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Everton vs West Ham: Instant Reaction

Blues take three points against 4th-place Hammers.

Chris Brunskill/Getty Images

Everton came into the match against West Ham United with injury concerns and not the strongest of lineups, but were able to take three points off Sam Allardyce's fourth-place club.

Everton dominated possession in the first half, but both teams had their fair share of chances. Carl Jenkinson was a menace on the right side for the Hammers, linking up with Andy Carroll a number of times, but West Ham couldn't find the goal.

Romelu Lukaku put the Toffees in the lead in the 25th minute. Steven Naismith headed the ball to Ross Barkley, whose shot was deflected to Lukaku, who then brought it down and coolly slotted it into the back of the net.

Referee Mark Clattenburg, recently infamous for letting his Ed Sheeran fandom get him suspended, lost control of the game towards the end of the first 45 minutes, and had a bad day all around. A James McCarthy foul on Morgan Amalfitano resulted in red card shouts from West Ham, but Clattenburg only gave a yellow. The referee was happy to blow the whistle and send the teams to the dressing rooms for the break.

The question on the minds of Everton supporters at the beginning of the second half was: could Everton keep the lead and avoid second half woes that plagued the early season?

That question was answered in the 56th minute as 50th-minute substitute Mauro Zarate's shot deflected off Phil Jagielka's foot and into Tim Howard's goal to level the score.

Kevin Mirallas got a yellow card for a poor tackle, but James Tompkins' dive as he engaged Mirallas in a shoving match after was utterly shameful.

Everton made it 2-1 on a Leon Osman goal. Lukaku got the ball on a breakaway, and was taken down by James Collins as he passed to Samuel Eto'o. The referee's advantage was played allowing Eto'o's cross into Osman, who buried the winner. Osman put in a strong performace throughout the match, and deserved a goal for his day.

Five minutes of stoppage time were added on, but the Blues managed to fight off any West Ham opportunities and come away with the three points.

My Man of the Match is Leon Osman. His sublime pass in the 18th minute and the decisive goal were his highlights. Let us know in the comments if you agree or vote for another player.