Brighton piled more pressure on Everton manager Rafael Benitez as the Seagulls climbed to eighth in the Premier League with victory in an entertaining match at Goodison Park.
Alexis Mac Allister scored a third-minute opener for the visitors following Neal Maupay’s cushioned header and Dan Burn headed in when unmarked at the back post to double the lead after 28 minutes.
The returning Dominic Calvert-Lewin, absent through injury since August, had the chance to respond from the penalty spot after referee John Brooks reviewed Enock Mwepu’s challenge on Anthony Gordon – but he fired his spot-kick over.
The half-time whistle was met by jeers from the home support but Gordon gave his side hope of a fightback with a deflected shot eight minutes after the restart.
Allan drew a superb save from Brighton goalkeeper Robert Sanchez as Everton chased an equaliser but Mac Allister’s excellent second put the away side back in control.
Gordon’s second with 14 minutes remaining made for a tense finish, but he was unable to complete his hat-trick with a late chance and Everton remain 15th with defeat.