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Everton 2 Tottenham 1 - The Blues are back!

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Football always surprises you and once again, with me conemplating nothing else but heavy defeat, Everton pull a footballing rabbit out of the hat with their best performance of the season and one that reminded my of why I love the club so much!

 

Goodison is a special place under the lights. There is something about night games that seems to get the players fans going - I would take a season of night games above 12:45pm kick offs anyday (I'm sure you guys stateside would as well - early mornings, urghh!) For a variety of reasons I haven't been able to attend many games at the old lady recently, so this was my first trip to Goodison in 14 months.

Heading into the ground I don't know whether it was just my personal excitment or not but I got the sense the supporters were up for this one, as if the Stoke result had touched a nerve with the instant reaction of galvanising everyone into a vocal response for the next game.

Everyone was also visibly boosted by the decision by Moyes to FINALLY go with 4-4-2. The results were almost instant, with Louis Saha picking the ball up 35 yards out, headed towards goal unchallenged, and responded to the supporters shouts of "shooooot" by burying a fizzing low drive into the bottom corner.Goodison went crazy (me included!) and Saha celebrated his first goal in 11 months with gusto.

What followed was a half that summed up everything that is great about Premier League football. We hussled and harried at every opportunity, Spurs, with their glittering array of attacking responded instantly, having two close efforts before Rafael Van Der Vaart nodded them level on 11 minutes.

I thought the ref missed a blatent push on an Everton playerin the Spurs box (I was at the other so couldn't see who it was!) and my frustration was complete when Crouch appeared to barge Heitinga in the back before heading back for Dutchman Van Der Vaart to nod home.

 

Game on.

Everton though still looked far more fluid and balanced then they have done in weeks. Saha looked like a different player and profited from having a strike partner to work off. Jermaine Beckford's composure in front of goal is still suspect, but his pace is a danger to oppositon defenders and he linked up well with Saha throughout the game.

Spurs ended the half on top and should have gone ahead when Crouch inexplicably failed to get himself back on side in order to slot home a Gareth Bale cross - that proved the turning point of the match.

Everton flew out of the blocks in the second half, detemrined to  get back in front. Suddenly we saw a different team from what we have seen for much of this season. Marouane Fellaini was a rock - his best performance  since the Man City game last year while Mikel Arteta finally started to hold onto the ball and dictate play a bit more.

All the praise in the world though has to go to Seamus Coleman. Despite all the fuss over Gareth Bale pre-game there was only one winger on everyone's lips after the match. With Bale successfully marshalled by the excellent Phil Neville Everton were able to fight fire with fire with Coleman's piercing runs down the right wing.

He showed inexperience at times, especially when he shot tamely at Gomes when clean through. But apart from tha he was a menace to the Spurs backline and it was fitting that he nodded home the winner with 15 minutes left - just as I feared I would have to write yet another failed-to-take-our-chances types match report.

We didn't although Yakubu's late miss proved to me that he is finished as an Everton player.  Be it lack of fitness, motivation, attitude or all three, he has just completely lost it and needs to be moved on.

But to focus on that would be unfair on an otherwise flawless night for Everton. Here's hoping we can finally turn our season around and use this battling performance - and crucially, result - to go on to bigger and better things, starting with Scunthorpe in the cup in Saturday.

COYB!!