Everton 3-6 Chelsea: Quickfire Diego Costa sparks goal rush as Blues maintain perfect start | By Nick Harris for The Mail on Sunday

Quick off the mark: Diego Costa (right) of Chelsea scores the opening goal inside 35 seconds

Quick off the mark: Diego Costa (right) of Chelsea scores the opening goal inside 35 seconds

Quick fire double: Branislav Ivanovic of Chelsea scores his sides second goal despite appeals

Quick fire double: Branislav Ivanovic of Chelsea scores his sides second goal despite appeals

Offside? Replays show Branislav Ivanovic was marginally offside for Chelsea's second goal

Offside? Replays show Branislav Ivanovic was marginally offside for Chelsea’s second goal

Super Kev: Kevin Mirallas of Everton celebrates pulling a goal back

Super Kev: Kevin Mirallas of Everton celebrates pulling a goal back

Denied: Chelsea's Diego Costa(left) is thwarted by Everton's goalkeeper Tim Howard

Denied: Chelsea’s Diego Costa(left) is thwarted by Everton’s goalkeeper Tim Howard

Tempers flare up: Everton's Tim Howard confronts Chelsea's Diego Costa (left) after Chelsea's third

Tempers flare up: Everton’s Tim Howard confronts Chelsea’s Diego Costa (left) after Chelsea’s third

Proving a point: Samuel Eto'o celebrates scoring on his Everton debut

Proving a point: Samuel Eto’o celebrates scoring on his Everton debut

Six of the best: Diego Costa of Chelsea celebrates scoring his team's sixth goal at Goodison Park

Six of the best: Diego Costa of Chelsea celebrates scoring his team’s sixth goal at Goodison Park

Lucky escape: Tim Howard should have seen red for denying Eden Hazard a goal-scoring opportunity

Lucky escape: Tim Howard should have seen red for denying Eden Hazard a goal-scoring opportunity

•Diego Costa put Chelsea ahead after just 35 seconds at Goodison Park

•Branislav Ivanovic doubled Chelsea’s lead after three minutes despite being offside

•Everton keeper Tim Howard fortunate to escape red card after he caught the ball outside the penalty area

•Kevin Mirallas gave Everton a lifeline with a stunning header just before half-time
 
•Seamus Coleman diverted ball into his own net after blistering run by Eden Hazard

•Everton pulled a goal back after Steven Naismith scored

•Nemanja Matic made it 4-2 before Samuel Eto’o and Ramires continued goal rush

•Costa capped victory with injury-time strike

Chelsea stormed to the top of the Premier League amid a blizzard of nine goals from eight separate scorers in a match bookended by two strikes from Diego Costa.

The Spaniard is proving lethal since his £32million move from Atletico Madrid and now has four goals in three league games. 

But it was an older Chelsea hand, Ramires, who pulled many of the strings in an ultimately impressive victory which keeps Everton waiting for their first win this season. 

Everton manager Roberto Martinez made just one change from the starting XI who let slip a 2-0 lead against Arsenal at home last week, Aiden McGeady replacing the injured Steven Pienaar. Two recent former Chelsea employees were involved, with £28million Romelu Lukaku starting up front and Samuel Eto’o on the bench having joined on a free transfer last week.  

Jose Mourinho has seen four strikers leave Stamford Bridge this summer, selling Lukaku to Everton and Demba Ba to Besiktas, not offering Eto’o a further deal and loaning Fernando Torres — the unhappy Spaniard with that £50m millstone around his neck — to Milan for two years.

Mourinho made two changes from the side who beat Leicester 2-0, bringing in Ramires and Willian for Andre Schurrle, who is recovering from injury, and Oscar, who was injured in training on Friday.

Ramires’ impact was immediate, starting the move that ended with the Chelsea a goal up within 35 seconds. He passed to Willian, who found Cesc Fabregas, who again showed the vision and execution that are likely to make him a player of the season contender as he bisected Everton’s defence with a through ball to Diego Costa.

The 25-year-old striker made a brilliantly timed diagonal run behind Syvlain Distin to collect the ball, take one touch and slam it through Tim Howard’s legs.

Everton were rocked and Chelsea took quick advantage, with Costa and Ramires both instrumental again. Costa on the left slotted right to Ramires in the D, from where he slid a pass to Branislav Ivanovic, who fired right-footed across Howard and into the left-hand side of the goal. Replays showed Ivanovic to have been marginally offside as the final ball was played but the officials saw nothing wrong and the visitors were two up in three minutes. 

Referee Jonathan Moss did Everton a slight favour five minutes later when Howard ran out to catch a ball forward to Ramires, and caught it while appearing to be marginally outside his area. Instead of a handball, Moss allowed play to continue. 

Everton first had the ball in the net in the 16th minute, Sylvain Distin bundling over the line after being hit by a rebound off the bar from Lukaku header. But Distin was deemed offside and it didn’t count.

Steven Naismith shot wide a minute later and with Everton applying pressure throughout the first half, they were eventually rewarded just before the break. McGeady broke from midfield and laid off to Seamus Coleman, who crossed perfectly for Kevin Mirallas to send a powerful header beyond Thibaut Courtois.

Everton started the second half brightly, Lukaku shooting over and Distin threatening with a header. 

It took seven minutes for Chelsea to settle after the break and then threaten again, Ramires feeding Costa, who ran on goal alone. Howard came forward to close down his options and Costa unleashed a shot which the American managed to toe wide — just. Costa’s next shot shortly afterwards was straight at Howard.

At the other end, Naismith had an effort blocked by John Terry, then Costa was booked for an altercation with Coleman before resuming his role as a nuisance, collecting from Fabregas and distributing to Ivanovic, who shot wide.

Chelsea extended their lead when Eden Hazard progressed to the left side of the six-yard box and slid in a ball that took a deflection off Coleman for an own goal, sparking an altercation that saw Howard booked. But Everton cut the deficit within two minutes, McGeady releasing Naismith to make the score 3-2. 

Ramires played the provider role again in the 74th minute for Nemanja Matic, who smashed a left-foot shot in off the right-hand post to restore the cushion. Eto’o, just on as a substitute for McGeady, pulled back another goal for Everton two minutes later, but Ramires made it 5-3 with a neat finish over Howard after a one-two with Matic.

Costa finished things off in the last minute, rounding Howard and scoring left-footed following a misplaced backheel by substitute Muhamed Besic.

Menzi Kulati.

#BringBackOurGirls

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