Blackpool 2-0 Everton: Toffees beaten by Championship opponents as Naismith makes debut

After a mediocre start, Ian Holloway’s side upped their game after the break by slotting two goals past Tim Howard to see the Seasiders emerge victors at Bloomfield Road
Everton fell foul to a strong Blackpool side on Sunday afternoon, as goals from Alex Baptiste and trialist James Caton sealed the victory for the Championship outfit in a testimonial match for Keith Southern, who is departing the club after 10 years to join Huddersfield.

David Moyes put forth a strong Toffees squad for the friendly at Bloomfield Room, with Steven Pienaar, John Heitinga and Nikica Jelavic all making starts while Tim Howard, Leon Osman and Victor Anichebe were among those on the bench.

Blackpool featured an equally strong line-up as Thomas Ince, Baptise and Gary Taylor-Fletcher started for the Seasiders, with two trialists in Caton and Adda Djeziri starting on the bench.

The first chance of note came in the form a disallowed goal, as Marouane Fellaini made a blistering run down the left before moving inside and slotting the ball into the Blackpool net only to have the linesman rule his effort offside.

Both sides failed to up the tempo after Fellaini's effort; instead possession was shared equally in a rather scrappy opening period.

The away side found themselves enjoying the majority of the chances in the first half. Debutant Steven Naismith provoked a good save from Halstead when he found space inside the box before firing a low shot towards goal.

Everton enjoyed another chance after half an hour when a well-hit Phil Neville cross from the right wing found Jelavic, who headed just wide of the target.

The Seasiders looked close to breaking the deadlock just before the break when Gerardo Bruna's reverse pass found the run of Taylor-Fletcher, who drilled the ball just wide.

David Moyes made a whole host of chances for the Toffees at the break. Howard replaced Mucha in goal while Osman and Anichebe came on for Pienaar and Jelavic.

Blackpool started the second half on a good footing. Ludovic Sylvestre went close for the Seasiders when his low drive flew just past the far post.

Possession remained in the home side's favour, a 40-yard run from Isiah Osbourne saw him eventually distribute to Taylor-Fletcher, who struck a thunderous effort straight into Howard's gloves from 18 yards out.

Minutes later, Blackpool took the lead when a in-swinging corner-kick from Bruna found Baptise, who simply nodded the ball past Howard.

Everton failed to bounce back from going a goal down, almost conceding another. Louis Almond did well to take the ball from Robert Duffy, before running round the keeper and firing just wide of goal.

Blackpool made no mistake five minutes from time, though, when trialist Caton latched onto a neat through-ball before smoothly firing past Howard to seal the win for the Championship side.