I have to laugh when I read the social media updates from the majority of all Evertonians recently, If we actually look at the situation logically I’m pretty sure all this panic is unnecessary. Our opening fixture against Wolves was always going to be a tough game, Wolves like many promoted teams before them lifted exponentially for their first game back in the big time. Let’s not forget that Wolves might have the best transfer negotiation team in living memory and have put together an amazing line up who play attacking football and are coming up as record Championship winners. Everton took the lead, had their captain Jagielka sent off after 40 minutes and took the lead again in the second half to eventually be pegged back through a goal from a set piece. Richarlison looked fantastic and for the first time in years the toffee’s looked able to play with some kind of plan and attacking flare.
Everton’s next game was at home to Southampton and sealed Marco Silva’s first victory for his team at Goodison Park, this was against a team whose main intention from the day was to full on kick lumps out of the blues picking up 5 yellow cards which could be argued deserved a lot more. Let’s not forget that at this point of the season Everton only had Richarlison in the team out of the extremely active transfer window, still issues with defending set pieces but miles better than almost all the pathetic efforts from the season previous.
Bournemouth away has always been a tricky fixture for Everton, our best player at the time (on form) Richarlison managed to get himself sent off after just 41 minutes for a questionable red card. Seeing Michael Keane score a header to put us two goals up was thrilling, unfortunately he got badly injured and was eventually taken off, and we conceded two goals to come away with a draw after more dramas from set pieces. Marco Silva didn’t have the most options to choose from off the bench and it could be argued that he might have been better served not bringing new signing Bernard off the bench for his first game but that’s his decision to get wrong. For a negative mind this was three points thrown away and we should have been able to see that game out which is a completely valid argument. I’m a little more positive but did feel at the time that Coleman played one of his worst games in a blue shirt and I still felt that we looked dangerous going forward, if we didn’t get the red card them I’m sure we would have won the game.
Playing against Huddersfield at home was proof that we completely missed Richarlison and in my opinion Marco Silva got it horribly wrong tactically for playing Dominic Calvert-Lewin on the left wing, even if he did manage to score. Everton struggled to breakdown a team who were completely happy to waste time and play with huge amounts of negativity. This is something we as a team need to get better at and again we conceded from yet another set piece. It was great to see Lookman get on the park but it would have been better to see him start the game on the left. Overall at this stage of the season I’m was not too worried, the team has a lot of players to come back in to the side and just like everybody kept saying in the summer we’ll all need to be patient here and give this new project time.
West Ham at home was the only really poor performance in my opinion, we got beaten by a team who simply wanted it more, a team who were desperate for a win and again Everton refusal to play a winger on the left came back to bite them pretty badly, Lookman or Bernard should have started on the left but it wasn’t to be. If Everton are to stick to their philosophy then we need more pace out wide to get beyond the central striker. It was great to see Kenny get a start and long may that continue even when Coleman comes back, I feel Kenny needs a run in the team as Coleman has been poor for us this year. I feel the genuine competition given by playing Kenny would get the best out of Coleman and I also don’t think we should underestimate just how hard his injury would have affected his health and confidence in general.
On the weekend I felt that we looked excellent, it was so refreshing to see an Everton team go after a side like Arsenal right from the get go. Unlike previous attempts I felt that Everton were really unlucky not to go in at half time in front. Richarlison makes such a difference to the way we play and I still for the life of me can’t understand why we don’t give Lookman a chance if Richarlison is unable to play. Playing Calvert-Lewin upfront makes so much sense to me especially when Tosun has been struggling so much with confidence recently. Playing Calvert Lewin anywhere other than the traditional number 9 role makes no sense to me let’s rotate him and Cenk from now until the transfer window to see who can step up to nail the striker position down. I’m not a fan of putting Richarlison down the middle just yet well not until we figure out a replacement winger to play out on the left with any sort of joy.
I’m surprised that Evertonians are not being more patient with this team, we have lots of quality young players in and around the team along with some seriously good new signings to come in and improve our fortunes. I’ve seen a lot made of the lack of a number 8 in our squad, personally I feel we have one in Gylfi and when Bernard is fit I’d envision this being the most logical solution by pushing Bernard in to the number 10 role. I’m excited to see Mina and Gomes get in to the squad but would rather wait until they are fit enough to play rather than rush these players in. I’ve not changed my mind of Morgan Schneiderlin, I don’t think he’s good enough and will need a lot more from him to convince me that he’s changed his completely woeful attitude from last season, I don’t think he’s played particularly well so far. I’d prefer Baningime or Dowell get given a chance in front of Schneiderlin and will not change my mind of this one anytime soon. I’m a fan of Tom Davies, I also think he’s the next Ross Barkley when it comes to criticism – let the guy make the odd mistake along the way, give the player time in a settled team, let’s not forget the age on the guy. I’d like us to play the following team when everybody is fit:
I personally like Tosun and feel he’s not as effective when Richarlison is out of the team, Tosun starting against Fulham with Calvert-Lewin coming on for him after an hour would not be such a bad shout. I like Tosun, he’s a great attitude and I’m convinced that he’ll come good from playing in an in form team. Let’s not get totally pissed off at every given opportunity or any bump in the road, we’ll have times when we lose and we’ll have games when we’re not at 100%, but jeez it’s a long hard season and I’m very confident that with Silva and Brands we’ll improve with every window. Let’s stick to the philosophy and give youth a chance, I’m not saying that this time next month we’ll be defending corners and scoring goals like they’re going out of fashion but it will take time before we’re all happy!