Fulltime Thoughts - “A win is a win is a win”. When you have to say that after a game, that tells you all you need to know about how things went. We’re in the hat for the next round, now let’s never speak of this again.
120+3’ - There’s the final whistle, and Everton have won 2-1. They huffed and puffed for most of the game, but took advantage of the chances they had to squeak through. All credit to Rotherham who acquitted themselves very well against a mostly-poor Everton side.
119’ - Everton have largely been able to keep the ball away from the dangerous areas, but now with seconds left Doucoure gives a freekick just inside the Everton half. Deep ball lobbed into the box, Olsen gratefully claims.
Three minutes added on.
113’ - Another fortunate bounce allows Vassell to get the ball in the box and he tries to cut wide and shoot, Mina’s diving block gets the job done. All hands to the pump here now.
111’ - Rotherham are making a real go of it as Everton have again retreated into the their shell with no out ball when they do get it. Olsen - not for the first time - booms his goalkick and it goes out at the corner flag.
106’ - Underway again. George Hirst is the first player to be booked today, his elbow flying into Yerry Mina’s face during an aerial challenge. The medics are on, the Colombian is still down. After a couple of minutes he rises and will continue, big bandage in place around his forehead.
Halftime, extra time - Everton (Tosun, Doucoure) 2-1 Rotherham (Olosunde)
105+4’ - What a change in mentality in the first half of extra time. Whatever Carlo said at the break, bottle it up and use it again and again.
After saying there will be five or more minutes added on, the ref blows for the break after less than four.
104’ - Nkounkou with a delicious low cross that slices through the six-yard box. Tosun and two defenders all go for it and all remain on the ground in a big heap.
Defender Angus McDonald seems to be in a very bad way here. Looked like his head connected with Tosun’s knee as they all collided. The player is finally up and will continue, there’ll be more than five minutes added on here.
102’ - Coleman cuts in and has a pop at goal, Blackman parries away for a corner on the right. It’s cleared and Rotherham look to break but Bernard cuts in and ends that.
99’ - Bet Olsen didn’t think he would be facing the sun again today, but yet here we are.
97’ - Much much better from the Blues here are they look to put this one to bed. First a neat passing move allows a Bernard shot that comes back off the post. The rebound falls to Coleman whose shot is poor and wide.
Then Tosun sets off on a run and has a chance to shoot, also wide.
95’ - James comes off, looking uncomfortable and it’s Niels Nkounkou who is coming on. That’s all the Toffees subs for today.
93’ - GOAL! Everton lead, legitimately this time! Doucoure makes it 2-1 after a peach of a ball from James, not unlike the first goal really. Sumptuous pass, delectable finish.
91’ - Underway again. No changes for the Blues, goalscorer Olosunde for Rotherham goes off.
End of Regulation Time, Everton 1 (Tosun) - Rotherham 1 (Olosunde)
90+4’ - Coleman concedes a late corner. Oh boy. Coleman clears the low corner.
Now the Blues break and win a late corner of their own on the left. Sigurdsson takes, goalie punches it away and we are going to extra time. Just what Everton needed, more minutes to play <eye roll>.
90+3’ - Everton holding the ball in the Rotherham half, but Godfrey is caught offside and that ends.
90’ - It’ll be about four minutes added on here.
87’ - GOAL! Nope, disallowed.
A James freekick into the box is met very well by Tosun and he flicks it into the net. VAR reviews the call and yes the Turkish forward was marginally offside, a matter of his hairline really.
84’ - Sigurdsson freekick finds Bernard. Good cross into the box, Mina’s backwards header is met by Tosun but Blackman gathers.
82’ - Coleman wins a corner on the right after a lovely pass from James. Corner is cleared well.
James finds Coleman again, and his cross into the box is met by Doucoure, but the header is wayward.
79’ - Everton look tired here, with Rotherham looking more and more physically imposing as the game has gone on.
75’ - Andre Gomes has somehow stayed on the pitch despite his poor showing.
For those who needed a reminder, the FA Cup rules call for extra time if the game is still tied after ninety minutes, and then a penalty shootout as needed.
72’ - Really hard to see where an Everton goal is going to come from, despite all the substitutes.
Sigurdsson freekick results in a James shot that is blocked for a corner. First corner of the game for the Blues, that’s how awful we’ve been. Corner of course comes to nothing.
70’ - Second horrible mispass from Doucoure creates a chance for Rotherham, but substitute Darius Vassell’s shot is wayward. Whew.
James back on the pitch after taking a full-blooded ball to the face.
66’ - As expected, Digne will not finish out the game. He comes off for Yerry Mina as Ben Godfrey will slide over. Gylfi Sigurdsson also on now, with Davies going off, not a second too late.
62’ - Olosunde again skips by Digne and creates a chance for Harding whose shot is poor. Just a reminder that Everton play Wolves on Tuesday, and Adama Traore has got to be laughing already.
60’ - The Blues are belatedly awake, and shots by Gomes and James have been blocked.
Changes coming up, with Bernard and Abdoulaye Doucoure coming on, Gordon and Iwobi go off. That quality and effort (respectively) have been sorely missed today.
55’ - It was coming and there’s the equalizer! Olosunde has been Rotherham’s best payer, and he’s pulled his side level. A fortunate rebound to him from a Davies miskick and he tucks the ball into the far post. Game on, 1-1.
51’ - The next goal could decide this game. And the Blues are continuing to give the Millers opportunities to drop the ball in the box.
49’ - Everton continuing to give the ball away in the middle and make things harder for themselves.
James gets a ball in the middle, it lands up with Iwobi who sidesteps a challenge and shoots, but it’s wide of the far post.
46’ - Carlo is going to have the boys play through this phase, no changes at the break.
Olosunde speeds away past Digne like he wasn’t there, and there’s contact with Gomes in the box, the American player goes down but Stuart Atwell says no penalty!
Halftime Thoughts - Everton lead 1-0, having started the better side. However rusty legs have showed and the Blues have lost their way since then, with Olsen the only reason Everton still lead.
45’ - There will be a minute added on, and have to say Everton will be the happier of the two sides the break is here, there is some regathering that needs to happen.
43’ - US international Matthew Olosunde skips past a despairing Gordon tackle and requires Digne to intervene for a corner. It’s a low corner and the Blues can’t clear, a shot from distance goes wide though Crooks was very close to getting a touch on it that could have taken the ball anywhere.
39’ - Finally a well-worked move and creates a chance. James takes the ball and finds Coleman on the far right. He plays a give-and-go with Iwobi before crossing low early, and Tosun gets a touch on it that takes the ball just past the far post. Ancelotti still very vocal.
36’ - A promising 4-on-4 break for the Blues dies when James tries to slice a through pass and it’s cut out. He’s looked very rusty today too.
34’ - The Millers have their tails up, having pretty much had the best chances and controlled the play since the Everton goal.
Lindsay shot from distance and Olsen does very well to save the volley low, but the offside flag is up.
31’ - Digne has looked out of sorts - he’s been out of football for nearly two months - and Rotherham are just strolling down the Everton left. Another corner for the visitors, cleared this time.
Long ball into the box and it almost falls for Ohikwe and Olsen has to come out smartly to clear. Yeesh.
29’ - Despite all the talent on the pitch the Blues have just lost their way right now, getting outworked by the Championship side.
28’ - Crooks beats Godfrey and Keane has to intervene to concede a corner on the Everton right. Coleman (!) rises highest and concedes another corner.
Low corner and Crooks beats Iwobi to the ball, skims the top of the bar and goes over. Whew.
26’ - Everton have been pretty untidy with the ball for the last few minutes and almost pay for it. Rotherham shot is saved well low by Robin Olsen, the shot from the rebound is blocked well by Seamus Coleman and then Olsen has to make another save from a full-blooded shot outside the box.
The corner is taken short and not cleared, and eventually Olsen comes out to claim the cross into the box. Very shaky from the Blues.
20’ - Freekick from the centre circle is the first chance for Rotherham to put the ball in the box, but the Blues clear the initial ball. Another ball falls to Michael Ohikwe who swivels and shoots from the top of the box but is wild.
Now Crooks cuts through the middle and finds Smith for a shot, but that is wild too. Rotherham are taking advantage of the Everton midfield right now.
19’ - The Everton players are looking right into the low winter sun when they are in their own half, and the glare is making things a bit tricky for them.
16’ - Lindsay makes a good run but is blocked out well by Godfrey. First outing at centrehalf for Godfrey since joining Everton. Credit to the visitors who are doing well passing the ball around, not allowing the early goal to bring them down.
14’ - Alex Iwobi with a cross from the right, way overhit. Hmm, his crossing is not improving.
11’ - Tom Davies tries to play a ball through the centre again but it goes through to the goalie this time.
8’ - Goal Everton! Gordon gets the ball in the middle and looks up to see Tosun making a run, threads a perfect ball through and the Turkish striker just has to dink the ball over the onrushing goalie to put the Blues ahead. 1-0.
7’ - James has been dropping way deep right now, even behind Gomes really.
4’ - Another chance as Andre Gomes steadies himself in the box but his shot is poor and rolls tamely wide.
4-2-3-1 as I can see, with Gordon left, James central and Iwobi right.
3’ - Anthony Gordon with a screaming run into the box and his initial shot is blocked! He tries another shot but it’s scuffed and rolls tamely towards the goalie Blackman.
1’ - And we’re underway at Goodison!
There go the sirens and the players are now out on the pitch - it’s a bright and sunny afternoon, but chilly too, just above freezing temperature.
The lineups are out, and as promised by Ancelotti, it's a much changed team. Only one goalie on the bench, and youngster Ernie Simms on it too. The big news of course is that Lucas Digne is not only fit again, but also starting, though it's unlikely he'll play the full ninety.
Everton start another annual campaign to finally end the silverware drought at Goodison Park with an FA Cup Third Round clash against Championship stragglers Rotherham United in Saturday’s early fixture.
In his pre-match comments yesterday manager Carlo Ancelotti already indicated that he would be resting a number of key players, but with James Rodriguez, Lucas Digne (surprise!) and Alex Iwobi all fully fit and expected to start surely the Blues should have enough quality to win this game, even with Cenk Tosun starting up top.
The Millers are sitting one point off the bottom of the league table, but do have a couple of games in hand that could allow them to climb up. Paul Warne’s side have one win in their last five and will be looking for a big giantkilling performance from his players to advance to the next round.
Competition: FA Cup Third Round
Date and start time: Saturday, January 9th at 4:00 a.m. PT / 7:00 a.m ET / 12:00 p.m. BST
Capacity: 39,572 (Behind closed doors)
Weather: 36°F/2°C, partly cloudy, 9% chance of precipitation, 5 mph winds
How to Watch/Listen
TV: N/A - United States; BT Sport 2 (red button, screen 4) - United Kingdom; DAZN - Canada, beIN Sports 2, beIN Sports MAX 4, SuperSport Premier League ROA, SuperSport Maximo, ESPN 2 Colombia
Live stream: ESPN+, BT Sport App, BTSport.com, ESPN Play Caribbean, beIN SPORTS CONNECT, DStv Now, RUSH
Gamethread: Live blog above starting one hour before game time
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Olsen, Coleman, Godfrey, Keane, Digne, Iwobi, Gomes, Davies, Gordon, Rodriguez, Tosun
Subs: Lossl, Branthwaite, Doucoure, Bernard, Holgate, Mina, Nkounkou, Sigurdsson, Simms
Blackman, Harding, MacDonald, Ihiekwe, Wood, Olosunde, Wiles, Barlaser, Lindsay, Crooks, Smith
Subs: Johansson, Vickers, Jones, Tilt, Clarke, Miller, Jozefzoon, Vassell, Hirst
Ref: Stuart Attwell VAR: Paul Tierney
The two sides met quite recently, in the early rounds of the Carabao Cup in 2018 with Marco Silva leading his side to a 3-1 win over the Millers. Gylfi Sigurdsson had opened the scoring for the Blues early, with Dominic Calvert-Lewin grabbing a second. However a late goal from a corner gave the visitors hope before the Everton striker scored his second of the game to snuff out Rotherham.