LIVERPOOL, Sep 13 (Reuters) – Everton struck three times in the second half in seven minutes when they beat Burnley 3-1 and tied on points with Premier League leaders Manchester United at Goodison Park on Monday.
Ben Mee’s header in his 200th Premier League game gave Burnley the lead in the 53rd minute, but Everton’s reaction was strong as the hosts clinched their third league win of the season.
Michael Keane headed Everton’s equalizer in the 59th minute before Andros Townsend scored a sensational left-footed foot to give Everton the lead – his first league goal since his free transfer from Crystal Palace.
Seconds later, Demarai Gray made Everton’s third goal all by himself, to the delight of home fans who hadn’t liked what they’d seen before.
Everton moved up to fourth place with 10 points from four games – tied with Liverpool, Chelsea and United.
Burnley were the better side in the first half but they are still waiting for their first league win of the season and stay in 18th place by one point.
Former Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez’s arrival at Goodison was not universally popular with Everton fans, but they started the season in style, scoring 10 goals in four games.
They suffered a blow before kick-off as striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin was out with a broken toe, and for much of the first half they were second-best against a fueled Burnley.
Chris Wood should have given the visitors an early lead, but was unable to make proper contact with his header after a great ball into the penalty area from Dwight McNeil.
Everton’s only real chance before the break was when Townsend picked the run of Abdoulaye Doucoure, whose first angular strike was well saved by Nick Pope.
It was only after Mee Burnley led the way that Everton came to life and Townsend was the catalyst.
He showed great feet to make room on the right wing before taking a perfect cross for Keane to peek into his header.
Townsend had spent almost a year without a goal in the Premier League but his efforts were worth the wait.
He picked up the ball in a central area and bumped forward before sending a curling that dipped his left foot into the top corner of the net.
“My mom kept sending me compilations of all of my goals, she told me to look at them when I can, and maybe I reminded myself that I can do it and pulled them out,” Townsend said of his efforts .
Doucoure then split Burnley’s defense to clear Gray up and he calmly beat Pope before Doucoure himself denied an offside goal when Everton stood up.
Reporting by Martyn Herman, editing by Pritha Sarkar
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