Monday 22 July 2019

Sigurdsson stunner leaves former club Swansea in mire

Swansea City's Tammy Abraham in action with Everton's Mason Holgate. Photo: Peter Powell/Reuters
Swansea City's Tammy Abraham in action with Everton's Mason Holgate. Photo: Peter Powell/Reuters

Steven Sutcliffe

Everton's resurgence under Sam Allardyce continued as they swept Swansea City aside to move to ninth in the Premier League.

Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Gylfi Sigurdsson and Wayne Rooney secured the points for Everton, who are now unbeaten in six games having recovered from falling behind to Leroy Fer's goal in the 35th minute.

While Merseyside was blanketed by fog, there is now none of the smoke that was billowing out of Goodison Park when Everton reconsidered their managerial situation in favour of Sam Allardyce just over three weeks ago.

Having wasted too long peering over their shoulders, a run of three victories and a draw had delivered more points than the club managed in their previous dozen outings.

Swansea's direction of travel has been all the more disconcerting, though at times entirely of their own making. Their cause appeared to be hindered here when their opening offensive ended the evening of main forward, Wilfried Bony.

Clash

Swansea City's Kyle Naughton in action. Photo: Martin Rickett/PA Wire
Swansea City's Kyle Naughton in action. Photo: Martin Rickett/PA Wire

The Ivorian's dash down the right after four minutes succeeded in shaking the home defence but also resulted in a muscle injury.

A deft flick from Rooney brought a conclusion to a subdued opening as Everton went on the offensive. Calvert-Lewin then tested Lukasz Fabianski with a low daisy cutter.

The visitors retained a threat on the counter-attack, though. Luciano Narsingh's give-and-go with Tammy Abraham opened the space in front of him.

But as he raced clear and checked back inside, he slashed wildly with his left foot when precision was essential. Aaron Lennon was guilty of the same offence at the opposite end.

Swansea made the most of that let-off by scoring the opening goal in the 35th minute. Tom Carroll's corner evaded a clutch of defenders and the unmarked Fer swept home.

It was defending unbefitting of an Allardyce team but Everton restored parity in first-half injury time. Rooney's inventive touch released Lennon and, when his darting run was halted by a clumsy tackle from Roque Mesa, the hosts earned their sixth penalty of the campaign - the most awarded to any top-flight club so far.

When Rooney's spot-kick was pushed onto a post by Fabianski, Calvert-Lewin followed up to dispatch the rebound.

Everton's second goal arrived in the 64th minute. Rooney was again the catalyst. This time he collected Tom Davies's pass in midfield before fizzing a pass to Sigurdsson on the left.

Everton's Dominic Calvert-Lewin (right) has a shot on goal. Photo: Martin Rickett/PA Wire
Everton's Dominic Calvert-Lewin (right) has a shot on goal. Photo: Martin Rickett/PA Wire

The Icelander has endured a slow start to life at Goodison since his record-breaking £45 million move from Swansea in the summer but, drifting inside, he dispatched a glorious curling shot from 20 yards to register his fourth goal of the campaign.

Everton's third settled nerves and the outcome.

Like their first it came from the right and then the penalty spot. This time, though, replays showed that Paul Clement's team were justifiably aggrieved, with Martin Olsson's foul on Jonjoe Kenny occurring just outside the penalty area.

Rooney again stepped forward and this time he emphatically fired his 11th goal of the season. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Telegraph.co.uk

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