Well…..where do I start? What a difference a week makes. From the doom and gloom and utter despair of the FA Cup defeat to Wigan, to utter joy and jubilation at a rocking Goodison Park on Saturday against Manchester City.
Firstly credit has to go to a certain Mr Moyes for Saturday’s win. I have been one of his biggest critics after last weeks performance against Wigan but this week I thought his starting eleven was spot on. Starting with Darron Gibson gave us a more balanced look and with Victor Anichebe as the central striker gave us pace and power which the City defence struggled to cope with. We started off at such a high tempo City found it almost impossible to cope with our pace.
We didn’t let City settle or dictate the play, and every player looked hungry, eager and ready for the battle. For once the defence didn’t look as desperate as we have done in the last few months, looking reasonably comfortable considering the fire power City possess in Tevez, Silva and Dzeko to name few along with some brilliant saves from Jan Mucha at crucial points in the game.
From my point of view starting Gibson and sitting him just in from of the back four made City’s playmaker David Silva’s task an impossible one for City. Given Kevin Mirallas had a goal disallowed for very dubious offside it would of been very easy for us to sit back and try to take a point, but credit to them they dug in and kept going until we got the break-through with a rocket from Leon Osman.
Osman has come in for alot of stick for his recent performances, but his 30 yard strike proves he still has the capability and technique that has been lacking for a number of games. Just past the hour mark, we were down to 10 men when Steven Pienaar was shown a second yellow card for a high challenge on Javi Garcia, which I don’t think we could argue with. Looking back at the challenge, it was high and deserved a second yellow card. This just made the task so much harder for us, but the grit and determination that we showed was outstanding. With around 5 minutes to go, City should have been awarded a penalty when Tevez’s shot was handled by Fellaini, but Lee Probert gave a free-kick despite Fellaini being at least two yards inside the box.
Probert is arguably the worst referee in the Premier League. The decisions he gave against Everton were woeful, and i’m not just saying that through blue tinted glasses. For David Platt to come out after the game and say that City didn’t get any decisions is just laughable, yes they should of had a penalty, but so should we when Fellaini was blatantly blocked in the area. Something I didn’t agree with was Moyes’ substitution, bringing off Mirallas and putting on in his place of all people Steven Naismith. The fans making the point that they were not happy with the change spoke volumes with the boo’s ringing out around Goodison Park.
In my opinion Naismith doesn’t add anything to the team and we should be looking to move him on and make a quick profit, if at all possible on him. Although credit to him for making the tackle which started the counter attack for Jelavic’ long over-due goal. My MOTM is a close call, Mucha, Gibson, Anichebe, Coleman and Heitinga all in contention, but my MOTM has to go to Seamus Coleman. For all the extortionate transfer fees that were on that pitch on Saturday it was a young man who cost around £60k who run City’s full back, Kolarov ragged. A great performance from a relatively in-experienced player.