Everton got back to winning ways with an important 3-2 victory over Fulham on Sunday afternoon, ending a run of three straight league defeats.
The Toffees needed only 40 seconds to hit the net, when Richarlison's cross from the left found the feet of Dominic Calvert-Lewin, and the England international somewhat unorthodoxly forced the ball over the line.
That lead was short-lived, as Bobby Reid pulled the hosts level with a nice finish from a Tom Cairney through ball. But the hosts' joy didn't last long, either. Calvert-Lewin tapped home to convert a Lucas Digne cross, and the Frenchman laid another on a plate for Abdoulaye Doucoure to double Everton's lead with a towering header.
Fulham were handed the chance to earn a foothold back in the game, when they were awarded a penalty, but Ivan Cavaleiro squandered the chance, slipping and blazing comically over the crossbar. Substitute Ruben Loftus-Cheek did reduce the deficit with a close-range finish mere minutes later, offering some hope.
But the Toffees held on until the final whistle, collecting a valuable three points, while Fulham remain in the thick of relegation danger.
Let's check out the player ratings from an exciting afternoon at Craven Cottage.
1. Goalkeeper & Defenders
Alphonse Areola (GK) - 6/10 - Pulled off a brilliant save to deny Richarlison. Almost dropped a cross into his own net which would have been funny. Little chance with any of the goals. Poor bloke.
Ola Aina (RB) - 5/10 - All at sea. Miles out of position for the opening goal and looked uncomfortable defending crosses at the back stick. First-half horror show killed it.
Joachim Andersen (CB) - 5/10 - Not a good day at the office. Simply decided not to bother defending crosses and became invisible at crunch time. A pitiful attempt at protecting his goalkeeper.
Tosin Adarabioyo (CB) - 5/10 - Couldn't get near Calvert-Lewin, whose movement and spring was too much for the defender. A tortured soul next to his equally clueless partner.
Antonee Robinson (LB) - 5/10 - Weak in the tackle and made little headway going forward. Looked shaken by the early goal and only recovered when Fulham began to believe late on.
Mario Lemina (CM) - 5/10 - Extremely uncomfortable in the middle of the park. Lost the ball in dangerous positions and gifted possession to Everton at every opportunity. Ex-Juventus? Crazy.
Harrison Reed (CM) - 5/10 - Composed on the ball, and always looking to feed the floating Cairney. A tough afternoon against a strong midfield and quickly became overrun as teammates crumbled.
Tom Cairney (CM) - 6/10 - The spark. Worked the ball beautifully around the pitch, and created the equaliser with some wonderful, intricate play. A luxury that perhaps this team cannot afford at the moment.
Ivan Cavaleiro (RW) - 5/10 - Never got into the game, and caused few problems on the right side. Hilariously skied his penalty. Just not to be.
Bobby Reid (ST) - 6/10 - Scuffed a simple chance from close range, which Pickford stopped. Made up for it minutes later with a great move and clinical finish. That's about it.
Ademola Lookman (LW) - 6/10 - Posed a threat down the left-hand side and put a couple of decent crosses in which came to nothing. Didn't miss a penalty this time.
Aleksandar Mitrovic (ST) - 7/10
Ruben Loftus-Cheek (CM) - 8/10
André Zambo Anguissa (CM) - 7/10
5. Goalkeeper & Defenders
Jordan Pickford (GK) - 6/10 - Did well to deny Reid's first attempt, but no such luck second time round. Beaten by the deflection for Loftus-Cheek's strike.
Ben Godfrey (CB) - 5/10 - Had a difficult time preventing the trickery and speed of Lookman. Allowed a couple of dangerous crosses to enter the box from his flank, and gave away a penalty with a clumsy challenge.
Yerry Mina (CB) - 6/10 - Not entirely convincing, and not actually a great defender. Deflected Fulham's second goal beyond Pickford with a half-hearted block.
Michael Keane (CB) - 6/10 - Caught out by Fulham's quick passing for the equaliser. Began to creak as Fulham pushed.
6. Wing-Backs & Midfielders
Alex Iwobi (RWB) - 7/10 - A box of tricks, hitting the byline and beating his marker with ease time and time again. Did his best at the defensive stuff.
Abdoulaye Doucoure (CM) - 8/10 - Constantly looking to send Everton forward. Timed his run into the area perfectly to crash a header beyond Areola. Box to box.
Allan (CM) - 7/10 - The destroyer in the midfield. Stopped Fulham progressing and never pondered on the ball. Get it, move it.
Lucas Digne (LWB) - 8/10 - Got the assist for Calvert-Lewin's second goal of the afternoon and Doucoure's first with two unstoppable balls into the box. That's what he's there for.
James Rodriguez (RW) - 8/10 - It is a pleasure to watch this man. Found his groove midway through the first half, dipping into spaces and locating teammates with his glorious passing range. Right foot, left foot, inside or outside of the boot, scooped balls over the top. Too good.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin (ST) - 8/10 - I mean, possibly the worst finish in history for the first, but once again, DCL was Mr right place, right time and able to get it over the line. Bagged his second with a perfect run and first-time finish.
Richarlison (LW) - 8/10 - Showed why Everton have been losing without him after 40 seconds. Tore his way through the defence and whipped in his cross to supply the opener. Should have put the Toffees ahead again but saw his shot saved. A menace.
Tom Davies (CM) - 6/10
Gylfi Sigurdsson (CM) - 6/10
Source : 90min