Everton sleepwalked through parts of their last match before the winter break, but two moments of incredible individual quality were enough to see out a dire Crystal Palace side. Dominic Calvert-Lewin would add an insurance tap-in near full time.
Theo Walcott and Bernard combined for a lovely team goal in the first half before Richarlison enshrined Gary Cahill as a traffic cone in the second half. Sandwiched in between was a truly horrific concession by Jordan Pickford that made the game closer than it needed to be. Questions about the English goalkeeper’s performance are growing louder and quite frankly with good reason.
After creating the first goal today and winning the match against Watford, Walcott was unfortunate to pick up an injury shortly after Bernard’s volley. Theo’s been in much improved form compared to his awful 2018-19 season and actually made an impact from his right wing position. With Alex Iwobi still nursing his knock, the wing positions could become pretty thin pretty quick for Carlo Ancelotti.
Old friend James McCarthy received an ovation on his return to Goodison Park, but it was Morgan Schneiderlin who was the standout midfielder on the day. Much like Walcott, the Frenchman looks rejuvenated under a new regime and may have an argument for starting alongside Andre Gomes even when Fabian Delph returns from suspension.
Everton head into their holiday in 7th place, having earned the 2nd most points in the league since Ancelotti was appointed. A European place is technically within view, and it’s very difficult to complain about that considering the eight ball the club were put behind by Marco Silva.
Carlo Magnifico. Carlo Fantastico.