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Everton 0-2 Man United: Devils leapfrog Chelsea - FCNaija

EPL By: Linus Onyeze | 01/01/2018

Manchester United endured a difficult first half to beat Everton 2-0 at Goodison park in the Premier League on New Year’s Day.

The Red Devils, who had drawn their last three Premier League games, were poor in the first half, but were inspired by lovely goals by Anthony Martial and Jesse Lingard to seal the win over the Tofees, who suffered their second defeat under Sam Allardyce.

Going into this clash, both sides needed to win to get back on track, even though Everton could have made do with a draw after losing their first game under Sam Allardyce at the weekend. And it started as one would expect, with both sides going at it.

However, there were no real chances being created by either side, even though there was lots of movements in and around both goal areas.

The first real chance of the game only came in the 24th minute, when Oumar Niasse had a good goalscoring opportunity, as he found some space inside the box and got in a strike, but the shot was brilliantly blocked by one of the defending players sliding in.

It continued to prove to be a game that had lots of intent, but with little by way of proper chances created by both sides. There were a few saves made by David De Gea and Jordan Pickford, but not strong enough to threaten their respective teams and both of them would go into the break with clean sheets.

With the start of the second half, United upped the tempo and tried to peg Everton back a lot more, and within the opening minutes, there were a couple of good chances created. Two minutes after the restart, Juan Mata received a pass and tried his luck with a shot from 23 metres out. Jordan Pickford pulled off a decent save to stop the effort going into the top of the net.

Two minutes later, Mata had another opportunity and this time the Tofees were only saved by the woodwork, as his effort went off the crossbar. What a chance.

And on 57 minutes, United had their goal. Martial perfectly collected a pass on the edge of the penalty area from Paul Pogba, then produced a nice strike into the right side of the goal.

Everton weren’t dormant, to be fair, but it was United all the way in the second period and shortly after that chance, they had another when Pogba went on a mazy run, skipped past two defenders and pulled the trigger in front of the keeper but Pickford made a great save to deny his effort directed under the crossbar.

But at this point, Everton started showing more intent and asking more questions of the Red Devils as they came close on a couple of occasions, even it was without luck, but they kept asking some serious questions.

And as the game progressed, Niasse received a lofted pass in the goal area and unleashed a dangerous header which sails narrowly wide of the right post!

On 71 minutes, Lingard receives a clever pass and shot from mid-range. His shot looked like it was going in the bottom right corner, but Pickford had other ideas and made a brilliant save.

But the Everton goalkeeper would fail to stop Lingard this time, as the United star, as he made a lovely run weaving his way through the defence before taking a shot from the edge of the box that went inside the right post! What an amazing goal!

The win sees United climb back to second, pending the outcome of Chelsea’s clash with
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