Our very own forum member Alan Ball continues his commitment to bringing all of us everything Everton with his comprehensive match reports covering our Reserve and Youth team matches. IÂ´m sure youÂ´ll all agree it is much appreciated.
Everton Reserves 1 Swansea Reserves 1
After a below standard first 45 minutes Everton finally made a breakthrough on the hour with headed goal from Junior but with 15 minutes of the contest remaining Frenchman Darnel Situ levelled to take a share of the points in Evertonâ€™s last home game of the season.
Alan Stubbsâ€™s side had their first reserve game since the trouncing of Manchester United just over two weeks ago. Stubbs included a few members of the team that took part in the Dallas Cup that were defeated in the semi final stage last weekend.
Alan Curtis included one time target Rory Donnelly in their attack with James Loveridge and Gwion Edwards in a supporting role.
In bright warm sunshine the first 15 minutes lacked excitement only for a very close effort from Irishman Donnelly who hammered a volley wide when he was through on goal.
Everton were slow picking up their pace and their best chance fell to Vellios who failed to connect to a Lundstram cross after a neat headed flick on from Silva as the game remained goalless.
Everton were looking a better prospect and showed promise as the game wore on, right on the closing stages of half time Junior showed his qualities with a thumping 25 yard drive that was only a whisker away from the right hand post of Moreira
EVERTON RES 0 SWANSEA CITY RES 0
The second string got off to a better second half as Vellios saw his effort cleared by Swanseaâ€™s Donnelly which hit a team mate on the back and with the ball going for goal, full back Obeng spared the blushes with a clearance.
The visitors came very close to breaking into the lead when midfielder Kurtis March could only look on to see his effort come off Adam Daviesâ€™s bar then within 60 seconds Everton were in front with a header.
A fine move with Barkley and Baxter combining well with Browning supporting down the right crossed to Silva who met with a header which deceived Moreira with a slight deflection from Obeng.
Barkley had two good opportunities to increase Evertonâ€™s lead further then unfortunately for Everton they paid the price as on 75 minutes the Swans levelled through Situ with a delightful 18 yard effort that went into the bottom corner.
Baxter played Evertonâ€™s substitute Hallam Hope through and could have won the game for Everton at the end only for some heroic goalkeeping from Moriera.
Alan Stubbsâ€™s eleven travel away at Bolton Wanderers next Tuesday.
FULL TIME EVERTON RES 1 SWANSEA RES 1
Everton: Davies, Browning, Touray (Pennington 51), Lundstram, Duffy, Dier, Junior (Barkley 72,) Barkley, Vellios (Long 86), Silva, Baxter. Unused Subs: Grant, Orenuga
Swansea: Moreira, Obeng, Davies, Walsh, Tancock, Situ, Richards, March, Edwards, Donnelly, Loveridge
Everton U18s 5 Crewe U18s 2
A five goal comeback in the second half gave Kevin Sheedyâ€™s youngsters the 3 points after trailing 2-0 at the break. Matthew Pennington pulled one back for the hosts with a brace from Hallam Hope and substitute Anton Forrester to seal the win despite a brave performance from the Railwaymen.
After leaving the sunny climate of the United States, Evertonâ€™s youngsters played their first league game since the defeat at Manchester City 3 weeks ago. The conditions were ideal with warm sunshine and blue skies as the home side got the game underway.
The first chance of a threat fell to the home side as early as the third minute when Orenuga and Hope combined with a good understanding going forward to see Hope be on the end of a pass but Garratt the Crewe keeper made a very good and important stop.
The Alex went on the counter within 60 seconds and beat the offside trap but the visiting striker hastily put his shot without troubling Fitzgibbon.
An incident very similar to yesterdayâ€™s reserve game which brought Fitzgibbon racing off his line to deal with a pacy ball that eluded Evertonâ€™s defence, his clearance hit the back of Creweâ€™s Brandon Moores and was heading goalbound but a good reaction from Jasper Johns spared his team matesâ€™s blushes as he swept the ball from danger.
Garratt again denied an Everton attack after Hope had played Long in with a chance but after a fumble the keeper did well to grasp the ball at the second attempt.
For although Everton were showing signs of putting the opposition under pressure, Crewe were always looking dangerous when they broke.
Grant lost the ball in midfield and it was Ryan Colclough who teased his marker before setting his sights on goal to despatch a well placed shot to give his team the lead.
Crewe doubled their lead with a well taken strike from full back Toby Appleton on the half hour as Evertonâ€™s defence looked troubled and were now faced with a mountain to climb.
HALF TIME EVERTON U18â€™S 0 CREWE ALEX U18â€™S 2
A half time tongue lashing from the blueâ€™s boss Kevin Sheedy was hoping for a response from his team but again it was the visitors who carried on where they left off before the interval as the scorer of the first goal Colclough that forced Fitzgibbon into a fine save.
Time for changes as 2 substitutes were introduced, Forrester and Molyneux replaced Barrow and Orenuga and as in the first half Garratt again was the saviour denying Grant on two ocassions the latter tipping over a free kick.
Evertonâ€™s pressure finally paid off with a multiple of efforts being blocked by the Crewe defence until the ball fell kindly to Pennington to sneak the ball home.
Hope levelled the game two minutes later capitalising on a rare Garratt mistake to prod the ball over the line and make the honours even.
Everton were now in full control and their performance had changed with the weather as the rain hammered it down.
Everton increased their lead further with 2 goals in quick succession, Hope added to his tally then provider Pennington assisted Forrester who kept his composure with a beautiful finish to make it 4-2!
Crewe must not have expected this onslaught in this second period and just as things could not have got any worse for them the inevitable happened as a fifth goal was despatched to make Forrester the proud owner of it and earned him a double.
FULL TIME EVERTON U18â€™S 5 CREWE ALEX U18â€™S 2
Team: Fitzgibbon, Pennington, Johns, Heneghan, Hammar, Barrow (Molyneux 52), Higgins, Grant, Hope (c), Long, Orenuga (Forrester 52). Unused subs: Taudul (GK), Waring, Shannon
Team Coach Kevin Sheedy
Crewe Alex Team: Garratt, Appleton, Hughes, Turton (c), Ray, Pezo, Daniels, Waters, Peach, Colclough, Moores. Subs: Nolan, Wilson
Team Coach James Collins
Match Officials Ref Mr N Barnard Assistants Mr L Ockleshaw and Mr C Bull