My key dates

by   |   30/08/2018  5 Comments  [Jump to last]

There are a few dates in my calendar that will be a firm indicator for how far we have moved forward under Marco Silva:

Brighton & Hove Albion (H), 3 November – After this game, we will have played two of the big 6, the two that we stand the best chance of challenging this season, and after a relatively easy start for us, the season will have settled down.

Leicester City (H), 1 January – Half-way point but also following our hardest month (December), playing three of last season's top four as well as some difficult away games; it’s at this point I think we will know for sure how much progress we have or haven’t made.

Liverpool (H), 2 March – At this point, I think we will know if we can challenge for a top 6 place this season and if we can start to finally put last season behind us once and for all.

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Reader Comments (5)

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Michael Kenrick
1 Posted 30/08/2018 at 20:16:01
Yea, there's something to be said for breaking up the season into nice clean two-month chunks, Peter, and making a balanced assessment of our progress under Marco Silva as the season develops. Kinda moves us on from that tiresome reassessment of progress, and the inevitable future projection that seems to occur by extrapolating the last result after every game, which is the trap we can fall into currently without this kind of invaluable perspective.

I think, for peace of mind, I would add another key date: Tottingham Hotspur (A), 12 May — after this game, I feel certain that we will know for sure how we fared, how far we really will have progressed under Marco Silva, whether we were able to make a dent in the top 6, and what our finishing position in the Premier League will actually be.

I'm not so convinced that we will have much indication of this at the time of your January 1 mid-point key date. Without knowing what the first half of the season will be like at this early stage, I feel, being the eternal optimist, that we could still have a far better second half of the season, so to project forward based on the first half of the season seems too restrictive for me.

What is it the stockbrokers say? "Past results should not used as a predictor of future performance" – I'd hate for us to go off half-cock with an entire half-season of games still to play, but already convinced of how much progress we have or haven't made.

Will the season really have 'settled down' by 1 November? I'm a bit puzzled by that, to be honest. As I recall from previous seasons, there's usually been plenty of twists and turns over the remaining games going forward from November. Maybe I'm wrong but somebody could perhaps do a correlation analysis: position on 1 November vs position in the final table. That would help give me added perspective and confidence in your progressively developed assessment approach by way of these interim key dates before I totally buy into it.

Lawrence Green
2 Posted 30/08/2018 at 20:56:38
Surprisingly the beginning of November is a fairly good break point to assess the likely finishing league position of Everton, but obviously nothing is certain in football, else we'd all be millionaires.

Below is a list of Everton's position going into November with the final position given in brackets. Last season saw the starkest rise whilst most of the other seasons the club slipped a place or two from November to final match.
2017 18th (8th)
2016 6th (7th)
2015 12th (11th)
2014 9th (11th)
2013 4th (5th)
2012 5th (6th)

Dennis Stevens
3 Posted 31/08/2018 at 11:30:18
Nice stats, Lawrence. I can only assume that we must have had a game in hand at the start of November 2015!
David Ellis
4 Posted 01/09/2018 at 04:26:42
A rather depressing set of statistics, Lawrence. It'll only get worse after the end of October then!
David McMullen
5 Posted 01/09/2018 at 12:50:13
The away games from now till January look tough going. Anything from any of them will be a good sign, win any I think it'll be a good season for sure.

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