Everton and Leicester City’s Bonfire Night clash at Goodison Park was interrupted by a firework after a rocket stick landed on the pitch. Referee David Coote was forced to temporarily stop play before Conor Coady carried the object out of harm’s way.
The two sides were playing out a relatively tame first half on Merseyside before Youri Tielemans set the game alight with his sensational long-range strike on the brink of half-time. But there could’ve been a firework display on the pitch before the Belgian’s moment of brilliance after a used metre-long rocket stick landed inside the stadium.
Reporters at Goodison Park claimed the firework came from outside the stadium and the Liverpool Echo posted an image on Twitter showing Everton defender Coady carrying the projectile. Coote was in conversation with the police pitchside after the incident before resuming the action.
Just moments later, Tielemans fired Leicester ahead when the ball found its way out to his feet on the edge of the box before he took one touch to tee himself up and aimed a looping effort past a helpless Jordan Pickford. It was a deserved opener for the visitors after spending the majority of the first half as the better side.
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Everton will be desperate to return to the win column, with the Toffees triumphing in just one of their last five games – a 3-0 win against Crystal Palace on October 22. Frank Lampard’s side are 14th, just two points above the relegation zone after winning only three of their opening 13 outings.
Leicester are in even more dire need of a victory after their disastrous start to the campaign. The Foxes have got their mojo back in recent weeks, though, winning two of their last three, and they will go level on points with Everton if they hold onto the lead at Goodison.
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Tielemans’ goal was a reminder of his sheer quality and raised the fact of his expiring contract once again. The 25-year-old will be available on a free transfer at the end of the season, or for a cut-price fee in January, with Arsenal and Manchester United among the clubs heavily linked.
There is reportedly next to no chance of Tielemans extending his contract at the King Power Stadium, so whichever club he lands at will no doubt boast one of the transfer coups of 2023.
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