Everton play host to a loud chorus of disapproval

Everton 0 Wigan Athletic 0

As befits a club with a theatrical impresario for a chairman, there is a vast poster for Les Miserables outside Goodison Park. There was no point in asking Bill Kenwright if he could hear the people boo; the sounds of discontent on the final whistle could have been heard on the Wirral.

The frustration at Everton sometimes appears overwhelming. No side in the Premier League have won fewer home games, and this was their season reduced to 90 minutes of often intense pressure that produced no goals and one rather unsatisfactory point.

The afternoon was summed up by Everton inviting a choir on to the pitch at half-time for a rendition of "Silent Night" and then turning the sprinklers on.

For all their dominance and territorial advantage, the Wigan keeper, Ali Al Habsi, was not required to make a serious save until diving full length to block a fierce long-range drive from Steven Pienaar, when the electronic scoreboard was showing 41 minutes remaining. By the time it had run down to 30, Everton might have broken through at least three times.

First, Pienaar's pass sent Louis Saha through on goal. The Frenchman seemed to lose the ball under his feet and his shot was blocked by Al Habsi spreading himself in front of a striker who has not found the net in 21 Premier League matches.

Then a header by Tim Cahill nearly rolled on to the post. Almost immediately afterwards, another chancefell to the tips of SeamusColeman's boots, but he sent the ball blazing over Al Habsi's bar. Still, it seemed an inevitability that Everton would break through and then go on to win comfortably.

Instead, Wigan finished the stronger side, and although David Moyes made a series of changes to inject fresh impetus into his formation, the Everton manager confessed thatthey had simply made hisside worse.

"With 20 minutes to go we were playing worse than atany time in the game," he said afterwards. "My substitutions were poor and I made the wrong choices."

Jermaine Beckford, who had snatched a point late on against Bolton and equalised at Stamford Bridge last weekend, started on the bench. He put the ball in the net yesterday but this was ruled out for offside. Leighton Baines's crossing against his former club was exceptional; Coleman was sometimes inspired; but football's basic act – putting the ball in the back of the net – remained tantalisingly outof reach.

And but for a stunningly good save from Tim Howard, Ronnie Stam might have snatched victory for Wigan against the sprint ratherthan the run of play.

"We went for it," Moyes reflected. "I don't know if you get better chances in the Premier League, and the longer we don't take them, the greater the frustration and the greater the anxiety in the crowd.

"We are not beating the teams at Goodison that over the years we have done. I have asked myself whether it is anything more than us not scoring goals and I don't think that it is."

Substitutes: Everton: Beckford for Saha (60), Anichebe for Pienaar (66). Wigan: Stam for Cleverley (h-t), McArthur for Thomas (64).

Bookings: Everton: Neville, Pienaar. Wigan: Thomas, Gohouri, Figueroa, N'Zogbia.

Attendance: 32,853

Referee: Michael Oliver

Man of the match: Al Habsi

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Suited and booted in the Lanvin show at the Paris menswear collections
fashionParis Fashion Week
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Kara Tointon and Jeremy Piven star in Mr Selfridge
tvActress Kara Tointon on what to expect from Series 3
Voices
Winston Churchill, then prime minister, outside No 10 in June 1943
voicesA C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
News
i100
News
An asteroid is set to pass so close to Earth it will be visible with binoculars
news
News
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

Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project