." Weir and Dailly were Scotland's most capped players in Toftir, and German legend Gunther Netzer leapt on the bandwagon when he commented: "When I was a young player I feared Scottish defenders, but I would have no fear of Christian Dailly or David Weir." Weir has been Everton's most consistent defender since he arrived at Goodison from Hearts in February 1999 and signed a new contract this summer. Manager David Moyes would not be unhappy at the 32-year-old relinquishing his international responsibilities. Young Blues goalkeeper Andrew Pettinger, meanwhile, has left the club "by mutual consent." The 18-year-old has suffered from homesickness since leaving Scunthorpe United for a small compensation fee two years ago. Everton have retained the youngster's playing registration, but the suggestion is that the teenager does not want to pursue a career in professional football.

UEFA's cash carrots - but clubs must tow line
Sep 9 2002 By Peter Sharkey, Liverpool Echo
"MONEY is the most important thing in the world. It represents health, strength, honour, generosity and beauty . . ." It has been suggested that George Bernard Shaw's reflection adorns the office walls of European football club finance directors, particularly of those whose teams were involved in the Champions League draw. These are the privileged ones who sat through the clumsy plucking of coloured balls from oversized Pyrex dishes and basked in the warm glow of the Champions League lustre. This season's competition has a total of nearly half a billion pounds on offer in the form of bonus payments to the 32 sides that made it through to the first group stage. The four Premiership sides are guaranteed a minimum of £13m each for completing their first group games, widening the financial canyon between them and the rest. Facts like this make it easier to understand why the scramble for a place at the most elevated and lucrative of top tables is so intense. For some, like Celtic, the preliminary round defeat to Basel represented a financial disaster, exemplified by the relatively paltry payment of £68,000 paid by UEFA to domestic champions who have failed to make it into the Champions League group stages. The compensation of the UEFA Cup safety net merely amplifies the widening financial differential between it and Europe's top club competition.
From a financial perspective, there are only two games in town: the Champions League and the Premier League. UEFA will generate at least £478m from this year's Champions League, the vast majority of which, £362m, will be distributed to the 32 qualifiers. Meanwhile, the English clubs retain the comparative luxury of television receipts - for the time being at least. Sky will pay £367m this season for the right to broadcast the Premiership and four clubs - Arsenal, Liverpool, Newcastle and Manchester United - will get a significant bite of the domestic and European cherries.
Events of the past six months have culminated in a dramatic change for the football industry The realisation that broadcasters will not come to the rescue finally jettisoned any prospect of a breakaway European Super League. Broadcasters throughout the continent have realised they cannot continue to sanction colossal payments to football clubs while their own profits collapse.
In short, UEFA has won the financial battle because, ultimately, they make the rules. From transfer windows to the licensing of clubs; if clubs don't abide by the rules, they cannot play in UEFA competitions and the stark fact is that they need the fix of revenue flow from mainland Europe.
There was great satisfaction at UEFA headquarters in Geneva when the elite group of G14 football clubs announced that, reluctantly, they were prepared to accept the governing body's changes to the Champions League from next season. This is the group that less than 12 months ago was advocating a European Super League financed by Spanish and French broadcasters. A league that paid its members with an annual retainer of £28m and rewarded them with a £2m bonus each time they won a match. Now, despite the enlargement of this elite body following the accession of Arsenal, Valencia, Olympique Lyonnais and Bayer Leverkusen to its ranks, the fact is that no clubs, least of all the English quartet with fingers in two pies, are about to relinquish the safety of UEFA's embrace. If that means licensing and transfer windows which hurt smaller domestic rivals, then too bad. For the foreseeable future, football clubs will have to tow the line

Sharp: Lay off scapegoat Weir
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 10 2002
EVERTON legend Graeme Sharp believes under-fire David Weir has been made a scapegoat for Scotland's demise because he plies his trade in England. The Blues defender and West Ham's Christian Dailly have been targeted for criticism following Scotland's latest international embarrassment, the 2-2 draw with the Faroe Islands on Saturday. Manager Berti Vogts, whose run of five straight defeats ended with the point against the part-timers, publicly blamed his defence for Scotland's shocking start in Toftir and hinted they would be dropped from his next squad. But last night former Blues striker and fellow Scottish international Sharp backed Weir - once described by former Goodison chief Walter Smith as his "best ever signing" - to silence the critics who have seized on Vogts' comments. Sharp said: "The criticism is coming after the debacle against the Faroe Islands and Davie seems to be the one taking the stick. "It's not nice receiving criticism and I know myself from the Scottish scene that they do give more stick to the Anglos. "The criticism is unjust and if you asked Evertonians they would say David Weir has been outstanding." Weir has been an ever-present for Vogts since he replaced Craig Brown and Sharp believes the 31-year-old, twice Everton's Player of the Year since his £250,000 arrival from Hearts in 1999, has proved his international pedigree beyond doubt in the Premiership. He said: "Pundits in the Scottish newspapers - Mark Hateley among them - have criticised him but they don't see David Weir week in, week out performing at Everton. "You just have to look at the awards he has picked up over the last few years and nobody would argue about what he has brought to Everton Football Club." Sharp added: "It just one of those things and with the game against the Faroe Islands they have to look for a scapegoat and this time it's Davie, but I still believe he is a quality footballer and a quality international footballer. "When things go wrong you pick on defenders and Christian Dailly is another getting stick and these things happen in football and I am sure Davie is experienced enough to not let him bother him. "He is playing in one of the best leagues in the world and his reputation speaks for itself and you can speak to many players and managers in the Premier League who will say since he has been at Everton he has been an outstanding success." Weir reported back at Bellefield yesterday with no injury worries ahead of tomorrow's trip to Southampton, as did Mark Pembridge and Thomas Gravesen. Pembridge played the full 90 minutes for Wales in their European Championship qualifying victory over Finland and is set for an instant return.

Draw preserves boy Blues' unbeaten start
By Chris Wright, Daily Post
Sep 10 2002
EVERTON under-17s continued their unbeaten start to the FA Premier Academy League season as they drew 1-1 at Sheffield United on Saturday. Gavin Lynch scored his first goal of the season to give the Blues five points from their first three fixtures. The 16-year-old forward from Maghull turned a Sheffield defender in the box after collecting midielder Joseph Jones' ball, before rifling a fine effort into the top corner. Coach Alan Harper said: "It was a very good goal from Gavin, but it was not the best of performances on the whole. "The lads played well in bits. It wasn't a full 90 minutes of football. They played well for half-an-hour in the first half, then not so well for 15 minutes and the same again in the second half. "It was a bit inconsistent on the whole, but last year they would have got beaten in a game like that, so in that sense it wasn't bad." It has not been such a good start for Colin Harvey's under-19s, who lost their third game in a row at Bolton. After last week's defeat at West Ham the Blues had been hoping to bounce back. But it has been a frustrating start to the season for the Blues' youngsters after last year's highs in the FA Youth Cup. Missing the cutting edge up front that Wayne Rooney provided, they have not been able to turn possession into goals. And with Michael Symes also out injured, the Blues are finding it hard to score. England U17s midfielder Scot Brown missed one opportunity and defender Robert Southern saw his header cleared off the line. But the home side hit back after the break and scored the only goal of the game near the end.
Harvey said: "It wasn't a very good performance. It wasn't a very good game to be honest. Neither side played particularly well but they deserved it because they created more chances than us.
"They put us under pressure late on and if you do that you are likely to get something - which they did. It was just a poor performance and it followed on from a similar one last week down at West Ham." But Academy director Ray Hall added: "It was obviously a very disappointing result for us because I thought we at least deserved a draw, but Bolton were getting closer towards the end.
"We are finding it difficult to score at the moment and can't keep a clean sheet and it is something we must improve on."

Weir strong enough to bounce back
Sep 10 2002 By Kevin Ratcliffe, Liverpool Echo
CLUB v country will be uppermost in David Moyes' mind again tonight - even though all of his internationals have returned safely from their trips around Europe at the weekend.
It isn't just injuries sustained on international duty that club bosses have to worry about. They also have to think about the tiring affects of trans-continental travel on their players and the psychological effects of what those players may have experienced in the previous few days.
Mark Pembridge (pictured), for example, will probably have a spring in his step this week.
A trip to Finland is only a couple of hours away, and he was an influential part of an excellent away win by Wales. But David Weir on the other hand, has to bounce back after an embarrassing result for Scotland in the Faroe Islands, a scoreline many Scottish papers made him the scapegoat for.
David's experienced enough not to let that bother him - Graeme Sharp and Andy Gray used to tell me that the Scottish press was always ultra-critical - but his confidence levels will be far from at their peak for tomorrow's trip to Southampton. At least Toftir was not a daunting distance for the Scots to travel back after their 2-2 draw. It's a different set-up entirely to when I was in the same international team as Mark Hughes in the 1980s. Back then myself, Neville Southall and Pat Van Den Hauwe regularly represented Wales and we would have to drive back to the North-West from Heathrow or Gatwick airports - usually in the small hours of the morning - after an away international. Howard Kendall was responsible for knocking that on the head. He told the Welsh FA that unless travel arrangements were more satisfactory we would not be released, and despite a few grumbles from the Welsh FA about extra travel expenses, he got his way. Today there are usually chauffeur driven limousines waiting to whisk international stars from the airport situated nearest to their homes.
Gather the points before October
ON paper, fixtures against Southampton and Middlesbrough do not look like the most daunting of tasks for Everton. But in reality they are extremely tricky tests as David Moyes' side tries to find its feet this season. Southampton is one of those venues Everton often seem to do well at, but it doesn't mean that it is an easy place to visit. Then after that game Steve McClaren's newly reshaped Middlesbrough come to Goodison, fresh from an impressive performance at Old Trafford.
Both games are tough, but the way the fixtures have panned out this season Everton need to pick up points from both. October heralds a desperately tough run of fixtures for the Blues, Manchester United, Arsenal, then trips to notoriously unhappy hunting grounds like West Ham and Leeds.
The Blues will want points on the board before they contemplate trying to scrape a few results from that group of games.

Joe's jinx
Sep 10 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
JOSEPH YOBO'S Everton injury nightmare has been extended by another freak training ground injury.
The Nigerian defender (left) was finally expected to make his Blues' debut at Southampton tomorrow. But a ball kicked at his problem ankle has seen the joint swell up again.
"At the moment Joseph is a big doubt which is obviously a big disappointment," said manager David Moyes. "He got struck yesterday with a ball on the ankle which he may have just tweaked. We'll have to see how he responds to treatment." This latest blow for Yobo could not have come at a worse time for the Blues. Alan Stubbs is suspended for the trip to St Mary's, Peter Clarke is currently on loan at Blackpool and David Unsworth, who started his career in central defence, will be needed to cover at left-back for the injured Gary Naysmith and Alessandro Pistone. The absences could mean a debut for Li Wei Feng. The battered Blues also have problems with their last line of defence.
Richard Wright is definitely out again with a bruised arm, while Steve Simonsen, who deputised at Manchester City, has a slight hamstring strain. If he fails to shake off that problem Paul Gerrard would return between the posts, leaving Moyes to choose between youth team keeper Alex Cole, or goalkeeping coach Chris Woods for a place on the substitutes' bench. With Duncan Ferguson also still absent, injuries are beginning to pose a familiar problem for the club - but Moyes is refusing to dwell on them. "We have a few problems, but we also have plenty of other players fit and raring to go," he said. "Gary Naysmith will definitely be out tomorrow, but he had a scan on his ankle last night which proved negative. "We think the problem is deep-seated bruising. Pistone has come back three times now and felt his hamstring again each time, so he has been told to rest the injury completely now and hope that this will clear it up." The Newcastle-Everton game has been switched from Saturday, November 30, to Sunday, December 1 to accommodate Sky pay-per-view.

Gazza set for Kiwi adventure
Sep 10 2002 Liverpool Echo
PAUL GASCOIGNE'S agent Ian Elliott is adamant that the Football Kingz have offered the former England midfielder a deal despite the New Zealand club insisting they have not been in contact.
Elliott is quoted in the New Zealand Herald as saying: "We got a fax from the club in New Zealand, we waited, and over the last seven days we've said 'now he's ready and he wants to come over and play the games'." The Kingz, New Zealand's only professional football club, play in the Australian National Soccer League (NSL) campaign. But the Auckland club's chief executive Chris Turner had earlier told the Herald: "We have not signed, and are not signing Paul Gascoigne." Turner claimed the club was offered a "so-called superstar" two months ago to make some guest appearances but would not say whether that player was Gascoigne. Elliott said the Kingz approached him through an English contact in New Zealand who said the club was interested in having Gascoigne for three or four games. "He's certainly interested in it and he's quite looking forward to it, if it comes off," he said. "We've got the parameters of the offer, but we were told they now wanted to wait six weeks which probably wouldn't be any good for us."

Moss gobbles up Toffee
September 11, 2002
Manchester Evening News
DAVE Moss has moved quickly to fill the gap left by Lee Glover, signing 20-year-old left-sided forward David Eaton from Everton on non-contract terms. Eaton, however, is unlikely to make the starting line-up for the first round Worthington Cup tie against Barnsley tonight (Wednesday).
Moss may want to keep the same side that beat Bristol Rovers on Sunday, with his preferred midfield of Chris Byrne, Danny Whitaker and Chris Priest finally able to play consecutive games together. Moss knows, however, that he must continue to keep golden boots Byrne under wraps and he sensibly brought him off after an hour at the weekend as he still struggles to regain full fitness after a succession of injury worries. Michael Welch, the under-18 Irish centre-back, will play against his old club and, alongside Whitaker, is beginning to attract the attention of scouts.
Barnsley have been in free-fall since their Premiership days and are now struggling in the bottom half of Division Two. They will be without former Manchester City duo Chris Morgan and Lee Crookes, who remain sidelined with long-term injuries. Macclesfield have risen to the challenge presented by the Worthington Cup, despatching both Stoke and Bolton and giving Middlesbrough a nasty scare in the last three years.

Back problems
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 11 2002
DEFENCE has proven Everton's accident black spot this season but it is the absence of wanted men not the arrival of unwanted mistakes that is the biggest concern for David Moyes tonight.
At Southampton last season the victory that assured the Blues of their Premiership status was secured by a full-back, Steve Watson. On the eve of their return visit defenders have again hogged the limelight - but for the wrong reasons with Joseph Yobo leading the way. The Nigerian international was almost certain to end the agonising wait for his Premiership debut at St Mary's Stadium in place of the suspended Alan Stubbs. So far the 21-year-old, who arrived at Goodison in a £5m-rated deal after an impressive World Cup, has played just two reserve games since his first appearance in Royal Blue against Queens Park was curtailed after just 24 minutes by an ankle injury.
Speed, or rather the lack of it, was identified by boss Moyes as an essential addition to the Everton rearguard this season and the former Marseille man was supposed to be the answer. But so far his arrival has signalled only frustration for all concerned and that is set to continue after he aggravated the injury for a second time in training on Monday. "Joseph would have had a chance but rocked his ankle again in training," explained Moyes. "It is the same ankle, which was tweaked when he blocked a shot. It is very frustrating because we'd worked with him a lot and he was ready to come into the team." As well as Yobo, Gary Naysmith and Richard Wright, Alessandro Pistone is a long-term injury worry with hamstring problems, while Everton's build-up has not been helped by the criticism heaped on David Weir after his part in Scotland's Euro debacle in the Faroe Islands. It means that Watson - who has not played all season with a hamstring worry - could be drafted straight into the side at St Mary's with David Unsworth reverting to full-back and the prospect of untried Chinese defender Li Weifeng getting closer to first-team action. Moyes has been quick to defend Weir, Everton and Scotland's most experienced defender, who was criticised after the 2-2 draw in the Faroes. "I'd need to be sure who has actually been criticising David, because people who have seen him play for Everton know he's been fantastic," he said. "He has been great for us and maybe you should look at the circumstances of what happened to Scotland before you make any comments."
Moyes is more concerned now with getting Everton's second win of the season after they lost their unbeaten record against 10-man Manchester City 10 days ago, and he insists individual errors will not become an Achilles heel this season. He said: "Against Manchester City we conceded a deflected goal that could have happened to anyone and Gary Naysmith made an individual error. But our away form has been fine. "We had a great win at Sunderland, and then were beaten at City where I felt we deserved more from the game. "We started the season reasonably well, so the break after losing at City has been frustrating. "I'd have liked to play again much quicker. The City defeat hurt. To end up losing 3-1 was very disappointing and now the lads are fired up for this one."

Ferguson fears
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 11 2002
DAVID MOYES faces the first real injury crisis of his Everton reign tonight as fears mount Duncan Ferguson will never win his latest fitness fight. The Blues head for Southampton with a host of defensive problems as Joseph Yobo, Richard Wright, Gary Naymith, Alan Stubbs and Alessandro Pistone are all absent while Steve Simonsen is doubtful. But Moyes' long term concern rests with Ferguson - who is heading towards a make-or-break spell to save his career. The big striker is STILL unable to train properly more than four weeks after having a cortisone injection to ease the pain in his lower back. Moyes admitted his medical team have considered giving Ferguson a second and final injection - an option rejected by the player - and that surgery is not viable, which would leave the forward with no choice but to play through the pain barrier or call time on his career.
The Blues boss insists Ferguson's playing days are not numbered yet - but forthcoming reserve team games such as next week's clash at Birmingham could determine otherwise. Moyes said: "It is still a concern. We did consider giving Duncan a second injection this week. He said no. He is going to get on with the training. "A second injection would be as far as we could go with that injury and I don't think there is any surgery for this injury either." He added: "It is frustrating. It has taken longer than we first thought and I couldn't put a timescale on how long it will take." "Duncan feels comfortable and has done some training in the last day or two but he is still lacking in fitness. He can train some days but not others. "He will need to play some reserve games before we know if he is ready and we don't have another one until next week." Ferguson made only 20 starts last season, scoring eight goals, and will face a crucial decision on his future if he fails to come through next Wednesday's reserve test at St Andrews. Moyes, meanwhile, faces another headache over his goalkeeping plans at St Mary's tonight after Wright was ruled out for a third consecutive game. Two scans have confirmed the £3.5m keeper did not fracture his hand in the win at Sunderland but the 24-year-old is still troubled by the injury and is also set to miss the weekend visit of Middlesbrough. And with Simonsen struggling with a slight hamstring strain, the Blues boss will be forced to put youth team keeper Alex Cole or goalkeeping coach Chris Woods on the bench if Paul Gerrard starts.
"It is very disappointing for us and Richard," admitted Moyes. "We were worried that he'd suffered a small fracture but while that is not the case he is still feeling pain. "He can't do all the work required and I hope he is not going to be out for too long."
*EVERTON'S visit to Newcastle, initially scheduled for Saturday, November 30, will now be played on Sunday, December 1, due to pay-per-view demands and will kick off at 2pm.

Former Blue Kanchelskis in line for debut
By Richard Gibson, Daily Post
Sep 11 2002
FORMER Everton winger Andrei Kanchelskis is in contention to make his debut for Southampton against his old club at the St Mary's Stadium. Kanchelskis is expected to figure at some stage after joining on a free transfer last week as Southampton bid for their first Barclaycard Premiership win of the season. Southampton manager Gordon Strachan is facing the dilemma of whether or not to risk key defender Claus Lundekvam against Everton tonight. Lundekvam, a regular in Strachan's team since he took charge from Stuart Gray 11 months ago, has not played since damaging his hamstring in the 3-0 defeat at Liverpool 17 days ago. But the centre-back was included in Norway's squad for their 2-2 draw against Denmark last Saturday and successfully came through his first full training session at the start of the week. Swedish international Michael Svensson has partnered Paul Williams in the heart of the defence in Lundekvam's absence. But Strachan could decide to reunite his first-choice defensive pairing with Svensson ruled out of Saturday's game at West Brom as he serves a onematch ban after being sent off at Tottenham. Strachan said: "Claus is an important player who has been excellent for us since I came but it's important that we don't rush him back too soon. "The last thing that you want to do is bring a player back early and risk the problem getting worse. "Michael has done well since he came into the team and he was unlucky to be sent off at Tottenham. "We haven't won this season but we've only played four games and I've been pleased with the attitude and the performances that my players have produced so far. "We've played some excellent football at times without getting what we've deserved and the thing that we're now working on improving is our end product in the final third of the pitch." Swedish World Cup star Anders Svensson is expected to overcome a chest infection to continue in midfield while Latvian striker Marian Pahars is hoping for a recall in attack after being dropped to the bench for the Tottenham defeat.

Wright ruled out for month
Sep 11 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
EVERTON are ready to rule out Richard Wright for the rest of the month, as injuries have wrecked David Moyes' preparations for tonight's game at Southampton. And striker Duncan Ferguson will face a make or break reserve run-out at Birmingham next Wednesday, as fears grow for his long term future. Problems at both ends of the pitch have hit the Blues' preparations for tonight's Premiership match (7.45pm). Wright, Gary Naysmith, Alessandro Pistone and Duncan Ferguson are out of the St Mary's clash through injury, Alan Stubbs is suspended and Joseph Yobo will have a late fitness test. But Wright's bruised arm could see him sit out further games against Middlesbrough, Aston Villa and Fulham. A second scan has confirmed that the goalkeeper has not sustained a break, but the injury is in a tender area of the elbow joint and the Blues have been warned not to push the player back too quickly for fear of causing long term damage. "Richard has done some goalkeeping work in training," explained Moyes "but because of the pain and the way you handle the ball we can't take the chance of him playing a game just yet. It's been a big disappointment, especially for Richard." Paul Gerrard is standing by to start his first game since April as Steve Simonsen struggles with a hamstring strain.

Southampton 1, Everton 0 (D,Post)
By Jonathan McEvoy at St Mary's
Sep 12 2002
NO use looking for scapegoats. Yes, Marian Pahars showed that while cheating may not pay, simulation can, by theatrically tumbling to the ground to win and score the matchwinning penalty.
Referee Steve Bennett swallowed the deception and pointed to the spot, thus condemning David Moyes' team to their second defeat of the season. You can add the fact Everton were cruelly hit by a host of injuries, but the real culprits for the Blues' failure to convert their clear superiority into a victory lies primarily with those in Royal Blue shirts - for failing to put away their chances. A familiar old story, of course. The tone was set from the off as Everton carved out the first real chance of a bright start to the game when Tomasz Radzinski's perseverance in pressurising keeper Paul Jones won a corner on the left. Thomas Gravesen floated the ball in and David Weir couldn't find direction as he sent a free header wide with four minutes on the clock. Southampton were causing problems early on through the surging runs of leftback Wayne Bridge but Everton's makeshift defence rode out the danger, with Weir outstanding throughout. Rory Delap unleashed a low long-range effort that looked as if it was squirming wide of the post but the recalled Paul Gerrard was taking no risks and helped it round. Bridge, again, had Everton hearts fluttering only to see his well-struck freekick spiral off target after Weir had harshly been adjudged to have fouled James Beattie. The odd scare apart, Everton were more than matching Southampton blow for blow. And Radzinski should have put them ahead in the 21st minute. Kevin Campbell threaded a perfectly-weighted pass to the Canadian, who wriggled free to find the goal firmly within his sights. Yet, eight yards out and with Jones obligingly going to ground early, the lively Radzinski conspired to blaze horribly over the bar.
Campbell then saw an opening smothered by the keeper a minute later while at the other end Brett Ormerod's ambitious bicycle kick ballooned way over the goal. But it was Everton taking the upper hand much to the animated annoyance of the hyperactive Gordon Strachan, who finally snapped.
After a long, finger-wagging protest to the referee he was ordered down the tunnel but what he saw from the stand will have done little to calm his fraying nerves. And Radzinski, profligate earlier, was unlucky when Jones spread himself effectively to beat out a low shot after the former Anderlecht man had been supplied by Thomas Gravesen's radar pass from the inside left channel. Everton have displayed resilience under Moyes this season. At Birmingham, they rallied from a goal down after Alan Stubbs was red-carded and they were full of fight once more. But, while Moyes was the happier manager at halftime, the old Achilles heel - the lack of menace and thrust in putting away chances - remains a cause for concern. Yes, Radzinski was sharp, harrying and hassling a rickety Saints defence, but he ended the game without a goal to show for his industry while nothing was coming off for the out-of-sorts Campbell. If Moyes needed any reminding how difficult a task managing Everton can be, the current injury list provided it. His predecessor, Walter Smith, once had an entire 11-strong team sidelined in his penultimate seas on. Moyes' predicament, although not so crippling, had shorn him of seven frontline players. And that they coped so well without reward makes defeat doubly galling. He was forced to name his third goalkeeper of a season just five games old after Steve Simonsen joined Richard Wright as an earlyseason casualty. Gerrard received the call and didn't let his boss down. Defender Joseph Yobo continued his exile with a damaged ankle. The sum of the Nigerian international's contribution is two reserve games and 24 minutes of a pre- season friendly against Queens Park since arriving over the summer in a £5m move. But his absence cleared the way for the enforced selection of Chinese international Li Weifeng to make a respectable debut at the heart of defence, while Stubbs missed out.
Defenders Gary Naysmith and Alessandro Pistone and, of course, Duncan Ferguson also sat it out.
But Everton, showing the steel Moyes has instilled in them, were determined to show that although they were depleted they were not downcast. Gravesen nearly had Jones redfaced at the start of the second half with a fizzing shot from the edge of the box. It bounced awkwardly and nearly foxed the keeper, who got enough behind the ball and was relieved to see it bounce behind to safety.
Whatever the enraged Strachan exhorted his troops to do in the second half fell on deaf ears. Everton were unsettling the Saints, who seemed unlikely to notch their first win of the campaign.
In a bid to change the course of game, Strachan made a bold double switch in the 56th minute, bringing on former Blue Andrei Kanchelskis and Pahars before drafting Paul Telfer into the action nine minutes later. By then Everton had squandered another chance to prise their way into the lead. Radzinski charged free and poked a low shot at Jones. The Wales international stopper blocked the effort, it rebounded to Campbell but the number nine agonisingly turned the ball into the side-netting. As if Everton didn't have enough chances to rue by then, a swift counter attack was denied the climax it deserved when Li Tie only half-connected with the goal in front of him after good work involving Radzinski and Campbell. How costly those misses were was rammed home in the 72nd minute in controversial circumstances. The towering Weir was penalised for a foul on Pahars. It looked for all the world that the Latvian had gone down too readily but referee Bennett pointed to the spot. Weir was eventually booked once the melee of players who surrounded the referee to register their protests had been separated. Pahars, desperate to make his 'dive' count, stepped up to score his second of the season as Everton now looked down the barrel. Everton, though, refused to lie down and continued to batter the home defence. Moyes forlornly played his ace, bringing on Rooney with 10 minutes left and then Rodrigo in place of David Unsworth. But it was too late.
SOUTHAMPTON: Jones, Dodd (Telfer 65), Bridge, Marsden, Lundekvam, Williams, Beattie, A Svensson (Pahars 56), Ormerod ( Kanchelskis 56), Delap, Fernandes. Subs: Niemi, M Svensson.
EVERTON: Gerrard, Hibbert, Unsworth ( Rodrigo 83), Weir, Weifeng, Alexandersson (Rooney 80), Gravesen, Tie, Pembridge, Campbell, Radzinski. Subs: Watson, Rodrigo, Gemmill, Linderoth.
BOOKINGS: Southampton's Marsden, Beattie and Pahars; Everton's Gravesen and Weir and Weifeng.
REFEREE: S Bennett.
ATT: 29,190.

Southampton 1, Everton 0 (Echo)
By David Prentice At St Mary'S, Liverpool Echo
Sep 12 2002
ANGRY Everton didn't know which way to turn to apportion blame. There was Latvian striker Marian Pahars, who blatantly dived over David Weir's challenge to 'earn' a match-winning penalty.
There was gullible referee Steve Bennett, who was far too easily conned. And there was Everton's awful luck with injuries which saw Chinese defender Li Wei Feng handed an enforced Premiership debut and a substitutes' bench with no recognised goalkeeper. But really the Blues only had themselves to blame for recklessly tossing away a match they had dominated from start to finish.
For the second away match in succession David Moyes' men carved out a fistful of goalscoring chances. Not just six yard scrambles and long range pot-shots either. But gilt-edged, gaping, miss- that- if- you- dare opportunities. They dared to miss them all. That feeble finishing cost them three points at Southampton last night. Southampton were second best throughout. Everton defended respectably, dominated the midfield, but up front squandered dreadfully. But a striker's prime responsibility is to score goals, and the day must be drawing nearer for Wayne Rooney to be handed his chance in a recognised 4-4-2 formation. Ironically Radzinski had made a lively and determined start, but an old failing came back to haunt him at a significant stage of the game. With 20 minutes gone, and Everton beginning to open up a nervous side still seeking its first win of the season, he played a one-two with Campbell to perfection, darting into the penalty box to collect his strike-partner's pass. The goal gaped invitingly, goalkeeper Jones even went to ground early - but from just eight yards he blazed a shot over the crossbar. A minute later Campbell turned ponderously onto another half-chance and another opportunity went begging. Pace has never been a problem for Radzinski, though, and in the 38th minute that asset, coupled with a supremely imaginative and effected pass by Gravesen gave him another clear run at goal. This time it was down the left hand channel and he delayed his shot long enough to slip the ball neatly past the keeper. His composure was not rewarded, however, with Jones' trailing leg unconsciously diverting the ball behind for a corner. They weren't the only chances missed. David Weir mistimed an fourth minute header wide and Alexandersson turned and hooked a volley wide. Such was Everton's dominance that Gordon Strachan unleashed one of his typical touchline rants, bizarrely inviting a policeman over to bear witness before he started to berate referee. If the Saints' boss was as remonstrative with his players during the halftime interval, they did not respond. Everton started the second period as energetically and effectively as they had played much of the first, and Jones had to scuttle low to his left to parry a goalbound Thomas Gravesen drive. In the 52nd minute Radzinski homed in on goal again, this time from an impossible angle on the left. With no support in the centre he had little option but to try and beat the keeper on his near post, and Jones proved up to the task.
Strachan had seen enough and in the 55th minute he made two changes, introducing the pace and the precocity of Kanchelskis and Pahars. The Ukrainian was anonymous, but the Latvian made a significant impact. Everton still dominated, but in a rare breakaway down the inside-left channel Pahars headed for the sanctuary of the visitors' penalty box. When he got there he toppled dramatically over the covering Weir. The St Mary's press box was perfectly positioned to witness the fraudulence of the claim, but referee Bennett was not so well situated - and he needlessly pointed to the spot. Weir has not had a good week, pilloried by the Scottish press for his performance in the Faroe Islands. But his display last night was typical of his Everton career - excellent - and it was the harshest possible end to his week. He remonstrated angrily with Pahars - and was booked for his troubles. The Latvian, unconcerned, converted confidently, sending Gerrard the wrong way.
Everton still should have secured at least a point. Radzinski's pace took him clear again. Jones spread himself well to block, then Campbell steered the rebound wide with his left foot from 12 yards. Li Tie hooked an unmarked leftfooted volley wide from 18 yards and Gravesen saw a 25-yard piledriver deflected inches wide of Jones' left hand post. The 91st minute summed up Everton's night. Tony Hibbert raced away down the right, crossed low into the six-yard box and Jones flung himself at the ball. It ricocheted wildly into Kevin Campbell's shins, but flashed a foot the wrong side of the goalpost.
SOUTHAMPTON (4-4-2): Jones, Dodd (Telfer 65 mins), Lundekvam, Williams, Bridge, Fernandes, Delap, A Svensson (Kanchelskis 55 mins), Marsden, Ormerod (Pahars 55 mins), Beattie. Unused substitutes: Niemi, M Svensson.
EVERTON (4-4-2): Gerrard, Hibbert, Weir, Feng, Unsworth (Rodrigol 83 mins), Alexandersson (Rooney 79 mins), Gravesen, Tie, Pembridge, Campbell, Radzinski. Unused substitutes: Watson, Gemmill, Linderoth. Referee: Steve Bennett.
Bookings: Marsden (42 mins) foul, Gravesen (45 mins) foul, Beattie (58 mins) foul, Weir (71 mins) foul, Pahars (89 mins) foul, Feng (92 mins) dissent.
GOAL: Pahars penalty (71 mins) 1-0.

The Evertonian: Out Now
Sep 12 2002 icLiverpool
IT'S September already and we've got another cracking issue lined up for you this month.
* Not only do we have this year's official team photo for you to pin up wherever you fancy, but we continue our series of 100 Greatest Everton photos with instalment number two. * We are also offering you the chance to nominate where you think our 12 official Everton plaques should be erected as we continue to celebrate becoming the first club to achieve 100 years of top flight football.
And, of course, there's a whole lot more as well . . .
* With Wayne Rooney making all the headlines, one of our greatest ever servants gives an expert opinion on the best way to preserve that youthful potential. Howard Kendall knows what it's all about to be a young player. He's also played with the youngest player in Everton's history, Joe Royle. And last month he was at Goodison along with 40,000 others watching the latest Goodison youngster whom many hopes rest upon. Our former player and boss gives us a taste of what it's like to be one of such an elite group.
* Tomasz Radzinski has enjoyed a lively start to the season by anyone's standards. Scoring in his first game and threatening to do so in the others, the little striker already looks like he's put last season's injury-induced disappointments behind him. Raring to go, he gives us the run-down on his hopes for the season.
* The name of Sir Philip Carter is synonomous with Everton Football Club. He's been there during the good times and the bad. He's seen silverware, he's seen despair. With 100 years of top flight football on the clock this year, in a rare interview he recalls his own special memories after more than 60 years involved with the club.
* Clive Tyldesley has become the voice of ITV football but it was on Merseyside that his commentating career first took root. In the first of a new series canvassing opinions from the press, he pulls out a few Everton anecdotes picked up over the years to keep us entertained.
* And with Gary Ablett keeping us up to date on the Blues' youth set-up, not to mention a little more than Chinese whispers on our latest shirt sponsor, this month's Evertonian is a must for Blues everywhere...so what are you waiting for?

Strachan anger at touchline fracas
Sep 12 2002
GORDON Strachan is confident he will avoid an FA misconduct charge despite being banished from the touchline by referee Steve Bennett after a furious row with fourth official Steve Dunn during Southampton's first Premiership win of the season against Everton. Saints boss Strachan will, in fact, go on the offensive rather than the backfoot later today by writing to the Referees Association demanding an apology from Bristol official Dunn, whom he claims does not know the rules relating to restrictions of coaching in designated technical areas during matches. Strachan insisted: " I was sent off because the fourth official didn't know the rule. New rules passed this summer saying you can have two people in the technical area box so long as only one does the coaching.
"I was told to sit down but it wasn't me coaching it was Dennis Rofe. I was standing at the back with the fourth official. It is embarrassing when officials don't know the rules and I want an apology."

Moyes fury at spot-kick
Sep 12 2002 By Jonathan McEvoy, Daily Post
DAVID MOYES took a swipe at referee Steve Bennett after Everton fell to their second successive Premiership defeat amid controversy. The Blues dominated last night's St Mary's Stadium clash only to be denied a point by the award of a 73rd-minute penalty, harshly given against David Weir for a foul on Marian Pahars. The Latvian striker crashed to the floor soon after being introduced as a second-half substitute, although there appeared only minimial contact, before stepping up to convert the penalty. Moyes said pointedly: "I've watched a video of the incident. You watch it - and I'd be surprised if any of you agree with the decision." Everton were unable to make their overwhelming pressure tell in a game that also saw Southampton boss Gordon Strachan sent off.
Moyes added: "We played very well and made a lot of chances and should have taken them. Tomasz Radzinski and Kevin Campbell both had opportunities but they carved them out and played well.
"If we play that well, we will be okay. "David Weir was outstanding. He had a chance but was commanding for us." Weir, booked for conceding the penalty, was partnered in central defence by Chinese international Li Weifeng, making his debut. And Moyes was pleased with his makeshift team, saying: "The whole team played well. "With Weifeng, it can be a little bit harder coming in at centreback. There's an element of risk but he and the team did okay." Gordon Strachan said he would demand an apology from fourth official Steve Dunn after being sent packing from the touchline by referee Bennett in the first half. "I'm writing to the Referees' Association and I want an apology because I was sent off for knowing the rules better than the fourth official," he fumed.
Strachan, who appeared to hurl abuse at the Everton bench in the 22nd minute when Saints' Wayne Bridge was fouled, explained: "We had two of us, myself and Dennis Rofe, in our technical box but that's allowed under new rules provided only one of us coaches. "The fourth official told me to sit down but I told him he didn't know the rules. "I admit I argued aggressively with him but at no time did I swear and I called a policeman onto the scene to check my language. I'll probably get a letter (from the FA) but I think I'm going to be all right if you look at the rules.": Referee Bennett, inevitably, was called in by Dunn and eventually banished Strachan from the touchline.

Everton set for revenge mission
Academy Football By Chris Wright, Daily Post
Sep 13 2002
EVERTON under-17s have the chance to gauge how far they have come when they take on Birmingham City at Netherton in the FA Premier Academy League tomorrow (kick-off 12.30pm).
This time last year Alan Harper's squad was made up almost entirely of schoolboys and lost 4-1 to the Midlanders. But a year's experience and the graduation to full-time scholars has seen the young Blues start this season unbeaten. Harper said: "They have made a good start to the season. Last year we were beaten 4-1 by Birmingham so it will be a good test. "It is a chance to see how far they have come. The draw at Sheffield was a good result and last year we would have lost that game. So they are benefitting from the experience from last season." There are still one or two schoolboys in this year's line-up and Harper has been impressed with their attitude. Striker Paul Hopkins, who came on as a substitute in last season's FA Youth Cup final second leg at Villa Park, has done well in the first two matches and has already been promoted to Colin Harvey's under-19s. And defender Mark Hughes has also been catching the eye. Harper added: "We have a couple of schoolboys in again. Centre-half Mark Hughes has done smashing. He had played for me as well last year, so he knows what it is about and he did all right last Saturday. "Paul Hopkins played in the first two matches, but he played for Colin last week, because Colin has been struggling with forwards this season." Harper should have a full squad for Birmingham's visit. While the U17s have started well Harvey's U19s have lost all three of their fixtures and will be looking for an upturn in fortunes tomorrow at Huddersfield Town. Harvey said: "The last couple of weeks have been the same. We haven't performed particularly well since the first game. "They have got to start looking like scoring goals and looking like they can stop conceding goals and do it as soon as possible." With Wayne Rooney in the first team squad and Michael Symes injured, the Blues are clearly in need of more goal threat, but Harvey is not sure their recent disappointing form is all down to their lack of firepower. He added: "I've no idea whether it is due to Michael Symes being out. We won't know if that is the problem until he comes back. And then if there is an improvement you can say that is what has happened."

Vogts puts the boot in
Report By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 13 2002
DAVID WEIR'S woeful week took another turn for the worse last night when he was publicly condemned by his international boss Berti Vogts. Everton's vice-captain endured widespread criticism following the Faroe Islands debacle and saw his outstanding display against Southampton soured by the harsh penalty award that cost the Blues Wednesday's game. But this latest setback could have the most repercussions for Weir, who may well consider his international future following Vogts' stinging attack. Pressure is piling on the German north of the border as a result of the abysmal record that has shamed Scotland since he took control - Saturday's 2-2 draw with the Faroe part-timers was his first game without defeat in six matches. And yesterday he desperately attempted to shift the blame on to two of his most senior players with West Ham's Christian Dailly also on the receiving end. Vogts said: "We have a group of 28 players who have sufficient quality for the national team, no more than that. We must carry on with these people. "The older players, like Christian Dailly and David Weir, who both play in England, have already disappointed me. They were to blame for the first two goals, it wasn't the youngsters." Despite his troubles in Scotland, Weir has twice been named Everton's Player of the Year since his bargain £250,000 move from Hearts in 1999 and was in fine form again in Wednesday's defeat by the Saints. The 31-year-old was penalised for a foul on Marian Pahars that gave the Latvian the crucial spotkick but manager David Moyes insisted: "Davie was outstanding, absolutely outstanding." Goodison chief Moyes, meanwhile, has revealed Steve Watson was his designated second-choice keeper at St Mary's after he named five outfield players on the bench. Injuries to Richard Wright and Steve Simonsen left only youth team keeper Alex Cole or coach Chris Woods as back-up to Paul Gerrard. But yesterday Moyes revealed his selection wasn't the gamble it appeared. He explained: "Had anything happened to Paul Gerrard at Southampton, then Steve Watson would have taken over in goal. Steve's done it before and he revealed to me that he used to train with John Burridge at Newcastle on the Friday before a game!"
Moyes' goalkeeping problems are set to continue with tomorrow's visit of Middlesbrough although Simonsen could be included in the squad. The Blues boss added: " Hopefully one of the injured goalkeepers will be available for Saturday, at least to be on the bench. Of the two, I think Steve Simonsen has a slightly better chance than Richard Wright."

Weir's worst week of woe
Fanscene By Mark O'Brien, Daily Post
Sep 13 2002
IT'S NOT been the best of weeks for David Weir.
If the collective embarrassment of a 2-2 draw with the Faroe Islands wasn't bad enough he then gets to shoulder pretty much all the blame from laugh-a-minute Berti Vogts. He must have been relieved to get back to where he is valued and appreciated, only to have his week of victimisation topped off by Steve Bennett's harsh decision to give a penalty to Marian Pahars, the Latvian Michael Owen.
The fans, players and manager alike felt aggrieved after dominating so much of the game against Southampton but, as our neighbours from across the park will tell you, if you don't put your chances away you eventually be punished. The quality of finishing apart, the team put in the sort of performance that will see us prosper - hardworking and with a commitment to passing the ball and attacking. The spirit they showed was all the more commendable given that a couple of players - Li Weifeng and Paul Gerrard in particular - would hardly be classed as 'first choice'. All David Moyes can really ask for against an in-form Middlesbrough - not a phrase that readilyrolls off the tongue - is for more of the same, and hopefully the strikers will finally get a much deserved lucky break in front of goal. One striker who hasn't even been near a pitch this season, never mind a goal, is club captain Duncan Ferguson. There are always rumours surrounding him and there is media speculation this week that his injury-blighted career now hangs in the balance. Even if he does make it unscathed through next week's reserve game against Birmingham it seems unlikely that we'll ever see anything like the old Duncan Ferguson again. His game is all about power and aggression and it seems his physique is simply not capable of handling the rigours of the Premiership for any sustained period.
It would be a shame for both Everton and Ferguson if he were forced to retire and concentrate on his pigeons at the age of 30. Admittedly there have been times when the myth has outstripped his actual achievements on the pitch, while some of his behaviour, particularly the kamikaze sendings off, have done no-one any favours. But despite the negative things that surround him he has still been responsible for some of Everton's most memorable moments in the last 10 years.
Even more than that, he was often the supporters' only ray of light during some very dark days.

Time for Sven to drop Owen
Sep 13 2002 By Howard Kendall, Liverpool Echo
AFTER Alan Smith's promising performance for England last Saturday, everyone is talking about him being the one to partner Michael Owen in the Euro 2004 qualifier against Slovakia next month.
But I would say there needs to be some serious consideration given to Owen's inclusion, the way things are going for the lad. Maybe Sven Goran Eriksson should give him a bit of a rest.
At the moment Owen is lacking confidence and is not hitting the back of the net. There may also be the burden of the England captaincy. Some players thrive on it, while others can be distracted by the role. Maybe it is the right time to take Owen out of it. After his performance at Villa Park, I would expect that Smith has been pencilled in for the trip to Slovakia, but I was not too convinced about how Owen played. I'm not having a go at the lad. There is no doubting that his goals will come back.
Every striker goes through these patches. It is hard to keep incredible scoring runs going.
To leave him out of the England starting line-up is a big decision to make, but there was none bigger than that made by Alf Ramsey before the 1966 World Cup. He left out Jimmy Greaves and selected Geoff Hurst and Roger Hunt up front. It was a brave decision to leave out the fans' favourite, but Ramsey did it for the benefit of the whole team and it paid off. People are saying Alan Smith is the new Alan Shearer, but I don't see him as that. He doesn't even play in that position for his club. His talent has never been in question, only his temperament has held him back. But playing him and outofsorts Owen together may not be the right move. Don't rush to change team
EVERTON played very well at Southampton, despite the defeat. Performing like that, the team will win more games than they will lose. They are creating enough goalscoring chances, but the worry is that they are not putting the ball in the net. I f you cannot score then you become vulnerable to the odd fluke that can end up costing you the match. Just like at Southampton. Taking your chances is the only way to avoid paying dearly for errors. Inevitably, people are talking about bringing Wayne Rooney in. A manager cannot continue with a strike partnership that is not scoring.
At least Campbell and Radzinski are getting into goalscoring positions. If they keep doing that, then you feel that they will score. The supporters will have to rely on David Moyes's judgement. He obviously wants to introduce Rooney slowly.

Rooney: I'll go in goal
Sep 13 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
EVERTON have a new role lined up for teenage striking prospect Wayne Rooney tomorrow - emergency goalkeeper! Injuries to Richard Wright and Steve Simonsen mean the Blues are preparing to go into the visit of Middlesbrough without a recognised 'keeper on the subs' bench for the second successive match. If anything happened to Paul Gerrard, an outfield player would have to deputise, and the 16-year-old striker is one of the standby volunteers. "We hope it won't come to that," said manager Moyes "but one or two of the lads were on standby at Southampton.
"Steve Watson has done it before apparently, while young Wayne fancies himself in goal, too!"
Wright has already been ruled out, while Simonsen has a dead leg which is preventing him kicking the ball or diving on the problem side. Joseph Yobo will also be missing again. The only player Moyes is likely to be able to add to his squad after the midweek defeat at Southampton is defender Alan Stubbs, but his return is not automatic. Moyes said: " I thought Li Wei Feng did very well considering it was his Premiership debut," he said. "It was probably more difficult for him than Li Tie, coming in at centre- half where you're more exposed, but he did well. "He has certainly been added to our first team pool, but we will need to see him in a few more games to see how he develops. "But after Wednesday I would certainly have no fears about putting him in." Middlesbrough's confidence is high after a convincing 3-0 defeat of Sunderland on Tuesday.
"They have looked tight and very difficult to break down this season," said Moyes. "They will have enjoyed the goals they scored against Sunderland, but I saw them at Old Trafford recently when they could consider themselves a little unfortunate, too. "But I've told my players that if we keep playing the way we did on Wednesday goals will come for us, too."

Eye on the Boro
Sep 13 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
DAVID WEIR has always been the strong, silent type, preferring to let his performances speak louder than his post-match pronouncements. And when it comes to the savaging he sustained in the Scottish press this week, following his display in the Faroe Islands, he intends to keep a diplomatic silence. But where Everton are concerned, he is happy to talk, positively and lengthily.
"I don't want to talk about Scotland," he declared, "but I'll speak about Everton. "We're disappointed after Wednesday, but we're not down because we know how well we played.
"The manager thought that was as good as we've played under him, and I would agree - especially first half. "We outplayed Southampton and I think everyone realises that, but unfortunately we never got the result and that's the thing everyone remembers." After the criticism he received following Scotland's desperate draw in the Faroe Islands, Weir's week couldn't have got any worse.
If Scottish commentators believe one of the weakest international squads in Europe can suddenly do without the 32-year-old, Evertonians gave their verdict at St Mary's on Wednesday.
"Weir! Weir!" rang out regularly from the visiting seats, as the defender produced another impeccably composed performance. The last thing he deserved was to be penalised by an incredibly harsh penalty decision, as the Saints' striker, nicknamed the Latvian Michael Owen, fell dramatically to the turf 19 minutes from time. "I just didn't think it was a penalty," said Weir. "I was conscious when the ball came across that I couldn't foul Pahars because I knew he would be looking for it - and I didn't foul him, or I felt I didn't. "I honestly couldn't believe it. I thought the referee was going to give a free-kick to us, but instead that's decided the game. "But everyone's still upbeat. If you are not creating chances and you are getting beat you start to worry, but we are creating chances.
"The players are good enough to score them, we just didn't get that bit of luck we needed at Southampton. "Hopefully when we do start scoring they will come in twos and threes and we will win games comfortably. "I don't feel frustrated because we have played well. The signs are good and we have to be positive and realise we have played well and should have more points.
"You could see round the training ground on Thursday morning. There was no doom or gloom. We all knew we deserved better and we have to take that on board." The fact remains, however, that the fixture list has been kind to the Blues' so far. While clubs like Birmingham and Bolton have already played - and got results - against the likes of Manchester United, Liverpool and Leeds, Everton still have tougher tests to come. Middlesbrough still do not come into the toughest test category, but following the summer signings of Massimo Maccarone, George Boateng and Juninho, they have started impressively. "They are a good side and will take some beating," admitted Weir. "But we are capable of doing that. "I don't know much about Maccarone other than what I've seen on television. He's got a few goals and he had a good pedigree. "But we've got good players, too, and despite what happened on Wednesday we're still confident." Joseph Yobo, Duncan Ferguson, Alessandro Pistone and Gary Naysmith were all missing at Southampton and Steve Watson and Scot Gemmill were on the bench after injuries. Steve McClaren's Boro will provide tough opposition but Moyes was happy with the display at St Mary's and said: "It won't be difficult to lift the players because they know they played really well. "It perhaps would have been if they knew that they hadn't played well, but if they keep doing the things that they were doing at Southampton in terms of performance, then they won't have a problem."

Blues still on right track
By Mark Lawrenson, Daily Post
Sep 14 2002
IN THE past few weeks, Everton have been finding their level in the Premiership. While David Moyes has transformed the attitude of the club on the playing field, they still come across as a wholehearted and hard-working but limited team. Privately I believe that is something Moyes would admit to, because no matter how good a manager is, there is only so much he can do with the calibre of player he has to work with. Managers are not alchemists after all. The game against Southampton is a case in point in my opinion, because the Blues more than held their own but lacked the cutting edge when it counted and ended up with nothing. In particular Tomasz Radzinski missed a real howler in the first half - think Ronnie Rosenthal at Aston Villa, but worse - and it meant Southampton bagged the three points. However it is all part of building a team and as Moyes is still the new kid on the block, I'm sure he will just concentrate on working hard and then maybe looking to improve the squad at Christmas if the money is available. It is frustrating for the fans because they all feel Everton should be better than they are, but compared with where they were a few months ago there is already a world of difference. The players are all obviously playing for their manager and believe in what he is telling them to do, which is another plus point. On top of that, I don't think Moyes will have been too disappointed by the defeat, aside from the initial regret after the game. He will have drawn up a list at the start of the season of the games Everton will expect to get something from, the maybes and the 'anything will be a bonus' matches. While Southampton away would have been a maybe, Middlesbrough at home is a game Everton will be looking to win to move up their own mini-league of the bottom half of the Premiership. Middlesbrough are a solid team and have had some decent results, but they are in a bit of a comfort zone at the moment, which Everton can take advantage of. Yes Massimo Macarrone is a threat, but Everton, with a recalled Wayne Rooney up front, will have too much for them. If they can turn them over, it will be a validation of Moyes' philosophy with points as opposed to just a good performance.
And it is another step towards the safety of mid-table - or top of the bottom eight clubs if you like - instead of another relegation battle.

Rodrigo rushed to hospital with knee injury
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 14 2002
EVERTON'S summer signing curse struck again yesterday when Brazilian midfielder Rodrigo broke down in training with suspected knee ligament damage. The £1.5million acquisition from Athletico Mineiro was rushed to hospital after collapsing in agony towards the end of the Blues' final training session before today's game with Middlesbrough. Boss David Moyes visited Rodrigo last night as Everton still await confirmation on the extent of the damage, which could take a few days due to the inflammation of the knee. But the Brazilian was in such pain that the Blues fear the 26-year-old may have sustained a cruciate ligament injury which could ravage his debut season in England.
Rodrigo has yet to start in the Premiership for the Blues after missing a large part of pre-season training as he searched for a new club, but has been on the bench for every game so far. He joins fellow summer captures Joseph Yobo and Richard Wright on the Blues' injury list, which shows no signs of improving before Steve McClaren's team arrive at Goodison Park this afternoon. Alan Stubbs should return after serving a one-match suspension but otherwise Moyes is unable to add any new faces to the depleted squad that lost at Southampton. "Steve Simonsen will have a fitness test and could go on the bench if we have a problem," said the Blues boss, "but apart from that there is no-one else set to return. "A lot of players should be back in training next week, including Richard Wright. He is very close now. "He did some handling in training today and we hope and expect him to start full training next week. The Blues are aiming for their first home win of the season today but, despite successive defeats at Manchester City and Southampton, Moyes insists confidence is not a problem. He added: "Everybody needs a win but we are by no means down. We are down in the sense that we didn't get the results we deserved but if we keep playing the way we are then the results will come."

Vogts got it wrong about Weir
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 14 2002
DAVID MOYES is to lodge a complaint with the Scottish Football Association over Berti Vogts' public attack on David Weir. The beleagured Scotland manager turned outspoken critic of two of his most senior players this week only to backtrack and contact the Blues defender and West Ham's Christian Dailly urging them not to quit the international scene. Weir is set to continue to serve his country but Vogts' words have clearly angered the Everton boss, who revealed he is writing to the SFA in protest at the criticism his player has received. Moyes will ask Weir to lead his team out against Middlesbrough this afternoon with the player adamant the distractions that followed the Faroe Islands debacle will not affect him but was disappointed at the events. Moyes said: "I didn't like it either and I am sending a letter to the SFA regarding the comments. "I'm not going to go into detail about what it says, I like to work professionally and do things in a professional manner."
The Blues boss admitted Weir supported his stance as he backed his skipper to shrug off his international problems and continue his fine Premiership form. "I have spoken to David about it and he is in agreement with what I am doing," Moyes added. "His performance in midweek at Southampton, even though he had an extremely soft penalty decision given against him, was excellent and typical of how he has played for me. "I don't think he will retire from international football, he is a real, honest professional who will always give his best. That's what he's done for me. He is one of the key men here and will be so against Middlesbrough. He's played very well this season and he's a big influence. I want more of the same. He is a quiet leader but there is nothing wrong with that, afterall there is a quiet one who is doing it for England. He is quiet but it doesn't mean he is any less effective." Weir is maintaining a dignified silence over the affair, refusing to be drawn into a war of words. But he admitted: "I am disappointed. It's not nice to read things like that, especially for your family, but I have put it into perspective and that is all that matters.
"I have just got to ignore it to be honest and concentrate on my football, which is what I am all about. I am going to keep quiet. Plenty of people have said enough already and I will just keep my mouth shut." Weir, however, does appreciate his manager's support during his troubled week.
He added: "What has happened this week doesn't help my preparations but I will let my performances answer my critics. I don't want to start saying things or doings that are going to get me involved." SFA chief executive David Taylor has not been able to speak to Vogts about the alleged criticism. Taylor said: "I haven't spoken to Berti. I have read the press comments myself and Andy Mitchell (SFA press officer) has been dealing with that so I can't offer any comment." Vogts left messages with both Dailly and Weir on Thursday but it is still not clear whether either player has responded. SFA spokesman Mitchell said: "If he (Moyes) speaks to Berti Vogts, I'm sure Berti will tell him his side of the story."

Never any doubt
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 16 2002
MARK PEMBRIDGE saluted Kevin Campbell's matchwinning display against Middlesbrough as he revealed the Blues striker had never lost the support of his Everton team-mates. The Blues number nine scored his first league goals at Goodison Park for 12 months on Saturday as David Moyes' men came from behind to secure their first home win of the season. And Welsh international Pembridge believes Campbell's double strike was just rewards for the former Arsenal man's fine early-season form. The 32-year-old frontman has come in for fierce terrace criticism since returning from a serious knee injury a year ago but Pembridge insists it has been wide of the mark. "If you look at his performances I don't think he's had a difficult time at all," said the Blues midfielder. "He's scoring goals, making chances, playing well and giving 100 per cent in every game. Now he's getting his rewards with these two goals. "The first goal was a case of being in the right place at the right time which all good strikers have a knack of doing and the second was a classic header, very similar to the one he scored against Middlesbrough here last season." Manager Moyes was also delighted with the striker's displays this season. Moyes said: "Kevin took a few knocks out there but he kept on going. He's done that all season, working really hard as a buffer for Tomasz Radzinski and Wayne Rooney and he got his rewards with the two goals. "He should be applauded for working so hard. He's getting to the stage in his career where he appreciates every game now, I know I did when I was his age." Pembridge admitted the Blues were fortunate to still be in the game after a torrid first-half display which was transformed when Moyes reverted to a three-man midfield and introduced Wayne Rooney at the interval. He explained: "We just couldn't get going in the first half and I've got to be honest I was very disappointed with my own display. "We couldn't get near them to even put in a tackle or close them down in the first half and when I did get the ball I couldn't pass it well at all.
"In the second half we did get a lot closer to them, we had to stop their midfield running at our defence which was a big problem in the first half, and we started much better. "I moved inside when we went to a three-man midfield which personally I like because you are more involved.
"At Southampton we started well but this time we didn't. Fortunately we made sure we began the second half well and made a few more chances. "We didn't play particularly well, but we played better on Wednesday at Southampton and got nothing." Everton, meanwhile, hope to discover in the next 24 hours the extent of Rodrigo's injury when the Brazilian undergoes a scan on the knee damaged in training on Friday.

Unsworth delighted as striker silences boo-boys
By Paul Walker, Daily Post
Sep 16 2002
DAVE UNSWORTH revealed his delight for two-goal hero Kevin Campbell after Everton registered their first home win of the season. Unsworth has been on the wrong end of terrace abuse during his time at Goodison Park so knows exactly what underfire Campbell has suffered recently.
When Campbell arrived on Merseyside for £3million from Turkish side Trabzonspor three seasons ago the former Arsenal man was an instant hero, scoring a glut of goals on his way to earning a lucrative long-term contract. But times have changed. He has struggled for form and felt the brunt of dissatisfaction among the Goodison Park faithful. Everton have struggled this season to find real star quality among their squad of honest professionals and have been forced to turn to 16-year-old Wayne Rooney for a glimmer of potential greatness. That situation has not helped topearner Campbell, who has been forced to plough a lonely furrow up front for most of this season. So for Campbell to be the match winner - after Middlesbrough had threatened to tear Everton to shreds following Szilard Nemeth's opener - produced great delight in the home dressing room. Unsworth, who has just enjoyed a testimonial match, know what it is like when Everton fans turn on a player.
He said: "I know how it feels to get stick from the fans so I'm delighted for Kevin to have got the two goals. I thought he produced a great all round performance. He won a hell of a lot of headers and he deserved those goals. "As a striker you are a hero one week and a villain the next, so everyone is delighted for Kevin and all round it was a great performance from him. "He has to play up front largely on his own with one or two small strikers alongside him so he takes the brunt of it."
Boss David Moyes claims Campbell is his "buffer", taking the tough stuff from defenders and helping create the space for small hitmen Tomasz Radzinski and second-half substitute Rooney.

Everton 2, Middlesbrough 1 (D,Post)
Sep 16 2002 Andy Hunter Reports From Goodison Park, Daily Post
ALL IT needed was Steve McQueen to leap in on a motorbike and Goodison Park would have witnessed one of its finest escape acts on Saturday. An absorbing match with Middlesbrough ended with Everton's first home win of the season but perhaps more importantly for long-term prosperity, it was also the setting for a number of men in Blue to break from their chains. Topping the bill was matchwinner Kevin Campbell (pictured). The target of much terrace abuse ever since accepting the fabulous contract he was offered scored his first league goals at Goodison in a year and finally, where groans once greeted his every touch, strains of 'Super Kev' were heard again. At the opposite end another player without widespread approval and, it appeared, a future at the club, dived headlong into a starring role that gave Everton a fighting chance of winning a game they could have lost by halftime, Paul Gerrard. In the midst of it all though was Wayne Rooney, the finest 'Get Out of Jail' card in David Moyes' pack. Outplayed by a vibrant Middlesbrough team for 45 minutes on Saturday it was a miracle the Blues headed into the interval at 1-1. Equally astonishing was the transformation they underwent in time to dominate afterwards, although the reasons why where evident in the hustling, menacing whirlwind wrapped up inside the Blues' number 18 shirt.
Having chased shadows in the Goodison glare from 3pm and watched Massimo Maccarone wreak havoc but fail to finish three clear openings, it required drastic action to prevent a third straight defeat for Everton. Moyes played his part by reverting back to the 4-3-3 formation he'd employed in the previous two home games. But it still needed a player of outstanding quality to upset the rhythm of a good Middlesbrough team and the 16-year-old proved just the man, sorry boy, for the job.
Where once Ugo Ehiogu, Gareth Southgate and Colin Cooper strolled in the sunshine and instigated wave upon wave of attacks for the visitors, the perfectly timed arrival of the Croxteth cracker gave them a problem they couldn't solve. Within two minutes of his appearance Rooney had won a corner, saw a strong penalty claim turned down and been booked for his part in a goalmouth melee with Mark Schwarzer. The tide had turned. In injury time, with Everton holding onto the slender lead brought by Campbell's first-half tap-in and classic 76th-minute header, the youngster brought a bouncing ball under control on the edge of his own box and stormed the length of the pitch to win a corner at the other end. As he strode down the right flank his manager resembled a hyped-up swimming coach as he urged the striker forward and Goodison rose in raptures. Rooney's burst made no difference to the scoreline but in one instant he had brought the crowd to its feet. A feat few players have managed in recent times at Everton. No wonder the home fans and Moyes cannot contain their excitement for their gift. "Wayne helped change things a lot," admitted the Blues boss afterwards. "I said a few words at half time to one or two players that we needed to do a lot better.
"Wayne came on and the thing I've noticed about him is he just loves to play football. He wants the ball all the time. I sent him out to warm up at half time, I didn't tell him he was coming on easily.
"He's a shy boy but he wants to play, he enjoys his football and we just have to be careful we don't expect too much too soon from him. "He's very quick and strong for a boy of his age and he's got the ability to come in and compete at this level. He's a good player all round. "He is a centre-forward first and foremost but we've used him in different systems so far and he's done well in them all. Today we asked him to also help the midfield." Rooney was booked for kicking the ball at Schwarzer, and while it appeared he was merely returning it to the corner flag his defence is weakened by the fact he wouldn't have missed on this form. Moyes added: "Wayne is still understanding things at the moment. These are top quality players he's up against now, not fellow 16-year-olds who he can run rings around. "Although he still tries to beat eight players at a time on occasions and I am not going to knock that out of him. "The thing that stands out for me is he's got a great football intelligence. "The players are all looking out for him and helping him and I've told them to make sure he's tucked up in bed early every night!" Everton's hopes of getting anything from this game should also have been tucked up early too, as they struggled to get a grip on midfield and were lucky Middlesbrough's finishing was not as sharp as their approach play. Before fading in the second half, the excellent Maccarone was the last person David Weir wanted on top of his troubled week. The Italian had already flashed one drive inches wide before he helped give Boro the lead inside ten minutes. Apoor clearance by Weir fell straight to Geremi, and with Alan Stubbs playing the striker onside he latched onto the former Real Madrid man's pass and galloped clear.
Gerrard, not for the first time in a commanding performance, parried Maccarone's effort but only as far as the unmarked Szilard Nemeth who stroked the ball into the empty net. The Goodison goalkeeper's brave save stopped Maccarone adding a second, in what proved a game-changing moment, as the Blues broke immediately and levelled. Quality crosses by the Blues were in short supply on Saturday but when David Unsworth delivered one into the area, Tomasz Radzinski met it with a flying header that struck the post. Fortunately it bounced along the line and Campbell converted. The Blues survived numerous let-offs before transforming themselves in the second half which, with games against Manchester United, Arsenal and Leeds coming up, they had to. With Rooney at the heart of every good attack the Blues, with Li Tie and Thomas Gravesen steadily improving in midfield, finally put Middlesbrough on the back foot and, when Southgate went off injured in the 74th minute, the rescue mission was on.
Two minutes after the England defender's departure Campbell rose magnificently to power Gravesen's corner past the startled Schwarzer.
With the Blues looking hungrier for the win in the dying stages it was a change in tactics, personnel and attitude that helped pull off a remarkable escape act.
EVERTON (4-4-2): Gerrard; Hibbert, Weir, Stubbs, Unsworth; Alexandersson (Rooney 46), Tie, Gravesen, Pembridge; Radzinski (Carsley 84), Campbell. Subs: Simonsen, Wei Feng, Linderoth.
MIDDLESBROUGH (3-4-3): Schwarzer; Ehiogu, Southgate (Whelan 74), Cooper; Stockdale, Geremi, Greening, Queudrue; Nemeth, Job (Boksic 80), Maccarone (Marinelli 80). Subs: Wilson, Crossley.
REFEREE: Matt Messias
BOOKINGS: Everton's Stubbs (dissent) and Rooney (ungentlemanly conduct); Middlesbrough's Schwarzer (ungentlemanly conduct).

Everton 2, Middlesbrough 1 (Echo)
Sep 16 2002 By David Prentice At Goodison Park
THE first refuge of a manager unluckily beaten, is the curious cliche that luck evens itself out over the course of a season. David Moyes trotted it out on Wednesday night. But the Blues' boss couldn't surely have expected the scales of fortune to tilt in his favour quite so quickly. Just three days after dominating, but losing at Southampton, Everton turned the tables on Middlesbrough.
Boro and the Blues both sit comfortably on eight points from six games today. But on the evidence of Saturday's match at Goodison Park it is the Teesiders who have the brighter prospects for the 32 matches which remain. That is, until you toss in another cliche. You make your own luck in football. For 45 minutes Everton were chasing more shadows than Peter Pan. Out-passed, outplayed and out of touch, only fine goalkeeping from Paul Gerrard and less than lethal finishing from Massimo Maccarone allowed them in at the interval on level terms. Moyes said afterwards he issued a few harsh words at half-time. But not for the first time this season he also went gung-ho. Everton enjoyed one more slice of luck when Maccarone shot against the inside of a post, but from that point on began to grind more and more possession and create more and more chances out of the match. And they were rewarded when Kevin Campbell flashed a header past Schwarzer that might have come from the barrel of a gun. Just 14 minutes remained when the number nine grabbed his second goal of the game. It was another 10 minutes before the crowd felt sufficiently certain of the points to chance a chant of "Super Kevin Campbell!" It's a song not heard at Goodison for almost a year. But then again, it had been only a fortnight short of a calendar year since Campbell had scored a Premiership goal there. In between times the centre-forward has been called everything from lacklustre to lazy - and a few other four-lettered adjectives as well. But the fact remains that, even at 32, Campbell is integral to Everton's short-term future. Fit and with a full pre-season behind him last summer, he kicked off the campaign with four goals in eight games. After a long lay-off and precious little striking support when he returned, he struggled. This time around he still looks like Everton's most likely marksman, with Radzinski still finishing like Devon Loch, Ferguson deciding whether he's simply finished and Wayne Rooney finishing off his fast-track education into life as a Premiership forward. The sprinter's speed off the mark Campbell showed during his first few months on Merseyside has been consigned to the history books but, in an ageing boxer the last thing to go is always his punch - and Campbell can still punch his weight in the Premiership. Everton's striking future, Rooney, showed once again on Saturday he is learning fast, even if at times he seems in too much of a hurry. Such is his eagerness to impress he is thinking two and three moves ahead even as he collects the ball, and over-runs into trouble. But there was little doubt he was the catalyst for an Everton revival on Saturday. By half-time the Blues were reeling. Middlesbrough have splashed the cash again this summer, and would appear to have done so wisely. Maccarone, Geremi and Joseph-Desire Job were all supremely influential as Steve McClaren's men dominated the game.
But you couldn't help thinking of another Middlesbrough side who came to Goodison in recent years - with expensive and exotic international stars like Ravanelli, Juninho and Emerson on-board.
They reached two Cup finals that year, but were still relegated. This current Teeside incarnation, however, looks altogther better equipped to progress. Just 51 seconds were on the clock when Maccarone gave a glimpse of what Everton could expect throughout the afternoon, when he burst past Weir down the inside left channel and shot a foot wide. He broke clear in exactly the same position nine minutes later, this time Gerrard parried his low cross-shot and Nemeth had a simple tap-in. Everton dug in grimly. Job cut in unchallenged at the near post and Gerrard blocked again, then Maccarone beat Stubbs for pace but Gerrard sprinted out to smother at his feet.
Such was Boro's dominance that the visiting support was already chanting homages to chairman Steve Gibson, who had bankrolled the summer spree. But Everton had grittily clung on, and were rewarded in the 31st minute when Unsworth crossed dangerously from the left. Alexandersson headed back, Radzinski nodded against the post and Campbell was in prime poacher's territory to roll the ball over the line. Even after the equaliser Everton survived several more near misses. Gerrard scuttled athletically to his left to palm round Geremi's 25-yarder, Maccarone burst down the left yet again and shot across the face of goal, then Gerrard blocked superbly again from Nemeth's stinging 20 yard volley. Everton escaped one more time while they were adjusting to the half-time switch, Maccarone yet again charging down the left-hand channel before clipping a shot past Gerrard, but against the inside of a goal-post. But gradually, the balance of power began to switch. Cooper's awful clearance gave Campbell a volley which was deflected over. The 16-year-old Rooney pulled rank on Stubbs and clipped a free-kick inches over, then Campbell headed Pembridge's free-kick too close to Schwarzer. If it wasn't a cavalry charge, it was certainly a welcome change of emphasis from the oneway traffic of the first 50 minutes. The match-winner came in the 76th minute, when Gravesen arrowed a fierce corner-kick towards Boro's near post. It simply needed a centre-forward wit the nous and instinct to glide it goalwards - and Campbell obliged, the ball flashing past Schwarzer. It sealed a vital victory. Two more could-win fixtures remain before Oh-My-God-games against Manchester United, Arsenal and Leeds. Everton will really need to make their luck by then.
EVERTON (4-4-2): Gerrard, Hibbert, Weir, Stubbs, Unsworth, Alexandersson (Rooney 45 mins), Gravesen, Tie, Pembridge, Campbell, Radzinski (Carsley 84 mins). Not used: Simonsen, Feng, Linderoth.
MIDDLESBROUGH (3-4-3): Schwarzer, Ehiogu, Southgate (Whelan 74 mins), Cooper, Stockdale, Greening, Geremi, Queudrue, Nemeth, Maccarone (Marinelli 80 mins), Job (Boksic 80 mins). Not used: Wilson, Crossley.
REFEREE: Mr M. Messias.
BOOKINGS: Stubbs (38 mins) dissent, Schwarzer and Rooney (48 mins) unsporting behaviour,
GOALS: Nemeth (10 mins) 0-1, Campbell (31 mins) 1-1, Campbell (76 mins) 2-1.

Li Tie: There is more to come
Sep 16 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
EVERTON'S Chinese midfielder Li Tie is learning fast.
After the embarrassment of being substituted just 25 minutes into a match at Manchester City a fortnight ago, he has bounced back with two successive 90 minute appearances in the Premiership.
And his understanding of English is such that when he's asked about the chant "There's only one Li Tie!" (Li Tie is one of the most common names in a country of 1.2 billion people) he smiles and points to his neck tie. The switch from Beijing to Merseyside had been a huge culture shock for the player who celebrates his 25th birthday on Wednesday. But he has now started six successive games, after arriving as part of the summer sponsorship deal with electronics company Kejian, and after Saturday's first home win he declared: "I feel much better now than when I first came.
"I expected the pace of the Premiership to be fast when I first came, but I am getting used to it now.
"I am delighted the manager has selected me right from the start and I appreciate the help and support I have had from my team-mates. They have been very supportive. "I think I am playing okay right now. Not my very best yet, but the more I play the more I will improve. I know I have to learn more, but I hope I will carry on getting the opportunities." Li Tie started slowly on Saturday, but he improved as the match wore on and by the end was influential in Everton securing their first home victory of the season. "We just didn't get hold of the ball in midfield in the first half," he explained. "We brought Wayne Rooney on at half-time and it changed after that. "Wayne is an excellent player. He is very fast and he helped us win the game." Meanwhile, Boro boss Steve McLaren rued his side's missed chances, saying: "We were fantastic in the first half, and Everton had to come out after the break and have a go. "We were still able to pass the ball through them, but what happened after that is a lesson for us, a harsh one. "Being level at the break was a poor reflection on the game. But it was like the Manchester United game I watched on TV before the match.
"They made lots of chances early on and were made to pay, and that's how we feel now.
"I felt the game swung on Gareth Southgate going off with a back injury. "One or two of our lads went missing for the corner they scored the winner from, we hadn't regrouped."

Moyes: I'm so pleased with Wayne
Sep 16 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
EVERTON manager David Moyes paid tribute to bright young thing Wayne Rooney today.
The introduction of the 16-year-old at half-time on Saturday helped transform a match which looked beyond the Blues. And Moyes said: "We played Wayne a little bit deeper than he likes to play when we brought him on, behind the strikers, but he has the intelligence as a footballer to do that well. "For such a young lad he has a great football brain, and he showed great energy to cover a lot of miles as well. I was very pleased with him on Saturday." Rooney's introduction helped Everton celebrate their first home win of the season, coming from behind to beat Middlesbrough.
The Blues now have a full week to prepare for next Sunday's televised pay-per-view trip to Aston Villa. Before then, though, Moyes plans another couple of trips to Birmingham. He will watch the Midlands derby match tonight at St Andrew's, then on Wednesday hopes to see Duncan Ferguson test his fitness in a reserve match at Birmingham City. "Duncan trained all last week and if he goes okay today and tomorrow we would hope to see him in action on Wednesday," he said.
"We're taking things day by day with him, but his biggest problem at the moment is a lack of match fitness." Richard Wright is due to restart training again this week. Everton are still awaiting a specialist's examination to discover the extent of Rodrigo's knee injury, but there are fears he has sustained cruciate ligament damage. Joseph Yobo will not be fit enough to take part in Wednesday's reserve match at Birmingham City, but the Nigerian has an outside chance of recovering in time to make his long-awaited debut at Aston Villa on Sunday. Boss David Moyes, meanwhile, warned of another potential Worthington Cup banana skin following Saturday's second round draw which gave his side a trip to Wrexham in the week beginning September 30. "It's not far for us to travel, which is a good thing," he said, "but we are aware of their ability to pull off an upset. We certainly won't be taking them lightly. "They gave us a tough match pre-season and we'll be expecting an even tougher game this time."

Strike fantastic
Sep 16 2002 By Tommy Smith, Liverpool Echo
THE strikers came in two by two at the weekend . . . as Merseyside celebrated with a fine hat-trick of wins, thanks to the scoring talents of Everton's Kevin Campbell, Liverpool's Milan Baros and Tranmere's Simon Haworth. Let's face it, the victories could not have come at a better time:
For Everton, the need to win their first three home points and move well away from the wrong end of the table. For Liverpool, after recent lapses which had seen Newcastle and Birmingham fight back for draws when the Reds certain to take the points. For Ray Mathias, who had enjoyed his first win as Prenton boss in the midweek Worthington Cup tie, but who desperately wanted to follow that up with his first league success. The Blues were never going to find it easy against a Boro team brimming with confidence after their good start to the season. But they never really got to grips with the game in the first half. Later, manager David Moyes switched things round and they started to impose themselves and look a far more positive side, but life in the Premiership won't be easy if the team only plays for half the game. They have to become a side that is capable of dominating matches for far longer periods, but at least they came good, with Kevin Campbell showing his striker's instinct. Campbell has taken some criticism over the past 12 months, but his goals can only help his confidence, and the Goodison outfit will benefit greatly if he can get back among the goals regularly. Over the park, the Reds will be delighted to have grabbed a last-gasp victory Bolton, but the defensive problems that have existed this season remain. Statistics underline the side's current form - nine goals scored, eight conceded - and that is not the form of potential champions.
I agreed with the changes Gerard Houllier made. Michael Owen needed a rest and Milan Baros was ready to be unleashed on the Premiership - and what a start he made. When you are in the form he is, you believe you can score at any time, and the Czech star is doing just that. It still took a late winner from Emile Heskey, but at least the Reds are scoring late goals again! The big man's strength is through the centre and is far more effective there than wide out. The three points, however, was only achieved after Liverpool's defence was caught out twice. On both occasions, defenders failed to cut out passes. The marking and concentration, or lack of it, leaves a lot to be desired and, with Champions League action beginning this week, the players have to get their act together.
They have been so solid in recent years, defending more outside the box, but now rivals seem to be exploiting room down the flanks and forcing the defence into deeper positions. In the past, the midfield was cutting out the source for crosses but it's not happening now. Tranmere deserve a pat on the back for beating an impressive Brentford side.

Everton clinch first win of season
Academy Football By Chris Wright, Daily Post
Sep 17 2002
EVERTON'S under-19s clinched their first win of the FA Premier Academy League season with a 2-0 victory at Huddersfield Town on Saturday. After three straight defeats Colin Harvey's side claimed a first victory with goals from Scott Brown and 15-year-old striker Paul Hopkins. England youth international midfielder Brown opened the scoring, heading home at the far post. Brown had a hand in the second, supplying the pass for substitute Hopkins to finish well. Harvey said: "We were a bit fortunate. They had the majority of the game and had a few chances. But we scored two good goals and it is good to get the first win. "We were under a bit of pressure but the two centre halves (Steven Schumacher and Robert Southern) did very well." As the U19s got off the mark Alan Harper's under-17s lost their unbeaten record, going down 2-0 to Birmingham City at Netherton. Academy director Ray Hall said: "It was disappointing the U17s couldn't match the U19s' result.
For 35 minutes we controlled the game quite comfortably and they hit a long-range shot which squirmed under young Sean Lake, an under-15 goalkeeper, making only his second appearance. And then we really didn't get at the game in the second half. "It was disappointing because we have made a reasonable start to the season and it would have been nice to keep the thing going."
Defender Steven Schumacher is with the England U19s as part of the squad for tomorrow's friendly in Hungary. Also on international duty is midfielder Morgan Jones, who is to meet up with Wales U17s on Friday. Craig Garside has been named in the Wales U18 squad.

Injury-hit Ferguson ready for comeback
By Chris Wright, Daily Post
Sep 17 2002
DUNCAN FERGUSON looks set to make his first competitive appearance of the season in tomorrow night's reserve match at Birmingham City. The Scottish striker (above) has been pencilled in to play for Andy Holden's side to test his fitness. The 31-year-old has not played for the first team since the pre-season and has been plagued by a back injury. Everton boss David Moyes, who was at St Andrews last night to run the rule over Sunday's Premiership opponents Aston Villa, will also be back in Birmingham for tomorrow's FA Premier Reserve League match. Moyes said yesterday: "Duncan trained all last week and if he goes okay today and tomorrow we would hope to see him on Wednesday. "We're taking things day by day with him, but his biggest problem at the moment is a lack of match fitness." Fellow Everton forward, Brazilian Rodrigo, will discover the extent of his knee injury today after a specialist's examination. The former Botafogo star was injured at Bellefield last Friday during a training session and there are fears he has suffered cruciate ligament damage.
Nigerian defender Joseph Yobo will not be risked in the reserve match at Birmingham, but could come into contention for Sunday's match at Villa Park. Goalkeeper Richard Wright is due to restart training this week.

Rodrigo out for six months
Sep 17 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
EVERTON'S worst fears were realised today, when it was confirmed that Brazilian signing Rodrigo has ruptured his cruciate knee ligament. The devastating nature of the injury means that the midfielder will be out for at least six months, missing the majority of the Premiership season, and it also places considerable doubt over his whole career in English football. Everton initially signed the player on a year's loan from Athletico Mineiro, with a view to a decision on a permanent move next June. But the chances of a long- term transfer now appear remote. The player was injured in training last Friday. It may be several weeks before the injury has settled down sufficiently for surgeons to operate. It is a crushing blow to boss David Moyes, who learned today that the club's injury jinx does not just extend to players currently at the club. Ghanaian midfielder Alex Nyarko, on loan at Paris St Germain until Christmas, has broken his wrist and will be out for six weeks.
The player sustained the injury, which will require surgery, during the closing stages of Saturday's 3-0 victory over Strasbourg. It should not affect any permanent transfer, however. Nyarko will stil have two months in which to convince PSG to sign him permanently after the break has healed.
Rodrigo, on the other hand, faces the heartbreak of his English career having ended even before it had started. He figured from the substitutes' bench in five of Everton's six games this season.
The Blues' Worthington Cup second round trip to Wrexham, meanwhile, has been arranged for Tuesday, October 1, kick-off 7.45pm. Ticket details will appear tomorrow.

Everton need long-awaited cup progress
Sep 17 2002 By Kevin Ratcliffe, Liverpool Echo
THE second round draw of the Worthington Cup is always a damp squib for Premiership clubs.
It is seeded, so the bigger clubs never have a chance of facing each other, and clubs involved in European football don't even enter until the third round stage. But no matter what the romantics may think, the unusual format is absolutely vital to the financial wellbeing of Football League clubs.
Unless you are fan of a Third or Second Division club, you will have no idea of the importance of a draw against a Premiership team in this competition. Wrexham will be thrilled to have been pulled out of the hat to face Everton. It's close enough for plenty of Blues' fans to make the trip to North Wales, and there will be a great deal of local interest in the tie. The attitude of Premiership clubs to this tournament in the past has led to the need for seeding at this stage. It is undoubtedly the poor relation to the FA Cup and the fact that neither Arsenal nor Manchester United have even made the final for nearly a decade points to where it lies on their list of priorities. But that means it offers an intriguing route into Europe for other Premiership clubs like Blackburn, Tottenham and Leicester.
Everton will consider themselves in the same stratum as those three and will be finally looking to put their League Cup hoodoo behind them this season. Wrexham can certainly provide a potential upset. They have plenty of pace in their side and have a proud tradition of giantkilling.
But Everton should progress. An ideal scenario would be a full house at The Racecourse, but Everton going on to enjoy a long awaited run in the competition. Kevin's value is even more vital
DUNCAN FERGUSON has long been used to speculative stories about his fitness, but for the first time last week his whole career was placed in doubt. Without knowing the exact nature of Duncan's injury, I can't comment on his problems, but anything which is back related is always a worry for a player. But while Duncan continues to struggle for fitness, the importance of Kevin Campbell to Everton's cause becomes even greater. Kev has taken more than his fair share of stick from the fans in recent months, but he won't worry about that. Criticising number nines who haven't got pace as their prime asset is almost a tradition at Goodison. I remember Bob Latchford getting plenty of stick for being lazy, and he didn't do a bad job for the club, did he? The simple fact is that you need a physical outlet up front, and Kevin offers one. You can't play two tots like Radzinski and Rooney together, while Nick Chadwick is just back from injury and not really a target man. Kevin's height is vital defending set-pieces, as well as at the other end of the pitch - as he showed with Saturday's winner. Kevin is top scorer at Goodison already, with a very healthy return of a goal every other game. If he can keep that going there will be a few more chants of Super Kev ringing around Goodison before the season.

Bookies left singing blues over United
By Len Capeling, Daily Post
Sep 18 2002
NO-ONE predicted that Everton and Manchester United would be neckand- neck by mid-September. Not even my esteemed colleague Mark-Lawrenson. But there it is, in Premiership black and white: United in 10th place, a gnat's hind leg of goal difference ahead of the Blues. I resisted the temptation to ring Sir Alex and ask him how it felt to be living in reduced circumstances with the poor and needy. Sometimes it's better not to look for trouble, particularly as the knight of the shires is not exactly renowned for his sense of humour when his untouchables begin to act like mere mortals. Still, as a betting man he'll be surely interested to know that Coral have now priced the chances of the rich and the ragged finishing the season within huffing distance of each other.
Admittedly, Coral's prices tell us more about Manchester United's perceived decline than they do about any Everton improvement. For example, my Coral contact clearly had no conception of how dismal Everton were for 55 minutes against a one-note Middlesbrough. Equally, he hadn't witnessed United's depressing decline at Leeds after they'd bossed much of the first period. But then, did he need to? After all, the tabloids are already awash with doom-laden pronouncements about United's lack of direction, lack of leadership, and, incredibly, alleged lack of ambition. Naturally, no-one has the courage to tell Fergie to his face that perhaps he's spending too much time with his heroic horse, Rock of Gibraltar, and not enough time with his increasingly rocky former champions. The weekend's events at Elland Road offered a great opportunity for some straight questioning. I longed for some young, foolhardy sportswriter to remind Sir Alex that based on last season's results, United could afford to lose only one more match before conceding the championship. But it didn't happen. Instead, United's manager was allowed to drone on about his team's injury problems and the worrying lack of confidence of Ruud van Nistelroy, who, like some others among the elite, is short on precision. That lack of sharpness proved costly against a Leeds side that is beginning to play the way Terry Venables demands: solid in midfield and defence, clever and increasingly clinical going forward. Without Roy Keane to provide the mania and the momentum United look underpowered and lacking in real threat. Some experts are already reading the last rites, or so it seems. They can't see beyond a slick Arsenal side that Arsene Wenger insists is better than last term's model, while Liverpool, despite occasional frailties, are still seen as more robust than the Old Trafford wasters. Even Chelsea have begun to buzz, as if Claudio Ranieri's rubbishing of their title claims has given them discretion to prove him absolutely wrong. All this conspires to make United seem even more friendless than usual and probably helps explain why the odds on Everton sticking close to them as the season unfolds are surprisingly unstratospheric.
Forget 100/1 or anything like it, despite Coral quoting United at 5/4 favourites in August against Everton's unbridgeable 500/1. After a mere six games Coral now offer no more than 20/1 on Everton finishing level on points with Manchester United - or 16/1 that they'll end the campaign in adjacent positions, wherever that might be. I'll leave you to break the news to Sir Alex. They tell me that hospital food has improved out of all recognition.
* DAVID MOYES continues to demand patience - not surprising after Saturday's shameful first half. One sportswriter described it as rubbish, and he was probably being kind. The problem I had with events is that Everton seemed to have no idea how to deal with an unsophisticated Middlesbrough game plan that simply involved the back men knocking the ball over top for Massimo Maccarone to chase. This baffled the Blues to such an extent that had the scoreline shown 5-1 to Boro at the break no-one could have complained, least of all a paralysed midfield and defence. Then Boro bottled it. After an early second-half shot against the post - again from the wasteful Maccarone - they decided to settle for a point and allowed Everton, slightly revived by the effervescent Wayne Rooney, to force what was the unlikeliest of victories. Hopefully, there will be no repeat at Villa Park. Another 45 minutes of desperate disarray could prove fatal, even against Graham Taylor's tattered troops.

Wright's ready for reserves return
Report By Jonathan Mcevoy, Daily Post
Sep 18 2002
EVERTON keeper Richard Wright is expected to step up his comeback from injury for the reserves at Birmingham City tonight. The £3.5million summer signing from Arsenal is set to figure in competitive action for the first time since injuring his hand against Sunderland on August 24. The England international's anticipated return is a tonic for boss David Moyes, who also has Duncan Ferguson making his first appearance since preseason tonight, as the Goodison treatment table finally starts to clear. However, Everton are resigned to losing Rodrigo for at least six months after scans confirmed the Brazilian has torn a cruciate ligament. Now the 26-year faces a wait before discovering if he requires surgery as his future in English football is plunged into doubt.
Rodrigo, who is on a yearlong loan deal from Botafogo, broke down after falling awkwardly in training last Friday and his chances of securing a permanent move in June now seem slim.
Manager Moyes said: "It just happened in training. We were having a small-sided game and the keeper threw the ball out to him, which he went to control with his chest. He turned at the same time and his knee went from under him. At the moment the specialists have told us that these type of injuries take two or three weeks to settle down before they know if it requires surgery."
Rodrigo has made four substitute appearances in the Premiership since signing for the club in July.
Blues starlet Wayne Rooney has been omitted from the England under-19 squad to play Hungary in Budapest today. Rooney was a key man in Everton's 2-1 win over Middlesbrough on Saturday, but head coach Stuart Baxter explained: "Because he is playing league football for his club it was decided not to take him."

Fergie to start reserve match
Sep 18 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
EVERTON manager David Moyes will throw down the gauntlet to a clutch of senior stars at humble Solihull Borough tonight. The Blues' boss has named a reserve team to travel to Birmingham City's secondstring ground packed with players from his first team pool. And he wants them to convince him they deserve to make a return trip to Birmingham on Sunday for a Premiership clash at Aston Villa. Goalkeeper Richard Wright, defenders Steve Watson and Gary Naysmith, midfielder Lee Carsley and strikers Duncan Ferguson and Nick Chadwick will all play against Birmingham's reserves.
Defenders Li Wei Feng and Sean O'Hanlon will have late fitness tests. Particular focus will fall on Ferguson, who hasn't kicked a ball in competitive action since pre-season, and Moyes said: "Duncan has to prove that he is fit enough now to come into the first team. "We have introduced a real work ethic into the team. The players are working really hard and I think everyone can see that. We need Duncan to be in a condition to do that as well." Reserve team coach Andy Holden added: "We have a number of experienced players involved and you just want them to go out there and go about things the right way. "The more senior lads we have used this season have all done that, to be fair, and we hope they will do so again tonight." The Blues' reserves have won both their fixtures so far without conceding a goal.

Class act Wayne helps old school
Sep 18 2002 By Claire Stoker, Liverpool Echo
EVERTON'S boy wonder Wayne Rooney has kickstarted a campaign to help his old school raise funds.
The teenage hotshot returned to De La Salle RC high school to support his former headteacher's bid to raise £26,000 by the end of this month. Wayne, 16, left the Croxteth school with a clutch of GCSEs last June and now he wants to repay his teachers for their support. De La Salle needs the money to meet the deadline to bid for specialist college status and time is running out.
Wayne said: "I think specialist status would be great for De La Salle and I wish them every success.
"I'm backing my old school all the way and I urge people and businesses to dig deep to raise the cash." De La Salle is aiming for specialist science status. They have collected £24,000 of the £50,000 needed - but if they do not raise the rest of the money in time, they will miss out. Wayne still has family ties with the school - his mother is a dinner lady while many of his ex-classmates are studying for their A-Levels. Headteacher Patrick Ferguson said: "We are delighted Wayne is supporting us because we need all the help we can get to raise the money needed in time. I passionately believe young people deserve the very best and specialist status will help us to deliver that."
Mr Ferguson has been pulling out all the stops to raise the money in time, including tracking down former pupils on the Friends Reunited website.

Wright's ready for reserves return
Sep 18 2002 By Jonathan McEvoy, Daily Post
EVERTON keeper Richard Wright is expected to step up his comeback from injury for the reserves at Birmingham City tonight. The £3.5million summer signing from Arsenal is set to figure in competitive action for the first time since injuring his hand against Sunderland on August 24.
The England international's anticipated return is a tonic for boss David Moyes, who also has Duncan Ferguson making his first appearance since preseason tonight, as the Goodison treatment table finally starts to clear. However, Everton are resigned to losing Rodrigo for at least six months after scans confirmed the Brazilian has torn a cruciate ligament. Now the 26-year faces a wait before discovering if he requires surgery as his future in English football is plunged into doubt.
Rodrigo, who is on a year long loan deal from Botafogo, broke down after falling awkwardly in training last Friday and his chances of securing a permanent move in June now seem slim.
Manager Moyes said: "It just happened in training. We were having a small-sided game and the keeper threw the ball out to him, which he went to control with his chest. "He turned at the same time and his knee went from under him. At the moment the specialists have told us that these type of injuries take two or three weeks to settle down before they know if it requires surgery."
Rodrigo has made four substitute appearances in the Premiership since signing for the club in July.
Blues starlet Wayne Rooney has been omitted from the England under-19 squad to play Hungary in Budapest today. Rooney was a key man in Everton's 2-1 win over Middlesbrough on Saturday, but head coach Stuart Baxter explained: "Because he is playing league football for his club it was decided not to take him."

Birmingham Res 4, Everton Res 3
Daily Post
Sep 19 2002
DUNCAN FERGUSON completed a full 90 minutes as he made his return from injury in the Blues' defeat against Birmingham. Richard Wright also returned to play a full game as Ferguson looked anything but a player ready to call time on his career. The centre-forward made a bright start and put himself about early on, laying off for Nick Chadwick who shot wide. The big Scott should have opened the scoring on 28 minutes. Leon Osman crossed and Ferguson cracked a header against the bar. His follow up header was saved by Bennett. A minute later the Blues did go in front and again the big man was involved. A free-kick from the right was headed down by Ferguson and Pilkington found Chadwick who finished from close range. Birmingham were finding it hard to contain Everton, and again Ferguson should have got on the scoresheet just before the break when Kevin McCloud sent in a good cross but the Scot's header went just wide. The visitors started the second half well as Chadwick saw a great opportunity go begging but the Blues would rue that miss as the home side levelled on 51 minutes. A Nicky Eaden corner was volleyed home superbly by Darren Carter from 20 yards out. Everton restored their lead just six minutes later. A tremendous run by Osman was finished by the second attempt by Nick Chadwick for his and Everton's second. Again, though, the Blues allowed City back into it. Stan Lazaridis crossed, Wright could only parry and Jovan Kirovski rolled home the loose ball. Everton rallied again. A corner on the left was swung in by McCleod and Steve Watson beat Bennett with a looping header. Despite looking comfortable Everton then capitulated in the last 10 minutes as the home side came from behind to win the game.
Kirovksi finished from close range to square matters before the American completed his hat-trick with the winner on 86 minutes, blasting past the helpless Wright.
EVERTON: Wright, Watson, Naysmith, Pilkington, Southern, Gemmill, Osman, Carsley, Ferguson, Chadwick, McCloud. Subs: Crowder, Simonsen, Brown, Carney, Moogan.

Injury-hit Ferguson on road to recovery
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 19 2002
DUNCAN FERGUSON broke Everton's run of injury setbacks last night when he successfully came through his reserve test against Birmingham City. The Blues striker played the full 90 minutes in the 4-3 defeat at Solihull Borough as the Scot began his mission to prove his fitness and future under the watchful eye of David Moyes. Ferguson's appearance was his first since the friendly at Queens Park on July 23, and his first since having a cortisone injection in a troublesome back injury.
With the option of a second and final injection considered by the Blues medical staff and rejected by Ferguson, and no surgery available for the injury, the success of such reserve games are seen as crucial to the striker's future. Now Moyes will hope there is no reaction to the injury following Ferguson's run-out. The Blues boss received another striking boost last night as Nick Chadwick edged closer to a return with a two-goal display. And, despite the scoreline, there was further good news on the injury front for Moyes as £3.5million keeper Richard Wright played his first full game since the win at Sunderland nearly four weeks ago.
* EVERTON have announced ticket plans for their Worthington Cup second round tie at Wrexham on October 1. Priced £14 adults, £9 juniors and over-65s, tickets will initially be available from today to season ticket holders only on production of voucher number 33 together with no less than six away match ticket stubs from the 2001-02 season. Further details will be announced in due course.

Weifeng: My secret agony
Exclusive By Larry Neild, Daily Post
Sep 19 2002
ON the streets of Beijing he was mobbed by followers and adoring fans. In Korea he has already become a pin-up among girl football supporters. His crucial goals in the World Cup preliminaries earned his country a prized place in Japan and Korea. Thousands of miles away Li Weifeng is dreaming of instilling some oriental magic into the fortunes of Everton. The smiles, though, of the friendly gentle defender, who played for China in the World Cup, disguise a double family tragedy that still haunts him. As Li Weifeng was about to break into big time national football in his home country, the older brother he adored was murdered as he halted a street robbery. The have-a-go teenage student Li Chenguang was hailed a hero in Li's home city of Changchun for such a brave act. It cost the 17-year-old economics student his life. It was 1993 and younger brother Li Weifeng was preparing to win his place in the China Youth team 1,000 miles away in capital Beijing.
His parents were so determined to keep news of the tragedy from him that they tried to convince the then 15-year-old that his brother was busy at his studies. Instinct told Li Weifeng that a terrible tragedy had befallen the brother he looked up to and hero-worshipped. He won that cherished place and his football career started to take off. Six months later Li Weifeng's parents moved to Beijing and at the first family reunion after the murder there was no talk of what had happened. The memories were still too raw and heartbreaking for Li Weifeng and his griefstricken parents at such a tragic waste of life. At such a young and tender age Li Weifeng wanted to spare more sorrow for his parents, so he resisted the temptation to ask about what happened. It was as though there was an unspoken rule and an understanding that the loss was just too much to be spoken of. He buried the knowledge deep within his heart and it was only at night when he could hear the sobs of his mother that Li Weifeng, in the privacy of his own room, permitted himself to grieve at the loss of his brother.
To add to his woes, as Li Weifeng was dreaming of what would be his greatest moment of glory - playing for China in this year's World Cup - another tragedy hit his family. His father was killed in a terrible road accident in Millennium year. Now when he wears the famous blue shirt of Everton he dedicates every moment on the hallowed Goodison pitch to the cherished memories of his brother and father, both snatched too early from life. Every day he makes a long distance telephone call to his mother, Liu Yi Ping, in Guangdong, better known by its old name of Canton. Now there are just the two of them in the family. He has already started the countdown to next month when his mother travels to Liverpool so she can see for herself his assault on the Premiership. Li Weifeng (right) was a youngster aged just nine when friends realised he had a golden touch in football kickarounds in Changchun, a city that in China's War of Aggression with Japan formed the Japanese headquarters in Manchuria. To this day Japanese-style architecture dominates the industrial inland city in North East China, one-time seat of the last Emperor of China. With his potential sporting talent recognised, Li Weifeng was chosen to attend a college in Beijing that specialises in sports.
So at the age of just 12, he packed his bags and boarded a train for the arduous 20 hour journey to the nation's capital. Sharing a dormitory with seven other boys, Li Weifeng remembers his days at the sporting academy with much fondness. "We played football, but there was no money for shirts or football boots and our pitch was a very rough surface with no grass," he says. "It was hard but I adored playing football. My all-time hero at that time was Kevin Keegan. I had read about him and seen him on television and he was an inspiration to me. "Even at that young age I wondered what it would be like playing top-flight football in England. I never imagined that one day I would be playing for Everton in the Premier League. It is like a dream. "I started playing football on the streets of our city when I was less than 10 years old. People told me that I had a special talent for football, but I did not think of it like that. It was my hobby and I loved it so much. "Then in 1989 when I was just 11 I was chosen to play for my city's youth team in an international contest in Japan. "It was not only my first journey out of China, it was the first time I had ventured out of my home province. We did not win any trophies but I scored three goals, a good tally for a midfield player. "I must have been noticed because when I was 12, I was transferred to Beijing. I had to leave my family in Changchun and it was a hard life for me. "Our living conditions were very basic, but I quickly made friends among my dormitory mates. Even today I keep in contact with some of the boys from those days.
"Then in 1995 I was selected to go to Brazil to train. I was there for 18 months and learned to speak some Portuguese. I was also given the chance to watch the Brazil national team. "This was an important time in my football career because it was when I really developed my skills. "Just before the World Cup this year I was told that there may be an opportunity for me to play for Everton. I was a follower of the Premier League so I was aware of Everton and what a great team it was, with a long tradition in football. "I met David Moyes and was delighted with the warmth and friendship he showed towards me. The team has a tremendous spirit. "I want to do my best for Everton, but I know that I have to earn my place and I will be guided by the manager. "Liverpool is such a beautiful city with a lot of culture and I love living here. I have even learned how to cook spaghetti and fried eggs. "I think of my dad and know how proud he would have been for me playing in the World Cup and now playing in England. It is such a great pity that he never got the chance to watch me. He was such an inspiration to me as a boy and I play in his memory and that of my brother. "My brother was a hero and talking about what happened to him is still very painful for me. "When the tragedy happened, my parents did not want to tell me because they were worried it would harm my future.
"My brother was only 17 and he saw an old lady being robbed, so he ran over and struggled with the robber so that the lady could be freed. But he was stabbed and died. "I was in Beijing and when I called my family and asked to speak to my brother, they made an excuse and said he was a little busy with his studies. But I instinctively knew that something terrible had happened. "Nobody told me anything as I was too far away from my home city. I found out later the truth of the terrible tragedy, but as a family we just never spoke about it. It was as painful for my parents as it was for me. My mother cried a lot because her heart was broken. "My parents moved from Changchun to Beijing and then I went with them to Guangdong to start a new life there away from the pain.
"They were picking up the pieces when the tragedy happened to my father. I was talking to him on the telephone just an hour before he was killed in a terrible car accident." Li Weifeng's eyes are moist as he quietly recalls the memories of the loss of two of the most important people in his life.
But in stoic Far East traditions, those losses are not a setback to Li Weifeng, they are a driving force. He wants to do well for Everton in their memories. "Playing well will make them very happy," he says almost in a whisper. "Yes I miss China, it is my homeland. I miss my mother and I will be so happy when she can visit me next month." Her traditional home cooking is one of the things he misses about home. But he is setting his sights high on the football field. "My ambition is to be the best footballer in the world," he adds. "I understand the situation here at Everton and will play when the manager requires me to play. "I will earn my place and I hope that people will believe in me, because I will always give my best." He is aware that he is seen as a footballing hero among thousands of football followers in China and the Far East. But to Li Weifeng the real heroes are his brother and father and his thoughts are to look forward to a long career in their memories.

Hero's return
Sep 19 2002 Liverpool Echo
GREAT MINDS...Howard Kendall drops in on David Moyes
LOOK who's back at Bellefield!
The most successful manager in Everton Football Club's history dropped in this week to meet the man currently charged with restoring the club's former glories. Howard Kendall managed the Blues on three occasions, but during his first spell between 1981 and 1987 presided over an era which saw the club collect two League titles, a European trophy, the FA Cup and three Charity Shields.
He left the club for the last time in 1998, but popped back yesterday to see how the new boy was faring. The two will meet again on November 11, when Moyes will hand over a trophy to Kendall at a tribute dinner to celebrate his achievements as Everton's most successful ever manager.

Fantastic Blues centenary CDs to be won
Sep 19 2002 Liverpool Echo
IT didn't knock that other Evertonian's band off the number one slot, but the Blues' 100 Years CD is still selling well alongside Atomic Kitten's chart-topper. Available from the Megastore and all good record shops for £4.95, we have 10 free copies to give away. Featuring four tracks - No Other Team, Come All ye Faithful, and karaoke versions of each of those two tracks - we want you to tell us the name of the Everton Cup final song which reached the heady heights of number 14 in 1985, in spite of a scary performance on Wogan featuring the tightest Le Coq Sportif tracksuits ever witnessed on television. Write the title with your name and address on a postcard to: Blues CD Competition, Echo Sports Desk, Old Hall Street, Liverpool, L69 3EB.

Duncan has long way to go - Moyes
Sep 19 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
DUNCAN FERGUSON completed 90 minutes for the first time in five months last night, but the striker is far from playing himself back into David Moyes' first team plans. Ferguson got through a Blues reserve match against Birmingham City at Solihull Borough, watched by his manager, but Moyes said today: "I'm not even thinking about the first team for Duncan yet. We'll see how he is today.
"He needs fitness. He's not physically fit enough yet to start a Premiership game." Everton have another reserve match next Tuesday against Manchester City which, barring any reaction to his back problem, Ferguson will be pencilled in for. Goalkeeper Richard Wright, however, came through the match with no ill effects and is in line for a recall at Villa Park on Sunday. But an instant comeback is not guaranteed. "Nobody is an automatic selection here," said Moyes. "Richard got the game under his belt last night, but Paul Gerrard did okay on Saturday. "We will have to look at it tomorrow and Saturday then we will select who we think is the best choice for this particular game." Central defenders Li Wei Feng and Sean O'Hanlon both failed late fitness tests for last night's game. Feng picked up a knock to his back in training the day before, while O'Hanlon has a slight strain.
That left coach Andy Holden with Youth Academy defender Rob Southern and George Pilkington as his only centre-halves. The Blues led three times before conceding twice in the final 10 minutes to lose 4-3.

Lorimer Make peace with Weir
By Ian Rodgers, Daily Post
Sep 20 2002
FORMER Scotland international Peter Lorimer has urged Berti Vogts to make his peace with Christian Dailly and David Weir ahead of the crucial Euro 2004 qualifier in Iceland. West Ham manager Glenn Roeder has joined Everton counterpart David Moyes' criticism of Vogts for publicly chastising both players after the embarrassing 2-2 draw in the Faroe Islands. The Upton Park boss claimed the criticism of Dailly had "wounded" the Hammers central defender while Moyes wrote to the Scottish Football Association for an explanation of Vogts' words. But Lorimer, who represented Scotland in the 1974 World Cup, believes Vogts is not in a position to jettison the Premiership players ahead of the crucial game in Reykjavik next month. Lorimer said: "If he is planning on using them again, he should ring them and try to sort the matter out. "In my opinion, they are two of the better players available to him for selection. "They have had a bad time and bad games do happen for players.
"It is Berti Vogts' decision on what he does but he is not in a position to be upsetting some of the players we have. "We need to have the players pulling in the same direction and he doesn't want to break the squad up. "He should be trying to get the best out of them rather than upsetting the apple cart. Iceland will be a massive game."

Rooney tunes Blues in to triumph
Fanscene By Mark O'Brien, Daily Post
Sep 20 2002
WELL, another one bites the dust in training.
Sultry samba star Rodrigo (left) has ruptured a cruciate ligament and joins the almost mythical Joseph Yobo on the sidelines. How we long for the days of doughty stalwarts like Danny Williamson.
If Yobo ever does recover and is actually any good then he will surely walk into the side if Saturday's performance was anything to go by. In fairness the stewards almost had to open the gates at half-time to let the smell of the whole team out they stunk so much, but the way in which Massimo Maccarone outstripped the defence at every turn was particularly alarming. Luckily David Moyes worked his magic at half-time and the Blues took the game to a much-improved Middlesbrough.
Wayne Rooney's introduction was the main catalyst and we perhaps saw for the first time a few glimpses of what he is all about. A vicious free-kick and one determined run from his own half gave an idea of his ability, but what was more important was his single-mindedness and obvious determination. While the incident with Mark Schwarzer earned him a booking it also showed a certain defiance and contempt for the opposition that a few more of our players could do with - that nasty streak that a lot of the best players have, and indeed need. Just as satisfying as Rooney's performance was Kevin Campbell's match-winning brace. He got kicked everywhere by Ugo Ehiogu but kept coming back for more and ultimately got his reward. Perhaps on Sunday it will be Tomasz Radzinski's turn to get the luck in front of goal that his tireless, unselfish performances deserve.
Knowing our luck, though, Peter Enckelman will have sewn up that hole in his foot by the weekend and he'll play a blinder. We must be prepared for a Villa backlash after that humiliating defeat, especially as Graham Taylor is bound to replace the comical Marcus Allback and Juan Pablo Angel with the far more potent looking Dion Dublin and Darius Vassell. Moyes may also have a number of striking options available to him soon in light of Duncan Ferguson and Nick Chadwick's 90-minute run-outs for the reserves on Wednesday. Rumour also has it that when another recovering player, Steve Watson, returns to the first-team fray it will be on the right hand side of midfield and not at rightback. Moyes apparently feels that Tony Hibbert is holding his own at full-back while Watson's energy and ability to go past players may prove a viable alternative to the struggling Niclas Alexandersson. Squad rotation Goodison style. Real Madrid eat your heart out.

Syme's timely return boosts Blues
Academy Football By Chris Wright, Daily Post
Sep 20 2002
EVERTON under-19s look to build on their first win of the FA Premier Academy League season at home to Middlesbrough at Netherton tomorrow (kick-off 1pm). After three defeats last week's 2-0 victory over Huddersfield has boosted the confidence and Colin Harvey's side will now be hoping to get their season going. The return from injury of striker Michael Symes will have been a big boost as prior to that match they had been finding scoring a problem. Although Symes didn't get on the scoresheet, his all-round ability in leading the line has been missed. Last year his strike partner was Wayne Rooney and last week another promising youngster, 15-year-old Paul Hopkins, was on the scoresheet. And with those two involved tomorrow the Blues goal threat should be increased.
Academy director Ray Hall said: "It will give the boys a little bit of confidence and it was nice to see Michael Symes back after his injury problems. It was also good to see Paul Hopkins get on the scoresheet." And on the visitors from Teesside, Hall added: "Middlesbrough are one of the sides we only play once so having home advantage might help us, although it hasn't up to now.
"They will be a strong side because I know Dave Parnaby, their Academy director, very well and they make sure things are done correctly. "But it would be nice for us to follow on from the first team, who beat Middlesbrough last week." There are one or two injury worries with Alan Moogan still out with an eye injury and Craig Garside, who twisted his knee ligaments in the match at Bolton, also doubtful for tomorrow. But Steven Beck, who missed last week's victory over Huddersfield, may return. Hall added: "Craig is not far off, but with Alan we have got to take care with the injury. He is actually fit and taking part in everything else but it is the contact side of it we can't do anything about." The Blues will also monitor the fitness of Steven Schumacher, who was an unused substitute for England under-19s in their 3-1 friendly victory over Hungary in the Hidegkúti Stadium in Budapest on Wednesday night in which former Everton winger Sean Doherty - now at Fulham - scored the opening goal. The 18-year-old defender should play tomorrow and he will hope to continue his progress with the Blues and try to earn another call-up for the England squad for their final warm-up fixture against Yugoslavia before the UEFA U19s European Championship qualifiers against Macedonia, Moldova and Romania in November. Wayne Rooney could also figure after being left out of Wednesday's squad due to his exertions with David Moyes' first team. Alan Harper's under-17s have no game this week, but will be back in Academy League action next Saturday at Manchester United.

Rooney tunes Blues in to triumph
Fanscene By Mark O'Brien, Daily Post
Sep 20 2002
WELL, another one bites the dust in training.
Sultry samba star Rodrigo has ruptured a cruciate ligament and joins the almost mythical Joseph Yobo on the sidelines. How we long for the days of doughty stalwarts like Danny Williamson.
If Yobo ever does recover and is actually any good then he will surely walk into the side if Saturday's performance was anything to go by. In fairness the stewards almost had to open the gates at half-time to let the smell of the whole team out they stunk so much, but the way in which Massimo Maccarone outstripped the defence at every turn was particularly alarming. Luckily David Moyes worked his magic at half-time and the Blues took the game to a much-improved Middlesbrough.
Wayne Rooney's introduction was the main catalyst and we perhaps saw for the first time a few glimpses of what he is all about. A vicious free-kick and one determined run from his own half gave an idea of his ability, but what was more important was his single-mindedness and obvious determination. While the incident with Mark Schwarzer earned him a booking it also showed a certain defiance and contempt for the opposition that a few more of our players could do with - that nasty streak that a lot of the best players have, and indeed need. Just as satisfying as Rooney's performance was Kevin Campbell's match-winning brace. He got kicked everywhere by Ugo Ehiogu but kept coming back for more and ultimately got his reward. Perhaps on Sunday it will be Tomasz Radzinski's turn to get the luck in front of goal that his tireless, unselfish performances deserve.
Knowing our luck, though, Peter Enckelman will have sewn up that hole in his foot by the weekend and he'll play a blinder. We must be prepared for a Villa backlash after that humiliating defeat, especially as Graham Taylor is bound to replace the comical Marcus Allback and Juan Pablo Angel with the far more potent looking Dion Dublin and Darius Vassell. Moyes may also have a number of striking options available to him soon in light of Duncan Ferguson and Nick Chadwick's 90-minute run-outs for the reserves on Wednesday. Rumour also has it that when another recovering player, Steve Watson, returns to the first-team fray it will be on the right hand side of midfield and not at rightback. Moyes apparently feels that Tony Hibbert is holding his own at full-back while Watson's energy and ability to go past players may prove a viable alternative to the struggling Niclas Alexandersson. Squad rotation Goodison style. Real Madrid eat your heart out.

Keepers in firing line
Sep 20 2002 By Howard Kendall, Liverpool Echo
ALL eyes will be on the goalkeepers when Everton play at Villa Park on Sunday.
Graham Taylor must decide whether to continue with Peter Enckelman after that incredible slip-up at Birmingham. I think he will resist the temptation to change things around and will stick with Enckelman. He will say before the game: "I'm backing you, son - out you go". That mistake will live with him for a long time, but the way for Enckelman to get the fans behind him again is to get back playing as quickly as possible. Taylor must have enough confidence in the lad if he was willing to let Peter Schmeichel go. In many ways David Moyes has the harder decision to make. Richard Wright is fit again, so does he bring him back in? Apart from the goal, I thought Paul Gerrard was excellent against Middlesbrough last Saturday. The manager must decide whether to recall Wright. He obviously bought him to be his number one, but he let in four goals during his comeback game in the reserves on Wednesday night. It is down to whether David Moyes has seen enough of Richard Wright for him to come straight back in. I think it is a good time for Everton to be meeting Aston Villa. Losing the first Birmingham derby in many years can't have been easy for them. You have to wonder how the keeper and the players will react to losing 3-0. It is vital that Everton start the game positively and force Villa into errors. The character of the home side will be tested. Their fans are not happy.
Basics so vital
IT IS always disappointing to concede a goal from a set piece. I have always insisted you have two men on the goal posts during corners. You have to protect the goalkeeper. Failure to do that probably cost Middlesbrough a point at Everton last week. You can talk all you want about coaching and players' performances, but you have got to get the basics right.

Wright on track for Villa Park
Sep 20 2002 By Scott Mcleod, Liverpool Echo
DAVID Moyes takes his Everton team to Villa Park on Sunday unconcerned about the prospect of a backlash from the West Midlands outfit after their humiliating derby defeat at Birmingham.
Graham Taylor's side went down 3-0 to their newly promoted rivals last Monday in the first league derby between the two clubs for 16 years. The former England boss has made it clear his side will be eager to make amends this weekend against Everton. But Moyes is confident his side can build on last weekend's 2-1 victory over Middlesbrough by adding to Villa's woes. He said: "I'm not so sure about a backlash. They will be disappointed after Monday, but it was only three points lost. It was a big derby game for them, but it was probably more important for Birmingham. "Villa played well in the second half until that bizarre own goal from Peter Enckelman put the game beyond them. I'm sure that is what they are concentrating on." Moyes has a great deal of faith in his own team and believes a repeat of the kind of form which has been present in recent weeks should be enough to give Blues fans something to celebrate on Sunday night. He added: "We got a good three points last weekend against Boro. We have played better than that this season and lost, but now it's important to build on that win. "With the exception of the first 45 minutes last week, our performances have been good. We need to maintain that and make sure our good performances lead to results."
Richard Wright is set to return to the Everton starting line-up after coming through a reserve match unscathed earlier this week. The England international has been sidelined since the away win at Sunderland because of a hand injury, but he is now fully fit and ready to replace Paul Gerrard.

Vassell set for return
Sep 20 2002 Liverpool Echo
ASTON Villa striker Darius Vassell is set to return to the starting line- up for Sunday's Villa Park clash against Everton. The England international proved his fitness after hamstring problems with a second-half appearance during Villa's 3-0 defeat at Birmingham City on Monday night.
Vassell could replace Juan Pablo Angel, who was forced off at halftime against Birmingham after suffering a leg injury. Villa's Welsh international right-back Mark Delaney is also pushing hard for a recall after a two-match absence with a calf strain. Goalkeeper Peter Enckleman will retain his place in the side after being given a vote of confidence by manager Graham Taylor following the bizarre own goal that he conceded against Birmingham. Birmingham could be without midfielder Robbie Savage and striker Clinton Morrison for tomorrow's clash with Middlesbrough at the Riverside Stadium. Welsh international Savage and Republic of Ireland international Morrison were both injured against Villa. Savage suffered a gashed leg and damage to his ribs while Morrison is struggling with an Achilles problem. Jamaican interational Darryl Powell is on alert to take over from Savage while Geoff Horsfield will step in if Morrison is ruled out.

Chadwick's big season
Sep 20 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
VILLA PARK holds bitter-sweet memories for young Everton forward Nick Chadwick.
It was at the historic old stadium that he made his first meaningful breakthrough into Everton's first team in January. But the same night he also sustained an ankle injury which troubled him for the next six months. Now, finally, recovered from that niggling problem, he hopes Villa Park can provide him with another springboard towards the first team this weekend. Chadwick warmed up with two goals for Everton Reserves in Birmingham on Wednesday. Now he's itching to get back there on Sunday and face Villa. "I'd played a reserve team game at Villa Park before I went there with the first team and it's a magnificent stadium," he said this week. "I like Villa Park a lot. That's where I came on last season and had a few efforts. It's also where I injured my ankle! But it holds fond memories for me. Obviously it's the manager's decision whether it will hold any more for me this weekend." Chadwick is the first to admit he needs to work on several facets of his game. But the hardest art to coach, putting the ball past a goalkeeper, is the one he seems most comfortable with.
Twenty-one goals in 27 Youth Academy starts in 2000-01 showed Everton had unearthed a young forward who stood out amongst his own Under-19 age group. But by ending the season with another six strikes in nine Reserve League runouts - many of them as substitute - he showed he could also convert chances against more experienced players. But the ultimate step-up is into the Premiership - and following David Moyes' arrival at Goodison, Chadwick was used on five occasions on that stage. Only one was a full 90-minute run-out from the start, but he still responded with three, very different goals. Any hope of building on that progress this season, however, was interrupted by injury. "It's been an extremely frustrating start to the season for me," he explained. "I worked hard through the summer, and thought the injury had cleared up, only to find as soon as I went to Austria and kicked a ball that it hadn't done. "That put me back a couple of months and it has been frustrating watching the lads. We have gone out and played well but have been unlucky. As a player you want to get out on the pitch and help, so I'm just glad to be back now. "I got through 90 minutes last week against Manchester United reserves with no reaction and played another 90 on Wednesday. "We're creating chances and I'd like to think that if I could get back to full sharpness again I would be able to take some of those chances and help the team. "But anybody you speak to at Bellefield will tell you that the more games I play the better I get. I never come straight back flying after injury, but after a couple of games I find my form again and hopefully I ' l l be included again soon." Chadwick added: "I think this is a big season for me. Last season it was frustrating waiting for my chance, then it finally came and I'd like to think that I took it. "But I think this season I need to show that that was no fluke, and that the potential I showed last season can be transferred into regular, decent performances. "Throughout the squad there is competition for places now. which is what the manager is looking for. The forward positions are no different. "Duncan came through 90 minutes on Wednesday and did well, Joe-Max is fit again, Kevin, Tomasz and Wayne have all done well when they have played this season. "There's six of us now, and only two or three positions, so it's up to me to force the manager's hand. "But hopefully if I can just keep scoring goals and get match-fit my chance will come."

Everton's all new effort
By Mark Lawrenson, Daily Post
Sep 21 2002
EVERTON were as lucky at home against Middlesbrough last week as they were unlucky against Southampton the game before. Speaking to some of my pals who went to the Boro game, they say that if it had been played before David Moyes' arrival then Everton would have lost. Moyes has engendered a real fighting spirit and togetherness among his players, and it is a good sign that the Blues were able to produce a much improved second half performance after a frankly rubbish show before the interval. That said, they cannot afford too many performances like they showed in the first half against Middlesbrough, otherwise they will find themselves getting turned over on a regular basis. Kevin Campbell has been a target for the boo boys lately, but he has stuck at it and his two goals on Saturday were well deserved. Everton have needed a regular goalscorer for some time now, but at the moment it would appear Campbell has found some form in front of goal.
Wayne Rooney may not have scored yet but that is not a worry to me. He is still only 16, and the goals will come, and the least amount of pressure he is under then the better his career will develop.
He proved the catalyst for Everton's revival at Goodison on Saturday, but Moyes must take some credit for playing three strikers in the second half and pushing Middlesbrough back. Richard Wright made his comeback in the reserves in midweek and he will probably be back in goal against Aston Villa tomorrow. He has not had the best of starts to his Everton career - the Goodison goalkeeping jinx strikes again! - but he will come good. Duncan Ferguson also returned but everyone now realises that Everton cannot rely on him to play too many consecutive games. In seasons past, even if he was three or four games away from full fitness, Ferguson would have been thrown into the first team because, Everton did not have any other options. Now with the emergence of Rooney and the likes of Campbell and Tomasz Radzinski finding some form, that is not the case. It is a make-or-break season for Ferguson. As for tomorrow, I think Everton can gain a point from their trip to Villa Park, but exciting it won't be.

Moyes calls on killer instinct
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 21 2002
DAVID MOYES wants Everton to bring a killer instinct on their travels tomorrow as they aim to increase Aston Villa's blues. Missed chances have cost the Goodison club dear on their last two away days as they slipped to defeat at both Manchester City and Southampton. And as they strive to correct that away run against Graham Taylor's side, still reeling from their embarrassing derby defeat by Birmingham on Monday, the Everton manager has called for an end to his side's generosity. Moyes, who could hand Richard Wright a recall at Villa Park, said: "Away from home we need to start taking our chances. "It is different at home where you can keep the pressure on but when you're away you've got to take the chances you get. And we've had the opportunites.
"Against Manchester City we had the ball for 70 minutes following the sending off while we limited Southampton to just one chance all night. "But the fact is we need to take our chances and get more points. I think we have performed well and should have a few more points than we actually do, although we were a bit fortunate to take all three against Middlesbrough. "We've made chances, created chances, so that is a good sign, and I hope it is something we can continue to do."
Moyes is still without Alessandro Pistone, Joseph Yobo and Duncan Ferguson - suffering from a swollen ankle after his midweek reserve display - while the unfortunate Rodrigo has flown back to Brazil for an operation on his ruptured cruciate knee ligament. Gary Naysmith does return, however, as Moyes revealed the summer slog put in by Kevin Campbell has been a major factor in the striker's return to form. Campbell clinched last Saturday's win for Everton with his first Goodison league goals for a year and Moyes said: "Kevin has not missed five minutes training since we reported back for pre-season. He's done everything and now he's getting the benefits.
"He's keeping his fitness levels up with regular work and he's been the one providing us with strength up front while also looking after Radzinski and Rooney."

Moyes faces keeper puzzler
By Andy Hunter And Paul Walker, Daily Post
Sep 21 2002
EVERTON manager David Moyes admits to having sympathy for the ridiculed Peter Enckelman - as he prepares to adopt a ruthless streak to solve his own keeper conundrum. Having struggled to fill the number one slot in recent weeks, even playing without a substitute keeper at Southampton, Moyes has three finally fit and available for tomorrow's trip to Villa Park. Summer signing Richard Wright is back in contention following a hand injury, but knows he faces a fight to reclaim his place from Paul Gerrard who was in commanding form against Middlesbrough last week. But whoever he selects - and Wright is favourite - Moyes hopes they do not end up sharing the same spotlight that has fallen on Finnish keeper Enckelman this week. It was Enckelman who was responsible for the daftest goal of the season when he let an Olof Mellberg long throw brush under his foot and roll in the net as Villa lost 3-0 in the Birmingham derby on Monday. Since then Enckelman has been something of a laughing stock. Now Goodison Park boss Moyes says: "You don't like to see any professional suffering and being the butt of all the jokes this week, but it's something that happens if you're in the game. "But whatever you say, these things can affect your confidence, and we have to see if we can profit ourselves from it." Moyes knows that Villa will be desperate to bounce back from their derby defeat. He added: "If it had been a ball played out to a winger and he'd let the ball run under his foot, nobody would have said anything. "These things happen but when it happens to a goalkeeper the consequences are grave, and that's the case here." Villa will clearly have some worries about their keeper tomorrow but Moyes could not be happier to have three to choose from.
In Wright's absence both Gerrard and Steve Simonsen have come into the side, with the ex-Oldham man a pivotal figure in keeping Middlesbrough at bay a week ago. Moyes said: "What has happened to us shows you do need three keepers, but there is no dilemma for me now all three are fit.
"Richard seems fine. He's trained well and we finished off the session with a lot of shooting. He stills feel the odd twinge but he'll be back in and around the squad. "Paul and Steve both did fine when they were in the side so this is a situation I am more than happy to have. "It's smashing to have competition for places. There are lots of players pushing those in the team." Wright has endured a rollercoaster start to his Everton career since his £3.5m move from Arsenal and admits he is now back to square one after his month- long absence. "Paul had an excellent game against Middlesbrough so it gives the manager a decision to make," said Wright. "I've just got to keep working hard and get back into the team. "If selected, I am ready."

Taylor: We'll get over despair
By Mark Staniforth, Daily Post
Sep 21 2002
ASTON Villa boss Graham Taylor has trawled through some of his own moments of managerial adversity to help get beleaguered goalkeeper Peter Enckelman back on track. Enckelman is expected to keep his place for tomorrow's clash against Everton despite his bizarre error on Monday which set Birmingham on their way to a 3-0 derby win. Some of Taylor's experiences left him well qualified to put a reassuring arm around his goalkeeper's shoulder this week and point him firmly towards the future. Taylor said: "I've experienced that sort of adversity so I've been able to help and advise Peter. You just become mentally stronger out of it all and I've got no reason to doubt that won't happen to him. "The more people talk about it the harder it is to put it into perspective.
"He's miscontrolled the ball and it's gone into the net - thousands and thousands of outfield players have done that. The only way it becomes a problem is if Peter makes it a problem. He's got the character to get over it but emotionally he's bound to be bruised." Taylor has inevitably felt some extra pressure on himself since that capitulation to their rivals. He may make changes up front with Darius Vassell standing by for a recall to the starting line-up after replacing Juan Pablo Angel at half-time at St Andrews. Mark Delaney and Hassan Kachloul are major doubts but Thomas Hitzlsperger is available again after recovering from a virus. "The Birmingham result does add to the pressure," added Taylor. "The only thing I do get a bit annoyed about is when people suggest that either myself or the players don't care - that's just not true. "It is frustrating that we are not getting the results. But you've got to stay positive or you don't stand a chance. I'm not going to make any excuses - the results are there. But what I do know is that behind these results there is a good team."
Taylor's sentiment is echoed by Norwegian-Ronny Johnsen, who has started to adapt to his new role in front of Villa's back three. Johnsen is gradually putting his Old Trafford injury woes behind him but knows the results must start coming if his new team are to live up to their potential.
"Everyone knows it was a big game for us and it was a huge disappointment for the supporters and for us all on the staff. "A lot of things didn't go for us in that match and we were unlucky but you can't look back. "Things like Peter's mistake just happen in football and you've got to get over it."

Wright on
Sep 21 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
RICHARD WRIGHT is ready to step back into the goalkeeping spotlight for Everton at Villa Park tomorrow, but he hopes the focus stays firmly on the man in the opposite goalmouth.
After Peter Enckelman's high profile blunder during the televised Birmingham derby on Monday night, the Sky cameras will be on Villa again as the Finn tries to put the clanger behind him.
But the match could also be a big one for Wright, as he gets ready to reclaim his place after three games on the sidelines through injury. "If selected I am ready," he said yesterday "but Paul Gerrard has played well in the games he has been in. "I think in the last game against Middlesbrough Gez had a very good game, so it gives the manager a decision to make, which is what he is there for.
"I have just got to keep working hard now and get back into the team. I am going to go out and train, put things right that need to be put right, work hard and get myself right for selection on Sunday."
It was Wright's eagerness to push himself back into the first team reckoning which cost him a longer lay-off than expected. He injured his arm in a collision with Everton old boy Gavin McCann early in the match at Sunderland, but finished the game and had 10 days to recover before the visit of Birmingham. "I was looking to try and play and push myself forward for the game against Birmingham," he explained. "You just want to keep playing, keep in the team and keep working hard and when you are brought out of the team for an injury it is very disappointing. "I think doing that fitness test actually put me back. I tried to push it too early and it set me back again. "Then it was a case of going to see the right people and getting the right advice. "Rest was the only cure, which was really frustrating for me because it was just my hand which was affected. "Physically I was right all the time --I just couldn't put a flat hand on the ball - but the hand's good now and it's just a case of working hard and giving the manager a selection problem." David Moyes is expected to recall the young 'keeper, but is still waiting on Joseph Yobo, yet to start a game since his summer move to Goodison.

Perfect boost for 'Rod'
Sep 21 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
SIDE-LINED: Rodrigo faces a lengthy injury lay-off INJURED Everton star Rodrigo has been given a boost, from a team-mate at Everton who knows exactly what he is going through.
Italian defender Alessandro Pistone sustained exactly the same injury as Rodrigo, a ruptured cruciate ligament, early in his own Everton career, but he bounced back to full fitness and hopes his example can inspire the Brazilian. "I can understand how Rodrigo is feeling," said Pistone. "It is a serious injury, but it happens to so many players now who come back exactly the same as before.
"My situation was a bit different because I had just signed a five-year contract and I knew I had the time to show how I could play. "But I think Rodrigo has signed for just one year, so it's worse for him than me. I am sure he will do everything to get back as soon as possible." Pistone was a model patient, recovering from his injury to be back playing again almost six months to the day. He added: "It is serious, because you have to stay out for four or five months, maybe even six months. That depends on the person. "But worse things can happen and he will do everything to be back playing as soon as he can. "I have spoken to him and obviously he is a bit down, but I can tell you he is already thinking about doing everything right to make sure he does not lose too much time."
Moyes will have goalkeeper Richard Wright back in contention after his arm injury, but will not risk Duncan Ferguson in the side, despite the Scottish striker playing a full reserve game in midweek to try to prove he is over his back injury. But while Moyes has his number one choice stopper available, he is aware Villa have a few problems over their man between the posts. While Moyes has sympathy for Peter Enckelman after his midweek howler against Birmingham City, the Everton manager wants his side to take advantage of the Finn's misery. "You don't like to see any professional suffering and being humiliated and the butt of all the jokes this week, but it's something that happens if you are in the game," said Moyes "But whatever you say, these things can affect your confidence, and we have to make sure that, if we can, we profit ourselves from it."
Moyes added: "If it had been a ball played out to a winger and he'd let the ball run under his foot, nobody would have said anything. "The same if the ball had been played up to the centre forward and he had mis-controlled it. "But when it happens to a goalkeeper, the consequences are grave and that's the case here. "The player will be more disappointed with his touch than anything else; it's his control he'll be annoyed about." While Villa will clearly have some concern about their goalkeeper tomorrow, Moyes could not be happier to have three - all of whom have played this season - to chose from. While Wright has been recovering from an arm injury, both Paul Gerrard and Steve Simonsen have come into the side and done well. Moyes said: "What has happened to us shows you do need three keepers, but there is no dilemma for me now all three are fit.
"Paul Gerrard and Steve Simonsen both did fine when they were in the side so this is a situation I am more than happy to have. "It's smashing to have competition for places, there are lots of players pushing those in the team."

Moyes holds Taylor in great respect
Sep 21 2002 By Paul Walker
DAVID MOYES comes up against one of the managers he admires most in the game when he takes Everton to Villa Park tomorrow. The Everton boss has only been a boss in the Barclaycard Premiership since March, but admits to having immense respect for Villa chief Graham Taylor.
Taylor has not always found himself the mostloved former England manager, but Moyes said: "I have a lot of respect for Graham Taylor. "He's managed his country and to get that sort of job you've had to be asuccess at your job in the past, you don't get the England job without any success.
"He's manager of a big club now and I'm sure he's enjoying it. "He was a manager I have come up against on many occasions because of histime at Watford and he has always done well at his clubs.
"It may be will take him a little time to get Aston Villa how he wants, but he'll achieve that."

Sometimes mistakes happen- Johnsen
Sep 21 2002 By Mark Staniforth, Liverpool Echo
RONNY JOHNSEN has urged his Aston Villa team-mate Peter Enckelman to forget all about his Monday night horror show against Birmingham. Johnsen admitted he was shocked when he turned round and saw the young goalkeeper fluff a throw-in and let in one of the most embarrassing goals in Premier League history. But the former Manchester United defender claims the club have rallied around Enckelman and fully backed him to maintain his place in the starting line-up for tomorrow's clash with Everton. Johnsen said: "Things like Peter's mistake just happen in football and you've just got to get over it. "I think the best thing for us all is to look forward. We just have to get a few good results and then we will be back on track." Johnsen has adapted to his new role in central midfield this season despite his reputation with Manchester United as an uncompromising central defender.
He is set to retain his place in Graham Taylor's starting line-up, but there are major doubts over Mark Delaney (calf) and Hassan Kachloul (thigh). Taylor too has thrown his support behind Enckelman and trawled through some of his own bad moments to help get the goalkeeper focussed again. "I've experienced that sort of adversity, so I've been able to help and advise Peter," said the former England manager. "You just become mentally stronger out of it all and I've got no reason to doubt that it won't happen to him. "The more people talk about it the harder it is to put it into perspective. "He's miscontrolled the ball and it's gone into the net --thousands and thousands of outfield players have done that. "The only way it becomes a problem is if Peter makes it a problem. He's got the character to get over it, but emotionally he's bound to be bruised." Taylor has inevitably felt some extra pressure on himself since that capitulation to their rivals. And he may be tempted to make changes up front with Darius Vassell standing by for a recall to the starting line-up after replacing Juan Pablo Angel at half-time at St Andrews. "The Birmingham result does add to the pressure," claimed Taylor. "The only thing I do get a bit annoyed about is when people suggest that either myself or the players don't care - that's just not true."

Aston Villa 3, Everton 2 (D,Post)
Andy Hunter Reports From Villa Park, Daily Post
Sep 23 2002
THERE MUST be some magic ingredients in Everton's halftime cup of tea. What a pity they don't sip any of it before kick-off. After a first-half display in which they were left praying for an Olof Mellberg throw-in, Everton produced another stunning transformation to keep the wrath of their fans on hold. Unlike against Middlesbrough, however, they did not emerge from their cocoon with the victory that would have stopped their manager's barely concealed fury. David Moyes admitted he was "sick" at how his team dragged themselves out of the two-goal hole dug during a lame 47-minute showing only to throw it all away when they allowed Dion Dublin to poke home an 85th-minute winner for Aston Villa. The Blues boss pinpointed the football that followed Kevin Campbell's 65th-minute leveller as the source of his anger, as Everton climbed the mountain only to collapse in sight of the peak. But surely the latest weak start to a game from his side must be high on his list of concerns. A third successive away defeat against another side points should be taken from if this season is to break the misery and fears of recent years is a worrying statistic, especially with Old Trafford the next away destination. Particularly galling for Moyes and Evertonians is the evidence in front their eyes that, at times, their side undoubtedly has the quality to progress this season but also the masochistic tendency to unravel any good work they do. The dreadful defending that allowed Lee Hendrie to smack two quality strikes past Richard Wright was just the present Graham Taylor needed following the Midlands derby misery of the previous Monday.
Then when Tomasz Radzinski and Campbell hauled the Blues back into the contest, Everton delivered yet another surprising turnaround - from Comeback Kings to the Keystone Cops, and served up a comedy of errors for Villa's third. Everton's problems in front of goal away from home this season have been well documented. It is the turmoil at the back and over-relience on a halftime rollicking, however, that are the main culprits for the team's all-too familiar and poor league position. As if to remedy the wastefulness that cost Everton dear at Maine Road and St Mary's, Moyes' favoured threepronged strikeforce was unleashed for the first time in an away game this season. The idea may have been to pile more pressure on to the fragile confidence of Villa keeper Peter Enckelman following his howler in the derby defeat by Birmingham. But if that was the plan there was no supporting evidence as the Finn received the easiest possible ride in the first half from a toothless Everton attack. Despite Paul Gerrard's fine display against Middlesbrough it was no surprise to see Wright handed an instant recall after his month-long absence. No place is guaranteed under Moyes but after splashing out an initial £3.5million on the 24-year-old in the summer, and admitting the former Arsenal man needs to be played back to full form and confidence, Wright is an exception to that rule. And it was the Everton keeper with by far the toughest assignment as dire distribution from those in front of him, a lethargic midfield and subdued strikers, contrived to gift struggling Villa a comfortable two-goal lead. The danger signs were clear from the off, as Ulises de la Cruz gave David Unsworth a torrid time down the Villa right and the home side dominated the midfield exchanges. So there was no shock about the source or timing of the breakthrough, even if Hendrie's finish was from the top drawer. Ex-Hibernian winger de la Cruz found acres of space before finding Hendrie on the edge of the area. He had few options open but curled a delightful effort over Wright and into the top corner on seven minutes. The Blues keeper (right) came to the rescue when Gareth Barry was then invited to try his luck from range minutes later, as Villa were first to every ball, and cruising. Concern at Everton's afternoon was not only confined to their performance, as the over-reliance on Wayne Rooney to weave his magic and save his side was quickly on display. While Villa's FA Youth Cup final star Stefan Moore, three years Rooney's senior, sat on the bench the visitors' great teenage hope was at the heart of trying to instigate an Everton rescue mission. The 16-year-old dropped out of the forward line to help orchestrate matters from midfield. Booked for blocking a touchline run by Darius Vassell, Rooney clearly relished the extra responsibility but until their latest second revival the Blues were all possession but no penetration. Enckelman was only troubled by back-passes and a Li Tie drive that flashed inches wide, while the home side were dangerous with every attack as Wright again was called upon to block England striker Vassell's closerange shot. Not for the first time this season the Everton manager had his work cut out getting his team into gear at the interval, but hopes of a rapid response all but disappeared as his men shot themselves in the foot two minutes after the restart.
Again de la Cruz had the freedom of Villa Park to deliver from the right. The marking on Barry was bad enough as he rose unmarked at the back post but criminal on Hendrie as he gratefully smacked home the knock-down unopposed. Everton's response was the one positive branch to grasp from the afternoon. They tore into Villa and their lifeline arrived when Gravesen finally managed to get a pass to his own man and Radzinski fired a low left-foot shot beyond Enckelman from the edge of the area. Even at 2-1 the Blues looked the more likely winners, although when Enckelman produced a sublime stop to keep out C ampbell's flying header it seemed his atonement would come at Everton's expense. That view was shortlived as for the second match in succession Campbell met a Gravesen corner at the near post and flicked a header home. Now it was game on for an Everton victory. Or at least it should have been. The Blues were in total command, Villa despondent and in disarray. As the home fans called for Taylor's head he threw on Dublin and Moore in desperation, and was rewarded as his opponents simply fell apart. David Weir's mistake let Vassell run clear and only a fine Wright parry spared the Scot's blushes. Then Alan Stubbs completely misjudged an Enckelman clearance and the England striker headed inches wide of an open goal. Moyes' men were living on their luck, but it ran out with five minutes remaining as Mellberg and then Dublin, despite the presence of three Blue shirts and Wright well-placed on his goal-line, was able to nudge Mark Kinsella's corner home. Yet again Everton had scandalously wasted precious points on their travels.
They have no-one to blame but themselves.
ASTON VILLA (3-5-2): Enckelman; Mellberg, Johnson, Staunton; de la Cruz (Leonhardsen 75), Hendrie, Kinsella, Barry, Samuel; Crouch (Dublin 81), Vassell (Moore 81). Subs: Angel, Postma.
EVERTON (4-3-3): Wright; Hibbert, Weir, Stubbs, Unsworth; Li Tie, Gravesen, Pembridge; Rooney (Alexandersson 77), Campbell, Radzinski. Subs: Naysmith, Wei Feng, Linderoth, Gerrard.
BOOKINGS: Everton's Rooney (foul)
REFEREE: Jeff Winter
ATT: 30,023
MAN OF THE MATCH: Wayne Rooney Once again Everton's best hope, and at times their only hope, with a mature performance that was undisturbed by his tactical switch.

We gave it away
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 23 2002
FURIOUS David Moyes admitted he felt "sick" after watching his Everton side squander a point at Villa Park yesterday. The Blues were on course for at least a draw after battling back from two goals down against Aston Villa, only to slump to a third successive away defeat when Dion Dublin poked in an 85th-minute winner. And the defeat left Moyes, who saw Tomasz Radinski and Kevin Campbell cancel out Lee Hendrie's brace for Graham Taylor's team, seething at his side's " overexcited" response. Moyes raged: "We got ourselves back into it and then produced our worst football of the day after our second goal. That led to the pressure which in turn led to their winner. "Once we equalised we looked the only team who would go on to win it, no question. But we continuously gave the ball away after our second goal whereas before it we'd bossed periods of the game with our passing. "We needed the players to be strong, tough and control the ball and they weren't. We produced a catalogue or errors that led to their third goal. I think the players got a bit excited when they pulled it back to 2-2 and tried to be too clever. "They were trying to find the wonder pass that would win the game when we just needed to keep it simple and continue to give Villa the runaround." Villa midfielder Hendrie opened the scoring after only seven minutes and doubled Villa's lead two minutes after the restart before the Blues finally came to life. Campbell's third goal in two matches appeared to put Everton in firm command but instead they dropped to 13th in the table as their travel sickness continued. Moyes added: "I am sick. We are all sick. "We didn't start well and took at least 15 minutes to sort things out but then produced good football without really hurting Aston Villa. "We came out better in the second half but conceded a poor goal straight away, and then we showed the character we have now. "We produced some good play, even at 2-0 down I thought we still had a chance. I expected us to be able to shut up shop because at 2-2 Villa were not a threat at all. "But I think we got carried away with the whole thing after we equalised, we got too excited. They are a big side and I've watched Dublin's goal again and it is horrible."

Aston Villa 3, Everton 2 (Echo)
Sep 23 2002 By David Prentice At Villa Park
FOUR-three-three, or not 4-3-3? That is still the question. But after yesterday's fraught and frantic Villa Park defeat there can only really be one answer. Everton employed the muchdiscussed formation again for the first time in an away match this season, boasted plenty of quality possession - and lost a five-goal thriller. Other questions persist, too.
* Is fit-again Steve Watson so surplus to requirements he cannot even warrant a place on Everton's substitutes' bench?
* Will Joseph Yobo ever add his sorely needed pace to Everton's rearguard?
* Has Wayne Rooney not yet proved his ability to play alongside Kevin Campbell at the front of a solid 4-4-2?
There is little doubt that crass carelessness at the back cost Everton goals yet again. But equally, the players' discomfiture with the playing system was equally as damaging. David Moyes (right) was off his seat more often then a WWF spectator, issuing instructions, barking orders and throwing his arms in the air. But, after retrieving a lost cause with a second half cavalry charge, levelling at 2-2 from 0-2 down, they conceded an 84th minute matchwinner from a corner kick. As a result, Everton are now officially in dangerous lower league reaches, with some horrendous fixtures to come.
With the season still in its formative stages, league positions can alter dramatically after one goal. But Everton's is already beginning to adopt a grimly familiar look. In the brash new Sky era, shades of grey are forbidden. Everything must be black or white, good or bad - title challengers or Euro chasers, Inter-Toto hopefuls or relegation fodder. Every game has to have a hook to hang it on.
This one offered an ideal talking point. Everton, celebrating their 100th season of top flight football, were taking on fellow Football League founder members 114 years to the day that they first clashed.
But Sky preferred to sidestep the proud historical context for a sexier angle. Friday night's preview show told us this was Everton's best start to a season for seven years. Clearly, this has to be put into context against some of the grimmest seasons in the club's rich history, but in any era two home draws and two defeats from six matches did not constitute a flying start. After yesterday's defeat it can now be considered a stuttering one. It took barely six minutes for the Blues to fall behind. Lee Hendrie's finish was outstanding, clipping a right-footed shot into a postage stamp-sized space underneath Richard Wright's crossbar. But the gungho defending which preceded it was poor, but sadly typical of much we have already witnessed this season. Wright flung himself to his right to palm out a long range Gareth Barry shot, but Everton's only threatening moment in the opening 20 minutes came from a stooping Rooney header deflected behind. Kids today are asked to grow up far too quickly. But even by modern standards, Rooney's maturity has been astonishing. In May, he was officially a youth, scoring against Villa in the FA Youth Cup Final. Just four months on and he ran out on the same stage a man. The cynically crafted nudge which sent Darius Vassell tumbling into the running track as the speedy striker hared down the left touchline could have come from a veteran international. So, too, could the series of perceptive passes he threaded into the heart of the Villa penalty area. These came when the youngster had been asked to drop deeper into 'the hole' behind the two forwards, to shore up a midfield which had Gravesen and Tie sloppily conceding possession throughout the first period. The Blues saw plenty of the ball, but created little with it. Li Tie flashed a 20 yard shot narrowly wide, with Enckelman rooted to the spot, but Wright instinctively blocked a close range snap shot from Vassell which might have spun anywhere. Moyes left things alone during the interval, but just two minutes after the restart Everton conceded a desperately sloppy goal. De La Cruz's cross found Barry completely unmarked at the far post, and when he headed the ball back across the six yard box Hendrie was in even more space to crash a rising volley past Wright.
Everton had little time to mope before Tomasz Radzinski (left) rifled in a lifeline. The Canadian's contribution had been woeful before the interval, but he spun beautifully onto Gravesen's pass to crash the ball home. It needed a stunning strike to beat the Finn. His every clearance ironically cheered following Monday night's blunder, he made one superlative stop to parry Campbell's close range header. That stop produced a corner kick, however, which for the second week in succession was devastating. The delivery from Gravesen and Mark Pembridge has been magnificent all season. It's not quite Hinchcliffe to Ferguson just yet, but it's getting there. It was Gravesen who wickedly swerved the ball in this time and Campbell got in front of his marker to glance another exocet past Enckelman. With 25 minutes remaining only one team looked likely winners, but the excitement wasn't only confined to the Royal Blue terraces. Everton began to over-elaborate, looking for 40-yard crossfield passes when a simple 10-yard one might have done, and shell-shocked Villa began to creep back in. Weir missed his kick in the 73rd minute and Vassell streaked clear only to be denied by Wright's outstanding one-handed save. Then Stubbs missed a header from Enckelman's clearance and Vassell headed an even easier chance past Wright but wide. Villa were now in the ascendancy and Stubbs' cleared against Moore, who hooked a shot over. Then Dublin did what he has done so many times to Everton. The Blues' board might have spared the club so much heartache if they had shared Howard Kendall's assessment of the then Manchester United reserve nine years ago.
Kinsella's corner was met by Mellberg, but Dublin found far too much time in a crowded penalty box to control the ball, then hook it past a prematurely falling Wright. Everton's winnable games are passing them by, with the awful prospect of United, Arsenal and Leeds looming on the horizon. Some consistency, both of performance and of selection, is clearly needed quickly.
ASTON VILLA (3-5-2): Enckelman, Mellberg, Johnsen, Staunton, De La Cruz ( Leonhardsen 75 mins), Hendrie, Barry, Kinsella, Crouch (Dublin 81 mins), Vassell (Moore 81 mins). Unused subs: Angel, Postma.
EVERTON (4-3-3): Wright, Hibbert, Weir, Stubbs, Unsworth, Gravesen, Tie, Pembridge, Rooney (Alexandersson 76 mins), Campbell, Radzinski. Unused subs: Naysmith, Feng, Linderoth, Gerrard. GOALS: Hendrie (6 mins) 1-0, Hendrie (47 mins) 2-0, Radzinski (50 mins) 2-1, Campbell (65 mins) 2-2, Dublin (84 mins) 3-2.
REFEREE: Jeff Winter.
BOOKING: Rooney (foul) 18 mins.

Angry Moyes raps defence
Sep 23 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
GRAHAM TAYLOR saluted Everton's unstoppable corner kick deliveries yesterday, but Blues' boss David Moyes was livid at the way his side defended corners of their own. The Blues scored for the second successive weekend from a Thomas Gravesen-Kevin Campbell corner kick routine. And Villa manager Taylor said: "Sometimes you have to give the credit to the attacking team rather than looking to criticise every goal. "Everton's delivery was excellent. You have to get to the ball first from kicks like that, but if you don't there's nothing much you can do about it. "They are very difficult to defend and Everton were threatening from them every time." But the Blues lost the match from a corner kick which Moyes labelled "horrible." "I've seen the goal on the tape and it's horrible," he declared. "If you look at the goal from the start it came from a throw-in on our side of the field. "The left back ran past us, our full-back slipped, then they ran past our centre half and eventually they got it over and conceded a throw-in which we should have done better from and conceded a corner. They are a big side, Villa, and they took advantage. "We had made quite a few mistakes leading up to that which didn't result in goals, but it was building up. "We chose the moment when we'd just got back into it to play our worst football of the day. That led to the pressure which, in turn, led to the third goal. "I think anybody would have said that Everton were the side who would have gone on to win it at 2-2. "We continuously gave the ball away after the second goal, whereas before I thought we had bossed periods of the game. "When we needed them to be strong and tough, take the ball and control and pass it, we didn't do so and eventually a catalogue of mistakes led to the goal. "They got a bit excited when it went to two each and thought they would go and do something clever - hit a wonder pass which might have won the game.
"What we needed was to keep the ball and make Aston Villa continue to run around. "We're sick, because we did okay. We didn't start well and it took 15 minutes to sort things out, but we played some good football after that without really hurting Villa. "We played better after the interval, but found ourselves two goals down from poor goals. "Once again, the players showed the character that they've got now to come back, but maybe got too carried away with the whole thing after the second goal."

Reserves date for Yobo
Sep 23 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
JOSEPH Yobo will make his latest bid to plug the holes in Everton's leaky rearguard tomorrow.
The Nigerian defender (left) has still to make his senior debut since a summer switch from Marseille. But he is lined up to play in tomorrow night's reserve match against Manchester City at the Autoquest Stadium, along with Li Wei Feng and striker Duncan Ferguson. Manager David Moyes will scrutinise the form of his defenders closely, after yesterday's defensive horror show at Villa Park.
work hard this week on eliminating the simple, individual mistakes which are costing us dearly."
Everton have kept just one clean sheet in seven Premiership outings, and many of the 11 goals they have conceded have come from basic errors. But after a desperately disappointing afternoon in Birmingham, Moyes did find one positive. Everton's corner-kick routines produced a goal for the second weekend in succession and he said: " At the moment the delivery from Mark Pembridge and Tommy Gravesen has been excellent. "We are not the biggest side physically, which is why we lost a goal from a corner, so we have had to work hard on our delivery at set pieces. That has been very good." Moyes also rubbished a Sunday newspaper report that he and striker Duncan Ferguson had had a training ground bust-up. "Nothing could be further from the truth," smiled Moyes.

Injury-hit Yobo battles to beat jinx
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 24 2002
DAVID MOYES hopes to see an answer to Everton's defensive prayers at the Halton Stadium tonight where Joseph Yobo steps up his bid for a Premiership debut. The Nigerian international makes his first appearance since aggravating an ankle injury for the second time against Manchester City, with one eye on Saturday's Premiership clash with Fulham. Manager Moyes was left livid at the latest errors to cost his side points at Villa Park on Sunday and is ready to make changes if the £5million-rated summer signing finally proves his fitness. "We will be working hard this week on eliminating the simple individual mistakes which are costing us dearly," said the Blues boss, whose side have one of the worst defensive records in the league following Sunday's defeat. Yobo is not the only senior star in action for Andy Holden's team as Duncan Ferguson is expected to make his second reserve start in a week despite injuring his ankle on his comeback at Birmingham. Nick Chadwick, Steve Watson and Li Weifeng also get the chance to press their claims for a first-team recall. Former injury-plagued Everton defender Alec Cleland, meanwhile, hopes to relaunch his career back in the Scottish Premier League with Livingston. The former Glasgow Rangers full-back was released by the Blues at the end of last season after making only 44 appearances for the club following a succession of calf injuries. Cleland, Howard Kendall's last signing as Everton manager, has since been training with Steve McMahon's Blackpool alongside on-loan Blues duo Peter Clarke and Keith Southern but will seek a move to the SPL side next week. "I've got to do it to give myself the best chance of getting a new club and I'm grateful to Livingston for the opportunity," said the out-of-contract defender. "When I have played a couple of games I can still do a good job for someone."

Martland goal helps under-19s make point
Academy Football By Chris Wright, Daily Post
Sep 24 2002
EVERTON under-19s had to settle for a point, despite going ahead against Middlesbrough in the FA Premier Academy League on Saturday at Netherton. Colin Harvey's side, who were without regulars Alan Moogan, Michael Symes, Franklyn Colbeck and Craig Garside through injury, took the lead after just five minutes thanks to Damon Martland's first goal of the season. The 17-year-old winger from Wigan, pounced to fire the Blues into an early lead. But despite dominating large periods of the first half, they couldn't add to the opening strike. The visitors pegged them back on the hour from a free-kick and in the end Harvey's team were glad to hang on to a hard-earned point. Gavin Lynch almost made it two wins in a row but his header rebounded off the bar in the dying minutes. Coach Harvey said: "We got a good start and we didn't play too badly in the first half. "It was a good opportunist goal from Damon and we were playing quite well at that stage. But once they equalised they got on top and if anyone was going to win it then it would have been them. So in the end we were happy with a point. "We really needed a second goal when we were on top. We are not playing to our full potential at the moment - obviously you can tell that by the results. Confidence is a bit fragile, so we needed that second goal. "We have got injuries but that is neither here nor there. But it gives an opportunity to the younger lads and they have got to take it. "And on the whole, they are doing okay." Alan Harper's under-17s were without a match in the Academy League and will resume this Saturday at Manchester United.

Jblue members are in for a treat!
Sep 24 2002 Liverpool Echo
TODAY we announce the return of the Jblue column every Tuesday in your Echo. From next Tuesday, the Echo will carry news, competitions and prize draws exclusively open to Jblue members.
Last season was the first for Jblue - and it was a stunning success. Close on 14,000 young Evertonians around the country signed up for the only free junior supporters club in the Premier League.
Thousands of you took advantage of the discount vouchers for Everton home games, and thousands more enjoyed our exclusive Christmas party, and our Fans' Day in April. Jblue was also featured by the BBC and voted the "Best Value" junior supporters club in the country. It's also the fastest growing junior club in England, and we aim to make this season's benefits even better.
Everyone who has enrolled in Jblue should have received their new membership box, containing a new membership card, welcome letter from team manager David Moyes, and the six discount vouchers for this season. The first voucher is valid for the Fulham game this Saturday so, if you want a £5 discount on a match ticket, take your voucher and your new membership card down to the Everton Box Office. Vouchers can be used any time up to 3.00pm on the day of the game, subject to availability. Also don't forget our new competition: If you want a chance to win a new full Everton home kit, just send us a picture of yourself in an Everton strip. The most unusual picture we receive will win the full kit! Pictures will be returned.

Here we go again Dunc
Sep 24 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
DUNCAN FERGUSON'S latest comeback has lasted just 90 minutes, after an ankle knock ruled the injury plagued forward out of tonight's reserve match against Manchester City. And complicating Ferguson's bid to revive his interrupted Everton career is that there are no further reserve fixtures scheduled for a fortnight. The Scot made his first competitive appearance of the season in last week's reserve team match at Birmingham City. He got through the full game despite taking a kick on his ankle, but the joint was so swollen afterwards he has been unable to train properly again.
"It's disappointing," said manager David Moyes, "because we were just getting him back fit again.
"He did well to get through the match and finish it last week - and another day or so would probably have seen him okay. But the problem now is that we don't have another reserve match until October 10." The latest setback is typical of Ferguson's Goodison career, but there was brighter news for Moyes elsewhere. Striker Joe-Max Moore is ready for his first run-out of the season, after shaking off the knee injnury which curtailed his World Cup adventure with the USA. The Blues will field an experienced line-up at the Autoquest Stadium against Manchester City, including Steve Watson, Gary Naysmith, Joseph Yobo, Li Wei Feng, Tobias Linderoth, Lee Carsley, Scot Gemmill and Nick Chadwick. Moore is anxious to show manager David Moyes what he is capable of.
"I stretched the tendons during our game with Poland in the World Cup," he explained. " We'd already used three substitutes so I had to struggle through. "I was hoping that it would be ready for the new season, but it flared up again. It's a very frustrating time for me but I'm determined to play myself back into the first team here. "Obviously there's a lot of competition for places, but the first thing I need to do is get myself fit. "There was a rumour about Brian McBride coming over here in a swop deal involving myself, but I didn't want to leave Everton and I still don't. "I want to prove myself here, even though I've had my ups and downs since I arrived. "But when I'm playing for the team and scoring some goals, there's no better place to play in the world."

Blues' errors cost Moyes the victory
Sep 24 2002 By Kevin Ratcliffe, Liverpool Echo
I SPENT a fiver on Sunday afternoon hoping the Blues might cheer me up after Shrewsbury's drubbing the day before. The result did exactly the opposite, but before Blues fans start getting too anxious and despondent I saw plenty of reasons to be hopeful for the rest of the season.
We lost the game through silly individual errors. But generally I thought Everton were by far the better team. I couldn't remember a genuine chance Villa crafted for themselves. Both goals were avoidable, while other chances the home team had all came from mistakes by Everton defenders.
Playing three men in midfield takes away the protection for the backfour and places more responsibility on them --and I thought only one could really hold his head up and say he performed up to his potential. That was young Tony Hibbert. He was isolated a little at right-back with Samuel bearing down on him regularly, but he coped really well. It's also the first time this season I've really seen Wayne Rooney for any period of time, and he lived up to all the expectation. He certainly doesn't play like a 16-yearold. Physically he is years ahead of his time, but his football brain is also far in advance of his experience. Some of the passes he was threading through for Kevin Campbell were great ideas, but to the wrong man. That's the kind of service I would like to have seen him receiving. But he showed plenty to confirm he will be a vital asset for Everton for years to come.
The very least Everton deserved was a draw, but once again they were unlucky. The difference in the respective squad strengths, however, was shown up when Graham Taylor introduced Dion Dublin for the last 10 minutes, and still had £10m Juan Pablo Angel sitting alongside him.
Peter Crouch had been a handful, but Dion's extra strength and experience proved vital.
He cost Howard Kendall his job nine years ago, and he's been making subsequent Everton managers pay ever since. Everton's failure to pick up points from their last three away games places added pressure on the home matches. Next week's visit of Fulham now assumes more importance than it might previously have done. It's ridiculous to talk about must- win matches at this stage of the season, but three points next Saturday would go a long way towards easing any early season anxiety.
Goodbye, good buy
A YOUNG Evertonian is already looking like one of the shrewdest buys of the season so far, and even more frustratingly he was strongly linked with the Blues this summer. In the end Everton didn't have the money to bid for Coventry's David Thompson and he joined Blackburn instead. His performances in his first few games have simply confirmed what Everton have missed. Graeme Souness is already touting him for an England call-up, and he is still young enough to get even better.
I can understand Everton's reluctance to spend money they haven't got - something which previous regimes were guilty of - but it is still frustrating to see bright young players get away from the club like that.

Bids for Blues history
Sep 24 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
PRIZES belonging to the longest one-club servant in the history of football go under the hammer today. Christie's in London will auction former Everton goalkeeper Ted Sagar's 1938/39 title medal, some of his treasured England caps and medals awarded for representing the Football League against Scotland. There is also a medallion awarded by the Sporting Record National Ballot in 1949 to the Sportsman of the Year. The Blues goalkeeper spent 24 years and one month with the club between 1929 and 1953 --the longest spell any player has had professionally with one Football League club. A reserve price of £3,000 --5,000 has been placed on the title medal, with the first of the four England caps awarded to him in 1935 expected to raise between £400 and £600.
Sagar held Everton's appearance record until it was topped by Neville Southall in the 1990s. He died in 1986. Also on offer are lots of Everton and Liverpool programmes from the pre-First World War era, anticipated to raise between £400 and £600, plus a selection of jerseys swopped by former England international Gary Stevens. There are more than 30 lots submitted by the former Blues defender, including some from the 1986 World Cup Finals in Mexico.

Everton Res 1, Man City Res 0
Daily Post
Sep 25 2002
LEON OSMAN gave Everton the FA Premier Reserve League points over ten-man Manchester City with a goal in the last minute at the Halton Stadium last night. Osman, on as a 11th-minute substitute for the injured Steve Watson, cracked home from the edge of the box past City's substitute keeper Brian Murphy. Jospeh Yobo, was impressive alongside Li Weifeng in the centre of defence and pressed his claims to make his first-team debut. The visitor's had goalkeeper Carlo Nash sent off 12 minutes from the end after he handled the ball outside the area under pressure from Blues striker Nick Chadwick. Everton had the best chance of the first half. Joe-Max Moore set up Chadwick but Nash saved his low shot well. Chadwick had two more opportunities but Nash was equal to one effort and the other was off target. After Nash was sent-off Lee Carsley forced substitute keeper Murphy into a fine save from the resulting free-kick. And when Kevin McLeod was denied it looked like the Blues would have to settle for a point. But Osman struck a late winner for the Blues third victory in their last four matches.
EVERTON RES: Simonsen, Pilkington, Naysmith, Weifeng, Yobo, Linderoth, Watson ( Osman 11), Gemmill, Chadwick, Moore (McLeod 46), Carsley. Subs: Cole, O'Hanlon, Schumacher.
MAN CITY RES: Nash, Charvet, Tiatto, Loran, Mettomo, Bischoff, Whelan, Whitley, Vuoso (Murphy 78), Kerkar, Shuker. Subs: Day, McCarthy, Jordan, Browne
REFEREE: Mr M Matadar
ATT: 1,820.

Yobo stakes debut claim
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 25 2002
JOSEPH YOBO pressed his claims for an Everton debut against Fulham last night when he came through a 90-minute reserve team run-out against Manchester City. The Nigerian international (left) made his first appearance since taking a second knock to his troublesome ankle a fortnight ago as the Blues triumphed 1-0. Yobo was partnered at centreback by Chinese international Li Weifeng, and saw Leon Osman - an 11th-minute substitute for the injured Steve Watson - net a lastminute winner. And manager David Moyes, an interested spectator at Halton Stadium, is now considering handing 21-year-old Yobo his long-awaited Premiership debut this Saturday. Moyes will only consider players who are 100 per cent fit for first-team selection and must await any reaction from Yobo today before making a decision. But the alarming number of defensive errors that have cost Everton dear this season, and the extensive training put in by the former Marseille man over the past week, could put him in the frame. But while Yobo steps up his fitness bid Duncan Ferguson is facing yet another delay after missing his latest reserve test. The big striker was ruled out because of the ankle injury he received during last week's reserve clash with Birmingham. And with the Blues' next reserve game not until October 10, the injury-plagued Scot's bid to prove his career is not under threat remains on hold. Blues boss Moyes said: "It's disappointing because we were just getting him back fit. "He did well to get through the game last week and in another day or so he would probably have been okay."

Sky and ITV in £80m Champions League deal
Sep 25 2002 Liverpool Echo
REAL DEAL: There will be no escaping Champions League football next season
SKY and ITV have won the television rights to cover Champions League football for 2003-06 - and it means every match in the competition will be available live to viewers on British terrestrial or satellite digital television. Sky will mark their debut in covering the competition by broadcasting 14 Champions League matches live each week on their digital platform and ITV will show two on Tuesday evenings. There will also be highlights on ITV on Tuesdays and Sky on Wednesdays.
Vic Wakeling, managing director of Sky Sports, said: "The Champions League has broadened the horizons of football fans - far beyond the game's traditional and local base - and this is a dream offering. "Every game played in the competition will now be seen live in the UK." ITV - the current UK rights holder - will transmit two British live matches each Tuesday, one on ITV1 and the other on ITV2, with Sky able to show the other games live that evening. The satellite broadcaster will then have all Wednesday night games available on an exclusive basis. Both broadcasters will show the final. The British rights are the first to be announced by UEFA, and mean disappointment for the BBC who had attempted to negotiate a way around the deal which obliges broadcasters to show adverts. UEFA are delighted with the deal, which is worth £80m-a-year.

Osman scores last gasp winner
Sep 25 2002 Liverpool Echo
ANOTHER late Leon Osman goal gave Everton Reserves victory in the FA Premier Reserve league.
The talented midfielder scored in the dying minutes against Manchester United in the last home game and repeated the feat over their City rivals at the Halton Stadium. The game also saw Joseth Yobo's latest attempt to find full fitness and the Nigerian completed the full 90 minutes and must now be in contention for Saturdays first team fixture with Fulham. There was some bad news for David Moyes as he saw defender Steve Watson leave the action injured after just twelve minutes to be replaced by Osman. The Blues had the lions share of the little action in the first half and went close through Nick Chadwick and Joe Max Moore. Danny Tiatto tested Steve Simonsen for the visitors but City were largely dissapointing throughout the game. It was the second half and in particular the last 15 minutes before the game sprang to life after City goalkeeper Carlo Nash was sent off for handling the ball outside the area. A mix-up in the City defence allowed Nick Chadwick a run on goal and the City number one had no option but to make the save. Substitute keeper Brian Murphy came on and despite making a couple of quick saves was helpless to stop Osmans last minute strike from just outside the box. Chinese International Li Waifeng put in another good performance along with Scot Gemmill whilst American Joe Max Moore was replaced at half time by Kevin McLeod. The Victory was the Blues third of the season.
EVERTON: Simonsen, Pilkington, Naysmith, Feng, Yobo, Linderoth, Watson (Osman 12), Gemmill, Chadwick, Moore (McLeod 46), Carsley. Not Used: Cole, O'Hanlon, Schumacher.
MANCHESTER CITY: Nash, Charvet, Tiatto, Loran, Mettomo, Bischoff, Whelan, Whitley, Vuoso (Murphy 79), Kerkar, Shuker. Not Used: Day, McCarthy, Jordan, Browne.

Blues respond to Len Capeling
Sep 25 2002 icLiverpool & Daily Post
PLEASE, please, please, if you insist on keeping Len Capeling on the staff can you not get him to cover Tranmere or even Chester City? I am sick of his constant criticising of Everton Football Club.
Will he ever get over the club doing the right thing and removing Walter Smith? His "Lucky Everton have no excuse" story is both wide of the mark and antagonistic. Can I ask Len if he went to St Mary's the previous Wednesday? To criticise the team for being lucky after such an unfortunate defeat against Southampton is boring. We were told by Saints' fans not to worry, "what goes around comes around", luck evens itself out. It was a welcome change to see us play badly and win; when did that last happen? LEN Capeling is a top rate sports journalist. However, his report on Everton v Middlesbrough was absolutely unworthy of the standards of impartiality and fairness he should be aspiring to. Worst first half in 50 years? Really? I do not know who the non-supporter was who threw that comment over his shoulder, but it should never have gone into print as a fair assessment of the game. I saw plenty of very content people leaving the ground after the game. Why do you have to be so "over the top" in negativity, Mr Capeling?
Brian Flack, Chester
SURPRISE, surprise Mr Capeling has another go at EFC and for the third game running some unnamed source sitting nearby makes a comment he deems worthy of putting in print.
Against Birmingham it was someone having a go at Unsworth and now, at the Boro game, some 'other' unnamed source says it was the worst Blues display for 50 years. Do you ever hear any positive comments from people you sit with Mr Capeling? We were poor in the first half, but we did not deserve to be four or five down. The only player who may stay in that back five is Weir, as Wright, Yobo, Watson and Naysmith may very well be the first choice back five, although I would stick with Hibbert.
Steve Creron (via e-mail)
LEN CAPELING should not be reporting on Everton. His reports are so unfavourable.
I am not asking for a match report seen through rose-tinted spectacles, but he never gives Everton an ounce of credit. We beat Boro, so why use it as a springboard to attack Everton?
Robbie Greenslade, Liverpool

Nash sees red for Reserves
September 25, 2002
Manchester Evening News
BLUES' back-up keeper Carlo Nash will miss Manchester City's clash with Chelsea after being sent off during the Reserves defeat against Everton last night (Tuesday). Nash was adjudged to have handled the ball outside the box 12 minutes from time, and joins Danny Tiatto, who received a three match ban for a straight red against Blackburn, on the sidelines for the visit of the west London side on October 19. Following Nash's dismissal, City's second string were dealt another blow when Leon Osman struck the game's only goal the last minute. Blues boss Kevin Keegan can take a crumb of comfort from the game as Cameroonian international Lucien Mettomo came through the 90 minutes unscathed after being sidelined through injury.
City Res: Nash, Charvet, Tiatto, Loran, Mettomo, Bischoff, Whelan, Whitley, Vuosa, Kerkar, Shuker

Unlucky Watson in injury setback
Report By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 26 2002
STEVE WATSON'S miserable season is set to continue this weekend with hopes of a first-team recall curtailed by a groin strain. Everton's versatile defender jarred his groin only 10 minutes into Tuesday's reserve team win over Manchester City and is out of contention for Saturday's Premiership clash with Fulham. The blow comes at a bad time for the former Aston Villa and Newcastle star, who had hoped to use the Halton Stadium run-out to press claims for a first appearance of the season under David Moyes. Watson missed the start of the campaign with a hamstring strain and has since been overlooked by the Blues boss due mainly to the fine form of Tony Hibbert at right-back. With Niclas Alexandersson struggling, the 28-year-old had eyed a return against Jean Tigana's team - but now must wait until next Tuesday's Worthington Cup second round tie at Wrexham. Joseph Yobo, meanwhile, reported no reaction to his ankle problems after the reserve game and was at Bellefield yesterday for extra training as he stepped up his bid for a long-awaited Premiership bow this weekend. Both Alessandro Pistone and Duncan Ferguson are expected to return to first-team training following their respective hamstring and ankle problems. But neither are in contention to face the Londoners.

Recovered Yobo in line for debut
Sep 26 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
JOSEPH YOBO is ready to make his long-awaited Everton debut on Saturday.
But boss David Moyes has refused to reveal whether the Nigerian defender will come straight in from the start against Fulham. Yobo (left) played the full 90 minutes of Tuesday night's reserve match against Manchester City, and Moyes said: "Joseph played very well." But then the Blues boss added: "No-one is guaranteed a starting place here. Li Wei Feng also played well at Southampton.
"We want Joseph back. He was brought here to be involved, but we can only do it when he is fit and ready. "People will have to trust us on that decision. I never announce my team plans in the press anyway. But we will see how Joseph is in training today and tomorrow and make a decision then."
After leaking 11 goals in seven games so far, there seems little doubt that Moyes will introduce the pacy Yobo against Fulham. But speculation that it could be at right-back was dismissed this morning. "Tony Hibbert has played very well this season," said Moyes "that report is not right."
Once again Everton must do without Steve Watson, after he jarred his groin only 11 minutes into Tuesday night's reserve match. "Steve will be missing for a couple of weeks," said Moyes. "He wasn't fit enough to be involved on Sunday at Villa - and unfortunately lasted only 10 minutes on Tuesday."

Best of the best
By Ian Doyle, Daily Post
Sep 27 2002
WHAT A SITE: This is the land earmarked for a new academy and training complex CHIEF EXECUTIVE Michael Dunford has admitted the time was right for Everton to plan for a new training complex - and that such a move could safeguard the club's future. The Blues will today submit an application for a £9million training and Academy complex in Halewood, with the first balls due to be kicked at the new facility in July 2004. In unveiling the scheme, Everton have signalled their intention to move out of their current Academy site at Netherton and end more than 40 years of first-team training at Bellefield. "Our training ground at Everton when it was opened in the mid-60s was regarded as the best of its type in Europe," said Dunford. "It's a little bit tired now. The Youth Academy at Netherton is tired - it doesn't meet our aspirations and the guidelines provided by the FA Charter for Quality.
"We want to combine the two and have a superb site and attract the cream of the youngsters in this area to come to play for Everton. "That will give Everton a bright future and I'm certain that our supporters will applaud the move, as everyone else in the club does." At present the youth set-up is forced to work from two different sites around the city but the proposed new development will bring all aspects of the Everton playing staff under one roof. Dunford added: "For years now the Youth Academy and its staff has worked on a dual site, which isn't ideal and the board are convinced that the way forward is to put the full weight behind youth development. "We just feel that the Academy staff and the profile of the club will be enhanced by having a first-class facility and that we can continue to attract the best youngsters to Everton Football Club. "We've succeeded in the past with the likes of Michael Ball, Francis Jeffers, Danny Cadamarteri, Richard Dunne and Wayne Rooney. "We just hope that the next group of youngsters who come through to the club will be displaying their skills in a wonderful stadium on the waterfront and also at our Youth Academy."
Academy director Ray Hall said: "We've been in discussion now for some time and we are delighted as far as the Academy goes, to have the chance for our facilities to be brought up to the standard and maybe even beyond that of our rivals. "All of our staff have had an input into the final design and needless to say it will be a state-of-the-art facility that will be as good as any around."

Blues eye £9m move
By Ian Doyle, Daily Post
Sep 27 2002
DAVID MOYES has played another major part in shaping Everton's future after the Blues unveiled plans to move into a multi-million pound training complex on the outskirts of Liverpool.
The Blues will today submit an application for a £9million academy in Halewood, which will house both the first team and youth players. It signals the end of over 40 years of training at their current training ground at Bellefield in West Derby, with the club looking to sell this residential land and the current eight-acre academy site in Netherton to help fund the new facility. Knowsley Borough Council will consider the venture when they meet in November and, if successful, the club expect work to begin in spring with the opening date in time for pre-season training in July 2004.
Blues boss Moyes has been instrumental in ensuring the first-team squad also feel the benefits of the ambitious new scheme, which, along with the proposed 55,000-seater Kings Dock arena, would propel Everton back to the forefront of European football in terms of facilities. Planning discussions over the new site have taken place throughout the year, and it is believed that had Walter Smith still been in charge then the first team would have continued to train at Bellefield. However, Moyes has been insistent that all the players should be based at the same site. "It will be one of the best facilities of its type in the country," said Blues chief executive Michael Dunford. "We hope to start work on it in the next 12 months, but it's all subject to planning permission. "The application goes in on Friday, the outcome we hope will be successful - but you can't take anything for granted, as clubs like Derby and Sunderland have experienced problems with Greenfield sites." The 55-acre site, off Higher Road and Finch Lane in Halewood, is owned by Cheshire County Council and is occupied by a tenant farmer, with whom successful talks concerning compensation have already taken place. Everton's Head of Corporate Affairs, Ian Ross, revealed: "We would very much liked to have built this Academy within the Liverpool City boundary but, because of the scale of the project, this sadly just was not possible. "We worked very closely with Liverpool City Council in attempting to isolate a suitable site in Liverpool itself. We are very grateful for the help they afforded us. "The Everton Board of Directors always maintained that once the preparatory work for the proposed move to the Kings Waterfront site had been completed, they would address the question of a new, state-of-the-art Academy." The new complex will boast a new pavilion with indoor gym and a fenced floodlit synthetic grass pitch, 10 full-size football pitches, two mini pitches and two specific goalkeeping areas. Although the first team will be based at Halewood, the majority of the facility will be used by the Blues Academy. "Any major football club's future undoubtedly lies at the feet of its youngsters and by committing ourselves to this ambitious project, Everton has acknowledged as much," added Ross. "The new Academy will be a top class facility."

Depleted Blues need steel in Sheffield
Academy By Chris Wright, Daily Post
Sep 27 2002
DESPITE missing four key players Everton under-19s look to build on their last two unbeaten matches at Sheffield Wednesday tomorrow (kick-off 12noon). Striker Michael Symes (groin), midfielder Alan Moogan (eye), utility player Craig Garside (knee ligaments) and full-back Franklyn Colbeck all missed last week's draw at home to Middlesbrough and all are again likely to be missing again for tomorrow's visit to Sheffield. After three straight defeats to start their FA Premier Academy League campaign Colin Harvey's side have picked up a win and a draw to give them a platform to build on. And while they are not yet playing the type of football that saw them reach the FA Youth Cup final last year, they are slowly returning to form. Alan Moogan should be fit by the start of October and Michael Symes is continuing to have problems with a niggling groin strain. Craig Garside will be out for at least two more weeks. Alan Harper's under-17s resume their Academy League campaign with a tough assignment at Manchester United ( kickoff 11am). After two wins and a draw the Blues lost their unbeaten run two weeks ago against Birmingham City, so they will be keen to get back to winning ways. Academy director Ray Hall said: "I don't think either of our sides have played as well as we can do in any of the games so far this season, so there is still more to come from them. "But it is a gradual progression and hopefully that will happen as the season progresses. "And we are hoping that some of the U19s can get more reserve games, some of the U17s can get into Colin's U19s and then that clears the way for some of the better schoolboys to come up and play in what is their first league environment at U17 level. "It is down to the lads, and if they play well enough it is then down to the coaches who will pick them." Hall added: "The injuries gave the chance for a few of the younger lads to play. At the end of the match we only had four U19 players on the pitch, the rest were U18 or U17 players. And they all seemed to do well."

Dublin discovers flaws
Fanscene By Mark O'Brien, Daily Post
Sep 27 2002
WHO next, Ian Wright? Maybe even Ian Rush? And where's Efan Ekoku these days?
The Everton fans at Villa Park may as well have headed for the exits the minute Neon Dion Dublin took the field on Sunday. We'd already had Les Ferdinand scoring with his only touch of the season so Dublin's scrambled effort was about as surprising as the cancellation of Michael Barrymore's book. David Moyes, who must be near the end of his tether at times, tried to point out the positives - mainly the character that the players showed to get back on level terms - but the plain truth is that if you concede three goals, irrespective of their timing, you aren't going to come away with much.
Much has been made of the form of the central defenders, and it's undeniable that in more than one game this season they've looked dreadful. However, just as the responsibility for creating and scoring goals doesn't lie solely with the forwards, preventing the opposition from finding the net isn't the sole preserve of the defence. The rest of the team, particularly the midfield, have to play their part in closing down the opposition, and at Villa Park that patently was not happening.
Wayne Rooney was working back, and Mark Pembridge is never anything less than one hundred per cent committed, but Thomas Gravesen, Li Tie and substitute Niclas Alexandersson let the side down badly when the hosts turned up the pressure. How does the manager change it though? Anyone who went to the Halton Stadium on Tuesday night could see that he hardly has an embarrassment of riches to choose from. Duncan Ferguson was missing with a sprained eyelash but Joseph 'Shergar' Yobo played and didn't do a lot wrong. Unfortunately the visitors didn't show hardly anything in attack so it was impossible to judge what his defensive capabilities are. A dramatic home win against Fulham last season marked the arrival of David Moyes. We've now played almost a quarter of this new campaign and we've yet to really impress for a whole 90 minutes. If we're to get on track and stay clear of the relegation places then a repeat of the attitude and determination that saw us beat Jean Tigana's team last time out is what is called for tomorrow. Pressure mounts quickly in football - it's down to the players to relieve it by taking the three points.

Li Tie set for Inamoto test
By Ian Doyle, Daily Post
Sep 27 2002
EVERTON midfielder Li Tie has revealed he is relishing the prospect of going head-to-head with fellow Asian star Junichi Inamoto tomorrow. The duo are poised to be in opposition in midfield when the Blues entertain Fulham, a fixture which last season marked the start of David Moyes' Everton reign. And the eyes of many football followers in the Far East will be trained on Goodison Park, as two of the region's brightest stars do battle. Li Tie has been quietly impressive in his outings for the Blues after surprising many by settling quickly into the pace of the Premiership following his one-year loan move to England. But it is Inamoto who has made the greater impact, following up his impressive displays in the World Cup for Japan with a flurry of goals for Jean Tigana's side. And Li Tie has admitted to being impressed by the former Arsenal man.
"The first time I played against Inamoto was during the Asian Cup in Lebanon two years ago," revealed Li Tie. "He was playing in defensive midfield as well, and I remember China were instructed to watch over him. "From what I've seen of him at the World Cup, he is now playing slightly further upfield and he has really excelled at Fulham." Boss Moyes is ready to hand Joseph Yobo his Everton debut tomorrow afternoon - although it may come from the substitutes' bench. The Nigerian international played the full 90 minutes of Tuesday night's reserve team game against Manchester City, and has since completed extra training in a bid to improve his fitness. But it may not be enough for Yobo to take his place in the starting line-up tomorrow. "Joseph played very well for the reserves," said Moyes. "But no-one is guaranteed a starting place here. Li Weifeng also played well at Southampton. "We want Joseph back. He was brought here to be involved but we can only do it when he is fit and ready. "People will have to trust us on that decision.We will see how Joseph is in training and will make a decision."
Moyes also confirmed that Steve Watson, who went off after 11 minutes in the reserves' 1-0 win with an injury to his groin, will be facing another spell on the sidelines as a result.
* EVERTON yesterday announced Australian company HealthyCo International Group is to become its nutritional partner.

Reidy needs a few wins
Sep 27 2002 By Howard Kendall, Liverpool Echo
THERE is a lot of pressure on Peter Reid.
The Sunderland chairman Bob Murray gave him the money and everyone was calling out for him to spend it. Sometimes a manager is caught in a situation where he goes out and spends for the sake of it because of the pressure. The fans will now be looking at the £10m he has spent on Tore Andre Flo and Marcus Stewart. Peter will be very disappointed at the derby defeat against Newcastle last weekend, but the fans were probably mystified why he brought on Stewart only for the last few minutes while Niall Quinn came off the bench much earlier. That would have only fuelled their concern about how the club's money has been spent. There are certain times when a manager knows that a signing is possibly his last chance and if it does not pay off they he can expect the worst. I certainly hope for Peter's sake that Sunderland's record signing Flo improves dramatically. Reidy came out and criticised some of his players in public for a lack of desire after that derby.
Sometimes a manager comes in for flak himself for doing that, but you cannot always protect your players. The supporters are no mugs and they watch the performances too. If Peter had said after the derby game that his players were unlucky to lose, the fans would have been left thinking he knows nothing about the game of football. In the early 80s I was regularly reading about my future at Everton. It was a case of not if I should have been sacked, but when. If you remember the League Cup game against Oxford in 1984 when Adrian Heath grabbed a late equaliser, the player who closed down and harried Kevin Brock to create that chance was Peter Reid. Staying in that cup helped me and we went on to greater things. If we had lost against Oxford, who knows what would have happened. Maybe Peter will look back to his playing days under me and realise that all you need is a few results to get people back on your side. I CAN understand the thinking behind the proposed move away from Bellefield to a new training ground in Halewood. With the number of teams at various levels at the club now, two pitches are not enough. I recently saw Arsenal's training facilities and they have more than a dozen magnificent pitches. Bellefield was ahead of its time when it was opened in 1966. It boasted a huge indoor area which meant you were never without training facilities even in the worst weather. As a player, the first time you saw the facilities, they were mouthwatering. To have the youth academy alongside the training ground in Halewood would make a lot of sense. The manager can keep a closer eye on the youngsters as well as the senior players.
Oh no, it's Dion again THERE are certain players that make Evertonians cringe when they come off the bench against us. Their appearance as a substitute seems to have everyone groaning "oh no".
There have been a lot of them who seem to look forward to playing against Everton.
Super Sub Dave Fairclough always looked like scoring against us and I recall Ronnie Rosenthal scoring for Liverpool in a derby in 1993. Ian Rush did it for Newcastle in a cup tie and in the first league game of this season we all said "Oh no" when Les Ferdinand came on and scored for Spurs.
And then, of course, it happened again last weekend when Dion Dublin got off the bench and scored the winner.

Oh, I do like to be beside the seaside
Sep 27 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
WITH Everton anxiously waiting on a solid, reliable centre-half to stem the flood of goals conceded this season, one that got away is quietly building a growing reputation for himself away from Goodison Park. Peter Clarke was allowed to join Steve McMahon's Blackpool revival on-loan until Christmas, and McMahon admits he owes a lot to David Moyes for the gesture. Clarke scored a late matchwinner against Port Vale last weekend, the third time he has netted this season. But it is his qualities at the heart of the Second Division side's defence which have most pleased McMahon. "You make enquiries for lots of players and very few of them come to anything," he said "but I was delighted when David Moyes agreed to let both Peter and Keith Southern come here. "Peter played first team football last season so I was always confident he could come in and do well here. But it's unfair on Keith to single out Peter. "Keith's done really well, too, and I'd love to make both deals permanent - if I could afford them! - but fortunately I don't have to worry about that until the loan period ends at Christmas. "Peter has settled in like a duck to water and we have been really pleased with him so far." Clarke has endured a roller-coaster start to the season. He was initially rocked to be told he could leave Goodison, then lifted when he was called up into David Platt's England Under-21 squad for a friendly match against Yugoslavia. But he has revelled in regular first team football at Bloomfield Road, in his favoured position of central defence. "I would like to stay," he said this week "but it may not be down to me. "At the minute I am happy and enjoying my football, loving being around the place. The atmosphere is great and I would like to stay until the end of the season, play the whole campaign and hope that it is a successful campaign. "I know Blackpool is a Second Diviion club but players here are definitely some of the best in the League and could play at a higher level, I have no doubt about that. "I feel Blackpool have aspirations far higher than the Second and I want to be part of this club and be in contention for a place in Division One." Much will depend on the price tag Everton attach to the player if they do decide to let him leave permanently. The Blues' refusal to let Clarke be cup-tied in this season's Worthington Cup suggests he may still have some part to play at Goodison. But for now he is enjoying his time at the seaside.

Moyes: This is no milestone
Sep 27 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
IN THE BEGINNING: David Moyes congratulates his players after beating Fulham in his first match in charge last March EVERTON play their 400th Premiership match tomorrow, with David Moyes hoping to celebrate with the same sort of result he enjoyed in his first. Fulham are the visitors to Goodison Park, six months on from when they provided the opposition for Moyes' famous first match in charge of the Blues. Everton enjoyed a thrilling 2-1 win that afternoon, scoring after only 29 seconds, but Moyes does not view the Londoners' return as a milestone. "Strangely enough I don't see it that way," he explained. "I've come up against Fulham quite a bit in the past. When they were promoted Preston were the only team to win at Craven Cottage, and we also took a point off them at Deepdale. "We also had the game at Goodison last season, so I hope that my own record against them personally can continue tomorrow." Moyes watched Fulham hold Chelsea on Monday night and added: "They are on a good run at present and you only have to look at their squad and the players who can't get into their team to see how good they are. "They have an unbelievable squad of players and people should not be surprised at how well they have done this season. Possibly they just needed that one season in the Premiership to adjust." Due to their Inter-Toto Cup involvement, Fulham have already played 15 matches this season. Their only Premiership defeat to date came at West Bromwich Albion. But Moyes could also dwell on some impressive statistics of his own. The recent Opta Index showed that Everton have produced more crosses and won more corner kicks this season than any other team in the Premiership. "That shows we are getting into the last third of the field regularly," explained Moyes. "What we have to do is make sure things are right everywhere else." The Blues' boss would not give any clues to his team line-up for tomorrow, but hinted that Duncan Ferguson could be a surprise inclusion on the substitutes' bench.
"It's a possibility," he said. "His ankle is still sore but if he can shake that off it's something we may consider. His general fitness is down and his match fitness is short, but if his ankle recovers we could use him." Tobias Linderoth went home from training yesterday feeling ill. Fulham could recall Irish full-back Steve Finnan.

Moyes set to ring changes in defence
Sep 27 2002 Liverpool Echo
A FEW new faces could be in the Everton line-up for tomorrow's visit of Fulham to Goodison Park --with the home defence in the spotlight. Moyes watched the midweek reserve win over Manchester City which saw two World Cup stars, Nigerian Joseph Yobo and China's Li Weifeng (left), as a new-look central defence. The bedrock of Everton over the recent seasons has been the partnership of David Weir and Alan Stubbs. When Li Weifeng arrived at the club in the summer Moyes made a point of saying the defender would have to wait for his chance because of the quality and experience in front of him in the pecking order. But after clawing their way back from 2-0 down at Aston Villa on Sunday, only to lose 3-2, it was the defence which took the brunt of Moyes ' annoyance. The former Preston boss has been frustrated in his desire to include Yobo so far because of a string of minor injuries which have afflicted the Nigerian, who faced England in the Far East during the summer. But Yobo is over his injuries now, and Moyes will judge if the player is match fit. Li Weifeng has made just one appearance so far, in an injury-ravaged side at Southampton which also missed the suspended Stubbs. Everton were unfortunate to lose at St Mary's, a disputed penalty costing them after an outstanding display by the makeshift defence with Li Weifeng playing well alongside Weir. Gary Naysmith also came through the reserve game without a problem after his groin injury and could be recalled in place of Dave Unsworth. Steve Watson damaged his groin in the midweek reserve game, so his comeback will be delayed. Duncan Ferguson, out this week with an ankle knock, is back in training while American striker Joe-Max Moore has also now played his first match since the World Cup. Moyes is now in his sixth month as Everton boss and still claiming: "It's all very new to me - I still feel like the new boy." But he will not allow sentiment to stand in the way of change as he said: "We have been working hard to eliminate the simple individual mistakes which are costing us dearly."

Moyes set to ring changes in defence
Sep 27 2002 Liverpool Echo
A FEW new faces could be in the Everton line-up for tomorrow's visit of Fulham to Goodison Park --with the home defence in the spotlight. Moyes watched the midweek reserve win over Manchester City which saw two World Cup stars, Nigerian Joseph Yobo and China's Li Weifeng (left), as a new-look central defence. The bedrock of Everton over the recent seasons has been the partnership of David Weir and Alan Stubbs. When Li Weifeng arrived at the club in the summer Moyes made a point of saying the defender would have to wait for his chance because of the quality and experience in front of him in the pecking order. But after clawing their way back from 2-0 down at Aston Villa on Sunday, only to lose 3-2, it was the defence which took the brunt of Moyes ' annoyance. The former Preston boss has been frustrated in his desire to include Yobo so far because of a string of minor injuries which have afflicted the Nigerian, who faced England in the Far East during the summer. But Yobo is over his injuries now, and Moyes will judge if the player is match fit. Li Weifeng has made just one appearance so far, in an injury-ravaged side at Southampton which also missed the suspended Stubbs. Everton were unfortunate to lose at St Mary's, a disputed penalty costing them after an outstanding display by the makeshift defence with Li Weifeng playing well alongside Weir. Gary Naysmith also came through the reserve game without a problem after his groin injury and could be recalled in place of Dave Unsworth. Steve Watson damaged his groin in the midweek reserve game, so his comeback will be delayed. Duncan Ferguson, out this week with an ankle knock, is back in training while American striker Joe-Max Moore has also now played his first match since the World Cup. Moyes is now in his sixth month as Everton boss and still claiming: "It's all very new to me - I still feel like the new boy." But he will not allow sentiment to stand in the way of change as he said: "We have been working hard to eliminate the simple individual mistakes which are costing us dearly."

Cottagers have to beat Blues - keeper
Sep 27 2002 Liverpool Echo
SUCCESS- STARVED Edwin van der Sar has told his Fulham teammates to forget their European dreams if they cannot beat Everton at Goodison Park tomorrow. The giant Dutch goalkeeper, who earned his side a point with two topdraw saves in Monday's 0-0 draw with Chelsea, savoured continental success with Ajax and Juventus. But last season - the first year of his four-year deal with the Cottagers --the 31-year-old found himself embroiled in a relegation struggle. This campaign has been a different story, with Jean Tigana's men breezing through the Intertoto Cup, bagging a 1-0 lead from their UEFA Cup first round, first leg tie against Hajduk Split - and racing up to sixth in the Premiership table. However, van der Sar believes there is no chance of securing a high enough league finish to guarantee European football unless Fulham can dispatch teams like Everton.
He said: "We've had a good start and have to continue. And these sort of games are the vital games for us. If we want to do something, we have to win these games. "A 0-0 draw with Chelsea wasn't bad - but we're going for a win at Everton. And keeping a clean sheet on Monday helped confidence for tomorrow."

Yobo in line for Blues debut
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 28 2002
DAVID MOYES wants an end to the defensive errors that are undermining Everton's season as he prepares to hand Joseph Yobo his Premiership debut today. The Blues boss marks six months in charge at Goodison Park with the return of Fulham, the side beaten 2-1 in the Scot's first game at the helm. And as he called on his team to stamp out the mistakes, Moyes insisted Everton confidence remains high despite the dropped points. "There has been progress since the first Fulham game," reflected Moyes. "Whether it's one or a hundred per cent I can't say but there has been progress all round. "We're getting into the opposition half more often and we want to be a positive side and win games. "When I first arrived we had to adopt a win-or-bust approach in the fight to avoid relegation. That's not the case this season but we still would have liked to have defended better and conceded less than we have done. "The problem is it has not always been a collective defensive problem that you can sort out on the training ground, it is individual errors that have cost us." Moyes continued: "I feel our performances have deserved better. In all our games we've had a chance of winning. There have also been poor periods in those games as well but that will happen to us at the moment. "The players aren't down because they know they have been playing well. It would be a problem if they had felt they'd been playing badly. We should have more points on the board but our performances are improving." Everton are without Steve Watson (groin) and Alessandro Pistone (hamstring) this afternoon, but after being sidelined for two months with ankle problems Yobo should finally make his Blues bow against Jean Tigana's team.
"I'm delighted to have Joseph available," said the Blues boss. "He's got a few reserve team games under his belt and he's fit." Moyes, meanwhile, hopes the days of Everton selling off their best young players will end with the development of the club's proposed £9million training and youth academy complex. Everton submitted planning proposals yesterday to back the manager's plan to usher Everton into a brave new world with a vibrant youth policy. And with 16-year-old Wayne Rooney leading the way, Moyes wants to see a production line of young talent, not just the occasional star. He insists the selling policy of the past must end. "Everton in the past have produced good young players. The sad part is that we have let a lot of them go, either because they have wanted to leave or the club has sold them to balance the books," said Moyes. "When I arrived here six months ago I made it clear that the policy of youth cannot be a short-term thing if we want to move things on." At the moment Everton's youth set-up operates in Netherton while the first team train at the club's Bellefield base in West Derby. And Moyes said: "Bellefield is a great place, but we miss not having the younger players around us, and if the club can push this through and we can have the youngsters and the first team training together at the same place it will help produce more youngsters like Rooney. "We feel the way forward is youth. Not all clubs can compete financially with the bigger clubs and everyone wants to produce a batch of young players coming through their club - just like the one that has made Manchester United what they are today."

Radzinski:Last season was just an embarrassment
Andy Hunter Interview, Daily Post
Sep 28 2002
SECOND season syndrome is an affliction many foreign players struggle to overcome. I n Tomasz Radzinski's case it is the chance to right the wrongs of his first. Spurred on by the " embarrassment" of the six-goal tally he achieved in his debut season in England, when a catalogue of injury denied him the time to adjust to English football, the Everton striker is enjoying a new lease of life this season. Chances are still being created out of nothing and missed, and even manager David Moyes admits Radzinski's finishing is a concern, but through adversity comes strength and the Canadian international is now producing the all-round form that persuaded Walter Smith to splash £4.5million on the 28-year-old last summer. Ever-present this season despite formation changes and the emergence of you-know-how, Radzinski has justified Moyes' faith in him by producing the most consistent spell of his Everton career. His two-goal haul thus far should be higher but his all-round contribution and menace has improved drastically this term; a hand in three other valuable strikes - Mark Pembridge's against Spurs plus Kevin Campbell's versus Sunderland and Middlesbrough - proving there is much more to his game. "I have two goals so far and created a few others, and while it isn't perfect it is better than last season," said the Blues striker, who aims to increase that total at Fulham's expense this afternoon. "I feel much happier on the pitch now. When that is the case the goals are going to come. "We are playing a different system to last season and although it takes some adjusting to, I think it is a good way of playing. I'm quite happy with the way things are going even if we are not getting the results we deserve. "Once you get used to a system with three strikers I think it's good and teams have problems coping with fast players like myself and Wayne on the flanks with Kevin in the middle. "There is no room for error in the team at the moment. If you have two bad games then you are out of the side because there are so many players waiting to take your place. "It keeps you on your toes and you have to give your best otherwise you are going to be on the bench. "We've got Duncan and Chaddy to come back as well so it's a good situation to have."
Everton's threat has been clear from day one this season when Moyes deployed a three-man attack to take on Tottenham. And Radzinksi admits: "The combination with Kevin up front is working well and with Wayne coming in you can see that defences are worried about us. "I still have to see his passport to believe he's only 16, not only in terms of his football but his physique and technique as well. I've never come across a player like that at that age before. "Sometimes I like to just stop and watch him in training, dribbling past three or four players. It's hard to believe he's only 16."
The pressure on Rooney to answer Everton's prayers has been eased somewhat by Radzinski's form.
His manager Moyes agrees. "Tomasz has done really well for us this season. He's looked sharp from the start," said the Scot. "He said to me in pre-season that he felt much fitter and sharper and he's looked it. "His pace has caused teams lots of problems and, though his finishing is a concern and can still be better, he has worked very hard in training at improving it. "Pace is always a threat. He showed it several times last season but lacked the finish at the end, but you can tell from his body language that he's more comfortable with himself now. "Someone told me he didn't do so well or score many in his first season at Anderlecht but was excellent in his second season when he started to make his name. "Maybe he needs to settle down before he shows his best and he is certainly playing well at the moment." Fears of another hard slog of a season for Everton increased following the defeat at Aston Villa last Sunday, which left the Blues just three points above second-from-bottom Sunderland ahead of their first tough set of fixtures of the campaign. But Radzinski is adamant both his and the team's fortune will change. "Getting six goals last season was embarrassing," he states. "By any standards that is low, regardless of whether you have missed a lot of games through injury. When people look back on that record in years to come it won't look good.
"I never put a target on how many goals I will score but I definitely want to better that total.
"My first season in England wasn't the most enjoyable. Everything that could go wrong did go wrong, but hopefully I've learned everything from that season and I feel I can cope much better with the demands of the Premiership. taying clear of injury is so important in that respect. Up until now I have missed only half a training session and touch wood I hope that continues. "Usually the second season for a foreign player is a more difficult one but I hope it will be a lot easier for me. "I learned absolutely everything last season and I feel much more confident now. For me it will be a better season than it was last time." That is no idle boast from the little striker. After the struggle to move to Goodison from Anderlecht last summer and the subsequent injury problems, he is fully aware of the difficulties the club has faced. But he insists: "When you are sidelined with injury a lot of things go through your mind but never did I feel I made a bad decision coming here. "I just thought that when the injuries were over everything would be good for me and they are. "There is nowhere else I would rather be than Everton right now. "There were times last season when it was difficult to cope but right now things are much better and I want to prove something to people. "If we do stay injury-free and continue playing the way we have been I don't see any problems getting into the top 10 because we have a really good team. I think that's a realistic target. "At times last season we didn't know how to react to certain situations but now every single situation and possibility is discussed and by the end of the week everyone knows the job they have to do, what the opposing team's strengths are and how to beat them. "I have a good feeling for the future here."

Raddy to makeup forlast season
Sep 28 2002 Liverpool Echo
EVERTON striker Tomasz Radzinski is convinced his decision to join the Goodison club was the right one. Now the 28-year-old is on a mission to make up for lost time. The naturalised Canadian didn't enjoy the most productive of first seasons at the club after joining for £4.5m from Anderlecht last summer as a replacement for Francis Jeffers. But his form this season has been one of the positive in a mixed start for the Blues, who were desperate for points against Fulham at Goodison this afternoon. "Everything that could go wrong did go wrong," reflected Radzinski. "I had injury problems, but by any standards it was an embarrassment. "I only got six goals, and even though I was injured, that was still far too low a figure. "I have scored twice this season and while it isn't perfect I feel much happier. I learnt a lot last year and feel I can cope with the demands of the Premiership. "Despite everything that happened last season I still feel I made the right decision to join Everton. Now I want to prove it."

Blue foundation night of heroes
Sep 28 2002 By David Prentics, Liverpool Echo
After four hugely successful years accepting donations to aid some of Everton's less fortunate former heroes, the club's registered charity is now hoping to boost its coffers through a series of dinners.
The first of these will take place on Saturday, November 23 at St George's Hall, when Blueblood hosts David Unsworth's Testimonial Dinner. "David has kindly offered to make a donation to the Foundation in exchange for us organising the event," explained Blueblood Chairman Laurence Lee.
"But we are also planning to host a dinner of our own next year when all of the money raised will boost our coffers. It will be the first time we have done something like this and we will announce details in due course." The Foundation has gone from strength to strength since its formation in 1998. A registered charity, independent of Everton Football Club but with official backing from the club, Blueblood Patron Bill Kenwright said at the launch: "I don't like to think of this as charity. Better words would be celebration, gratitude and repayment for the seasons of pleasure these players have given us." Since then beneficiaries have been numerous - and many would be embarrassed at their plight being publicised. But others willing to make public the help Blueblood has given them include Gordon West, proud owner of a new knee joint which has helped transform his life; his championship winning teammate Sandy Brown, who has received respite care paid for by the Foundation; Gordon Watson, a team-mate of Dixie Dean's whose hip replacement operation enabled him to fulfil a dream of walking unaided into a Former Players' dinner, with the FA Cup on his shoulder! and Fred Pickering, who can now walk pain-free once again following a foot operation.
In its early years the Foundation's only source of income was donations from supporters' associations e.g. the rousing Hall of Fame Gala dinners at the Adelphi Hotel and Bluekipper Website awards. But now Blueblood hosts a match at Goodison Park every other year - Alex Young was a joint beneficiary last year - has annual Foundation days and receives hundreds of generous donations from Everton supporters every season. "We were very grateful for the support we were given by the organisers of those events in our early years," said Mr Lee, "but now we receive donations from many different avenues. "We hope this continues because every single penny we receive is used to benefit former players."

Everton 2, Fulham 0 (D,Post)
Sep 30 2002 Andy Hunter Reports From Goodison Park, Daily Post
DAVID MOYES became the patron saint of lost Everton causes on the back of a thrilling win over Fulham. Six months on and against those same feisty opponents, his players showed they have adopted that mantle too. The proof didn't come in the result, the transformation that beat Middlesbrough in the previous home game never needed as the Blues blitzed Fulham inside 23 seconds at the end of the first half and coasted home with arguably their most consistent 90-minute display of the season. No, it was literally the lost causes Everton were willing to chase and win all afternoon that provided evidence of the team's spirit and Moyes' impact at Goodison Park.
Since taking control in March, the Everton manager has been unable to make the wholesale changes that usually accompany upheaval at the top. Compared to Harrods-backed Jean Tigana, the Scot shops at Aldi, yet his philosophy of attacking football allied to an intense work ethic has clearly been imprinted on that same first-team squad. The signs were there in the comebacks against Spurs, Birmingham, Boro and briefly Aston Villa. One 60-second spell on Saturday, however, summed up Moyes' approach and why Everton eased to three valuable points. Fulham were looking to launch a much-needed attack when Tomasz Radzinski arrived out of nowhere to charge down Pierre Wome on the Bullens Road flank. Before the Cameroon international could reclaim the loose ball Thomas Gravesen and Mark Pembridge had pounced, eventually winning a free-kick that sailed just wide of Edwin van der Sar's goal. When the goal-kick was taken short to defender Zat Knight, Kevin Campbell bust a gut to seize back possession, setting up the Dane for a blistering effort parried by the Dutchman. No goals, no clear reward, but the intent was clear. The level of commitment drew roars of approval from the home stands and drew the sting from a Fulham side that could have gone third in the Premiership with victory at Goodison. Aside from the opening ten minutes, that was never going to happen. Everton were simply too strong, too hungry and too forceful for the Londoners, who were ultimately thankful only for the margin of their defeat. After the villainy of their Villa upset this was a game the Blues desperately needed to win ahead of a set of fixtures that will test Everton's new resolve to the core. At least they will take on Manchester United and Arsenal with confidence restored after a display rich in promise that got the reward so often deserved but not delivered this season. As stated, Moyes has not been able to usher in his new era with many new faces but the few who have arrived began to show exactly why this weekend. Richard Wright looked far more assured and confident in goal, his fourth-minute block to stop Sylvain Legwinski rounding off a flowing Fulham move crucial as the Blues made an awkward start. David Unsworth (right) completed the clear-up by hacking Barry Hayles' follow-up off the line, part of a balanced, resilient defence that finally welcomed Joseph Yobo into its heart. He was worth the wait.
One sliced clearance apart, the Nigerian international oozed quality, coasting through his debut in English football as if it was his, not Everton's, 400th Premiership game. A last-ditch tackle on Steve Marlet and taking a high ball down on his chest under pressure before releasing a firsttime 40-yard pass showed why Moyes has been raving about the centre-half since striking that imaginative deal with Marseille. His new partner David Weir agrees. "Joseph did extremely well," said the Scot. "He showed a lot of strength, ability and confidence. "It is always difficult on your debut but it didn't seem that way for him, he showed a lot of attributes. That's nothing against Alan Stubbs, who I think has played well this season, but it's good for us to have that competition." It was both the Everton new and old who flourished against Fulham though, and once the Blues got to grips with the visitors' threat from the flanks and Campbell nodded home they never looked back. With Lee Carsley given his first start of the season and the Everton middle comprising of four central midfielders, the emphasis was always on perspiration to nullify Tigana's team's inspiration and Moyes' tactical ploy worked to perfection. Very slowly but surely the Blues settled into command, although the first half was drifting aimlessly towards its close before the home side exploded into life. Carsley, chasing another lost cause having nearly profited when he slid into van der Sar and hooked the rebound into the side-netting, collided with Wome and won a free-kick. Sensing another set-piece success, Campbell read Pembridge's wicked delivery superbly, flicking a header back and in off the far post in the 44th minute for his fifth of the season. Before Fulham could respond, Everton had the game won thanks to a wonderful move the length of the pitch. Unsworth tidied up a visiting attack before finding Pembridge, whose instinctive firsttime pass to Radzinski sent the Canadian scurrying into the danger zone. The striker cut inside and rolled the ball invitingly for Gravesen, and memories of his red card in the same fixture last season were vanquished when a thumping low drive flew past van der Sar's right hand. Fulham had no answer to Everton's relentless attacking after the break, the two Radzinski efforts that hit either post would have given the scoreline a more accurate look as the only disruption they caused was to home discipline. On Friday, Hayles claimed he was a changed man from the striker who stamped on Weir last December and then scandalously got off scot-free with the charge in the summer. Clearly it was a lie, as he clattered into the Blues defender and still got away without punishment from the referee. Tigana wasn't fooled though, and substituted Hayles within seconds. In injury time the bad blood that still exists from the Craven Cottage bust-up came to the surface after Andy Melville scythed down Campbell then accused him of feigning injury.
Everton's leading scorer erupted in fury, referee Steve Dunn's attempt to let the players cool down before intervening having the opposite effect as tempers flared three times and Van der Sar made an idiot of himself when he collapsed in an attempt to have Weir sent off. But nothing could disrupt the Blues' dominance or spoil Moyes' six-month anniversary.
Suddenly, even a Worthington Cup date away to third division opposition seems less daunting.
EVERTON (4-4-2): Wright; Hibbert, Yobo, Weir, Unsworth; Carsley, Gravesen, Li Tie, Pembridge; Radzinski, Campbell. Subs: Stubbs, Ferguson, Naysmith, Rooney, Gerrard.
FULHAM (4-4-2): Van der Sar; Finnan, Knight, Goma (Melville 26), Wome; Legwinski, Davis, Inamoto (Boa Morte 55), Malbranque; Marlet, Hayles (Sava 60). Subs: Clark, Taylor.
BOOKINGS: Everton's Unsworth (foul) and Campbell (ungentlemanly conduct) and Fulham's Wome, Hayles (fouls) and Melville (ungentlemanly conduct).
ATT: 34,371

Boss hails comeback star Kevin
By Andy Hunter, Daily Post
Sep 30 2002
DAVID MOYES has revealed how Kevin Campbell fought to reclaim his confidence after a catalogue of injury problems left the Everton star in torment. The Blues striker struck for the fifth time in eight games on Saturday as Moyes' side comfortably overcame highflying Fulham at Goodison Park.
Campbell's tally is already one better than his Premiership total for last season, when a similarly fine start was devastated by serious ankle and back problems. But after working all summer with Everton's part-time fitness coach Auralien Henry - uncle of Arsenal hitman Thierry - Campbell has recaptured his form and, according to Moyes, his belief. The Blues boss said: "Kevin is doing great this season, he's regained his confidence. "I'm delighted for him because a lot of his problems stemmed from injuries and fighting those injuries did get him down. "But he hasn't missed five minutes of training since the summer and he's feeling the benefit of it now. I know a lot of people used to say as you get older you don't have to train as much but I think the opposite is true now, you have to put in more training the older you get. "It is so important not to ease up on your training as you get older. "Players love to get out there and play, but whether we like it or not all our careers come to an end around the mid-30s and you want to be remembered for being a good footballer.
"If Kevin can stay free of injury and continues with the training he will continue to benefit."
Campbell's deft header was followed 23 seconds later by Thomas Gravesen's exocet as Everton coasted to victory, before the Blues striker was involved in an ugly injury-time bust-up with Fulham defender Andy Melville. "Fulham must have thought he was at it but Kevin was kicked," insisted Moyes. David Weir was also caught up in a melee that rekindled memories of the spat at Craven Cottage last year when the Scottish international was harshly sent off. And Weir said: "A few people were getting a bit over-excited, trying to make it look bigger than it was. They were flashpoints out of nothing really and there was no need for it." Moyes also reserved praise for Campbell's strike partner Tomasz Radzinski, who twice beat Fulham keeper Edwin van der Sar only to see both second-half efforts rebound off the woodwork. The Blues boss added: "Tomasz's workrate was exceptional. It wasn't just his pace that caused problems, he was always close to getting on the end of things and showed a great attitude. "It took us ten minutes to sort Fulham out. In that time they were looking dangerous but then we took control. "At half-time I would have been happy with 1-0 but we showed a very professional attitude and should have scored a third in the second half."

Hot-shot Morrell has Blues in sights
Report By Mark Currie, Daily Post
Sep 30 2002
EVERTON fans won't need reminding that the Worthington Cup competition has provided more than a few banana skins in recent years for the Goodison Park club. Their hopes of a change in fortunes this year have hardly been enhanced by the prospect of facing the country's leading goalscorer in tomorrow night's second-round clash at third division Wrexham. If the Merseyside visitors to the Racecourse are scratching their heads and asking 'Andy who?' there will probably be more than a few occasional Wrexham followers equally uninformed about Doncaster-born Andy Morrell, who has already banged in 13 goals this season at an average of more than one a game. His double in a 2-2 draw against Bury at the Racecourse on Saturday - his 28th birthday - puts him on the brink of equalling a long-standing club record of scoring in nine successive matches, currently shared by Tommy Bamford and Kevin Russell, who is now the Dragons' assistant manager, so the Blues cannot
say they haven't been warned. Inevitably, Morrell's goalscoring form will spark speculation of a move to a higher level. However, the modest striker says much of his success is down to the efforts of his team-mates, who have made a positive start to their third division campaign following the disappointment of relegation last season. "I think a lot of people are looking at players in the third division generally with the state of finances in football. "If I can score against Everton, OK, but I if I don't and we win I'll be delighted," said the in-form striker."

Everton 2, Fulham 0 (Echo)
Sep 30 2002 By David Prentice At Goodison Park
EVERTON and Fulham is an unlikely grudge match. But so, too, is the prospect of the dullest Prime-Minister ever staying out late to have a Currie. Football, like politics, can shock. Back when Everton didn't just celebrate being in the top flight, they regularly topped it, they enjoyed a curious relationship with an inoffensive side down South. The unlikeliest of antagonists, matches with Luton Town often descended into fractious, badtempered brawls. But the end product was always the same. Everton won. Fast forward 15 years and the modern day Toffees are fast developing the same kind of rapport with Fulham. Jean Tigana's side is made up of neat and tidy continentals, built like basketball stars and with a noncontact ethos to match. Until they meet Everton. The last three meetings between the clubs have seen players sent off, brawls erupt from nothing, feuds simmer and strikers substituted before they could be sent off. And Everton have usually won. It was the same on Saturday. A match devoid of any controversy exploded in a mass demo.
Edwin Van Der Sar demonstrated a despicable desire to get a fellow pro sent off, David Weir demonstrated that underneath that cool, calm exterior a short fuse burns which can be lit by the sight of a Fulham jersey - and Andrew Melville demonstrated the lack of anything remotely resembling brain cells as he stalked Kevin Campbell around the penalty box for four minutes waiting to exact revenge for some perceived injustice. And at the end of it all, Everton demonstrated that they have the measure of Fulham. They beat them for the 11th time in a league match at Goodison Park. The two clubs have met there in League action . . . 11 times. It was a hugely satisfying afternoon for David Moyes. Six months ago he watched as an Everton team he had just inherited swept the Londoners aside on the back of a baying crowd and an immense injection of adrenalin.
This time, with six of the same personnel on duty, he oversaw a side which is fast becoming his own outthink and outplay Jean Tigana's upwardly mobile outfit. Some of that was down to the restoration of a more orthdox four-man midfield, but of more significance was the individuals he has added and the little bit-extra he is dragging from others he has inherited. Richard Wright made a handful of important early saves, Li Tie (right) enjoyed one of his most effective afternoons in a Blue jersey - and then there was Joseph Yobo. The home fans have waited a long time to watch the Nigerian defender in action, and they weren't disappointed. Quick and commanding, he added an element of pace Everton's rearguard has sorely needed. But he also showed an assured and constructive presence. When he leaped to chest a 27th minute ball down under pressure, and slotted a simple pass forward to a waiting midfielder, there were murmurs of appreciation around the ground - and knowing nods in the dug-out. But the more familiar faces are also showing levels of increased productivity. Tomasz Radzinski was a constant and potent threat to the Fulham defence. He was not on the scoresheet this time, but that was down to bad luck rather than bad finishing as his contribution did much to unsettle the Londoners. Then there was Kevin Campbell. The much debated centre-forward scored for the third successive match, held the ball up powerfully and intelligently - and deserved the kind of applause Thomas Gravesen received after he had capped a sloppy first 45 minutes' work with a dream of a goal. Those strikes, within a minute of each other in first half time-addedon, were scant reward for Everton's pressure. For eight minutes Everton were all at sea, with Fulham threatening to continue their impressive assault on the higher reaches of the Premiership table. Wright fielded a crisp Inamoto drive confidently, blocked a Legwinski shot after the midfielder had burst clean through and then watched David Unsworth (right) dash back to clear off the line from Hayles. Inamoto then shot a foot wide from 20 yards, as a repeat of the opening hour of Middlesbrough's visit to Goodison looked on the cards. But then Everton worked it out. They began to control possession, and when Lee Carsley selflessly chased down Van Der Sar and slid in to challenge he was rewarded with a loose ball which he hacked into the side-netting.
Carsley has had to wait a long time for his first team chance this season, but he is one of the few midfielders at Everton who gets into the opposition box regularly and with a little match-sharpness behind him could be the man to answer David Moyes' demand for more goals from that department of his team. One midfielder who already has a goal to his name this season is Mark Pembridge - and he was instrumental in breaking the deadlock with half-time approaching. Everton were fortunate to be awarded a free-kick when Carsley overstretched challenging Wome, but once again Pembridge's delivery was outstanding. The little Welshman doesn't have the chin to be a new Andy Hinchcliffe, but his dead-balls are fast developing the same threat. He clipped in a ball with pace and swerve, and Campbell cleverly angled it past the goalkeeper for the third weekend in a row.
With Goodison rocking, Thomas Gravesen (left) increased the decibel level when he romped forward onto Radzinski's square pass and threaded a superb 25 yard daisy cutter inside Van Der Sar's right hand post. Once again the celebrations were straight from a Boris Karloff movie, but there should have been plenty more opportunities to refine them in a one-sided second half. Gravesen's carbon copy free-kick of Pembridge's before him was inches from connecting with Campbell's forehead again, the Dane had a sizzling drive from Campbell's pullback blocked by the 'keeper and Radzinski couldn't quite control the sharp rebound. Unsworth's rising 20 yard drive was athletically pushed over, Campbell's flying header was pushed out by the 'keeper, Radzinski rattled the right hand post with a stabbed shot after darting in front of his marker, then struck the inside of the left hand post after bursting onto Campbell's flick. Ironically Radzinski was almost gifted the goal he deserved in the 84th minute, when Van Der Sar slipped trying to collect a soft header and gratefully clutched the ball just before it could trundle over the line. Then the silliness started. Steve Dunn deserved praise for not following the lead of previous Everton-Fulham refs and brandishing red cards.
The Loftus Road rematch is Everton's last away game of the season. Should be worth waiting for.
EVERTON (4-4-2): Wright, Hibbert, Weir, Yobo, Unsworth, Carsley, Gravesen, Li Tie, Pembridge, Campbell, Radzinski. Unused substitutes: Stubbs, Ferguson, Naysmith, Rooney, Gerrard.
FULHAM (4-4-2): Van Der Sar, Finnan, Knight, Goma (Melville 27 mins), Wome, Inamoto (Boa Morte 54 mins), Davis, Malbranque, Legwinski, Hayles (Save 60 mins), Marlet. Unused substitutes: Clark, Taylor.
Referee: Steve Dunn. Bookings: Unsworth (36 mins), Wome (44 mins), Hayles (47 mins), Campbell and Melville (94 mins).
GOALS: Campbell (44 mins) 1-0, Gravesen (46 mins) 2-0.
Attendance: 34,371.

Moyes praises commitment
Sep 30 2002 Liverpool Echo
DAVID Moyes's first game as Everton manager was a 2-1 win at home to Fulham.
He has been in charge now for 17 league games since March and has been praised for his positive approach. Moyes (right) said: "I'd like people to come to see us because we make tackles, we get around the opposition, there's energy and people can see players that they had questioned as to how hard they wanted to work and now see them excelling. "That shows they are really working for each other. Players who are coming in like Lee Carsley - who did really well - are as committed as the ones in the team." He added: "We are up and at'em and that's what the public want to see here. They will take inadequacies in some of our technical abilities if they see a wholehearted, honest fight every week. "There's a sense of team spirit here, that's evident in everything they do. And although they haven't always got the right results, there's not a game they have been involved in that they haven't given their all."

Cup clash for hot-shot Kev
Sep 30 2002 By David Prentice, Liverpool Echo
DAVID MOYES will resist any temptation to wrap his in-form top scorer Kevin Campbell in cotton wool tomorrow night. The 32-year-old striker (left) scored his fifth goal of the season on Saturday - and is currently outstripping hotshots like Michael Owen, Alan Shearer and Ruud Van Nistelrooy.
But despite taking a buffetting from Fulham at the weekend he is set to be sent out again at Wrexham tomorrow. "Kevin picked up a few knocks but he was okay to train yesterday," said Moyes. "There could be a temptation to give him a break, but on the other hand he will want to keep going right now with the goals going in for him." Influencing Moyes' decision will also be the news that Duncan Ferguson is not fit enough to start a match yet. "I've said before that Duncan is a while away," he added. Campbell (right) has played every minute of every match so far, and Moyes also pointed out that he has not missed a training session since the summer. "He hasn't missed five minutes of training since the summer and he's feeling the benefit of it now," he said.
"I know a lot of people used to say as you get older you don't have to train as much, but I think the opposite is true now. If Kevin can stay free of injury and continues with the training he will continue to benefit." Only the Arsenal duo of Henry and Wiltord and Chelsea's 36-year-old Gianfranco Zola have scored more Premiership goals than Campbell this season. The Blues boss, meanwhile, reacted to weekend reports linking him with a future swoop Sunderland defender Jody Craddock.
"He is a player who interested us before we signed Joseph Yobo and Li Wei Feng," he said. "We are not looking at that department any longer."

Confident Yobo made great start for Blues
Sep 30 2002 By David Prentice
DAVID WEIR saluted a new defensive hero at Everton, after Joseph Yobo finally made his long awaited debut against Fulham at Goodison Park. The 21-year-old Nigerian (right) enjoyed a superbly composed start to his Everton career, as the Blues kept only their second clean sheet of the season, and afterwards central defensive partner David Weir said: "I thought Joseph did really well. He showed a lot of strength, a lot of ability and a lot of confidence coming in. "A debut is always difficult and he showed a lot of maturity, but that's nothing against Alan Stubbs who has played well all season and shows the competition for places we have at the club now, which is what we want.
"Joseph has a lot of attributes, but pace is definitely one of them and that's something you are born with." Everton's 2-0 win took the Blues up to ninth place in the Premiership, and inflicted only Fulham's second defeat of the season. Weir added: "Fulham have started the season well and are always a difficult team to beat, so we have to feel positive about winning that game. "You always want to take points you feel you deserve and we felt we possibly should have more points going into this game. "It wasn't a trend we wanted to keep going and with a couple of difficult League games coming up it was a big game for us. "We knew it was very important and they started well, but once we figured out what they were doing and the best way to stop them we took control." Once again, though, the match ended in an unseemly flare-up with Weir again at the heart. Last season at Craven Cottage he was harshly red-carded when he was trampled on, and on Saturday goalkeeper Edwin Van Der Sar seemed intent on trying to get the Blues' skipper dismissed again when he plunged dramatically to the ground after racing to stand alongside Weir in a mass confrontation.
"There were a few people getting a bit excited today over not too much," said Weir afterwards. "They were trying to make things bigger than they were and that's disappointing when you see things like that to be honest. "There were flashpoints out of nothing. I didn't think there was much in it. Kevin Campbell got fouled, and for some reason they seemed to think he hadn't been fouled and it all kicked off from that. "We won the game and that's what should be talked about rather than anything else. "We've played as well as that in a few games this season and got nothing. We played very well at Southampton and lost. At the end of the day performances are only remembered if you have won, and that was the important thing about today's result."

Belles put Blues out
Sep 30 2002
DONCASTER Belles came out on top in the only all-National Division tie against Everton in the opening round of the FA Nationwide Women's Premier League Cup yesterday. The South Yorkshire side defeated the Blues 3-0 thanks to first-half efforts from Becky Easton and Gemma Hunt and a goal from England striker Karen Walker midway through the second half. Liverpool needed penalties to defeat Wolverhampton Wanderers after the scores were tied 2-2 after extra-time.
Carinne Ireland and Gill Hart gave Liverpool a 2-0 lead at the break but Wolves came back through goals by Louise Holmes and Amy McCann. Lisa Baxter, Jackie Bertie, Hart and Louise Hastie all converted for Liverpool while Nicole Allison was the only one to find the net from the spot for the midlands side. Goals from Holly Newman, Jodie Taylor, Natalie Preston and Kate Hooley handed Tranmere Rovers a 4-0 win over Millwall Lionesses. In the shock of the round, Southampton Saints were dumped out of the cup 3-0 by Bristol Rovers.

Ace Yobo adds great strength to defence
Sep 30 2002 By Tommy Smith
EVERTON'S win over Fulham was fully deserved - but perhaps the impact of two players can provide David Moyes with a lot of satisfaction in the months to come. Joseph Yobo and Tomasz Radzinski were two of the reasons that the Blues proved far too good for the Londoners. Yobo (left), after an unhappy start to his Goodison career through injury, produced an assured performance in defence.
It was not just a competent display, which kept Fulham at bay, but he didn't put a foot wrong, played with great confidence and always looked comfortable on the ball. He probably edged the man of the match for me. Manager Moyes' problems recently have been with a leaky defence, but Yobo's presence added strength to the rearguard and he was never troubled. At the other end, Radzinski ran the visitors ragged. He threatened on many occasions with his jinking runs and his pace, and he always looked capable of providing more than the two goals - courtesy of Kevin Campbell and Thomas Gravesen - by which the Blues won. Perhaps the only criticism one can pinpoint is that Radzinski had the chances to score more goals, but I feel these will come as his partnership with Campbell develops. Apart from an early scare, Fulham didn't have a great deal to offer. Once the Blues went ahead and quickly added the second the result was never in doubt. The Blues look a bit more balanced under Moyes and the team has more of a purpose about it. They play with great energy and it was typified by Li Tie, who seemed to be everywhere. He, too, looks a good player.
Everton's win took them into the top half of the table and if they reproduce this kind of display they will finish in the top 10 this season.




















September 2002