They would not go. Not the fans who invaded the Goodison Park field and sang with raw excitement for 30 minutes after the final whistle. Not the players who joined the choir from the other side of a police cordon. Not Frank Lampard, who disappeared into the crowd and reappeared on the roof of the executive poles to be absorbed in the acclaim.
And not Everton. His Premier League life was cut short after a desperate 45 minutes against Crystal Palace. They would not go.
There were five minutes of normal time left of a tense but unforgettable encounter. Five minutes for Everton to maintain their top-level status for a 69th year and avoid having to fight a first relegation since 1951 on the final day at Arsenal. Dominic Calvert-Lewin timed his impact on the year of Everton to perfection.
Throwing himself against Demarai Gray’s free kick, the center forward who has missed much of the season due to injury threw himself into Goodison Park folklore with a header in front of Jack Butland.
Lampard’s team had fallen 2-0 at the break; chaotic, uncertain and in free fall towards the Championship. Now, encouraged by the introduction of Dele Alli in the half and repressed by goals from Michael Keane, Richarlison and Calvert-Lewin, they had a comeback to compare to last day’s breakaway against Wimbledon in 1994. fight provoked a stupid first release. invasion that took seven minutes to stop. When it was over, however, it was a struggle that will never be forgotten in these parts.
Lampard had done the job. The consequences of the relegation were huge for a club in Everton’s financial position and with a new stadium under construction at Bramley Moore Pier. Survival allows for reconstruction and, in these circumstances, an understandable celebration.
Frank Lampard celebrates at the final whistle. Photography: Michael Regan / Getty Images
The Evertonians could not have done more to push their beloved club over the line. For the third game in a row at home, the Everton coach was greeted by a passionate crowd at Goodison Road, but in much larger numbers and with many more blue smoke bombs than those preceded by Chelsea and Brentford. .
Repeated appeals about love for fans to make room “to allow players access to the stadium” gave a sense of support and despair for a final victory in a tortuous season. It looked more like a prelude to a cup final than a relegation cut.
The public’s despair seeped into the team’s performance in the first half. The hosts were frantic, nervous and relied too much on the long point towards an isolated Calvert-Lewin. The rudimentary approach played perfectly in the hands of a confident and confident Palace team.
Patrick Vieira dropped two of his most influential midfielders to Conor Gallagher and Cheikhou Kouyaté, but the visitors dominated independently. The cunning and intent shown by Eberechi Eze, Wilfried Zaha and Jeffrey Schlupp contrasted with the waste of André Gomes and Abdoulaye Doucouré.
Everton fans pour into the pitch full-time. Photo: Oils Scarff / AFP / Getty Images
Goodison’s mood has been broken after Gomes and Doucouré were penalized for a foul on Tyrick Mitchell in the middle of Everton. Eze swung in a good chance from the left, but the visitors’ defense were able to clear the ball.
Goodison was upset again when Anthony Gordon was crushed by a dangerous challenge from Jordan Ayew. The Palau striker has gone over but escaped with a yellow card. Two minutes later Everton’s torment increased, doubling the visitors’ lead.
His shot came in from the right hand side but Séamus Coleman managed to save it with an unbelievable reaction stop. Five blue T-shirts had chased him back, but Pickford chose to give a clear punch and exhausted his spending to Zaha. The shot from the edge of the box bounced off the ground, Pickford deflected a stop, but only to Ayew, who passed the ball to Mykolenko and Doucouré at the goal line.
Everton created almost nothing in the first half. Something had to change and Lampard introduced Alli with fewer spots for Gomes, who was badly out of class, and went 4-3-3. It was Tottenham’s former home manager’s first appearance since May 1 and his presentation helped spark an immediate improvement, bringing Everton above the pitch and giving him more time on the ball. .
The local team needed a quick response. Mykolenko struck a 30 meter free kick home after a corner kick that was nicely executed by Mason Holgate.
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Everton’s relentless pursuit of the equalizer left them exposed to the counterattack and Pickford saved Mateta well. Keane was cautioned for defeating Eze, Calvert-Lewin was unlucky not to follow suit for a foul on Nathaniel Clyne, but just as Everton seemed to be losing their temper, they found a way back.
There he was very involved, grabbing Coleman’s cross to his chest and throwing a low volley into the goal. One touch from the Palace cleared only to Richarlison, who controlled poorly with his first touch but managed to throw a shot with his second. The ball hit Gallagher, who had replaced Schlupp a minute earlier, and went past Butland. Goodison exploded and there were more things to come.