Brentford staged a stunning fightback to secure a 3-2 victory against Everton whose relegation fears were deepened at Goodison Park in the Premier League on Sunday.
The hosts knew a win would secure their Premier League status ahead of next season, with Leeds only managing a draw at home to Brighton earlier in the day, meaning the Yorkshire club could not catch Frank Lampard’s men if they were to win on Merseyside.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s close-range finish and Richarlison’s penalty came either side of a Seamus Coleman own goal in a frantic first half, which saw the Toffees take a 2-1 lead into the break, despite Jarrad Branthwaite seeing red for a last man foul on Ivan Toney.
Brentford refused to lie down and turned the game on its head with two quickfire goals in as many second half minutes. Yoane Wissa and Rico Henry headed home from close-range to secure all three points, deepening Everton’s relegation woes with the race for survival rumbling on towards the final day.
Everton have two games to secure their Premier League status, starting with the visit of Crystal Palace to Goodison Park on Thursday evening. As for Brentford, they welcome Leeds United to west London on the final day, knowing their opponents will also be battling to avoid the dreaded drop.
Chance Gone Begging. Everybody who watched this game will need to step outside and take a moment to digest the events that unfolded. Five goals, two straight red cards but most importantly, a chance gone begging for Everton. Burnley were beaten by Spurs and Leeds only drew with Brighton; the stage was set for the Toffees who knew that a win would have secured their Premier League status. In the blink of an eye, that safety quickly returned to vulnerability. One card leaves you in trouble, two can you leave stranded. The manner and speed at which the game got away from Everton will be a concern, but they cannot dwell. Their next game at home to Crystal Palace carries even more importance after this result with just two games left for the Toffees to haul themselves out of a sticky spot.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Rico Henry. From the get-go, the Brentford full-back was a thorn in Everton’s side. He was constantly looking to put balls into the box for the Brentford attackers and it was his crosses which they scored from. Henry himself turned defence into attack, charging forward to latch onto a cross and head the winning goal for his team. Henry was energetic, working hard to get up and down the pitch and got his just deserves with the decisive goal. A solid and established performance which helped Brentford move up to 11th on their first season in the Premier League, with one game still to play and a top half finish still very much within reach.
Everton: Pickford 6, Coleman 6, Mykolenko 6, Holgate 6, Branthwaite 5, Doucoure 6, Gomes 6, Iwobi 6, Gordon 6, Richarlison 7, Calvert-Lewin 6.
Subs: Kenny 5, Gray 5, Rondon 3.
Brentford: Raya 7, Ajer 7, Jansson 7, Sorensen 6, Henry 8, Jensen 7, Norgaard 7, Eriksen 7, Mbeumo 7, Toney 7, Wissa 7.
Subs: Dasilva 5, Janelt 6, Roerslev 5.
10’ GOAL! EVERTON 1-0 BRENTFORD (CALVERT-LEWIN) – The deadlock has been broken and it’s Everton who have the lead! Gordon won a free kick on the right-hand side. He delivered the cross which was met by Richarlison who helped the ball across Raya and into the opposite corner. Did Calvert-Lewin get the final touch there though? The fans don’t care, first blood to the Blues!
18’ RED CARD FOR BRANTHWAITE (EVERTON) – Wow, that is a major blow for Everton. Branthwaite has been caught the wrong side of Toney, bringing him to the ground before he could race through on goal. The defender left referee Michael Oliver with no choice, it seems, but to brandish the red card. Everton are down to ten men and this will be a huge test of character for the Toffees.
37’ GOAL! EVERTON 1-1 BRENTFORD (COLEMAN OG) – Brentford have been growing into the game and make their pressure tell with an equaliser which has gone down as an own goal by Coleman. Toney flashed the ball across goal and the chance seemed to have gone. However, Wissa picked the ball up and whipped it back into the danger zone, the cross-come-shot took a deflection off Coleman and flashed past Pickford into the net. We are back on level terms!
45+2’ GOAL! EVERTON 2-1 BRENTFORD (RICHARLISON) – Richarlison wins a penalty and dispatches it too! The Brazilian goes high and down the middle, sending Raya the wrong way and restoring Everton’s lead just before the break. If it wasn’t Richarlison’s goal for the first, it certainly is now!
62’ GOAL! EVERTON 2-2 BRENTFORD (WISSA) – There it is, Brentford are back on level terms and that is Wissa’s goal! A corner is whipped into the near post, Wissa rises highest and flicks the ball up and over Pickford and into the far corner of the net. We are all square once again!
64’ GOAL! EVERTON 2-3 BRENTFORD (HENRY) – What a turnaround from Brentford, they have taken the lead courtesy of Henry who has been lively today! Norgaard’s ball picks out the run of Henry who nods past Pickford to stun the Everton faithful into silence.
87’ RED CARD FOR RONDON! (EVERTON) – Unbelievable! Rondon has been on the pitch for a matter of minutes and the frontman has been given a straight red card, Everton’s second of the match! It was a dangerous tackle on Henry with two feet off the ground. The home side are down to nine men