LONDON: Dominic Calvert-Lewin scored after just 42 seconds as Everton ended their losing run with a 3-2 win against Fulham on Sunday.
Calvert-Lewin maintained his fine form to put Carlo Ancelotti’s side ahead inside a minute at Craven Cottage.
Bobby Decordova-Reid equalized for Fulham, but England striker Calvert-Lewin netted again and Abdoulaye Doucoure got Everton’s third before half-time.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek reduced the deficit in the second half, but Everton held on to win for the first time in five league games.
After a three-game losing streak dented their bid to finish in the top four, Everton are up to sixth place.
Everton were boosted by the return of Richarlison following a three-match ban, with Ancelotti’s team unbeaten this season when the Brazilian forward, Calvert-Lewin and James Rodriguez all start together. Suitably energized by the restoration of their attacking trio, Everton made the perfect start.
Decordova-Reid gave the ball away and Richarlison advanced into the Fulham area before whipping over a low cross.
Tosin Adarabioyo made a hash of his attempted clearance and Calvert-Lewin bundled in for 12th goal of the season.
Fulham equalized in the 15th minute when Tom Cairney’s pass picked out Decordova-Reid and he eased clear of Yerry Mina to drive a cool finish past Jordan Pickford.
But Everton hit back as Calvert-Lewin netted again in the 29th minute.
Alex Iwobi’s incisive run opened up the Fulham defense and James found Lucas Digne, whose cross found Calvert-Lewin for a clinical close-range finish.
Fulham’s abject defending was all the incentive Everton needed to keep pushing forward and they scored again in the 35th minute
Digne had time and space to cross from the left and his delivery was met by Doucoure, who was under no pressure as he headed past Areola. Fulham squandered a chance to get back in the match after 68 minutes when Ben Godfrey gave away a penalty with a trip on Ruben Loftus-Cheek.
Meanwhile, Sheffield United remained without a win this season after losing 1-0 to West Ham courtesy of Sebastien Haller’s second-half goal on Sunday
The striker, filling in for the injured Michail Antonio, lashed a shot into the top corner from the edge of the area in the 56th minute after Pablo Fornals’ effort had been blocked.
Oli McBurnie struck a fierce shot against the crossbar as the hosts battled for an equalizer, but they fell to an eighth loss in nine matches and stayed in last place with just one point.
It is a huge contrast to the last campaign, when United challenged for a European qualification place in its first season back in the top flight before slipping away from contention in the final weeks.
West Ham climbed into the top half with its fourth win of the season.