Everton moves 4th with 4-0 win over Stoke in EPL
LIVERPOOL, England (AP) — Everton provisionally moved fourth in the Premier League after thrashing Stoke 4-0 at Goodison Park on Saturday.
Gerard Deulofeu scored on his first league start with a left-footed shot from the six-yard box in the 45th before Seamus Coleman added a second four minutes after the interval.
Bryan Oviedo, replacing the injured Leighton Baines, scored on only his second league start in nearly 18 months with a low strike from outside the area to make it 3-0 in the 58th. Belgium forward Romelu Lukaku, on loan from Chelsea, grabbed a fourth at close range in the 79th.
The Toffees have 24 points from 13 games and are undefeated at home in the league throughout the calendar year. Stoke, hovering near the relegation zone, has 13 from 13.
The 19-year-old Deulofeu is on loan from Barcelona and was given his chance by Catalonia-born manager Roberto Martinez.
The first-half focus was almost entirely on Deulofeu, who produced the first and last action of the opening 45 minutes with plenty of contributions inbetween.
Having seen an early low free kick parried by Stoke goalkeeper Asmir Begovic, Deulofeu’s angled shot was also denied at the near post.
Stoke’s keeper was by far the busiest and when James McCarthy charged forward and exchanged passed with Lukaku, the Bosnia international could only watch the midfielder fire wide.
Begovic produced a brilliant double save to stop Leon Osman’s deflected shot and Lukaku’s close-range follow-up either side of another two angled efforts from Deulofeu before Lukaku headed wide from Oviedo’s cross.
The traffic was virtually one way and Stoke managed just one shot on target late in the half when Jon Walters strike from Peter Crouch’s knockdown was easily saved by Tim Howard.
Just as it appeared Everton’s dominance would go unrewarded, Deulofeu struck, cutting in from the left this time and getting the ball back via Osman and Gareth Barry to finally beat Begovic with seconds in the half remaining.
Four minutes after the break right back Coleman made it 2-0 when his mis-hit shot looped past the Stoke goalkeeper.
If Coleman’s goal was a surprise, Oviedo’s was totally unexpected. The Costa Rican collected Deulofeu’s short corner, switched the ball on to his weaker right foot and powered it home from distance.
The defender then turned provider with the cross for Lukaku to score his eighth league goal of the season from close range to add to the two he scored last weekend against Liverpool in a pulsating 3-3 Merseyside derby.