Unpredictable Blues claim another laudable away win

Wednesday, 3 February, 2021 0comments  |  Jump to last
Leeds United 1 - 2 Everton

Gylfi Sigurdsson's first Premier League goal since December set Everton on their way to another away win

Everton bounced back from two disappointing results against Leicester and Newcastle by holding off stern second-half pressure to take all three points at Leeds.

Gyfli Sigurdsson's first Premier League goal since he notched the winner on the Toffees' last visit to Yorkshire in December set them on their way with just eight minutes gone and Dominic Calvert-Lewin doubled the lead shortly before half-time with his 16th of the season.

A goal for the hosts just two minutes after the break, converted by Raphinha after a mix-up in the visitors' defence, put the destination of the points in doubt but some important saves from Robin Olsen helped Everton cling on to claim their first win in three matches.

Having made his displeasure at Wednesday's performance against Newcastle known in no uncertain terms, Carlo Ancelotti restored Mason Holgate and Ben Godfrey to the starting XI, although the latter was deployed at centre-half alongside Yerry Mina while Lucas Digne continued at left-back.

André Gomes and Sigurdsson started in central midfield with Alex Iwobi wide on the right and James Rodriguez on the bench alongside new signing Josh King who was eligible to play after all despite only signing for the club in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

Leeds had the first the first chance of the game before a minute had elapsed when Godfrey blocked Raphinha's effort from the angle but in an open game, it was Everton who scored first. Gomes sent Digne down the left with an excellent ball and the Frenchman put a dangerous cross into the centre where Sigurdsson arrived to side-foot home.

Calvert-Lewin had a chance to test Illan Meslier when the ball ricocheted back to him but his shot from 20 yards out was tame while, at the other end, Olsen had to parry Mateusz Klich's shot away and Ezgjan Alioski rattled a volley off the post from a corner.

Shortly afterwards, Olsen had to bat Pascal Struijk's header over the bar while Calvert-Lewin was handed another chance to break his scoring drought in the Premier League but he made a mess of the finish.

The England international got his goal four minutes before half-time, though, after winning Everton's first corner. Sigurdsson swung in the set-piece, Godfrey helped it on with his head and Calvert-Lewin was there at the back post to head into the empty side of the goal to make it 2-0.

The Blues' advantage was cut in half early in the second half when Mina hesitated over an awkward ball into the box, Holgate failed to clear and Bamford knocked it aside for Raphinha to pass it into the far corner of Olsen's net.

Long spells of anticipated Leeds pressure followed and Marcelo Bielsa's side thought they had made the breakthrough just past the hour mark but Olsen made a good one-handed stop to deny Klich, parried a follow-up from Jack Harrison and then saved crucially from Raphinha with his feet.

Bamford dropped a header onto the roof of the net and substitute Keane had to block Luke Ayling's shot behind as the Yorkshireman continued to press in the closing stages and after Calvert-Lewin had squandered a gilt-edged chance to seal it when put clean through, Tyler Roberts skied the last chance deep into stoppage time.

The win leaves Everton sitting in sixth place, four points off the Champions League spots ahead of a trip to Old Trafford to face title-chasing Manchester United on Saturday.

 


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