Romelu Lukaku scored two goals and set up another in his first Premier League start for Everton, which beat Newcastle 3-2 to remain the only undefeated team in English soccer’s top division.
Lukaku scored twice in the first half and also provided the pass for Ross Barkley’s goal as Everton led 3-0 at halftime at Goodison Park in Liverpool last night. Newcastle substitute Yohan Cabaye scored six minutes into the second half and Loic Remy added the second goal for the visiting team near the end.
“We did the job, we won, we’re still unbeaten, so we have to continue like this,” Lukaku said in a televised interview.
The win lifted Everton four places to fourth in the 20-team standings with 12 points, the same tally from six games as its last league title-winning season in 1986-87. Newcastle remains 16th, with seven points. Arsenal is top with 15 points, followed by Liverpool and Tottenham on 13.
Lukaku, 20, joined Chelsea from Anderlecht in his native Belgium in August 2011 and spent last season at West Bromwich Albion, where he rose to prominence by scoring three goals in a 5-5 draw with Manchester United in Alex Ferguson’s 1,500th and final match in charge of the English champion. In two league appearances for Everton, Lukaku has scored three goals.
“Sometimes you see a number nine that is powerful and has great physical presence, I think what Romelu also brings is a great technical awareness of what’s around him,” Everton manager Roberto Martinez said of his loan signing.
Everton took the lead after five minutes as Kevin Mirallas drove down the right wing and sent a low ball across the penalty area for Lukaku to finish with a right-foot shot under Newcastle goalkeeper Tim Krul.
After another 20 minutes it was 2-0 as Lukaku ran at the center of Newcastle’s defense before delivering a pass for Barkley to run onto and score with a low shot from about 12 yards (11 meters).
Everton went 3-0 up in the 37th minute when Newcastle defender Fabricio Coloccini and Krul failed to deal with a long clearance by Everton keeper Tim Howard, allowing Lukaku to put the ball into an empty net.
Lukaku had the ball in the goal again before half time, though the effort was disallowed because of offside.
Yoan Gouffran struck a post for Newcastle in the second minute of the second half and Leon Osman almost got a goal at the other end less than a minute later.
Newcastle coach Alan Pardew brought on Cabaye for the start of the second half and his dipping, out-swerving shot from about 20 yards flew past Howard and into the net six minutes after the interval.
Neither team could get another goal until the 89th minute, when Remy scored from short range. The French striker came close to another goal in time added on at the end of the game with a shot that rose over Howard’s crossbar.