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February

February

While January ended on a high note, February started with not only a defeat in the Merseyside derby but also a serious injury to one of Everton’s key players.

Marouane Fellaini had hit peak form as 2010 got underway but the midfielder’s season was abruptly cut short after a challenge by Liverpool’s Sotirios Kyrgiakos.

Scans after the 1-0 loss at Anfield revealed the Belgian needed surgery on his ankle, with his rehabilitation expected last around seven months.

Just four days later league leaders Chelsea visited Goodison Park and the true meaning of Everton’s team spirit was on display.

Despite going behind to a Florent Malouda strike on 16 minutes, the home faithful helped lift the players heads and push on to a famous victory.

Louis Saha netted his 100th English league goal in style by drawing the game level.

The Frenchman heading home to outwit the Chelsea defence from Landon Donovan's excellent 33rd minute corner.

Just before half-time, the striker had the chance to put his side in the lead but Petr Cech denied Saha as he repelled his penalty.

As Everton dominated the second half, the forward made up for his spot-kick miss with a super left-footed half-volley from 18 yards securing David Moyes’ first win over Chelsea.

The following Tuesday, the Blues were back in Europa League action with the visit of Sporting Lisbon.

Moyes’ men looked to be cruising to a victory with goals from Steven Pienaar and Sylvain Distin.

But the defender’s late red card that led to Lisbon's priceless away goal from Miguel Veloso's penalty, meant the win was bittersweet.

Manchester United were the next to arrive at Goodison and with confidence high, the defending Premier League champions were in for a rocky ride.

Dimitar Berbatov looked to start a United rampage with his opener but it only ignited the passion of the Goodison crowd and the Toffees line-up.

Diniyar Bilyaletdinov made sure the Blues were back on level terms with his Goal of the Season before super subs Dan Gosling and Jack Rodwell secured three points.

Gosling made it 2-1 in the 76th minute before Rodwell sent the Blues supporters into a frenzy with his powerful run through midfield before his ice-cool finish made it 3-1.

Sir Alex Ferguson admitted the best side won on the day at Goodison but just five days later Everton crashed out of the Europa League following a 3-0 defeat at Sporting Lisbon.

The month ended with a loss at White Hart Lane. Tottenham ran out 2-1 winners with Landon Donovan missing the chance to level it in the dying minutes of the game.

But February will still be celebrated by fans as the month where Everton claimed the scalps of not only Chelsea and Manchester United, but also taught the Premier League big guns a valuable lesson in team spirit.

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