20 For 20: Nearly There
The rundown of our most memorable Premier League games continues.
In a bid to discover the Club's most memorable games of the Premier League's 20 seasons, we asked fans to vote in an exclusive poll on evertonfc.com. Today, our countdown from 20 to one continues with the afternoon the Blues all but assured themselves a shot at Europe's elite...
EVERTON 2-0 Newcastle, 7 May 2005
(Weir 43, Cahill 59)
David Moyes' Everton troops - unfancied but defiant - marched to the brink of Champions League qualification yesterday with a thoroughly deserved victory at Goodison Park.
Goals in each half from David Weir and Tim Cahill mean the Toffees are now odds-on favourites to clinch fourth position in the Premiership table.
Should neighbours Liverpool fail to overcome Arsenal at Highbury today, Everton's right to tackle Europe's elite next season and a first ever involvement in the continent's leading domestic competition will be confirmed.
And who could deny them such a reward?
When a side who last season finished fourth from bottom lost Wayne Rooney, the brightest British hope of a generation - albeit it in return for a fee which could yet reach £30million - the outlook looked bleak.
Rooney's deadline day switch down the M62 to Manchester United left Everton with no time to spend their record-breaking profits.
Instead Moyes was forced to prepare for the campaign ahead with just two new additions - Marcus Bent, a £450,000 arrival from Ipswich Town and Cahill, a player who had shone in the second tier for Millwall but never been tested at the highest level.
Yet a fairytale end is now in sight for the Toffees. And it has much to do with their wizardly Australian.
Already leading through Weir's bullet back-post header, Everton sealed the victory they so dearly craved with half an hour remaining when Cahill collected a wayward shot from Mikel Arteta before craftily beating Shay Given. It was his 12th goal of an undeniably impressive maiden campaign.
The only disappointment here was that Everton’s victory, however dominant, could not seal their European prize outright.
Should their most bitter of rivals fail at Arsenal tomorrow, those of a Blue persuasion on Merseyside are highly unlikely to care.
For a full match report, click here.
Martyn Hibbert Yobo
Manager: David Moyes
- Liverpool lost 3-1 at Arsenal, meaning Everton qualified for the Champions League for the first time in their history.
- The Blues ultimately finished fourth, three points ahead of Liverpool in fifth.
- Liverpool would go on to win the Champions League, beating AC Milan in the final to ensure their own participation in the competition for the following campaign.
For a full 2004/05 fixture list, click here .
"It is terrific just to get it done. I have been told we wouldn't do it - couldn't do it - and all credit must go to the players for sticking at it and proving that they are good players." - David Moyes after Liverpool’s defeat at Arsenal confirms Everton’s qualification for the Champions League
"We've felt that a lot of people have been waiting for us to slip up. We've been in fourth now since September, which is a long time. Around Christmas, people were still doubting us and I think that attitudes only started to change a month ago. That's when people started to take us seriously." - Everton captain, Alan Stubbs
"We have been fourth since September and it is what we deserve. Some people forget that. It is not just about today it is about everything this season. Every time we have been asked to make a step up, we have." – goalscorer Tim Cahill
- Tony Blair becomes the first Labour Prime Minister to lead his party to three election victories.
- Worldwide celebrations commemorate the 60th anniversary of V-E Day, the official end of World War II.
- Elsewhere in the Premier League, Chelsea - already champions - extend their lead at the top of the table with a 1-0 win over Charlton.
- Point guard Steve Nash of the NBA's Phoenix Suns makes history by becoming the first Canadian to win the NBA's MVP award.
- 'Crash', a film about racial and social tensions in LA, hits US cinemas. It later won three Oscars for best picture, best original screenplay and best editing.
- Charity single 'Is This the Way to Amarillo' by Peter Kay and Tony Christie enjoys the last of its seven weeks as the UK's No.1.