Wednesday 27 February 2013
Everton booked an FA Cup quarter-final tie against Wigan Athletic after overcoming Oldham Athletic in Tuesday night's last-16 replay at Goodison Park.
The home side took the match to their League One opponents from the start and went ahead on 15 minutes when Kevin Mirallas turned in Darron Gibson's cross. Oldham's Jose Baxter hit the inside of the post against his former side before Leighton Baines doubled Everton’s advantage 11 minutes before the interval, converting a penalty after Connor Brown had handled in the area.
"We matched them with our attitude and the quality came through in the end"
Steven Pienaar'scross was guided past goalkeeper Dean Bouzanis by Leon Osman on 62 minutes to put Everton 3-0 ahead before substitute Matt Smith scored his fourth goal of Oldham's cup run two minutes later.
Afterwards, Everton assistant manager Steve Round paid tribute to the attitude of his players.
"It was a tough game," he told Everton's website. "Oldham put a right shift in and pushed us all the way. They were a credit to the manager and themselves. They acquitted themselves right and made it very tough.
"I know we were against opposition lower than the Premier League but there were signs that our cohesion was coming back. The way that Steven Pienaar and Leighton Baines, and Kevin Mirallas and Seamus Coleman were linking up – we showed that maybe we are starting to return to some sort of form.
"Having said that, we matched them with our attitude and the quality came through in the end. You saw that with one or two of the goals that we scored. Unfortunately we missed a couple of chances to make it that little bit more clinical."
Round said that Marouane Fellaini, who missed the tie with an injury, would return for the visit of Reading in the Barclays Premier League on Saturday.
FA Cup holders Chelsea travel to Championship side Middlesbrough this evening looking to set up a last-eight clash with Manchester United.
Interim manager Rafael Benitez will be without defenders Gary Cahill because of illness and Cesar Azpilicueta because of a leg injury.
"We have watched clips of them, they are a team that will give everything in the FA Cup and it will be a tough game as always," said Benitez. "They have a good idea of how to play and they have a good manager."
The match is a repeat of the 1997 FA Cup final, which Chelsea won 2-0 with goals from Roberto Di Matteo and Eddie Newton.
Everton 3-1 Oldham Athletic
Middlesbrough v Chelsea, 7.45pm