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Everton 2 Crystal Palace 0 – Premier League Match Report

Everton claimed all three points against Palace to extend their run of good form after two late goals saw Roy Hodgson’s side visit to Goodison end in misery. 

Marco Silva’s tactical changes saw the Everton fans erupt after a poor performance from both sides, with late goals from Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Cenk Tosun meaning Everton have now won three consecutive Premier League games for the first time in the Silva era.

A lifeless first half saw the two teams level after 45 minutes. A scrappy encounter saw half chances from both sides with the best coming from Crystal Palace’s Cheikhou Kouyate who hit the crossbar. James Tomkins also missed a headed opportunity whilst Jordan Pickford was also forced to push a free-kick wide. 

Gylfi Sigurdsson was Everton’s best player in the first half who forced Wayne Hennessey to make a save from close range. 

Roy Hodgson’s side had a chance to take the lead in the 58th minute as Anthony Taylor awarded Palace a penalty after Seamus Coleman tripped Wilfried Zaha inside the box. However, Jordan Pickford’s foot denied Milivojević’s spot-kick proving the England number one’s value to the team. 

The incident sparked the game into life as both teams picked up after the save, with Theo Walcott denied by Wayne Hennessey moments later.

The second half was almost identical to the first until Marco Silva’s substitutes turned the game on its head, with all three of his introductions involved in Everton’s goals. Ademola Lookman provided a quality cross that Dominic Calvert-Lewin headed home. Then moments later Michael Keane played a long ball forward that Cenk Tosun met and fired through the legs of Hennessey to take the victory and end Palace’s chances of a comeback. 

Everton have now moved to 8th in the table and have looked solid in recent performances. Despite today’s fixture being a scrappy affair, Everton’s defence were resolute and eventually managed to break the deadlock and claim all three points. 

Marco Silva’s super subs

With a 0-0 stalemate looking likely, the Portuguese manager introduced Ademola Lookman and Dominic Calvert-Lewin to the game with 10 minutes to go, and it was the England youngsters who set the game alight. An assist from Lookman and a goal from Calvert-Lewin saw the Blues take the lead whilst Everton’s first substitution Cenk Tosun doubled the lead.

Credit must be given to Marco Silva who injected his side with pace and an array of attacking players who unlocked a stubborn Palace defence. Silva may now be under pressure to give Lookman a start in their next fixture as he looked bright in his ten-minute cameo.

Palace’s woes continue

Since the start of September, Roy Hodgson’s side have only scored twice and conceded seven times. Today’s performance only added to Palace’s problems as a strong defensive performance for the first 80 minutes ended with the Eagles conceding twice in the last ten minutes.

However, their attack are also lacking in quality. They have only scored two goals in the last two months and today showed no signs of improvement. They did miss opportunities including hitting the crossbar and missing a penalty but only managed three shots on target in today’s game. Palace fans will be looking for improvement from their side and it needs to come quickly as they play Arsenal, Chelsea, Spurs and Manchester United in their next four fixtures. 

Richarlison: out of place as a striker?

The Brazilian winger started as Everton’s lone striker today but did little to justify a return to that place. Everton’s two substituted strikers both scored whilst Richarlison looked to struggle with the physicality of playing against two solid centre backs.

He looked unable to adapt to Everton’s direct play when the Toffees could not break the deadlock. However, in previous fixtures when he has played in his natural wide role is when he causes defences serious problems. Perhaps Silva’s side would work better if Richarlison played on the wing with Everton’s natural target men playing as the lone striker. 

Man of the match – Jordan Pickford 

The England international showed how he continues to improve. He made strong saves and controlled his area and made a crucial penalty save that kept Everton in the game and go on to get the win. 

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