Everton 0 Middlesbrough 1

Last updated : 26 October 2005 By Footymad Previewer
Everton entered their third round of the Carling Cup tie looking to build on the morale-boosting draw against Chelsea on Sunday.

Steve McClaren's side however were hoping to iron out the creases that saw them lose against West Ham.

The renewed optimism predicted following the draw against the Jose Mourinho's all-stars was evident immediately as Everton took the game to Boro in the early stages.

Simon Davies, James McFadden and Matteo Ferrari came in for the injured trio of Tim Cahill, Duncan Ferguson and Nuno Valente.

Everton's formation was unchanged and the 4-4-2 David Moyes had adopted for the Chelsea game looked like a decent side once again.

Boro had two good chances after ten minutes though with Mark Viduka and Chris Riggott causing consternation around Nigel Martyn's goal.

Though Everton should have taken the lead on 17 minutes but Mikel Arteta's powerful shot was blocked by Franck Queudrue.

Boro were struggling to find their rhythm though Emanuel Pogatetz did force a great save out of Martyn which in turn nearly led to an Everton goal as Davies sprinted upfield on the counter-attack, putting a ball through for Kevin Kilbane that was just out of reach.

Viduka at the other end shaved Martyn's left-hand post with a shot across goal on 25 minutes.

Arteta showed terrific skill on 30 minutes to leave the Boro defence ball-watching but his final ball failed to connect with the Everton forwards.

However, Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink latched on to a Viduka ball on 38 minutes to fire a shot through the legs of Martyn to put Boro in the driving seat.

McFadden almost levelled in the last minute of the first half but saw his shot tipped around the post by Mark Schwarzer.

To be fair to both sides they played some entertaining stuff for the crowd of over 25,000 who braved the wet weather to watch their heroes.

Everton signalled their intent at the start of the second half with two decent shots from Beattie and Kilbane narrowly failing to find the net.

At the other end Viduka was denied by Martyn on 55 minutes.

The game was progressing pretty much as the first half with plenty of effort from both sides with little reward.

Andy van der Meyde replaced McFadden for his long awaited debut to rapturous applause from the home crowd.

Viduka saw Martyn's face get in the way of a certain second goal and Hassalbank fired the rebound against the crossbar much to the relief of David Weir, who lost his man.

Arteta received yellow for a late challenge on Pogatetz on 70 minutes as the game began to lose its spark.

Everton were missing Cahill's late arrival in the box and began to look a little predictable as the game ebbed away from them.

A shot on 74 minutes from Arteta stung the hands of Schwarzer to remind Boro that the tie was not yet dead.

Leon Osman replaced Davies and Yakubu came on for Viduka in the closing stages.

Marcus Bent missed a glorious chance as he allowed Riggott and Pogatez to dispossess him in the area.

Weir headed narrowly over from an Arteta corner on 84 minutes as Everton turned the screw in search of an unlikely equaliser.

Arteta nearly levelled matters on 87 minutes with a trademark free-kick but he saw his shot cannon off the cross bar.

Osman, in stoppage time, saw a weak shot gathered by Schwarzer as the pre-match optimism around Goodison Park fizzled out.