- Everton vs Swansea

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Saturday 12 January 2013 | Goodison Park | Referee: Phil Dowd | Attendance 35,782

0 - 0

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Match report

For match photos, scroll to Photostream above. Manager reactions to follow shortly.

Vincente Del Bosque got no goals from Michu but saw an accomplished defensive showing from Chico Flores as Swansea City claimed a creditable goalless draw at Everton.

The Spain manager, at Goodison Park to run the rule over Swansea's quartet of Spaniards, saw two sides cancel each other out in a tight Barclays Premier League battle.

The in-form Michu went the closest of two hard-working sides to scoring when he forced Tim Howard to tip a shot on to the crossbar in the first half.

Everton had the better of the second period but Flores and partner Ashley Williams were solid and, while Marouane Fellaini forced a late save from Michel Vorm, referee Phil Dowd had spotted an infringement.

Swansea went into the match buoyed by their brilliant Capital One Cup semi-final first leg win over Chelsea in midweek and maintained their recent momentum. The Welsh side are now unbeaten in seven matches in all competitions.

It was another frustrating draw for Everton, who lost ground in their top-four push but they once again proved they are a tough side to beat.

The Toffees were boosted by the presence of Leighton Baines, who overcame an ankle problem, while Swansea freshened up their side as Michel Vorm, Nathan Dyer, Dwight Tiendalli and Kemy Agustien came in.

Fellaini had the first chance of the game for Everton inside the opening minute but his 20-yard shot was easily claimed by Vorm. The Swans goalkeeper was then called upon to make a block after a poor backpass from Ben Davies allowed Nikica Jelavic in.

Jelavic spurned another good chance minutes later when he got on the end of Steven Pienaar's inviting clipped cross, but he failed to make firm contact and volleyed narrowly wide.

Swansea had their first serious opportunity when Pablo Hernandez launched a counter-attack but his ball inside for Dyer was too strong and Tim Howard gathered. Hernandez, another of the four Swansea Spaniards hoping to impress Del Bosque, then attempted a spectacular shot from outside the area but screwed his effort well wide.

Anichebe went close when he reacted quickly after Fellaini headed on a Phil Jagielka ball but Vorm palmed away his header and Ashley Williams hacked off the line.

Michu was inches away from giving Swansea the lead as he raced onto a fine ball from Dyer and delicately attempted to chip Howard from close range. Howard backtracked and managed to palm the Spaniard's effort onto the bar.

Seamus Coleman responded for Everton by beating Agustien and Hernandez on the right and pulling back a low cross but Fellaini shot tamely at Vorm. Baines flighted a free-kick into the Swansea area with his customary accuracy but Leon Osman, looking to mark the 10th anniversary of his debut with a goal, headed a glorious chance wide.

The Swans finished the first half strongly with Davies firing in a cross from the left but Sylvain Distin put it behind for a corner as Dyer lurked behind him.

Everton made a positive start to the second period as Phil Neville took up an attack from Coleman and forced Vorm to save a low shot. That yielded the first of three corners in quick succession for the Toffees. The first two came to little but Distin met Baines' cross from the third with a firm header which was only narrowly off-target.

Everton kept up the pressure with Fellaini winning a loose ball and Anichebe lifting it across the box, but Jelavic failed to make contact with an attempted overhead kick.

The Croatia international set up Fellaini when he nodded the ball on inside the area but the Belgium midfielder was unable to get the ball from under his feet and Williams cleared.

Baines still offered quality and he presented Jagielka with a fine chance from a corner 16 minutes from time but the centre-back headed over.

Everton then sent on Steven Naismith in a late attacking change but were unable to break through with Fellaini heading at Vorm but being penalised for a push and Jelavic shooting over.

Everton manager David Moyes: "We are a bit frustrated but Swansea did a really good job in midweek on Chelsea, not dissimilar [to this]. We needed to play a bit better, pass it a bit quicker and be a little bit cleverer in the final third. We had three or four good opportunities, but just not perfect [ones]. I couldn't turn around and say I thought anyone missed a real sitter.

"I thought we kept going, we tried to do the right things. We could have done it better but I can't fault the players for their effort. We just couldn't get the ball over the line today, that was the thing. Apart from one Michu opportunity in the first half when he chipped it and Tim [Howard] flicked it on to the bar, I don't think we were threatened that much. They have had a busy week, a hard week, and it is a great point for them. We are just disappointed we couldn't turn our opportunities into goals."

Swansea manager Michael Laudrup: "It has been a little bit more than a good week - it has been a great week. Three very difficult games, different games, and I think three great performances. To come here and play Everton in such a difficult away game, after playing in midweek against Chelsea, and to get a point is a great result. Once more, it was a great performance, although maybe getting the points in a different way that we are used to. For two games now, Wednesday and today, we didn't have the ball as much as we are used to and still we performed so well. To come out of here with two clean sheets says a lot about the team and the team spirit we have.

"If [Spain manager Vincente] Del Bosque had called me before, I could have told him it wasn't the best game to see Michu. But in Spain they are watching the Premier League and Del Bosque knows exactly what Michu has done until now, so I think it was just a visit. I think he has already made up his mind about Michu. We say often about Michu - he gets one chance and he nearly scores a goal again. Like the other day - one-and-a-half, two chances and he scores. That is really class."

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Fan Rating

- rate the player performances for this match

Line-up All Fans BFR
24. Tim Howard - -
23. Seamus Coleman - -
15. Sylvain Distin - -
3. Leighton Baines - -
6. Phil Jagielka - -
22. Steven Pienaar - -
18. Philip Neville - -
21. Leon Osman - -
28. Victor Anichebe - -
25. Marouane Fellaini - -
7. Nikica Jelavic - -
Substitutes All Fans BFR
31. Matthew Kennedy - -
8. Bryan Oviedo - -
16. Thomas Hitzlsperger - -
1. Ján Mucha - -
34. Shane Duffy - -
14. Steven Naismith - -
27. Apostolos Vellios - -
Line-up All Fans BFR
1. Michel Vorm - -
33. Ben Davies - -
21. Dwight Tiendalli - -
6. Ashley Williams - -
4. Chico - -
11. Pablo Hernández - -
22. Angel Rangel - -
12. Nathan Dyer - -
24. Ki Sung-Yueng - -
26. Kemy Agustien - -
9. Michu - -
Substitutes All Fans BFR
15. Wayne Routledge - -
25. Gerhard Tremmel - -
16. Garry Monk - -
2. Kyle Bartley - -
10. Danny Graham - -
7. Leon Britton - -
20. Jonathan De Guzmán - -

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