Beckford puts Moyes in rarefied company

Everton 2 Sunderland 0: Everton manager reaches new milestone thanks to striker's first-half double

David Moyes joined the company of Sir Alex Ferguson, Arsène Wenger and Harry Redknapp by passing the milestone of 500 Premier League points won, but with every season you wonder how much longer he can content himself merely to be mentioned in the same breath as those heavyweights of his profession.

His record at Everton is one of which he can rightly be proud, given their financial disadvantages, but while he is still, at 47, relatively young there must surely come a time when a good reputation and three manager of the year awards is not enough. Given that Everton were three points above the relegation places at three o'clock yesterday, should he achieve the ambition he regards as still possible this season – that of qualifying for Europe for the fifth time – he might win another.

This at least was a step in the right direction. Everton have tended to follow good performances with bad ones in a frustrating season but this time they built on the unexpected FA Cup victory over Chelsea with a solidly routine victory, capped by two Jermaine Beckford goals.

They meet Reading in the Cup on Tuesday evening, face Newcastle in the League next Saturday, then have three home matches in a row, all winnable. Their movement up the table could be rapid. "We have not had too many back-to-back wins this season but today was a good start and we have a chance on Tuesday to keep it going," Moyes said.

Only a month ago Sunderland looked much more likely contenders for a Europa League place, revealing the potential that must have helped win Steve Bruce the long-term contract extension he signed this week. Yet since the beginning of February that assessment has had to be revised on account of the revelation of defensive vulnerability, which took Bruce by surprise when his side shipped four goals at home to Chelsea but has persisted in a run of four straight defeats.

Bruce had questions to ask over both yesterday's goals after Everton effectively wrapped up the points in the first 39 minutes. The first came after only eight, when Leon Osman was allowed all too easily to thread a pass through that presented Beckford, in the inside left channel, with a clear sight of Simon Mignolet's goal. His finish was not exactly clinical and needed the foot of defender Titus Bramble to find its intended target but, needing one to reach 100 career League goals, the former Leeds striker celebrated anyway.

Beckford could claim the second with no argument. This time there was individual rather than collective responsibility after right-back Anton Ferdinand allowed himself to be outwitted, even out-muscled by Mikel Arteta along the Everton left. The Spaniard then showed John Mensah a clean pair of heels before crossing from the byline. Beckford was ready to receive the pass and while his touch again left something to be desired it was strong enough to send the ball wide of Mignolet and leave Sunderland with a steeply uphill task.

Until the second goal, Bruce's side had not looked too shabby, going forward at least. In the sixth minute, Kieran Richardson probably should have scored the game's first goal, but dragged his shot wide after Asamoah Gyan sent him clear on Sunderland's first meaningful attack. At 1-0, moreover, it took a brilliant save by Tim Howard, fingertipping Stéphane Sessègnon's powerful, rising drive on to his crossbar, to keep the scores level. But thereafter, Sunderland offered very little. "In the first half, we were as poor as we have been all season," Bruce said. "It's a good job I signed my contract yesterday!

"We made a fist of it in the second half but in truth we were second best. I believe we have not won here in 16 years and it never looked like that was going to change. They were poor goals to concede and if you defend like that in the Premier League you are going to get beat."

Attendance: 37,776

Referee: Stuart Attwell

Man of the match: Coleman

Match rating: 6/10

Arts and Entertainment
Gregg Wallace in Summer's Supermarket Secrets
tv All of this year's 15 contestants have now been named
Sport
The giant banner displayed by Legia Warsaw supporters last night
football Polish side was ejected from Champions League
Arts and Entertainment
Could we see Iain back in the Bake Off tent next week?
tv Contestant teased Newsnight viewers on potential reappearance
News
i100(and it's got nothing to do with the Great British Bake Off)
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Voices
The Ukip leader has consistently refused to be drawn on where he would mount an attempt to secure a parliamentary seat
voicesNigel Farage: Those who predicted we would lose momentum heading into the 2015 election are going to have to think again
Arts and Entertainment
Cara Delevingne made her acting debut in Anna Karenina in 2012
film Cara Delevingne 'in talks' to star in Zoolander sequel
News
i100
Sport
Mario Balotelli pictured in his Liverpool shirt for the first time
football
Life and Style
tech
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

Ukraine crisis: The phoney war is over as Russian troops and armour pour across the border

The phoney war is over

Russian troops and armour pour into Ukraine
Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

The world’s entire food system is under attack - and Britain is most at risk, according to a new study
Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Seoul's plastic surgery industry is booming thanks to the popularity of the K-Pop look
From Mozart to Orson Welles: Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

After the death of Sandy Wilson, 90, who wrote his only hit musical in his twenties, John Walsh wonders what it's like to peak too soon and go on to live a life more ordinary
Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Fears are mounting that Vladimir Putin has instructed hackers to target banks like JP Morgan
Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years

Salomé: A head for seduction

Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years. Now audiences can meet the Biblical femme fatale in two new stage and screen projects
From Bram Stoker to Stanley Kubrick, the British Library's latest exhibition celebrates all things Gothic

British Library celebrates all things Gothic

Forthcoming exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination will be the UK's largest ever celebration of Gothic literature
The Hard Rock Café's owners are embroiled in a bitter legal dispute - but is the restaurant chain worth fighting for?

Is the Hard Rock Café worth fighting for?

The restaurant chain's owners are currently embroiled in a bitter legal dispute
Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival

In search of Caribbean soul food

Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival
11 best face powders

11 best face powders

Sweep away shiny skin with our pick of the best pressed and loose powder bases
England vs Norway: Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Lack of Englishmen at leading Premier League clubs leaves manager hamstrung
Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

Di Maria and Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

They both inherited the iconic shirt at Old Trafford, but the £59.7m new boy is joining a club in a very different state
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone