Smiles were brought back to Goodison Park as the Everton faithful witnessed their team finally announce themselves for this season. The team’s 3-0 win over Aston Villa was much needed, and much deserved.
Roberto Martinez had clearly worked hard with the team on the training pitch to improve the defensive side of Everton’s game – an area which had been the team’s Achilles heel in their relatively poor start to the season.
For Aston Villa it is now their fourth Premier League loss in a row. It’s not going well for them at present.
Here is how the players performed.
Tim Howard: 7
The Everton keeper had little to do over the course of the 90 minutes but commanded his area well and looked a lot more confident than in previous matches
Seamus Coleman: 8
The Irishman brought a dynamism to Everton’s right flank which had been missing in past fixtures – it being Tony Hibbert who had been filling in for the injured Coleman. Lasting the full 90 minutes, and notching Everton’s third goal, it was a dream return.
Antolin Alcaraz: 7
In his first start of the Premier League campaign, Alcaraz performed brilliantly. Composed with and without the ball, he also made some vital interventions. It is likely he’ll be kept in the starting XI after his performance.
Phil Jagielka: 8
One of the standout performers in the match, he scored Everton’s first which gave his team the momentum they needed to take control. Consistently solid and aware throughout the match at the heart of the defence. Well played, Phil.
Leighton Baines: 8
Baines contributed two assists, one of which was from his weaker foot- a cross coming from the right wing position- this epitomises his performance. He was everywhere, either initiating or contributing to most of Everton’s build up play. So too his effort can’t be doubted in defensive actions, always pressing or busting a gut to get back in position.
Gareth Barry: 8
Barry had a very good game. As usual he kept things simple- always available to receive the ball and move it on. He mopped up well and occasionally found sharp forward passes to begin attacks. His performance greatly contributed to Everton’s control in the game.
James McCarthy: 7
On his return from injury, McCarthy paired up well with Barry in the Everton’s double pivot and put himself about. He worked hard and kept things ticking over.