LONDON: Guus Hiddink is having an impact. Chelsea’s determination in a 3-0 derby win at Crystal Palace indicated a significant improvement in spirit and morale. It’s all coming too late for them to reach the top four but they may test the contenders to claim their Premier title.
Significantly, Diego Costa’s goal was his third strike in two starts under the Dutchman. He also provided the assist for Oscar’s opening goal though the finest goal was the champions’ second, a swirling, angled right-foot drive from Willian.
This was Chelsea’s biggest league win for almost a year. Under Jose Mourinho they needed the six first matches of term to run up five points; Hiddink has needed only three.
Tottenham missed a chance to increase pressure on the top three when they drew 1-1 at Everton despite dominating the first half and seeing Harry Kane and Ben Davies denied by the posts.
Spurs conceded an early goal to old boy Aaron Lennon in one of Everton’s few attacks but levelled through a super strike from man of the match Dele Alli.
Everton stepped up the tempo in the second half and were ultimately worth a draw. Indeed, they might even have won but for two fine late saves by Tottenham keeper Hugo Lloris.