Premier League Live Blog: Reading vs. Everton
Posted by Mike on August 18, 2007
I’ve officially begun watching the weekend Premier League games on Fox Soccer Channel. And if there’s a live sports event I’m watching, There’s a good chance that I’ll live blog it. Starting this week, I’ll be live-blogging at least one EPL game each week for the entire season.
Today Reading plays Everton at Madjeski Stadium.
Why You Should Watch: Both Goalies are Americans, and these two teams were the surprises of the Premier League last season.
10:10 am, 10th minute: Joining the game a bit late here…Reading has dictated the pace so far, playing much more aggressively than their match against Manchester United. Tim Howard has been tested a few times.
10:17, 17th minute: Everton doesn’t seem to be very comfortable with the ball right now. Lack of concentration with their passing. The rain might be a big factor today.
10:19, 19th minute: Reading was given two decent scoring chances in one minute: a free kick and a corner kick. But they weren’t able to create even a threat out of it.
In what led to the corner, the ball hit two Everton defenders, Lescott and Neville, in the arms before going out of bounds. It could have become a penalty kick, but the ref didn’t see it.
10:23, 23rd minute: Doyle gets a very good pass in the box, but he cant put enough spin on his shot and it goes wide of the goal.
10:25, 25th minute: Reading break away from the defense, and Hunt and Doyle get a really good scoring chance. Hunt passes to Doyle downfield, but Doyle’s pass back to Hunt at the top of the box is too strong, and Everton clears. If Reading wants to do well this season, they can’t throw away great opportunities like that.
10:29, 19th minute: Doyle makes a good cross into the box to put Hunt in near perfect position for a goal, but the header is weak. Ugh.
10:33, 33rd minute: Everton gets a good chance at free kick, and after the initial block Reading had a hard time clearing it, but eventually manage to end the threat. They’ve been playing solid defense so far.
10:35, 35th minute: Reading captain Greame Murty injured his hamstring, and he has to come out of the game. In is place is Ecuadorian Ulises De La Cruz.
10:37, 37th minute: Everton hasn’t done a good job of creating any chances out of their set pieces (corner and free kicks). That last corner was kicked to no one in particular.
10:41, 41st minute: While Reading seems to be in control of this game, neither team have created many scoring chances, and in the few which Reading have created, bad execution ended any real chances. Overall both have played good defense.
10:44, 44th minute: GOAL! Reading throws the ball into the box, the Everton defense falls asleep, and Hunt is able to get a clear shot to put past Tim Howard. 1-0, Reading just before halftime.
Looking at the replay, Doyle did a good job of disabling a defender, doing just enough to keep him out of the way so that Hunt can receive the ball.
10:47: It’s the end of the first half, and Reading goes into halftime up 1-0. Reading were the aggressors for the entire first half, and Stephen Hunt was finally able to convert. For Everton to come back in the second half, they need to be more aggressive up front, and do a much better job of converting their free kicks and corners.
11:03, 46th minute: The second half begins.
English soccer fans remind me of the student sections at college football and basketball games. At least, they would be similar if all of the students were drunk.
11:08, 50th minute: Everton is about to try another free kick. They’ve yet to really make Marcus Hahnemann work today.
11:10, 52nd minute: Everton just had four scoring chances from three set pieces, but they managed to do almost nothing. Good defense on Reading’s part, but these guys need to do a better job of execution.
11:12, 55th minute: Victor Anichebe injured his foot after Hunt tried to take the ball from him. He’s clearly limping, but it looks like he’ll try and keep playing.
11:14, 57th minute: Everton has made the decision for Anichebe, sending him off in favor of Steve Pienaar.
Reading got another good humt, wiith Hunt getting the ball in th box. He couldn’t control the ball though, and Everton is able to clear it.
11:19, 61st minute: With 30 minutes remaining, Reading seems to be in control. Everton still haven;t created any really good opportunities in the second half.
11:24, 66th minute: Oh! Everton bery nearly score on a Reading mistake there, as the ball bounces behind Hahnemann. But Andre Bikey is there to make the stop and calmly clear the ball out of bounds. Bikey has been doing a great job all day.
11:28, 70th minute: if you had to guess what nation other than England is best represented on reading’s squad? what would it be?
Given up? It’s Iceland. Reading has four players from the land of glaciers, volcanoes, and putrid shark meat. In fact, I have a new name for Reading: Porramatur FC.
meanwhile, Soel comes out of the game for Reading in favor of John Oster.
11:34, 76th minute: We’ve had a fairly clean game so far. But the last minute the ref has given two yellow cards, one to Everton before a Reading corner kick, and the other to Ivar Ingimarsson after going for the ball and running into Tim Howard.
11:36, 79th minute: goalscorer Stephen Hunt is coming out of the game to a standing ovation. Taking his place is American Bobby Convey, who was one of our few bright spots in Germany last year.
11:37, 80th minute: Corner kicks by Everton: 11. Shots on goal off the corner kicks: 0.
11:39, 81st minute: Here’s a rule I don’t understand. John Oster is down in the middle of the Everton zone while they’re is on the attack. But the ref doesn’t stop the game, even though the ball might come in his direction. Why?
11:42, 84th minute: McFadden of Everton gets yellow carded for diving. He wasn’t even touched.
11:43, 85th minute: Oh… Everton got a really good chance there. McFadden had Hahnemann completely fooled with a great cross shot from the right side, but it hits the left post. Andrew Johnson has a clear shot on the rebound, but he can’t convert. This was by far Everton best scoring chance, and they executed very well; they got pretty unlucky, though.
11:46, 88th minute: At this point, Reading only has to hold on for about five minutes (if you factor in extra time). If they play defense the way they did against Manchester United, they can chalk up their first win of the season.
11:52, Full Time: It’s over, as Porramatur FC (Reading) win 1-0 off Stephen Hunt’s goal in the first half and great defense in the second half. Everton wasn’t able to get good chances all day.