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PREMIER LEAGUE: Everton cruelly denied win in pulsating draw with Newcastle

Everton and Newcastle United have played out a heart-stopping yet controversial 2-2 draw at Goodison Park tonight.

The fourth week of Premier League action for the 2012/13 season ended in drama with the Toffees and Magpies fighting out for a share of the points on a scintillating contest which will certainly revisit the ongoing goal-line technology debate.

The discussion will surely rage on after tonight's contest with Everton cruelly denied a winner when Victor Anichebe headed home in the 78th minute but the referee's assistant not flagging for a goal when replays showed that the ball had clearly encroached the line.

This came minutes after Marouane Fellaini's goal was also disallowed for offside with the linesman getting that call completely wrong.

Nevertheless, there was plenty of great play which went rewarded as David Moyes' men moved up to seventh with Alan Pardew's Magpies shifting to 11th on the top flight table.

Everton began very brightly and got their reward 15 minutes in when Leighton Baines fired past Steve Harper's left glove from the right side of the box after playing a neat one-two with Steven Pienaar with the South African midfielder flicking a clever backheel into the path of the England left-back.

The Toffees were well on top during the first half and quite possibly could have been further ahead only to see their lead cancelled out when half-time substitute Demba Ba scored across his body. The Senegal star, who started on the bench for Sylvain Marveaux, made an immediate impact when he latched onto Yohan Cabaye's through ball to finish emphatically past Tim Howard with his left foot from the edge of the area.

With two minutes remaining, Anichebe thought he was the hero when he produced a stellar first touch from Pienaar's low pass before turning and whipping a left-footed effort past Harper to give the Toffees the lead.

However, fellow sub Ba grabbed his second moments later when he got on the end of Shola Ameobi's chested ball to score cleverly underneath an advancing Howard to make it 2-2.

There were plenty of chances throughout, namely when Kevin Mirallas, in his first Everton start in the Premier League, almost producing a screamer with his curling thunderbolt from range which swerved to the wrong side of the upright in the 20th minute.

Seven minutes later, Papiss Cisse had a great chance to get Newcastle back into the game when Marveaux's free-kick was not properly cleared by the Toffees defence with Phil Neville's header falling to the Senegalese striker but he put his volley inches wide of the mark from an angle.

Moments later, Phil Jagielka was stiff not to score when he struck a delightful shot from outside the area which curled past Harper but away from goal.

Ten minutes before half-time, Baines was perfectly placed on the goal-line to deny Vurnon Anita's goalbound effort from Hatem Ben Arfa's cut-back pass.

Late in the first half, Pienaar curled an attempt from the edge of the area wide of Harper's far upright when Leon Osman was streaming in on goal as Nikica Jelavic succumbed to his knee injury sustained in a second-minute collision with the post to be replaced by Anichebe.

The second half produced the majority of action with three goals, the offside call and the non-goal as well as Everton keeper Howard coming up with a vital save to deny Ben Arfa late in the game with Jagielka also defending well at the death.

Everton: 2 (Leighton Baines 15', Victor Anichebe 88') Newcastle United: 2 (Demba Ba 49'/89')

Goodison Park, Liverpool - 32,510

Yellow cards:EVE - Phil Neville 6', Steven Pienaar 78', Marouane Fellaini 85' NU - Vurnon Anita 30', James Perch 38', Shola Ameobi 86'

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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