Everton 1-0 West Ham: Neal Maupay gets first Toffees goal as Hammers enter break in relegation zone

·3-min read
Neal Maupay’s first Everton goal was enough for the three points  (REUTERS)
Neal Maupay’s first Everton goal was enough for the three points (REUTERS)

Everton secured their first Premier League win of the season as they beat West Ham 1-0 at Goodison Park.

In what was the final top-flight match before the international break, Neal Maupay struck his first Everton goal with a fine finish after the break to give the Toffees a much-needed three points, lifting them up to 13th in the table.

As for the Hammers, defeat continued what has been an incredibly poor start to the camaign domestically, David Moyes’ side again a long way off the standards they have set in recent seasons.

They will have to spend the next two weeks in the relegation zone, with just four points and three goals scored from their opening seven league matches.

Everton were once again without Dominic Calvert-Lewin, despite suggestions he could return from injury, while Michail Antonio got the nod up front for the visitors, despite Gianluca Scamacca getting on the scoresheet in Europe in midweek.

The two sides went into the match with a combined eight points and seven goals from their opening six Premier League games, so that chances were at a premium in the opening 45 minutes was hardly a surprise.

Antonio briefly thought he was set for a tap-in at the back post, only for Conor Coady to somehow turn it away while also avoiding his own net, while the Hammers racked up eight corners in the first-half.

None were particular dangerous though and it was Everton who were the better side overall, with Amadou Onana, who the Hammers were close to signing in the summer, a real threat in the air. There was plenty of intensity and heavy challenges, fans having to make do with those in the absence of any real quality.

There were chances at both ends immediately after the break, with Jarrod Bowen firing over the bar and Demarai Gray then curling an effort straight at Lukasz Fabianski. Opportunities were at last coming and it was not long before one was taken.

Maupay was unable to get off the mark for Everton in the Merseyside derby on his debut but he did so this time, and in brilliant fashion. He turned on the edge of the box before getting the shot away quickly, firing past Fabianski at his near post.

It was almost tenth time lucky for West Ham from corners, as they pushed for an equaliser. Tomas Soucek got across his man at the near post but his flicked header bounced just wide of the far post. Said Benrahma, introduced off the bench as Maxwel Cornet and Scamacca also came on, went as close as anyone to levelling things up, as he saw his curling effort smack the inside of the post.

Alex Iwobi had a decent chance to double the lead but could not keep his effort down, though that was a rare foray into West Ham territory for Everton once they took the lead, containment very much the name of the game rather than ambition. The hosts’ time-wasting tactics frustrated Moyes to the extent he ran onto the pitch to act as a very experienced ball boy in the latter stages, unsuccessfully trying to get an Everton free-kick taken quickly.

Cornet had a couple of chances to equalise, the first parried away by Asmir Begovic and the second fired into the side-netting as he was forced wider and wider going round the goalkeeper.

A 14th West Ham corner brought an almighty scramble deep into stoppage-time, Declan Rice heading the ball across the face of goal, but a team-mate could not providing the finishing touch. After a big summer transfer window, the Hammers have made their joint-worst start to a Premier League season.