Sports Desk, Mar 18 (EFE).- Chelsea’s winning streak ground to a halt Saturday against Everton, who battled back to equalize on two occasions and came away from Stamford Bridge with what could prove to be a crucial point as the Toffees seek to avoid relegation from the Premier League.
Coming off three straight wins, including a Champions League triumph that sent them through to the quarterfinals, Graham Potter’s men were favored against Everton, even with the Merseyside club’s recent improvement under new coach Sean Dyche.
The hosts had all of the initiative in the first half, but only Joao Felix troubled Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford.
Kai Havertz tested Pickford four minutes into the second half and Felix put Chelsea ahead in the 53rd minute with some help from the post.
Christian Pulisic looked to have made it 2-0 in the 56th, only to see the flag go up for offside.
Instead, the visitors pulled level in the 69th minute thanks to Abdoulaye Doucoure’s header off a corner. Havertz was quick to knock the ball back out, but goal-line technology confirmed that it had crossed the line before the German made contact.
Chelsea got a chance to reclaim the lead after James Tarkowski brought down Chelsea’s Reece James in the box and the referee pointed to the spot.
Havertz, who missed a penalty against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League tie but converted on the retake after the defenders were cited for encroachment, hit the target on the first try to give the Blues a 2-1 edge with his third goal in three games.
In the 89th minute, late sub Ellis Simms brought Everton back on terms with his first Premier League goal and the scoreboard read 2-2 at the final whistle.
The result leaves Chelsea 10th in the table on 38 points, while Everton are 15th with 26 points, just 2 above the drop zone. EFE