August 14, 2022

Talk about shooting yourself in the foot

After Everton took an early lead over Brentford the atmosphere at Goodison Park was rocking. Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s opener gave the fans inside the ground even more hope that Premier League survival would be assured by the end of the day.

Their ecstasy was short-lived, soon turning to fear as Jarrad Branthwaite received a straight red card for a foul on Brentford attacker Ivan Toney.

The defender, making just his third start of the season for the Toffees, was unable to deal with the movement of Toney who had got in behind him following a long ball up field.

With Branthwaite unable to catch up in time he brought down the Brentford talisman while he was bearing down on goal, giving referee Michael Oliver no option but to send him off.

The decision was met with instant appeals from Everton players who felt Richarlison could have had a penalty for his shirt being pulled in the seconds prior to the sending off.

Momentum swung in favour of Brentford after the red card

Nonetheless the referee stuck by his initial call and was greeted with a roar of boos as Frank Lampard’s side were reduced to 10 men with over an hour of the game still left to play.

Tensions were high on Merseyside as the Toffees knew that a win would all-but guarantee another season in the top flight after their relegation rivals, Burnley and Leeds United, both failed to win in their respective fixtures.

Everton had started brightest but all momentum had swung in favour of Brentford as the Bees looked to capitalise on the extra man advantage.

Eventually Brentford were able to make their pressure pay as Yoane Wissa equalised for the west Londoners from a tight angle, via a deflection off Seamus Coleman, with roughly 10 minutes to go before half time.

Then, despite their numerical disadvantage, Everton won a penalty just before half-time, with Richarlison tucked away to re-establish the home side’s lead.

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