Theo Walcott’s late 87th minute header rescues a point for Everton in a desperately drab affair.
Everton welcomed relegation threatened Aston Villa to Goodison Park fresh on the back of scathing criticism from Seamus Coleman and Carlo Ancelotti following an uncharacteristically below par performance in Sunday’s 3-0 defeat to Wolves.
The Everton manager made five changes to his starting line-up. Mason Holgate and Andre Gomes recovered from injuries to start and Bernard and Alex Iwobi were recalled after both wide players came off the bench in Sunday’s game at Wolverhampton Wanderers. Seamus Coleman was restored to the starting XI, too.
Everton tested the Villa backline early on as Dominic Calvert-Lewin twice fired on goal before Bernard clipped the crossbar with a miscued cross.
The game really lacked quality. The first goal come from the first shot on target on 72 minutes. Andre Gomes gave away a cheap freekick. The left foot of Hourihane delivered an inswinging free-kick that just needed Ezri Konsa to flick home with his outstretched leg. His first Premier Legaue goal looked to have earned struggling Villa a crucial win at Goodison Park.
Aston Villa should have made it 2-0 shortly after. A superb cross from Grealish found substitute El Ghazi who somehow managed to fire over the bar from close range.
The miss proved costly for the Villans as with four minutes left, Everton substitute Theo Walcott’s looping header crossed the line before Konsa could clear.