Everton 2-0 West Ham: Toffees win to ease pressure on Marco Silva

Bernard beat Ricardo from a tight angle following a fine pass by Theo WalcottEverton lifted the pressure on manager Marco Silva with a deserved win over disappointing West Ham United at Goodison Park.Silva is fighting to ease doubts over his future after four straight Premier League defeats plunged Everton into the relegation zone – but…

Bernard, Everton

Bernard beat Ricardo from a tight angle following a fine pass by Theo Walcott

Everton lifted the pressure on manager Marco Silva with a deserved win over disappointing West Ham United at Goodison Park.

Silva is fighting to ease doubts over his future after four straight Premier League defeats plunged Everton into the relegation zone – but this was a vastly improved, excellent display to earn three vital points.

He made five changes from the side that lost at Burnley and was rewarded with a piece of individual brilliance from recalled Brazilian Bernard, who tricked his way into the West Ham area before beating keeper Roberto Jimenez with a clever finish after 17 minutes to set Everton on their way.

Everton had numerous opportunities to extend their advantage but Roberto produced a succession of fine saves, especially from Tom Davies and Alex Iwobi, while Richarlison hit the woodwork. It was in stoppage time that second-half substitute Gylfi Sigurdsson, dropped for the first time since he became Everton’s record £45m signing in summer 2017, ended any doubts about the outcome with a magnificent 25-yard rising right-foot drive.

West Ham were thoroughly dreadful throughout, their one moment of danger coming when Everton keeper Jordan Pickford blocked Angelo Ogbonna’s shot late on as Silva was finally able to celebrate a victory which delighted Goodison Park.

Brave Silva gets his reward

Silva took positive action with his back against the wall – so deserves full credit as Everton produced their best performance of the season to overpower woeful West Ham.

He dropped Sigurdsson, who can have no complaints after his poor form this season, pushed Richarlison into the centre and brought back Theo Walcott.

Silva reintroduced Davies into central midfield alongside Andre Gomes and gave Iwobi the number 10 role in behind the striker.

The result was an Everton performance full of energy, hard work and creativity that should have reaped a much greater victory margin than it actually did.

It was only the excellence of West Ham goalkeeper Roberto, producing a succession of fine saves and also calling on the help of the woodwork, that kept the score within reason for the Hammers.

Everton were always on the front foot, backed by a raucous Goodison Park crowd that never wavered in its support for Silva’s team.

It will take more than one win to blow away the clouds over Silva as he has reached that critical stage where one setback ratchets up the pressure again.

All the noises suggest he still needs to follow this up with a win at Brighton next Saturday and then at home to Watford in the Carabao Cup.

This, however, was exactly what he needed – namely a comprehensive, crowd-pleasing win in which Everton responded to the manager’s changes and promptings.

Wretched West Ham disappoint again

West Ham should have their sights set on the top six in this season of Premier League flux, with Spurs struggling and Chelsea, Manchester United and Arsenal in stages of relative transition.

Instead, they have an infuriating inconsistency that threatens to derail those aspirations once more.

Yes, they can throw in the occasional excellent victory as they did against Manchester United – although that currency is devalued these days – but then they are humiliated in the Carabao Cup at League One Oxford United, lose at home to Crystal Palace then deliver this shocking show at Goodison Park.

If they had come near snatching a point here, it would have been an act of grand larceny.

Manager Manuel Pellegrini stood motionless in his technical area, actions mirrored by most of his team as they lacked energy, ideas and threat.

Only keeper Roberto emerged with any sort of credit in what was a display lacking heart and competitive edge.

If those top-six hopes are to be realised, they cannot perform like this on many more occasions.

Man of the Match – Theo Walcott (Everton)

Theo Walcott was unlucky not to make the scoresheet against the Hammers, registering seven shots in total – including a thunderous drive against the crossbar in the second half

Home comforts for Toffees – the stats

  • Everton’s last six Premier League wins have all come at Goodison Park; the Toffees have won seven of their last nine home league matches (W7 D0 L2).
  • West Ham suffered their first away Premier League defeat of the season (W1 D3 L1), leaving only Liverpool and Sheffield United unbeaten away from home this season.
  • Everton have won more Premier League games against West Ham than against any other side (26).
  • Two of Bernard’s three Premier League goals for Everton have been scored against West Ham United, also netting against the Hammers in March 2019 at London Stadium.
  • Everton’s Theo Walcott has been involved in 10 Premier League goals against West Ham (six goals, four assists) – against no side has he been involved in more (also 10 against Newcastle and Tottenham).
  • Gylfi Sigurdsson has scored 21 Premier League goals from outside the box since his debut in January 2012; only Christian Eriksen (22) has scored more from outside the box in the competition.
  • Theo Walcott had seven shots without scoring for Everton in this game, the most he’s ever had without scoring in a Premier League match in what was his 327th appearance.

‘I was always calm’ – what the managers said

Everton manager Marco Silva, speaking to Match of the Day: “The quality we showed this afternoon was the main thing for me. There were some very good individual performances in our team, but as a collective we did very well too.

“In our last games we probably didn’t achieve what we deserved, to be honest. But the players know we have full confidence in them. It was a must-win game for us and we did that.

“I know what I’m doing, I have full confidence in the staff and full confidence in my players as well. Of course it’s better when you win games, but I was always calm.”

West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini: “I am disappointed because I think we had a good performance. The position of Everton showed how much they needed the points. I remember the last game we played here the teams were in a similar position.

“Today they just gave more than we did, they gave more than 100%, we did not. I spoke with the players after the game, they know my thoughts. Goodison Park is always a difficult place to come but I was not completely happy with the performance.”

What’s next?

Everton travel to Brighton in their next Premier League game on Saturday, 26 October (kick-off 15:00 BST), while West Ham host Sheffield united at the London Stadium at the same time.

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