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17:02 30th January 2010


Cahill goal punishes missed opportunities from Latics


Cahill 84

Report by Paul Chialton

A harsh result for Latics having dominated the game for large periods and creating the better chances, only for Tim Cahill to grab the win with a late headed goal.

Then, seconds from the final whistle with nothing to lose Charles N'Zogbia smashed the crossbar with an effort from 20-yards, desperate misfortune for the Frenchman who had been magnificent all afternoon.

Roberto Martinez's men as a team had given everything throughout the 90 minutes to make this the exciting end-to-end game that it was.

Hendry Thomas and James McCarthy were in fine form, hustling the midfield and showing great composure on the ball to bring in those around them. It was little surprise that McCarthy picked up the man-of-the-match award.

But chances missed in both halves left the visitors in the game, and when former Wigan Athletic full-back Leighton Baines delivered a corner six-minutes from time there was Cahill to head home the punishment.

But it could so easily have been a different story when, in the first-half Jason Scotland twice found himself in a one-on-one situation with Tim Howard, unable to take the opportunity.

His link-up play with Hugo Rodallega and N'Zogbia was superb, and when he fed in the Colombian after 25 minutes it seemed the opening goal was a certainty. But he couldn't quite get hold of his shot and Howard had a comfortable save in the end.

Paul Scharner's introduction in the second-half added an attacking thrust to the side but on a couple of occasions the Austrian's final ball couldn't reach it's target and the chance had passed.

Overall Martinez will feel hard done by not to get anything from this encounter but opportunities such as the ones that came his team's way this afternoon have to be taken at this level.

Latics: Stojkovic; Boyce, Bramble, Caldwell, Figueroa; Thomas (Gomez, 88), Diame (Scharner, 58); N'Zogbia, Rodallega, McCarthy; Scotland (Sinclair, 80)

Subs: Pollitt, Amaya, Watson, Koumas

Everton: Howard; Neville, Senderos, Heitinga, Baines; Pienaar, Cahill, Fellaini, Osman; Donovan (Anichebe 75), Saha (Vaughan, 90)

Subs: Nash, Duffy, Coleman, Rodwell, Bilyaletdinov

    Data provided by Press Association