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Page last updated at 15:57 GMT, Saturday, 16 April 2011 16:57 UK

Everton   2 - 0   Blackburn

Leon Osman celebrates
Everton celebrate Leon Osman's 54th minute opener

By Michael Da Silva

Second half strikes from Leon Osman and Leighton Baines ensured that Everton beat struggling Blackburn to move to within a point of rivals Liverpool.

Everton, unbeaten in the league since 13 February, took the lead in the 54th minute when Osman collected a short corner and drove home a low effort.

Baines then doubled Everton's lead from the penalty spot after Seamus Coleman was upended by Phil Jones.

The defeat leaves Blackburn just two points clear of the relegation zone.

And, having not won since January, Steve Kean's side are set for an anxious run-in with games against Manchester City and Manchester United still to come.

At a sunny Goodison Park, Blackburn were fortunate not to be behind as early as a minute into the game.

Fantastic Osman made the difference - Moyes

A long ball from Tony Hibbert was inadvertently headed into Jermaine Beckford's path by Jermaine Jones, but Beckford rushed his shot and sliced high and wide from an acute angle.

It was a big miss for Everton who, despite dominating possession, lacked the imagination and attacking threat usually provided by injured pair Mikel Arteta and Tim Cahill.

Everton were dealt yet another injury blow when Johnny Heitinga limped off after just 15 minutes holding his hamstring.

Despite being passengers for much of a flat first half, Blackburn looked bright on the counter-attack and their 20-year-old debutant Ruben Rochina, a January signing from Barcelona, showed promise with a number of neat touches.

The youngster orchestrated the away side's best move of the first half with a driving run from midfield that opened Everton up, but the move broke down when Santa Cruz's cross for Brett Emerton was intercepted.

Everton displayed some much needed urgency after the break and, after the bright Magaye Gueye fired just over and Leighton Baines saw a long-range effort brush the outside of the post, the hosts punished Blackburn for their sluggish start to the second half.

A short corner to Leon Osman caught Blackburn cold and the midfielder sidestepped the challenge of Rochina and fired low inside the far post, with the ball taking a significant deflection off defender Christopher Samba.

Everton almost doubled their lead two minutes later when Gueye fired into the side netting with his left-foot after a poor clearance by Michael Salgado.

The hosts were far more assured than their jaded opponents throughout the second half and it was only a matter of time before they doubled their lead in the 75th minute.

The strike came courtesy of Baines, who powered his penalty beyond Paul Robinson after Phil Jones' rash lunge on substitute Coleman.

Blackburn, devoid of imagination in attack, could have halved Everton's lead but Morten Gamst Pederson was guilty of a glaring miss when he dragged his shot wide from 12 yards after a mix up between Baines and Phil Jagielka.

Self-belief not shattered - Kean

That proved to be Blackburn's best chance of the game as the visitors sorely missed their talismanic forward Junior Hoilett.

Osman spurned a good opportunity to make it 3-0 when he miscued from 15 yards, but it was academic given Blackburn's ineptitude throughout.

The win sees Everton narrow the gap on sixth-placed Liverpool to one point, but leaves Blackburn with a battle on their hands if they are to avoid relegation.


Everton manager David Moyes:

"It was a great result and a good performance; we were comfortable today.

"Last season we had only two defeats in the last 24 games and this season is similar. We have a momentum at the moment and are playing well. We are finishing the season very strongly."

"The start we have had to the season may not allow us to finish above Liverpool, but we'll try."


Blackburn manager Steve Kean:

"I thought there were massive positives for us in the first half so we're disappointed by the manner of the goals we've conceded. But we'll move on.

"Our away statistics aren't great but our belief is not shattered. Our team spirit has been called upon but we've got that in abundance.

"We must try to build some momentum, starting with our next game against Manchester City."

Live text and stats

 

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Barclays Premier League

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Everton 2-0 Blackburn FT
(HT 0-0)
  • Osman 54
  • Baines (pen) 75

    Everton

    Substitutes

    Blackburn

    Substitutes

    Ref: FriendAtt: 35,857
    EVERTON
    BLACKBURN

    Possession

    • Everton 52%
    • Blackburn 48%

    Attempts on target

    • Everton 7
    • Blackburn 2

    Attempts off target

    • Everton 10
    • Blackburn 2

    Corners

    • Everton 10
    • Blackburn 1

    Fouls

    • Everton 9
    • Blackburn 17
    • Final Result
    • Full Time
    • 90:00+4:08 The referee brings the game to a close.
    • 90:00+3:37 Jason Roberts concedes a free kick for a foul on Phil Jagielka. Tim Howard restarts play with the free kick.
    • 90:00+3:12 Brett Emerton takes a shot. Tim Howard makes a save.
    • 90:00+2:34 Christopher Samba takes a shot. Save by Tim Howard.
    • 90:00+1:16 Unfair challenge on Tim Howard by Benjani Mwaruwari results in a free kick. Free kick taken by Tim Howard.
    • 90:00+0:39 Booking Jack Rodwell is shown a yellow card for unsporting behaviour.
    • 90:00+0:35 Jack Rodwell concedes a free kick for a foul on Jason Roberts. Paul Robinson restarts play with the free kick.
    • 89:59 Leighton Baines takes a outswinging corner from the left by-line to the near post.
    • 89:47 Corner taken by Leighton Baines.
    • 89:15 Apostolos Vellios takes a shot. Save by Paul Robinson.
    • 87:26 Effort from the edge of the penalty box by Leon Osman goes wide of the right-hand upright.
    • 86:20 Outswinging corner taken by Leighton Baines, clearance made by Christopher Samba.
    • 84:37 Substitution Apostolos Vellios on for Jermaine Beckford.
    • 83:45 Foul by Michel Salgado on Sylvain Distin, free kick awarded. Tim Howard restarts play with the free kick.
    • 82:30 Phil Jagielka fouled by David Dunn, the ref awards a free kick. Tim Howard takes the direct free kick.
    • 81:06 Diniyar Bilyaletdinov gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Brett Emerton. David Dunn takes the direct free kick.
    • 80:17 Substitution Benjani Mwaruwari is brought on as a substitute for Ruben Rochina.
    • 79:03 Jermaine Jones concedes a free kick for a foul on Jack Rodwell. Tim Howard restarts play with the free kick.
    • 78:21 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Leon Osman by Phil Jones. Phil Neville restarts play with the free kick.
    • 76:39 Morten Gamst Pedersen has an effort at goal from deep inside the area missing to the right of the goal.
    • 76:04 Leon Osman takes a shot. Phil Jones gets a block in.
    • 74:11 The assist for the goal came from Seamus Coleman.
    • 74:10 GOAL - Leighton BainesEverton 2 - 0 Blackburn Leighton Baines scores a power penalty. Everton 2-0 Blackburn.
    • 72:58 Booking Booking for Phil Jones for unsporting behaviour.
    • 72:32 Penalty awarded for a foul by Phil Jones on Seamus Coleman.
    • 70:22 Free kick taken by Phil Jagielka.
    • 70:22 Booking The referee shows Ruben Rochina a yellow card.
    • 69:49 Ruben Rochina gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Tony Hibbert.
    • 66:58 Substitution Gael Givet goes off and Morten Gamst Pedersen comes on.
    • 65:32 Seamus Coleman has an effort at goal from just outside the box which goes wide of the left-hand post.
    • 64:26 Substitution Magaye Gueye leaves the field to be replaced by Seamus Coleman.
    • 63:31 The referee blows for offside against Jason Roberts. Tim Howard restarts play with the free kick.
    • 62:52 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on David Dunn by Magaye Gueye. Free kick taken by Paul Robinson.
    • 60:37 Substitution (Blackburn) makes a substitution, with Jason Roberts coming on for Roque Santa Cruz.
    • 56:51 Free kick awarded for a foul by Phil Jones on Leon Osman. Leighton Baines crosses the ball from the free kick left-footed from right wing, clearance made by Christopher Samba.
    • 56:34 Martin Olsson handles the ball and concedes a free kick. Phil Jagielka takes the direct free kick.
    • 55:08 Magaye Gueye produces a left-footed shot from deep inside the penalty box which goes wide of the left-hand upright.
    • 53:46 Magaye Gueye provided the assist for the goal.
    • 53:46 GOAL - Leon OsmanEverton 1 - 0 Blackburn Goal scored by Leon Osman from just inside the penalty area to the bottom left corner of the goal. Everton 1-0 Blackburn.
    • 53:32 Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Magaye Gueye.
    • 53:16 Diniyar Bilyaletdinov takes a shot. Phil Jones gets a block in.
    • 52:13 Leighton Baines has an effort at goal from outside the area missing to the wide right of the goal.
    • 51:34 Corner taken left-footed by Magaye Gueye to the near post, David Dunn manages to make a clearance.
    • 50:22 Effort on goal by Phil Neville from just inside the penalty area goes over the target.
    • 49:26 Leon Osman takes a shot from inside the box clearing the bar.
    • 48:32 David Dunn produces a right-footed shot from just outside the box that goes wide right of the goal.
    • 47:18 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Phil Jagielka by Gael Givet. Direct free kick taken by Tim Howard.
    • 46:53 Unfair challenge on Magaye Gueye by Gael Givet results in a free kick. Magaye Gueye takes the free kick.
    • 46:08 Leon Osman is caught offside. Paul Robinson takes the direct free kick.
    • 45:48 Jack Rodwell takes a shot. Phil Jones gets a block in.
    • 45:01 The match restarts for the second half.
    • Half Time
    • 45:00+2:03 The referee calls an end to the first half.
    • 45:00+1:06 Leon Osman takes a shot. Save made by Paul Robinson.
    • 45:00+0:48 Jack Rodwell takes a shot. Blocked by Phil Jones.
    • 42:31 Free kick awarded for a foul by Diniyar Bilyaletdinov on Ruben Rochina. Paul Robinson restarts play with the free kick.
    • 42:04 Foul by David Dunn on Diniyar Bilyaletdinov, free kick awarded. Phil Jagielka restarts play with the free kick.
    • 40:38 Free kick awarded for a foul by Ruben Rochina on Jermaine Beckford. Tim Howard takes the direct free kick.
    • 39:43 Martin Olsson fouled by Tony Hibbert, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick crossed by David Dunn, clearance by Diniyar Bilyaletdinov.
    • 34:26 Inswinging corner taken by Leon Osman, Christopher Samba makes a clearance.
    • 34:08 Leon Osman takes a inswinging corner from the left by-line to the near post.
    • 32:57 Shot from just outside the box by Phil Neville goes over the bar.
    • 32:20 Ruben Rochina concedes a free kick for a foul on Magaye Gueye. Direct free kick taken by Leighton Baines.
    • 31:33 Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Leighton Baines from the left by-line.
    • 30:19 Phil Jagielka concedes a free kick for a foul on Ruben Rochina. Paul Robinson takes the direct free kick.
    • 26:28 Phil Neville gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on David Dunn. Paul Robinson takes the free kick.
    • 25:28 Free kick taken by David Dunn.
    • 25:28 Booking Leighton Baines goes into the referee's book.
    • 25:22 Foul by Leighton Baines on Jermaine Jones, free kick awarded.
    • 24:44 Free kick taken by Phil Jagielka.
    • 24:44 Booking David Dunn goes into the referee's book.
    • 24:28 David Dunn gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Leon Osman.
    • 23:34 Diniyar Bilyaletdinov takes a shot. Save made by Paul Robinson.
    • 22:16 Brett Emerton is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Free kick taken by Tim Howard.
    • 14:57 Substitution Jack Rodwell comes on in place of Johnny Heitinga.
    • 12:50 Corner taken right-footed by David Dunn, clearance made by Johnny Heitinga.
    • 11:11 Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Leighton Baines from the right by-line.
    • 10:49 Phil Jagielka takes a shot. Phil Jones gets a block in.
    • 10:10 Michel Salgado challenges Magaye Gueye unfairly and gives away a free kick. The free kick is delivered right-footed by Leon Osman from left wing, Christopher Samba makes a clearance.
    • 6:17 Ruben Rochina is adjudged to have handled the ball. Phil Jagielka takes the direct free kick.
    • 2:59 Corner taken short by Leon Osman.
    • 2:06 Free kick awarded for a foul by Jermaine Jones on Magaye Gueye. Free kick taken by Leighton Baines.
    • 1:21 Jermaine Beckford has an effort at goal from the edge of the area that misses to the right of the target.
    • 0:31 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Ruben Rochina by Phil Neville. Paul Robinson takes the direct free kick.
    • 0:00 The game kicks-off.

    Live text and data provided by The Press Association.



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    Barclays Premier League results

    16 Apr 2011 23:59 UK


    Barclays Premier League table snapshot

    As it stood on 16 Apr 2011 23:59 UK

    Position Team P GD PTS
    1 Man Utd 32 38 69
    2 Arsenal 31 32 62
    3 Chelsea 32 32 61
    4 Man City 32 20 56
    5 Tottenham 31 8 53
    6 Liverpool 32 7 48
    7 Everton 33 6 47
    8 Bolton 32 3 43
    9 Aston Villa 33 -12 40
    10 Newcastle 32 1 39
    11 West Brom 33 -15 39
    12 Fulham 32 1 38
    13 Stoke 32 -3 38
    14 Birmingham 32 -10 38
    15 Sunderland 33 -12 38
    16 Blackburn 33 -14 35
    17 Wigan 33 -21 34
    18 Blackpool 33 -22 33
    19 West Ham 33 -19 32
    20 Wolves 32 -20 32

    see also
    Saturday's football photos
    16 Apr 11 |  Football


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