Next Match:

Ticket Info

v Wolfsburg

Thursday 18 September K.O. 20:05

2

1

Goodison Park | 1st February 2014 15:00 | Attendance - 39469

Everton v Aston Villa

Goals from Steven Naismith and Kevin Mirallas helped Everton come from behind to defeat Aston Villa and move up to fifth in the Barclays Premier League table.

The Blues looked to be heading for a miserable afternoon at Goodison Park when Leandro Bacuna put the visitors ahead midway through the first half.

But substitute Naismith levelled with 15 minutes remaining, before Mirallas stole victory with his second spectacular free-kick in as many home games.

And there was more good news for the Toffees, as Tottenham's 1-1 draw at Hull City allowed them to leapfrog the Londoners - their next opponents - and go back within a place and a point of the top four.

Looking to move on quickly from the disappointment of Tuesday's derby defeat at Liverpool, manager Roberto Martinez was able to welcome back defender Sylvain Distin as one of three changes.  

His tweaks also saw a first Everton start for Aiden McGeady, while Leon Osman was recalled after having to settle for a substitute appearance at Anfield.

And the hosts would have been buoyed by their start, one which saw new boy McGeady come within a lick of paint of notching his maiden Everton goal.

Taking up possession on the angle of the box, the Republic of Ireland international checked inside Ryan Bertrand, only to see his curling shot ping back off the post with goalkeeper Brad Guzan rooted to his line.

With a smart drag here and a fancy flick there, McGeady continued to earn the oohs and aahs of a sell-out Goodison crowd.

Leon Osman 494Influential midfielder Leon Osman is marshalled closely by several Aston Villa defenders.

However, there was little else coming from either side to warm a bitterly cold Merseyside afternoon.

Everton probed, Villa defended - then, on 34 minutes, the visitors landed a sucker punch to take the lead.

Barkley was dispossessed inside his own half by Fabian Delph, and after latching on to the loose ball, Bacuna exchanged passes with Christian Benteke before slotting calmly past Tim Howard.

At half-time, Everton in the Community announced they had succeeded in their bid to raise £1million in their 25th anniversary year.

Supporting the Club's wide-reaching charity was the designated 'theme' of the day, with a samba band, dance troupe and local singer Jennifer Jewell all playing their part to say thank you to those who had helped conquer the ambitious 12-month target.

In the dressing room though, Martinez had decisions to make. And having watched Ross Barkley struggle through the closing moments of the first half, the midfielder - only recently back from a broken toe - was replaced by Steven Pienaar.

Naismith Steven Naismith celebrates after drawing the Blues back level.

Whatever the Spaniard said to his players, it seemed to spark them to life.

Indeed, soon after seeing his own dangerous pull back flash across an empty six-yard box, Mirallas - Everton's front man in the absence of the injured Romelu Lukaku and Lacina Traore - was frustrated not to get on the end of a dangerous delivery from Man of the Match Leighton Baines.

Immediately Osman missed a decent chance after stealing the ball from the dithering Ashley Westwood, the midfielder - the star of Everton's 2-0 win at Villa Park in October - dragging his shot across Guzan and wide of the target.

The Blues continued to thump loudly at the door, a reality best illustrated by Villa boss Paul Lambert withdrawing striker Grant Holt on the hour mark and adding Karim El Ahmadi as an extra man in midfield.

Martinez - in trademark positive fashion - responded by replacing right-back John Stones with forward Naismith.

It would prove a masterstroke.

Mirallas WinnerKevin Mirallas wheels away after scoring what would prove to be the match-winning goal.

Almost immediately the switch fashioned a near-miss, though on that occasion it was the giant frame of Benteke planting a header within inches of his own goal right in front of the Glwadys.

Yet the equaliser did duly arrive - and it was expertly worked by the hosts.

Barry played the ball into Pienaar, his neat flick took Villa's centre-halves out of the equation, and Naismith nicked in to calmly stab past Guzan and into the bottom corner.

With 15 minutes on the clock, the momentum was all Everton's.

And when Ciaran Clark was pulled up for a foul 30-yards out with four minutes to go, Mirallas made certain he paid the full price.

Like against Norwich, it was him or Baines. Like against Norwich, it sailed high into the top corner, leaving Guzan helpless.

It was enough to secure win number 11 of the season - and Everton's 300th in the Premier League.

By Adam Clark

StubHub

StubHub

Everton Season Ticket holders can list their seat for any Barclays Premier League game that they can’t attend on StubHub, the Official Ticket Marketplace

Find out more
Match Highlights Archive

Match Highlights Archive

Watch highlights from classic and recent Everton games on evertontv.

Find out more
2014/15 Season Tickets

2014/15 Season Tickets

All the information you could need about securing your seat at Goodison.

Find out more

This site uses cookies. Click here to learn more.