Andriy Yarmolenko scored twice on his first Premier League start as West Ham won their first game of the season in a 2-1 victory at Everton.
Yarmolenko made an instant impact when he put the Hammers ahead after just 11 minutes when Marko Arnautovic led a quick break from midfield and unselfishly squared the ball for the Ukrainian to fire home.
The same man doubled the lead just after the half-hour mark when West Ham made the most of a poor Jordan Pickford clearance and Yarmolenko eventually powered into the box and curled a beautiful effort into the far corner.
Gylfi Sigurdsson pulled a goal back right on the stroke of half time with a powerful header to give Everton a lift, but Arnautovic snuffed that out as he finished off a good move just after an hour.
Everton had several chances to pull one back including Oumar Niasse thumping the cross bar with close-range volley when he really should have scored.
West Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini was able to celebrate his 65th birthday in style and the win gives him some breathing space heading into a tough run of fixtures including Chelsea, Manchester United and Tottenham being three of their next four league opponents.
Everton v West Ham Opta stats
- West Ham manager Manuel Pellegrini has won five of his seven Premier League clashes against Everton (D2); he has faced the Toffees more times in the competition without losing than any other side.
- Everton have won just one of their last 13 Premier League games played on a Sunday, with this their tenth defeat in those matches (D2).
- West Ham have beaten Everton in consecutive league meetings for the first time since March 1973; both of their last two Premier League wins have now come against the Toffees (also in May 2018).
- Everton have now lost three of their last six meetings with West Ham (W2 D1), as many as their previous 31 combined in all competitions (W18 D10 L3).
- West Ham’s Andriy Yarmolenko is the fourth Ukrainian player to score in the Premier League (also Rebrov, Shevchenko and Voronin) and the first since Andriy Voronin for Liverpool against Spurs in May 2008.
- Andriy Yarmolenko is just the fourth West Ham player to score a brace on his first Premier League start for the club (also Trevor Sinclair, David Di Michele and Demba Ba) and the first since Demba Ba against West Brom in February 2011.
- Since the start of 2018, only Mohamed Salah (23) has had a hand in more Premier League goals than West Ham forward Marko Arnautovic (16 - nine goals, seven assists).
- Marko Arnautovic has been directly involved in 11 of West Ham's last 16 Premier League goals (seven goals, four assists).
- Everton midfielder Gylfi Sigurdsson's goal was just the third header he has scored in his Premier League career (47th goal overall), and his first since January 2016 for Swansea City against Manchester United.
- West Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini is the first manager to win on his birthday in the Premier League since Arsene Wenger on October 22nd last season - also against Everton.