Hajduk Split 1-1 Everton (agg: 1-3): Gylfi Sigurdsson nets wonder-strike as Toffees progress
Last Updated: 25/08/17 8:06am
Gylfi Sigurdsson scored an audacious 45-yard lob as Everton drew 1-1 with Hajduk Split to reach the Europa League group stages, winning 3-1 on aggregate.
Making his first start since his £45m move from Swansea, Sigurdsson scored 16 seconds after half-time with an incredible effort from distance. The goal levelled the scores on the night after Josip Radosevic had hammered the hosts in front with a powerful effort from 30 yards in a tie which Everton were leading 2-0 after the first-leg.
Jordan Pickford, who was called up to the England squad on Thursday, also sent a message to Gareth Southgate by saving a second-half penalty from Said Ahmed Said.
The draw for the Europa League group stages will be conducted on Friday lunchtime.
Hajduk Split: Stipica (7), Juranovic (6), Nizic (6), Lopez (6), Memolla (7), Gentsoglou (6), Radosevic (8), Barry (6), Vlasic (6), Said (5), Erceg (7)
Everton: Pickford (8), Martina (6), Keane (7), Williams (7), Baines (7); Lookman (5), Besic (6), Schneiderlin (7), Sigurdsson (9), Calvert-Lewin (7), Rooney (8)
Subs: Lennon (6), Davies (6)
Man of the match: Gylfi Sigurdsson
Pickford, signed from Sunderland for an initial £25m this summer, had to be alert in the early stages to repel a low drive from Zoran Erceg.
But there was nothing the goalkeeper could do about Radosevic's strike on 42 minutes.
There looked little danger when the ball dropped to the midfielder but he pinged a sensational effort which swerved in the air and into the roof of the net.
The home fans, though, were silenced 14 seconds after the restart when Sigurdsson scored an outrageous effort out of nothing.
Gylfi Sigurdsson was handed his first start since joining from Swansea. He played in midfield alongside Muhamed Besic while Wayne Rooney also featured after revealing he retired from international football. Ademola Lookman and Dominic Calvert-Lewin played off Rooney in a strong line-up named by Ronald Koeman.
The 27-year-old chased down a ball down the right flank near the half-way line and despite being off balance fired a wondrous effort over the goalkeeper.
The goal meant the hosts needed three to win the tie but they gave it a good go.
After 64 minutes, Ashley Williams conceded a penalty when fouling Erceg as the Croatian turned into the box. However, Pickford produced a fine stop down to his right to push out Said's spot-kick.
Man of the match - Gylfi Sigurdsson
A game which will be remembered for a piece of world-class finishing from the new Everton man, who announced himself onto the scene in the best possible way. His all-round play in behind Rooney, also who impressed again, would have pleased Ronald Koeman.
- Everton have won nine their last 11 European games (including qualifiers), losing the other two matches.
- For the second consecutive campaign under Ronald Koeman, Everton have not lost any of their opening six games of the season in all competitions (W4 D2).
- Sigurdsson made his first start in European club competition since March 2014 (for Spurs v Benfica in the Europa League), and also registered his first goal since April 2013 (also for Spurs in the Europa League, v Basel).
- Indeed, the Toffees registered more shots on target in the opening 14 seconds of the second half than they did in the entire first half (0).
- After conceding all four penalties he faced at Sunderland (all in the Premier League), Jordan Pickford saved the first penalty he faced as an Everton player.
Everton continue their tough start to the new Premier League season with a trip to champions Chelsea on Sunday.