A better performance from Everton than midweek, but it yielded the same number of points as the decent-ish showing against Tottenham a week ago. The performance of the team deserved more than the poor performance of the referee, but dodgy penalties aside there is still room for improvement from some players.
Tim Howard 6/10
With hardly anything to do the keeper was still beaten by Yaya Toure’s penalty, but only just.
Tony Hibbert 6/10
It’s been a long while since there were any calls for the dependable right back to return to the starting line-up but Hibbert’s steady display showed why he still has something to offer. Yes his passing is still a bit substandard but he’s become more careful with the ball and is still a consummate defender. Not first choice material but can do a job.
Leighton Baines 7/10
Better from the fullback; Baines is still missing a player of the same ilk as Steven Pienaar, Kevin Mirallas is very direct and not looking for the same relationship with the England left back as Pienaar. Still Baines uses the ball sensibly and was aware of his defence responsibilities.
Phil Jagielka 6/10
Another player who played better than in the last couple of games. The captain was more assured than he has been but without the threat of Sergio Aguero his afternoon was easier than he may have anticipated. He was unbelievably unlucky with the penalty - it never was - but should never have have dangled his leg in there when Milner was moving away from goal.
Sylvain Distin 6/10
Still nowhere near the standards that the Frenchman used to aspire to this was nevertheless a much improved showing. The legs are still seizing up and the pace is disappearing quickly but the brain still functions. A few too many stray long passes though, and you still feel that ultimately Distin is playing on borrowed time.
Gareth Barry 6/10
Looks rusty. Came back from his ankle injury a little too quickly but with James McCarthy injured and Mo Besic still finding his feet there aren’t many other options. Barry looked a little slow and less mobile than before, though his use of the ball was neat and tidy, but you’d expect no less.
Muhamed Besic 6/10
Another tidy performance from the Bosnian, who is improving game on game. Thrown in a bit at the deep end - Spurs then City? Not ideal - he’s learning quickly. The was a little less energy than in midweek but his awareness is getting better, There’s still plenty of room for improvement though.
Seamus Coleman 6/10
All seems a bit average so far, and you’d be right. Moving Coleman up to the wing seemed a good idea as it would help to nullify the threat from the City left but it mane that the Irishman was more closely marked than normal. He made a few penetrating runs but wasn’t able to get in behind. We’re still waiting for him to really arrive this season.
Kevin Mirallas 8/10
The only player that looked interested in attacking in the first half, taking to game to the City defence. The speedy Belgian is now vitally important to the way Everton play, his pace and trickery are unique to the team, and his confidence is high. Now he just needs to make sure there are less shots like his first half outside-of-the-boot attempt, and more like his belter at Spurs.
Samuel Eto’o 8/10
This is some player. The former goalscorer is slowly being turning into a number 10 by Roberto Martinez and Saturday was his most accomplished performance yet. After a pretty queit first half he came alive in the second: probing passes, penetrating runs, linking play, starting play, and cajoling teammates. Worked very well with Ross Barkley when he came off the bench.
Romelu Lukaku 5/10
Yet again the only out and out striker Everton have was starved of the ball. His movement could be better, and he need to keep working when things don’t come off. But, he could have grabbed a point but for an outstanding save from Joe Hart. That was his only shot of the game; Lukaku is a player reliant on service, when the team isn’t clicking he doesn’t see much of the ball.
Ross Barkley 7/10
A really good half hour from the youngster, more confidence and running at players, most encouraging though was hisreal willingness to look for the ball. He still needs to work on decision making but hopefully this will really start his season. The only blot was a booking for diving, which by the way was not a dive. Contact sport and all that Andre Marriner. The less said about that referee the better, and no rating…
Leon Osman n/a
Only on the pitch for about five minutes.