Everton vs Crystal Palace: Toffees storm back to avoid relegation

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Everton vs Crystal Palace: The Toffees saved themselves from relegation and secured another season in the Premier League, as they came back to beat the Eagles 3-2 at Goodison Park on Thursday.

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The victory puts Everton on 39 points, 16th in the Premier League table, four points clear of 18th-place Leeds United with one game left to play. Everton will be in the top flight of English football next season, for the 69th straight season (1954).

Jean-Philippe Mateta put Crystal Palace ahead after 21 minutes, followed by the second from Jordan Ayew in the 36th. Michael Keane pulled a goal back for Everton not long after halftime, before Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewis each scored inside the final quarter-hour. Play was briefly halted after hundreds of Everton fans stormed the field at Goodison Park following Calvert-Lewin’s goal, in the 85th minute.


Everton vs Crystal Palace final score, stats, results

Final score: Everton 3, Crystal Palace 2

Goal scorers: Everton (Keane 54′, Richarlison 75′, Calvert-Lewin 85′), Crystal Palace (Mateta 21′, Ayew 36′)

Shots: Everton 12, Crystal Palace 7

Shots on target: Everton 6, Crystal Palace 5

Possession: Everton 43%, Crystal Palace 57%


3 things we learned – Everton vs Crystal Palace

1. Relegation battle down to two teams: Exhale, Everton fans, for you are safe from relegation. It’s now down to Burnley (35 points – GD -18) and Leeds (35 points – GD -38), as we head to Championship Sunday with oh so much still to play for.

2. Breaks go against Everton early: With precious little doubt, Ayew should have been sent off for a dangerous scissor tackle on Anthony Gordon in the 34th minute, thus he wouldn’t have been on the field to score his goal barely 45 seconds later. When you’re teetering on the edge of relegation, it’s hard not to see a moment and decision like that as anything but a bad omen.

3. Everton find joy after going direct: For 45 minutes, Everton were incredibly poor in possession (35 percent, while completing just 67 percent of their passing attempts). It was quite clear that Frank Lampard’s halftime tactical adjustments boiled down to: “Forget the possession and trying to pass, just get it upfield as quick as we can and make something happen.” Dominic Calvert-Lewis was targeted on long balls, Abdoulaye Doucoure was pushed higher up the field as a target and second-ball winner, bypassing Crystal Palace’s problematic press altogether. It wasn’t pretty, but it was as fluid and effective as the Everton attack has been at any point this season.


Everton vs Crystal Palace highlights

Jean-Philippe Mateta heads Crystal Palace into the lead (goal video)

Jordan Ayew scores hilarious goal seconds after escaping red card (goal video)

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Michael Keane lashes home an Everton lifeline (goal video)

Richarlison hooks home an equalizer with plenty of time left (goal video)

Dominic Calvert-Lewis diving header puts Everton ahead late on (goal video)