Everton faced Reading today at Goodison Park at the U21 level with a welcoming back to the fold for Darron Gibson who has been absent since his injury at West Brom 11 weeks ago.
Everton huffed and puffed putting Reading under a lot of pressure but the stubborn visitors defence held out as Everton needed the victory to make the cut for the next stage of this development league with fixtures running out.
5 players in today´s starting line up were ion the bench for the seniors yesterday at the Madejski stadium.
The opening quarter of an hour offered very little for either side but Junior went close with a shot narrowly over the frame of the goal with a rasping shot.
Vellios was next to go close as his shot was only inches wide of Henly´s post with game remaining goal less.
Junior having a busy afternoon went close again for the home side as Vellios played him through but Henly was quick off the mark to pounce on the ball. Henley repeated his heroics with a good reflex save to deny Junior from a blues corner moments later.
Jordan Obita with 6 England U19 caps to his name threaded a ball inside to Aaron Tshibola but the 17 year old forced Mateusz Tadul into a save.
Just before the break Everton conjured up some nice football with Conor Grant about to get on the receiving end of Kennedy´s ball but a Reading defender blocked it out.
Tyias Browning sped down the flank and won a corner which came to nothing as the second half got underway.
Dominic Samuel who signed a professional contract with the Roylas 12 months ago after his impressive goal scoring for the U18´s netting 13 in 14 games caused a little bit of danger with two attempts. The first one going over the bar then a block from Distin denying the youngster.
Hallam Hope replaced Gibson on 63 minutes with the Irishman glad to get some match practice under his belt then 2 minutes later Vellios produces a shot which Henly did well to save.
Alan Stubbs threw on 2 more subs hoping that would change the game but the teams took a share of the points at the final whistle.
EVERTON U21´S 0 READING U21´S 0
Everton U21: Taudul, Browning, Touray, Junior, Distin, Duffy, Kennedy, Gibson(Hope 63), Vellios, Lundstram, Grant(Long 84)
Unused subs: Springthorpe, , Forester, Pennington,
Reading U21: Henly, Arnold, Griffin, Tshibola, Keown, Sweeney, Taylor, Gunnarsson, Ugwu, Sam, Obita
Unused subs; Losasso , Lincoln, Webb, McDonald, Edwards