West Ham must be sick of the sight of Everton.
I don’t mind them though, they are harmless enough even if they do go on about the World Cup at any given oppertunity. They are a decent club (despite their owners) and would probably be my club of choice if I had to pick a London team.
I like Upton Park/The Boleyn Ground too, not as much as the Everton players seem to like it though. It is almost as if no matter how badly they play, they always managed to pull a result out of the bag.
The first half on Saturday was a typical Martinez performance, plenty of posession without much happening up front, and in typical Everton style, they gave away the lead against the run of play when a Ravel Morrison shot deflected off Phil Jagielka, wrong footed Tim Howard and went in a pretty much open goal.
West Ham were in front at half time and this is where the difference between Roberto Martinez and David Moyes really showed. Off went the innefective Jelavic and Steven Naismith and in their place came James McCarthy and making his debut loanee Romelu Lukaku.
Lukaku made an immediate impact and it is plain to see why he is so highly regarded and also why it is such a mental decision by Jose Mourinho to allow him to go out on loan. From my view you could actually see the West Ham team take a step back as he held the ball up well and played in the likes of Mirallas, Barkley and Baines.
The Everton equaliser came from a superbly taken free kick by Leighton Baines after a foul by James Collins on Ross Barkley, who, after a rather poor first half, settled down and like the rest of the Everton team played very well.
James McCarthy gave away a penalty for what I thought at the time would be the West Ham winner when Kevin Nolan made the most of a poor challenge in the box and Mark Noble, whose head looks like a gigantic light bulb with bad hair converted the penalty to put the Hammers 2-1 up.
Then what followed will be talked about for a while as Baines, not content with making a fool of Jussi Jaaskelainen once, did it again, this time on the other side of the goal with a free kick placed not in the “postage stamp” of the goal, in the tiny bit above that, no keeper in the world would have saved it to be fair to the scruffy ex Bolton keeper.
A draw would have perhaps been a fair result, for as poor as West Ham had been, and their goal coming from their only shot on target in the second half, they had worked hard and hassled Everton, which is what teams will do, and as the build up to the West Ham penalty showed, sometimes the defence just need to hit it forward instead of messing around at the back and getting caught.
Lukaku finished off a superb debut by planting a header into the net after a cross by Mirallas, knocking himself out in the process. This is the type of striker Everton have needed for ages. I hope this isn’t the end of Nikica Jelavic though and who knows, he may strike a partnership with Lukaku now he won’t have to do as much of the leg work.
If Romelu keeps this up, it is going to be hard to see him go back to Chelsea, but, football is a funny old game, who knows what might happen, he might get bitten by the bug and make this loan move a permanent one, but I suppose West Brom fans were saying that last season.
As the happy Evertonians filed out of Upton Park the news spread of Southamptons win at Anfield started to come through which raised the volume of the celebrations slightly, that, along with David Moyes’ Manchester United getting a hammering at Man City, made this weeking pretty much as good as it gets football wise.
On Sunday night Everton revealed the three final designs for the new badge for the fans to vote for.
Again, on Twitter there was outrage, not as much as there was for the old new badge and to be fair I quite like the one on the left and I have voted for that, it is similar to the old old one, but that would have done for me in terms of changes.
It’s just a good job the team are doing so well on the pitch!.