Goals from Romelu Lukaku and Ross Barkley helped Everton to a 2-0 victory over West Ham United at Goodison Park on Sunday afternoon.
- Everton 2 West Ham 0
- First half ends goalless
- Lukaku fires Toffees in front on 50 mins
- Barkley doubles hosts' advantage
After a goalless first period, the deadlock was finally broken in the 50th minute, Lukaku converting from close range after Yannick Bolasie did well to keep the ball in play.
And the result was put to bed on 76 minutes, Barkley combining brilliantly with Lukaka before firing a half-volley into the bottom-left corner from the centre of the danger area.
After a cautious start to the encounter by both teams, the match sprang to life in the 12th minute when Pedro Obiang fired over from the centre of the area after being teed up by Dimitri Payet.
The Hammers again went close just one minute, with Payet seeing his goal-bound effort saved in the bottom-right corner by Toffees keeper Joel Robles.
Everton eventually managed to post a response in the 16th minute but the chance went to waste as veteran midfielder fired over the bar with a speculative effort from outside the box.
West Ham continued to create chances, with Manuel Lanzini and Michail Antonio, tasked with leading the Hammers frontline, both going close to breaking the deadlock.
However, the best chance of the half fell to Toffees midfielder Ross Barkley in the 26th minute. The England international looked odds on to score when he latched onto a neat pass from Bryan Oviedo, but West Ham keeper Adrian was alert to the danger, pulling off a miraculous save.
Everton had another chance to go in front in the 38th minute, but Ramiro Funes Mori was unable to direct his headed effort on target from the centre of the box.
Having failed to make their chances count in the first stanza, Everton came out with a renewed sense of purpose in the second half and went on to break the deadlock just five minutes in.
Star striker Lukaku bagged the all-important goal, prodding into an unguarded net after Adrian had managed to keep out Seamus Coleman's stinging shot, with Yannick Bolasie doing well to tee up the Belgian after the ball looked certain to go out of play for a corner.
The goal sparked a big reaction from West Ham, but they were unable to find a way past Robles in the Everton goal.
Manuel Lanzini, Antonio and Mark Noble were all guilty of showing a wayward touch in front of goal, and they were made to rue their profligacy as Everton went on to double their advantage in the 76th minute.
Lukaku was the architect, firing in a cross towards the danger area, where Barkley was well placed to sweep the ball into the bottom-left corner on the half-volley.
The goal effectively killed off the game as a contest, and Everton could have added two or three more in the remaining minutes as they threatened to run rampant against a dejected Hammers backline.
Lukaku failed to capitalise on two later chances, while substitute Tom Cleverley saw his goal-bound effort saved by Adrian in the second minute of injury time.
FT: And that's it. The Toffees pick up all three points from this afternoon's clash
— West Ham United (@WestHamUtd) October 30, 2016