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Apologies for the lack of matchthread, though thanks to Stiflers Mom for setting one up. I was lucky enough to get to the game yesterday(hence my massive hangover) and see my wish for a Yakubu goal come true.

 

The Nigerian has slowly been getting back to his old self in recent weeks, especially in the win over Liverpool. But what he has been lacking is a goal as reward for his efforts.. He got that yesterday with a powerful effort midway through the second half.

To be honest I though the goal would never come. Stoke arrived determined to play for a point. They used every tactic in the book, niggly fouls, slow free kicks and throw ins, all to waste time and slow the game down. Faced with a wall of defending we lacked the creativity and incisiveness to break them down, something we will have to rectify as Stoke wont be the last team to come to Goodison and do that this season.

Their methods of attacking were equally primitive. Two long throw ins in particular caused chaos in the box, though I think we were lucky not to go a goal down when Tuncay bundled the ball in from close range. The ref blew for a push on Leighton Baines but to me it looked like weak defending from the left back.

We emerged unscathed though and finally found the breakthrough courtesy of a bit of magic from the Yak.

That now lifts us up to 7th and we can now look forward with a bit of optmism. The European spots are in touching distance now and with two winnable games - Blackpool and Bolton - up next we could be in the top five by the time Arsenal arrive at Goodison in two weeks.

 

The only way is up!!!