Tim Howard's 10 Best Games as Everton Goalkeeper

Cheyenne Hollis@@cheyennelhollisCorrespondent IMay 2, 2012

Tim Howard's 10 Best Games as Everton Goalkeeper

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    Tim Howard's transfer from Manchester United to Everton in the summer of 2006 proved to be a blessing in disguise.

    The swapping of Old Trafford for Goodison Park was disappointing for the player and fans alike after he started his Red Devils career in such fine form.

    His form dipped in the second half of the 2004-05 campaign and would eventually find himself replaced by Roy Carroll after a few high profile blunders. The most famous of these saw Manchester United against FC Porto in the Champions league Round of 16.

    However, Manchester United released Carroll, and it appeared Howard was set to be his first choice in 2005-06. This was not the case, as manager Sir Alex Ferguson brought in Edwin van der Sar, and Howard would spend the season rooted on the bench.

    The next season saw Howard loaned to Everton. The deal would become permanent during the season under cloudy circumstances.

    Howard became firmly entrenched as the first-choice goalkeeper upon his arrival to the blue half of Merseyside. Everton have finished no lower than eight in the league since Howard's arrival.

    The New Jersey native signed a contract extension in March that will keep him at Everton until 2016.

    Here is a look at Howard's top 10 Everton performances to date.  

Howard Helps Everton Humiliate Liverpool in Merseyside Debut

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    Tim Howard's first Merseyside derby saw him help hand Liverpool its largest defeat at Goodison Park in almost 100 years.

    Andrew Johnson's debut for Everton saw him steal the headlines with a brace, but Howard's presence at the back ensured Everton maintained the clean sheet.  

    Howard made a fine save to deny Luis Garcia and keep the score 1-0 in the first half. Liverpool would pile on the pressure, but could not find a way past the former New York MetroStars keeper.

    This would the highlight of Johnson's time at Everton, while Howard's overlooked performance against the Reds would be a sign of good things to come. 

Howard Helps Everton Finally Overcome Chelsea in FA Cup

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    It was not the most sensational performance from Howard during Everton's win against Chelsea in this fourth-round FA Cup replay.

    Instead, the American made the saves he had to make to ensure Everton had a chance to progress against a strong Chelsea side at Stamford Bridge.

    Howard was called upon several times during normal time to keep the scores level as the Blues peppered the Everton goal with shots.

    Frank Lampard would break the deadlock in extra time, but Leighton Baines would equalize, sending the contest to penalties.

    Howard turned away a poor spot kick from Nicolas Anelka. Ashley Cole sent his penalty into the stands, allowing Everton to prevail 4-3 on penalties.

    The sturdy display from Howard in goal proved to be the difference on the day.   

Howard Makes Blackburn Pay a Penalty

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    In one of the odder matches this season, Howard saved a penalty, saw Blackburn miss another penalty and kept Everton in the match long enough for Mikel Arteta put a penalty home to win the match for Everton.

    The Toffees looked poor for most of the match and had their goalkeeper and the post to thank for not conceding. Howard saved a second half spot kick from Junior Hoilett and saw Mauro Formica thump his against the woodwork.

    Everton, going through the early season slump that normally plagues the club, were dominated by an aggressive Blackburn side.

    Howard saved the day on numerous occasions, including an instinctive save when Formica shot from close range towards the end of the match.

    Despite his teammates being run ragged, Howard ended up on the winning side when Arteta put away a penalty in what would be one of his last acts for the club before heading to Arsenal two weeks later. 

Another Penalty Save Gives Howard His Spurs

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    Everton were in the midst of a dreadful during the 2009-10 season when Tottenham Hotspur came to Goodison Park for a league match.

    The Blues had a length injury list, while Tottenham were hoping to boost its top-four credentials. 

    Howard has a spectacular first half to keep the scores level at halftime. There was little he could do about Defoe or Michael Dawson's second-half strikes, however.

    Everton mustered a comeback and leveled the scores, but Tony Hibbert fouled Wilson Palacios in the box.

    With Everton's season hanging in the balance, Howard powered Defoe's penalty away and gave Everton a much-needed point.

    The save would be crucial, as Everton would turn their season around and go on a seven-match unbeaten run in the league to pull away from the relegation zone.  

Howard Ends Chelsea's Title Dreams

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    Scoreless draws are rarely savored by fans, but Everton's 0-0 result against Chelsea towards the end of the 2008-09 season was a great spectacle. 

    Both goalkeepers were called into action early and often. Petr Cech and Howard seemed to match each other save for save at Stamford Bridge, as neither side was able to break the deadlock.

    Howard made an incredible leaping save from a rare John Terry long-range shot and would also save brilliantly when Saloman Kalou tested him from a corner kick.

    The result was a massive one for Everton in two regards. First, it ended any real chance Chelsea had at winning the title. Second, it gave the Toffees hope they would be able to overcome Chelsea in the FA Cup Final a month later.   

MLS All-Stars No Match for Howard

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    It is difficult to put a preseason friendly on this list, but Tim Howard was absolutely dominant against the MLS All-Stars in 2009.

    He seemed to be the only Everton player trying for a majority of the match. He single handily shut down the motivated MLS attack led by former Everton teammate Landon Donovan.

    As we have seen before on this list, and will see again shortly, Howard is also pretty good at stopping penalties.  

Unbeatable Howard Plays the Part Against Portsmouth

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    Everton's 1-0 victory against Portsmouth was remarkable for the fact it was the team's fourth consecutive clean sheet.

    Tim Howard was in goal for all four matches, and against Portsmouth, his performance was vital for his club. 

    Portsmouth ran Everton ragged throughout the match, but could not find a way past Howard in goal. The highlight of the match being Howard's save against Kevin-Prince Boateng in stoppage time. 

    It was a fantastic performance from Howard, and he would go on to cement his place as one of the best goalkeepers in England throughout the season leading up to the 2010 World Cup.  

Howard's One-Man Show Disarms Arsenal

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    Everton had no business drawing against Arsenal when the Gunners traveled to Goodison Park in the 2006-07 season.

    Arsene Wenger's side outclassed Everton, constantly threatening Howard's goal. It seemed it would be a matter of if and not when Arsenal would take the lead.

    Thanks in large part to Howard, that moment never came, and Everton snuck in a later winner to send Arsenal back to London in shock.

    Cesc Fabregas constantly menaced the American's goal, but Howard was up to the Spaniards challenge. The battle between the two lasted the entire match, but it was Howard who had the last laugh.

    Not only did he keep a clean sheet, but Andy Johnson would score the winner in stoppage, as Everton's push for a European place continued in Howard's first season with his new club.  

Tim Howard.......Goal Scorer?

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    In reality, Tim Howard's goal against Bolton this season was a fluke. 

    It is still incredible, though. He became only the fourth goalkeeper to score in Premier League history, and it was the longest goal scored in the EPL.

    Everton lost the game, and that kind of takes the luster off the performance. However, people will only remember the goal, and the result will become secondary. 

Howard Comes Back to Haunt Manchester United

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    Tim Howard finally got revenge against Manchester United when the two teams met in the 2009 FA Cup Semifinals.

    Howard had led Everton over United in the past, but this match was different. The Red Devils were closing in on the chance to win four trophies, while Everton has not reached a cup final since winning the competition in 1995.

    The match itself was unremarkable, with neither team providing much excitement. It would take penalty kicks to separate the two sides.  

    In what is Howard's finest moment for Everton to date, he stopped the first United penalties and inspired Everton to the victory. 

    Dimitar Berbatov and Rio Ferdinand's spot kicks were not particularly impressive, but the American still came up big when his team needed him to.

    It will be hard for Howard to ever match that performance, but his new contract will give him at least four more years to try.