Everton ended their recent losing run in emphatic fashion on Saturday afternoon, having claimed a convincing 3-0 win over Crystal Palace at Goodison Park, following what was an impressive display from Frank Lampard’s side.
Having slipped to a third Premier League defeat in a row following their midweek loss to Newcastle United, the Toffees bounced back in style yesterday as goals from Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Dwight McNeil, either side of a poacher’s finish from Anthony Gordon, sealed a much needed three points for the hosts.
That goal for the latter man was particularly timely as the young Englishman had failed to score since netting in the draw with Leeds United at Elland Road back in late August, with this latest strike over the Eagles taking the 21-year-old’s tally to three top-flight goals in 11 appearances thus far.
The 21-year-old was not the only asset to have sent something of a message with his display, however, with full-back, Vitaliy Mykolenko having seemingly looked “a different player” against Patrick Vieira’s side, according to journalist Joe Thomas.
While the Ukrainian international did lose possession 15 times in his promising individual outing, that was seemingly a marker of the former Dynamo Kyiv man’s willingness to get forward, having also played a key part in Gordon’s goal after seeing his initial, fierce effort parried out by opposition ‘keeper, Vicente Guaita.
The 23-year-old – who was signed by the Merseyside outfit back in January on a £17m deal – has faced a tough test trying to fill the void of Lucas Digne in the left-back berth, having somewhat failed to replicate the Frenchman’s attacking impact with no goal involvements to his name thus far this term.
On the evidence of Saturday’s win, however, there are encouraging signs emerging with regards to the 28-cap gem’s influence in the final third, with the defender having been “far more adventurous” on the left flank than usual, in the words of the aforementioned Thomas.
The £58k-per-week colossus also showed his quality defensively after winning three of his five ground duels and recording two tackles, while his match rating of 7.3, as per SofaScore, was the joint-third highest of any of player on the day.
Having ‘defended resolutely and consistently got forward’ – according to Liverpool Echo’s Chris Beesley – Mykolenko has seemingly set the benchmark for his performances from now on, with the £16.2m-rated machine needing to continue to offer a real threat in an offensive sense.