Gylfi Sigurdsson’s stunning goal on Monday against his former club maintained Everton’s unbeaten record under Sam Allardyce with a 3-1 win that left Swansea City rooted to the foot of the English Premier League.
The 28-year-old Iceland international left Swansea for a record ￡45 million (US$60 million) in the close season and his long-range effort in the second half illustrated why Everton wanted him so badly.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin, with his seventh goal in all competitions, had brought Everton level after Leroy Fer had given the visitors the lead with his first goal in 38 matches.
Wayne Rooney wrapped up the points with a penalty — he had an earlier one saved before Calvert-Lewin knocked in the rebound — for his 10th goal of the season.
The victory saw Everton rise to ninth — a heady position given they were in the relegation zone on Oct. 23 — and unbeaten in five matches under Allardyce.
“In games you need something special and Gylfi provided that,” Allardyce told Sky Sports. “From there it was nice and comfortable. It is a great three points considering how poorly we played in the first half.”
Swansea, who lost their sixth successive away match and have only one win in their past 10 games, are four points adrift of safety.
“The mood in the dressing room is very flat,” Swansea manager Paul Clement told the BBC. “We’re bottom of the table on 12 points. We’ve got to focus on getting to 15 points at the halfway mark.”
The visitors suffered a huge blow when Ivory Coast striker Wilfried Bony pulled up injured with what Clement believes is a hamstring problem and had to go off in the fifth minute.
It was the visitors, though, who broke the deadlock.
Jordan Pickford could do nothing about Fer’s close-range half-volley after the Dutchman had escaped Ashley Williams’ attention, nipping around the back of the defender to give the visitors the lead with only their 10th goal of the campaign.
However, the sides went in at halftime all square as in stoppage-time Roque Mesa felled Aaron Lennon to concede a penalty.
Lukasz Fabianski did superbly to save Rooney’s spot-kick, but Calvert-Lewin followed up to rifle the ball home.
Rooney, though, said he is not going to surrender penalty-taking duties even though he has the second worst miss record in English Premier League history — 10 from 33, with England and Newcastle United great Alan Shearer missing 11 of 67.
“I’m a confident person and believe in myself,” Rooney told Sky Sports. “If you look at the pens I have missed you will see I put a bit of top spin on the ball so someone could follow up. I’m not giving them up.”
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