Dominic Calvert-Lewin scored his ninth goal of the season. James Rodriguez netted twice as Everton beat Brighton to make it four Premier League wins from four for the impressive table-topping Toffees.
Everton vs Brighton is another game that prompted questions about goalkeeper Jordan Pickford’s quality for club and country.
All was well for the home side after Lewin rose highest to head in at the back post to cap another magnificent week that led him to his second hat-trick of the season and earn a first call-up to the senior England squad.
But in the first-half closing stage, England keeper Pickford dropped a tame bouncing ball at the feet of Neal Maupay who thereafter slotted the ball in on the turn.
Heavy rain experienced during the match was undoubtedly a contributing factor. But the poor error comes not long after the shocking mistake he made in the Carabao Cup win at Fleetwood.
Luckily for the home side, they reclaimed their lead before the break when Rodriguez picked out fellow Colombian Yerry Mina, who headed in from a corner.
Additionally, it was Rodriguez who put the game beyond Albion. He firstly slid in to finish off Alex Iwobi’s chipped across at the back post and then finding space in the same area to tap home Abdoulaye Doucoure’s pass.
On the other hand, Brighton claimed a consolation through a superb Yves Bissouma strike in added time. However, they have now lost three of their first four games.
Gloomy at One Side, Brilliant at the Other.
Since joining Everton in 2016 August, Calvert-Lewin has played under six managers. Now, though, under Ancelotti, Lewin has developed a supreme finisher and the side is set up to supply him.
Earlier in the season, referring to the striker, Ancelotti harkened back to his time as AC Milan boss when Filippo Inzaghi made the predatory one-touch finish an artform.
Lewin is not at that level yet. But the shared DNA is evident. An early chance gifted to him from Bissouma error saw him rashly get the ball out of his feet and fire a shot that Matt Ryan had to palm away.
His opener goal looks simple on the surface. However, it is a testament to positioning, prowess, and the ever-growing understanding of the service he needs from a team that has come a long way from some of the limp.
Things are not rosy at the other end of the pitch. Pickford who seemed shaky throughout the game gifted his side an equalizer. Also, he could have easily presented them with another goal when he palmed out across to Maupay for a shot that Tom Davies blocked.
This however is not a new problem. Pickford has made 11 errors leading to goals in the Premier League since his 2017 August debut.
Moreover, Everton’s superb attack talent compensated for his huge mistake. But his form will be a concern to Ancelotti and manager Gareth Southgate with three international fixtures coming up this month.