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Why are there so many fireworks at Everton

Alejandro Garnacho’s emphatic overhead kick was not the only explosion that littered the skies at Goodison Park on Sunday afternoon.

The Manchester United winger silenced a furious Merseyside crowd with an astonishing opening goal after just three minutes but Everton’s home ground wasn’t quiet for long. A cacophony of fireworks filled the air, drowning out a set of supporters still collecting their collective jaws from the floor in light of Garnacho’s screamer.

Here’s why there were so many fireworks in Sunday’s game, which weren’t in celebration of United’s opener.

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag anticipated the seething atmosphere in his pre-match press conference. “I can see the opposition and I can see they are mad,” the Dutchman warned.

Everton‘s sporting director Kevin Thelwell captured the mood of the fanbase when he described the club’s ten-point deduction as “wholly disproportionate and unjust”. An independent panel had found the Toffees guilty of exceeding the allowed losses over a three-year period ending with the 2021/22 campaign. Robbed of ten points, Everton dropped from 14th to 19th in the Premier League table.

The club’s vocal supporters mobilised to raise £40,000 after the ruling was made on 17 November. The fan group ‘the 1878s’ orchestrated most of the demonstrations, explaining on X that “the money will not only go towards the atmosphere on Sunday but, a continued push at what is a critical time for Everton Football Club, during which we need to all be united as one and aligned”.

The flood of donations helped fund the plane that flew over Manchester City’s 1-1 draw with Liverpool on Saturday, decrying the Premier League as “corrupt”.

Supporters also distributed bright pink posters with the Premier League logo and that same word, corrupt. Fans raised them at the first whistle and in the tenth minute, briefly drowning out the fireworks with boos.

Thousands of bodies marched through the streets towards Goodison Park as the protest began several hours before the match. Fireworks were first lit more than an hour ahead of Sunday’s 4.30pm kick off but the skies were filled with a deafening series of bangs midway through the first half of the match.

This was just another stage of the multi-layered protest that is set to rage on while Everton appeal their severe punishment. The process is expected to be concluded by the end of the season.

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