After three successive defeats, Everton finally managed to return to winning ways, outclassing Crystal Palace 3-0 at Goodison Park. Goals from Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Anthony Gordon and Dwight McNeil made sure that Everton walked with three points.
This was not a win by nick but a well rounded dominating performance. This was the kind of performance that Everton supporters want to see every week. The attack had come under heavy scrutiny in the last few games but the attackers did not disappoint, taking their chances and creating goalscoring chances. Frank Lampard’s men jump to 11th in the table with 13 points.
With Everton dominating the proceedings in the first half, Jordan Pickford had hardly anything to do but he remained vigilant if the ball hovered around the goal area. Pickford produced a wonderful save from Michael Olise shot from a corner in the second half to keep Everton’s lead intact.
At 34, one would expect Seamus Coleman to slow down. At times the Irishman has been worn down but not today. Coleman was crucial in making a loose ball clearance before Wilfried Zaha could attack it. The veteran also had some glitterazi in his pocket as he pirouetted to get past Eberechi Eze. The Irishman was up to the mark in the first half.
Coleman made a timely and perfect challenge to dispossess Zaha in the second half. Overall, a very powerful and domineering display from Coleman, keeping Zaha contained for almost the whole game.
Conor Coady was fantastic at the back, with not much pressure on the Everton defence, the Wolves loanee used his intelligence to read the game and position himself brilliantly. In the second half, Coady threw his body over the line to prevent Eze from taking a shot from an inviting ball into the box.
Since signing for Everton, James Tarkowski has at times been the source of launching attacks through his perfectly weighted diagonal balls and long passes. He attempted to launch attacks through those diagonal long balls. Defensively, he was astute, making some important blocks in the first half. Throughout the game, he continued to show his aerial prowess.
After a couple of silent games where there wasn’t much contribution from Vitaliy Mykolenko, the Ukrainian was assuring in the opening half, carrying out his defensive duties. There were complaints of Mykolenko not getting forward enough, those complaints were quashed today as the 23 year old had some impact in the opposition half too.
Mykolenko was at it again in the second half, not leaving a chance to advance up the pitch. The 23 year old stormed down the left flank with space in front of him. With the ball being fed by Onana, Mykolenko took a powerful shot which was partially saved by Guaita with the ball falling in Gordon’s path and the 21 year old netted home.
Idrissa Gueye looked in the best of his shape and intensity. Supplying energy while making important interceptions around the field, Gueye was looking flawless on several occasions. In possession, he was neat and precise.
Amadou Onana showed tenacity in the first half, not losing the ball easily while also playing accurate passes and having the silky touch in possession. Defensively, he did have a couple of mistimed tackles. Onana was clever to see the run of Mykoelnko and the space that the Ukrainian had in front of him, passing the ball to the full back in the buildup to the second goal. The Belgian came off in the 78th minute for 21 year old James Garner as Everton looked to see out the game.
Alex Iwobi is easily Everton’s most creative player and after a couple of dormant games, the Nigerian was back at the heart of Everton’s creative department. The 26 year old threaded some exciting balls forward that kept the Crystal Palace defence alert. Iwobi recorded his fourth assist of the season with a scrumptious pass to Dominic Calvert-Lewin which was converted by the Englishman.
Iwobi played an important part in the second goal. It was the Nigerian to see the space in front of Gray and release him forward. Iwobi was constantly on the lookout to create those half chances and thread balls that could trouble the Palace defence. Iwobi was again excellent in the third goal, playing a well crafted back flick into McNeil’s path who scored the goal, with the 26 year old registering his fifth assist.
Anthony Gordon was deployed on the right wing instead of the left and the tactical change made by Lampard instantly showed results as the youngster looked much more lethal in the attack. Defensively he was committed in winning the ball back, showing energy in winning the ball back.
Gordon finally got his reward for the hard work he had put in, scoring Everton’s second goal. Mykolenko’s shot was saved and the ball fell in no man’s land and Gordon was the first one to attack and put it in the back of the net.
Starting his second consecutive game in three days, Dominic Calvert-Lewin kicked off his Premier League 2022-23 campaign at Goodison Park in style, netting a beautiful, well worked goal in the 11th minute. Interestingly, this was Calvert-Lewin’s first goal since the famous flying headed goal against the same opposition that guaranteed Everton’s safety. Calvert-Lewin picked up Iwobi’s pass from outside the box, before storming in the box and producing a composed finish past Vicente Guaita.
Calvert-Lewin was excellent in running down the channels and maintained the momentum until the 78th minute. The player was taken off for the final 12 minutes of the game, as he grew in confidence and gained much needed goal boost.
Playing on the left, Demarai Gray looked electrifying from time to time and looked lively in the first half. Had a couple of shots, one of which was straight at Guaita. He was part of the buildup to the second goal and was given a standing ovation for his strong performance, as he came off in the 71st minute.
The former Burnley man came on for Gray to supply fresh legs and keep the lead intact. McNeil scored the third goal, creating the goal from midfield, driving forward before playing a beautiful one-two with Iwobi and finally slotting it home to score his second Everton goal.
Garner came on for Onana to give some fresh legs in the midfield as the Toffees aimed to see the game out.
Maupay came on for Dominic Calvert-Lewin.