Premier League - Lugano salvages point in Mel's first game

Premier League, The Hawthorns - West Brom 1 (Lugano 75) Everton 1 (Miralles 41)

Premier League - Lugano salvages point in Mel's first game

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West Bromwich Albion's Diego Lugano (bottom L) celebrates his goal against Everton with Claudio Yacob (Reuters)

Diego Lugano's diving header salvaged a point for West Bromwich Albion in a 1-1 draw at home to Everton as Pepe Mel took charge of the Baggies for the first time and Everton lost ground in the race for the Champions League.

Everton took the lead against the run of play courtesy of Kevin Miralles, who latched onto Romelu Lukaku's superb knockdown to slot past Ben Foster.

The visitors took their foot off the pedal in the second half and West Brom, renewed by Mel's second half changes, drew level when Lugano stopped low to head in James Morrison's cross from the right.

Everton thought they won it deep into injury time when Sylvain Distin put the ball in the net - only for Everton's celebrations to be cut short due to offside.

West Brom will be pleased to come through this game given the controversy that surrounds the club following Nicolas Anelka's gesture on December 28 that led to sponsors Zoopla severing their ties with the club from the end of the season.

Meanwhile, Roberto Martinez's Everton will be ruing a missed opportunity to leapfrog Tottenham and rivals Liverpool, who the Toffees meet next weekend, in the race for fourth.

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11' OVIEDO CHANCE - Lukaku is the provider as he scampers down the left and provides a cross for Oviedo, who dances into a shooting position but flashes it just wide from 15 yards.

13' ANELKA CHANCE - Something out of nothing as Anelka collects the ball, cuts onto his right foot, and arrows a ferocious shot just wide.

41' MIRALLES GOAL - Super knock down by Lukaku creates an opening for Miralles, who slots past Ben Foster for the opener.

75' LUGANO GOAL - Lugano stays in the box after a previous West Brom attack and gets on the end of Morrison's centre and heads into the roof of the net to level.

90'+4 SAVED BY THE FLAG - Everton's celebrations are cut short as Distin's goal is rightly chalked off for offside.


WBA (10) and Everton (9) have drawn more games than any other team in the Premier League this season.

Everton are now unbeaten in their last seven Premier League away games (W3 D4).

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Can West Brom survive without Nicolas Anelka? The controversial Frenchman could be slammed with a lengthy ban for his gesture last month. On tonight's evidence, the Baggies can prosper without him. Anelka looked lost for long periods and West Brom looked more dangerous after the introduction of Berahino.


Kevin Mirallas (Everton) - There were few standout candidates but Miralles gets it for an all round good display. Linked well with Lukaku and took his goal well. Always dangerous.


West Brom: Foster 6, Reid 6, Olsson 6, Lugano 7, Ridgewell 7, Brunt 7, Yacob 7, Morrison 8, Gera 6, Vydra 6, Anelka 5. Subs: Anichebe 6, Mulumbu 7, Berahino 7.

Everton: Howard 7, Coleman 8, Jagielka 7, Distin 7, Baines 6, McCarthy 5, Barry 6, Mirallas 8, Osman 6, Oviedo 7, Lukaku 8. Subs: McGeady 7, Hibbert N/A, Stones 7.


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