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Benteke earns Palace draw at Everton

Christian Benteke

Benteke has scored five goals in six Premier League appearances against Everton

Everton missed the chance to move second in the Premier League as Christian Benteke earned Crystal Palace a deserved point at Goodison Park.

The hosts led when Romelu Lukaku curled a 20-yard free-kick over the Palace wall and into the bottom left corner.

Palace improved after the break, levelling when Benteke met Joel Ward’s cross with towering far-post header.

The visitors almost claimed a fourth straight win but Damien Delaney’s header was ruled out for offside.

The point was enough to move the Toffees up to third place, four points behind leaders Manchester City, though the rest of the weekend’s top-flight fixtures are still to be played.

The Eagles, who continued their recent revival after taking just one point from their opening three matches, remain seventh.

  • All the reaction from Goodison Park

‘Soft’ decision denied Palace victory

Ahead of kick-off Palace might have settled for a point against an Everton side that has made an impressive start under Ronald Koeman, but they perhaps left Goodison Park aggrieved not to take all three.

There was some debate over the free-kick from which Everton scored, awarded after Delaney – making his 600th league appearance – raised his boot as he tried to clear a loose ball.

His clearance hit Everton captain Phil Jagielka’s raised arms but referee Jonathan Moss penalised the Palace defender, awarding a free-kick that Lukaku converted with a sublime strike.

“It was a harsh decision. Jags put his head down a little bit,” Delaney said afterwards.

Palace also questioned why Delaney’s second-half header from Ward’s clipped pass was ruled out for offside.

Delaney was in an onside position when the cross came in but television replays showed team-mate James McArthur had strayed offside and was perhaps blocking Maarten Stekelenburg’s view when the defender headed the ball into the net.

“I’m not sure James was in the keeper’s line of vision. It was a bit soft,” added Delaney.

More to follow.

Live Text

Match ends, Everton 1, Crystal Palace 1.

Second Half ends, Everton 1, Crystal Palace 1.

Tom Cleverley (Everton) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Tom Cleverley (Everton).

Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Substitution, Crystal Palace. Lee Chung-yong replaces Andros Townsend.

Corner, Everton. Conceded by Wilfried Zaha.

Foul by Tom Cleverley (Everton).

Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Yannick Bolasie (Everton) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Yannick Bolasie (Everton).

Joel Ward (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt missed. Seamus Coleman (Everton) right footed shot from the centre of the box is too high. Assisted by Romelu Lukaku.

Substitution, Everton. Ramiro Funes Mori replaces Bryan Oviedo.

Romelu Lukaku (Everton) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Martin Kelly (Crystal Palace).

Attempt missed. James Tomkins (Crystal Palace) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Joe Ledley with a headed pass.

Substitution, Crystal Palace. Yohan Cabaye replaces James McArthur.

Idrissa Gueye (Everton) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Idrissa Gueye (Everton).

Andros Townsend (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Substitution, Everton. Kevin Mirallas replaces Ross Barkley.

Attempt saved. James Tomkins (Crystal Palace) header from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Joel Ward with a headed pass.

Attempt blocked. Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace) header from the right side of the six yard box is blocked. Assisted by Jason Puncheon with a cross.

Corner, Crystal Palace. Conceded by Tom Cleverley.

Attempt blocked. Joel Ward (Crystal Palace) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Corner, Crystal Palace. Conceded by Ashley Williams.

Attempt blocked. Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace) left footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked.

Corner, Crystal Palace. Conceded by Seamus Coleman.

Corner, Crystal Palace. Conceded by Bryan Oviedo.

Foul by Gareth Barry (Everton).

Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Offside, Everton. Bryan Oviedo tries a through ball, but Yannick Bolasie is caught offside.

Attempt blocked. Andros Townsend (Crystal Palace) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Gareth Barry (Everton) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Gareth Barry (Everton).

Andros Townsend (Crystal Palace) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Andros Townsend (Crystal Palace) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Attempt missed. Phil Jagielka (Everton) header from the centre of the box misses to the left. Assisted by Ross Barkley with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Everton. Conceded by Martin Kelly.

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/37447970