MANCHESTER – The People's Club welcomed back its fans and Chelsea felt the full force.
With 2,000 supporters allowed back into Goodison Park after nine months, Everton won 1-0 on Saturday to end Chelsea's 17-match unbeaten run in all competitions.
It means third-place Chelsea can be overtaken — if Leicester beats Brighton on Sunday — and front-runners Tottenham and Liverpool can pull further away at the top of the Premier League.
“I don’t think we were at our best,” Chelsea manager Frank Lampard said. “We have been on a really good run and we knew what was coming with Everton physically and we didn’t handle that well. We didn’t show enough to break them down.”
It was an uncharacteristic mistake by Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy —- bringing down Dominic Calvert-Lewin — that allowed Gylfi Sigurdsson to score a penalty in the 22nd minute and spark home celebrations as Everton rose to seventh.
“The impact was really strong — we were really pleased," Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti said. “It is really important to have the support. It’s a totally different environment, completely.”
And totally different about 30 miles (48 kilometers) away in Manchester, which remains in a higher level of coronavirus restrictions so no supporters were allowed into the city's derby match for the first time.
There was no atmosphere, no intensity and no goals as Manchester United and Manchester City drew 0-0 in the 183rd derby.