The Argentine international carried over his fine pre-season form onto the Premier League stage, glancing home from Kyle Walker’s cross just prior to the hour mark to cancel out Ross Barkley’s somewhat fortuitous opener for the Toffees.
His free-kick curled all the way in after only five minutes, beating Hugo Lloris, who later went off with a hamstring injury.
We put the pressure on in the closing stages in search of a winner with substitute Vincent Janssen, making his debut for us along with Victor Wanyama, going close when his snap-shot was saved by Maarten Stekelenburg, while Lamela’s deflected effort glanced off the crossbar.
Ultimately, though, it ended 1-1.
Mauricio Pochettino handed a debut to Wanyama in midfield as the manager named a familiar looking side at Goodison Park. Jan Vertonghen made his return having missed the pre-season fixture schedule with an ankle injury sustained at the European Championships in France over the summer while Wanyama’s fellow new signing Janssen took up a position on the bench. Mousa Dembele was the only squad member unavailable for the trip to Merseyside as he continues to serve a suspension carried over from last season.
GOAL: EVERTON 1-0 SPURS – ROSS BARKLEY – 5mins
The first chance of the game brought the first goal. Wanyama fouled Kevin Mirallas not far from the corner of the box as the Toffees looked to counter, Barkley whipped in a delivery that looked like an intended cross but it evaded everyone and bounced into the top corner past Lloris. The goal gave the home side momentum as we struggled to get an early foothold in the game.
CHANCE: LLORIS TIPS OVER FROM A JAGIELKA HEADER – 15mins
The home side continued to look a threat from set-plays as another Barkley delivery caused problems with Phil Jagielka rising highest to head towards goal but he found Lloris at full stretch to tip it behind for a corner.
CHANCE: ERIKSEN WITH OUR FIRST EFFORT ON GOAL – 26mins
After a sluggish start, we started to find some rhythm as the half wore on and began to push the home side back towards their own goal. After some neat interchanges, Walker found an opening on the right-hand side and cut it back for Christian Eriksen who made good contact on a curling shot but fired straight at Stekelenburg in the Everton goal.
SAVE: SUBSTITUTE VORM KEEPS IT AT 1-0 – 45mins
We were dealt a blow with 10 minutes of the first half remaining as Lloris hobbled off injured, to be replaced by Michel Vorm. The Dutch keeper was straight into the action and made an excellent save with his feet to keep us in the game with the last action of the half after Gerard Deulofeu latched onto a stray pass from Danny Rose and raced through on goal.
GOAL: EVERTON 1-1 SPURS – ERIK LAMELA – 59mins
Mauricio shuffled his pack and changed the shape as Janssen (pictured, above) came on in place of Eric Dier and the Dutch forward made an immediate impact on his debut with a dangerous cross that Dele Alli blazed over. The chance sparked us into life, however, as the momentum swung in our favour and we were duly rewarded with a leveller. Toby Alderweireld linked up well with Walker on the right-hand side before the latter swung in a cross for Lamela, who got across his man and glanced a header into the bottom corner.
PUSHING FORWARD: LATE PRESSURE BUT EVERTON HANG ON – 84mins
We continued to pile on the pressure and almost got in front when a Rose volley sparked a huge scramble and Stekelenburg made a stunning save to deny Janssen from point-blank range. The attacks kept coming and Eriksen fizzed a free-kick narrowly over the bar shortly afterwards. Then we went closer still as Lamela burst into the box on the left side and drilled a shot towards goal that was deflected and touched onto the crossbar by Stekelenburg. Ultimately, we couldn’t make our pressure count.
MAURICIO POCHETTINO SAID
“The opening game is always difficult. In the second half we were much better and could have won it. Vincent Janssen is a different type of striker to Harry Kane and I was very happy with his performance. We need to assess Hugo tomorrow. It's impossible to say but it's a hamstring injury.”
ERIK LAMELA SAID
"I think in the second half we played a little bit better. We had to improve a lot from the first half to start to play better. The second half was different when Vincent came on, we played much better."
Everton: Stekelenburg, Holgate, Funes Mori, Jagielka (c), Baines, McCarthy, Barry (Cleverley 85), Gueye, Mirallas (Lennon 76), Barkley, Deulofeu (Kone 78). Substitutes (not used): Robles, Oviedo, Davies, Galloway.
Spurs: Lloris (c, Vorm 35); Walker, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Rose; Wanyama, Dier (Janssen 55); Lamela, Eriksen, Alli; Kane. Substitutes (not used): Carter-Vickers, Davies, Mason, Onomah, Winks.
Goals: Everton – Barkley 5; Spurs – Lamela 59.
Referee: Martin Atkinson.
We begin life at White Hart Lane this season next Saturday against Alan Pardew’s Crystal Palace. We took six points from the Eagles last season including our first home win of the season in September as Heung-Min Son scored his first Premier League goal in a 1-0 victory, but they’ll be looking for a response after an opening day home defeat at the hands of West Bromwich Albion.