Everton 1-1 Fulham (pens: 6-7)

Blues go out in penalty shootout disappointment.​

A dreadful penalty by Amadou Onana and Idrissa Gana Gueye seeing his hit the post saw Everton fail to make the final four of a competition that continues to haunt the club.

Everton were pushed all the way by a resilient Fulham side with Beto getting the vital late equaliser to send the tie into a penalty shootout after an unfortunate own goal off Michael Keane had given the Cottagers a first half lead.

After four straight victories with four clean sheets, the resurgent Everton switch their attention from the Premier League to the Carabao Cup on Tuesday evening as Fulham arrived at Goodison. Both sides were looking go to progress through to the final four, semi-final draw eager to continue their pitch for a potential trip to Wembley and silverware.

Belgian midfielder Amadou Onana was relishing the challenge when he noted, “We’re kind of changing the story. It feels healthier around the dressing room and in the team, so I’m just pleased to be a part of this team.”

A little over 72 hours after disposing of Burnley with a side that had four changes, Blues boss Sean Dyche had an almost luxury of Jarrad Branthwaite, Idrissa Gana Gueye and a recovered Vitalii Mykolenko all being available to return to the starting line-up.

The Goodison crowd was ready for this and eagerly awaited the team news that confirmed the starting eleven to be: Jordan Pickford, Nathan Patterson, Michael Keane, James Tarkowski (c), Jarrad Branthwaite, Jack Harrison, James Garner, Amadou Onana, Idrissa Gana Gueye, Dwight McNeil and Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

Fulham under former Blues boss Marco Silva have been one of the surprise packages to date this season before last weekend’s hiccup at St.James’s Park saw them not only lose to Newcastle but, have Raul Jimenez sent off for what can only be described as an agricultural assault on Sean Longstaff. Without his primary striker Silva was maybe hoping former Blues midfielder Alex Iwobi might step up to the plate against his old club and former team mates

Having already won at Goodison on the opening day of the season, Silva believed his side could do it again when he said, “We’re not just happy because we want to reach the quarter-finals, we want to play the semi-finals.”

The Portuguese submitted his starting lineup thus: Leno, Tete, Tosin, Bassey, Robinson, Reed (c), Palhinha, Wilson, Iwobi, Willian and Muniz.

Under the lights on a cool but dry evening, our referee was Graham Scott.

A steady opening saw the Blues pressing forward strongly to test the Fulham defence before the visitors strung about twenty passes together before Branthwaite easily denied Reed from getting to a through ball. A nice move down the right saw Gana Gueye get forward and cross but, not accurately enough and Fulham cleared.

Fulham were clearly looking to push both Willian and Alex Iwobi up in support of Muniz while Everton were looking to exploit width, particularly down the right side to try and get crosses towards DCL… and through the opening quarter of an hour, the teams looked well matched.

Patterson hurried Willian into a loose ball that McNeil latched onto to play down the left channel where Branthwaite overlapped and crossed too deeply for DCL. Cool work by Reed saw the Fulham captain get himself out of trouble when pressured by

Keane and McNeil in his own area. McNeil then found Garner who saw his quickly played low cross go behind DCL and when the Blues can again, it was DCL getting to the byeline to set up McNeil who saw his shot rise too quickly and clear the crossbar.

Reid blocked a shot from Gana Gueye and the pressure was kept on Branthwaite again got forward to win the ball and a corner as Fulham hurriedly defended his cross. Everton were beginning to turn the screw and a great cross from Harrison found Branthwaite at the back post, Leno dealing with his header calmly.

Passing 35 minutes, the Blues were seeing more possession without finding the killer cross to punish Fulham with, and the visitors won a free kick for handball by Patterson that gave them a chance. William crossed to the near post where Tarkowski cleared and when Fulham came again, Michael Keane was yellow carded for a foul on Muniz about three yards outside the area. Everton pulled everyone back to defend as Willian hit a daisy cutter wide of the near post.

From the goal kick, Fulham got the ball forward quickly to Robinson on the left and his low, hard cross was inadvertently deflected past Pickford off Michael Keane.

Everton tried to respond with a free kick from Garner going through and out for a goal kick untouched before two minutes of added-on time were announced and they passed by without further incident.

Half Time: 0-1

No changes by either manager for the start of tho second half which saw three early stoppages for ‘injuries’ to Fulham players and a yellow card for Patterson after a collision with Willian. Tarkowski headed crosses from Robinson and Tete clear as Fulham pushed for a second goal as the home crowd continued to vent its frustration at the referee.

A nice move begun by Harrison and involving Patterson and Onana ended up with Harrison crashing a 25-yard effort just wide of the near post. The home crowd were becoming annoyed at time wasting tactics by the visitors before a poor ball by Wilson was almost seized upon by DCL, Leno quick off his line to clear.

Changes on 61 minutes saw Beto replace DCL who had had no joy against Tosin thus far and Fulham responding with Cairney replacing Willian.

Tete was rightly booked for catching .mcNeil from behind on halfway with Pickford stepping up to launch a free kick that led to a Harrison cross that Beto couldn’t get a telling contact on. Branthwaite got back to put a cross from Iwobi out for a corner that led to a shot by Iwobi that Pickford pushed out for a corner from the right, that failed to produce.

The crowd was doing its utmost to lift the players as we passed 70 minutes and Bassey blocked a shot from Garner. Patterson won a corner on the right that was cleared and Tarkowski hurried back to break up a Fulham counter.

Arnaut Danjuma replaced Jack Harrison on 72 minutes as the Blues looked to throw bodies forward in search for the equaliser that, if I’m honest, wasn’t looking like coming.

Inside the final quarter of an hour and Fulham made a double change, Pereira and de Cordova Reid replacing Reed and Wilson respectively.

An error by Tarkowski saw him haul down Palhinha and slightly lucky not to see a yellow card. We were fast approaching kitchen sink time and the equaliser came as Fulham twice failed to clear the ball and a shot from Garner was blocked and bounced nicely for Beto to nod home a short range equaliser.

Goodison responded as both benches looked to make further changes before Tarkowski and Garner both went down in separate incidents with suggestions that Muniz had kicked Tarkowski off the ball.

Fulham sent on Vinicius for Alex Iwobi and Diop for Muniz with under five minutes of normal time remaining.

Seven minutes of added-on time were announced as a knock down header from Beto saw Danjuma smash a volley wide of the target. Last ditch defending by Patterson denied Fulham a back post winner and the Blues survived another raid as Robinson lifted a speculative shot miles over the goal. More desperate defending kept Fulham out before Pereira fouled Gana Gueye to give the Blues a free kick midway inside the Fulham half, that disappointingly failed to produce anything.. and at the final whistle, we were tied and we headed into the lottery of a penalty shootout.

Full Time: 1-1


The teams tossed a coin to see which end the penalties would be taken into and the Gwladys Street End it was who would get the close up action with Everton shooting first.

Beto scored 1-0
Pereira scored 1-1
Dwight McNeil scored 2-1
Cairney scored 2-2
Michael Keane scored emphatically 3-2
Palhinha scored just 3-3
Arnaut Danjuma scored 4-3
De Cordova Reid saved by Jordan Pickford low to his left
Amadou Onana terrible penalty saved by Leno putting pressure on the last penalty
Vinicius scored and we’re tied at 4-4
James Tarkowski scored 5-4
Tete scored 5-5
Leno booked before…
James Garner scored 6-5
Robinson scored 6-6
Idrissa Gana Gueye hit the post 6-6 and if Fulham score…
Tosin scored 6-7
And Everton crash out of the Carabao Cup with Fulham through to the semifinal draw

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