Demarai Gray impressed yet again while Dominic Calvert-Lewin also scored as Everton beat Brighton & Hove Albion 2-0 at the Amex Stadium.
While Brighton had more of the ball in the early stages of the game, the hosts hardly offered any kind of threat going forward. Instead, it was Everton who looked dangerous each time they broke to attack, with the pace of Demarai Gray and Andros Townsend causing problems. And eventually, the Toffees took the lead, with Gray scoring a fine goal after making a driving run into the box in the 41st minute.
Everton doubled their lead thirteen minutes into the second half, with Dominic Calvert-Lewin making no mistake from the penalty spot after Seamus Coleman had been brought down inside the Brighton box. While the Seagulls had a moment or two where they threatened, they never really looked like bothering their visitors as Everton held on for a comfortable win.
The result means that the Toffees have collected seven points from an available nine under new manager Rafael Benitez and are now unbeaten in four games across all competitions. Here are our player ratings following a solid win for Everton at the Amex Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Jordan Pickford: 6.5/10
While there were iffy moments here and there, he largely dealt with whatever came his way, making a couple of important stops in the second half to preserve his team’s advantage on the afternoon.
Seamus Coleman: 7/10
Looked good whenever he pushed forward on the right flank and took up some dangerous positions in the first half. Won the foul from Joel Veltman leading to the penalty for 2-0 in the second period.
Mason Holgate: 7/10
Starting ahead of Yerry Mina who picked up an injury, Holgate put in a solid display at the heart of the Everton defence. Strong in the air and on the ground, the centre-back produced quite a few important blocks and interventions. Played out of the back well too.
Michael Keane: 6.5/10
Comfortable and untroubled for most parts of the contest on the day, the England international played his part in Everton keeping Brighton at bay and securing a clean sheet. Won his fair share of aerial battles.
Lucas Digne: 6.5/10
Energetic and purposeful as usual getting up and down the left flank, although his crossing was not much of a threat on the afternoon. But did impress with his defensive work, ensuring Brighton had no joy.
Andros Townsend: 7/10
Andros Townsend's stats vs Brighton:
Touches – 50
Shots – 1
On target – 1
Successful passes – 20
Successful att. third passes – 8
Chances created – 1
Pass accuracy – 87%
Recoveries – 8
Successful tackles – 4
Fouls won – 4
Successful dribbles – 1
Shots blocked – 1#EFC #BHAEVE
— EFC Statto (@EFC_Statto) August 28, 2021
Starting ahead of Alex Iwobi, the summer signing was sharp and purposeful going forward and diligent in his duties off the ball. Went close with an effort. Showed his experience and leadership to diffuse the penalty situation after Richarlison argued to take the spot-kick.
Impressive in the middle of the park, the Brazilian not only shielded the backline effectively, cutting out moves before they developed but also offered plenty of quality on the ball as well. Got the assist for the opener with a nice through ball and had a hand in the buildup leading to the penalty for the second one as well.
Abdoulaye Doucoure: 7/10
Seems to be working well alongside Allan, with the Brazilian’s presence allowing Doucoure to push forward and add numbers close to the opposition box. Tracked back well when needed to and even forced a save in the second half.
Demarai Gray: 8/10
Can we just talk about Everton picking up Demarai Gray from Bayer Leverkusen for just £1.5 million.
Bargain of the summer? pic.twitter.com/PoBXh6KmMi
— SPORTbible (@sportbible) August 28, 2021
In a short time, the Englishman is proving to be quite a bargain for Everton, having been one of their better players in the early parts of the season. Looked like a threat each time the Toffees broke on the counter and got a well-deserved goal after making a driving run into the box before firing the ball into the back of the net to put his team in front.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin: 7/10
Not many chances came his way on the afternoon but the England international kept at it. Did well to score from the penalty spot under pressure to bag three points for his team. Taken off in the second half as a precaution after a knock.
Lively as usual at times but flitted in and out of the game without really making much of a major impact. The most memorable moment of the game for the Brazilian came when he argued to take the penalty and reacted poorly to his teammates pulling rank.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin has three goals in three games… but Richarlison wasn't completely happy with that! 👀
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) August 28, 2021
Alex Iwobi: 7/10
Replaced Calvert-Lewin for the final twenty minutes and put up a fine cameo. Some neat skills, pace on the break, looked dangerous for the duration he was on the field.
Andre Gomes: N/A
On for Gray in the 81st minute to make his first league appearance of the season.