Europa League Preview
Koeman: "Maybe I am [already] in the crisis"
Everton play what is, arguably, their most important match of the season so far when French side Lyon come to Goodison Park in the Europa League.
The Blues have picked up just one point from their first two matches in Group E, having disgraced themselves in the opener at Atalanta and then thrown away two points against Apollon Limassol last time out.
The number of draws in the group games so far means that all four teams are close in the standings but Ronald Koeman is under pressure to start putting wins on the board on all three fronts on which Everton are engaged, particularly following another disappointing display in the Premier League at Brighton last Sunday.
Since beating Hajduk Split 2-0 in the home leg of the Europa League qualifier in mid-August, Koeman has overseen just two wins, the 2-1 triumph over Bournemouth and a 3-0 hammering of Sunderland in the League Cup, and that has intensified the scrutiny of his position at Everton.
The Dutchman was asked in his press conference today if he felt that, true to Craig Shakespeare's prescient recent assessment that Premier League managers are always four games away from a crisis, he felt that he, too, was in the same situation in the wake of the Leicester boss' sacking from the Midlands club.
“Maybe I am [already] in the crisis”, Koeman smiled. “But, okay, everybody knows that the manager's job is a really difficult job because things change really fast.
“We know that most of the time the manager doesn't really get the time to improve the team. But it's football, it's hard to take for the managers but it's part of the job.”
Koeman repeated his lament about not getting enough time between games to properly coach the players on his preferred methods and tactics and to prepare them for the next match but he will know that pressure will be on to get a victory against Lyon.
“It's [a] really important [game]. We know the situation in the group — that we need a win. We expected a win last time but unluckily the team from Cyprus scored in the last minute.
“But, you know, it's only one out of two [matches], you need a win. A win at home — normally you need 3 wins at home and maybe you pick something [up from] the away games, then It's OK.
“The situation is we need to win tomorrow to get the good possibilities to [progress] in the tournament.”
His prospects of doing that have been boosted by the news that Lyon will travel to Merseyside without five injured players. Pape Cheikh Diop, one-time reported Blues target Clement Grenier, and Jeremy Morel were already ruled out and now forward Mariano Diaz and left-back Ferland Mendy have been added to the list.
The French side will make the trip in good confidence, however, on the back of just one league defeat in Ligue 1 so far, that to title favourites Paris St Germain. As expected for a club of their recent achievements on the domestic and European fronts, they will still boast plenty of talent.
France international Nabil Fekir, who has a strike rate of a goal every three games in Ligue 1, will lead the line for l'OL who also boast the likes of Brazilian defender Rafael and ex-Chelsea and Ajax attacking midfielder Bertrand Traoré in their ranks.
Former Manchester United winger Memphis Depay, another player once seriously eyed by Everton, will return to Goodison for the first time since watching on from the sidelines as an unused substitute during a League game two years ago.
Koeman, meanwhile, will have the same squad from which to choose as he did last Sunday, with the exception of Oumar Niasse who is ineligible for the group phase of the Europa League.
James McCarthy is fit again but will be rested after playing 45 minutes for the Under-23s last night but could be in the frame for Sunday's clash with Arsenal. Jonjoe Kenny picked up a knock on Under-21s duty for England and is a doubt.
As ever, much attention will be devoted to how Koeman sets out his team as he struggles to find a winning combination, particularly in forward areas where a glut of attack-minded central midfielders is starving the team of width. He has no shortage of options — Kevin Mirallas made an almost heroic cameo as a late substitute on Sunday while Sandro Ramirez and Davy Klaassen weren't involved at all — but it seems as though the lack of a focal point up front and repetitively narrow and unbalanced line-ups is the greater concern.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin was, unsuccessfully, deployed out wide at Brighton while Wayne Rooney operated as an ineffective striker with Gylfi Sigurdsson behind him.
Nikola Vlasic, who has been a bright spot in an otherwise frustrating season thus far, will be pushing for another start but by his manager's own admission, he, too, is a player who looks at his best when played through the middle.
However Koeman elects to approach the match, there is no question that a win is vital for both morale and the team's prospects of getting out of the group. It wouldn't signal that Everton's problems have been resolved overnight but it would be a start and it would, at least, test the manager's theory that all his outfit needs is a victory to revive the Blues' fortunes. Lose and the pressure on his shoulders will only intensify.
Kick-off: 8.05pm, Thursday 19 October, 2017
Predicted Line-up: Pickford, Holgate, Keane, Jagielka, Baines, Gueye, Schneiderlin, Vlasic, Sigurdsson, Rooney, Calvert-Lewin
Reader Comments (151)
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1 Posted 18/10/2017 at 17:40:32
2 Posted 18/10/2017 at 17:49:48
Give them a team and a system they can believe in, not just hope for the best every game. You are right, Lyndon. Gueye and Schneiderlin will probably start, which is criminal. He'll do the same again. The same idea. The same approach.
God, it really is maddening.
3 Posted 18/10/2017 at 17:56:40
We've seen the same tired formation, week-in & week-out and it's painful to watch but the only person who can't see it is the one who matters most.
Play that side and I think we 'll be out by 10 tomorrow night. Then again I wouldn't be too bothered. We're hardly equipped to win it. No, we've got far more pressing matters. Need I say more?
4 Posted 18/10/2017 at 17:57:30
An early goal??? You having a laugh. A goal is hard enough to come by, nevermind choosing when we score one. I've got the best seat in the house reserved – behind the sofa, blindfolded. Could / should be Koeman's last game (fingers crossed).
5 Posted 18/10/2017 at 18:00:01
Another defeat looming methinks! 3-1 Lyon.
6 Posted 18/10/2017 at 18:04:04
The remaining 6 (+ er, sub-standard players?) might laugh themselves into tears when they see our very well organized offensive set-up, so we could get in some lucky goals when they're not seeing clearly...
7 Posted 18/10/2017 at 18:04:35
This game is so important, I'd be surprised if he did ditch the "safety" of the Gueye - Schneiderlin partnership but we'll see.
I predict the same line-up as Sunday but perhaps he'll change the way it's set up, with Calvert-Lewin perhaps going central and Rooney and Sigurdsson operating behind him.
8 Posted 18/10/2017 at 18:09:10
Holgate is no right back; two defensive midfielders at home in a must win game nonsense. Sigurdsson and Rooney will be tripping themselves up in the same area of the pitch.
Calvert-Lewin as a lone striker ridiculous. Vlasic always wants to come in centrally so will be tripping up the others. I would go 4-3-3:
Martina, Keane, Jagielka. Baines
Davies, Gueye, Sigurdsson / Rooney
Lookman (where is he?), Calvert-Lewin, Mirallas
9 Posted 18/10/2017 at 18:10:08
If we play 2 at home to Burnley, we all know he'll just have to fight temptation (and squad impossibilities) to not play 3 defensive midfielders vs Lyon...
10 Posted 18/10/2017 at 18:10:50
I would like to see a 4-3-3 based on Man City's free-scoring blueprint. Now before you laugh, look at the squad in detail and you will see that we do have the players for it. Obviously not to their standard but it would be a much better fit than 4-2-3-1:
Holgate, Keane, Jagielka, Baines
Lookman, Calvert-Lewin, Mirallas
Gueye takes the Fernandinho role and Davies & Sigurdsson take the two No 8 roles of Silva and De Bruyne. Davy and Vlasic would also be options here. Schneiderlin just doesn't fit into this system so pays the price for his woeful form.
Up front, you need runners to use this system. Man City have Sterling, Sane and Jesus. Lookman, Mirallas and Calvert-Lewin all have pace and could cause problems on the counter. Niasse could also play as the No 9, but Rooney wouldn't really have a role in this system, so I don't expect to see it anytime soon.
11 Posted 18/10/2017 at 18:13:50
12 Posted 18/10/2017 at 18:16:24
Aside from the team selection I think that Koeman's press conference comments suggest that he will be with us until at least November, regardless of the result tomorrow. In have stated on other threads that I believe Moshiri is working behind the scenes to prepare a successor and I still think that to be the case.
13 Posted 18/10/2017 at 18:29:35
The holding midfielders are just not good enough to help protect the back 3 or 4 whichever strategy they use.
Calvert-Lewin needs a partner but not Rooney or Sandro. Vlasic seems worth a shot further forward with Lookman getting a shot sometime.
14 Posted 18/10/2017 at 18:48:28
15 Posted 18/10/2017 at 18:49:55
Home-sickness, though, that I'd understand! The silly wages around could let either himself, or the club, pay for some relative(s) to move into the area for a year or two! (...)
16 Posted 18/10/2017 at 18:50:34
I would replace Mirallas with Vlasic from your selection, which would enable the 4-3-3 to switch to 4-4-2 if so desired. And Kenny might get my nod at right back.
Easy, this management lark!
17 Posted 18/10/2017 at 18:53:52
He was definitely to blame for Brighton's goal, with his usual ball watching. I don't feel in any way optimistic about tomorrow's game. In fact ,while Koeman is there, my interest will be peripheral.
18 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:03:27
19 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:10:56
Holgate Keane Jagielka Baines
Vlasic Sigurdsson Mirallas
20 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:15:51
Many teams play two holding midfield players. Our problem is not so much following suit but fielding two players in Gueye and Schneiderlin who have shown neither the ability nor the application to form an effective partnership.
Both have been especially woeful in recent matches: Schneiderlin with his defensive play and Gueye with his use of the ball. Therefore I hope to see Davies introduced to bring a higher tempo to our play through midfield.
Further up the field, I hope the manager makes a choice between Rooney and Sigurdsson. I don't care which one is selected but if he continues to pick both they will continue to get in each other's way and clog up our attacking play. Instead, we need to bring more width and pace to our attacking play and the best currently available in that regard is Mirallas.
I doubt if Koeman will see things that way. More likely he will repeat the mistakes made in previous matches in a fruitless attempt to prove he was right all along.
21 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:19:20
22 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:21:53
Tom Davies, should always be in the line-up as a starter, if he does not start he shrugs it off and thinks he must improve. Let him start let him be the stud he is and let him go be the player he is capable of being. Go Toffees
23 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:25:19
Kenny Keane Holgate Baines
24 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:28:38
Martina Keane Williams Baines
Vlasic Rooney Sigurdsson
Here's what I would go with:
Kenny Keane Holgate Baines
Davies Schneiderlin Klaassen
Lookman Calvert-Lewin Sigurdsson
25 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:37:42
26 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:40:20
He was admittedly poor in the second leg of the Split tie, but was very good in the prior match, before running out of gas in the second half. He's still raw and makes mistakes, but I feel like his potential quality is always on display.
27 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:40:45
28 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:41:50
Play Davies and change the dynamics of the engine room. Davies can drag Schneiderlin forwards, 10 or 20 yards up the pitch. There is no reason for him to play as deep as he has been. This needs to change.
For me, the best period we had under Koeman came when Schneiderlin and Davies played together and Gueye was off at the African Cup of Nations, and then sat on the bench waiting to get back into the side.
I also agree on just one of those two No 10s and then use the extra position in the side by injecting some width on the wings. Also, play Kenny to get some more width and pace.
And drop Williams in favour of Holgate to be able to play a higher line and get the pressing game going. You cannot press if you sit so deep, as the pressing needs to be done with a high defensive line and a compact team from front to back.
29 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:46:34
30 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:56:19
If you think Holgate is dreadful, have you not seen Martina?
As for Baxter, is he even registered?
31 Posted 18/10/2017 at 19:58:23
Pickford. Kenny / Martina, Keane, Jagielka, Baines. Rooney. Davies, Vlasic, Mirallas, Sigurdsson, Calvert-Lewin.
In recent games Rooney has been playing far too deep, so let him be the holding midfielder. Let him break up attacks and spray the ball forward, or give it to Tom Davies to carry. Let's have width with either Vlasic or Mirallas, with either one or the other playing more central midfield. Finally play Sigurdsson just behind Calvert-Lewin.
Crazy, I know... but it might confuse the French lot.
32 Posted 18/10/2017 at 20:07:46
33 Posted 18/10/2017 at 20:17:14
Is anyone seriously suggesting that we can win the Europa League? Okay, I can see the merit as a nice little earner for the club, but I also see it as detrimental to our Premier League campaign.
I know many will disagree with this view, but I would have used these games to play a few fringe players and experiment a little with the structure of the team.
34 Posted 18/10/2017 at 20:19:30
35 Posted 18/10/2017 at 20:21:16
36 Posted 18/10/2017 at 21:06:02
EVERTON Stekelenburg, Holgate, Keane, Williams, Baines, Schneiderlin, Gueye, Davies, Sigurdsson, Mirallas, Calvert-Lewin.
Be interesting to see what sort of reaction that selection gets if correct!
37 Posted 18/10/2017 at 21:08:07
It all matters for naught Morgan 'cant track / tackle / block a post in my own box' Schneiderlin and Wayne 'blowing out me arse and still running around like a blue-arsed fly'. Rooney will start :-(
38 Posted 18/10/2017 at 21:11:29
39 Posted 18/10/2017 at 21:18:43
40 Posted 18/10/2017 at 21:20:16
Calvert-Lewin & Lookman to start!! Bloody crime if we loose promising young players, hanging on to the past as usual!!!
41 Posted 18/10/2017 at 21:25:38
On the other hand if you don't we will see what we don't to see and you will be booed out of Goodison.
42 Posted 18/10/2017 at 22:05:06
Time you collected.
43 Posted 18/10/2017 at 22:05:35
Definitely happened because I was so excited I went straight on line, I had just milked the cows as well so not like I just got up. Please someone tell me it is true!!!!
44 Posted 18/10/2017 at 22:07:18
45 Posted 18/10/2017 at 22:09:11
46 Posted 18/10/2017 at 22:19:06
That's how I tried to set it up but it didn't come out that way; however, I believe that team couldn't be any worse than what we are seeing now.
47 Posted 18/10/2017 at 22:43:21
48 Posted 18/10/2017 at 22:46:22
I watched Chelsea/Roma and it may of been pie in the sky but there was much discussion about Dzeko in the summer. Why in God's name he would have come here I don't know but if there was an ounce of possibility in it we should have bust ourselves to get him.
A proper Number 9 and scored an absolute worldy tonight, as well as a good headed goal.
Meanwhile we are linked with some total dross. This is all getting so painful now I just wish we would just turn it round or pull the trigger pronto.
49 Posted 18/10/2017 at 22:57:19
51 Posted 18/10/2017 at 23:11:28
52 Posted 18/10/2017 at 23:32:17
Calvert-Lewin still has a ways to go and should have scored the go-ahead goal against Brighton but he needs an experienced partner but it isn't Sandro.
It's difficult to imagine Lookman and Vlasic on each flank starting but both these lads have ability to go past an opponent. Mirallas may get the nod in the absence of any other experienced forward but I fear he is also past his best in consistency.
It will be another difficult game tomorrow unless they can come out firing and really take it to the opposition. Koeman, however, seems like a man who will not change his style.
53 Posted 18/10/2017 at 23:32:57
54 Posted 18/10/2017 at 23:54:31
The coaching of this group of players is substandard and, until there is an injection of pride, passion, energy and organised game plan, we will be lambs to the slaughter. I'm going for a 2-0 win for the blues! Well, we can dream!
55 Posted 19/10/2017 at 00:22:13
56 Posted 19/10/2017 at 00:25:37
Kenny, Keane, Jagielka, Baines
Vlasic, Davies, Sigurdsson, Lookman
Each player playing in their own position don't change it for 6 games.
57 Posted 19/10/2017 at 00:30:00
Holgate (Kenny if fit) Keane Jagielka Baines
Vlasic Gueye Davies Mirallas
With Vlasic and Mirallas playing slightly in front of Gueye and Davies becoming wingers when attacking but also falling back when defending. Sigurdsson in a free sole role – link from defence to attack, and Rooney moving from one side to the other, on the last man, creating free space for himself.
58 Posted 19/10/2017 at 00:32:47
59 Posted 19/10/2017 at 02:30:01
61 Posted 19/10/2017 at 05:08:29
I know it looks to us like that won't happen, but if you view it from the manager's perspective, perhaps if he keeps drilling a certain way of playing in training and then they keep trying it each match day, then finally it will gel?
Clutching at straws here, I know. But it kind of makes sense as opposed to chopping and changing formations every week.
62 Posted 19/10/2017 at 06:43:21
The situation could become very uncomfortable,and all in front of millions on Sky. That's why Koeman should be replaced first thing Friday morning if the worst happens tonight.
At least by appointing Unsworth on some sort of short term basis, a hostile, embarrassing scenario on Sunday can be avoided. Unsworth will have the crowd onside and backing him and the team,right from the off, which Koeman certainly won't if it all goes pear shaped this evening.
63 Posted 19/10/2017 at 06:56:35
Hoping the crowd will get behind the team in this competition and boo them at other times, even if they are trailing.
COYB! Show some guts and character and make it hell for them.
64 Posted 19/10/2017 at 07:12:41
65 Posted 19/10/2017 at 07:18:07
66 Posted 19/10/2017 at 07:22:56
Or believing the pairing are safe in their positions?
Either way, they should not be picked together as they are neither a safe pairing or safe!!!!!!
68 Posted 19/10/2017 at 07:38:54
I'm normally a positive person but can't help feeling that the season will be over in 2 weeks time! Horrible when you see the other clubs doing so well!!
69 Posted 19/10/2017 at 08:04:48
I loved watching Pienaar play, loved the way he always came towards the ball, and always thought it was probably the way he was schooled at Ajax. I always think the English coach kids to run away from the ball, and it's one of the reasons that most English players are not very good with the ball in tight situations.
Even If we could master this first bit, I still wouldn't get excited, simply because we have nobody who is trying to get ahead of the ball. Maybe the sign of things to come could be the movement off the center-forward? Niasse should have played Sigurdsson in on Sunday, but I still think the tactics will always be flawed while we play without width.
70 Posted 19/10/2017 at 08:44:10
71 Posted 19/10/2017 at 09:04:44
I think as they have struggled against Apollon and Atalanta, Lyon are a grade above those two.
I will of course watch the game, but do not do so with any optimism or passion.
72 Posted 19/10/2017 at 09:44:21
I hope so. Come on you blues. Make us believe again. 💙
73 Posted 19/10/2017 at 09:52:05
But, we all live in hope. I think this weeks wages should depend on the result. Win, happy days; draw, 50%; lose, fuck all. Might help to concentrate their minds.
74 Posted 19/10/2017 at 10:38:10
Not saying he's the missing link but he had pace and how can a player be deemed worthy of a place with the Champions League favorites but couldn't get into our 'all conquering' side last season?
75 Posted 19/10/2017 at 10:46:18
Atalanta +3 4pts
Lyon +0 2pts
Limassol +0 2pts
Everton -3 1pts
Lyon away, then Atalanta at home to come but who knows we might get through.
76 Posted 19/10/2017 at 10:51:20
The Premier League matches are whats important , everything else is bonus material.
I would be more attacking tonight , drop one of the defensive midfielders.
Kenny Keane Jagielka Baines
Vlasic Davies Sigurdsson Mirallas
77 Posted 19/10/2017 at 11:09:41
78 Posted 19/10/2017 at 11:11:57
So I expect Koeman to play his seasoned established players tonight, so I don't expect many if any changes from Saturday. When managers are under pressure, they all turn to the established players, even though in most cases the same established players got them into the mess in the first place. So sadly I don't expect to see Lookman or Kenny tonight.
I am sure despite him telling the press the board are behind him, he knows that results alone will determine his fate. I would love him to be bold and play Lookman and Kenny and play a more attacking game but he won't. I think the fans would not be as critical if he did.
80 Posted 19/10/2017 at 11:32:03
We are not progressing much further in this competition unless we start producing, so we should take the bull by the horns and just go for it now. Win, lose or draw, if we put in a good showing the fans will respond and respect that, and eventually get back onside but like you, I can't see it happening.
Unfortunately, caution is most likely going to be the theme again, for better or (probably) worse.
81 Posted 19/10/2017 at 11:39:05
Martina Keane Jagielka Baines
Sigurdsson Gueye Schneiderlin Vlasic
It will be the usual sit deep sideways backwards pedestrian bullshit he has been serving up since the last half of last season, nothing will change. Koeman is incapable of picking a team that will attack, he is incapable of playing players in their strongest position and he is incapable of Changing his approach.
We are going to get hammered tonight and anyone on this forum who thinks otherwise is deluded, there has been no sign whatsoever of this team adapting to Koeman's style (whatever that is) and no sign of improvement over a full 90 minutes.
The sooner this clown is gone the better. Sorry for being so negative but I feel like I've had the shit kicked out of me this season.
82 Posted 19/10/2017 at 12:05:25
From kickoff until we invariably fall behind, it is a system of containment. Once we fall behind, it decends into gung-ho, every-man-for-himself chaos.
83 Posted 19/10/2017 at 12:10:02
This is a must-win and we need the crowd on board as well so Ronald needs to get this one right.
84 Posted 19/10/2017 at 12:16:57
85 Posted 19/10/2017 at 12:18:34
Why is it that so many European teams spend far less than their English counterparts yet are far superior tactically? Better coaches? Better players? Higher expectations? Better tactics? Most of those things I suppose.
Our expectations have been zilch for far too long. Somebody really needs to grab this club by the scruff of its neck. Maybe one day?
86 Posted 19/10/2017 at 12:21:32
Despite the crap going on at the moment, I'm still gonna get behind the boys.
87 Posted 19/10/2017 at 12:24:53
In fact, it would probably be a kinder score not to turn up and take the 0-3 default scoreline...
How is that for managing expectations?
88 Posted 19/10/2017 at 12:25:36
89 Posted 19/10/2017 at 13:42:58
90 Posted 19/10/2017 at 13:50:39
Kenny Holgate Keane Baines
Sigurdsson Mirallas Lookman
A team with pace; no chance of it happening though.
91 Posted 19/10/2017 at 13:53:51
Even beating Lyon tonight. Are we going to then go on and win this competition? Are Everton now not just a team that make up the numbers. Is this competition not just a strain on our already tired looking players? Should we not just concentrate on climbing the league and maybe getting a decent run in our domestic cups? And most importantly. Will we manage to win any of our next four matches. Hhhmmm. I'm not sure that we will.
The predicted team has managed to do nothing all season. No real reason to think that tonight will be any different. Yet again we will start with two DMFs. Two DMFs that do what exactly?
But who knows? Our players might decide to turn up tonight. Our manager might have some sort of a plan. Who knows. So its once more on to the breach... Come on you sloppy old blues. How about surprising us all tonight.
92 Posted 19/10/2017 at 14:19:18
Flair, unpredictability, several goal threats, players with a point to prove and no Rooney and Schneiderlin.
Ironically, the Dutchman will pick exactly the same too... the same as he picked at Brighton on Sunday.
His idea of freshening things up will no doubt be to bring Stekelenburg, Martina and Williams back in.
Or worse, put McCarthy alongside Schneiderlin and Gueye in midfield and achieve a state of nirvana by having three defensive midfielders in the same team, at home!
93 Posted 19/10/2017 at 14:38:57
I'm seriously tempted at 28/1 for a 3-0 Lyon win TBH.
That based on our and their current form, I cannot see where our next win is coming from.
If he goes with the same team and tactics, it could be a very disappointing night.
94 Posted 19/10/2017 at 14:42:12
In other news, some bloke ran a simulator against our form vs chances of progressing to the group stages – he ran it 1 million times and we have a 34% chance of making it; we need to get 4 points off Lyon over the two games, so we're fucked.
I'm working tonight so won't have to sit through it anyway...
95 Posted 19/10/2017 at 14:44:07
Kenny Keane Holgate Baines
Vlasic Rooney Lookman
Or Sigurdsson in Rooney's place. Anyway, pie-in-the-sky nonsense. It'll be the same idiotic line-up as usual with Schneiderlin and Gueye, Rooney and Sigurdsson.
I'm not looking forward to this game at all. Even if we win, it'll be tempered with the knowledge that Koeman has a reprieve. That doesn't mean I don't want us to win, but I just want him gone.
96 Posted 19/10/2017 at 14:59:02
97 Posted 19/10/2017 at 15:04:35
First home game I've missed all season but I honestly couldn't build up any excitement for the hour and half drive over to watch it. I'm losing the will to subject myself to the shit we have to put up with from this manager.
Good luck tonight boys, will be cheering you on always, just form the sofa for a change. If this ones a loss he has to be sacked in the morning, I can't put up with the aggravating and soul-destroying interviews and lack of enthusiasm for our football club any longer.
98 Posted 19/10/2017 at 15:17:21
99 Posted 19/10/2017 at 15:18:34
100 Posted 19/10/2017 at 15:18:51
101 Posted 19/10/2017 at 15:20:18
102 Posted 19/10/2017 at 15:38:10
If Koeman wasn't under so much pressure to get a win on the board, I could see him playing a very different side, but the predicament we are in means he is looking desperate for a morale-boosting result.
The Premier League is far more important and we are going to need our squad fit and healthy, especially our centre-halves and the sooner we are out of this, the better.
103 Posted 19/10/2017 at 15:42:09
104 Posted 19/10/2017 at 15:52:54
If you we can go far in Europe (which I know is unlikely atm) that would be great get our players used to playing in high pressure environments against European opposition.
105 Posted 19/10/2017 at 15:57:13
106 Posted 19/10/2017 at 16:11:57
Kenny Holgate Keane Baines
Sigurdsson Mirallas Lookman
Sandro / Calvert-Lewin
I would not play Rooney; as I have said many times before, having to accommodate him has been the problem, making the team unbalanced and inflexible.
107 Posted 19/10/2017 at 16:14:38
Apparently Sky are saying Keane isn't playing. Injured?
108 Posted 19/10/2017 at 16:19:14
109 Posted 19/10/2017 at 16:33:30
110 Posted 19/10/2017 at 16:38:11
Despite all the evidence to the contrary, I keep on hoping something will click.
111 Posted 19/10/2017 at 16:38:53
At least if it's on several decent TV channels, the internet streams should be readily available and of decent quality.
112 Posted 19/10/2017 at 16:43:59
The actual line-up will make us all groan and hold our heads no doubt. If true that Keane isn't playing then we have the joy of welcoming Williams back.
115 Posted 19/10/2017 at 16:55:23
Answers on a postcard...
116 Posted 19/10/2017 at 17:02:25
117 Posted 19/10/2017 at 17:08:19
Instead, enter Rooney, Klaassen, Sigurdsson, Sandro, Vlasic...
To quote Rafa Benitez (during his Valencia days) – "I asked for a table and they bought me a lamp..."
That's not to excuse the total dross we've been served up in recent months, which is as bad as anything I remember in nearly 60 years of watching the club. Or the failure to field a side which shows some semblance of balance or tactical acumen.
Will he be sacked? I doubt it. Moshiri's judgement is on the line at the moment and I'll be surprised if he pulls the trigger at this stage. But this is football! Anything can happen in the next half-hour...
118 Posted 19/10/2017 at 17:28:45
119 Posted 19/10/2017 at 17:33:08
15 years ago, how many of us had heard of Villarreal? Not too many, I'll bet, myself included!! But we all recognise their name now because they've become European regulars. You can also see the same thing happening now with Krasnodar and Bate Borisov.
Regular European football also helps attract players. Cast your minds back to the European ban in the late 80s. Look how many English players headed to Scotland to play for Rangers. They didn't do that 'cos of the quality of the Scottish League, or the scorching Scottish sunshine!! They did it because they knew Rangers would be in Europe every season!! And as well as helping Rangers, it also enhanced their own playing profile, which they couldn't do with an English club at that time.
People wanting us to get knocked out need to have a long hard think about just what it is they're wishing for – especially when players are turning us down because we don't compete on a regular basis in the Europa League, let alone the Champions League!!
120 Posted 19/10/2017 at 17:36:45
You might be able to see something here:
Full Match and Extended Highlights
121 Posted 19/10/2017 at 17:44:46
122 Posted 19/10/2017 at 17:49:41
123 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:01:42
The fact he has changed everything and he is putting square pegs in round holes shows you it is Koeman's fault. This is his design. He is the author of his own misfortune.
As for tonight, I believe that somehow we will win. I foresee a Koeman renaissance in order for him to cling on to his job.
124 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:02:29
I can't see our crappy defense keeping their forward players down to less than 1 so I guess we may scrape a draw or it's another loss. I certainly can't see a win atm. Very sad times.
125 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:04:55
126 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:11:30
127 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:25:15
I agree about the U23 game.
128 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:26:29
We held all the aces against Man Utd, and ended up with a busted flush.
What on earth is going on with the recruitment, it is a shambles .... is one of our directors a double agent for Man Utd?
129 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:30:54
130 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:33:23
131 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:38:28
132 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:39:25
He's going to march out Lyndon's line-up, two defensive mids, and I'm going to lose my mind.
I'd love to see, especially at home, a 4-1-3-2 type of set up with two attacking center forwards. I honestly don't care who plays where – we are a team with too many #10s so it really doesn't matter. Just try a more attacking set up.
Oh, and if he starts Davies at least I'll be happy about that even if it is a two holding mid boring set up. Doubt that will happen as well.
133 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:44:10
134 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:45:48
135 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:46:55
136 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:48:22
137 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:51:20
138 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:52:07
139 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:53:27
140 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:53:53
141 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:54:14
142 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:55:16
144 Posted 19/10/2017 at 18:55:52
It'd be a tad ironic if two of the players Koeman wanted to ship out in Niasse and Mirallas earned him a stay of execution.
146 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:00:54
147 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:01:18
149 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:03:01
Holgate, Keane, Williams, Martina
Vlasic, Klaassen, Mirallas
150 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:03:03
151 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:03:25
153 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:04:15
154 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:04:42
No Rooney and Lookman finally gets a hint of some game time.
155 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:05:08
156 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:05:10
Midfield John Daly (nothing past him) and Eugene Ruane (sp?) for "creativity".
158 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:05:37
160 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:10:07
161 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:10:57
162 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:11:17
163 Posted 19/10/2017 at 19:17:05
It's been ugly and frustrating so far but every worm turns and it's just a matter of when it happens, what spark will get us moving, If the players and manager are stupid then they are only 12 games stupid.
Fingers crossed that its tonight when the real Everton and the real Evertonians show up.
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