Whew, what a game that was!
Apart from a quiet-ish half an hour after the break, this was an excellent spectacle of a football match, with both attacking units in fine form and defences having questions asked of them that they didn’t quite answer either.
It got off to a breathless start, with the Blues pressing high and causing a turnover as lifelong Liverpool supporter and Wolves captain Connor Coady made a poor backpass to Rui Patricio who was unable to clear well and Richarlison came steaming in to slot it home, 1-0.
However, Everton’s biggest problem with Wolves since last season has been the pace of their wide players, and their ability to get high crosses into the box. Adama Traore and Lucas Digne was going to be a battle to watch, and in the first quarter of the game the fullback was consistently getting beaten to the ball every time Wolves went down that way.
A Traore centre through the six-yard box was only partly cleared by Seamus Coleman and Roman Saiss was on hand to stab home. Game on.
But then the Blues struck right back, Richarlison finding Gylfi Sigurdsson free down the right, and his delicious cross into the box was met by Alex Iwobi in a replica of his midweek winning goal against Lincoln City, 2-1!
Everton kept the Wolves quiet for most of the second half, but then late on concentration broke while defending and it allowed the visitors to tie it up again. A long throw into the box, a Wolves staple, saw Boly beat Delph to it, his header fell to Jimenez who got to the ball a split-second before Digne and 2-2 it was.
And then Richarlison took over! First an incredible flying header to get over Boly and head into the far corner to make it 3-2, and then won two late yellow cards to kill off the game on the right wing.
Some random thoughts in no particular order -
Having Kean and Iwobi in the lineup allows Sigurdsson to really show off his crossing ability.
Looks like the blueprint to keep the Everton fullbacks quiet is to pin them back with fast wide players.
Sigurdsson’s work rate in the middle was impressive, making contributions both attacking and defending.
Delph is such a cool and collected customer in the middle of the park. Definitely getting a good idea of what he brings to the Blues, and it’s good.
Mina and Keane still have some communication issues, but will get better.
Traore made Digne look really bad early on, strange why Nuno Santo abandoned that path when it was working so well.
Wolves definitely feeling the European hangover, five changes to their side today and it showed.