Premier League • England

Frank Lampard barely recognises uninspiring Everton; details Dominic Calvert-Lewin importance

Frank Lampard of Everton

Frank Lampard believes his side ‘didn’t look like an Everton team’ in their 2-1 home defeat to Manchester United, while the manager also spoke about the return of Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

Everton started well and took the lead in the fifth minute when Alex Iwobi sent a top strike past David de Gea. However, the Toffees soon let their foot off the gas and this allowed Manchester United to take control.

The visitors were level by the 15th minute as Everton were caught out and Anthony Martial sent Antony through on goal. And the Brazil winger made no mistake with his left-footed finish.

Then it was the turn of Cristiano Ronaldo to get among the goals. He registered his 700th career club goal shortly before half time, having come on for the injured Martial.

Marcus Rashford scored with 10 minutes remaining but saw his goal ruled out due to a handball. This was lucky for Everton, as they looked poor defensively when allowing Rashford to go one on one with Jordan Pickford.

Everton threw pretty much everything at Man Utd in the latter stages but failed to get an equaliser. This saw them handed their third defeat in the league this season.

During a post-match interview with BBC Sport, Lampard admitted he struggled to recognise his team due to how they played. “[We should have] played better in the first half,” Lampard said. “We were off our usual standard. We weren’t our usual selves in the first half. It didn’t look like an Everton team to me. We were a bit off.

“When you make clear mistakes Manchester United can punish you. It was a good reaction, good spirit but the first half was not enough against a team of that level.

Everton didn’t ‘calm the game down’, says Lampard

“Sometimes we needed to put our foot on the ball and make some extra passes. Players have to make the decision to calm the game down. There can be an urgency to react.

“We’re a team who are building and putting things together so maybe a performance like that is understandable ater some of our games lately.”

Lampard was then asked about the return of Calvert-Lewin. The striker is working his way back to full fitness after a knee problem and Lampard has stressed just how important he is.

“He’s a big player for us. I haven’t had enough of him. He’ll be the most frustrated one about that,” Lampard said.

“It was a plus to get him on the pitch for 20 minutes. Another week of training will help him get more robust and match fit. It’s nice to see him come on. We want and need him fit here.”

Everton will be looking to get back to winning ways when they play Tottenham in their next game. That takes place on Saturday at 17:30.

Man Utd, meanwhile, are back in action on Thursday when Omonia FC visit Old Trafford in the Europa League. Man Utd’s next league game is against Newcastle on Sunday October 16.

Ten Hag reacted to the Man Utd win by praising a midfielder and revealing what injury Martial is having to deal with.