American Exports: Another shutout for Everton's Tim Howard; Clint Dempsey stars
AMSTERDAM – Several Americans stationed in England crossed the chalk lines on Saturday, with Tim Howard ringing up his Premier League-leading 10th shutout of the season in Everton's 2-0 home victory over Norwich City.
The US star notched three saves to post his first win over the Canaries since his Manchester United days. Howard was at his best to deny Ricky van Wolfswinkel mere moments after Gareth Barry opened the scoring on 23 minutes. The result tentatively lifted the victors into fourth place.
Around the EPL, Jozy Altidore played a part in each of Sunderland's two insurance goals as the visitors climbed out of the league basement with a 4-1 rout of Clint Dempsey's Fulham.
Just after entering the match in the 69th minute, the No. 17 shirt executed an artful give-and-go with Ki Sung-Yueng to spring a rush that ended with Adam Johnson's second goal of the day. Then, shortly after the end of Dempsey's decent 79-minute shift, Altidore made the most of a clumsy area challenge by Philippe Senderos to win the penalty kick for Johnson's hat trick.
The Black Cats won their third straight game across all competitions and extended their road unbeaten streak in league play to five in pushing Crystal Palace to the table bottom on goal differential. Meanwhile, 16th place Fulham remained one point above the danger zone with the worst goal differential in England's top flight .
Down one level in the Championship, Daniel Williams pitched in with a strong midfield outing as Reading topped hosts Watford 1-0. The seventh place Royals halted a five-match win drought.
Tim Ream was at left back again as Bolton rallied for a 1-1 home share with Nottingham Forest. Other than one defensive hiccup that led to a shot at goal, the St. Louis native offered strong two-way play as Wanderers moved seven points clear of the drop zone.
Huddersfield Town youngster Duane Holmes come on in the 56th minute as the hosts edged a 1-0 victory over visiting Millwall. The Terriers won consecutive games at home for the first time since August to reach 12th place.
Will Packwood was an unused sub in Birmingham City's 1-0 loss at Brighton & Hove Albion. The 17th place Brums lost for the first time in seven road games.
Finally, Brek Shea and Barnsley saw their match at Charlton postponed due to poor pitch conditions.