Fulltime Thoughts - Everton deciding to bunker down the whole second half can be considered a questionable decision as Leeds dominated, but the Blues did enough to not conceded more than once with Robin Olsen immense between the sticks. 2-1 the final score, and three very welcome points as the Blues climb up to sixth place.
90+5’ - Bamford sets up Roberts for a shot, but it’s well over and there’s the final whistle! Everton win 2-1!!
90+2’ - Ayling’s cross in the box blocked by Godfrey, then his shot is blocked for a corner by Keane.
Corner is cleared but Leeds still have the ball. Commentators update us that both Olsen and Godfrey have been booked as well, likely for timewasting.
90+1’ - King’s first touch is a steal, then runs into his man and is amazed that Oliver does not give him a freekick.
90’ - There will be five plus minutes to play here.
89’ - Raphinha beats Holgate all ends up and the defender tugs him back to get a booking. Leeds freekick from near the goalline, dangerous. Tom Davies on for Sigurdsson now.
Freekick is low and cleared well.
88’ - King is finally on for Iwobi, and Everton are playing keep away right now, holding the ball and moving it around.
85’ - Now Mina gives away an easy freekick deep down Leeds left. Freekick by Raphinha is cleared very well by Mina. Everton break through Doucoure, he plays in DCL and one-on-one with Meslier... saved! DCL tried to slide it by the onrushing goalie and very well-saved by Meslier. King is still not on!
82’ - Joshua King is stripping down, will be on soon to make his Everton debut.
79’ - Everton’s first substitution is going to be Michael Keane for Richarlison. They’re bunkering down now instead of trying to take advantage of a desperate opponent.
75’ - Doucoure fights to win the ball and can play DCL through, who then loses the ball too easily.
72’ - Well-worked move from Leeds sees a cross into the box to Bamford, who beats Digne to it and his looping header goes just over, Olsen was wrong-footed and could only watch.
70’ - Everton struggling again to get the ball out of their own half and hold it in the Leeds half.
66’ - Richarlison charges forward and has a chance to shoot from outside the box, well wide of the far post.
62’ - THREE HUGE SAVES FROM OLSEN!! Leeds piling on the pressure and have three cracks at goal, twice through Harrison and once from Raphinha, and he beats them all away.
60’ - Much much better from the Blues in the last few minutes, holding the ball and sustaining possession. Substitutes soon?
57’ - Iwobi fouled in the middle and Digne’s freekick into the box is the first sustained possession in the second half. Embarrassing.
On replay, that freekick went off Ayling’s arm but Oliver didn’t see it and apparently neither did VAR, that should have been a penalty, as would the foul on Iwobi.
54’ - Mina now concedes a freekick outside the box on the right, with the Blues just ball-watching here. Raphinha’s low freekick is cleared by DCL. Everton yet to show up in the second half, not strung together more than two passes yet.
52’ - Mina has had an excellent game so far until the Leeds goal. His hesitation to clear the ball first time started the bad sequence, not the first time he’s done that either.
48’ - Ball bounces in the Everton box, Mina leaves it for Holgate who can’t clear under pressure from Bamford and Raphinha pounces, shooting to the far post between Godfrey’s legs, nothing Olsen can do and it’s 2-1, just like that. Grrrr.
46’ - Everton get us underway in the second half.
Halftime Thoughts - The Blues have done well today to mostly keep Leeds in front of them, defending resolutely, but it’s the attack that has looked dangerous on the break. Good gameplan, executed perfectly so far.
45+2’ - Gomes’ hand catches Dallas and he goes down like he’s been hit by a ton of bricks. Michael Oliver is not interested, and there’s the halftime whistle.
45’ - Sigurdsson wins a freekick deep down the left. Digne swings it in, but it’s cleared.
There will be two minutes added on.
41’ - Blues win a corner on the left. Sigurdsson swings it in, Godfrey heads it on and a flying DCL meets it to score! 2-0!!
37’ - Richarlison botches his tackle and Alioski can cross the ball unhindered, Mina does well to beat Bamford to it.
35’ - Now Iwobi looks to get on the end of a bouncing ball in the box, and has the front of his shirt tugged and he goes down, but Michael Oliver is not interested. No VAR either.
32’ - Holgate rushes forward and is looking for a foul or a corner, but gets neither.
29’ - Godfrey with a lung-busting run (much like Doucoure a couple of minutes ago) almost results in a chance with a cross coming into the box that is cut out by a defender almost right to Sigurdsson.
27’ - Ooh! Leeds try to play out and misplace a pass, straight to Richarlison outside the box, he miscontrols and then falls down and the hosts can clear. Could have been something.
25’ - Iwobi concedes a needless freekick on the right. Phillips corner is low, headed on by Strujik and Olsen has to parry it over. The corner is partly cleared, another corner.
Phillips again from the Blues left, deep and cleared by Mina.
21’ - Been all Leeds since the goal. Everton look happy to keep their defensive shape and not let Leeds get behind them. The rain all day has made for a slick pitch and the ball is zipping about and quite a few players are likely regretting their choice of studs tonight.
19’ - Digne concedes a corner. Raphinha sprays it outside the box and Alioski hits it first-time! Post! Flies through the box on Olsen’s right, the goalie is at full stretch and it comes off the base of the post and is cleared. Whew.
16’ - Holgate blows past Harrison on the right and is hauled down, the defender gets a yellow card for his troubles. Sigurdsson swings it into the box, meets a Leeds head first and it’s cleared.
Ayling’s cross into the box is met by Bamford who gets to it before Mina, but his header is over.
12’ - Shot from Klich is parried away by Olsen for a corner. Mina does well to head out for another corner. Low corner and Ayling heads way over and wide.
11’ - Shot! Everton do well to hold up the ball on the right and then regain possession, leading to a shot from distance by DCL, but it’s low and weak and Meslier gathers.
9’ - GOAL!! From nowhere! A fantastic ball from Gomes springs Digne on the left, and his low cross is met perfectly by the one Everton player running into the box.. Gylfi Sigurdsson! Wow!
8’ - Everton are seeing plenty of the ball, but not necessarily creating much going forward.
3’ - Looks like a 4-3-3. Godfrey is in as the left-sided centrehalf, captain du jour Gylfi Sigurdsson, Andre Gomes and Abdoulaye Doucoure are the midfielders, with Alex Iwobi as the right-sided forward.
1’ - Leeds get us underway. A quick throw down the Everton left sees Raphinha running in on goal and Ben Godfrey has to clear for a corner.
Corner is headed clear by Dominic Calvert-Lewin. Focus boys!
The lineups are out, and I guess Josh King is eligible to play after all? He’s on the bench as Everton make four changes.
If you thought Everton have a miserable record playing away at Old Trafford, the Emirates Stadium (and Highbury before that), White Hart Lane, Stamford Bridge and Anfield, then you probably haven’t looked at the Blues record at Elland Road. It makes for depressing reading, even if you consider that Leeds haven’t been in the top flight for about 16 years in the Premier league era. Basically, Everton have one win at Leeds United in the last 69 years, or in slightly more palatable terms, one league win in the last 38 games.
When Marcelo Bielsa’s side visited Goodison Park a couple of months ago, they controlled the midfield and passed us to death, and it was a bit of a miracle the Blues lost only 1-0 from a late goal. If the Toffees show up with the same mindset from last weekend’s limp 2-0 defeat against Newcastle, then we could well pull a Southampton and find ourselves buried under an avalanche of goals.
That said, Carlo Ancelotti looked quite irritated when asked about Everton’s Saturday performance during his pre-match press conference, so you know he’s had a word or hundred with the players. Whether they can lift themselves up and pull Everton back up into European contention, we’ll have to see.
Competition: Premier League Matchday 20
Date and start time: Wednesday, February 3rd at 11:30 a.m. PT / 2:30 p.m ET / 7:30 p.m. BST
Stadium: Elland Road, Leeds, England, United Kingdom
Capacity: 37,890 [Behind closed doors]
Weather: 40°F/4°C, light rain, 72% chance of precipitation, 5 mph winds
How to Watch/Listen
TV: Peacock - United States; BT Sport 3 - United Kingdom; DAZN - Canada, beIN Sports HD 8, SuperSport Premier League ROA, SuperSport Maximo, RMC Sport 3
Radio: evertontv, BBC Radio
Gamethread: Live blog above starting one hour before game time
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Olsen, Holgate, Godfrey, Mina, Digne, Doucoure, Gomes, Sigurdsson, Iwobi, Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin
Subs: Virginia, Keane, Coleman, Nkounkou, Delph, Davies, Bernard, James, King
Meslier, Ayling, Cooper, Struijk, Alioski, Phillips, Dallas, Klich, Raphinha, Harrison, Bamford
Subs: Casilla, Roberts, Costa, Hernandez, Davis, Cresswell, Shackleton, Jenkins, Huggins
Referee: Michael Oliver VAR: Chris Kavanagh
The Blues hosted Leeds in late November, losing 1-0 to an excellent Raphinha shot catching Jordan Pickford off guard. Everton last visited Elland Road during the 2012-13 season, losing in the League Cup Third Round fixture 2-1, with Sylvain Distin grabbing the only Everton goal.