A 67th minute opener from Jose Baxter and a second ten minutes from time gave Everton a double over Blackburn having beaten them back in January when it provided a 6 goal feast but today at Finch Farm this failed to live up to that standard.

A late change to the line up saw Tyias Browning and Apostolos Vellios withdrawn and replaced by Seamus Coleman and Conor Grant.

The first half offered very little but will be remembered by a 5 minute hail storm midway through an uneventful first period.

Blackburn looked the threatening side with efforts from a Robbie Cotton header and two efforts from the captain Nick Blackman.

Everton’s goal threats were minimal apart from a blocked attempt from Conor Grant.


Everton started brighter in the second half as both teams resisted to make changes at the break.
Silva was in a good position to score but failed to connect to a cross.

Seb Usai made a good a save from Baxter but a miss from Baxter moments later looked to be Everton’s best chance as he managed to send his effort high over the bar from 8 yards out.

Jose Baxter was shining in his role and looked to activate things then finally got Everton’s first attempt on Usai’s goal just before the hour mark .

Everton made changes bringing on Pennington who went to the right back position and Coleman going into the right hand midfield berth.

Finally Everton made a breakthrough with 23 minutes remaining when Baxter made amends for his earlier miss to put the home side ahead. A shot was let fly from distance which somehow went under the body of Usai and cross the line with an assist off the post which seemed to please the watching David Moyes.

John Lundstram was caught in possession by John O’Sullivan who to feed Blackman but will be rueing the opportunity he spurned for not beating Davies in the Everton goal but credit to Davies for the save.

The missed chance from the visitors set Everton on their way as a goal from substitute Hope sealed the game as the lead was increased to 2 goals.

A delightful Barkley assist left Hope to dink the onrushing keeper and give the blues a last home win of the campaign.


Teams: Everton: Davies, Coleman, Dier, Duffy, Weir, Lundstram, Orenuga (Long 80), Barkley, Silva (Hope 61), Baxter Grant (Pennington 67). Unused Subs Roberts(GK), Forrester

Coach Alan Stubbs

Blackburn Rovers : Usai, Henley, Anderson Fernadez (O’Sullivan 62), O’Connor, Edwards(Wylie 64), Ribeiro, Cotton (Hanley 64), Blackman (C), Knowles Maclaren. Unused Subs Urwin, Payne

Coach Gary Bowyer

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