Everton Vs. Chelsea, 2012 Premier League: Toffees Grab Surprising Win

Chelsea have put a serious dent in their chances to finish in the top three, while the race for fourth just got a lot more interesting. The Blues put in a poor performance at Goodison Park on Saturday, as Everton played one of their best games of the season in a 2-0 victory. Unlike some of Chelsea's other upset losses and draws this year, this was not unlucky. The Toffees were the better side, and deserve their win.

On-loan attacking midfielder Steven Pienaar found the opener after just five minutes. Based on the way Everton's played against big teams this season, Andre Villas-Boas likely knew right then and there that he was in for a tough task. Not only were Everton hard to break down for the rest of the half, but they did well to create a few more chances of their own.

The Blues' defense and Petr Cech looked more or less asleep in the 71st minute, when Landon Donovan found Denis Stracqualursi with a through ball. The Argentinian striker finished to make it 2-0, and Chelsea would never get a goal back. The assist was, incredibly, Donovan's third league assist in his short loan spell at Goodison Park.

Villas-Boas would make the odd decision to bring on Romelu Lukaku for Juan Mata in the 78th minute, but Lukaku would find himself on the end of a great chance just a minute later. He almost poked in a short-range goal from a set piece, but Tim Howard did well to get across his goal to Lukaku and make a point-blank save. Chelsea didn't do much to create clear-cut chances throughout the match, and Everton will be thrilled with their performance.

For more on the two teams, check out Chelsea FC blog We Ain't Got No History and Everton FC blog Royal Blue Mersey.

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