Everton have a chequered history with penalty kicks.

Introduced in the 1891-92 season, the Toffees promptly missed their first three.

Everton's first penalty kick was awarded when they played at Anfield - on March 5th 1892 - but Alex Latta's shot was saved by Stoke's Ike Brookes.

Fred Geary was a formidable goalscorer but he put the next penalty kick wide at Bolton in October 1892, then hit the post against Burnley at the club's new Goodison Park home in December 1892.

The first one ever awarded in an Everton match, to Sunderland on Christmas Day 1891, was also saved by Blues keeper Richard Wilson.

So Everton had to wait until an FA Cup quarter-final at Goodison Park against Sheffield Wednesday in 1893 before Bob Kelso finally achieved the distinction of becoming Everton's first successful penalty taker.

Everton's record has been just as erratic in modern times.

The Blues hold the distinction of being the first team to win a penalty shoot-out in the European Cup, when Harry Catterick's wonderful side knocked out German champions Borrusia Moenchengladbach at Goodison Park in 1970.

They didn't win another for 32 years, until Newcastle were beaten in a League Cup tie at St James' Park.

Everton had lost their previous four shoot-outs before that success, and even now have only triumphed in six of 16.

But Everton have still boasted some magnificent penalty takers - and some surprisingly sloppy spot-kick men.

Here's a brief history of some of Everton's penalty prize guys....

LEIGHTON BAINES (25 out of 28)

Top of the pile in terms of quantity of successful penalties, if not ratio, Baines confidently converted 25 of his 28 penalty kicks.

And he rapped in the rebound from one of his only three misses.

Baines claimed the responsibility against his old club Wigan Athletic early in the 2009-10 league season after Louis Saha had fired wide the previous weekend at Burnley and cost Everton a point.

It was a high pressure kick, too, awarded in the 93rd minute with the score 1-1.

The ruthlessly dispatched kick would quickly become a template for Baines, scoring 16 of his next 17 - the only blemish in October 2011 when Petr Cech saved from him in a League Cup tie.

Baines didn't have a favourite side, firing the ball with pace and technique into either corner.

After David De Gea saved from him at Old Trafford in 2015, in a game Everton lost 2-1, Baines seemed happy to hand over the responsibility to less assured takers like Romelu Lukaku, Ross Barkley and Kevin Mirallas.

He still took seven more - scoring five - and holds the record of the most successful conversions in Everton history.

The last one he took was in a League Cup quarter-final penalty shoot-out against Leicester City in 2019, which was saved, ironically after his humdinger of a 30-yard drive had taken the tie into a penalty shoot-out!

ROY VERNON (18 out of 19)

Widely hailed as Everton's greatest penalty taker, 1963 title winner Roy Vernon was ahead of his time.

A silken dart of a finisher, Vernon would take a two or three step step run-up, with precious little back lift, and fire the ball right-footed low into either corner.

Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper Bill Brown was the only man to foil him in March 1962 at White Hart Lane.

Colin Harvey once described Vernon as "the greatest penalty taker I've ever seen."

That's enough of a recommendation for anybody.

DAVID UNSWORTH (23 out of 26)

Another left footed full-back, like Baines, Unsworth took his first Everton penalty kick when he was just 21.

And rarely have Everton boasted a more composed finisher from 12-yards.

Unsworth had ice running through his veins, slotting the ball calmly either side of the goalkeeper, or on high-pressure occasions like Merseyside derbies smashing the ball with venom into the top corner.

After six successful conversions he put one against a Goodison crossbar, in a match against Sheffield Wednesday which Everton went on to win 2-0.

The crossbar could still be shaking now.

After a spell at West Ham United, where he scored in a penalty shoot-out against Arsenal, he returned to Everton in 1998 and resumed spot-kick duties.

On two occasions, against Tottenham Hotspur and Birmingham City, he converted two penalties in a match, and when he left Everton continued to take spot kicks for Portsmouth and Wigan Athletic.

He famously scored a last-minute penalty to keep Wigan in the Premier League and relegate the club who had sold him, Sheffield United.

That's pressure!

TOMMY LAWTON (eight out of eight)

Tommy Lawton didn't just step into the legendary Dixie Dean's number nine jersey, he also inherited his mantle as Everton penalty taker - and proved an immaculate replacement.

After scoring from the penalty spot in his debut as a 17-year-old, "like an old man of the game" according to one report, he confidently converted all eight penalties he took for the Toffees.

PETER BEARDSLEY (six out of six)

Along with Bob Latchford, who scored all three of the penalties he took, and Jimmy Gabriel, who converted four out of four, Beardsley is the only other post-war Everton penalty taker with a perfect record (having taken more than two penalties).

He assumed spot-kick duties after Kevin Sheedy saw a kick saved in a match with Sunderland in 1991, and rotated the duties with Tony Cottee.

Stuart Barlow also missed one in that era, but Beardsley was 100 per cent reliable.

GRAEME SHARP (18 out of 22), TREVOR STEVEN (23 out of 29) AND KEVIN SHEEDY (11 out of 15)

It's no surprise that one of the most successful squad of players in Everton's history had some of the most successful penalty takers.

Graeme Sharp, Trevor Steven and Kevin Sheedy all enjoyed the responsibility of penalty taking at some stages between 1982 - when Sharp scored past Dai Davies at Swansea's Vetch Field - and 1991 when Kevin Sheedy saw one saved by Tony Norman in a 2-0 victory over Sunderland.

Adrian Heath also pitched in scoring three out of four.

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DUNCAN FERGUSON (8 out of 10)

A six feet four inch striker renowned for his aerial ability isn't a natural fit for a penalty taker, but Ferguson proved remarkably reliable from 12 yards.

Big Dunc only missed two of the 10 he took - and of those two he converted the rebound against West Bromwich Albion at the Gwladys Street End to sign off his playing career in style.


Trailing 2-0 to Wimbledon, in the last match of the 1993-94 season, Graham Stuart knew he had to score to preserve 40 years of unbroken top-flight history and throw Everton a relegation lifeline.

It was his first penalty for the club, and the only other one he had taken in his career, for Chelsea, he had missed.

But Stuart's response was perfect.

He sent the goalkeeper one way, the ball the other, and fired decisively into the corner of the Park End goal to spark a Great Escape which his second goal of the game, almost an hour later, completed.


Whenever Evertonians are asked for the names of the two greatest players in the club's history, the response is generally unanimous - Dixie Dean and Alan Ball.

So curiously their records are also top of the 'Most Missed penalties' chart!

Alan Ball missed seven of the 20 penalties he took for the Blues, but such was his force of character few could prevent him from continuing to take them! And he did score 13.

Dixie, meanwhile, missed six of the 17 he took - although he did score from the rebound of one.

Wayne Rooney is one of the few men on the list to have a record of missing more than he actually scored, squandering four opportunities but scoring three.

Mind you, one of those successful efforts was at Anfield.

Andy King was in the same group, missing five and scoring four.

Pre-war winger Jackie Coulter took three - and missed the lot before finally giving up the responsibility.

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Everton have scored 455 of the penalties awarded to them, missing 196.

The very first they scored on February 18th 1893 by Bob Kelso attracted very different descriptions in the local and national media.

"From one of his shots Allen fouled Milward, Mr. Armitt awarding a penalty kick, Kelso adding a third goal from it. Final; Everton 3, Sheffield Wednesday 0."

Who would you choose as your all-time greatest Everton penalty taker? Let us know in the comment section.

The Sheffield Independent, however, proved a little less than independent in their description.

"The Wednesday goalkeeper had been the recipient of some heavy charges, and as Milward was dashing at him he this time, unfortunately, lost his temper, and after throwing away the ball he kicked the Everton forward.

"Upon this the referee came to the rather extraordinary decision that a penalty kick had been incurred, and Kelso, taking it, Everton added another point in spite of a great effort by Allan, who just managed to touch the ball."

In the days when it was an extraordinary decision to award a penalty for losing your temper, throwing the ball away and kicking an opponent!

The Liverpool Mercury's version was: "Milward, rushing in to take the ball from the right wing, received a kick from Allan which was so unprovoked that a penalty kick was given to Everton. This was entrusted to Kelso, who scored splendidly."