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Everton 1 Man City 1: Instant reaction

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Have Everton turned the corner with this result?

Alex Livesey/Getty Images

After a disastrous Christmas Everton finally looked to have rediscovered some of their fight, holding champions Man City to a deserved draw at Goodison Park.

Phil Jagielka was forced to laugh off suggestions of a dressing room split this week and the squad showed their unity and support for their manager with a battling display.

The sight of City - who Everton have an excellent record against - certainly helped but the team moved forward with more purpose than they have done in several weeks.

Morale can only be further improved with this result, especially as they had to recover from a goal down to snatch a point. Goodison also got its growl back with the sell-out crowd getting right behind the team and providing an intimidating and intoxicating atmosphere.

That said they still had to ride their luck in the first half, with David Silva in fine form, ducking and weaving in the midfield.

Silva, Stevan Jovetic and Jesus Navas all had half chances in the first period but failed to test Robles. But given what we have been through the past month the players were due a little fortune.

Once again passing the ball to Romelu Lukaku in dangerous areas is Everton's most dangerous weapon and the big Belgian certainly had the better of Eliaqium Mangala, who barely looks a £3million player let alone £32million.

The longer the game went on the more Everton looked like stealing the win, but once again bad fortune struck at the worst possible moment. Pablo Zabaleta appeared to handle the ball but no free kick was given, with midfielder Fernandhinho eventually steering home with his head after Silva's shot took a wicked deflection.

Given Everton's fragile morale most fans feared the worst, so it is credit to the players that the struck back straight away.

It is also of little surprise that is was Steven Naismith who did. The Scot is a fighter and one of the bright spots from an otherwise disappointing season.

The irony is that Naismith's fine form through the middle means Ross Barkley has to be pushed out wide. The England man showed flashes of his quality, but struggles to make an impact when out on the wing.

Aiden McGeady was also at his infuriating best, with the Goodison crowd seemingly losing patience with the Ireland international.

The return of John Stones was also crucial to this result. Stones has matured into a fine footballer of the past 12 months and is now our best centre back. He played like the senior man alongside captain Phil Jagielka and hit fitness is crucial - the medical team need to wrap him up in cotton wool between matches.

All in all a very satisfying result given the opposition and recent form. The players, manager and fans seem to have come alive again and there is no reason why they can't go down and get a result against West Ham in the cup on Tuesday.

They may not have completely turned the corner, but they are certainly heading in the right direction.