After a nervy first 50 minutes, Everton came away with a brilliant win over Sunderland. Arouna Kone, Gerard Deulofeu, and Romelu Lukaku all starred in the victory, which puts the Blues up to eighth and five points off the top four.
The first 20 minutes were rather scrappy, with the low on confidence Toffees matched by the resurgent Black Cats. However, it was the home side who scored first, with Billy Jones' decision to leave Deulofeu unmarked swiftly punished. A goal kick to Kone was put through to the Spaniard, who finished when one on one with Costel Pantilimon.
Shortly afterwards, Kone made it two. The Ivorian's now flourishing link up with Lukaku was on full display as the pair moved the ball quickly before a smart finish from the edge of the box.
However, Ramiro Funes Mori and John Stones were both caught out on the break by Jermain Defoe just before half time, putting Sunderland right back in to the ding-dong encounter. John Stones attempted a last ditch tackle, but the deflection was just enough to take the ball past Tim Howard.
When Steven Fletcher beat Funes Mori to the ball in the six-yard box to make it 2-2, many will have been fearing the worst. However, the comeback appeared to make the North East outfit more confident, and as such, more open to the counter attack.
Lukaku forced an own goal from Sebastian Coates after a top-class cross by Deulofeu to make it 3-2, before scoring himself five minutes later after another brilliant ball from the Spaniard put him clean through on goal.
Kone then really started the party, hitting the back of the net to make it 5-2 from yet another counter attack. He completed his hat trick with a smart header from a sublime Lukaku cross just minutes later. These four goals in 20 minutes finished off Sunderland, and the Blues proceeded to pass the ball around them for the rest of the 90 minutes.
Kevin Mirallas maybe should have scored on a few occasions in the final ten minutes, but overall it was a brilliant performance from the Blues. Despite the poor defending for both Sunderland goals, this result genuinely raises the prospect of a good run results over the next few months.