Super-sub Simms equalized in the 90th minute to control the Blues’ resurgence

Super-sub Simms equalized in the 90th minute to control the Blues’ resurgence

Everton ended Chelsea’s winning streak with a dramatic late equalizer from substitute Ellis Simms at Stamford Bridge, boosting their hopes of Premier League survival.

The 22-year-old outmaneuvered Kalidou Koulibaly to make it 2-2 in the 89th minute, after Kai Havertz’s penalty appeared to give Graham Potter’s side a fourth win in a row.

Joao Felix gave Chelsea the lead early in the second half of a match they had dominated up to that point, before being stopped by Abdoulaye Doucoure’s header.

The home side were again left mourning missed chances, with their fluid attacking play dampened by a lack of killer instinct inside the box.

The first roar of anticipation from noisy home support came early. Michael Keane’s header from Ben Chilwell’s corner landed on the edge of the box, from where he was pinned just wide of the goal with a Mateo Kovacic volley.

Christian Pulisic, returning to the team for the first time in two months, came on down the left and pulled the ball back for Chilwell to push it into the stretch of Felix, whose contact was too light to turn him past Jordan Pickford.

Chelsea’s breadth of play challenged Everton’s defensive organisation, attacking fluidly on both wings with Reece James and Chilwell at their punchy and energetic best. Enzo Fernandez struck both short and long balls with deadly accuracy, and Felix stretched the visitors with his mesmerizing close control.

Yet despite all Chelsea’s efforts, a first-half goal would not come. Felix — through whom every promising attack seemed to flow — had a go with a drilled shot from 18 yards that flew right into Pickford’s gloves. A skillful move from a free-kick resulted in a low shot from Fernandez which was blocked.

The hosts had started the game in the bottom half of the table, but a winning run and finally a feeling that Potter knew his favorite starting XI and his form had lifted Stamford Bridge’s mood. Even with Raheem Sterling injured, they attacked as a team comfortable in each other’s company, full of spirit and conviction.

The second half opens with more pressure from Chelsea. Chilwell, again excellent, crossed from the left and Havertz got up to feed a low header on goal which was beaten by Pickford. On the rebound, Keane narrowly beat Felix to the ball and cleared.

The goal was the architecture of Chelsea’s two best players. Fernandez struck another sublime pass which landed perfectly on the left foot of Chilwell, who cushioned his cross in the centre. Keane was first to take the ball for Everton, but the defender was too off balance to make good contact. His half shot reached Felix, who took a touch, took aim and with deft accuracy rolled the ball home to the Pickford far post.


Keane almost made amends early on for his defensive error, clearing his marker as the ball was whipped in by Demarai Gray but failing to make the contact the cross deserved.

The visitors were encouraged and with 20 minutes to go they were even. A corner from the right was met by James Tarkowski who pushed over the Chelsea defense to head the ball, and as it fell into the six-yard box, Doucoure acted quicker to nod over the line, while Havertz tried in vain to hook up. .

Chelsea responded as a team buoyed by a new confidence. James won a penalty when he was slammed to the ground by Tarkowski. This gave Havertz a chance to restore the lead, which he duly took, sending Pickford in the wrong direction.

But Everton would not be beaten. With a minute to go, Doucoure played the ball to Simms, who zoomed past a weak challenge from Koulibaly and widened past Kepa Arrizabalaga to secure what could be a valuable point in Everton’s battle for survival.

Read more: Graham Potter ‘will win the fucking Champions League’ *why* were Chelsea a bit of a rubbish?


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