Six Things We Learned: Swansea City

Everton marched on under Sam Allardyce with a 3-1 victory over Swansea City on Monday night.

The win at Goodison Park saw the Blues climb to ninth in the Premier League table, just one point shy of eighth-placed Leicester City and, perhaps surprisingly given the respective starts to the season, six points behind Tottenham Hotspur.

Below, we pick out six talking points from the match…

1. Everton The Comeback Kings

Boss Allardyce extended his winning start to life as Everton manager to five games in all competitions - but had to do it the hard way after Leroy Fer put the Swans ahead at Goodison Park.

However, Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s instinctive strike, another Gylfi Sigurdsson wonder goal and another Wayne Rooney penalty turned the game on its head.

The Toffees have now won 14 points from losing positions this season, more than any other side in the Premier League.

2. Home Comforts Continue

Everton’s comeback win against Swansea was their fourth consecutive Premier League triumph on home soil.

And even in spite of a disastrous start to the 2017/18 season, the Toffees’ domestic home record for the calendar year remains mightily impressive, with 15 wins from 19 games.

Everton have scored 47 goals in those fixtures, second only to Manchester City (52) in the top-flight.

And with 25 points on the board after 18 games of the current term - just one point worse off at the same stage in 2016/17 - Allardyce will have his eyes firmly on chasing the clubs currently occupying the top eight places in the league ladder.

3. Gana Back At His Combative Best

Idrissa Gana Gueye’s performance against the Swans earned him Sky Sports’ and our own Twitter poll for Man of the Match.

It’s safe to say the Senegal international was at his energetic best, patrolling the Blues’ midfield and providing the foundations to allow more attack-minded midfield teammates Wayne Rooney and Gylfi Sigurdsson to hurt Paul Clement’s side.

Last season, despite missing more than a month of the campaign due to competing in the Africa Cup of Nations, Gana recorded more tackles (135) than any other Premier League player.

One of the bargains of the 2016/17 campaign, the comparisons with Gana and N’Golo Kante were quick to come, a logical observation given both players’ similar physique and on-field attributes.

Gana currently sits second in the same table with 66 tackles this season, behind Leicester City’s Wilfred Ndidi (77) but comfortably above Chelsea’s Kante (51), whom he will come up against at Goodison Park on Saturday.

4. Calvert-Lewin’s Predatory Instincts Developing

Speaking in mid-October, Dominic Calvert-Lewin told evertontv of his need to add goals in order to take his game to the next level.

His goal against Swansea proved his predatory instincts are improving with every game, reacting first to Lukasz Fabianski’s penalty save to pull the Blues level at a vital time just before the half-time interval.

Calvert-Lewin has been directly involved - either scored or assisted - 11 goals in all competitions this campaign, while also winning two penalties - against Brighton and Liverpool - along the way.

Only Wayne Rooney can boast being involved in more (12). Not bad for a 20-year-old?

5. Another Game, Another Rooney Record

Wayne Rooney continues to go from strength to strength in his midfield role, contributing another goal and assist against Swansea.

His assist for Sigurdsson’s second-half strike saw him up to third in the Premier League’s all-time assist table with 103.

Cesc Fabregas’ 110 assists is the next target, while Ryan Giggs leads the way with 162.

Rooney’s successful 73rd-minute penalty took his goals tally in the league to 208, meaning he has now been directly involved in a staggering 311 goals in England’s top-flight.

6. Future Is Bright For Young Blues

The average age of the Everton side that finished the game against Swansea was a reassuringly youthful 23.8 years.

England youth internationals Mason Holgate, Tom Davies, Ademola Lookman, Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Jonjoe Kenny were all on the pitch to see out a fourth consecutive win in the league.

Three of those players - Lookman, Calvert-Lewin and Kenny - were, of course, part of the England Under-20s side that lifted the World Cup last summer.

Kieran Dowell and Callum Connolly - the other two Everton representatives from that squad - are currently performing excellently for their respective loan clubs, Nottingham Forest and Ipswich Town, and both scored eye-catching goals at the weekend.

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