Despite falling by a trio of goals, the Blues got things going in the first 10 minutes. Teenage winger Hanna Bennison hit a long-range effort, but West Ham goalie Anna Leat got a strong hand on the ball, and the touch was enough to push the ball off the crossbar.
In the 24’, Kenza Dali broke on the counter-attack up the middle. The French winger found Anna Anvegård, but the Swede’s curling shot lost steam through the defense and was collected by Leat.
Six minutes later, the Toffees again hit woodwork. This time, left back Poppy Pattinson picked out Valérie Gauvin inside the box. But even though Gauvin managed to get her head on the ball, the attempt rang off the crossbar.
With the Blues threatening, West Ham turned things around in the 36’. Lisa Evans ripped a shot towards net, but goalkeeper Sandy MacIver dove low to deny the Scottish midfielder’s strike.
However, MacIver couldn’t do anything to keep out the opening goal on the stroke of halftime. A ball was played across the face of goal and redirected by Kateřina Svitková, and the ball slipped in off Everton defender Danielle Turner.
The Hammers put two more past Everton’s defense before the full-time whistle sounded, scoring in the 57’ and the 86’.
A glance at the score makes the Toffees out to have been easy prey for West Ham, but the contest was closer than the score indicated. Everton gave the game away in the second half after failing to convert on two golden opportunities, but they worked more total shots and won the possession battle.
The most damning stat from the afternoon: West Ham scored three goals from four shots on target.
Other than the international break in early January, Everton had plenty of time to deal with any lingering knocks. In other words, injuries can’t be blamed for another poor performance.
Of the many issues that have plagued the Merseyside outfit this season, the most glaring is the lack of goals. Last year, Everton scored the fifth-most goals in the league and netted an average of 1.8 goals per game. This year, the Blues have the fourth-fewest markers and average just 0.8 goals per game with nine tallies in 11 fixtures. To make matters worse, Simone Magill — who leads the team with two goals — is the lone player to have scored more than once.
With half the campaign played, Everton is just seven points ahead of Birmingham City in the relegation spot. The Toffees are 3-2-6 and have secured 11 points in league play. The Liverpool-based club returns to play on Feb. 6 against Reading.