Another weekend of Everton in action, another game of excitement, agony, and most importantly heart palpitations. Although Everton certainly did well to get a point at Stamford Bridge, Everton have to feel as though they could have taken all three points given their amazing second half display.
As a side note, I feel the penalty against TIMMAY was unjust, and will probably have something about that later this week.
Moving on to the rest of the game though, Everton were fortunate to no concede another goal or two after some fantastic shots by the Chelsea attack, specifically John Terry had a shot rattle off the woodwork during a corner and Howard was called into action a few times to bail out a very shaky defensive effort. The defense did manage to settle down in the second half thankfully, and part of this has to do with David Moyes decision to move Seamus Coleman from the right to left flank. For some reason Everton had a real inability to play the ball up unless it went through Coleman, and asking Seamus Coleman to consistently beat Ashley Cole is a lot like asking Manuel Almunia to play consistent goalkeeping. After the move Coleman did an excellent job getting up the pitch, and I feel Moyes needs to look at keeping Coleman on the left for a bit to see what will happen. This switch also allowed Leighton Baines to get forward more easily, and shows just how effective Baines is when he has a true winger in front of him rather than a creative player like Piennar who moves all around the pitch.
In the center Rodwell and Fellaini did a fairly good job of putting a stop to most of the Chelsea attacks, but their unfamiliarity with each other showed in the first half. Rodwell really did a nice job asserting himself in the second half and was extremely unlucky not to score as one of his shots hit the post and stayed out. As always Tim Cahill was his usual self, and had a beautiful header for an assist to Beckford, and he probably feels like he could have bagged at least one goal on the day.
Of course despite a good result, the troubling points of Everton's season still showed up in this game. For one thing although the goal was a beauty, it did come in pretty much the same way that a majority of goals have this season. A beautiful Baines cross found the head of Cahill who nodded it to Beckford who put it past Cech for the equalizer. With Cahill set to leave for the Asian Cup as early as next week, but rumors suggest he may wait till the new year, Everton will be deprieved of their top goalscorer and aerial threat for a several weeks which means someone like Beckford needs to step up.
Speaking of Beckford, and I know a lot of people including myself are not sold on his ability to be a true goalscoring threat, the man has now scored 2 goals that have garnered points for Everton. Granted he still needs to do a better job of converting his many chances, but no one can say that he doesn't have the ability for this level, he just needs to learn the consistency.
MVP: Beckford, the man who scores the only goal for the team gets the credit on a team that has trouble scoring
Goat: Phil Neville, the skipper was able to return for this match, and while he did have a solid outing overall, his one screwup was costly as it led to a PENNO and then a goal from Drogba. Neville knows he screwed up badly, so at this point it is just time to forget it and move on, and next week will provide plenty of opportunities for redemption.
Next up Everton play Wigan in a game that they simply must take 3 points from. This is the point where Everton need to start beating the teams they should be, not dropping silly points. Until next time COYB!