Barry grabs a share of the spoils

Aston Villa 3 Everton 3

Had Archbishop John Sentamu sought some divine inspiration before making his case against Easter Day football, then he might not have chosen this fixture to talk about. The sides contesting it have now thrown the kitchen sink at each other on four occasions in the past year, collectively scoring 19 goals in the process. If the Archbishop's choice of words had prompted any soul-searching before the game – "Do not think ... 22 people chasing a ball around is all life is about," he said of the TV scheduling – then they described what most who had watched the match actually did think, before the day was done.

David Moyes was certainly enthused by the spectacle, even though he left Villa Park aggrieved by Howard Webb's decision to award Villa the penalty which saw them take a point and not to award one, as he well might, for Curtis Davies' second half push on Jo. Joleon Lescott certainly seemed to be watching the ball when he raised a foot which Stiliyan Petrov dropped his head into for the spot-kick which Gareth Barry converted. "He's not seen [Petrov] and he's put his foot up," Moyes said of Lescott. "I don't think his boot catches him." Moyes felt an indirect free-kick for dangerous play would have been more appropriate.

"It's not good criticising the refs – maybe if you criticise them the week before you get an effect the week after," the Everton manager added. He'll encounter Steve Bennett, not Howard Webb, in next Sunday's FA Cup semi-final against Manchester United but clearly wants to head south with a sense of calm. He certainly has reason to do so.

As Everton's players warmed up, Villa screened footage as of Ashley Young's stinging injury-time winner at Goodison Park in the clubs' last fixture but Moyes' side have lost only twice since then and the way they swept past Gareth Barry and Petrov for long periods of the first half – Steven Pienaar was particularly effective in phases of immaculate passing – will give United plenty to think about. Everton fans are currently enjoying the "we're going to Wembley twice" song and that might not be too wildly optimistic.

Martin O'Neill, without a win in 10, was the manager with the furrowed brow. The Champions League "utopia" has now gone for Villa, he admitted, even though Arsenal have the top three sides still to play and, as O'Neill put it, "you shouldn't down tools".

Villa's performance was a vibrant one when they recovered from Everton's start – John Carew tormenting Joleon Lescott, and Ashley Young causing Tony Hibbert difficulties. But Villa, for whom Gabriel Agbonlahor will have a hamstring scan today, have still won only five games in the last 16. At Villa Park, where they are perhaps allowed less space to play, they have five wins all season. They have conceded at least twice in the seven games since Martin Laursen was injured.

Asked what it will take to penetrate the top four, both managers replied: "Money", though O'Neill's case is open to more debate, since only Manchester City spent more than his £40m in the summer. Moyes has spent £22m in the past year, £15m of that on Marouane Fellaini, and has the better knack of getting performances where you least expect them. Fellaini has gradually come to justify his record price tag and it was he who nipped in ahead of Gareth Barry for his eighth goal of the season, after some uncharacteristically neat footwork from another of Everton's hair bear bunch, Jo, allowed Leighton Baines to cross. Fellaini's height is distracting and contributed to Davies letting Tim Cahill escape to meet Pienaar's corner for Everton's second.

Everton found the same difficulties with Carew, who spun on a ball which was ricocheting around the box to pull a goal back. Jo, going some way to proving he can perform away from Goodison, began the move which saw Pienaar holding off Luke Young to re-open the two-goal advantage. But James Milner curled in an exquisite free-kick after Cahill fouled Barry 30 yards out, and after the penalty had equalled things out, Young and substitutes Nathan Delfouneso rained efforts on Howard's goal. A wonderful advertisement for Easter football.

Goals: Fellaini (18) 0-1; Cahill (22) 0-2; Carew (32) 1-2; Pienaar (52) 1-3; Milner 2-3; Barry (66).

Aston Villa (4-4-2): Friedel; L Young, Knight, Davies, Shorey; Milner, Petrov, Barry, A Young; Carew, Agbonlahor (Delfouneso, 53). Substitutes not used: Guzan (gk), Sidwell, Salifou, Reo-Coker, Gardner, Albrighton.

Everton (4-4-1-1): Howard; Hibbert (Jacobsen 65), Jagielka, Lescott, Baines; Osman, Cahill, Neville, Pienaar; Fellaini; Jo (Saha, 80). Substitutes not used: Nash (gk), Van der Meyde, Castillo, Saha, Jacobsen, Rodwell, Gosling.

Referee: H Webb (South Yorkshire).

Booked: Everton Hibbert, Neville.

Man of the Match: Cahill.

Attendance: 40,188 .

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Mia Freedman, editorial director of the Mamamia website, reads out a tweet she was sent.
news
News
people
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
The write stuff: masters of story-telling James Joyce, left, and Thomas Hardy
books...begging to differ, John Walsh can't even begin to number the ways
Sport
Jose Mourinho on Sky Sports
footballEXCLUSIVE COLUMN Paul Scholes: It was not a leg-breaking tackle, as the Chelsea manager had claimed
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

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower