Anyone worried that England’s high-octane Premier League might struggle to wake up after a six-week World Cup hibernation need not have been concerned.
Nor was there any Christmas hangover as the league resumed with goals, red cards and late Boxing Day drama on Monday.
That was especially so at Goodison Park where Julen Lopetegui’s first league match as manager of Wolverhampton Wanderers ended in wild celebrations as Rayan Ait-Nouri scored a 94th-minute breakaway goal to beat Everton 2-1.
The substitute’s strike competed a comeback win that lifted Wolves off the bottom of the table where they were replaced by a Southampton side beaten 3-1 at home by Brighton.
Newcastle United also won well away, 3-0 at Leicester, to go second in the table.
Fulham matched that scoreline at Selhurst Park where Crystal Palace were reduced to nine.
At Brentford Harry Kane scored as Tottenham came back from 2-0 down to draw.
Wolves win took them within a point of Everton either side of the relegation cut-off zone. The Toffees, buoyed by their successful tour of Australia during the break, took an early lead through Jerry Mina.
But Daniel Podence levelled from a clever free-kick before Ait-Nouri’s inflicted theri sixth defeat in eight league games.
Brighton goals by Adam Lallana and Solly March sandwiched by an own goal from Romain Perraud left Saints 3-0 down at St Mary’s before James Ward-Prowse scored a late consolation, converting a penalty at the second attempt.
Newcastle were two up in seven minutes at Leicester through Chris Wood’s penalty and Miguel Almiron. Joelinton added a third just after the half-hour.
Victory moved Newcastle above Manchester City, who visit Leeds on Wednesday.
Crystal Palace defenders Tyrick Mitchell and James Tomkins were sent off either side of Bobby Decordova-Reid’s 31st-minute goal for Fulham.
Tim Ream and Alexsander Mitrovic added further goals. It was Fulham’s second Premier League London derby win in 29 attempts.
At Brentford Ivan Toney, who was omitted from Gareth Southgate’s World Cup squad, then charged with a raft of betting violations that could lead to a long ban, scored along with Vitaly Janelt.
Kane, whose missed penalty led to England’s quarter-final exit, began Spurs’ now customary fightback after the seventh match in successive in which they have gone behind.
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg then grabbed an equaliser.
“We showed character, but my question is why we have to go down so many times,” said Spurs’ boss Antonio Conte.