x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Saha double fits the bill as Everton's revival continues

Louis Saha showed that, when he is fit, he is one of the Premier League's deadliest strikers with a double as Everton strolled to victory at home to Blackburn yesterday.

LIVERPOOL // Louis Saha showed that, when he is fit, he is one of the Premier League's deadliest strikers with a double as Everton strolled to victory at home to Blackburn yesterday. Saha scored after 22 and 54 minutes and then defender Joseph Yobo grabbed the third for the hosts, punishing poor defending at a corner after the impressive Paul Robinson had denied the French striker a hat-trick goal. Afterwards, David Moyes described the former Manchester forward as "the best I have ever worked with".

Moyes' side have endured a slow start to the campaign, but they appear to be back on track following this fine win and clean sheet against a disappointing Rovers side who look relegation fodder. While Moyes' worries look to be easing, Rovers boss Sam Allardyce must be seriously concerned now about his side, who have won just one league game all term and were feeble for much of this clash. This had been Everton's worse start to a league season since 2004, with only one win in their opening four games prior to this match.

Their intent to correct that unwanted statistic was evident from the outset. First Leon Osman saw a shot on the turn deflected inches wide, and then Steven Pienaar's cross was headed onto the roof of the net by Saha. After 22 minutes, Everton were in front. Leighton Baines fired in a free-kick from the left and Saha arrived at the near post to turn the ball past Robinson. Everton who extended their lead soon after the break. Marouane Fellaini's cross sailed in from the right and Saha got above Pascal Chimbonda with ease to send his header wide of Robinson's dive.

The former Tottenham goalkeeper then saved superbly to keep out Osman, but Everton soon got their third. Baines' corner from the right after 58 minutes hit Ryan Nelsen and fell invitingly for Yobo to fire in from a couple of yards out. Everton keeper Tim Howard was at last called into action to save from David Dunn and El-Hadji Diouf, while Everton sent on Jo to replace the impressive Saha with 16 minutes left.

Moyes will now hope the injury-prone forward can stay off the treatment table and in the goals. * PA Sport