Everton wins 2021 Florida Cup in penalties over Millonarios

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Photo by Brandon Connelly / Orlando Soccer Journal

Everton defeated Colombia’s Millonarios F.C. 10-9 in penalties after the match ended 1-1 at the end of regulation during Sunday’s Day 1 of the 2021 Florida Cup at Camping World Stadium.

Everton are colloquially known as the Toffees, this is due to the close proximity to two toffee shops near the Queen’s Head Hotel where Everton’s early development as a club occurred. Toffee is a confection made by caramelizing sugar or molasses along with butter, and occasionally flour. The mixture is heated until its temperature reaches the hard crack stage of 300 to 310 °F. In the first half of this match, the toffees looked absolutely cooked. 

Millonarios had the better chances in the first 45 minutes, breaking through on a header from Andrés Llinás in the 19th minute from a corner after a promising run.

The Colombian side had more opportunities from Felipe Román and Jorge Rengifo, but thanks to heads up goalkeeping from Everton’s Asmir Begovic, the Merseyside club were able to stay within a goal. The best chance at leveling the score came from James Rodriguez in the 41st minute who had an amazing shot from the top of the box, but his attempt hit the woodwork and Everton would go down 1-0 heading into halftime. 

More of the same through most of the second half. Both teams making substitutions and Nathan Broadhead had an early attempt in the second half for Everton but his shot glanced just wide of the far post. Finally, in the 64th minute, after Broadhead was taken down in the box by Millonarios’ keeper, Everton were awarded a Penalty and Demari Gray converted it to level things at 1-1.

Both sides looked content to take it to penalties as Millonarios didn’t look to threaten and Everton could only generate minimal chances. At the final whistle, the game was still tied at one apiece. 

Onward to penalties where it was a real back and forth affair. Only Gordon for Everton and Marquez for Millonarios were denied their opportunities. That is, until it came down to everyone’s favorite bit of chaos: Keepers taking penalties. Asmir Begovic, the Bosnian keeper for Everton, went first. He took a calm walk up to the spot and made the most of his chance to potentially win it. It would come down to Juan Moreno, a halftime sub in at keeper who hadn’t faced a tremendous amount of pressure in the match proper. His penalty wouldn’t prove to be too difficult for Begovic and with the stop, Everton would secure the win and the title of Florida Cup Champion.

Maybe it just takes time for toffee to come out well? Maybe on a humid night in Orlando, It can finally come home (after a holiday at Universal Studios).

Scoring Summary

19′ – Andres Llinás (MIL)

64′ – Demarai Gray, penalty (EVE)


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