Fight back earns controversial point

Everton fought back from two goals down to draw the derby, in a match they should have gone on to win but in the end were fortunate not to lose after poor officiating favoured the Blues in a nail biting finish.

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In a thoroughly entertaining match Everton failed to get going until they were two goals behind. Poor defending and a lack of intensity let Liverpool in not once, but twice. Firstly a Suarez shot deflected off Baines and into the Park End net before a unmarked Suarez doubled Liverpool’s advantage with just 20 minutes on the clock.

The game turned minutes later. A corner was poorly dealt with by Jones in the Liverpool goal and when the ball fell to Osman on the edge of the box, the slightly greying Osman powered a shot low into the bottom corner. Everton were scintillating for the rest of the half and should have turned their dominance into a half time lead. In the end the Blues had to settle for parity, with the brilliant Mirallas combining with Fellaini to create an equalising goal for Naismith.

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The decisive moment in the game followed moments later. Mirallas was again to good for the Liverpool defence, but a poor tackle from Suarez, that warranted a yellow card but went unpunished put the impressive Belgium out for the rest of the game.

Although Everton continued to dominate the second half they lacked the penetration often supplied by Pienaar and Mirallas. The full backs, in particular Coleman, were superb and Osman probed throughout, but Everton were unable to turn possession and territorial advantage into a winning goal.

Everton will be disappointed with a point, but will be relieved that poor officiating saved them at least that. With the game in injury time, a Gerrard free kick was headed on to Suarez who fired past Howard into the goal, only for the linesman to belatedly raise a flag to rule the goal out. Replays showed that the Uruguayan was onside but for once the decision went Everton’s way.

Only a point and fourth spot lost for now, but Everton will fight back, with three points at Fulham important to get the Blues back on track.

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