MX23RW : Sunday, February 17 12:40:45
Jul 22, 2017 at 3pm UK at ​Cristal Arena
Genk
1-1
Everton
Samatta (55')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Rooney (45')

Result: Wayne Rooney nets again as Everton held by Genk

Wayne Rooney scores his second goal of pre-season in Everton's 1-1 draw with Genk at the Luminus Arena in Belgium.

Everton have been made to work hard for a 1-1 draw against Belgian side Genk at the Luminus Arena in their final friendly prior to the start of their 2017-18 campaign.

The Toffees took the lead late in the first half through Wayne Rooney's second goal since returning to the club this summer, converting from debutant Sandro Ramirez's cross.

Ally Samatta struck early in the second half to earn the hosts a draw, however - a fair reflection on the basis of the 90 minutes, which faded out as the game wore on.

Jordan Pickford and Sandro were handed their Everton debuts, and it did not take long for the £30m keeper to be tested as he stood his ground to keep out dangerman Leandro Trossard.

Belgium Under-21s international Trossard was at it again moments later, this time turning on the edge of the area and flashing the ball narrowly wide of the target.

Both sides were seeing plenty of the ball but struggling to create too many opportunities in the opening 40 minutes or so, with Rooney's deft flick forcing a rare save out of Nordin Jackers.

Trossard was unlucky not to open the scoring at the third time of asking when shooting narrowly wide at the end of a good passing move, while Rooney again came close with a 30-yard free kick, picking out the roof of the net on this occasion.

Just when the Belgian side were growing more and more into the match, testing Pickford twice in quick succession through Benson Manuel and the lively Trossard, Rooney appeared at the back post to help home Sandro's killer cross from the right.

Genk were level within 10 minutes of the second-half restart, though, courtesy of Samatta's strike down the middle after substitute Cuco Martina only half-cleared a cross into the box.

Everton had Maarten Stekelenburg to thank for not falling behind two minutes later, with the replacement keeper somehow keeping out Samatta's diving header by helping the ball onto the crossbar.

Thomas Buffel was wayward with a back-post volley from the best of the remaining chances in a second half that petered out, not helped by the numerous changes made by visiting manager Ronald Koeman.

Everton now turn their attention to next Thursday's Europa League tie against Slovakian outfit Ruzomberok, officially marking the start of their 2017-18 campaign.

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Jordan Pickford of Preston North End looks on during the Sky Bet Championship match between Preston North End and Middlesbrough at Deepdale on August 9, 2015 in Preston, England.
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