Everton climb out of Relegation zone thanks to Frank Lampard’s tactics


Everton rose out of the Premier League relegation zone with a tenacious win over Leicester City at King Power Stadium.

Everton climb out of Relegation zone thanks to Frank Lampard's tactics

Frank Lampard’s team won their third game in a row thanks to a magnificent volley from Vitaliy Mykolenko and a header from Mason Holgate, ensuring they remain in control of their destiny with four games remaining.

After six minutes, Mykolenko scored after Alex Iwobi’s cross, but Patson Daka equalized five minutes later, capitalizing on Yerry Mina’s attempted header back to Jordan Pickford.

After Kasper Schmeichel saved Richarlison’s initial header from a corner, Holgate was the first to react, restoring the Toffees’ lead after 30 minutes.

Leicester dominated for significant stretches of the second half as they sought an equalizer, but England’s number one Pickford was once again in spectacular form.

After making one of the season’s best saves against Chelsea on Sunday, the Toffees goalkeeper made stunning saves to deny Nampalys Mendy and Harvey Barnes to retain his side’s slim advantage.

Everton climbed up to 16th place with the win, one point ahead of Burnley and Leeds United, who fell to 18th after losing 2-1 at Arsenal.

The Toffees have played one fewer game than their relegation-threatened opponents.

Everton climb out of Relegation zone thanks to Frank Lampard's tactics

“No matter what occurred, no matter if they scored, we had a plan and the guys stuck to it,” Lampard told BBC Sport.

“We’re not done yet, but the players can be proud of what they’ve accomplished on the field today.” We should be pleased with the outcome, but we are in no way secure.”

Leicester’s winless Premier League record now stands at five games, and Brendan Rodgers’ side is now 14th in the table.

Everton takes another step closer to safety thanks to Pickford

Everton started last Sunday five points behind Leeds and Burnley, but spurred on by the Goodison Park crowd, won a critical match against Chelsea to keep pace with the teams above them.

Lampard’s team will have the chance to go four points clear of them at already-relegated Watford on Wednesday after winning successive league games for the first time since September, accompanied by defeat for Leeds at Arsenal and Burnley’s loss to Aston Villa.

The visitors, who had only taken six points away from home all season, got off to a shaky start in defense, with Mina denying Daka after only two minutes with a spectacular sliding block.

Mina, who had been substituted midway through the first half due to injury, was at fault when his header back towards goal was pounced on by Daka – just 15 seconds after Abdoulaye Doucoure’s drive had been pushed against the post at the other end.

Everton climb out of Relegation zone thanks to Frank Lampard's tactics

Despite Schmeichel’s best efforts, the visitors responded positively to the setback as Holgate exploited the Foxes’ well-known weakness from set-pieces.

With driving dashes in an attempt to ease the increasing pressure in the second half, midfielder Anthony Gordon typified the fight and drive that has underpinned Everton’s recent upturn in form.

Leicester have been left to pursue a top-half finish as they attempt to cap a dismal league campaign on a good note after being denied a place in the Europa Conference League final by Roma on Thursday.

Pickford made seven crucial saves to keep Mendy’s shot out of the top corner and Barnes’ low attempt out of the bottom corner, extending their winless record to seven games in all competitions.

“We’ve shot ourselves in the foot so many times this season,” Rodgers remarked. That is entirely my fault. The team’s confidence in dealing with set-piece scenarios is lacking.

“I remember where we were three years ago, and we’re sad that we didn’t win a trophy this season.” But you need the drive and hunger, which we haven’t seen.”


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