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Published: 15:18 | 16/12/15

Everton and Palace draw


Romelu Lukaku struck nine minutes from time to cancel out Scott Dann's header and earn Everton a share of the spoils as they drew 1-1 with Crystal Palace at Goodison Park.

Romelu Lukaku struck nine minutes from time to cancel out Scott Dann's header and earn Everton a share of the spoils as they drew 1-1 with Crystal Palace at Goodison Park.

The Belgian international striker notched his sixth goal in successive games and fiftieth of his Toffees career after it looked like Dann's 76th minute header against the run of play might claim all three points for Alan Pardew's side.

The result means Palace climb two places to sixth, while Everton are ninth.

It was a bright opening from both sides, with the home team showing some great touches while Palace looked dangerous going forward.

The visitors created the first clear-cut chance of the encounter just before the quarter hour mark when Connor Wickham drew a good save from Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard after getting on the end of Yannick Bolasie's floated cross.

Lukaku was unlucky not to put Everton ahead on 20 minutes after combining well with Ross Barkley, but his shot hit the outside of the post and rebounded away to safety.

Arouna Kone shot just over the crossbar moments later as the home side came forward again.

Everton had another chance to open the scoring on the half hour, but Lukaku was unable to connect with Brendan Galloway's flick after Barkley had linked up well with Gerard Deulofeu to create uncertainty in the Palace defence.

Everton continued to threaten but couldn't find a way through as the first half ended goalless.

The home side continued to dominate in the early stages of the second half and came agonisingly close to going ahead when Barkley's deft free-kick was headed against his own crossbar by Wickham.

Palace goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey did superbly to keep out Tom Cleverley's rasping volley just after the hour mark as Everton threatened again.

Toffees fans were given some cheer with the introduction of Leighton Baines for Galloway on 62 minutes for the England international's first appearance of the season.

Roberto Martinez's side continued to dominate, but were hit by a sucker punch on 76 minutes when Dann shrugged off the attentions of Gareth Barry following a rare Palace corner to head Alan Pardew's men in front.

Lukaku rattled the woodwork for a second time with a crisp volley moments later as Everton looked to hit back immediately.

But the Belgian international didn't have to wait long for his fourteenth goal of the season and sixth in succession in the league when he latched onto Deulofeu's low ball across the six-yard box on 81 minutes to bring the sides level with a simple finish.

Neither side seemed happy to settle for a point as the game headed towards injury time and Palace may well have had a penalty when Funes Mori appeared to catch substitute Jordon Mutch inside the area, but the referee waved play on.

But there was to be no winner on the night as both sides were forced to settle for a point, with Pardew undoubtedly the happier of the two managers.

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