Anichebe finds answer to lack of Everton ideas

West Bromwich Albion 0 Everton 1

The Hawthorns

Victor Anichebe, a peripheral figure at Goodison Park over the past two seasons, played his way back into the hearts and hymns of Everton's away-day army by plundering the late goal that took David Moyes' side above West Bromwich Albion into ninth place yesterday.

The heavily-built Anichebe, whose career has been blighted by injuries, has started only one Premier League match this season, back in August, while his last goal had come at Birmingham two years ago in March. Yet after coming off the bench midway through the second half, the 23-year-old Nigeria striker pounced on a defensive error to ensure that Albion, cheered from the pitch after Boxing Day's 0-0 draw with Manchester City, departed to the jeers of their fans.

As Moyes noted wryly, it was not a spectacle that anyone will want to buy on DVD. "We'd run out of ideas," the Everton manager admitted with refreshing candour when invited to take the credit for Anichebe's impact. "We wanted to somehow try something different. In the end we nicked a goal but it always looked as if it would take a wonder goal or a mistake."

The aberration, when it came, was a miscued header by Paul Scharner. That allowed Anichebe to hold off Gareth McAuley before turning to fire left-footed past Ben Foster from six yards. However, Everton's slick build-up – a chipped reverse pass by Leon Osman and concise cross from Tony Hibbert – was out of keeping with the plague of wild shots, wayward passes and poor touches.

Albion's head coach, Roy Hodgson, complained about "a very hard result to take", because, echoing Moyes, he had settled for the consolation of a clean sheet. "It was a 0-0 game where both teams nullified each other. Then it became a 0-1 game. We've given three big points to one of our rivals. [Everton] did enough to deserve a draw but we gifted them the goal."

Hodgson, whose side have won only two matches and scored just seven times at the Hawthorns, hinted that he expected the Albion hierarchy to finance some incoming transfers this month, although they have not paid a fee during the January window since signing Richard Chaplow from Burnley seven years ago. "If we're going to have a good season, we need some help," he said pointedly. "I'd like to think we've reached the stage where the type of players who would help us would cost money and demand high wages. And I'm not interested in just bringing in bodies unless I'm sure they're better than what we've got."

Moyes, meanwhile, did not disguise his delight over his "new" player Anichebe. "Victor tore a groin muscle on international duty [in September] and has had no games really, even in the reserves. He played only 25 minutes and even then he felt tired. But he's someone we've missed because he can play wide or through the middle. The goal and the reaction of the supporters will help his confidence."

Substitutes: West Bromwich Albion Dorrans (Brunt, 90). Everton Gueye 6 (Rodwell, 57), Stracqualursi 5 (Saha, 65), Anichebe 6 (Neville, 65).

Booked: Everton Baines, Stracqualursi.

Man of the match Osman. Match rating 4/10.

Possession: West Bromwich 48% Everton 52%.

Attempts on target: West Bromwich 2 Everton 8.

Referee S Attwell(Warwickshire). Attendance 23,038.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas