Everton daring to hope they can mix with the big boys

Swansea City 0 Everton 3

The Liberty Stadium

Everton felt cheated five days ago after having two goals disallowed in the draw with Newcastle, but David Moyes’ men ensured there was no dispute about the scoreline here with a comprehensive victory.

The Toffees produced a masterful display right from the off and were duly rewarded with strikes from Victor Anichebe, Kevin Mirallas and Marouane Fellaini.

During his 10-year tenure in charge of the Blues, Moyes has often cut a frustrated figure as FA Cup and Champions’ League opportunities have passed him by. Yet this season feels different. Everton have a squad that has more strength in depth and they showed that they listen to the manager, whose pre-match rallying cry was to take the next step. They did in style, jumping into second spot in the table.

The convincing result – which could have been by much more had it not been for some poor second-half finishing – allowed the travelling Blues supporters to leave south Wales singing, “We’re gonna win the league”, which left Moyes in jubilant mood. He beamed afterwards: “It’s great because we don’t hear that very often. We could be quite easily mixing with the big boys. We’ve not often been in the position. We finished seasons strong and the one season we started strong we finished in a Champions’ League place.

“I’m delighted. The result and the performance matched each other and we played really well from the opening minute right to the end. We should have scored more with the amount of ball and the opportunities we had.

“We were a bit wasteful in the final third and we needed our goalkeeper to make a few saves but the result was correct. Hopefully we are still mixing it at the end of the season.”

Swansea were on the back foot as soon as the opening minute when Anichebe’s close-range header from Leighton Baines’s free-kick was gathered by Michel Vorm at the second attempt. Moyes’s men played at a lightning pace as Mirallas was twice denied by Vorm.

Swansea had a major let-off in the 11th minute when Ashley Williams hacked down Anichebe after Wayne Routledge conceded possession. Everton cried for a red card with Williams retreating as the last man, but Manchester official Anthony Taylor deemed his centre-back partner, Alan Tate, was covering.

Swansea briefly threatened as club-record signing, Pablo Hernandez, handed his first start ahead of Nathan Dyer, volleyed wide after John Heitinga half-cleared. But the tide was firmly with the Merseysiders as Anichebe fired a powerful 20-yard effort straight at Vorm.

The only surprise was it took 21 minutes for the opening goal to come. Another Baines free-kick from the left saw Fellaini chest the ball past Williams before controversially scooping it with his forearm beyond Tate to find Anichebe, who smashed it into the bottom corner.

It brought Swansea to life as a Hernandez effort was cleared off the line, Michu headed over from six yards and Ki’s 25-yard shot curled inches wide. But Everton hit back with a killer second from Mirallas. Fellaini’s pass inside Ben Davies allowed Steven Pienaar to square for Mirallas, who got ahead of Tate and Angel Rangel at the far post. Vorm managed to touch Mirallas’s first effort on to the bar, but the Belgian was first to the rebound.

Swansea were almost handed a lifeline before the break as Rangel was denied by Tim Howard. Then the Everton keeper came to the rescue in the second half to stop Michu from point-blank range. But Everton were the better side even before Swansea substitute Nathan Dyer was sent off for two yellow cards.

Mirallas hit the bar for a second time and Fellaini missed two chances before finally diverting Baines’s free-kick past Vorm to inflict Swansea’s heaviest home defeat since the 3-0 loss to Middlesbrough in August 2009. The Swansea manager Michael Laudrup admitted: “Everton deserved the win.”

Swansea (4-2-3-1): Vorm; Rangel, Tate (Britton, 55), Williams, Davies; Ki, de Guzman; Michu, Hernandez (Dyer, 46), Graham (Shechter, 72); Routledge.

Everton (4-3-3): Howard; Coleman, Jagielka , Heitinga, Baines; Mirallas (Naismith, 71), Neville, Osman; Pienaar (Gueye, 86), Fellaini (Oviedo, 86), Anichebe.

Referee: Andrew Taylor.

Man of the match: Anichebe (Everton)

Match rating: 8/10

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Babysitter Katie and Paul have terse words in the park
tvReview: The strength of the writing keeps viewers glued to their seats even when they are confronted with the hard-hitting scenes
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
American singer, acclaimed actor of stage and screen, political activist and civil rights campaigner Paul Robeson (1898 - 1976), rehearses in relaxed mood at the piano.
filmSinger, actor, activist, athlete: Paul Robeson was a cultural giant. But prejudice and intolerance drove him to a miserable death. Now his story is to be told in film...
Sport
England’s opening goalscorer Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain battles with Scotland’s Charlie Mulgrew
FootballEngland must learn to keep possession and dictate games before they are exposed by the likes of Germany and Brazil
Life and Style
Make-up artists prepare contestants for last year’s Miss World, held in Budapest
fashion
Sport
Wigan Athletic’s back-of-the shirt sponsor Premier Range has pulled out due to Malky Mackay’s arrival
Football
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

US immigration: President Obama ready to press ahead with long-promised plan to overhaul 'broken system' - but will it get past a Republican-controlled Congress?

Immigration: Obama's final frontier

The President is ready to press ahead with the long-promised plan to overhaul America's 'broken system' - but will it get past a Republican-controlled Congress?
Bill Cosby rape allegations explained: Why are these allegations coming out now? Why didn’t these women come forward earlier? And why has nobody taken legal action?

Bill Cosby rape allegations explained

Why are these allegations coming out now? Why has nobody taken legal action? And what happens next for the man once thought of as 'America's Dad'
Four years of excruciating seizures caused by the 1cm tapeworm found burrowing through a man's brain

You know that headache you’ve got?

Four years of excruciating seizures caused by the 1cm tapeworm found burrowing through a man's brain
Travelling to work by scooter is faster than walking and less sweaty than cycling, so why aren’t we all doing it?

Scoot commute

Travelling to work by scooter is faster than walking and less sweaty than cycling, so why aren’t we all doing it?
Paul Robeson: The story of how an American icon was driven to death to be told in film

The Paul Robeson story

How an American icon was driven to death to be told in film
10 best satellite navigation systems

Never get lost again: 10 best satellite navigation systems

Keep your vehicle going in the right direction with a clever device
Paul Scholes column: England must learn to keep possession and dictate games before they are exposed by the likes of Germany and Brazil

Paul Scholes column

England must learn to keep possession and dictate games before they are exposed by the likes of Germany and Brazil
Michael Dawson: I’ll thank Spurs after we win says defender as he prepares to return with Hull

Michael Dawson: I’ll thank Spurs after we win

Hull defender faces his struggling former club on Sunday ready to show what they are missing. But he says he will always be grateful to Tottenham
Frank Warren column: Dr Wu has big plans for the professionals yet he should stick to the amateur game

Frank Warren column

Dr Wu has big plans for the professionals yet he should stick to the amateur game
Synagogue attack: Fear unites both sides of Jerusalem as minister warns restoring quiet could take 'months'

Terror unites Jerusalem after synagogue attack

Rising violence and increased police patrols have left residents of all faiths looking over their shoulders
Medecins sans Frontieres: The Ebola crisis has them in the headlines, but their work goes far beyond West Africa

'How do you carry on? You have to...'

The Ebola crisis has Medecins sans Frontieres in the headlines, but their work goes far beyond West Africa
Isis extends its deadly reach with suicide bombing in Kurdish capital

Isis extends its deadly reach with suicide bombing in Kurdish capital

Residents in what was Iraq’s safest city fear an increase in jihadist attacks, reports Patrick Cockburn
Underwater photography competition winners 2014 - in pictures

'Mysterious and inviting' shot of diver wins photography competition

Stunning image of cenote in Mexico takes top prize
Sir John Major: Negative West End portrayals of politicians put people off voting

Sir John Major hits out at theatres

Negative West End portrayals of politicians put people off voting
Kicking Barbie's butt: How the growth of 3D printing enabled me to make an army of custom-made figurines

Kicking Barbie's butt

How the growth of 3D printing enabled toy-designer to make an army of custom-made figurines