Everton 1 Chelsea 0 – Everton hang onto Sigurdsson goal to stun Chelsea
2020-21 English Premier League report: Everton vs. Chelsea – Saturday, 12 December 2020
Everton 1 Chelsea 0 – Goodison Park
Carlo Ancelotti' Toffees hung on to a first-half penalty as they downed favourites Chelsea much to the joy of 2000 fans who had returned to Goodison Park for the first time since February.
Frank Lampard's Blues who arrived at Merseyside on an unbeaten run of 17 games looked to be on the ropes early on.
Gylfi Sigurdsson set up Richarlison for the first chance of the match, but the Brazilian's tame effort went straight to Chelsea keeper Eduardo Mendy. Sigurdsson was the provider once more as his corner was headed over by Yerry Mina.
The Icelander was rewarded for his efforts in the 22nd of play when Jordan Pickford's long throw was won in the air by Dominic Calvert-Lewin who sprinted into the rival box only to be hacked down clumsily by Mendy and a penalty ensued. Sigurdsson stepped up and dispatched the spot kick to the left of the hapless Mendy to put his side into the lead.
Chelsea responded immediately when Reece James hit the post as the hosts failed to clear a corner properly and Kurt Zouma then latched onto Olivier Giroud's delivery but fired straight to Pickford.
Mount very nearly levelled within a minute of the restart when Thiago Silva's long ball was punched clear by Pickford with the Everton custodian was well out of his place. With Pickford stranded out of his goal, N'Golo Kante set up Mount but the young forward's shot grazed the crossbar.
Sigurdsson, taking on the role of the playmaker in the absence of James Rodriguez made his presence felt for the umpteenth time as he nearly got a second when he released Richarlison down the left but the latter's right-foot shot was parried away by Mendy.
Calvert-Lewin then looked to have earned a second penalty for the Toffees when he was pulled down by Ben Chilwell inside the area, but the flag had gone up for offside on the ball that played the Everton striker through.
Mount was unlucky not to have found a late goal for the visitors in the 80th minute from a free kick, when his shot had beat Pickford but came back off the far post.
Everton's problematic defending in the absence of stalwarts Seamus Coleman and Lucas Digne was made up to quite an extent by the brilliance of English No. 1 custodian Pickford whose awesome saves kept his side in the game and pull off an unexpected win. This was the Toffees second win from their last seven outings and their sixth win overall from 12 games this EPL season.
For Lampard it was bitter disappointment as Olivier Giroud failed to continue his fine goal-scoring form and was seriously let down by team-mates Kai Havertz and Timo Werner who both had a big off-day. Chelsea slipped to the fifth spot over the weekend as Leicester City and Southampton leapfrogged to the third and fourth spots respectively after registering wins in their Sunday fixtures.
Everton starting XI: Pickford (goal), Holgate, Mina, Keane, Godfrey, Doucoure, Allan, Sigurdsson, Iwobi, Calvert-Lewin, Richarlison Subs: Andre Gomes, Davies, Kenny.
Chelsea starting XI: Mendy (goal), James, Zouma, Thiago Silva, Chilwell, Kante, Kovacic, Havertz, Mount, Werner, Giroud
Man of the match: Jordan Pickford
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