While the game itself was a stodger of the lowest accord, there were touching scenes before Everton’s Monday night fixture against Newcastle at Goodison.
The special mascot for the game was a little white robotic camera, which was being controlled remotely by 14-year-old fan Jack McLinden.
Jack has multiple health conditions and severely reduced mobility and is therefore unable to attend matches in person, but that didn’t stop him providing mascot duties for his beloved Toffees thanks to the AV1 robot, designed by Norwegian company No Isolation.
The AV1 was originally designed to help children with long-term health problems attend school remotely by planting the camera in their classroom and having it feed panoramic live images back to their tablet.
Everton partnered with UK-based charity WellChild to give Jack an unforgettable evening at Goodison without having to leave his bed, with an in-built microphone even allowing him to chat with the players in the tunnel before kick-off.
He even had the distinct pleasure of sitting through a Sam Allardyce press conference…
Everton went on to pull off a narrow 1-0 victory to hump themselves up into eighth, four points ahead of the Toon who remain straddled across the very crease of mid-table in 10th place.