By , Jerry Trecker
Published September 25, 2015
Steven Nasimith scored twice in a five-minute spell of scintillating early pressure, then completed his hat trick inside the final 10 minutes as Everton ratcheted up the pressure on floundering Chelsea with a 3-1 victory Saturday that kept Jose Mourinho's defending Premier League champions deep in the lower regions of the table with just four points from five matches.
Nemanja Matic pulled one back for Chelsea late in the first half, but Mourinho's men could not conceal their defensive issues nor prevent a second straight Barclays League defeat. It was the first time since 2006, when Mourinho's team had already clinched the title, that Chelsea had suffered successive league reversals.
For Roberto Martinez' Everton it was both a sign of a reviving attack and the presence of some resilience that may have been missing a year ago when they lost 19 points from leading positions in league play. This time there was no collapse after Chelsea managed to get some footing in the match. Instead they kept things tight as they increased their own Premier League tally to eight points from the opening five matches.
Naismith started the match on the bench, but got the immediate call after Muhamed Besic went down with an apparent hamstring problem after winning a corner in a clash with Kurt Zouma. It proved to be the most fortuitous of enforced changes for Martinez.
Naismith opened his account just 10 minutes after coming on, added a second in the 22nd minute, then killed off the match in the 82nd. He thus became the first player to record a Premier League hat trick against a Mourinho-coached team.
A precise 1-2 exchange with Brendan Galloway let Naismith complete his run to the far post to head home the returning cross for goal number one. Gareth Barry had begun things by finding Naismith in space in the inside left channel while Galloway's cross was well beyond Asmir Begovic's reach and the resulting header was powerful and true.
Begovic then produced two top class saves in the next three minutes to contain Everton's early onslaught, First he denied Arouna Kone's header to a cross from Seamus Coleman, then he reacted smartly to palm away a James McCarthy drive.
But he could nothing to stop Naismith's next assault in the 22nd minute, the Scottish international again surging forward into that inside left space, before ripping a drive to the far right corner. The Chelsea defenders were guilty of allowing Naismith far too much space to operate and line up his dhot.
There was little to foreshadow any Chelsea comeback in the opening half hour but the champions got the lifeline they sought in the 36th minute when Everton made the same mistake of dropping away from an attacking runner.
Matic took full advantage when he came down the inside right, saw that Ross Barkley would not be able to hinder his shot and let fly from at least 25 yards. It was a terrific strike to the far top left corner that gave Tim Howard no chance and signalled a fight back from the defending champions.
The Blues might well have managed an equalizer before the break as they used the Matic goal as inspiration, but a plenthora of corners did not bring them the needed second goal and proved to be their best spell of consistent attacking pressure.
When Chelsea did attack with numbers after the restart, the Everton defenders were strong and precise. Phil Jagielka made a crucial 70th minute tackle on Diego Costa which snuffed out Chelsea's best look in the second half, then Naismith took care of any late worries for the Goodison Park faithful. This time, the Scot broke clean on the right, getting to Barkley's through ball, before putting the shot under Begovic from a tight angle to complete his hat trick.