Belfast Telegraph

Toffees ease past Baggies

Leon Osman's wickedly-deflected shot and Victor Anichebe's second-half strike gave Everton a 2-0 win at home to West Brom.

Osman's 18th-minute effort beat goalkeeper Ben Foster with the help of a huge change of direction from Baggies defender Gareth McAuley.

Anichebe scored the crucial second just after the hour and Toffees fans will have taken great delight in their side moving ahead of near-neighbours Liverpool into eighth.

Osman, heading wide Leighton Baines' cross, and Darron Gibson, firing just over, both served early warnings to Albion.

A good passage of possession play brought the goal and was probably the only period of the first half when the hosts looked in real control.

Osman turned experienced defender Liam Ridgewell far too easily and offloaded to Nikica Jelavic on the edge of the penalty area. The Croatia striker returned the pass and Osman fired goalwards only for the ball to take a deflection off McAuley and leave goalkeeper Foster stranded.

West Brom's only chance of the half almost brought the equaliser when Tim Howard pushed Paul Scharner's shot into the path of Chris Brunt at the far post but the winger's follow-up attempt hit Shane Long.

Marouane Fellaini's low, long-range effort was then tipped around the post by Foster.

Jelavic had a half-chance from a near-post header which Foster caught easily just after the interval and curled a shot over midway through the second half before Anichebe, who had replaced Tim Cahill after just over an hour, showed his fellow striker how it should be done by firing in off the far post after Steven Pienaar's diagonal run.

Pienaar should have put the result beyond doubt in the 74th minute having been played in by Jelavic but he shot straight at Foster.


From Belfast Telegraph