Everton 4 Leyton Orient 1

Last updated : 27 January 2002 By Austin Rathe
Gascoigne set up three of Everton's four goals and was generally outstanding all afternoon. He displayed awareness, skill and bursts of pace that were thought to be lost. He also lasted 90 minutes, another very praise worthy achievement.

Whilst Everton were by far the better side, it took an own goal by Orient's Dave McGhee to set the ball rolling. On 11 minutes the inpressive Hibbert crossed well from the right, aiming for Campbell in the six yard box. Instead of the ball reaching the Everton captain, it was placed beautifully into the top corner by McGhee. It truly was a great header, and any center forward would have been proud of it.

From that point on, the show was Everton's. Shortly after going one up Campbell missed a good chance, after he had been played in by a sublime through ball from Gascoigne. Duncan Ferguson did double our lead shortly afterwards. Gascoignes run down the right found him at the edge of the box, and his square ball was despatched clinically by the big Scot from 18 yards out.

Orient may have been down, but they were by no means out, and snatched back a lifeline on 36 minutes. Scott Canham fired home from close range after Simonsen had failed to cleanly collect a long range shot. To bbe fair to the 'keeper, the ball took a deflection on the way in, so parrying it was understandable, but its a good job that it didn't really matter.

As the first half drew to a close Everton continued to dominate the game. The victory was sealed just before the half time whistle when Gascoigne ran into the box, tricked between two players and squared to Campbell who turned and shot smartly low and into the corner from six yards out.

In the second period the visitors remained defiante and fought to the last. Noone could question thier commitment. Matt Lockwood and Andy Harris both went close, the former with an excellent long range drive which was well handled by Simonsen. It was, however, only going to be a matter of playing out the game, Everton never really looked like being in danger, despite some Orient penetration down the channels. It appeared that Tony Hibbert's desire to get forward, which is to the commended, sometimes left holes in the right back position. However, as these were never properly exploited, it doesn't really matter.

The final nail was brillianly drilled into the visitors coffin by the Gascoigne/Campbell combination with 10 minutes to go. Picking the ball up in his own half, Gazza ran forward with his head up, taking on and beating three players before playing a graet ball through for Campbell, who calmly chipped the advancing 'keeper to get his second and Everton's forth. It was good to see Campbell scoring again, we need his goals, and he is a confidence player, all the abuse he was given earlier in the season affected him, but he appears to be back as fresh as ever.

Everton continued to push forward, with Campbell twice going close. Firstly a one-two with led to his close range shot being well saved, and then he nearly scored with a curving effort from 18 yards. Alas, a hattrick evaded him, but there were very few things to be disapointed about as Everton negotiated a potential banana skin with style. Kudos Paul Gascoigne !