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Everton to face Lille, Wolfsburg and Krasnodar

by | 29/08/2014  Comments (113)  jump
Everton have been drawn into a fairly tough Group H of the Europa League where they are joined by Lille, Wolfsburg and FC Krasnodar.

The Blues will kick off their campaign at Goodison Park on 18 September against Wolfsburg before the trip to face Krasnodar on 2nd October.

Confirmed dates

18 Sep: Wolsfburg (h)
2 Oct: Krasnodar (a)
23 Oct: Lille (a)
27 Nov: Wolfsburg (a)
6 Nov: Lille (h)
11 Dec: Krasnodar (h)

In addition to the Ligue 1 side, the name of Bundesliga side Wolfsburg offers a challenging prospect, as will the long trip to Krasnodar near the Black Sea in Russia, if that is where the fixture ends up being played. There have been musings that the venue might be moved due to security concerns given Krasnodar's proximity to Crimea and the ongoing hostilities in eastern Ukraine.

The Blues were in pot 3 for the draw in Monaco based on their Uefa team co-efficient and were assigned Group H.

Full draw:

Group A: Villarreal, Borussia Moenchengladbach, Zurich, Limassol
Group B: FC Copenhagen, Club Brugge, Torino, HJK Helsinki
Group C: Tottenham, Besiktas, Partizan Belgrade, Asteras Tripolis
Group D: Salzburg, Celtic, Dinamo Zagreb, FC Astra
Group E: PSV, Panathinaikos, Estoril, Dynamo Moscow
Group F: Inter Milan, Dnipro, St Etienne, Qarabag
Group G: Sevilla, Standard Liege, Feyenoord, Rijeka
Group H: Lille, Wolfsburg, Everton, Krasnodar
Group I: Napoli, Sparta Prague, Young Boys, Slovan Bratislava
Group J: Dinamo Kiev, Steaua Bucharest, Rio Ave, Aalborg
Group K: Fiorentina, PAOK, Guingamp, Dinamo Minsk
Group L: Metalist Kharkiv, Trabsonspor, Legia Warsaw, Lokeren
 

Reader Comments (113)

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Paul Mackie
2 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:40:42
Happy with that, except for the trip to Russia.

Could have been better, could have been a LOT worse.

Simon Hermansen
3 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:40:31
Not quite group of death but could have been kinder, few good trips and big grounds (and allocations?) for those fancying an away day. Although Krasnodar are a bit of a mystery to me! Anyone know when the fixtures get arranged?

Every chance of qualifying though ... coyb!!
Tony Waring
4 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:41:37
Not disappointed about the draw. Krasnodar could be problematical............ especially if Russia is at war with the rest of Europe ! It could have been worse. I fail to see why some teams were placed in groups in a different order, namely after group D was drawn the next team was allocated to group H for example; maybe someone could explain.
Bill Griffiths
5 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:43:09
Would have preferred B or D, could have been worse though. Wolfsburg & Lille should be good games to watch though.
Jim Bennings
6 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:44:27
A trip to Russia? And a tough German side?

That could have been easier that though.

Chris Leyland
7 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:45:14
Lille will be a good trip but I wouldn't want to a business-person on the Eurostar that day.
Peter Bell
8 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:46:52
Tony, I think its to do with avoiding teams from your same country, so Everton could not have possibly been put in group C with Spurs
John Raftery
9 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:45:25
Not bad at all. One long trip but two relatively short ones. Lille holds 50,000 so tickets for that one should be readily available.
John Audsley
10 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:46:45
Joined the draw half way through but a really weird way of doing it. Happy enough with the group and it could have been a lot worse. Not sure about taking my lads to Russia... though Mrs A would be happy if I went and didn't come back
Craig Fletcher
11 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:47:26
Could be much worse. Just look at Spurs - they’ll have three long trips away to play in Greece, Turkey, and Serbia.

Krasnodar is the only game we have to go to the other side of Europe for.

Mark Pierpoint
12 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:50:24
Good trips for the fans. Lille a really good trip to a big ground and Wolfsburg a big ground to. Lets be honest though, football wise this is a tough group. Lille are a good pot one team, but Wolfsburg are one of the best in that second pot.
Andrew Ellams
13 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:52:29
Krasnodar is very close to Eastern Ukraine.
Nick Wall
14 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:52:10
Last season Lille were 3rd in Frnace, Wolfsburg 5th in Germany, and Krasnodar 5th in Russia. Good test, but if we play a reasonably strong team no reason why we shouldn't qualify. Some great awaydays there - bring them on !!
Lyndon Lloyd
15 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:53:31
I saw it mentioned on Twitter that Krasnodar's proximity to Crimea means there is a possibility we'd play in Moscow instead on security grounds.
Craig Fletcher
16 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:59:09
I saw that too Lyndon. Sensible idea given what’s going on in that corner of the world.
Eugene Ruane
17 Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:47:41
Chris - "Lille will be a good trip but I wouldn't want to a business-person on the Eurostar that day."

Agree, no doubt there will be a few Howard's way types heading to Lille thinking "Great, train on time, nice quiet trip, arrive relaxed, refreshed and ready to present a successful pitch for the new Higgins And Crint range of garden tools" only to find themselves subjected to....

"Eh mate...eh mate...eh mate...EH MATE!"

"YESSSSSSSSS!!!"

"D' you wanna bevvy lad"

"No. Thank. Y..."

(STOMP STOMP STOMP) "OH IT'S A GRAND OL' TEAM TO....." etc

Jim Potter
18 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:03:15
I think itÂ’s pretty tough - but certainly not insurmountable.

I blame the red balls.

Ian McDowell
19 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:03:47
Tough group. Lille are a decent side an will be a challenge whilst Wolfsburg will be a test. When do we find out the dates of when we play who?
Drew O'Neall
20 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:01:10
Pity, sounds nice:

Under the Keppen climate classification Krasnodar has a humid subtropical climate climate (Cfa).

Winters are cold and damp, with unstable snow cover. The average temperature in January, the area's coldest month, is 33 °F (1 °C). Weather conditions in winter vary greatly. Temperatures can exceed 68 °F (20 °C) for a few days, but temperatures below −4 °F (−20 °C) are not uncommon for Krasnodar as the city is not protected by mountains from cold waves. Summers are typically hot with a July average of 75.4 °F (24.1 °C).

The city receives 28.94 inches (735 mm) of precipitation annually, fairly spread throughout the year. Extreme storms are rare in the Krasnodar area. Extreme temperatures have ranged from −27.2 to 105.3 °F (−32.9 to 40.7 °C), recorded on January 11, 1940 and July 30, 2000, respectively.

Amit Vithlani
21 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:06:08
This is a good test. Lille are CL material, Wolfsburg have a decent team and anyone going to Russia will need to hold their nerve.

Home wins against Lille and Wolfsburg will provide a real injection of confidence. I hope to see a strong line-up against those two (and that means no Robles...)

Ro(u)bles might come handy in Russia. *Ahem* I will get my coat.

Simon Hermansen
22 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:08:38
I see our group's winning the 'toughest group vote' on the UEFA website!
Chris Wilson
23 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:04:24
OK, could somebody explain to me why we could not go into group D? Is it because Tottenham were in C, and that will create a "two English teams facing each other" senario? Sorry, I'm not sure of the Euro League format. I just got all excited to see us get drawn into what I thought was going to be Salzburg and Celtic, only to see us get moved into a pretty competitve group.
Andy Meighan
24 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:09:03
Two established European sides in Lille and Wolfsburg and a trip to the back of beyond to that household name Krasnador. We should have put ourselves in the draw as Everton of Liverpool – we might have come out with more favourable opposition.

Eugene (#16) a few HowardÂ’s Way types ... Hahahaha, quality But my god, you do show your age at times.

Peter Bell
25 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:13:44
Chris, I think it's to do with the groups being split into two halves. As Spurs were in first half of the draw, Everton had to go into the second half from Group G onwards.

Notice at the very beginning of the draw how Villarreal were the first team out and went into Group A. Seville came out next but went into Group G.

Peter Bell
26 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:17:02
Need the computer to be kind to us now. We are away to places like Man Utd, Tottenham and Sunderland on the Sunday after some of these Thursday night matches. Ideally we want to be drawn at home before these away games
Andrew Ellams
27 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:20:13
ItÂ’s to do with TV. (No surprise there eh?) The matches are split between 6:00pm and 8:00pm UK time kick offs, A-F kicking off together and then G-L and alternating the start times between them. So now ITV can show all 6 Everton games live.
Liam Reilly
28 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:20:12
There's tougher groups out there and if the club have any ambition towards winning this trophy then they need to be topping this group.
David Booth
29 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:23:06
When will the dates be confirmed?
Mark Frere
30 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:17:33
A tough group! Chances are, we will be playing plenty of our fringe players... just hope they're up to the task.
Tony J Williams
31 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:25:45
Let's fecking ave ittttttttt!!!!!!

We can get past the group stages, the other teams in or group will be shitting themselves when thinking about playing us.

Howard, Lukaku, Eto'o, Mirallas, Coleman, Baines.... come on the Blues

Patrick Murphy
32 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:25:07
Judging by Peter Bell's thoughts we can almost guarantee that the away ties will precede those games that Peter mentions.
Patrick Murphy
33 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:27:39
I don't think that Roberto will be playing his second string players in the early stages of the group at least - If we're in it we want to win it or at least not roll over otherwise what is the point of qualifying for it in the first place.
Geoffrey Caveney
34 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:21:51
Simon (21) it is the toughest group because Everton are in it!

It is a top group for star international goalies: our Howard, Switzerland's Benaglio for Wolfsburg, Nigeria's Enyeama for Lille.

Howard gets a rematch with Belgian goal scorer De Bruyne when we play Wolfsburg...unless Roberto sends Robles to The Wolves, literally.

And vs. Lille we get to take on RS loaner Origi. Bring it on!

Andrew Ellams
35 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:29:09
We have RS and Man Utd away on consecutive weekends with a Eurpean tie in between, what odds on that being the trip to Russia?
Phil Walling
36 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:24:56
I think we shall be able to determine how seriously Roberto is taking it when he names his goalkeeper. !
Ross Hutchinson
37 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:28:17
I think it's a very tough group. Hopefully we'll win our home games and pick up some points away as well. But I bet you that's what the other teams fans are saying too. Very tough but also good experience.
James Morgan
38 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:27:38
Lille and Wolfsburg are decent sides and the travel will make Krasnodar tough, but they should fear us! If any of those sides had Lukaku and Eto'o in their strike force! I would have my worries. And our secret weapon Naismith!
Clarence Yurcan
39 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:32:04
Not as tough a group as the media re making it out to be. Lille are no world-beaters; other than PSG, Ligue 1 is a second-tier league. Krasnodar will be a long trip, but Everton have a much better squad. Wolfsburg are good, but not certainly better than us. We avoided the real tough teams, Napoli, Inter, Sevilla, Villareal.
Joseph Hinchliff
40 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:36:32
Happy with that! After all, I'm sure the other 3 teams will be looking at Everton thinking how we were very close to Champions League qualification and trounced Manure and Spurs in one of the best leagues in the world.
Ryan Rosenberg
41 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:40:16
Very tough group, but I'm pleased. No point being in this competition and playing FC Mhredhgrui from Belarus.

Wolfsburg and Lille are cracking teams. Going to Krasnodar will also be tough.

I think due to the nature of draw, Roberto may change his initial strategy, which seemed like he would field young players in these matches. I wouldn't expect the likes of Browning/McAleny to start.

Mike Hughes
42 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:48:38
I don't know enough about the other teams to comment on them.

But the competition itself is arduous and, in my opinion, should have greater financial rewards and prestige for the effort of actually winning it. (Obviously market forces go some way in determining this).

It should naturally be the smaller brother of the Champions League - but not its infant brother which is how I think it is perceived. Winning the Europa League is no mean feat.

Dickie Langley
43 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:49:45
I spent 6 weeks working in Krasnodar back in August-September 2001. It's a nice place, if you like grey, concrete buildings. I stayed at the Hotel Platan, where the sheets didn't fit the bed and there was no menu in English. The other international hotel (can't remember the name) was apparently nicer, but prostitutes were told where the Westerners were staying and would knock on the hotel door. There was a single cafe/restaurant where the second language on the menu was English, the others were either Russian-only, or had German as the second language. And the flight to get there was from Moscow with Aeroflot - on a converted bomber (you could see the perspex underneath). Interesting times.
Peter Barnes
44 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:56:44
Eugene 17. Brilliant.
Mike Hughes
45 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:57:59
Dickie - that sounds a notch up on Ryan Air.
Stephen Brown
46 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:57:41
Dickie have you thought about getting a job for the Russian tourist board?!
Andrew Ellams
47 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:02:42
Krasnodar have played three two-legged ties so far in the competition, scored 20 goals and conceded 2. I canÂ’t say much about the Hungarian and Estonian teams that they have played but they did beat Real Sociedad last night
Si Cooper
48 Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:42:18
Chris (22) - it won't have just been about keeping English teams apart so maybe H was the next group where whoever was drawn out wouldn't have clashed with anyone from E, F and G (or just G factoring in Andrew's post at 26)?

Think it will a shame not to play at their ground. It seems relatively short for a Russian trip and the weather may be significantly better than Moscow. Likely to be much safer on the Russian side of East Ukraine than the Ukrainian one.

Jonathan McMahon
49 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:10:05
They will all be decent teams, it is just fantastic to have our name in the draw! COYB
Mike Knowsley
50 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:02:33
Hello everyone, I don't think any of the club's in pots 1 & 2 were relishing drawing Everton in their group. I believe the more savvy clubs were desperate to avoid Bobby's side, as there were a few sigh's of relief when we where drawn to Group H. Goes to show how far we come psychologically in just one year under Roberto.
Mike Allison
51 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:00:08
You can find out quite a lot about the other teams on www.transfermarkt.co.uk

Look them up.

Lille have Salomon Kalou and Liverpool's Divock Origi as well as the formerly very highly rated Simon Kjaer. Their keeper is the Nigeria World Cup keeper Enyeama, who is highly rated but seems a bit of a calamity from what I've seen. They've had two wins and a draw in the league so far and lost the Champions League play-off to FC Porto.

Wolfsburg have just signed Nicklas Bendtner but also have some very highly rated players, especially in attacking midfield with ex-Chelsea player Kevin de Bruyne, Aaron Hunt and Ivan Perisic (who I believe was one of the legions of players linked with us earlier in the summer). They also have Luiz Gustavo who played for Brazil in the World Cup and a left back in Ricardo Rodriguez who is very highly rated and rivals our own Leighton Baines in terms of goals and assists from left back. They've played one league game this season and lost 2-1 away at Bayern Munich.

The only Krasnodar player I've heard of is Marat Izmailov but if you go to transfermarkt and look them up you'll find most things you need to know. They're currently fourth in the table and unbeaten in their first five games.

Denis Richardson
52 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:09:49
That is a pretty tough draw. Wolfsburg are no mugs and Lille finished 3rd in the French league last season. Its going to be tough regardless, even if we make it out of the group stages there's the sides dropping out of the CL to come in February.

Still, we're in it and that's the main thing. Really hope we get the ruskies away early, so we don't have to play them in minus 10 degrees!

Erik Dols
53 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:15:57
Denis #52, you'll be surprised. Krasnodar lies in the far south of Russia and has a subtropic climate. It lies at about the same latitude as Italian cities like Turin. Temperatures during winter vary greatly, it is not uncommon to be 15 degrees above zero in December.
Brian Hennessy
54 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:18:57
Anyone else know if the twitter rumours that the Russian game could be played in Amsterdam has any truth?

If it is, it looks brilliant draw travelwise for the squad and fans.

Dan Brierley
55 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:22:56
Tough group, but none of those teams are going to be happy facing us either. Nothing to fear, let's go and give a good account of ourselves. Away days are here again....
Denis Richardson
56 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:23:51
Thanks Eric (53), did not know that. Although there are rumours that the game might be played in Moscow 'cos of ze war....

Peter Bell
57 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:34:52
18/9 Wolfsburg H
2/10 Krasnador A
23/10 Lille A
6/11 Lille H
27/11 Wolfsburg A
11/12 Kransado H

Just confirmed, bloody typical.

Patrick Murphy
59 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:42:57
That's a pretty tough run of fixtures at the end of September beginning of October. Wolfsburg (H) 18, Palace (H) 21, Swansea (A) 24, Liverpool (A) 27. Krasnador (A) 2/10 and Man U (A) 5/10

I would imagine that the League cup will see very inexperienced eleven getting an outing.

Denis Richardson
60 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:45:46
Thanks Peter - thats the 27th Nov booked for me then - hopefully the weather won't be shite!

2/10 Krasnador A followed by Man Utd away on 5th Oct
23/10 Lille A followed by Burnley away on 26th Oct
27/11 Wolfsburg A followed by Spurs away on 30th Oct

So every single away game in the EL is followed by an away game in the league. What are the odds on that happening??

At least Burnley and Man Utd are not too far away to travel although the Russia trip is far......

Mark McGuinness
61 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:45:11
That's 6 games from September 18th to October 5 including away to Swansea in the League Cuo, a trip to Manure and the Rs, Wolfsburg at Goodison and a nice trip to Russia. That'll shape the season.
Mike Allison
62 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:46:30
18 September: Everton v Wolfsburg.
followed by 21st Sept: Everton v Crystal Palace.

2 October: Krasnodar v Everton.
followed by Sun 5th Oct: Man United v Everton

23 October: Lille v Everton.
followed by Sun 26th Oct: Burnley v Everton

6 November: Everton v Lille
followed by Sun 9th Nov: Sunderland v Everton

27 November: Wolfsburg v Everton.
followed by Sun 30th Nov: Tottenham v Everton (they will have played home vs Partizan Belgrade)

11 December: Everton v Krasnodar
followed by Sun 14th Dec: Everton v QPR

So not great then, all three away fixtures are followed by away Premier League games including Tottenham and Man United, and only twice are we at home after a Thursday game at all.

Still, not much point whingeing about details like that anyway, but this campaign will need some careful squad management and some big decisions from Roberto.

Tony Pickering
63 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:47:57
Maybe not great for league form, but to start under the lights v Wolfsburg can't be bad for adrenaline - and if things are tight towards the end of the group stages, finishing home to Kransado could well be a good thing too.
Kevin Tully
64 Posted 29/08/2014 at 14:50:44
Really looking forward to this competition. I am a firm believer that European football makes for better players in the long run. Our young players will benefit massively from these type of games. I also imagine European football helped Mr. Eto'o make his decision to come to Goodison Park.

Message to Roberto ; Roy Hodgson and Steve McClaren took Fulham & Middlesborough to the final of this competition. We can win this!

Harold Matthews
65 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:02:46
My God, that's a real tough stint.
James Newcombe
66 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:11:19
Not scared of these, bring 'em on!
David Chait
67 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:12:17
Group G looks pretty tough.. crickey...
Sam Hoare
68 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:11:14
Gonna be alot of fixture congestion!

What do we reckon our second string team is currently (assuming the first XI that started vs Arsenal)? Something like:

Robles
Browning Stones Alcaraz Garbutt
Gibson Besic
Atsu Osman Mcgeady
Etoo

With maybe the likes of Oviedo and Kone to feature? And some of the kids who are not on loan to come in.

Will be interesting to see what Roberto prioritises.

Erik Dols
69 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:16:02
Nice draw for me personally BTW. I live just a two hours drive away from Lille. What time will the match on the 23rd begin? Do you guys reckon I have any chance of getting in the away end?

Ken Buckley
70 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:05:08
Amsterdam would be great place for Russian game. You have to have visa to enter Russia at £70. So expensive trip before you even start out.
Mike Hughes
71 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:29:48
Sam #68 - I really hope we can get an experienced / good keeper before Monday night. And, hopefully, Derek Mountfield Mk II.
Denis Richardson
72 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:21:16
Sam 68, personally I think this comp is just as important as the league given what the winner gets. I really hope we play our strongest side in the EL at the beginning to get points on the board asap.

We need to take this comp seriously and not simply an opportunity to blood younger players. If we had a piss easy group then that would be fine but Wolfsburg at home first game needs to be 3 points and we probably need to beat the russians home and away to stand a chance of winning the group - so need to look to get 6 points from the first two EL games to set the tone. I.e. no messing about with the team, play a strong side.

7 games between 13th Sept to 5th Oct but we only have one game between now and then so there should not be the need for massive rotation (also the 4th game in the sequence is the LC). 7 games in 3 weeks is not that much of a load, its two games a week at the end of the day and we're at the start of the season. We'll probably rest a couple of players away to Swansea in the LC as we have the rs away after that.

On the Eurpean road again and 6 games guaranteed - can't ask for much more than that, am really looking forward to it.

Chris Gould
73 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:35:59
I see sky sports have gone for a headline about Spurs' group involving Besiktas. No mention of Everton. Pisses me off. Though I guess we should be used to it.
Andy Kay
74 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:37:26
Did you see Lille, Wolfsburg and Krasnodar got a tough draw in the Europa League? TheÂ’ve got EVERTON in their group!
Gavin Johnson
75 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:17:52
Could have been worse but could have been a lot better IMO, would have prefered group B, D, J or L

Lille and Wolfsburg are two of the better teams in their respective leagues and Krasnoder are an unknown quantity.

The way we played against european competition in pre-season is a worry, but I'll be optimistic and say that these games weren't really competitive and were just fitness building.

Brent Stephens
76 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:40:04
Ken #70 - Yes, Russian visa is not cheap. And the worst thing is the time it takes to fill out the application form - surprised they didn't ask for my dog's name.
Dick Brady
77 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:54:46
We got Swansea away in the League Cup so its no surprise Everton have a difficult group in this competition too.

I just hope Roberto names his strongest team and actually tries to win this competition. I actually think the Europa Cup is Everton's best chance of silverware this season.

Mike Keating
78 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:56:25
Here's the details
Good to KO at home against the toughest in the bunch and then finish at home to see it to bed
I hope

MATCHDAY ONE: Everton v Wolfsburg, Thursday 18 September, 8.05pm (UK)

MATCHDAY TWO: FC Krasnodar v Everton, Thursday 2 October, 5pm (UK)

MATCHDAY THREE: Lille v Everton, Thursday 23 October, 6pm (UK)

MATCHDAY FOUR: Everton v Lille, Thursday 6 November, 8.05pm (UK)

MATCHDAY FIVE: Wolfsburg v Everton, Thursday 27 November, 6pm (UK)

MATCHDAY SIX: Everton v FC Krasnodar, Thursday 11 December, 8.05pm (UK)

Jon Ferguson
79 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:55:23
It's a tough group but we should get through. Can't wait for European games at Goodison again. It's when the old lady is at hr finest.
Mike Keating
80 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:58:57
Hi Eric @ 69
How kind of you to offer us all a stay over on the 22nd!
What's your address?
Tony J Williams
81 Posted 29/08/2014 at 16:09:45
Amen Jon, my ears are still ringing from the roar when we played Villarreal all those years ago.
Drew Shortis
82 Posted 29/08/2014 at 16:38:17
Very pleased with this draw. Your always going to end up with one away trip into the depths of Russia, but the rest of the matches should be played in large capacity stadiums and should be very enjoyable viewing. None of these teams should be underestimated, but at the same time they beatable opposition, especially at home.

I think we can forget about blooding the youngsters unless we have qualified with a game or two to spare. Samuel Eto's' experience could be our secret weapon. I agree with the post that said we are the team the others will fear in this group! Bring it on!!

Chris Wilson
83 Posted 29/08/2014 at 17:16:09
I appreciate it Peter 25 and Si 48. It was 4:00 in the morning for me, and I was too busy staring at the young lady in the white dress wondering if there has ever been a tighter dress on a TV presenter (including Sofia Vergara), rather than listen to them try to explain the format rules. Ha!
Tim Greeley
84 Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:39:02
Wolfsburg wanted Lukaku, now they can get him... In their faces! I think we were cream of the crop in the "3rd pot" so you know these other teams are not happy to see Everton.

WonÂ’t be easy but we should be able to get through.

Raymond Fox
85 Posted 29/08/2014 at 17:10:41
Impossible to judge how the Europa will go, what team will Roberto select, will the other teams in the group field their strongest teams?
Whatever happens, the comp. is bound to cause plenty of controversy on here!

I think Martinez has to prioritise the Prem. then the Europa followed by the FA Cup, lastly the League cup.
Some very tricky decisions to be made!

Tony Abrahams
86 Posted 29/08/2014 at 17:24:24
Wondering if we can play that Krasnodar away twice if itÂ’s going to be Moscow and Amsterdam!
Christopher Wallace
87 Posted 29/08/2014 at 17:34:20
Tough group but a good draw, if ya get what I mean?!

Wolfsburg are an open team and there for the taking, despite the addition of Bendtner instead of Lukaku.

Lille are the opposite but we should out-match them man for man, let alone being the superior team.

Russians are a tough one outta pot 4 but we are faves for group winners and rightly so.

Looking forward to this. Pissed off as usual at this time of year about the pointless internationals coming up.

COYB

Peter Gorman
88 Posted 29/08/2014 at 17:57:44
All pretty decent teams and theyÂ’ll surely be lapping up the prospect of facing our lamentable defence.

I was hoping for something kinder so we could blood a few kiddies but we do seem to step up against better teams in Europe so letÂ’s have it.

Jon Ferguson
90 Posted 29/08/2014 at 17:45:24
Tony - 81 - I reckon on the noise-o-meter the Fiorentina game was louder than Villarreal game although the latter was arguably the bigger occasion. I seem to remember it still being light when we played Villareal, the atmosphere is always more intense under floodlights.
John Daley
91 Posted 29/08/2014 at 18:16:29
Jesus Phil. You can't wait to sneak a sly Joel jab in. We all know Robles is overly punch-crazy but it's not like he nobbed your cat or anything.
Steve Brown
92 Posted 29/08/2014 at 18:24:23
John, I don't think Phil needs to be subtle about Robles, Alcaraz or Kone. Just needs to remind us to watch their performances since they joined Everton.
Drew Shortis
93 Posted 29/08/2014 at 18:34:29
When you consider Lille's top players are Salomon Kalou who was a bit part player at Chelsea and Divock Origi who has explosive pace but was not considered ready to play for Liverpool despite the loss of Suarez we should hope to get 4-6 points from the two games. You would hope for the same from Krasnodar. That would leave us needing a win or two draws against Wolfsburg if ten points is the benchmark.

WfL are a much more challenging opposition with the likes of Diego Benaglio, Naldo, Luiz Gustavo, Josuha Guilavogui, Junior Malanda, Ivan Perišić, Ivica Olić, Kevin De Bruyne and er Nicklas Bendtner. Getting a result against them will make or break our group stage. Hopefully the atmosphere at Goodison will give us the boost we need. Should be very exciting!

Harvey Miller
94 Posted 29/08/2014 at 19:33:26
This draw don't mean a thing. We still have to beat every team in the competition. There really is not an easy way to get to the final, we have to beat them, Bundesliga, La Liga or what ever.
Neil Roberts
95 Posted 29/08/2014 at 20:25:37
This is what we wanted, testing our selves against decent teams gaining European experience. Exciting times at Goodison Park this season...

There again, if we play against European teams like we did in pre-season, it may not be as exciting... I get the feeling this competition will only get better with Champions League as the main prize.

James Thornhill
96 Posted 29/08/2014 at 20:52:26
Myself and friend have just booked our flights for Wolfsburg (Hanover) but, having read that Wolfsburg is quite a drab place & Hanover is bouncing, we are in two minds where to stay.

Getting to Wolfsburg from Hanover is quite easy on the train and costs about €18, but getting back could be difficult as the last train leaves at 8pm... Any ideas?

We thought someone may know of a shuttle or coach, and according to Trip Advisor, a cab ride for the journey is about 𧴰.

Lyndon Lloyd
97 Posted 29/08/2014 at 21:30:29
Drew, you're right in pointing out how strong Wolfsburg are. I'm hoping Perisic hasn't recovered in time from his shoulder injury to face us in late November, though! Great player on the evidence of his contributions at the World Cup.
Derek Knox
98 Posted 29/08/2014 at 21:37:36
I know it's probably easier said than done, but if they can aim, to at least draw the away games, (without parking the proverbial bus) and if possible sneak a goal. Then let fortress Goodison be a bastion of European invincibility, and do not concede any away goals.

I know that probably sounds like stating the obvious, but none of these sides should be taken lightly, and try and field the strongest side possible.

Graham Duffy
99 Posted 29/08/2014 at 21:42:49
I'm haply with that! Could have been a lot worse - Inter and Valencia. Defo got a great chance of going through. Lille were what 4th, Wolfsburg 5th - in leagues not as good as ours an a Russian team I know nothing about - I'm happy just gotta play as good as we can an were thru!
Graham Duffy
100 Posted 29/08/2014 at 21:45:52
They will be thinking how strong we are!
Colin Glassar
101 Posted 29/08/2014 at 21:52:45
It's tougher than batty Boris, locomotive tractor and whatever other strange sounding teams we used to play against but it's definitely winnable.
Mark Frere
102 Posted 29/08/2014 at 21:54:15
Anyone who thinks we will be playing anywhere near our strongest side for these games are deluded. The PL will take priority and there's no way our players would fully recover in time to play by the time Sunday comes around.

This will be our team:

Robles
Hibbert Stones Alcaraz Oviedo/Garbutt
Gibson Besic
McGeady Osman Astu
Eto

Its not a bad side but is it strong enough to see us through the group? Very debatable. It may also be conceivable that Lille and Wolfsberg won't play their strongest side either. whatever, I'm really looking forward to the games... and it will be nice to get a closer look at the likes of Besic and Astu.

Steven Higgott
103 Posted 29/08/2014 at 22:05:57
This could be the best draw for us as if we got an easier group we might have gone into this tournament thinking we only have to turn up.

Now we have to think about how we can play these ties and we know these teams can hurt you if your wits are not about you but on the other hand these games if we use a strong squad then they are definitely win-able. COYB.

Tony Abrahams
104 Posted 29/08/2014 at 22:11:47
We had two really good games in Europe during the Moyes reign. Villarreal away and Fiorentina at Goodison. The common denominator in both being that we had to go for it. We have the crowd and the more we have a go, the better the response is from the terraces.

Going to need our crowd more than ever if we are to be successful because this competition looks very difficult on paper. I sense real belief coming back into our club which hasnÂ’t been felt for a long, long time though, and just hope we can continue to improve. If we can sort our defence out then IÂ’m sure we are going to start winning cups again, and wouldnÂ’t it be great to start with this one!

Jon Ferguson
105 Posted 29/08/2014 at 23:00:15
Mark - I disagree, I think we will see more rotation generally. I don't think it will be a Premier League first 11 and a Europa first 11.

Of those currently not starting, Stones, Oveido, Besic, McGeedy, Atsu and Eto could arguably be in our best first 11 anyway.

I very much doubt we will see much of Hibbert. I think Martinez has kept him due to the family nature of the club.

Sean Kelly
106 Posted 29/08/2014 at 23:17:36
There will be rotation in all competitions this year. If we need to put out a strong team in Europe it will depend on our fixtures either side of the game.

COYB. Now lets stuff Chelsea and Maureen first.

Dan Murphy
107 Posted 29/08/2014 at 23:26:21
I agree with Steve #103. We have to be up against a team considered decent to get the best out of us. It's not rocket science I'm sure most fans of any decent team say the same but we've seen last year against the big boys how we can turn up. And also I read on Tony's post about the game at Villarreal and home to Fiorentina under DM, and we played some cracking football because we knew we were facing the firing squad. Do see what I'm saying? Without any other unknown quantities running through the rest of the starting 11 those 2 names alone are gonna just jump out make a side and their fans feel like they're in for a right 90 minutes. I think we can shock ourselves this year I really do. Forever the optimist hey!!

COYB!!

John Pickles
108 Posted 29/08/2014 at 23:28:40
I bet perennial CL qualifiers Arsenal and Chelsea are more wary of a trip to Goodison at the moment than they would be to a trip to Wolfsburg or Lille. They are good sides but last season we showed we are capable of beating better ones. If we don't qualify from that or any other group it is a step backwards.
Dan Murphy
109 Posted 30/08/2014 at 00:02:24
Too right John. We just need to bring that level of ability to the games against the crystal palaces’ and Norwich and west broms and stokes of this world and we could actually finish 4th instead of 5th. I think Eto’o could really add to our game in those type of matches. How do you see tomorrow going?
John Pickles
110 Posted 30/08/2014 at 00:07:49
If the match ends after 70 mins Dan, we should be fine!
Dan Murphy
111 Posted 30/08/2014 at 00:25:45
Ha! Is right too! It was a seriously painful final 7 minutes last week against the gunners. I could feel it coming too. Weak goals to give away man.
Si Cooper
112 Posted 30/08/2014 at 01:18:49
Mark (102) - how did you come up with that team? Just pick those you don't think will be regular starters in the Premier League?

Playing two games in a week every now and then shouldn't be a problem for the players. We only have six games in the Europa League before Christmas, so it is hardly overloading them. I would expect the League Cup to be the competition that gets the lowest priority in the early rounds.

I can see maybe 4-5 players being rested / benched for Europa League games that will be followed by particularly tough Premier League games once we are a couple of months into the season, but until then I think 8-9 first team regulars will be doing double duty and they should be able to handle it. Minor injuries will obviously shake things up.

I don't think I am deluded, but I suppose we will find out. ;)

Steven Higgott
113 Posted 30/08/2014 at 08:55:54
Mark (#102) half of the team you mentioned are pushing for a starting XI place but the likes of Robles, Alcaraz, Hibbert, Garbutt... I am sorry but we can’t win anything with players of that level – especially at the back. I think Martinez knows that, so these players will play in the League Cup.

A couple of loan deals on Monday with experience and I think we really have a chance this season of picking up some silverware.

Anthony Flack
114 Posted 30/08/2014 at 10:09:16
Judging by the scarcity of hotel rooms and Eurostar tickets already I guess many have made travel arrangements already for Lille.

Just sorted trains and hotel for 𧴺 from London. Unless they release more tickets, I would get your skates on.
Cheers.

Rob Halligan
115 Posted 30/08/2014 at 10:13:43
Flight prices for Wolfsburg are ridiculous as well. Booked a flight to Amsterdam then train to Hannover. It’s only about half-an-hour by train from Hannover to Wolfsburg, but again every hotel we looked at had loads of UK viewers at the time. Managed to get one, but as Anthony says, if you’re thinking of going independently, then you better hurry up.
Robbie Muldoon
116 Posted 30/08/2014 at 10:12:28
WeÂ’re going to win the whole thing, donÂ’t care whoÂ’s in the group!!

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