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March 22, 2014
• Goodison Park, Liverpool
Referee: M. Oliver
• Attendance: 36260
L. Baines 20'
R. Lukaku 53'
R. Barkley 58'
W. Bony 33'
A. Williams 90'+
Everton see out the match with their lead preserved, and they move to fifth in the Premier League table! Swansea, however, stay afloat - but only just, as they sit four points above the bottom three and will be grateful that none of their relegation rivals picked up any points today! I've been Livio Caferoglu and thank you for joining me this afternoon. Goodbye!
90' + 3'
90' + 2'
Assist Pablo Hernández
90' + 2'
Goal Ashley Williams
90' + 2'
SWANSEA PULL ONE BACK... BUT IS IT TOO LATE?!?! Hernandez fizzes in a corner, which Williams powers in with his head! Everton face a nail-biting conclusion to this match...
There will be three minutes of time added on.
MICHU AGAIN!!!! The striker is getting into all the right positions, but his finishing is still some way from the razor sharpness that it was prior to his injury earlier in the season. Shelvey releases the attacker with a sweeping diagonal pass, but he can only head over the bar.
Naismith does his bit at the back to deny Rangel from progressing any further down the right-hand flank.
Everton's subs seem to have done the trick, as they are suddenly keeping the ball extremely well and nullifying the pressure posed by Swansea in advanced areas.
Monk is screaming furiously at his players. The Swansea boss is livid with the manner in how his Swansea team have failed to take their chances, while on the same token concede some very cheap goals.
HOW DID HE MISS THAT!!! Hernandez is unmarked in the box after being found with another superb through ball by Shelvey, but he somehow shoots straight at Howard from a matter of inches away!
Chico takes up the role of auxilary right winger and tries to launch a deep cross, but Baines is there to throw himself at the ball.
Everton should see this result out, but the way they are finishing off their business is unconvincing to say the least. The game is currently being played in their half!
MICHUUUU!!!! Shelvey sets up Michu with a deft through ball, but the Spaniard hesitates for too long and the ball ends up being slid away from under his feet for a corner. That's probably to be expected from a player who has spent the last 17 matches out injured!
Shelvey and Barry engage in some handbags after the former Liverpool man is perhaps guilty of being too meaty with his challenge into the Everton anchor.
The tempo is beginning to wind down, as we enter the last 20 minutes... or could there be some late drama?
BRAVO MCGEADY!!! The winger goes on a mazy dribble and finds a series of pockets, before teeing up Lukaku, who sees a shot deflect off a Swansea shirt. He then reclaims the ball and unleashes an effort just over the bar!
Jonathan De Guzmán
Garry Monk makes two substitutions, as Jonathan De Guzman enters the fray at the expense of Jose Canas. Surprisingly, Bony is replaced by Michu. The earlier introduction of Shelvey probably made it impossible to have both strikers on the pitch at the same time.
HANDBALL? A corner is driven into the middle of the Everton box, and Chico's extraordinary overhead kick appears to be blocked by the hand of Distin! However, it would've been harsh as the centre-back had no time to manoeuvre himself.
MIRALLAS!!!!!! The Belgian profits from Davies' misjudgment deep in his own half, and he ploughs forward with the goal at his mercy, but Vorm is equal to the winger's close-range finish!
Hernandez switches to the left-hand side to accommodate substitute Shelvey, who slots into the middle of Swansea's attacking trident, and he is unfortunate to slip before taking his shot on the edge of the box from Davies' cross. He's still as bright as ever!
HOW CLOSE CAN YOU BE?!?! Bony can't believe his (lack of) luck as he sends a powerful header goalwards from Hernandez's pinpoint cross, but Howard tips the ball wide of the post in full flight!
Swansea's response is encouraging, as they hit Everton on the break through Hernandez, but his cross is scuffed off the heel of Dyer in the box.
Assist Kevin Mirallas
Goal Ross Barkley
HOME AND DRY!!!! The defending was of the schoolboy variety, but it doesn't deny Barkley from securing the home side a precious victory! A corner is swung in, and it's flicked on towards the midfielder, who touches the ball home! Swansea have a mountain to climb now.
Bony is on duty to defend a corner at the near post, and Everton are given a second bite of the cherry from the set-piece.
Dyer is furious with himself after petuantly pushing Baines in the box, despite the left-back nervously allowing the ball to bounce in front of him. That could have developed into a potential goalscoring chance...
Assist Kevin Mirallas
Goal Romelu Lukaku
LUKAKU TO THE RESCUE!!!! It may only be his third goal in 13 appearances, but the Belgian finishes off an exquisite move! He links up with Mirallas on the edge of the box, before his compatriot returns the ball to him with a drilled low cross, which the striker simply tucks away to give Everton the lead for a second time.
DISTIN!!!!! Barkley's cross from a free kick falls straight to the burly defender, who hasn't scored a goal since May 2011, in the box, but he can only scuff his shot and aim for Vorm.
Williams is alert to the danger in the Swansea box, and he takes no chances by putting the ball out of play for an Everton corner.
Barry picks out Lukaku with a clever pass forward, but the Belgian striker drags his shot and it's gathered by Vorm.
The Everton fans are beginning to make their discontent with the team known, as Stones and Barkley feel the heat of the crowd as they make a pair of slip-ups. The young defender almost lost the ball in a critical area of the pitch to Hernandez, but he managed to make amends just in time.
We're back under way!
Welcome back for the second half everyone! It's sure to be a decisive 45 minutes in both sides' seasons - and at both sides of the Premier League table.
Credit must go to Swansea for turning the match around on its head. After an overly cautious start, which saw Everton dominate possession and the Swans chase all over the pitch, the visitors' pressing game was eventually rewarded with an equalising goal and a strong end to the half - reminiscent of their best days under Michael Laudrup. Bring on the second period!
It's half time at Goodison Park, with the score Everton 1-1 Swansea!
45' + 1'
Swansea take three successive corners - their sixth of the match - and Everton just about head the danger away through Distin. Baines then puts the ball out of the touch.
HERNANDEZ!!!!!! The midfielder comes agonisingly close from the set-piece as it takes a wicked deflection and whistles just wide of the post, with Howard stranded on the ground!
It's been all Swansea these past five minutes, and they win a free kick in a promising position, 20 yards away from goal, after Dyer is upended by Baines...
In quick succession, Bony is given too much time to turn and lay-off a team-mate. Even though Everton eventually regroup, they need to tighten up on the Ivorian forward or face being asked more questions.
Dyer is free in a pocket of space, as he cuts inside from the right channel, but his strike is nothing short of speculative.
Stones gifts Swansea a corner, and they almost - by accident, perhaps - take full advantage of Routledge's back-heel for Hernandez from a short set-piece. The winger's cross meets the spiralling head of Williams. and the ball is quickly hacked away.
Hernandez has given Coleman a tough time after a quiet start to proceedings. The motivation of making his milestone 50th appearance for the Welsh side is certainly evident in his performance today.
The game has sprung into the life since that Swansea equaliser, as Everton are awarded a corner, but it ends up going all the way back into their half of the pitch.
Assist Ángel Rangel
Goal Wilfried Bony
IT'S ALL LEVEL!!!! Swansea have been probing for some time, and they get their reprieve! Routledge puts an inch-perfect cross into the box, which Rangel meets at the far post, and the defender's delightful first touch allows him to take the ball down and pick out an onside Bony, who merely has to tap into an open goal!
Swansea have played an astonishing 46 games this season - 11 more than their hosts this afternoon. There can be no denying that the Europa League has impacted on the team's fortunes in 2013-14, but you'd suspect that Everton would be better prepared for such a competition.
Bony releases Britton near the centre-circle, but he takes a heavy knock to the head from Barry's shin. It's unintentional thankfully, and the game promptly resumes.
CANAAAASSSS!!! The mifielder hasn't scored a goal for three years, and it's easy to see why. Rangel bombs down the right and sends a dangerous low cross into the box, which falls to his countryman, but he makes a dog's dinner of his strike and it ends up taking a nick off Stones for an unlikely corner.
Lukaku takes a knock, and there are immediate concerns that he may have suffered a relapse of a previous ankle injury. However, he is on his feet within an instant.
Dyer and Bony are on eachothers' wavelengths again as they play a series of passes around the 18-yard box, but the ball is soon collected by Howard.
Penalty Goal Leighton Baines
Canas finds Routledge on the far left, and the former Tottenham man swings a cross into the box, which Howard gratefully clutches to his chest.
EVERTON TAKE THE LEAD!!!!!!!! It's Baines from the spot, as the full-back smashes the ball into the top-left corner. It was a moment of madness from Chico, who needlessly upended Barkley in the box from Stones' clearance, but the defender makes no mistake about his fifth goal of the season.
PENALTY TO EVERTON!!!
Bony looks up and chips up an intelligent ball into Dyer's path, but the attacker's cross is again not up to scratch as he slips upon steadying himself.
The away side have yet to truly test Tim Howard, as Michu is seen looking rather glum. The attacker was a substitute in the Swans' last match, so he should be on the field at some point later today.
Lukaku and McGeady link up in the final third, resulting in the winger breathing down Chico on the edge of the box, but the Spanish stopper does just enough to force a corner.
Mirallas tries his luck from the right-hand side this time after more good work by Coleman to find his team-mate, but his cross is horribly misjudged and a goal kick is signalled.
SHOULD'VE SCORED!!! Coleman is leading the Everton charge again as he bursts in behind and drills a cross on a plate for Barkley to drive home, but the youngster miskicks in the area and the chance goes begging.
It's taken Everton a few minutes to find their rhythm, but they finally start to click through Coleman, who flies down the right flank and sees a free kick appeal ignored.
Swansea have started brightly so far. They look to press the hosts as far back as possible, despite not seeing much of the ball.
We're under way at Goodison Park!
Swansea are yet to beat Everton in 20 attempts. Can they halt their unsavoury run this afternoon? Whatever happens, it will be an emotional day for both managers. Garry Monk was an important player for Roberto Martinez during the Spaniard's reign in charge of the Welsh outfit a few years ago.
The players flood out onto the pitch - kick-off is now imminent!
The match versus Swansea provides the Toffees with the chance to displace Tottenham in fifth place, having played two games less than the Londoners. They are also trailing their Europa League rivals by two points. Swansea, on the other hand, are languishing just four points above the relegation zone and have no games in hand on nearby sides.
There were hopes that Phil Jagielka would recover from a hamstring injury in time for the visit of the Swans, but he remains sidelined, with John Stones staying on in his absence. Nathan Dyer, meanwhile, has shaken off a troublesome heel setback and is named in the visitors' attacking trident. However, Michu is only deemed good enough for the bench.
SUBS: Amat, Taylor, Shelvey, Michu, Lamah, De Guzman, Tremmel.
SWANSEA XI: Vorm; Rangel, Chico, Williams, Davies; Canas, Britton; Routledge, Hernandez, Dyer; Bony.
SUBS: Robles, Deulofeu, Naismith, Osman, Garbutt, Alcaraz, Browning.
EVERTON XI: Howard; Coleman, Stones, Distin, Baines; McCarthy, Barry; McGeady, Barkley. Mirallas; Lukaku.
TEAM NEWS TO FOLLOW...
Good afternoon everyone and welcome to Goodison Park! Today's clash is in the Premier League between Everton and Swansea City. I'm Livio Caferoglu, the man entrusted with the responsibility of guiding you through all action as it happens on Merseyside.
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