By Chris Wright
Centre-back Matt Mills scored the only goal of the game as Championship side Reading claimed yet another notable FA Cup scalp to reach the last-eight stage for the second successive year.
The Royals put Liverpool out of the competition en route to last season’s quarter-finals and Brian McDermott’s side are now within a game of Wembley once again after comfortably seeing off a flat Everton side at Goodison Park last night.
With a hard-fought victory over Chelsea in the previous round still fairly fresh in the memory, David Moyes’ side were limp and listless, systematically failing to match their lower-league opponents in nearly every aspect, and were booed off at full-time as a result.
On the 26th-minute mark, Mills kept his composure to thump a low shot past Tim Howard at the second attempt – a goal which eventually proved decisive thanks to Everton’s repeatedly flaccid final product, a problem not helped by Moyes’ constant tinkering with his tactics.
What’s more, the club have learned this morning that yet another flare-up of a long-standing ankle injury has ended record-signing Marouane Fellaini’s campaign prematurely for the second season in a row, and that spring-heeled midfielder Tim Cahill will miss the next ‘two to three weeks’ with an unspecified foot problem.
Safe to say, this season hasn’t really been a classic as far as Everton are concerned.
Matt Mills (right) thumps a shot through the crowd and past Tim Howard
Louis Saha sees his shot blocked by Reading’s Brynjar Gunnarsson
An exasperated Leon Osman reacts after missing a chance to equalise
David Moyes and Brian McDermott scream instructions from the touchline
Jobi McAnuff is sent sprawling to the ground by Mikel Arteta’s challenge
Everton manager David Moyes keeps his eye on the scoreboard
Reading players celebrate after the final whistle
Photos courtesy of the PA.