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Everton vs. Tottenham: Grades for Both Sets of Players

Joe TanseyFeatured ColumnistDecember 9, 2012

Everton vs. Tottenham: Grades for Both Sets of Players

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    On Sunday, Everton and Tottenham played in a thrilling match at Goodison Park that ended with the home side winning, 2-1. 

    Clint Dempsey put Spurs ahead in the 76th minute, but that was one of the few great chances they had all night in the attack, which missed the injured Gareth Bale greatly.

    Everton were the best team on Sunday, and they were finally rewarded for their efforts with the two late goals from two of their star players. 

    Late in the second half, the Toffees received two goals in 88 seconds from Steven Pienaar and Nikica Jelavic. 

    Here are the final match ratings from Sunday's match at Goodison Park, all ratings are based on a scale from one to 10, with 10 being the best possible rating. 

Goalkeepers

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    Everton: Tim Howard

    Tottenham: Hugo Lloris

    Grades: Howard: 7, Lloris: 6.5

    Both Howard and Lloris were given tests by the opposing attack, but it was Howard who performed better. 

    Howard only let in one goal, which was not his fault, a shot from Clint Dempsey that was deflected off of Sylvain Distin and into the back of the net. 

    The Everton shot stopper had four saves during the match and kept his club in the match when Spurs went on the offensive at the start of the second half. 

    Lloris played a solid match until the final five minutes, where he let in the two Everton goals. 

    The Frenchman was in good position for both of the goals, but he was unable to save the shots by Steven Pienaar and Nikica Jelavic. 

Full Backs

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    Everton: Leighton Baines, Seamus Coleman

    Tottenham: Jan Vertonghen, Kyle Walker

    Grades: Baines: 7.7, Coleman: 7, Vertonghen: 7.2, Walker: 7

    The play of all four fullbacks on Sunday was magnificent. 

    Coleman stood out in the first half with his continuous runs down the right wing in combination with Kevin Mirallas.

    Once Mirallas was substituted at halftime, Coleman lost some of his punch on the right wing, but he reappeared late in the match with an assist on the first Everton goal. 

    Baines was not a force in the Everton attack on Sunday, but he had a strong defensive performance by shutting down Aaron Lennon for most of the match. 

    Vertonghen was playing without his preferred partner on the left side, Gareth Bale, but the Belgian still excelled in the Spurs attack. 

    The Belgian left back helped inspire the second half surge by Spurs as he attempted three shots on goal in a 20-minute span. 

    Walker did not get forward as much as he usually does, as he was forced to stay back and defend Steven Pienaar for most of the match. 

Center Backs

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    Everton: Phil Jagielka, Sylvain Distin

    Tottenham: William Gallas, Steven Caulker

    Grades: Jagielka: 6.5, Distin: 6.5, Gallas: 5.5, Caulker: 5.5

    Everton's pair in the middle of defense only had one big error on Sunday, and it was a deflection off of Distin that resulted in the first Spurs goal. 

    Although Spurs did get plenty of chances on goal in the second half, both center backs for Everton showed up when they were needed the most.

    That can not be said about the Spurs pair in the center of the back four.

    Gallas and Caulker were at fault for letting both Steven Pienaar and Nikica Jelavic break into the penalty area and score goals late in the second half.

    On the first goal, Pienaar was unmarked and flew threw the top of the penalty area to send a powerful header into the back of the net.

    On the second goal conceded by Spurs, Jelavic was able to sneak through the Spurs defense and slot home the winner. 

Wingers

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    Everton: Steven Pienaar, Kevin Mirallas

    Tottenham: Clint Dempsey, Aaron Lennon

    Grades: Pienaar: 7.5, Mirallas: 7, Dempsey: 8.5, Lennon: 5.5 

    The best play on the pitch at Goodison Park on Sunday came from the wing positions.

    Dempsey was the man of the match for Spurs as he single-handedly lifted the club's attacking prowess in the second half.

    As a reward for his hard work, Dempsey scored in the 76th minute after his shot deflected into the goal off of Distin. 

    The other winger for Spurs, Lennon, was shut down by Leighton Baines for most of the match and rarely had a chance on goal. 

    Mirallas was one of the top performers in the first half, but he did not come back out onto the pitch after halftime due to his ongoing issues with a hamstring injury.

    Pienaar scored an unlikely header in the 90th minute to equalize the match for the Toffees. 

    Before his powerful header, Pienaar had a few solid runs into the penalty area but was quiet for the most part. 

Central Midfielders

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    Everton: Leon Osman, Darron Gibson

    Tottenham: Moussa Dembele, Sandro 

    Grades: Osman: 7.2, Gibson: 7, Dembele: 7.3, Sandro: 7.3

    Before he was taken off in the 81st minute, Osman was powering the Everton comeback. 

    Osman ended the match with five shots and seemed to be in front of the Spurs goal on every second-half attack by the Toffees. 

    Gibson did not do anything spectacular on Sunday, but he was consistent with his passing to the key players in the Everton lineup.

    The former Manchester United player ended the match with a pass accuracy of 92 percent. 

    Dembele also ended the match with a pass accuracy of 92 percent. 

    Once Dembele switched spots with Dempsey in the Spurs midfield, he began to have a bigger impact on the match, and the move also let Dempsey run free on the left wing.

    Sandro had yet another consistent performance in midfield for Spurs, and he even provided the club with some strong forward runs. 

    The Brazilian also got involved in the Spurs attack in the second half as he ended the match with three shots. 

Forwards

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    Everton: Marouane Fellaini, Nikica Jelavic

    Tottenham: Emmanuel Adebayor, Jermain Defoe

    Grades: Fellaini: 6.5, Jelavic: 7, Adebayor: 5, Defoe: 5

    Fellaini was fairly quiet compared to his usual output on the pitch, and he failed to create chances for the Toffees on Sunday.

    Jelavic created the last and most meaningful chance of the day for Everton with his winning goal in stoppage time. 

    Jelavic was able to sneak through the Tottenham defense and finish off a pass from Apostolos Vellios to score his seventh EPL goal of the season.

    As for Adebayor and Defoe, they were atrocious on Sunday.

    The two Tottenham forwards combined for just one shot on goal, which came on a 20th minute shot by Defoe. 

Substitutes

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    Everton: Steven Naismith, Apostolos Vellios, John Heitinga

    Tottenham: Tom Huddlestone, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Iago Falque

    Grades: Naismith: 6, Vellios: 7, Heitinga: 5, Huddlestone: 6, Sigurdsson: 6.5, Falque: 5

    Naismith was the first player to come on as a substitute when he replaced Kevin Mirallas at halftime. 

    Naismith failed to make an instant impact on the match, and he could not continue the positive play on the right wing that Mirallas had with Seamus Coleman in the first half.

    Vellios was the most productive of all the substitutes as he provided an assist on Nikica Jelavic's game-winning goal. 

    Huddlestone came on as a replacement for Aaron Lennon in the 72nd minute and could not make any impact on the match.

    Sigurdsson came on in the 77th minute and created a chance for Spurs eight minutes later as his shot hit the crossbar. 

    Both Heitinga and Falque came into the match with fewer than five minutes to go and were on the pitch long enough to make any impact on the match. 

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