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Everton: Paddy Boyland hails ‘big moment’ for Dwight McNeil

Everton: Paddy Boyland hails ‘big moment’ for Dwight McNeil -Everton News

The Athletic’s Everton correspondent Paddy Boyland has hailed Dwight McNeil’s match-winning performance for the Toffees against Southampton in what could be a ‘big moment’ for him.

The Lowdown: Big win for Everton

Frank Lampard’s side returned to Premier League action on Saturday afternoon, making the trip to St Mary’s for what had the potential to be a tight encounter.

After falling behind early in the second half, Everton quickly turned the game on its head, with Conor Coady and McNeil scoring the goals for the visitors inside a two-minute period.

It was a huge three points for the Blues, with the winning goal a standout moment from a player who has made a slow start since joining in the summer.

The Latest: Boyland hails McNeil

Taking to Twitter after the match, Boyland was full of praise of McNeil, lauding what could be a game-changing day in the 22-year-old’s Everton career.

The journalist summarised:

“Win on road from 1-0 down another indicator this Everton side now made of sterner stuff. Plenty of work to do but all signs suggest heading in right direction again. Big moment for McNeil to net winner – great finish & reminder of his quality. Hopefully will kick on now.”

The Verdict: Time to kick on

This was a memorable afternoon for McNeil, who bagged his first Everton goal in style with a stunning finish, and his all-round performance was strong.

He won three ground duels, made two key passes and enjoyed an 83% pass completion rate, as per Sofascore.

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It’s fair to say that the former Burnley man hasn’t quite ripped it up at Goodison Park so far, ranking 11th for overall performance rating among Lampard’s squad according to WhoScored, but this was a significant step in the right direction, as he proved to be the match-winner at St Mary’s.

McNeil has plenty of Premier League nous already and at 22 he should only improve even further in the coming years – the big thing for him now is to consistently perform at this level and become an undisputed key player for Everton.

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