Goals from David Unsworth and Tomasz Radzinski secure a third successive league win at home to Leeds United but the Blues' European hopes are dented the following weekend by a 2-1 defeat at Charlton, despite another McBride goal.
On 12 February Rooney makes a piece of international football history, becoming England's youngest ever player when, at 17 years and 111 days, he plays in the 3-1 friendly defeat by Australia at Upton Park.
Manager David Moyes' efforts in reviving Everton's fortunes are recognised when he collects the Liverpool Echo Sports Personality of the Year award. Moyes says: "It's a special honour, especially when you have just come to a city like Liverpool and had the people take to you. From the first day - it took us 29 seconds to score a goal - I felt that someone was looking after me."
It certainly feels that way in the next match against Southampton. Trailing 1-0, Radzinski heads Everton level inside the last ten minutes and then blasts a magnificent winner in injury time, to leave Goodison Park rocking - and keep Everton in fifth place.