Belfast Telegraph

Howard hands Rovers win

A first-half blunder by goalkeeper Tim Howard condemned Everton to a 1-0 defat to Blackburn at Ewood Park.

Blackburn secured the three points when Howard raced out of his goal in the 14th minute and attempted to clear his lines.

Instead he spilled the ball and Nikola Kalinic swept it home to hand his side victory in a scrappy game.

Blackburn almost opened the scoring after two minutes when Morten Gamst Pedersen's chip released Martin Olsson but with only Howard to beat he hoisted his shot over the top.

Howard was again called into action four minutes later and dealt comfortably with a header from El-Hadji Diouf.

Blackburn made a change after nine minutes with Steven N'Zonzi replacing David Dunn, who appeared to have suffered a groin strain, but it did not knock them out of their stride.

Kalinic's goal delighted the crowd but Everton threatened several times in the remainder of the half.

Midfielder Tim Cahill scuffed a shot at Paul Robinson, and Louis Saha then had an attempt blocked after getting away from Christopher Samba.

Robinson gathered at the second attempt after Steven Pienaar's effort bobbled in front of him, and Cahill headed over.

Everton continued to seek an equaliser but Saha fired high and wide, while Jack Rodwell headed just off target in the closing stages.

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