Fulltime Thoughts - After the disappointment of being dumped out of the Europa Cup early on by Standard Liege, this berth in the Final is a just reward for Moyes and his side who have battled gamely all season long. Will the Toffees be able to overcome Chelsea right here in a month’s time to break their trophy drought, which has now lasted an interminable 14 years? Only time will tell..
EVERTON WIN! EVERTON WIN! FA CUP FINAL HERE WE COME!
Phil Jagielka - Next up is Jags.. and he buries it! Everton win it 4-2 on spotkicks! Howard’s heroics carry the day!
Anderson - The Brazilian scores easily, left-footed shot curled into the Howard’s right post. 3-2.
James Vaughan - The youngster is cool, Foster gets the direction right but the spotkick is a good height and he can’t get a paw to it. 3-1 now!
Nemanja Vidic - The defender with a stutter-stop run, sends Howard the wrong way but his shot dribbles in off the inside of the post. Oof, 2-1 Toffees now.
Phil Neville - Fizzer against his former side, sends Foster the wrong way! 2-0 Blues now.
Rio Ferdinand - The United captain, down to Howard’s right and saved!! The USMNT goalie makes a great save! Everton lead now!
Leighton Baines - The penalty legend, and no problem, top left corner with Foster going the other way. Cool as an English cucumber him. First goal at Wembley today.
Dimitar Berbatov - I can’t even watch any more.. low and poor and Howard scrambles it away! Still alive!
Tim Cahill - Leading from the front as always.. way over!! Disaster for the Blues. Goodness me.
120’ - Oh well, that’s that. To penalties we will go.
119’ - The left back will take it, and cleared away again by Vidic. Dangit.
118’ - Foster has a moment of madness, can Everton capitalize? First Vaughan charges down an errant clearance, then Baines is hauled down by the United goalie just outside the box.
116’ - United are controlling possession, but it’s mostly side-to-side and Moyes is okay with that. He’s still gnawing at his fingernails, as are we all.
113’ - Vidic has been the Red Devils’ man of the match today, making tackle after tackle, and clearing away a good number of aerial balls played in.
109 - Oh come on ref! Cahill beats Vidic and is away, through on goal and Riley blows his whistle for a foul.. by the Aussie! He’s mad, we’re all mad, and now Cahill is getting a yellow card. Utter BS.
107’ - Baines with another delightful cross, Vaughan’s shot is is wide - that quite clearly deflected off Vidic, but no corner given.
Halftime. This will be a quick break as the teams change sides.
105’ - Pienaar finds Baines deep down the left, his cross is cleared for a corner. That is also cleared away by Vidic.
Now Tevez has a chance, curls in a shot from just outside the box, saved well by Howard.
103’ - Moyes is also considering the very real possibility that Fellaini could get sent off, so he pulls him out and throws on another youngster, twenty-year-old James Vaughan.
99’ - Scholes with a delightful pass behind the backline and Welbeck is through on goal... but pulled back for offside. Whew!
96’ - United want a second booking for Fellaini after he hauls down Vidic. Tense moments these.
93’ - Now Scholes goes into the book for kicking Pienaar.
Oooh! Great bit of talent from Cahill, expertly bringing down a long ball, turning past Rafael and releasing a snapshot that Foster has to kick away. That deserved a goal.
90’ - After a quick turnaround, we get the additional thirty minutes underway. Who still has legs? United have made their third sub, and it’s striker Dimitar Berbatov on for Macheda. His first touch is sublime and the tired Everton defenders will have to remain alert.
90+3’ - Both sides seem happy to let this go to extra time now.
90’ - Fellaini goes up for a high ball and is punched in the head by Foster! No penalty!! In fact the freekick goes against Everton. Nonsense.
88’ - An Everton corner! Lescott and Ferdinand both go for it, it goes wide though the United defender seemed to have had the last touch. No corner, boo.
84’ - Welbeck’s shot goes wide, and Macheda mishits a shot after Howard had a poor punch off a corner. In between that Fellaini gets his customary yellow card, this time for giving Rio Ferdinand the good news off an aerial challenge.
83’ - United have won their last 13 FA Cup semifinals, Everton have won their last 5 - one of them is going to see that record change today.
79’ - Blues scramble the ball away after it pings around in their own box for a good minute or so. Fingertips turning white here.
75’ - Tevez has a crack at goal now, but it’s blocked well by Jagielka.
Then Anderson has a shot into the side-netting, the Blues holding on here.
70’ - Moyes has had enough of the isolated Saha up top, and takes him off, bringing on 18-year-old youngster Jack Rodwell. Can the promising midfielder provide the Blues with the spark they need? It’ll be Cahill alone upfront now.
68’ - OOH! Close shave for the Blues. Welbeck is played into the box, and Phil Jagielka runs right into him with Howard in the melee too. Ref Mike Riley says no penalty but Fergie is absolutely apoplectic. Was that a smirk there from Moyes at his fellow Glaswegian?!
66’ - Now United starting to create pressure on Everton, and Darron Gibson has a shot at goal, saved well by Howard.
Paul Scholes is going to be coming on, Ferguson deciding he wants a goal now. It’ll be Park going off.
63’ - Patrice Evra is the first substitution, coming on for the injured Rafael.
60’ - Welbeck goes on a mazy run through a couple of Blues, but nothing comes out of it.
Now Ji-sung Park gets off a quick shot and it’s just wide of Howard’s post, the goalie did look to have that covered.
58’ - Everton seem to have upped the tempo, is Moyes’ halftime message finally getting through?
53’ - A shot on target! Cahill fires one from outside the box, but Ben Foster is alert to the danger and saves, parrying the ball away to his right.
50’ - Tony Hibbert makes a run down the right, but his cross is cleared. Pretty dull opening to the second half, more of the same from the first half really.
Halftime Thoughts - Quiet half really in terms of real chances, with both teams fashioning a couple of shots. United’s understrength side is looking quite capable of beating Everton, which is disappointing really.
45’ - Everton’s 4-1-4-1 is working to stifle United in the middle, but also means the Blues are not showing too much invention when attacking either.
41’ - Macheda finds Danny Welbeck in a promising position in the box, but his shot is awful. Really awful.
38’ - Pienaar comes off second-best in a challenge with Rafael in the box, and the Blues are appealing for a penalty, but nothing doing.
32’ - The Blues are being hemmed back into their own half now, and Carlos Tevez is starting to make his presence felt. A bit too much for the ref’s liking though, as he is also booked for clattering Pienaar.
28’ - Leighton Baines and Pienaar show off their telepathic communication as the leftback almost breaks into the box before being hauled down Rafael. Freekick, but just a yard away from being a penalty, with the United man going into the book.
25’ - Now Rafael makes a good run and his cross into the box is deflected off Joleon Lescott for a corner, which then is cleared.
18’ - The Blues have had more possession early, but are pretty predictable - a high ball to Fellaini who is then trying to find Louis Saha, with Steven Pienaar and Osman also nibbling around.
12’ - Now Phil Neville gets a pass from Fellaini in the United box, but his shot goes wide.
6’ - Forgotten man Federico Macheda hits a shot wide. Phil Jagielka was left scrambling there.
2’ - Its early on but Marouane Fellaini is already winning aerial battles against Nemanja Vidic, which is important for the Blues.
Leon Osman is off-balance as he hits a half-volley well wide and over. Good start for the Blues.
1’ - Referee Mike Riley gets us underway at Wembley!
Starting lineups - No surprises from David Moyes as he has rolled out his strongest side, which also started last week’s thrilling 3-3 draw at Aston Villa. Sir Alex Ferguson though has made eight changes, with United still in with a chance of winning an unprecedented quadruple. If Everton have ever had a chance of beating United on the national stage, today is it.
Competition: FA Cup Semifinal
Date and start time: Sunday, April 19th at 8:00 a.m. PT / 11:00 a.m ET / 4:00 p.m. BST
Stadium: Wembley Stadium, London, England, United Kingdom
Weather: 64°F/18°C, sunny, 5% chance of precipitation, 14 mph winds
Starting XI - Howard, Hibbert, Jagielka, Lescott, Baines, Osman, Neville, Fellaini, Pienaar, Cahill, Saha.
Subs - Nash, Yobo, Castillo, Vaughan, Jacobsen, Rodwell, Gosling.
Starting XI - Foster, Rafael Da Silva, Ferdinand, Vidic, Fabio Da Silva, Welbeck, Gibson, Anderson, Park, Tevez, Macheda.
Subs - Kuszczak, Neville, Evra, Berbatov, Nani, Scholes, Evans.
Everton had lost 1-0 away at Old Trafford right at the end of 2008, thanks to a controversial penalty (of course). Mikel Arteta had inadvertently caught Michael Carrick’s back leg just inside the penalty area and the midfield had tumbled down, with Cristiano Ronaldo duly dispatching the spotkick into the corner. Until then Tim Howard had put in a heroic performance at his old stomping grounds, and the Blues had their chances to pull level in the second half but the lack of a reliable striking option upfront foiled them.