Under-18s 0-1 West Brom
Everton Under-18s coach Kevin Sheedy said his side showed plenty of encouraging signs despite slipping to an opening day defeat against West Brom on Saturday.
Nathan Oduwa got the only goal of the game for the visitors midway through the first half when he capitalised on a defensive mix-up to lob the ball over stranded goalkeeper Mason Springthorpe.
But Everton took control for large parts of the contest at Finch Farm and Sheedy said it wouldn't have been unjust if his charges had emerged victorious.
"We dominated the game and were by far the best team so we're really pleased with the performance," Sheedy told evertonfc.com. "We're really pleased with the way the players went about it and they were very unfortunate not to get a draw, though even then we'd have been disappointed with the result.
"Duncan [Ferguson] and I have worked hard throughout the summer trying to get the lads to pass the ball out from the back and through midfield and that was definitely one of our best performances since we came back to training.
"If we play like that every week then we'll win more than we lose."
Everton had no shortage of chances to find an equaliser but saw a Chris Long 'goal' rightly ruled out for offside, while Jasper Johns was denied by the inside of the goalframe.
"We created plenty and were a bit unlucky," said Sheedy. "Their keeper has made some good saves - Gethin Jones went one on one and the keeper made a good stop - and then Jasper's seen his shot come back off the post.
"The goal we scored was from an excellent move, the best of the game, but we've seen the video and it was definitely offside.
"Their goal was a poor one defensively but hopefully it's something we can learn from and work on.
"We'll take the positives because it was a really, really good performance."
Everton Under-18s' next game is away at West Ham United on Saturday, August 25.
Everton: Springthorpe, Kenny (Shannon 80), Pennington, Langton, Touray, Johns, Molyneux, Jones, Grant (Williams 70), Charsley (Waring 80), Long