Both clubs came into Friday’s meeting with a lot to play for, but finishes on both sides of halftime forced Everton and Crystal Palace to settle for a 1-1 draw at Goodison Park.
The visitors pulled level just five minutes after the halftime whistle as Christian Benteke rose to meet Joel Ward’s cross. The summer signing did well to generate enough power to nod the ball towards the far post, but Palace nearly took the lead just minutes later.
Ward was at it again down the right flank in the 56th minute, when he played in a perfect cross to Damien Delaney. Despite another timely header and finish, the goal was called back for offsides, keeping the two teams level once more.
Romelu Lukaku‘s first PL free kick goal gave the hosts a thrilling lead before halftime as the Belgian striker put Everton ahead in the 35th minute.
Palace wasn’t too thrilled with the decision to award the set piece after the half hour had gone, but Damien Delaney was the man called for the foul on Phil Jagielka just outside of the penalty area.
The Toffees move up to third place in the PL with Friday’s result, while Palace remain seventh on 11 points.Follow @MattReedFutbol