Aston Villa v Everton: Five Memorable Matches From The Most Frequent Fixture In English Football

The Two Historical Giants Meet In The League For The 203rd Time On Friday Night
09:00, 23 Aug 2019

Aston Villa v Everton, the most played fixture in top-flight history, reconvenes on Friday night following the Villans' return to the big time.

Grand, storied clubs and founding members of the Football League, the two sides first met in 1888 and face off again under the lights at Villa Park this week for their 203rd league meeting.

Here, we look back at five classic Villa-Everton fixtures from the Premier League era.

EVERTON 2-3 ASTON VILLA, December 7, 2008

This game encompassed all the highs and lows of being a football fan in a matter of seconds.

Goodison Park was still rocking in celebration after Joleon Lescott appeared to have rescued a point for the Toffees with an acrobatic finish in the 93rd minute.

However, while his Villa team-mates looked dejected and forlorn, Ashley Young had other ideas. As Evertonians continued to punch the air, the winger raced towards the Gwladys Street, skipped the ball around Lescott and curled it low past Tim Howard and into the back of the net to complete one of the most dramatic finishes in Premier League history.

Cue wild celebrations as Young and the rest of the Villa players, joined by a buoyant Brad Friedel in goal, raced the entire length of the Bullens Road to celebrate infront of a raucous away end. (Head to 8.24 in the video below for peak drama)

Complete ecstasy for one set of supporters, pure pain for another - this is why we love it.

EVERTON 3-2 ASTON VILLA, October 20, 2001

Everton were good value for their win but this one goes down in football folklore not for the Blues’ shooting prowess but rather because Peter Schmeichel became the first goalkeeper to score a goal in the Premier League era.

With Villa trailing 3-1, the towering Dane raced up for a corner and lurked at the back post.

Despite standing at 6’3”, wearing bright sky blue and the fact this was a rare foray forward, Everton’s bemused backline failed to pick him up and he lashed a volley high into the net via a stunned Niclas Alexandersson stood on the line.

Schmeichel had no time for proper celebrations though - running back to his own box with all the purpose and focus of a man determined not to crack a smile, allowing only for a few high-fives with his enthralled Villa pals.

It’s no surprise he had already found the net nine times in his career before this strike - one goal for Manchester United, two at Brondby and six for Hvidovre in his homeland.

ASTON VILLA 3-3 EVERTON, April 12, 2009

Everton arrived at Villa Park eager for revenge just four months after Young’s heroics.

After 23 minutes, it looked like they had got their own back with Marouane Fellaini tapping in and Tim Cahill being Tim Cahill by powering home a header to give David Moyes’ side a 2-0 lead.

John Carew got one back for the hosts but Steven Pienaar restored Everton’s advantage with a stunning turn and curler from the edge of the area.

Alas, Villa would come to haunt the Toffees once more, however - James Milner firing in a free-kick from distance before Gareth Barry struck from the spot after Lescott had nicked Stiliyan Petrov on the head with a stray boot in the area. 

Certainly a great game for the neutral, though by now, Evertonians were sick of the sight of claret. 

ASTON VILLA 4-0 EVERTON, December 26, 2005

This was a horror show for Everton during a very unmerry Christmas for the Blues.

Just six months after finishing in the top four for a shot in the Champions League, the Toffees were in freefall.

Having lost to Bolton 4-0 at home on December 17, Everton travelled to Villa Park on Boxing Day and suffered another knockout, beaten black and blue, again by four goals.

The game is best remembered as the infamous sole appearance of Per Kroldrup, the £5m centre-back signing who apparently couldn’t head the ball.

Leon Osman explains the defender’s arrival from Fiorentina in his autobiography:

On his very first day of training, the gaffer took him to one side and started doing heading practice with him, like you would with a seven-year-old. It was a case of holding the ball, saying: 'Are you ready? One, two, three – jump.'

The lesson clearly hadn’t paid off and Kroldrup suffered a horrendous afternoon as Villa bombarded him with an aerial assault. Unable to cope with the physicality or frantic nature of the attacks, the hosts took full advantage.

EVERTON 4-0 ASTON VILLA, November 21, 2015

Aston Villa could not live with the attacking verve of Romelu Lukaku and Ross Barkley as Everton’s frontmen ripped them to shreds.

The Toffees led 4-0 before the hour mark, with wave after wave of attack looking like producing another certain goal.

Everton’s opener was a stunner, the team firing up the pitch with stunning touches and movement to carry the ball forward before Gerard Deulofeu’s cross landed on Barkley’s right boot.

Lukaku looped a header past a sprawling Brad Guzan and placed another into the corner with ease either side of another Barkley strike to grab a fine three points.

The Villans would go on to be relegated later this season, winning just three matches all campaign.