Toffees’ sweet win soured as Saha sent off

DAVID MOYES saw his Everton side chalk up a much-needed victory after securing the signature of former West Ham full-back Lucas Neill shortly before the match.

Everton were in control from the start with Joseph Yobo, Sylvain Distin and Steven Pienaar all scoring before half time. Jo added a fourth in the second half.

“We played well, we kept control of the ball and the game also,” said Distin. “It’s a good result.

“Since I’m here it’s a tremendous atmosphere and I found a bit of desire again. I’ve been close from the first game to score a goal and scored this one. I hope there’ll be more.”

However, the night ended on a sour note with substitute Louis Saha sent off in stoppage time for lashing out at Juanfran.

Russian midfielder Diniyar Bilyaletdinov marked his first start by having a hand in the first three and was given a rousing reception when he came off in the second half.

Bilyaletdinov delivered the corner and Yobo peeled away from his marker to open the scoring.

Everton went 2-0 ahead in the 17th minute and it was another corner from the Russian that led to the goal. The Greek side failed to deal with it and Marouane Fellaini was the first to react in a crowded area, scoring from close range.

Pienaar made it 3-0 in the 37th minute with a goal out of nothing. The South African latched on to a good crossfield ball from Bilyaletdinov to thump a shot from 25 yards beyond the goalkeeper.

AEK’s troubles increased in the 55th minute with Carlos Araujo sent off after kicking out at Distin.

Saha should have extended Everton’s lead in the 79th minute but sent his shot over the bar.

But they did not have long to wait with Jo getting their fourth goal three minutes later before Saha’s sending off.

EVERTON: Howard, Gosling, Yobo, Distin, Baines, Pienaar (Saha 67), Cahill (Osman 46), Rodwell, Fellaini, Bilyaletdinov (Yakubu 52), Jo.

AEK ATHENS: Sebastian Saja, Jahic, Arce, Geraldo (Nsaliwa 13), Araujo, Juanfran, Makos, Kafes, Scocco, Leonardo (Yahaya 71), Blanco, (Nsaliwa {Manduca 46}).

Referee: Robert Malek (Poland).


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