Three and easy for Everton
Everton dented Wolves' survival hopes with a comfortable 3-0 win over Mick McCarthy's struggling side at Molineux
Last Updated: 09/04/11 3:07pm
Everton dented Wolves' survival hopes with a comfortable 3-0 win over Mick McCarthy's struggling side at Molineux.
First half goals from Jermaine Beckford, Phil Neville and Diniyar Bilyaletdinov put the game beyond Wolves at the break.
Beckford broke the deadlock after 21 minutes when he capitalised on slack defending to head home Leon Osman's cross for his ninth goal of the season.
Everton skipper Neville added a second with a fine rising shot past Wayne Hennessey six minutes before the break.
Things got worse for Wolves right on the stroke of half-time when Bilyaletdinov smashed home a superb swerving shot high into the net from the edge of the box.
Wolves tried to rally in the second half, but apart from a few scares Everton comfortably held on to take all three points.
The defeat leaves Wolves second from bottom of the table, while Everton are now just one point behind city rivals Liverpool.
The loss of key striker Kevin Doyle through knee ligament damage has had a massive impact on the make-up of the side as he was the ideal player to operate in a 4-5-1 formation.
With Wolves starting with two upfront, the home side found themselves exposed in midfield without the extra man and their defending also left a lot to be desired.
Wolves started purposely and Adlene Guedioura had a shot blocked by Neville on the edge of the box at the expense of a corner.
Osman came to Everton's rescue by clearing Steven Fletcher's header off the line from a Matt Jarvis flag-kick after seven minutes.
It was against the run of play when Beckford put Everton ahead after 21 minutes.
John Heitinga found Osman in space out on the right and his cross picked out Beckford, who got in between Christophe Berra and Richard Stearman and in front of Wayne Hennessey to nod home.
Wolves tried to respond instantly and Guedioura was only just off target with a curling attempt from 20 yards out.
Beckford came close to doubling Everton's lead after 31 minutes.
Osman easily shook off the challenge of Berra on the right flank and his cross found the unmarked Beckford.
His downward header contained plenty of power but Hennessey was able to adjust and parry the shot away to his left.
A dipping attempt from Jamie O'Hara was deflected just wide and Sylvan Ebanks-Blake had a shot blocked from close range from a Jarvis centre.
But after 38 minutes Neville doubled Everton's lead.
Hennessey, at full stretch, managed to keep out a misdirected header by George Elokobi from Leighton Baines' corner.
But the ball landed at the feet of Neville on the edge of the Wolves box and his rising shot flew past Hennessey into the roof of the net.
On the stroke of half-time Bilyaletdinov made it 3-0.
The ball broke to him just inside the Wolves half and his 25-yard drive flew past the despairing dive of Hennessey.
McCarthy made a half-time substitution with Michael Kightly replacing Ebanks-Blake, who had sustained a hamstring injury.
Bilyaletdinov became the first player to be yellow-carded after 51 minutes for bringing down Guedioura.
The home side saw plenty of the ball in the the second period.
Skipper Karl Henry gave the home fans something to cheer as his powerful drive was turned aside by Tim Howard.
The Everton keeper then parried a Guedioura header from a Jarvis centre.
In a rare second-half Everton attack, Berra blocked an effort from Osman.
Substitute Victor Anichebe had a shot deflected just wide of the post with Hennessey wrong-footed.Bilyaletdinov should have made it 4-0 but shot over from close range after Elokobi mis-kicked.
|Wolverhampton Wanderers||Team Statistics||Everton|
|0||1st Half Goals||3|
|2||Shots on Target||5|
|6||Shots off Target||4|