Swindon Town 0 - 4 Everton
Mirallas finished his chances in some style
Pre-season started today in style for Everton with a warm-up match at the home of Swindon Town that saw Kevin Mirallas come on to score twice early in the second half.
His compatriot Romelu Lukaku grabbed the third and he fed the impressive Conor McAleny at the end for the fourth.
Martinez gave as many players as he could 45-minute run-outs, with wholesale changes at half-time. But Oviedo, Baines, Gibson and McGeady missed out with various injuries, while Garbutt and Stones are on leave after their efforts at U21 level for England.
There was a nice remembrance of Andy King, who died last month, before the game kicked off with Everton fielding a fairly strong line-up. But Coleman was sloppy and Swindon almost lobbed Howard who had to parry for a corner, defended away.
Barkley drove forward and played a good ball to Pienaar and Kone looked to play in a cross but Belford collected. There was some good running and passing but plenty of rustiness as the Blues put in some decent effort.
Deulofeu, wearing 19, did well to pull a nice ball back for Coleman but his first-time shot was well wide. McCarthy played a super ball for Deulofeu to run on to but the Spaniard's first touch was too heavy.
Some great close passing finally got the ball forward to Naismith but Belford parried his shot for a corner and Kone was adjudged to have fouled. Pienaar was next to have a pop but his shot almost cleared the stand! At the other end, Browning did well tot block a shot over for another Swindon corner.
Deulofeu had a great shot on goal that Belford saved well, with Everton looking bright and running forward at Swindon when they had the ball. However, Kone and Naismith were not really linking up very well, with Kone playing too many poor balls.
The referee called time with only 43˝ minutes played and it was a case of wholesale changes with only Browning and Galloway coming back out for the second half, which started in fine style with great work from Conor McAleny to set up Kevin Mirallas for the first goal.
The second goal soon followed, with another smart piece of work from McAleny, playing in Lukaku, who's excellent control and awareness saw he ball crossed to the feet of Mirallas who side-stepped Belford and tapped in at the post.
Besic overlapped nicely down the left and set up McAleny for a shot that went wide. Then Besic pulled up with what turned out to be an ankle injury and he was off down the tunnel after barely 20 minutes, to be replaced by a very young-looking JonJoe Kenny, wearing 43 and playing right back.
Everton kept up some good pressure through the second half, with Cleverley and McAleny catching the eye, while Swindon were limited to wild shots from distance despite putting up some determined resistance and getting forward when they got the ball.
Osman tried to play Lukaku in late on but his nice forward pass was just a little too strong. But a very nicely worked sequence involving Kenny, and McAleny with a superb cutback, to set up Lukaku to drive home Everton's third and most impressive goal.
There was more to come, Lukaku with space being closed down rapidly, passed unselfishly to Conor McAleny who picked his spot low at the far post to underscore a very strong contribution to an excellent first game of pre-season.
Swindon Town: Belford (62' Vasily), Williams, Rossi-Broneo (64' Storey), Sendles-White (65' Marshall), Robert (67' ), Ormonde-Ottoneill (58' Brophy), Byrne, Smith, Obika (71' Cooke), Kasim (58' Nicholson), Traore.
Everton: Howard (46' Robles); Coleman (46' Hibbert), Jagielka (46' Cleverley), Galloway, Browning; McCarthy (46' Barry), Deulofeu (46' McAleny), Barkley (46' Besic (67' Kenny)), Pienaar (46' Osman); Naismith (46' Mirallas); Kone (46' Lukaku).
Reader Comments (44)
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1 Posted 11/07/2015 at 15:11:08
2 Posted 11/07/2015 at 15:15:27
4 Posted 11/07/2015 at 15:35:24
Nice to hear Pienaar is fit enough to start.
6 Posted 11/07/2015 at 15:50:41
7 Posted 11/07/2015 at 15:55:16
8 Posted 11/07/2015 at 15:57:46
11 Posted 11/07/2015 at 16:46:25
Kone was absolutely shocking though!! Can't pass, can't shoot. Not good enough!!
12 Posted 11/07/2015 at 16:50:35
Decent workout for the players today, just goes to show again though that despite the detractors Mirallas is still by far the most obvious goal threat coming from midfield, if he was to leave it would for me be an even bigger loss to the side than McCarthy going.
14 Posted 11/07/2015 at 16:55:22
Shame about Besic who I thought also looked good.
Let's see how we do in Singapore against stiffer opposition. That will be more indicative of the season to come.
Anyhow, 4-0 gets us off to a decent start.
15 Posted 11/07/2015 at 16:58:34
17 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:07:20
18 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:08:20
Good to see he can still inject a negative tone in an appraisal of a 4-0 pre-season win in which we played some really nice creative football up front, saw young players offer real promise and never look troubled at the back.
Have you seen Inside Out Jim? You may want to let Sadness and Anger off your controls for a little while...
19 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:14:05
We have to hope Kev stays healthy this season being that he has eyes on a big contract or a move away he should be all out this season.
Nice to hear the big guy started sharp. How was his touch and holdup play?
20 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:28:12
Nice to see McAleny doing well, I really want him to succeed.
21 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:29:54
22 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:25:54
23 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:29:01
Well, fingers crossed that McAleny can put in a full preseason, and be given a proper first team opportunity. Always like seeing Everton lads coming through the ranks, but especially Connor - that kid has really gone through hell with his injuries. Hard to believe that he is only 21.
24 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:04:41
I said in the thread about Martinez wanting a couple of players that I thought Cleverley may of been brought in to play behind Lukaku but he never even got tried there, he played deep alongside Barry and looked neat and tidy so hopefully we are in the market for a quality playmaker to play at No.10.
From the little I did see I thought Browning looked ok, seems to look a lot more confident on the ball and looks to of filled out a bit more and have the physique to handle the prem. A good loan move for the season to get games would do him wonders I think.
Not a bad work out by the looks of things. Time to go to Singapore, get some good work in and do well in the games, pick up no injuries if possible then come back, get some more business done and get the new players bedded in and kick in on.
25 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:25:07
New season with new optimism. It's 11th July not 8th August, still plenty of time until the season starts and even more time for new signings, it would be nice to get them in early, but it would be nicer if certain people could at look at the positives for a change. We all know it's hard being an Evertonian but some of the negativity after 5 mins of one game is just ridiculous.
26 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:32:14
It's "realistic" to you to write off a player after 45 mins of a pre season game?
27 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:28:30
Hope Besic's pulling up there isn't the start of the dreaded hamstring curse again. And Kone... well he's certainly no better. I wonder what the excuse will be this season.
28 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:24:35
Martinez has to be happy with today's performance, even if it was only Swindon. Harder challengers to come; we must make sure we keep Mirallas and McCarthy, but Kone is out of his depth at Everton and we need to sign another striker. I would be worried if Lukaku got injured.
A left winger and a CB... then I think I would be happy with the squid we have.
29 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:46:49
Today was the first pre season game in prepartion for the new season and after five minutes and a sloppy pass you were all over it like a rash!
Do me a favour mate!
30 Posted 11/07/2015 at 17:57:20
32 Posted 11/07/2015 at 18:14:47
what happened last season doesn't matter, it's what's happening now that's important.
33 Posted 11/07/2015 at 18:33:49
These kids could save us a fortune. Could they be any worse than some of the players we've brought in either on loan or for a fee on big wages?
Not sure where young Chris Long is but he's another wee player deserving of a chance.
34 Posted 11/07/2015 at 18:37:28
35 Posted 11/07/2015 at 19:11:15
Although this game doesn't bear any significance, I think it does go to show that Mirallas must stay. He's a menace and he's a goal threat, we don't have many players we can boast that about and to buy some does not come cheap. I've stated all summer he should be kept and should start games, week-in and week-out. Hopefully he's got his head on the game and Roberto sees this and plays him.
Nice to see the young lads given an early opportunity to stake a claim too. Well done, boys.
36 Posted 11/07/2015 at 19:41:06
37 Posted 11/07/2015 at 19:52:10
39 Posted 11/07/2015 at 19:18:20
He was trying to impress and took a few shots. He is better when he moves around and finds space. His touch wasn't there. He looked out of puff after a couple of early runs and then got a second wind.
He tried to play Kone in a couple of times when he could have been more selfish. For me it also looked as though he had the first week of training in his legs but there is no doubt he has a chance of doing something special this season.
I was also very very impressed with the attitude of Kevin Mirallas -- not only tracking back but also his focus, bon homie with team mates, concentration all the way through, tackling and competing. I would guess RM has had a special word with him and maybe a new contract and love being shown to him behind the scenes... I would not believe he would leave in this window from what I saw today.
Other big impressions: Galloway - my MotM. Also Tyias Browning is a massive beast. Barkley also appeared to be lean and big. Stevie P looked oh so lively. The link up play he gives was very impressive.
Kone -- well... he tried hard, lost the ball a few times etc and looked out of sorts -- but also looked as though he could come good after a good pre-season. We just do not know how much volume of training are in the legs this week -- plus his Ramadan thing. (I'm trying to be generous.)
Besic -- also looked bigger and stronger and some amazing bursts of physicality. Shocked to see him pull up -- I hope it was a twinge and precautionary. It was worrying for a few minutes on the side, but when he was ready to go down the tunnel his face and the coaches seemed a little bit better... fingers crossed.
McCarthy looked leaden legged and average -- still shaped very well etc.
Coleman -- looked to be back to his attitude: if in trouble, move away from the pressing playe; again, at this stage, attitude etc very good. He looked to link up with Deulofeu and they talked a lot together before and during.
Tom Cleverley is obviously a class act and I watched his movement, balance and left-foot, right-foot combinations; short, long, dribble -- he is a really good addition and looks forward and turns a lot more than McCarthy.
Tim Howard looks at it and sharp from what I saw.
Jagielka was in a rhythm as per the end of last season rather then the World Cup hangover.
Rom looked at it and fit -- one great Maradona turn and always looking to make runs. He was genuinely pleased with his goal.
Overall impression: we are serious this Pre-season and at it from the start. Big Dunc is having an influence and his presence is there for all to see -- passion for EFC and he went on to complain to the ref for 2 mins short on first half.
I was pleased for Leon Osman and Tony Hibbert who are coming to the ends of their careers but still contributing really well.
All-in-all, one of the best pre-season showings at this first-week in stage. Stoke and Arsenal will have focused the minds of everyone and I think there is a lot of competition. RM should give at least one of the young ones a go.
I am dreaming of Kev, Rom and Ger giving some defences a kicking this season!
40 Posted 11/07/2015 at 20:02:11
41 Posted 11/07/2015 at 20:17:03
42 Posted 11/07/2015 at 20:22:54
The problem for managers in the Premier Leaguie is:- When do you start young players in a game? Roberto will get slaughtered on here if he sticks him in and we lose a match or two.
I'd go with him but can Martinez afford to gamble in the early season?
43 Posted 11/07/2015 at 20:44:38
45 Posted 11/07/2015 at 22:01:32
As for the game, I think Steve Jones (#39) wrote exactly what I would have. Can the doom and gloom merchants give it a rest. Support the team or at least wait till you have something decent to complain about.
46 Posted 11/07/2015 at 23:36:13
What really impressed me today was the level of support from the Everton fans. First friendly away against League One opponents and we easily sell out our section. I live in Swindon so travel was easy for me but I assume most of those fans either travelled down today from Liverpool or stayed over. Shows once again the commitment of Everton's supporters to their team. Great to see families in there too.
49 Posted 12/07/2015 at 02:36:11
50 Posted 12/07/2015 at 03:53:30
51 Posted 12/07/2015 at 04:41:39
Cleverley impressed me too. He likes to pass forward and respects the balance between retaining the ball and dwelling in possession. I really think he could be a key player.
Lukaku -- A nicely taken goal and two assists... but I was still a little disappointed. He looked so isolated up there at times which I blame on the manager... but he doesn't help himself with that woeful first touch. He's such a talented player, surely he can improve such a basic skill. And surely we can find a way to play more to his strengths. Maybe I'm being too harsh.
McCarthy was a little slack with his passing. I love the guy but he needs to cut that out of his game.
I sincerely hope that Gareth Barry playing in central defence is not something Roberto Martinez sees as a viable option this year. He's not a defender and he doesn't have the nous or pace to play the position. I'm praying that was just a 'needs must' situation until we bring in another CB.
Can't complain with a 4-0 win though. Just thought I'd highlight a few things I hope we can improve.
53 Posted 13/07/2015 at 07:55:39
I always felt he was overrated and if Spurs are willing to stump up that money...
54 Posted 13/07/2015 at 09:23:59
A mate of mine who is a Burnley fan says they are getting Long on loan for the season. Maybe he is already there?
55 Posted 13/07/2015 at 10:01:03
We were so much better in the second half; suddenly the gulf in class was evident, whereas in the first it wasn't far off looking even. I liked Deulofeu's little wave to the fans at the start, though he looked very rusty in his play. Galloway impressed me, bursting forward every chance he got.
Living where I do, this is the only chance I'll probably ever get to watch the blueboys on a Saturday afternoon and be home by 5:15. Nice touch that juniors were a pound (though I'd be pissed off if I'd paid the 㾻 for advance junior tickets). A tenner for parking at the ground is criminal.
Finally, Swindon's ground is awful. Makes Goodison look state of the art.
56 Posted 14/07/2015 at 11:20:34
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