LONDON – Gylfi Sigurdsson, Oumar Niasse and Tom Davies were on target as Everton eased past Crystal Palace 3-1 on Saturday to climb to ninth in the Premier League table.
After a committed but low-quality first half ended goalless, Everton struck twice within six minutes after the break as Sigurdsson beat Wayne Hennessey with a deflected shot before Niasse’s header doubled the advantage.
Midfielder Davies all but sealed the victory with a low finish in the 75th minute against a Palace side who showed little threat until Luka Milivojevic converted a late penalty after Ashley Williams handled the ball.
Everton leapfrogged Bournemouth to climb to ninth on 34 points from 27 games. Palace are 14th with 27 points.
* Stoke City blew a chance to move out of the Premier League’s bottom three when Charlie Adam missed a 90th-minute penalty as they were held to a 1-1 draw by Brighton and Hove Albion.
The substitute’s spot-kick was brilliantly saved by Mat Ryan – and moments later another replacement, Anthony Knockaert, headed Mame Diouf’s effort off the line to preserve Brighton’s hard-earned point.
The visitors had taken a first-half lead through a classy goal by Jose Izquierdo on 32 minutes, but Xherdan Shaqiri equalised for much-improved Stoke midway through the second half.
The draw left Stoke 18th, while Brighton are 13th, but still just three points clear of safety.
* West Ham overcame Watford 2-0 in a game with plenty of chances at the London Stadium, putting the Hammers level on points with their opponents in the middle of the Premier League table.
The home side’s Mexican striker Javier Hernandez broke the deadlock in the 38th minute, heading in at the far post after winger Michail Antonio wove through the Watford defence to send in a long cross from the left.
West Ham’s Austrian midfielder Marko Arnautovic, back in the side after a hamstring injury, scored from close range in the 78th minute to make it 2-0.
The win leaves the two sides level on 30 points apiece in the middle of the table, though still just six points above the relegation zone.
* Swansea City edged further away from the Premier League relegation zone as Ki Sung-yueng scored a late goal to beat Burnley 1-0 at the Liberty Stadium.
Swansea enjoyed more than two-thirds of possession but both teams struggled to create clear-cut opportunities in the first half.
It changed after the interval when visitors Burnley threatened to score with a stinging half-volley from winger Johann Berg Gudmundsson, but he was denied with a stunning fingertip save by Swansea goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski.
Swansea boss Carlos Carvalhal introduced January signing Andre Ayew to boost to the attacking line and was rewarded with a string of chances before Ki’s drilled effort from the edge of the area clinched victory with less than 10 minutes left.
The victory moved Swansea up to 15th in the table, two points clear of the bottom three, and extended their unbeaten run to five matches.