A date that Everton haven’t played a match on since 2009, April 5 has its fair share of highs and lows for the Blues.
Today, we look back at one of few brighter days for one of Everton’s forgotten men, and two dramatic victories deep into FA Cup runs:
1966 - Second Man City replay ends in victory for Catterick’s men
With the league campaign of 1966-67 petering out into mid-table mediocrity, Everton’s saving grace that year was their journey in the FA Cup. Having seen off Sunderland, Bedford and Coventry, next up for Harry Catterick’s men would be Second Division Manchester City.
After two goalless draws between the sides, first at Maine Road and then at Goodison Park three days later, it proved third time lucky for Everton, seeing off Joe Mercer’s team 2-0 at Wolverhampton Wanderers’ Molineux Stadium thanks to goals late in the first half from Derek Temple and 22-goal man Fred Pickering.
It set up a semi-final date with Manchester United and marked the Blues’ first entrance into the FA Cup’s penultimate stage since 1953.
1986 - Sharpy sees Everton past Sheff Wed semi
That 1966 semi would see a 1-0 victory for Everton over United, before becoming FA Cup winners for the third time by beating Sheffield Wednesday 3-2 in the final.
And they would cross paths with the Owls in this competition again in 1986, meeting at Villa Park for the Blues’ third successive FA Cup semi-final.
This was another tight, nail-biting affair, with Everton, putting their hot pursuit of league leaders Liverpool on the back burner for 90 minutes, breaking the deadlock just three minutes into the second half. Alan Harper, a first-half substitute for the injured Trevor Steven, kept his cool to lob the out-rushing Wednesday keeper Martin Hodge from the edge of the area, sending the travelling Toffees behind the goal into a state of sheer ecstasy.
But their joy was short-lived, as Wednesday forward Carl Shutt nodded home the equaliser only three minutes after Harper’s opener. Indeed, it took extra time to eventually separate the two sides, Graeme Sharp’s fierce volley from Paul Bracewell’s piercing cross enough to book Everton’s place at Wembley. Their opponents? Only that lot across Stanley Park.
2009 - Jô at the double as Blues thrash Wigan
Everton had another FA Cup semi-final with Manchester United to look forward to in 2009, but two weeks prior to that Wembley clash, David Moyes’ side needed to return to winning ways after defeat at lowly Portsmouth to stay on track for European qualification.
What followed was the Blues’ most emphatic victory of the season in all competitions, as Manchester City flop Jô netted his fourth and fifth goals of his loan spell at Goodison either side of half-time, with Marouane Fellaini and Leon Osman also on target in a 4-0 drubbing of Wigan Athletic.
Jô would return on a season-long loan the following season, too, but that was cut short after being suspended by Moyes for a breach of discipline and a paltry two goals in 24 outings. A decade and seven clubs later, the Brazilian, now 33, currently plies his trade in Japan with Nagoya Grampus, Arsène Wenger’s former club.