Fulltime Thoughts - This one was all effort, all heart and all grit from the players, the fans, everyone associated with Everton tonight.
90+17’ - Everton throw, and everyone still looking at Pawson.. there it is! Everton finally win another game, 1-0 with a man down. PHEW!!
90+16’ - Still no sign of the final whistle and Goodison is whistling loudly.
90+14’ - ASM now on the right, beats Gordon for a cross and Godfrey clears for a late corner. Oh boy. It goes over Begovic and off Woods’ head and wide.
Now Gordon comes off, and Townsend is coming on.
Ohhh Alex Iwobi is the chant going around Goodison Park, and now a big hand for Gordon as he comes off.
90+12’ - Andros Townsend comes on for Gordon.. no wait, the substitution has been canceled? What in the world is going on? Who cares though, more time being wasted.
90+10’ - GOALLLLLL!! IWOBI!! Nifty bit of passing there in the opposing third sees Coleman find Iwobi who plays a pass to DCL, and the striker with a deft flick finds Iwobi running into space, and he beats Dubravka at the far post!!
90+6’ - Another ball into the box, Coleman does enough to dissuade ASM from getting a good header on goal.
90+4’ - Joelinton shot, blocked and anywhere they can clear the ball is fine at this point.
90+3’ - Gordon runs with the ball, goes down easily in the box, and Pawson says no penalty, and VAR agrees with him. Tried too hard to sell that one.
90+1’ - Save! Begovic saves low from Willock! The corner goes goalwards and another good fortunate ricochet for the Blues in the melee!
There will be fourteen minutes added on here.
89’ - Cross into the Everton box, poor clearance from Doucs and Bruno’s shot is poor, whew.
88’ - Andre Gomes is on for Richarlison who hobbles off. He was already booked and this is probably for the better.
80’ - More drama! Gordon plays in Richarlison, low cross inches away from a sliding Calvert-Lewin. Now Coleman jinks into the box, beats a couple of men and goes down, everyone baying for a penalty but nothing doing.
Now Saint-Maximin breaks away on a counter and Allan cynically brings him down. It’s a definite yellow, but VAR Stuart Attwell is checking to see if it was serious foul play, with a red card possible as Pawson goes over to review it. The ref cancels his yellow and gives him a red card now. Argh. It was certainly a professional foul, but not really dangerous, but who even knows what anything is any more.
76’ - Dominic Calvert-Lewin is the first sub of the game, on for Gray.
Richy cut down again, on the edge of the box by Krafth this time. Gordon shoves away the Toon, and they will both be booked. Gordon to take the freekick, about twenty yards out just to the left.. through the wall and out for a corner! Oooh!
Gordon again, Joelinton clears. Back towards the box, Gordon shot and save by Dubravka!
Gordon takes it, punched away by the goalie, ball back into the box and the goalie collects.
71’ - Richarlison fouled by Burn again, this time Pawson gives him the freekick. Put into the box, Godfrey heads it back in and put out for a corner. Cleared and put out wide for Gordon to collect and cross back in, high and Gray comes sliding in but it’s well wide. Much better from the Blues, still no changes though.
67’ - Both Coleman and Gray have shots from outside the box and they’re both blocked.
Almiron takes on and beats Godfrey on the Everton left, his cross is met well and Begovic does very well to get a hand to the ball, and there’s a Newcastle player offside too. (He wasn’t offside!)
63’ - Doucoure wins a freekick on the right, put into the box but eventually cleared with an Everton player offside too.
Richarlison showing his frustration here with how Burn has manhandled him today, barges into the player with the ball in the air, and is booked. Freekick headed down by Burn, Krafth takes a shot from distance and Begovic collects.
61’ - Everton a bit better with possession this half, Coleman’s hard work wins him the ball and his dinked cross is collected centrally by Gray, but his shot is wayward.
57’ - Play resumes now, about eight minutes later, with the intruder and a possible accomplice led away.
50’ - This is unique. We have a pitch invader that has now zip-tied themselves to Begovic’s right post! We have half a dozen stewards on now trying to cut the person free, what in the world is going on.
48’ - Half-chance for Willock as a rebound falls to him, he can’t get any wood on it though and Begovic collects.
46’ - Second half underway, no changes for either side.
Halftime Thoughts - The effort is there from Everton, desperately need some quality on the ball though.
45’ - There will be a minute or so added on here.
Gordon wins a corner on the left, almost no time here. Gray inswinger, cleared and that’s the halftime whistle, 0-0 at Goodison.
41’ - Doucoure brings down Willock at the top of the defensive third, and this is dangerous now. Targett’s ball is overhit and Coleman can clear. Gordon fights for the ball and can release a streaking Gray on the left but it’s just too long.
38’ - Allan is more than making up for Doucoure’s off-day here with his battling qualities. Doucs meanwhile continues to look backwards every time he is in possession to Goodison’s chagrin.
32’ - Doucoure struggling here. Gets caught in possession by Almiron and then loses Joelinton who makes a good run behind and wins a corner.
Keane wins the header bravely as Wood crashes into him, foul.
29’ - Richarlison gives away a foul in the Newcastle half, and now Schar takes a loooong freekick and tries to catch Begovic off his line but he gathers.
27’ - The Toon are bossing possession here, 67% of the ball. Almiron is down holding his knee, but is up again.
Newcastle corner, Fraser’s corner is met by Wood, heads it over. Blues living dangerously.
23’ - Richarlison dragged down by Burn as the Blues look to break, and Craig Pawson is not interested.
Now Newcastle win a corner, partly cleared, Almiron’s shot blocked for another corner. Inswinger goes through the six-yard box! Off Holgate for another corner, which is eventually cleared. Nervous moments there.
20’ - Abdoulaye Doucoure barges into Joelinton in the Magpies’ half, his forearm bounces off the Brazilian’s shoulder and catching him in the head. Newcastle pump the freekick into the box but no one follows the flight of the ball and Begovic collects.
19’ - Gordon caught in possession in midfield and Fraser can break though, but Coleman runs his little legs off and saves the day.
15’ - Everton are giving away freekicks in midfield and the visitors are using every opportunity to pump high balls into the box with giants Wood and Dan Burn winning most of their headers. The Toffees should make sure they get to every knockdown, rebound and second ball from those though.
13’ - Everton’s initial enthusiasm is waning a little, and the Toon are seeing quite a bit of the ball now as the hosts resort to long ball.
10’ - Two chances for Newcastle showing they do pose a threat. First a low cross from their right beats Asmir Begovic’s dive and Everton scramble it away, and then a lofted cross is met by Chris Wood but it’s straight at Begovic.
4’ - Very loud now as the Blues win a corner on the right. Demarai Gray takes it, deep, Ben Godfrey’s header straight at Martin Dubravka.
2’ - Everton are in a back-four as Anthony Gordon is barged off the ball into the Newcastle coaching staff. Looks like a 4-2-3-1 with Gordon as the #10, ALex Iwobi on the right and Gray left, but it has been fluid among that trio.
1’ - It’s loud as Allan gets us underway, and the crowd is booing lustily every time a striped shirt touches the ball.
Hopefully the fans bring the noise today because with confidence being as low as it is, the players are going to need anything and everything to push them forward.
Oh my goodness! Is it really a back four?! A 4-3-3, 4-2-3-1 or 4-4-2 though? Jordan Pickford and Donny van de Beek are dropped due to illness, Dominic Calvert-Lewin is on the bench. No Jarrad Branthwaite or Anwar El Ghazi either, we’re back to the two goalies on the bench days.
Outside chance that Iwobi and Godfrey are in as wingbacks and we’re in a 3-4-3, so let’s see.
These previews are getting easier and easier to write. Points, any way Everton can get them. At this point Evertonians will be happy — nay thrilled — to watch 90-plus minutes of Route 1 football if it gets them three points starting tonight against Newcastle, a side that was in a not dissimilar position to the Toffees barely a couple of months ago.
There will be plenty of time after the season is complete for gnashing of teeth, beating of brows and complaining about players not fit to wear the shirt. But for the remaining couple of months, as a football club we all need to do whatever it will take to survive in the Premier League, even if it comes down to the fans to drag these highly-paid professionals
kicking and screaming whimpering and whining out of the relegation zone and into safety.
Injuries and illness will affect both sides today, with Dominic Calvert-Lewin not fully fit yet and Joelinton, Jonjo Shelvey and possibly Joe Willock all needing late fitness tests. Will Frank Lampard stick with his 3-4-3 that he used against the Magpies away in early February, or switch to a 4-3-3? Stick around, let’s find out.
Competition: Premier League Matchday 27
Date and start time: Thursday, March 17th at 12:45 p.m. PT / 3:45 p.m ET / 7:45 p.m. BST
Weather: 50°F/10°C, partly cloudy, 14% chance of precipitation, 10 mph winds
How to Watch/Listen
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The two sides met recently in the Northeast with the Toon’s tails up while Everton’s downward slide was starting to pick up steam and Frank Lampard was still new in the job. The home side showed the better willpower and as the Toffees tired in the second half, Allan Saint-Maximin’s hard running, the vocal home crowd and more mistakes from the Everton players led to a 3-1 loss that propagated the situation the Blues are in now.
The last time Newcastle visited Goodison Park was in January last year, with Newcastle prevailing 2-0 behind closed doors, so the onus will be on the home crowd again to make it as noisy and difficult for the visitors as possible.