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v Wolfsburg

Thursday 18 September K.O. 20:05



Goodison Park | 27th January 2010 20:00

Everton v Sunderland

Before the game captain Phil Neville urged his side to bounce back quickly from that disappointing FA Cup exit on Saturday.

And it took just six minutes for the Blues to do just that.

Tim Cahill opened the scoring early on before Landon Donovan bagged his first Everton goal to double that lead and ensure the three points before the half time whistle had even blown.

Unlike the Birmingham defeat at the weekend, the Blues started sharply piling pressure onto the visitors right from kick-off.

It wasn't long before the Goodison crowd were rewarded for turning out on a cold evening when Marouane Fellaini crossed the ball into the path of Cahill who headed home on the six minute mark.

Sustained pressure from the Toffees continued as Sunderland struggled to contain the pace of the home side.

Some great link up play between Steven Pienaar and Louis Saha followed.

Sunderland keeper Craig Gordon however saved the Everton striker's effort, the Frenchman chasing his 100th league goal of his career.

David Moyes' side looked by far the more likely to score as the first half went on and supporters didn't have to wait long until the lead was doubled.

Landon Donovan got his first goal for the Club since joining on loan from LA Galaxy in the New Year.

The American international's cooly taken left footed strike made it 2-0 as the chant of USA rang out across Goodison.

Everton celebrate Landon Donovan's goal v Sunderland

There was an early substitution for Sunderland soon after with an injured Kieran Richardson being replaced by Kenwyne Jones but the change failed to boost the Black Cats morale.

Saha headed the ball to Cahill who was 12 yards out in the centre of the penalty area but the Australian's close range effort was caught by Gordon.

Seconds before half time Leighton Baines' free kick from 20 yards out forced a save from Gordon.

The Blues left back having a confident performance playing in the 200th league match of his career.

It's likely David Moyes simply asked for more of the same in the dressing room as the second half again saw Everton come out the blocks fastest much to the pleasure of the boyant crowd.

Sunderland saw an effort from Lorik Cana blaze way over the bar into the Park End to the delight of the Everton fans.

Donovan then had an excellant chance to make it 3-0 but was denied his second goal of the game by a heroic block from George McCartney.

Cahill had slipped the ball passed the Sunderland defence into the path of the pacy American who shot with his left foot, but the Black Cats left-back used all his energy to ensure the ball stayed out of Gordon's net by clearing it off the line.

Steve Bruce could only look on as the clock ticked helpless to turn around his side's misfortunes.

Mikel Arteta continued his return from his long injury lay off by coming on off the bench in place of Donovan with 15 minutes left to go.

Saha was also replaced shortly after by James Vaughan as the Blues continued to dominate the game.

Bolo Zenden looked to have clawed one back though for the visitors in the dying minutes of the game.

The former Liverpool midfielder's left footed strike though was superbly saved by Howard as the Blues keeper soared up to his right to tip the ball round the post.

In extra time Victor Anichebe got his first taste of the Goodison Park atmosphere since injuring his knee in the same fixture as Arteta at Newcastle last February.

The striker replacing Pienaar to gain a few minutes of vital match practise.

Sunderland trudge back up to the North East now without a win in the Premier League since mid November.

For Everton though, it is now eight league matches unbeaten with the impressive Wednesday night display almost erasing the hurt of the FA Cup defeat just four days ago.



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