Theo Walcott

Bournemouth relegated despite solid win at Everton

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Everton – Bournemouth: Eddie Howe’s Cherries were relegated to the Championship but went out on a winning note with a 3-1 win over Carlo Ancelotti’s unsteady Everton at Goodison Park on Sunday.

Joshua King had a goal and an assist to join Junior Stanislas and Dominic Solanke on the scoreboard as Bournemouth’s 34 points are one point shy of safety.

[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]

Bournemouth finished with better goal differential than the surviving Aston Villa.

Everton finishes on a down note, Moise Kean scoring the Toffees only goal to seal 12th place for the hosts.


Two things we learned

1. Too little, too late for Howe’s oft-skidding Cherries: Eddie Howe is a Bournemouth legend, even if it turns out that his plan has become stale (We’ll find out next season in the Championship if he doesn’t opt out of the Vitality Stadium). But after losing just three times through 11 matches this season, the Cherries had three losing skids of four matches or more, one of which came inside of a nine-match winless run between February and July (that’s a weird sentence. Thanks pandemic).

2. Ancelotti gets out the checkbook: Everton’s legendary boss would’ve wanted to see his players respond to some poor results down the stretch and they barely mustered that. There are pieces worth liking but the Toffees’ aims are much higher than even midtable and they need massive help in midfield and an upgrade in goal. Big chances are coming to Goodison.

Man of the Match

King — Playing wide he was the MOTM but this is so bittersweet as he just did not finish his chances this year. Just one more might’ve been enough.

Everton – Bournemouth recap

Richarlison handled the ball in the Everton box and King converted the penalty to make it 1-0.

Aaron Ramsdale made a huge save to keep it 1-0 when Theo Walcott stormed into the box in the 17th.

Kean ran to the back post to meet a Walcott pass before halftime, but Solanke headed a Diego Rico free kick home to restore the Cherries’ lead heading into halftime.

King assisted substitute Stanislas with 10 minutes to go but West Ham would do Bournemouth no favors and the Cherries will go to the second tier.

Everton gets GDS goal to snare point from hard-luck Villa

Everton - Aston Villa recap
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The watch buzzed and Villa’s hearts sank, as stumbling Everton came back to take a point from Villa in a 1-1 draw at Goodison Park on Thursday.

Theo Walcott’s late header crossed the line just before Ezri Konsa could clear it, minutes after the Villa defender had given his club a dramatic late lead and hope of avoiding the drop.

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The point moves 19th-place Villa three back of Watford and West Ham, who play each other on Friday. Villa plays Arsenal and West Ham to complete its PL fixture list, and is also behind Bournemouth on goal differential.

Everton’s 46th point comes from its 10th draw. The Toffees need to win out and have Burnley lose out to finish top half.


Three things we learned

1. Konsa saves his best for first: Twenty-two year old center back Ezri Konsa’s first Premier League goal was an impactful one. The ex-Charlton and Brentford man lunged to redirect Hourihane’s free kick home late for a deserved goal as Villa dominated the shots totals. If he clawed Walcott’s equalizer off the line he’d be in line for possible pub grub naming in Birmingham.

2. Ancelotti’s summer-long headache: Legendary Italian manager Carlo Ancelotti knows he has his work cut out for him as the Toffees continued to wobble to the Premier League finish line. Realistically how many players can be expected to stay and start for Ancelotti next year? Richarlison, Mason Holgate, and Lucas Digne? Michael Keane, Seamus Coleman, and Dominic Calvert-Lewin? Surely there’s change coming to Goodison Park.

3. Who will Villa support on Friday? Villa is now three points back of West Ham and Watford before the two sides meet on Friday, and Dean Smith’s men will tangle with West Ham on the last day of the season. Does Villa root for a draw to keep both teams within focus or just go full-on anti-Irons? We’re betting the latter.

Man of the Match

Grealish and Konsa were both good but Douglas Luiz was a huge part of the win. He won all 10 of his duels for Villa, according to SofaScore, drawing three fouls and completing all four of his dribbles.

Everton – Aston Villa recap

Villa had some moments in the first dozen minutes including a Mohamed Elmohamady cross that was absent receiver in the 12th.

Another Elmohamady cross was popped over the bar by Mbwana Samatta in the 15th.

Everton then lost center back Mason Holgate to an apparent leg injury.

[ MORE: Premier League stats ]

Villa’s key man, no surprise, was Jack Grealish. The Villans aimed to find him on the left more often than not, and Grealish cut in for right-footed shots on multiple occasions.

Yet wit Grealish standing over a dead ball, the visitors would go ahead through Konsa’s flick of a Conor Hourihane-taken free kick to wrongfoot Jordan Pickford.

It should’ve been 2-0 off a delightful Grealish cross to the back post that Anwar El Ghazi chopped over the bar under pressure from a charging Pickford.

Andre Gomes set up Dominic Calvert-Lewin for an 86th-minute shot wide of the near post. It was foreshadowing, as Walcott’s looping header defying Reina and the flying boot of Konsa to ring as a goal on Anthony Taylor’s Goal Decision System watch.

Everton overcomes two-goal deficit, red card to beat Watford

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Watford’s bid to leave the drop zone was canceled out in unlikely fashion as resolute 10-man Everton scored a 3-2 comeback win at Vicarage Road on Saturday.

Adam Masina and Roberto Pereyra helped Watford to two-goal lead, but unlikely hero Yerry Mina scored twice in first half stoppage time for Everton.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Theo Walcott scored late as Everton overcame Fabian Delph‘s sending-off to secure three points and ninth place on the table.

Watford sits 19th, two points off the safe spaces.

Three things we learned

1. Ancelotti’s contending Everton doesn’t quit: Down 2-0 away to Watford, Everton ironically showed how different they’ve become since firing former Hornets boss Marco Silva for Carlo Ancelotti. Mina stepped up with two clutch goals before the break. Delph’s second yellow card might’ve been reason to doubt the outcome, but the Toffees truly deserved all three points and Walcott delivered the goods. Everton is now a factor in the race for Europa League places.

2. Goalkeepers struggle: Ben Foster is one of the most consistent goalkeepers in this generation of Premier League backstops, and Jordan Pickford is England’s No. 1. You wouldn’t imagine either of those things are true in this five-goal match, which saw seven shots on target but just two saves (both from Foster). Woof.

3. Mina brace comes out nowhere: Mina entered first half stoppage time with one Premier League goal in 36 appearances for Everton. He left with three in what was a miniature version of Newcastle’s stunning second half comeback through Florian Lejeune.

Man of the Match: It’s Mina.

Gerard Deulofeu continued his remarkable return to form by setting up Masina’s goal, and the Hornets doubled their advantage through two other usual suspects.

Pereyra took advantage of a poor clearance and some quick thinking from Troy Deeney, cutting into the box to make it 2-0.

But hold on! Mina scored twice in four minutes of stoppage time, the first a close-range finish and the second an unmarked header.

[ MORE: Premier League stats ] 

Fabian Delph put hopes of any or all the points in the balance with a second yellow card in the 71st minute.

Remarkably, the Toffees got the winner. Moise Kean was the playmaker for Walcott’s stoppage-time winner.

Everton’s potential meets ‘sense of urgency’ in win

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Everton again tantalized the league with a complete performance on Saturday, opening the door to the possibility that Marco Silva‘s side finally gets it.

[ RECAP: Everton 2-0 West Ham ]

Theo Walcott said his side was ready to go from Moment No. 1 at Goodison Park, where a 2-0 win over West Ham United could’ve been doubled on another day.

“The sense of urgency was what we needed,” Walcott said.

“The game felt like we need to start taking our chances, we had so many. It showed how good we can be going forwards. We know the quality in the team, we know what to expect from each other.”

That urgency needs to come each week, and Marco Silva has borne the brunt of the blame for his side’s inability to deliver on a weekly basis.

The manager said the win was not a matter of his men showing up in his defense.

“It’s not that the players delivered for me,” he said on NBCSN. “We are a group who are a team. I’m big proud of them that we played football. This is how we worked from the first day since I joined the club. When I see them express themselves on the pitch like I saw this afternoon, that’s the main thing for me. The quality we showed from the first minute, the intensity, the pace… Very good performance, and the crowd was really good as well.”

With another nice run of schedule the next few weeks, the Toffees will have a chance to prove themselves a contender.

The Toffees are away to Brighton before a winnable League Cup match versus Watford, and that competition is something that could help Silva put a feather in his cap. Spurs then visit before match-ups with Norwich City and Southampton. Surely there are points there if Everton is anywhere near its potential.

Of course, given Everton’s problems finding any semblance of consistency this season, that’s easier said than done.

“There was a real purpose to our game today,” said Gylfi Sigurdsson.

Now replicate it.

Everton’s Silva: ‘It is concerning about the goals we didn’t score’

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Like in the two games leading into Friday night, Everton have done their part in creating clear-cut chances.

They haven’t done their part in finishing, however. A major point of concern for manager Marco Silva following his side’s 2-0 loss against Aston Villa. From the BBC:

“It is really difficult to see how we can lose this game when we create so many chances to score. It is a tough place to play football.”

The Toffees have now outshot all three opponents they’ve faced this season (34-21), but have only a goal to speak for their attacking dominance. Against Villa, Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Theo Walcott squandered ideal chances in the first and second halves, respectively. In the minutes following his Everton debut, Alex Iwobi was the closest to converting for the visitors, hitting the post in the closing minutes of the match.

Silva, as critical as ever before, acknowledges that despite his team succeeding when it comes to creating chances, they desperately need to move the ball past the white line.

“The most difficult thing is to create and when you do you have to put the ball in the net,” the 42-year-old added. “It is concerning about the goals we didn’t score and of course we should score more. Against Palace we created lots of chances to score and didn’t and again today.”

With a challenging bout against Wolves at Goodison Park next on the schedule, the Portuguese will certainly look to tinker his attack to improve the team’s poor conversion rate. Despite falling to score 10 yards in, Iwobi contributed positively for Everton at Villa Park. Moise Kean, still adjusting to the rigors of the league, can be another prudent option to consider.

Luckily, Everton have time – and a match against Lincoln City midweek – to weigh their options. Silva, as he clearly explained at Villa Park, would want the goals to come in sooner rather than later.