Everton manager Sean Dyche was frustrated by his side’s inability to convert their chances and disappointed by the lack of VAR intervention on Michael Keane’s disallowed goal in the 1-0 defeat to Fulham.
Despite an encouraging performance in which they created twice as many chances as the visitors, they were undone by a sucker-punch goal as two Cottagers substitutes Aleksandar Mitrovic and Andreas Pereira combined to provide the third, Bobby Decordova-Reid, with a 73rd-minute tap-in.
But it was the chalking off of Keane’s goal, when he turned the ball into an empty net after goalkeeper Bernd Leno had dropped it in a challenge with James Tarkowski, which was crucial to an Everton side who were the Premier League’s lowest scorers last season.
“Very frustrated with the outcome. We played well and a lot of the things we are looking for were there, especially first half,” said Dyche.
“We limited them to almost no chances or nothing clear while creating nine or 10 in the first half, five of which are high quality. We had one of the highest chance counts in my time. So the mix of the performance is right, but we have to score a goal.
“I am a big fan of VAR, I don’t know why (Keane’s goal was not referred) on this occasion, I get the idea they are promoting the idea the referee’s decision is first but they should step in on this one.
“I can’t really work it out. I have seen it back, Tarky does nothing really, minimal contact other than the keeper landing on him.
“The minimum should be that you go and look at the monitor. He didn’t do anything to put the keeper off and he drops it.”
Fulham boss Marco Silva – a former Everton manager – admitted his side got fortunate with the result.
“It was not a good performance from ourselves. Overall during the game we didn’t perform at our level,” he said.
“Even if we started the game well. after the first 15 minutes we started to lose too many balls in areas it is difficult to lose balls in.
“We gave Everton so many chances to punish us in counter-attacks. It was more our fault because we didn’t perform. Bernd keeps us in the game – a great performance.
“That we are able to win in such circumstances, it is a great feeling. It is not a problem for me to say Everton deserved better.
“It’s a great feeling when you don’t play at your level for 95 minutes and you are able to win away from home.”