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Chelsea 2-2 Everton: Ellis Simms strikes late to frustrate Graham Potter’s side


Helsea’s momentum was halted before the international break as Ellis Simms struck late to give Everton a 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge.

The pressure has been released on Graham Potter in recent weeks, and with a Champions League quarter-final coming up next month, the priority for the rest of the season really isn’t the Premier League.

But that result will be frustrating, with Chelsea just minutes away from securing four straight wins. Joao Felix gave Chelsea a second-half lead, and although Abdoulaye Doucoure equalized for the Toffees, Kai Havertz quickly restored the lead from the penalty spot. However, Simms proved too strong for Kalidou Koulibaly and then produced the finish to earn Everton a crucial point.

Chelsea dominated for much of the first half, but it was a familiar story for the hosts. A quick start didn’t bring a goal, the finish was pointless and they had nothing to show for much light buildup.

Havertz had a decent chance with a header and Felix was a constant threat, but the Toffees managed to slow things down and level at half-time.

Felix scored the goal his performance deserved after the break as Ben Chilwell’s cross was cleared to him from just inside the box and he dragged an effort into the far corner, with help from the inside the post.

Christian Pulisic had the ball in the net shortly after that strike as Chelsea threatened to really take control, but the offside flag was quickly raised and it was Everton who found the next goal.

To no one’s surprise, he came from a set piece. James Tarkowski got up well at the back post from a corner, Doucoure headed Kepa Arrizabalaga and Havertz couldn’t come back in time to clear him off the line.

Everton weren’t on good terms for long. Reece James drove into the box, was knocked down by a combination of Tarkowski and Ben Godfrey and the referee pointed the spot, a decision which VAR ultimately upheld. Jordan Pickford tried his best to fend off Havertz but the Everton keeper was sent the wrong way as the penalty was delivered coldly.

Simms was brought on with ten minutes remaining and he proved to be Everton’s hero, scoring his first goal for the club. He got past Koulibaly and, when he reached goal, produced a finish that squirmed under Kepa to give the Toffees a huge boost in their bid for Premier League survival.

Sports standard

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