Ronald Koeman has lauded Oumar Niasse's "incredible" performance after the former Everton outcast came off the bench to secure a dramatic 2-1 victory over Bournemouth.
Josh King's 49th-minute strike looked set to condemn Everton to a fourth straight Premier League defeat, with the pressure mounting on Koeman.
However, Niasse - who the Dutchman cast aside after just one pre-season match last term - salvaged the points with a late double to lift Everton out of the bottom three.
And Koeman, whose side were below-par for much of Saturday's home encounter, was quick to acknowledge the importance of Niasse's display.
"We didn't create a lot - maybe two penalty situations - it wasn't enough," he said. "But we did the best we could at the time, changed the system, and Oumar was incredible.
"He has not surprised me. Last season was a totally different situation as we had Romelu Lukaku. The boy has those kind of qualities that we need when we are struggling.
"For me, for the players, for everybody the win was important. Everyone knows the situation of managers.
"If you win you are sure about your job. If you lose you are not sure about your job - this is ridiculous. But this was a must-win."
Niasse's goals are his first for Everton in the top flight and came hot on the back of his maiden goal for the club in the EFL Cup victory over Sunderland in midweek.
The Senegal striker - a £13million arrival in 2016 under Roberto Martinez - was loaned out to Hull City last term and looked set to join Crystal Palace late in the transfer window.
His move to the capital broke down, however, and the 27-year-old is determined to make the most of his second chance at Everton.
"I always keep fighting - it was a difficult time for me but I always try my best," Niasse said.
"I didn't sign for another team. I signed for Everton. So even if I don't have the chance from the beginning, now I have to take it with both of my hands and I'm thankful for that."
Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe, meanwhile, was left to rue his side's failure to build on their lead, Jermain Defoe having squandered a gilt-edged opportunity shortly after King's opener.
"I thought we were the dominant team," Howe told BBC Sport.
"It is frustrating from our perspective to come here and put that kind of performance in and not get anything. We had chances to kill the game but at 1-0 they always have a chance."
|Lovren: This Croatia team are better than 1998 heroes|
|Internationals Musa, Okobo selected in NBA Draft|
|Modric is the world´s best number 10 – Arbeloa|
|Kurz stay crucial to Jakobsen´s Adelaide move|
|Nuggets end Porter´s slide at number 14|
|Argentina were crying like girls – Vrsaljko|
|Cavaliers select Sexton with number eight overall pick|
|Argentina must ´pray´ results go their way, says Mascherano|
|Grizzlies select Jackson with number four pick|
|Hawks select Doncic with third pick, trade him to Mavericks|
|Kings take Bagley with number two pick|
|Suns select Ayton number one overall in NBA Draft|
|Argentina concerns grow as Dalic vows to rest players against Iceland|
|Messi could retire after World Cup, says Zabaleta|
|Spieth, McIlroy off to hot starts at Travelers Championship|
|Let Sampaoli say what he wants - Aguero angry at Argentina loss|
|Perisic: Messi is the best, but Argentina do not play as a team|
|Dominant England are ´spoiled´ by options, says Morgan|
|Argentina squad ´clouds´ Messi´s brilliance, claims Sampaoli|
|Fagner to start for Brazil due to Danilo injury|
|Arzani lauds leader Jedinak and remains confident on last-16 chances|
|Croatia cut Messi off in Argentina thrashing - Modric|
|Pogba: Kante, Matuidi have 15 lungs|
|Julian Nagelsmann: the Bundesliga prodigy swapping Hoffenheim for RB Leipzig|
|England dominate in Durham to close in on series whitewash|
|´Fortunate´ Federer closes in on Halle title|
|Calamity Caballero and Sampaoli tinkerings leave Argentina a broken mess|
|Wimbledon champion Muguruza confident despite Birmingham defeat|
|Argentina 0 Croatia 3: Caballero drops clanger as Messi´s men are stunned|
|Funes Mori departs Everton to join Villarreal|
|Djokovic beats Dimitrov as Kyrgios lays down a marker|
|Relegated Verona appoint World Cup winner Grosso|
|Trotz named Islanders´ new coach|
|Matic and Serbia ready for ´hellish´ Switzerland clash|
|Fleetwood flounders as Gros takes Pulheim lead|
|No attacks on Neymar, pledges Costa Rica boss Ramirez|
|Giroud return brings structure to France, but again they disappoint|
|Brighton sign Sunderland goalkeeper Steele|
|Schmeichel and Eriksen blast ´exceptionally harsh´ VAR penalty|
|Nigeria´s young World Cup squad learning on the job - Rohr|
|Moody: England players need protection|
|France 1 Peru 0: Mbappe books last-16 spot with record goal|
|I don´t need anyone to hold my hand - Verstappen|
|Captaincy comes back around to Silva as 2014 pain fades|
|We don´t want to be losers - Petkovic|
|Alba not interested in Barcelona exit as Tottenham rumours swirl|
|BREAKING NEWS: Nagelsmann to take RB Leipzig role in 2019|
|Messi cannot be compared to Maradona, claims Argentina World Cup winner Kempes|
|Mbappe sets France record with maiden World Cup strike|
|Federer comes through tough Halle test|
|Nagelsmann to leave Hoffenheim amid RB Leipzig rumours|
|Gerrard brings former Liverpool team-mate Flanagan to Rangers|
|Cipriani to be ´the calmest guy in the room´ on England return|
|C´est magnifique! Lloris earns 100th France cap|
|Belgium v Tunisia: Hazard hoping for World Cup lift off|
|WATCH: Manchester United ditch piano to welcome Fred the red|
|Hamann springs to defence of Ozil|
|Alonso non-committal on future after Le Mans triumph|
|McInally returns to Scotland starting line-up|
|Giroud & Matuidi start as Deschamps drops Dembele for Peru|
|Torreira focused on Uruguay amid Arsenal links|
|NBA Mock Draft 2018: Deandre Ayton leads intriguing first round|
|Tite will not take away Neymar´s ´genius´|
|Australia show promise but calls for Cahill ignored amid lack of cutting edge|
|Manchester United means greatness - Fred aiming for titles following Old Trafford switch|
|Denmark 1 Australia 1: Jedinak strikes back after Eriksen rocket|
|Neymar not being put at risk by Brazil, says Tite|
|Juventus complete signing of free agent Emre Can|
|Fred completes Manchester United switch|
|Dembele will not join a Spurs rival|