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Moyes rues late slip-up

David Moyes, the Everton manager, said on Friday that he would willingly pay to watch his side, such was the attractive nature -- allied to strength and power -- of their play.

He had been provoked by Steven Gerrard's assertion that, on the evidence of the 2-2 draw with Liverpool in the Merseyside derby, Everton were little more than a "long-ball" team.

At half-time at Craven Cottage, had Moyes bought a ticket, he might have felt a bit short-changed. Everton huffed and puffed and displayed a distinct lack of penetration. After the break, though, Everton were transformed.

Marouane Fellaini struck twice, to give Everton a 2-1 lead, and it was only a last-minute equaliser that denied them victory. "I can't believe we only drew," Moyes said. "At times, we were absolutely terrific."

Fulham had gone in front fortuitously. Bryan Ruiz's curling free-kick cannoned off a post and Tim Howard's shoulder to find the net.

At least huff-and-puff Everton became give-and-go Everton after the interval. First, Seamus Coleman released Kevin Mirallas and his cross from the right was turned in by Fellaini. Then Fellaini controlled Phil Jagielka's huge punt forward -- yes, a long ball; perhaps Gerrard did have a point -- before driving home a fierce shot.

Yet just when Everton appeared to have halted a run of three successive draws Dimitar Berbatov made a hash of his goal attempt and Steve Sidwell prodded home at the far post.


Sunday Indo Sport