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Villa held by Everton in scrappy goalless draw

Villa held by Everton in scrappy goalless draw

Alex Moreno scored for Aston Villa at Everton but it was ruled out for offside by VAR
Alex Moreno had the ball in the net for Aston Villa before VAR disallowed the goal for an offside in the build-up

Aston Villa missed the chance to move level on points with Premier League pace-setters Liverpool as they were forced to settle for a draw in a scrappy, low-quality encounter with Everton at Goodison Park.

In the first goalless draw in manager Unai Emery’s 97 top-flight games with Arsenal and Villa, his side could not produce the decisive moment to enable them to overhaul Manchester City and move into second place.

Villa thought they had taken a first-half lead when Alex Moreno rifled a 25-yard finish past Everton keeper Jordan Pickford but the goal was ruled out for offside after a four-minute video assistant referee (VAR) check.

Everton had chances of their own before the break but the struggling Dominic Calvert-Lewin could not beat Emi Martinez after racing clear, the Villa keeper then producing a superb save from James Garner.

Villa pressed after the interval, with Jhon Duran coming close, but this very poor game eventually fizzled out into a draw.

Everton remain 17th, one point above the relegation zone.

Calvert-Lewin struggles continue

Everton’s lack of a goalscoring spearhead has been a constant source of concern but it was hoped the return to fitness of England striker Calvert-Lewin after a couple of injury-plagued seasons would provide the answer.

He showed signs of promise on his return earlier this season but has been suffering a barren spell. This was his 13th game without a goal and he was replaced by Beto after 63 minutes.

Calvert-Lewin last scored in the win at West Ham United in October and his lack of confidence was painfully illustrated when he missed the best chance Everton carved out just before half-time.

He raced clear with time and space, and with only Martinez to beat, but he never looked convincing and his finish was kept out by the Villa keeper.

“I keep reminding him the further away it gets, the closer it gets. One will go in,” said Everton boss Sean Dyche.

“He did everything right, hit it hard and low and the keeper makes a good save. I hope he’s not worried about it. He’s working hard all the time, that’s what we want.”

Calvert-Lewin is not short of endeavour but he is struggling badly. Everton will need him to pull out of the slump quickly as more goals will be a crucial commodity in their fight for Premier League survival. It may not be long before Dyche is tempted to give £25m signing Beto an extended run.

Elsewhere, it was a landmark day for Everton’s 35-year-old captain Seamus Coleman, who established a club record by making his 355th Premier League appearance.

Coleman has been a magnificent servant for Everton since he was signed for £60,000 from Sligo Rovers in January 2009. The right-back’s subsequent career has been an outstanding example of professionalism – and money well spent.

Everton fans with a banner in honour of long-serving defender Seamus Coleman
Everton fans held up a banner in honour of long-serving defender Seamus Coleman before the game with Aston Villa

Mixed feelings for Villa

Aston Villa may feel a draw at Goodison Park against this well-drilled Everton side is not an unacceptable outcome but in reality they should have claimed all three points.

They were denied Moreno’s first-half strike by VAR and while Everton had Calvert-Lewin’s big chance late in the first half, it was Villa doing all the pressing after half-time.

John McGinn was narrowly wide from the edge of the area, Everton defender Vitaliy Mykolenko made a crucial block from Matty Cash, while Duran’s late glance went narrowly wide of the far post.

In the end, deadlock was the outcome and Everton will probably be happier with that conclusion than Villa.

“It is not enough for us, the point we achieved today,” said Villa boss Emery.

“Now we have 43 points and are keeping more or less the the same position for the next couple of weeks (Villa do not play again in the Premier League until 30 January) but we have to be focused on each match, but also to improve what we can.”

It was only the third time this season that Villa have failed to score in the Premier League, the other occasions being defeats at Liverpool and Nottingham Forest.

Emery’s proud record of never having a goalless draw as a Premier League manager is over. And this was just the type of undistinguished game that deserved to end it.

Player of the match

BranthwaiteJarrad Branthwaite

with an average of 7.02

  1. Squad number32Player nameBranthwaite

  2. Squad number23Player nameColeman

  3. Squad number19Player nameMykolenko

  4. Squad number6Player nameTarkowski

  5. Squad number11Player nameHarrison

  6. Squad number37Player nameGarner

  7. Squad number1Player namePickford

  8. Squad number16Player nameDoucouré

  9. Squad number7Player nameMcNeil

  10. Squad number8Player nameOnana

  11. Squad number14Player nameBeto

  12. Squad number10Player nameDanjuma

  13. Squad number9Player nameCalvert-Lewin

Aston Villa

  1. Squad number1Player nameE Martínez

  2. Squad number44Player nameKamara

  3. Squad number15Player nameÁlex Moreno

  4. Squad number6Player nameDouglas Luiz

  5. Squad number3Player nameDiego Carlos

  6. Squad number17Player nameLenglet

  7. Squad number4Player nameKonsa

  8. Squad number8Player nameTielemans

  9. Squad number7Player nameMcGinn

  10. Squad number2Player nameCash

  11. Squad number11Player nameWatkins

  12. Squad number31Player nameBailey

  13. Squad number19Player nameDiaby

  14. Squad number24Player nameDurán

  15. Squad number22Player nameZaniolo



Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1Pickford
  • 23Coleman
  • 6TarkowskiBooked at 73mins
  • 32Branthwaite
  • 19Mykolenko
  • 8Onana
  • 37Garner
  • 11Harrison
  • 16Doucouré
  • 10DanjumaSubstituted forMcNeilat 63′minutes
  • 9Calvert-LewinSubstituted forGomes Betuncalat 63′minutes


  • 2Patterson
  • 5Keane
  • 7McNeil
  • 12Neves Virgínia
  • 14Gomes Betuncal
  • 21André Gomes
  • 22Godfrey
  • 28Ramalho Chermiti
  • 61Dobbin

Aston Villa

Formation 4-4-2

  • 1E Martínez
  • 4Konsa
  • 3Diego CarlosBooked at 48minsSubstituted forCashat 74′minutes
  • 17LengletBooked at 73mins
  • 15Moreno
  • 31BaileySubstituted forDuránat 64′minutes
  • 44Kamara
  • 6Douglas Luiz
  • 7McGinnSubstituted forZanioloat 89′minutes
  • 19DiabySubstituted forTielemansat 64′minutesBooked at 75mins
  • 11WatkinsBooked at 31mins


  • 2Cash
  • 8Tielemans
  • 22Zaniolo
  • 24Durán
  • 32Dendoncker
  • 42Marschall
  • 47Iroegbunam
  • 64Wright

David Coote


Match Stats

Live Text

  1. Match ends, Everton 0, Aston Villa 0.

  2. Second Half ends, Everton 0, Aston Villa 0.

  3. Attempt missed. Amadou Onana (Everton) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.

  4. Foul by Ollie Watkins (Aston Villa).

  5. James Tarkowski (Everton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  6. Ezri Konsa (Aston Villa) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  7. Attempt missed. Jhon Durán (Aston Villa) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Álex Moreno with a cross.

  8. Ezri Konsa (Aston Villa) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  9. Substitution, Aston Villa. Nicolò Zaniolo replaces John McGinn.

  10. Offside, Everton. Abdoulaye Doucouré is caught offside.

  11. Attempt missed. Jhon Durán (Aston Villa) left footed shot from the right side of the six yard box misses to the left. Assisted by Matty Cash with a cross.

  12. Attempt blocked. John McGinn (Aston Villa) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Matty Cash.

  13. Attempt blocked. Matty Cash (Aston Villa) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Ollie Watkins.

  14. Attempt missed. Ollie Watkins (Aston Villa) right footed shot from the left side of the six yard box misses to the right. Assisted by Álex Moreno with a cross.

  15. Offside, Everton. Beto is caught offside.

  16. Foul by Douglas Luiz (Aston Villa).

  17. Amadou Onana (Everton) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  18. Attempt blocked. Abdoulaye Doucouré (Everton) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Amadou Onana.

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