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Men's Football Lampard looks for another ‘massive effort’ after 9-man Everton lose

FRANK LAMPARD is looking for another “massive effort” from his Everton players on Thursday after defeat to Brentford on Saturday kept them in the relegation dogfight.

The Everton boss gave his players a day off today before preparing for Thursday night’s home game against Crystal Palace, which could have a big say on whether they stay in the Premier League.

Everton started well against Brentford, buoyed by another fizzing atmosphere at Goodison Park.

They dominated the opening 15 minutes and should have scored more than the one goal they managed — a Richarlison shot from an Anthony Gordon free kick that went in off Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s chest.

Richarlison and Gordon missed chances during this period, but when the Brazilian had his shirt pulled in the box by Kristoffer Ajer, it looked like Everton would get the opportunity to add to their lead.

No penalty was given. Instead, Brentford cleared the ball to Ivan Toney who managed to get behind Everton’s defence, only to be brought down by Jarrad Branthwaite when through on goal.

The 19-year-old defender was duly shown a red card, though replays showed Richarlison’s shirt had clearly been pulled, almost ripped off his chest, moments earlier. But this was ignored by the officials and the red card decision stood.

Brentford began to make their man advantage count and equalised when Yoane Wissa’s shot deflected in off Seamus Coleman. Everton did finally get a penalty, won and converted by Richarlison, but in the second half, Brentford were able to regroup and outplay their opponents.

The visitors handled the situation well, changing their formation a couple of times as they looked to make the most of their man advantage.

Bees boss Thomas Frank was constantly chatting to his assistant, Brian Riemer, and their attacking formation, with the outside centre-backs in a back three joining the midfield, helped them over the line.

Wissa headed at the near post from a Christian Eriksen corner for another equaliser before Rico Henry nodded home a Christian Norgaard cross to win the game.

Everton went down to nine men later in the game when substitute Salomon Rondon lunged in on Henry, rounding off a blue afternoon for the Blues. But their play in the opening period gives them hope they can win on Thursday, which would be enough to avoid relegation with a game to spare.

“The effort from the players was amazing,” said Lampard.

“It is hard for them to react quickly, but there is time for a day off tomorrow to come away from it because the effort was massive, and they will need another massive effort on Thursday.

“They are giving everything and have been for a long time, so I don’t think it will be hard for them to respond: it’s what they have done for the last period [of the season].”

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