Everton laid waste by the destroying Angel of Benfica

Benfica 5 Everton 0

David Moyes was facing a team managed by a man called Jesus and destroyed by a footballer called Angel. With an entire team missing through injury, he needed a miracle.

What he got was the worst single defeat in Everton's European history, watched by the greatest number of supporters to have travelled abroad with the club since the Cup-Winners' Cup final of 1985.

However, in contrast to the 5-1 rout by Dynamo Bucharest that eliminated Moyes' team from the Uefa Cup 20 years later, the sense of humiliation may be all Everton's injury-ruined squad has to deal with on their return to Merseyside. They are still likely to qualify for the knockout stages, although on this evidence it is hard to see them progressing far into the Europa League or beyond Tottenham in Tuesday's Carling Cup tie.

Afterwards, the Benfica coach, Jorge Jesus, whose team have scored 50 times this season, summed up the scale of their victory by saying Benfica had overwhelmed a side that had finished fifth in "the best league in the world", and nobody watching Angel Di Maria, whom Moyes called a "throwback to another age of wingers", torment Everton's back four, could possibly argue.

There were two 21-year-olds on the pitch and it would be an understatement to suggest that Di Maria had a better match that Seamus Coleman, who was making his debut in the most unpromising circumstances – after Leighton Baines broke down to become the 11th member of Moyes' squad to become injured.

The young Irishman was out of position for Benfica's first three goals, which like the final coup de grâce, was set up by crosses from Di Maria, the magical, free-flowing footballer from Rosario who is unlikely to remain at the Stadium of Light for the whole of his six-year contract, but who will cost anyone else around £40m to buy.

Benfica have built up a formidable list of victims in this impressive stadium; Manchester United and Liverpool have both been knocked out of the European Cup here in recent seasons, but they have rarely devoured their opposition with such relish.

Moyes was right to argue that Everton had done well to keep the interval scoreline to a single goal – a Di Maria cross driven home by Javier Saviola – but the collapse when it came, in six inexplicably dreadful minutes, was numbing.

Dan Gosling, the other teenager guarding Everton's flanks, failed to prevent Di Maria from driving in his cross and both times Oscar Cardozo, a forward who has interested Manchester City, beat Coleman to the ball. Pablo Aimar, totally eclipsed by his fellow Argentine, delivered the free-kick that Luisao headed into the roof of the net and, with 52 minutes gone, the only question was how many.

Before the game, Moyes had said he would take a point in Lisbon. After an hour, he would have taken 5-0.

Benfica (4-1-3-2) Julio Cesar; Amorim, Luisao, Luiz, Peixoto; Javi Garcia; Ramires, Aimar (Martins, 68), Di Maria; Cardozo (Coentrao, 77), Saviola. Substitutes not used: Quim, Maxi Pereira, Weldon, Nuno Gomes, Sidnei.

Everton (4-1-3-2) Howard; Gosling, Hibbert, Distin, Coleman; Rodwell; Cahill, Fellaini, Bilyaletdinov (Saha, 58); Yakubu (Baxter, 71), Jo. Substitutes not used: Nash, Duffy, Agard, Baxter, Wallace Akpan.

Referee: N Ivanovov (Russia).

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before