Everton vs Southampton

Wednesday, 8 July, 2020 154comments  |  Jump to last

Mason Holgate is ruled out with a shin injury and is expected to be replaced by Yerry Mina

Under fire following a dismal showing at Spurs on Monday, Everton are back at Goodison Park tomorrow evening to take on improved Southampton.

In his pre-match press conference, Carlo Ancelotti insisted that while European qualification was still a possibility, his players would need to fight for every victory, but he will know that the Blues simply have to win to keep alive their hopes of finishing in a Europa League spot.

The defeat the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium left Everton in 11th place in the table, seven points off seventh place with only five games left. More than that, however, the insipid manner of the defeat means supporters watching on from home will be demanding a response from the team.

They will also be eyeing Ancelotti's team selection with interest. Given the proximity of games in the calendar, the manager was always likely to make changes to his line-up, although at least one will be enforced due to injury while others might hand opportunities to some players to make statement.

Mason Holgate will miss the game after picking up an injury at Tottenham. The defender took a heavy knock to his shin in a challenge with Giovani lo Celso in the 1-0 defeat and will sit out against Saints.

That will almost certainly see Yerry Mina start for the first time since the resumption of the season alongside Michael Keane.

Ancelotti announced presser that Theo Walcott is available following an abdominal operation and that Djibril Sidibé is fit enough to start which could mean an entirely different right flank for this one if both players are named in the line-up.

Meanwhile, Alex Iwobi will be assessed for a minor hamstring problem and Fabian Delph continues to work on an individualised programme to get him closer to being ready to play.

In contrast to Everton's showing last time out, Southampton have looked purposeful in three of their last four matches. Though they succumbed 2-0 at home to Arsenal on 25th June, they beat Norwich City handily 3-0 a few days before Everton themselves won at Carrow Road and also won comfortably at Watford.

In their last game they successfully held off deposed champions Manchester City and record a 1-0 win that lifted them to within a point of the Blues coming into this fixture.

In Danny Ings they have one of the division's most in-form strikers with 18 goals and he has led their revival in fortunes under Ralph Hassenhüttl since the 9-0 drubbing at the hands of Leicester in October that had many wondering if the Austrian's days at St Mary's were numbered.

Aside from the European picture, simple league placing could be hugely important to Everton given that each position is worth around £2m in merit payments. So, while they won't be able to bridge the gap to either Spurs or Burnley above them with a win in this game, they can at least keep in touch with the clubs above them in the hope of leap-frogging some of them before the end of the season.

Kick-off: 6pm, Thursday 9 July 2020
Referee: Lee Mason
VAR: Andy Madley
Last Time:Everton 2-1 Southampton

Predicted Line-up: Pickford, Sidibé, Keane, Mina, Digne, Gomes, Davies, Gordon, Walcott, Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin

 

Reader Comments (154)

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Colin Glassar
1 Posted 08/07/2020 at 18:15:09
Can't we just cancel the rest of the season?
Tony Everan
2 Posted 08/07/2020 at 18:41:49
Yerry is back just at the right time. I will have a cheeky fiver on him nodding in the first goal at big odds.

Carlo is diplomatic in his pressers, but reading between the lines it sounds like he read the riot act to some of our midfielders after Tottenham. I am expecting a reaction.

Steve Ferns
3 Posted 08/07/2020 at 18:45:02
Big blow for me. It's the likes of the saints game where we will need him most. A team we can and should beat, but are capable of beating us. They will press is high up the pitch and the ability of Holgate to be calm on the ball and pick his pass is key to beating the press and cutting through Saints.

We lose a lot in building attacks through losing Holgate. Keane can pass, but only if he has time and space and when under pressure he makes mistakes. Mina is better than Keane, but I'd rather have Holgate.

Ray Smith
4 Posted 08/07/2020 at 18:57:45
Does anybody know if the match is being televised?
Brian Williams
5 Posted 08/07/2020 at 19:01:59
Ray, I believe they've decided not to televise it in order for Evertonians to have a rest from punishment.

Unless SF knows better.

Steve Ferns
6 Posted 08/07/2020 at 19:02:01
Ray, It's on Amazon Prime. You need a subscription. So is the Sheffield Utd game. Wolves and Villa are on Sky Sports. Unsure if either will be available on Pick, the free to air channel. The Bournemouth game is yet to be announced, but expect it to be on Sky as Part of the normal Last day programme.

Edit: the Wolves game is definitely on Sky Sports Pick. It's a 12 noon kick-off, this Sunday.

Ray Smith
7 Posted 08/07/2020 at 19:13:53
Thanks Steve, means a trip to the son-in-law's.
Jim Bennings
8 Posted 08/07/2020 at 19:14:21
It's a shame we can't get some of that Jesus juice that Jürgen's boys across the park sup.

Never get an injury and never look tired.

Mike Gaynes
9 Posted 08/07/2020 at 19:17:09
Rock on, Yerry. Make Tony's bet a good one.
Robert Tressell
10 Posted 08/07/2020 at 19:21:08
The Mina + Keane partnership never looks quite right. But we are really short of players now. I guess we resume conceding possession, keeping it tight and hopefully pinching a goal. Is kean worth a shot ahead of DCL? Probably not. But would love him to get a decent amount of minutes.
Danny ONeill
11 Posted 08/07/2020 at 19:47:37
I know what you mean Jim. Genuinely no "bitter blue" in me here, but they are either incredibly lucky or their training and preparation is absolutely teed to perfection. There's probably a bit of both in that but their ability to avoid serious or lengthy injury to their core 14 players over the past 2 years is incredible.
Kunal Desai
12 Posted 08/07/2020 at 20:34:21
Sheffield Utd and Burnley winning today inevitably means we will finish the season in the bottom half. Embarrassing.
Patrick McFarlane
13 Posted 08/07/2020 at 20:37:51
Kunai #12,

Yes it is extremely embarrassing, but not as embarrassing as it may have been if Duncan hadn't have stopped the rot at Christmas time.

Steve Ferns
14 Posted 08/07/2020 at 20:38:03
There's no way we can get 7th now mate. The players will probably be wearing their flip flops on the pitch tomorrow night.
Colin Glassar
15 Posted 08/07/2020 at 20:41:08
Look at how the RS kids play with swagger and no fear. Ours play like they've got lead in their boots and look like rabbits caught in the headlights! It's all about mentality and ours is shite from top to bottom.
Paul Tran
16 Posted 08/07/2020 at 20:44:10
Colin, one of the things they talk about with everyone they buy and nurture is character. And when we get the cheque book out, it's one of our blind spots.
Danny ONeill
17 Posted 08/07/2020 at 20:46:54
Exactly Colin, mentality, aggression and desire. Ability alone doesn't cut it. Just as only having aggression and desire alone wouldn't. But to be a winner, you need all the ingredients. Most of our players have talent, but don't have winner mentality.
Patrick McFarlane
18 Posted 08/07/2020 at 20:48:56
Aw no not another thread euligusing the other lot and how they do stuff I'm avoiding them on an Everton themed website whilst they are playing but I might as well turn on five live and listen to the beeb sycophants. Everton have done majorly bad business in the last few years, nothing whatsoever to do with the other lot.
Danny ONeill
19 Posted 08/07/2020 at 20:50:28
I think we've just pulled this one back onto how we should be doing it and what we're doing wrong Patrick!!!
Kunal Desai
20 Posted 08/07/2020 at 20:51:11
True Patrick I agree. The blame firmly at the board for not sacking Silva much sooner, combined with poor recruitment of players last summer and prior windows.
Steve Ferns
21 Posted 08/07/2020 at 20:51:36
Danny, but our kids won the PL2 twice in the last three seasons and five of them won the U20 World Cup, and if I remember correctly, we did the double one of the seasons. They had a winning mentality until they get to the first team.
Colin Glassar
22 Posted 08/07/2020 at 20:52:44
It's painful I know, Patrick, but until we we start to learn our lesson we will be stuck in mediocrity forever.
Bill Griffiths
23 Posted 08/07/2020 at 21:02:44
Ray, Steve, though you normally need a subscription I'm sure I read somewhere that they had to make it available for people to watch free. Not sure how you would do that.
Derek Knox
24 Posted 08/07/2020 at 21:04:21
Colin, hate to say this, but when they are getting paid immoral amounts, and are on long-term contracts, they know they can have a few off-days, or just put in a lacklustre display and get away with it!

A lot to be said about instilling fear into the players, but they would be on the phone to their agents as quick as you could say "CRAP!"

Brent Stephens
25 Posted 08/07/2020 at 21:09:32
Bill. Sign up to Amazon Prime to watch the game free BUT cancel subscription within 30 days (else it's £7 odd / month you're signing up to). When you sign up, it tells you exactly where to go to cancel the subscription.
Danny ONeill
26 Posted 08/07/2020 at 21:51:36
Fair point Steve. And one I agree with in terms of our senior players. For too long we have had serial losers and accepters of mediocracy such as Jagielka and Baines dominating the senior changing room. Now, I know that last one may not be popular, but Baines was too nice and happy to go with the flow. As in any walk of life, when a young graduate makes the step up, most will be under the spell and show respect to the senior staff until they find their feet.

Unfortunately for our young potentials, they walk into a room of senior players who accepted and preached that "good enough" was taking a knife to a gunfight or being plucky. It didn't matter if we lost to the top 6 because it wasn't expected to win, so if we did it was a bonus. Listen to some of Jagielka's interviews and the arm wrapping around Barkley.

I agree with you Steve, but it is the mentality throughout the club that has to change otherwise hopeful and talented youngsters with a desire to win will have their wings clipped when then step up into a culture of negativity and losing mentality.

Steve Ferns
27 Posted 08/07/2020 at 22:12:49
Danny, not sure I agree with you on Baines. One thing I didn't like though was how he got bullied out of the 2010 World Cup squad for being homesick and that kopite Stephen Warnock went instead. He shouldn't have let that happen.
Jerome Shields
28 Posted 08/07/2020 at 22:23:47
Wishing Mason a speedy recovery. At least Mina looks the part.
Danny ONeill
29 Posted 08/07/2020 at 22:24:45
To be clear Steve (as we're broadly agreeing I think!), I'm talking about the mentality not the ability. Baines is arguably the best English left back of his generation. But his mentality wasn't quite there from the start hence we played Lescott there for the first season after we bought him as he adjusted stepping up from Wigan to Everton.

And to your point about the homesick thing; didn't he come into football late because he was a home boy? And didn't he occasionally get bullied out of taking the odd penalty when it was his responsibility?

Great player but didn't have the mentality to be a winner and not a leader. We have too many of those.

Brian Wilkinson
30 Posted 08/07/2020 at 22:41:45
Here is the information in regards to Amazon Prime I copied across here.

Amazon are a streaming only service and if you're already a Prime member, you have access to all of their live games through their app and online.

If not, their Premier League coverage will be available to stream for free on the Amazon Prime website and app.

You don't have to pay for a subscription or do a trial to watch the games.

Brent Stephens
31 Posted 08/07/2020 at 22:47:26
Brian, thanks for correcting my info – you don't need to sign up to Prime.
Max Murphy
32 Posted 08/07/2020 at 22:48:54
It's the same old story. We see a glimmer of light at the end of this very long tunnel, only to see it overwhelmed and extinguished by yet another dire performance that surpasses previous worst performances, which we never thought was possible.

Everton FC are in a malaise that cannot be solved by new mangers and players. Their mind-set is firmly embedded in their psyche. A psyche of inevitable defeat against teams from the top six away from home.

Our club needs an Exorcism. And that can only be achieved by relegation and clearing out everything and everyone from the board to ball-boys.

We are going nowhere, and we have to accept a radical change and overhaul to our club to survive. Otherwise... RIP Everton.

Hugh Jenkins
33 Posted 08/07/2020 at 22:58:45
Reading earlier comments, it is becoming clear what we need.
Carlo as our coach.
David Moyes as DoF.
After all, the one thing you could be fairly certain of with a player Moyes picked, was that they would be:-
Dilligent
Hard-working
Willing to track back.
Fit in personality-wise into the squad
etc. etc.

Or were they?

Answers on a postcard to:-
Failed Attempts
Everton FC Co Ltd
Goodison Park
Liverpool
L4

Brian Wilkinson
34 Posted 08/07/2020 at 23:06:51
I have Prime myself, Brent, but thought it was free to watch as well so thought I would have a look in case it was on Pick but came across that from Prime.
Brian Wilkinson
35 Posted 08/07/2020 at 23:11:31
Hugh you have it spot on with Moyes mate in regards to players playing the full 90 mins, not often you saw a Moyes signing blowing from his backside after 60 Mins, some before that even.

We need to find out what he was doing in training to build the players up to that fitness.

Jamie Crowley
36 Posted 08/07/2020 at 23:18:08
Honestly based upon the Spurs game, we have zero business being in Europe next season.

But, glutton for punishment that I am, I just went down the fixture list and standings rabbit hole.

If we win our remaining games and finish on 59 points, I'd bet we'll qualify for Europe.

Will that happen? Probably not. Everton just let you down. Honestly, what's going to happen is we'll win tomorrow, start to get our hopes up again, and then lay a fart against Wolves.

Or if the Everton gods are cruel, we'll actually beat Wolves, hope will really return, and we'll lose to Shefield.

But, at this moment I believe 7th is still on.

I honestly think Europe would kill us next season. We're not deep enough, and we're not ready. It'll piss Carlo off as we'll miss a goal he set - European qualification. But we need a midfielder, and we need more time under Carlo. If we extend ourselves too far, too quickly, I think it'll bite us in the ass in the long run.

Kieran Kinsella
37 Posted 08/07/2020 at 23:21:23
Paul Tran 16,

They've talked a lot about the “right personalities” since RM arrived and Brands is always saying. We seem to have a squad of similar personality types but the problem is the shared trait is anxiety/depression. Gomes, Keane and Bernard have all come out publicly and discussed their battles with periods of anxiety and depression.

I realize mental health is a serious issue and laud them for their honesty. But in competitive sport, is that a trait you want in their squad?

Case in point: Years ago, an NFL psychologist did a study with England players after Euro 96. He said Southgate would not have been drafted in the NFL due to his anxious/negative outlook and he specifically said it was no surprise Southgate missed the penalty at Euro 96.

Jamie Crowley
38 Posted 08/07/2020 at 23:23:48
I seriously want to see this lineup as well:

Coleman Keane Mina Digne
Richarlison Davies Baningime Gordon
Kean Calvert-Lewin

Pick the keeper. I want Virginia, it'll never happen, Pickford's pissed me off so much lately, I can't write his name in the lineup.

Jamie Crowley
39 Posted 08/07/2020 at 23:25:13
Kieran -

I realize mental health is a serious issue and laud them for their honesty. But in competitive sport, is that a trait you want in their squad?

No. In fact, you want the polar opposite.

Kieran Kinsella
40 Posted 08/07/2020 at 23:30:06
Jamie

I know I'm just being diplomatic because, though I have the same issues myself, I'm anxious someone will call me heartless and totally twist my comments to portray me as a mental health cynic.

John Boon
41 Posted 08/07/2020 at 23:33:19
Colin (1) yes, you are so right. I have tried to put forward my point of view regarding Season 2019-20. It ended in March due to an unpredictable virus that attacked the whole world. Just like World Wars 1 and 2.

This farcical attempt to finish the season defies common sense. The remaining games should never have been played. Games played behind closed doors to an audience of none and an enthusiasm level of ZERO is purely for financial reasons.

I consider myself a fanatical Evertonian who has supported for eons. I really just don't care what happens for the next five games. They are friendlies that may give some insight into who may be playing for Everton next season. I just don't care who is good bad or indifferent. Next season is a new dawn and I can only hope for the best. Just like the sincere supporters of every team in the country.

I am a chess player who hates watching games of chess. This idiotic finale to a season is a meaningless chess game. As much as I appreciate the appalling disaster of Covid-19, it seems that attempts to finish a fiasco of a season are unwarranted. For an endless number of reasons, I consider the football season as over in March.

Liverpool should have been given their title in March so that their over-the-top gloating, rioting and general lack of class would have been over by March. I still long for a new season, with new players and a whole new perspective. I just don't care about last season. It finished in March.

Jamie Crowley
42 Posted 08/07/2020 at 23:40:48
Kieran -

Nowadays people really, really walk on eggshells. You say 'diplomatic', I say overly careful choosing their words for fear the "PC Language Police" will rear their ugly heads and crucify anyone who doesn't agree with their definition of what should and shouldn't be said.

For me, if I'm running any sports team / franchise, I want, top to bottom, team players who are mentally rock solid.

That's not saying anything disparaging about anyone with mental health shortcomings or issues. And those pros who have overcome any mental health issues need to be held up as examples of what can be achieved.

But, for me, I'd want every player to be mentally rock solid. I think that's a human condition that, in professional sport, provides a better likelihood of success.

That's my opinion. If anyone disagrees with that, fine. If they find anything I've said offensive or not compassionate, I'd reject that notion, recognizing their right to have their own opinion.

Cheers.

Steve Ferns
43 Posted 08/07/2020 at 23:54:21
I don't think we need a team of Mentally strong in the Roy Keane mould. Too many of them and you don't have a team. You need Indians to go with your chiefs.

One of the best sports documentaries I ever saw was on British cycling and featured Vicky Pendleton. Remember this is a double Olympic champion sprinter and nine time world champion. One of our best ever athletes. She's a pure winner.

However, Vicky was clearly an emotional mess. On the documentary it was clear to see she only got into cycling as she had a pushy father who lived vicariously through her. She seemed to be almost bullied by him and almost bullied by the likes of Shane Sutton. But in terms of sport, it worked. They broke her down and built her back up again many times.

You can't break down a guy like Keane. Not roy anyway. You can someone like Michael. And clearly in the case of Pendleton, you can turn a girl who is overly sensitive and often in tears into a fierce winner.

I do think we need one Roy Keane though. Preferably with pace.

Link to the Vicky Pendleton documentary and for the avoidance of doubt, the tears I refer to are whilst she is at the top and she is not rock solid mentally after she starts winning. She's a mess off the bike (seemingly) at all times.

Patrick McFarlane
44 Posted 08/07/2020 at 23:54:48
I might be mis-remembering but I don't recall too many 90 minute performances from any Everton team under any manager in the last couple of decades.

More often than not a turgid first half was followed by an improved showing in the second or a late charge to sneak the points. Sometimes, the Blues took a healthy half time lead and on the occasions that they held that lead to take the points they didn't often break their necks to put their opponents to the sword.

The constant references to David Moyes and his methods I have read today, bring me close to tears as he's been gone for seven years and it is chastening that despite the passing of time and the huge outlay on players - we have to use the ginger one as our touchstone.

Whomever broke the mirror or ran over the black cat please apologise to the football Gods and help us to move forward, please!

Steve Ferns
45 Posted 08/07/2020 at 00:00:59
Mike Gaynes
46 Posted 09/07/2020 at 00:15:09
Jamie, is it undiplomatic (regarding mental health) if I say that your call for Beni to start is Looney Tunes? Or is Bonkers better?
Danny ONeill
47 Posted 09/07/2020 at 00:37:51
Don't have to be Roy Keane, Steve, and my point is not about being mentally strong, it's about having a winning mentality. They are different things.

I'm watching a beautiful interview between Ian Snodin and Howard Kendall. Howard's comment on when he went to scout the then Liverpool reserve Kevin Sheedy with Colin Harvey and their discussion afterwards:

"I'm concerned about your work rate"

Sheedy:

"That's because I'm a first-team player Mr Kendall, put me in your first team"

Belief and arrogance. But winning mentality.

Kieran Kinsella
48 Posted 09/07/2020 at 01:06:16
Steve

The Victoria Pendleton comparison is a poor one because she's involved in individual pursuits. Having 10 teammates around you, with the fear of letting them down, adds a different dimension.

If it's common knowledge, in the public domain, that your teammates are angst-ridden and mentally weak too, then where do you turn?

I suspect there's a safety in numbers as it were. We all cower together, we all blend in, we all avoid responsibility, we all fail, the manager gets sacked and we carry on with the next guy in charge.

Patrick McFarlane
49 Posted 09/07/2020 at 01:30:25
It would seem that Carlo has a similar view to many of us - as he wants to bring in players with a better mentality and he wants to improve the mentality of those already here.

Summer Signings

The article is in the Guardian and the Mail has a similar item.

Kieran Kinsella
50 Posted 09/07/2020 at 01:33:13
Patrick,

Oscar the Grouch from Sesame Street has a better mentality from this shower.

Patrick McFarlane
51 Posted 09/07/2020 at 01:36:38
From Gwladys Street to Sesame Street, that seems very appropriate somehow mind you there's a few Grouches in the Street End.
Jamie Crowley
52 Posted 09/07/2020 at 02:29:49
Mike -

You can say either.

And your response is hilarious and absolute gold.

Rather than undiplomatic, your stock just increased in my estimation.

Cheers.

Jamie Crowley
53 Posted 09/07/2020 at 02:36:58
Steve Ferns -

You need Indians to go with your chiefs.

I couldn't agree more.

You're a smart man. I know you are already aware of this, but just to be crystal clear - if you ever come State-side do not use that phraseology.

You will be drawn and quartered by the totalitarian PC state in America.

You've been warned. ;0)

Mike Gaynes
54 Posted 09/07/2020 at 02:40:37
My pleasure, Jamie.
David Ellis
55 Posted 09/07/2020 at 04:38:56
Jamie, I don't think you're right about mental health at all. In fact "winners" are often mentally fragile – the ones that need help from professionals in that field.

However, my bigger beef is that your comments add to the stigma over mental issues and the stigma is one of the obstacles of dealing with what is a terrible modern-day scourge that ruins lives of those that suffer as well as their loved ones. It's okay to have an ACL injury. It's okay to have mental health issues. It doesn't mean the person is somehow "not a winner".

On the wider point I do agree we need a winning mentality. A big part of this simply comes from winning. This is why the "other lot"'s youngsters are confident – they are playing in a confident winning team. It's why promoted clubs often start seasons well... they have been used to winning and then gradually start to get used to losing.

I would be interested in any academic study done on this – anecdotal evidence doesn't really get us anywhere (despite my use of it above!).

Albert Perkins
56 Posted 09/07/2020 at 05:17:23
Talking about mental health. I believe the play about Dixie Dean highlights his struggle with anxiety and depression. Bit of a winner anyway.
Eddie Dunn
57 Posted 09/07/2020 at 07:20:42
There is a simple reason for our mediocrity – we don't have enough competition for places. Dominic up top looks at the bench and sees a rookie in Kean. Sigurdsson looks at the bench and sees... an extra goalie. Carlo is having to squeeze square pegs into round holes. Iwobi on the right one game, then on the left in the next one.

You can have a stinker and still be on the teamsheet next week.

The better clubs have so much competition for places that guys know that a lazy performance will get them the hook during the game and a seat on the bench next time.

Watching Man City last night you could see that, if one of them missed a pass or didn't make the run, they were twitching wondering if Pep would hook them for another.

I won't compare us to the other lot, as I am sick of them.
Name another club who would have put up with Schniederlin for so long and still played him. Then think of the other lads who saw him cheat a living and they also think (subconsciously) that they are in the comfort zone.

It's simply all too easy. Put in half a shift, look busy and you are in again next week.

Eddie Dunn
58 Posted 09/07/2020 at 07:33:22
Jamie Crowley – on Pickford. The boss is never going to play Virginia unless Pickford is injured. Even if Carlo wanted to drop him, imagine how Pickford's value would fall.

This is one of the reasons why others are persevered with. The season is a dead rubber, there is little to lose or gain. He will play Walcott, Sigurdsson and Delph when fit, as it helps keep the illusion that they are worth something.

We sure have a lot of deadwood to clear out.

Jim Bennings
59 Posted 09/07/2020 at 07:55:20
If things go as expected the this should be a comfortable night for Southampton, unless we turn up and cause a shock.
Rob Baker
60 Posted 09/07/2020 at 08:02:04
We have 2 hopes of Europa, Bob Hope and No Hope (Can't remember which comedian said that).

How many more flaccid end-of-season performances can we stomach? I'm sick of the garbage we serve up. When was the last time we gave a good stuffing to the opposition?

Too many snowflakes in our squad. I would love just one Roy Keane on our side. We have no winners in the team. Carlo is the only winner.

Kim Vivian
61 Posted 09/07/2020 at 08:07:30
Linking to Steve's and others comments re mental health pressures - As Steve may recall I am a pretty keen cycling enthusiast and take an interest of the psychology training that goes into working with pro cyclists and teams. It is interesting to note, and I think I am right in saying this, that there is a higher incidence of suicide in pro cycling, particularly after the peak of their careers, than any other sport.
I haven't rewatched Steves V Pendleton link but the following article is from cycling weekly in March of this year, and makes an interesting read. Much of it can be related to football and football teams. Note particularly the bit about 'Tiger Woods Syndrome' from which we seem to suffer in reverse when it comes to the so called big six.

"The peloton itself is handy at the art of mind games. Using the press to psyche out rivals or propagate their own myths ahead of a race, with carefully selected words, isn't uncommon.

Spindler calls it the "Tiger Woods syndrome".

"Look at Peter Sagan. He's won bike races before he has even started at times. The person doesn't matter – it's the context that matters" he adds."

You may have to disable ad-blocker on the site to read it.
https://www.cyclingnews.com/features/racing-thoughts-professional-cycling-and-mental-health/

Mal van Schaick
62 Posted 09/07/2020 at 08:10:48
According to form we will be watching ‘ serial let downs ‘!

Southampton will be on a high after beating city, but this game is a test for the hierarchy to stamp their authority on the players who want to stay next season. We'll know if they do with a rampant performance and 3 or 4 - 0 home win, or else we'll rollover and get beat with a woeful performance. If that happens I hope that we will be having a clear out and rebuild, in order that owner and manager can achieve what we all want, being top four regularly and challenging to win the league, and being in the Champions league with a great squad.

Barry McNally
63 Posted 09/07/2020 at 08:56:21
Everton should be fresher than Southampton with 7 days rest whereas Saints ran their socks off against City 4 days ago.
Bobby Mallon
64 Posted 09/07/2020 at 09:05:34
It's not about being incredibly lucky concerning injuries. It's about doing your homework and buying players who are not injury prone in the first place. It's not rocket science. John stones for instance is always injured why would we buy him. It makes no sense, I really believe Brands gets back handers to take injury prone players from top clubs.
Joe McMahon
65 Posted 09/07/2020 at 09:07:58
Ings is fast and agile. oh dear.
Hugh Jenkins
66 Posted 09/07/2020 at 09:11:02
Rob (60) I can't recall who originally coined the phrase, but, as I remember it was in the early days of "Thatcherism" and the full version was:_

The USA has Johnny Cash, Bob Hope and Stevie Wonder. The UK has no Cash, no Hope, no bloody Wonder.

Bobby Mallon
67 Posted 09/07/2020 at 09:17:00
Jamie Crowley @38, I'm with you I want stek in goal tonight. Pickford for me causes our defence to be nervous because they don't have a clue what he's going to do next. I really think 4 players need to be brought in that's a keeper CB and Two midfielders. One midfielder needs to be a Fernandes type player and one a Gana Gueye type player. Also young hungry and not injury prone
Sam Hoare
68 Posted 09/07/2020 at 09:23:46
Tough to choose a team tonight, especially given the lack of midfield!

Pickford
Sidibe Keane Mina Digne
Richarlison Gomes Davies Gordon
DCL Kean

I'd much prefer to give Gomes a rest but Sigurdsson was so terrible against Spurs and Beningame must be looking very mediocre in training if he's not even had a few minutes since the restart. Never expected to say this but I wish Delph were fit!

Mark Burton
69 Posted 09/07/2020 at 09:40:44
The players know that if we qualify for any European competion the club would attact a better group of induviduals under Carlo and more than half of this lot of merceneries would be out the door. Do not expect anything different from the Tottenham game
Alan Rodgers
70 Posted 09/07/2020 at 09:46:01
I don't think you need to sign up to Amazon Prime. Just create an account and log in, don't give any card details. You do however need a smart tv. I managed it ok and I'm not very techy.
Clive Rogers
71 Posted 09/07/2020 at 09:52:00
There has got to be changes in MF, but I would stick with the back four with Mina in for Mason. Sidibé is an accident waiting to happen. He can't defend and is caught out of position several times each game. He would cost us the game.
Jonathan Tasker
72 Posted 09/07/2020 at 10:10:04
This is like a nightmare
Just when you think the season's over this lot play again
I hate them do much I'd actually forgotten they were playing again today
Please make it stop

Ps how's the fictional new ground coming along ?

Rennie Smith
73 Posted 09/07/2020 at 10:26:12
Carlo has said Sidibe isn't fit, so I'd expect him to only play a small part and see Seamus on again. A reminder to all those saying he's finished, he was MOTM against the RS. Alright, he's not bombing on as much these days, but he's a significantly better defender than Sidibe, and that's what he's there to do isn't it?

Expect another snoozefest as the Saints have just as much to play for as we have.

Mick Conalty
74 Posted 09/07/2020 at 10:26:49
Looks like the only way we are going
To get rid of the shite out of the club.
Is to make Garry Neville manager.
🤪🤔🤔🤪
Joe McMahon
75 Posted 09/07/2020 at 10:40:40
Jonathan, I still have this feeling (and have done for a while) that the fictional new ground you refer to will be a revamped Goodison with a 42k capacity, which will be unveiled in 7 years time.
Tony Everan
76 Posted 09/07/2020 at 10:45:38
Barry 63

Enjoyed that one, it has slipped through the humour net

Sam Hoare
77 Posted 09/07/2020 at 10:52:06
For those (like me) who like a stat I saw a list today of the players in teams outside traditional top 6 (RS, City, Man U, Arsenal, Spurs, Chelsea) who create the most chances from open play (so no set pieces). Only including those who've created more than 25 chances.

Of the 20 names on the list there is not a single Everton player. Which is appalling really and demonstrates our lack of creativity. The likes of Sigurdsson, Gomes, Bernard, Iwobi, Richarlison and Calvert-Lewin should all be hoping to feature in or around that list.

Top of the list was Jack Grealish who creates 2.17 chances per match, followed by Buendia on 2.08 and then Adama Traore on 1.63. Our old Deulofeu comes in 4th at 1.58 and tonight opponents have Nathan Redmond at 18th with 1.2.

Wolves have 3 in the top 20 and Leicester have 5. Not a single Everton player!

Christopher Timmins
78 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:07:22
Hoping for a big performance after Monday's complete lack of effort. It's been a hard watch for such a long time and we deserve a break.

Gordon and Walcott have to start as we simply could not go with the same personnel as Monday night. If Siggy and Iwobi are in the starting eleven then we need to start worrying!

John Kavanagh
79 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:07:59
Kim #61. Let's all hope Sigurdsson is on his bike in a few weeks time, joining a huge Peloton of epic Everton fails like Bolasie, Walcott, Delph, Sandro, Tosun etc.
Danny ONeill
80 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:08:39
Valid point Bobby, some players are more injury prone than others and research will tell you that. But other factors play a part, including luck. Gomez didn't snap his ankle because of being injury prone, it was sheer bad luck in a freak sequence of events following a nasty shithouse tackle. I appreciate many will point out he is injury prone, which I don't dispute, but that injury was bad luck. Also, training and conditioning will play a part, which is why I think some clubs suffer more than others. Several factors influence injury, but I do agree with your view.

On a positive, I feel totally relaxed about this evening. The negative to that positive is that I feel totally relaxed about an Everton fixture as I have no expectation! It has been sapped out of me.

Rennie Smith
81 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:18:36
I know stats can be twisted to get the desired result, but that one is pretty telling Sam@77!
Most of the time it's not about ability, more on the decision making. How many times have we seen that final ball literally come to nothing? Walcott is the worst for that, bags of talent but so bloody frustrating when he's in a good position and plays a nothing ball to no one.
Hugh Jenkins
82 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:20:13
Sam (77) - I also like a stat. or two.

That particular one is clearly an "eye opener".

We all know from the evidence of our own eyes that Everton needs a playmaker in midfield. That list/stat. just underlines by how much we are currently lagging.

Dave Williams
83 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:20:51
Sam#68 I'd go with the same as you. We need a young and hungry team which will at least be competitive for 90 minutes. It's no good fielding the likes of Siggy or Iwobi if they are going to be less than committed in tackles and Sid might give us a bit more pace and aggression than Seamus who deserves a rest.
Your midfield four is basically three lads who will bust their guts and Gomes who may just blossom surrounded by them. Moise will work hard up front and your team looks full of aggression to me.
There are too many who should not be allowed to wear the shirt and with Europe unrealistic Carlo needs to see if a few of the younger lads are going to be an asset next season. Adeniran should be on the bench and given some time before the end of the season and quite why he won't play Beni is beyond me. He might not be up to it but Carlo clearly things Siggy is, which doesn't say a lot for his judgement in that regard!
Sam Hoare
84 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:27:54
Rennie/Hugh/Dave; yes very worrying. I had some hopes for Iwobi who can spot a forward pass well. Against Norwich he created 3 chances and 4 successful dribbles whilst also getting through alot of good defensive work.

I hoped he'd turned the corner! But sadly he was poor against Leicester and woeful against Spurs (possibly his injury?).

I still hold a glimmer of hope that he could become a higher level playmaker but that glimmer is fading!

As for the rest, I'd happily sell Sigurdsson and Bernard. And Gomes if i'm being honest though he at least retains the ball well. Unlike Iwobi they are all on 100k or over and none of them is bringing enough to the team creatively.

Brian Harrison
85 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:32:35
I think we need to stop changing managers every 2/3 years, that brings no consistency and usually means every time we appoint a new manager its all change in personnel and style.

Whether people like Ancelotti or not, we need to let him build a squad that can compete at the highest level. His history tells us he can do this, but he will need backing in the transfer windows. Just like our policy with players the same policy has applied when we look for a new manager, I cant ever remember appointing a serial winner as we have done this time. We usually appoint managers who have done well in the Championship if appointing a British manager ie Kendall and Moyes. Or we try and appoint a foreign manager who has acheived limited success in Martinez, Koeman or Silva, or in the case of Allardyce Moshiri was so worried about relegation he appointed Allardyce whose claim to fame was he had never had a team relegated.

However good managers are,it takes time to build a team able to compete at the very top end of the league, even Guardiola who took over a squad who had already won the league is still struggling to get this City side into a Champions league final, though he might put that right this season.

We have known for some time that the majority of this squad are just not good enough to compete at the top end of the table. This group have had 3/4 managers in that time and other than the first season under Martinez we have finished outside the top 6. So it comes as no surprise to me that even under Ancelotti these under performing players are still under performing, and until Ancelotti can bring in his players I think its a bit hard to critisize him for our predicament. I just want this season to finish and lets see who we get in the transfer window.

Hugh Jenkins
86 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:33:23
Sam (68), Dave (83), I too like the look of that team.

There is youth and flair on either wing and they should be able to create chances for the front two.

Colin Glassar
87 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:38:31
Sam 77, those stats don't surprise me one iota. I don't know if it's orders they're following or they are just shitbags who are scared to have a go.

We have two very good fullbacks who can go down the touch line and then, for some unfathomed reason, stop and pass the ball back or sideways.

We have MF players who's first option is always to play safe, retain the ball at any cost, never look for an incisive pass etc

Our two forwards are very good, imo, but DCL has gone off the boil and Richarlison seems more interested in getting fouls (although he is fouled a lot) rather than carrying on attacking. And with our nonexistent MF it must be frustrating for them.

I'm determined not to watch Everton again this season (I probably will) as their lack of effort, fight and skill do my head in.

Jason Li
88 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:45:16
Thinking about Iwobe recently, I think he suits a team that's always on the move. Eg. overlapping fully back, midfielders running into diagonal positions.

Iwobe likes a fast one or two touch wall pass type environment, where everything is very fluid.

That's why playing with Sigurdsson doesn't work, as he won't run beyond Iwobe to build play.

So Iwobe is a very good player, but needs mobile players around him to connect dots and move the ball fluidly.

If the midfield is static, he won't hit it long, and just play a safe pass. My observations so far this season when he's played well, and when he has less effect on moving the ball up the pitch.

Michael O'Malley
89 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:55:10
Southampton have got a very decent away record and a lot of pace on the break so let's hope we perform better than the shitfest we witnessed at Spurs,that would put you off football for life
Daniel A Johnson
90 Posted 09/07/2020 at 11:56:27
When Richarlison, and Holgate go which they will.

We will be genuinely doomed.

Fear not though we have Marcel Brands in charge of recruitment to find replacements, who is responisble for:

Iwobi (so unfit he cant last 45min)
Delph (Arrogant sick note)
Mina (Glass Man)
Gbamin (Everton career prob over after 2 matches)
Kean (the lockdown party planner)

With rumours of a Lindgard/Jones swap for Richarlison/Holgate and rumours of Digne & Pickford being targeted its like were road kill and people are picking at our carcass. Plus for all Ancelottis hyperbole hes only here for the monthly wages lets not kid ourselves.

As you can tell I'm really enthused for the coming 20/21 season.

The new Kit looks good though!

Danny ONeill
91 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:01:12
Phew, glad you ended on a positive there Daniel, you almost picked me up for tonight's match!!
Tom Bowers
92 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:04:17
No matter what starting eleven Carlo put's out I have given up on Everton putting in an impressive performance home or away against any club. With a few games left and the new season around the corner the rest of the year looks bleak without any real movement in the transfer market.

Sure, the defence is looking a little more solid since the restart but offensively the are poor and after Monday's let down how can one be optimistic about today or the remaining games now that a Euro place is out of the question.

Barry McNally
93 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:04:22
Tony, 76 - tough audience!!
Jamie Crowley
94 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:16:23
Colin -

We have MF players who's first option is always to play safe, retain the ball at any cost, never look for an incisive pass etc.

That's not entirely true. We have one midfielder, young and talented, who continually drives the ball forward and is always looking for an incisive pass.

His name is Tom Davies.

When he attempts an incisive pass and it doesn't come off, we pounce on him and shred him to bits.

Maybe we should stop doing that? Food for thought.

Michael Lynch
95 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:21:37
Sadly, it doesn't really matter whether we win or lose tonight - personally, I've seen enough now to know that if we go into next season with this squad, we're doomed to mid-table mediocrity at best, and a scramble to 40 points at worst.

Yet another overhaul needed, but I'm not sure who should be retained. When Gomes came into the team, I said on here that he was one of the classiest players I'd seen in a blue shirt in ages. I still stand by that, but he is so one-paced that he's becoming a liability. Even so, he's the only player in our midfield that I would retain - with some decent players alongside him, he'll be fine.

Up front, I've been really pleased with DCL at times - he's a decent footballer, great hold up play, strong, runs forever, decent ball control - but I'm starting to fear that he simply hasn't got the X factor to make it in the PL. He too often takes the negative, easy route, and seems to have no bottle in one on ones, or when he's running at the defence. Richarlison needs someone better alongside him.

In the wide positions, Iwobi was a very expensive mistake, and Bernard is looking less and less able with each game. Walcott isn't worth talking about.

So, at a minimum, we need a top class striker, an entire new midfield (except Gomes), a couple of new wide players, a replacement at some point for the ageing Coleman, and replacements for Richarlison and Digne if a team with a plan comes in for them. Oh, and Pickford can fuck off too.

Apart from that, everything's looking good.

Tony Everan
96 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:22:15
Sam a shocking statistic, a terrible indictment of our dysfunctional midfield.

On top of this was the stats for tackles put in in the last match by our central midfield. Gomes 1 Sigurdsson 0 [zero]. This was in a match that was largely played out in the middle 1/3rd of the pitch as well.

Our playmaker Andre Gomes played just three passes forward into Spurs' final third over the course of the game. Gomes is negated without the ball winning , tackling Gana or enforcer type central mid complimenting his attributes. Gomes May still come good for us next season.

So as it stands at this point in time we are not creating anything and not tackling anything. If we are serious about mounting a challenge on the top six, Carlo has got to get two midfielders in who can completely turn these dire stats around. Over to you Marcel

Laurie Hartley
97 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:37:36
I think we will win if Carlo Ancelotti goes with Sam Hoares team @ 68. It looks like the right mix of characters to me.

Up the Blues!!!

Fran Mitchell
98 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:39:09
Life on furlough is pretty dull at the best of times. The football coming back has provided respite in terms of having made 105 minutes of the day particularly dull making the rest of the day seem like a day at Disney in comparison.
Derek Knox
99 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:40:17
Definitely a change in attitude and mentality required tonight, anything resembling that powder puff shambles at Spurs and we're not in for a decent result or performance.

Let's hope in music song terms it's Blue Heaven, and not When the Saints etc, or Ings aint what they used to be! :-)

Danny ONeill
100 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:40:49
Broadly concur Tony. I'd keep Gomes as I think with better players around him and in front of him, he can come good. Not making excuses and there are quality / tactical issues, however as a midfielder, if you look up and there isn't an option, your instinct is to retain possession. So rather than play the non-league or Graham Taylor percentage game, you go sideways or backwards to keep the ball. Liverpool play a very direct game, Manchester City a patient one. But when either go forward, it is with purpose and because there are options available. To do otherwise will mostly just give the ball back to the opposition. Midfield creativity is undoubtedly where we need most surgery, but we also need to think about what options we give that midfield, be that personnel or be that tactics and how we play.
Colin Glassar
101 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:42:04
Jamie, I admire your defence of Tom Davies. I honestly don't understand what you see in him as I see a weak, slow, unsure of himself player.

He gets knocked off the ball easily, he runs (head down) into cul-de-sacs, he twists and turns to no avail, he doesn't score goals, he doesn't create goals. I'm at a loss to see what he offers but I admire your faith in him.

Tony Abrahams
102 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:46:38
Iwobi is simply not a wide player, and this was proven, at least it was to me anyway, during the Norwich game when he played his only decent half of football in that second half, when he was pushed inside.

We have got a fictional new ground, a revamped Goodison, a shocking midfield, and a season that we can't wait to finish. Life was so much simpler during the lockdown, because at least I was only bored then!

Tony Everan
103 Posted 09/07/2020 at 12:46:44
Yes Laurie, Sams team there @68 would give us something to watch. We may leak a goal or two but there is two or three goals for us. Entertainment, remember that?

We have tried the Siggy central mid solution and it just doesn't work. Sticking Davies in there is a better bet. I would like to get another look at Kean starting a game too, this is an ideal one. I hope Carlo now sees that changes things.

Jamie Crowley
104 Posted 09/07/2020 at 13:13:30
Regarding this complete rebuild narrative floating around, I think that's wide of the mark.

I said a few games ago, I actually believe we are one really, really talented midfielder away from competing for Europe and possibly higher.

It's easy to become despondent after a listless, lifeless game like we've seen at Spurs. But prior to that, we were indeed 4th in the form table I believe since Big Dunc took the reigns?

This team simply need a stud midfielder and some time to let some of our younger kids develop just that little bit more.

Midfield is what is holding us back. You put a world class midfielder next to Davies or Gomes, and watch how much better they perform.

Carlo has done a fabulous job sorting out the defensive side. He's working back to front, and the front honestly isn't all that bad presently.

Midfield, midfield, midfield. Stop buying these "maybe men" for 25 million. Sell Pickford for serious money allowing us to take that windfall and buy the best midfielder available on the market.

I might be wrong, but I think the understandable negativity after Spurs has resulted in some pretty dramatic negativity. It's a team game - not every player will poo rainbows. Some of them might be poor. But they're "good enough" for a role in a very winning, Top 4 side. You can pick holes in Leicester, Chelsea, Man U, Wolves, etc. just as you can with Everton.

Midfield. Say it again, midfield. We're not as dire or miles off as many are stating.

Kevin Prytherch
105 Posted 09/07/2020 at 13:19:17
Jamie - fully agree. Before Gbamin was injured again, I would have said the main area of focus has to be wide midfield, however I would now say 1 central midfielder - like you suggested - and at least 1 wide player. The rest of the squad is good enough to challenge for Europe (although I think we should also replace Pickford).
Tony Everan
106 Posted 09/07/2020 at 13:29:14

Some general info for watching tonight game;

Fans do not need a Prime Video subscription to watch live as retail giant Amazon is allowing everyone to watch for free. It will also be streamed on Twitch.

The Prime Video app is available on most Smart TVs, tablets, mobile phones and games consoles. Alternatively, supporters can visit the Amazon website and click 'Prime Video' to watch direct in their browser.

Dave Abrahams
107 Posted 09/07/2020 at 13:38:12
Jamie (104), yes it was very depressing watching that pitiful performance versus Spurs and could be the reason there are lots of comments looking on the downside of the way the club is going.

You correct two or three good signings, in the right positions, and we wouldn't appear to be so poor, however when you look at the bench, there isn't a lot of strength in depth there to provide the necessary back up needed to get us challenging the top teams, it is going to be a long haul, I feel, to get us to that position.

Nevertheless I take a lot of heart from your post Jamie, gimmie one of your guns Jamie and I'll join the fight!!!

Kim Vivian
108 Posted 09/07/2020 at 14:12:32
Sam(77) - if you added all our players together we'd probably still be outside the top 20.
Kevin Molloy
109 Posted 09/07/2020 at 14:19:42
Jamie
the problem is we cannot attract the sort of player who is in the £40-60m bracket. They point blank will not come, unless there is a reason, such as they tried and failed at another club and are in good form again (see Siggy). I'm not sure I can go through that hell again. If Carlo is as good sa we think he's going to have to sign players like Howard did, players who you go (who?' about, but who are good heading for great.
Danny ONeill
110 Posted 09/07/2020 at 14:20:49
Great perspective Jamie. I think a lot, myself included, were so demoralised after Monday's no show (cue Barry's hidden joke!).
Jamie Crowley
111 Posted 09/07/2020 at 14:23:53
Haha. Dave, you'll need to visit the Land of the Second Amendment for me to arm you, friend.

I take heart you agree with me. For whatever reason I remember my last few posts you were not on the same page as myself. As a sort of TW moral compass that you are, I take heart!

Bill Watson
112 Posted 09/07/2020 at 14:30:11
Jamie. #104

I agree, as many would, that we're possibly just a midfielder, or two, away from being a half decent side.ment

However, if we sold Pickford most of that fee would have to be used to bring in a replacement who may not be any better. There certainly wouldn't be enough left over, if anything, to fund new midfielders!

Dave Abrahams
113 Posted 09/07/2020 at 14:32:58
Jamie (111), I'm not sure that I disagree with many of your posts Jamie, I certainly always like your spirit and positivity.
Jamie Crowley
114 Posted 09/07/2020 at 14:34:15
Kevin -

Jamie
the problem is we cannot attract the sort of player who is in the £40-60m bracket.

I'd disagree with that. I think Carlo could indeed get someone (who? dunno) to come.

The issue with that is it is, without question, a massive gamble.

Do you get someone in that has that drive, never-say-die attitude who can change the fortunes of the squad? Or do you get the guy who is on big wages and starts to coast his way to retirement, a la Alexi Sanchez?

It's hit a home run or a busted flush my way admittedly. And that's the scary thing.

Were it me, and it's not and God knows I've been wrong hundreds of times, I'd sell Pickford and buy a fantastic, squad-changing midfielder. Qualify for Europe. use the 2020-2021 season to develop youngsters to fill gaps. It really is bad business to purchase players like Gylfi (we had Barkley, no improvement) and Iwobe (too expensive for the return). Save on wages with 2-3 genuine players, fill in the gaps with inexpensive, hopefully homegrown prospects like Davies, DCL, Holgate, this Brainwaithe (sp?) kid, and a few others that people like Steve Ferns and Brent Stephens would be aware of.

Freaking Football Manager silliness in an honest moment. If it were that easy! I'm probably talking out of my backside.

Jamie Crowley
115 Posted 09/07/2020 at 14:37:28
Bill -

I've done an about-face on Jordan.

I do not believe we'd be any better or worse off with an inexpensive, serviceable keeper. Virginia, Stek (or comparable Stek) with a worldie midfielder would see us be a better side IMO.

It's sell to improve. You have to give up an asset to move forward as a team. It's a tough trade / transaction to make, but I think we'd be better off.

Jordan would command a pretty penny. He's probably the highest value player that we would miss the least in my opinion.

Kim Vivian
116 Posted 09/07/2020 at 14:44:21
Short of being threatened with the sack - which isn't possible because of contracts - or being locked in a room with an angry Duncan, I can't see what will get the team motivated tonight with nothing to play for besides a bit of pride (hmmmm!).

We ain't going down and the merit payments for finishing a couple of league positions higher probably make no difference to the players, so I expect a pretty dull affair. I think Soton my make a go of it though just to rub a few noses in the dirt after so many people up and down the country had them written off earlier in the season.

I shall be watching as usual and hope for a couple of ours of excitement, but I won't be holding my breath. I can see maybe 1-1 tonight, and doom and gloom on here tomorrow.

Let me be wrong!

Jay Harris
117 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:00:05
Kim,
I am similarly concerned but for different reasons.

Southampton played City off the park the other day and their away form is much better than their home form.

They are now playing with a confidence and determination that is sadly lacking in our mob.

Its the first time in 60 years that I havent looked forward to a game V Southampton one of the few teams we have battered in our history.

Danny Broderick
118 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:03:47
It's saying something that I fear Southampton's midfield will be too strong for ours...
John McFarlane Snr
119 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:08:33
Hi Jamie [104] I, and I believe many others on this site, have known that we have been for some time, [and are currently] not good enough. I think that we require a few more than the 'one really, really talented midfielder' you are suggesting, to attain and maintain, the level to compete with the clubs contesting a European position.

Where I differ from some, and I appreciate that we all have our own way of looking at, and addressing the problem, is the fact that I don't single individual players out for criticism. I view performances and results as a team effort, that's not to say that I'm happy with the situation. I revert to the start of this post by saying again, that we as a team, are simply not good enough.

I would like to stress that It's not my intention to be provocative or insulting, to those who hold different views. I respect the right of everyone to express their opinion, and I expect to be afforded the same consideration.

Hi Dave [107] I don't know who got the short end of the straw the other night, you who had to witness the game, or myself who had to listen to it, which I always regard as watching through someone else's eyes. I think that we have to live with the fact that we are simply not good enough. I understand the frustration of fans, and as I said in my post to Jamie [104], we all deal with disappointment and frustration in our own particular way, there's simply no right or wrong way.

Robert Williams
120 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:09:16
Jamie Crawley 115. Totally agree with you, cash-in now before he makes more howlers. I thought I had seen a big young keeper, with one of the Italian clubs that we were interested in, that's the one for Everton and I believe Ancellotti knows the guy. He'd come at half the price we would get for Pickford, as I understand.
Jay Harris
121 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:21:28
Sir John,
Good to see your posts, hope you are keeping safe and well..

I totally agree it is a team game and team responsibility including the manager, coaches and the board.

The problem is there are cogs within that machine that are performing consistently and cogs within that machine that have not been performing consistently. Therefore it is a little unfair to bash the whole team including those putting a performance in rather than the culpable individuals.

Having said that I agree with you it would be wrong to boo players or hassle them at a game which I abhor but I do think they are up for debate on ToffeeWeb.

Mike Doyle
122 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:23:00
Fellow posters.
Without wishing to generalise (I'll now do just that!) it strikes me that our USA 🇺🇸 posters seem to be more upbeat / positive than the rest of us.
Admittedly they have the advantage of living in a country who's President has conquered Coronavirus ( I believe it's called the Chinese Virus across the pond ) apparently.
But let's follow their example. Let me kick off with a positive... Delph remains injured and not available.
who is next?
Rob Halligan
123 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:29:24
Jay # 117. So Southampton played City off the park the other day did they, well you must have been watching a different game to me because city battered Southampton, and did everything but score.

The stats show Southampton had 26% possession to city's 74%.
Southampton had 8 shots (4 on target) while city had 26 shots (6 on target).
Southampton had 2 corners compared to city's 13.
MOTM was Southamptons goalkeeper Alex McCarthy.

For the majority of the game city were camped in or around the Southampton penalty area, and if city had needed to win that game they would have done with ease. I was really surprised how they never scored?

Jay Wood
[BRZ]

124 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:35:43
Today's game will be no easy task.

I have a lot of respect for the Southampton manager, Ralph Hasenhüttl.

Any manager would have been more than spooked after the 9-0 home tanking they received from Leicester back in October, but he held his nerve and has comfortably steered Saints away from the relegation zone.

Indeed, in the reverse fixture at Leicester Saints won 2-1.

As others have mentioned, they have an exceptional away record. In fact, if we retained our home record and swapped out our away form with that of the Saints we would be 11 points better off with 55 points which would put us alongside United in 5th. Our goal difference would also be hugely improved from -8 to +8 - a 16 goal positive swing.

That is yet another that Carlo needs to improve on. Our form on the road.

Play as we did against Spurs and we will lose. Simple.

Mike Gaynes
125 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:36:20
Wow, waking up to all this cheeriness... and thinking about going back to bed.
Brian Williams
126 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:36:53
Agree with Rob Soton did NOT play City off the park. Quite the opposite.
It was like the Alamo.
Jay Harris
127 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:39:02
Rob,
I guess I watched with a different pair of glasses then.

For me Southampton won most of the 50/50s and were generally hungrier and more determined than City.

You are right City had more possession but couldnt do anything with it because Southampton closed them down so quickly.

At the end of the day as we know stats count for nothing its results that count.

Ray Roche
128 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:39:56
Rob@123

That's pretty much my recollection Rob, Saints were battered and if not for some last ditch defending would have been another 0-9...or 1-9!

John McFarlane Snr
129 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:45:59
Hi Jay [121] you are absolutely right in saying that criticising on a web site is a more civilised way of expressing displeasure than booing at the match, however as I stated in my post it isn't my my style to single players out, and I'm not condemning those who do. As I also said, in my post to Dave [107] there is no right or wrong way to vent our frustrations, I should have made it clear that I meant on this site.

On a lighter note, I believe that you're the front runner in the race for the chairman of the S.A.S. the "Snowflake Appreciation Society"

Rob Halligan
130 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:47:20
Southampton were gifted their goal after 16 minutes by city, even if it was well taken by Adams, and therefore had something to hang on to, so yes, I agree they were more determined in the tackles and 50/50 challenges. A bit like our game against Leicester, we had something to hang on to, but no way, Jay, did Southampton play city off the park because they never. Had city equalised they would have gone onto win that game.
Tom Bowers
131 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:47:41
Saints rode their luck in that game against City and got away with it.
They are a jammy bunch like Brighton and Burnley who sometimes get a poxy win against the big clubs but generally have relied a lot on Ings this season to get points from their games.
In the City game they got a goal mainly because City came out way to casual in the early stages and held on.
Jerome Shields
132 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:48:49
I thought that Ancelotti looked really pissed off in his press conference, and was exercising a measure of restraint in his answers. It was poor player performance especially in midfield that undermined his carefully planned tactics in the last game.

I would say that he has concentrated a lot on midfield tactics in the meantime.

Mike Gaynes
133 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:51:56
Jerome, tactics and tackles both I hope.
Danny ONeill
134 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:52:19
John (119), you're absolutely right, it's a team game and without wanting to make an obvious statement, the best teams are exactly that, not necessarily a collection of the most talented 11 individuals known to football. Great teams are not always populated with the best 11 players on the planet in every position. They have the right blend of youth, experience, skill, desire, commitment and fitness amongst other factors. But not every player has to have all of those traits. Like you, in my humble opinion.
Christy Ring
135 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:54:13
I just hope Siggy and Iwobi are at best on the bench tonight, and hopefully Baningime will get a run. Against Spurs as Neville said, Sigurdsson pulled out of challenges, and so did Iwobi, so why play someone who won't put in a shift??
Tegs R.
136 Posted 09/07/2020 at 15:58:27
Y'know, I feel quite lethargic about this season right now
Rob Halligan
137 Posted 09/07/2020 at 16:00:26
Christy, I agree, that's why I said yesterday (might have been on this thread but can't be bothered checking) would it be a good idea to play Digne wide left and play Baines at left back? At least Digne will get up and down the line and put challenges in, and will also get back to cover Baines, and we know we can trust Bainesy probably 99% of the time.
Mike Gaynes
138 Posted 09/07/2020 at 16:03:32
I like that idea, Rob. Of course, I like the idea of any lineup with Bainesy in it.
John Pierce
139 Posted 09/07/2020 at 16:15:01
Lots of things to look at for tonight. We have great record at home against the Saints, in my life time I can remember 1or2 wins. They're a bit like West ham!
Nothing can be worse that Monday, it is right up there with games were nothing happened.

Some side bar chat, sell Pickford to find a midfielder that Carlo can persuade? I think that is the creative and necessary thinking which might shift the needle.
There's decent data to say Pickford is well...erm average and the eye test has people ducking for cover.
I'd even take a veteran like Foster at Watford for a season or two. A reliable keeper. Ancellotti hasn't come here for a project, he's come to win, that will be evident in the transfer strategy. My wild guess is, FFP might be loosened or dispensed with and we might have one last hurrah with money. If it's not he will be off.

I'd love to see the side freshen up and youth given its head. It won't happen but I'd like it to. If we see Gomes and Sigurdsson in the midfield again many TV's might find need replacing.

Tony Everan
140 Posted 09/07/2020 at 16:20:14
We may see a formation change tonight to the 4-2-3-1 to try to shake things up a bit. We have to play to our strengths with the players we currently have. I think Carlo will persist with Siggy and play him at his no10.

Pickford
Seamus Keane Mina Digne
Davies Gomes
Richie Sigurdsson Gordon
DCL

Jay Harris
141 Posted 09/07/2020 at 16:23:48
Sir John,
You gave me my first chuckle of the week what with this pandemic spreading like wildfire in Florida and Everton providing even more depression I needed that..

I always took SAS to mean Steven and Stevens on our right flank. LOL

And boy how I wished we had them now.

Mike Corcoran
142 Posted 09/07/2020 at 16:35:38
Just play the players that always look like they are putting in 100%. Can't include Sig, Iwobi, Sidibe in that. Like the idea of getting Baines in be it LB, LM, RM or CM as he will pull his tripe out. Back 5 same as usual, Kean and DCL up front, Rich left, Gordon right, Baines centre with Davies. I can't believe Baines would not be better there than the standard set by the others tried so far.
Frank Sheppard
143 Posted 09/07/2020 at 16:39:50
Think we should change name of this website to “Negative Web”.
Jay Wood
[BRZ]

144 Posted 09/07/2020 at 16:52:40
Given the events of this week, I don't think it's merely coincidental that currently on the Everton site home page the lead item is, of course, today's match.

The link displays a very prominent close up photo of the Dixie Dean statue.

Dixie Photo

Joe McMahon
145 Posted 09/07/2020 at 16:52:57
Frank only after Nil Satis is replaced.
Mike Gaynes
146 Posted 09/07/2020 at 16:58:02
It cracks me up that the considerable "sell-Pickford" contingent here almost never has a replacement to suggest. And on the rare occasions they do, as John P does at #139, it's always somebody like Foster or Forster or Henderson or Pope or even Fumbles Fabianski (NOOOOOO!!!!) , as if the position of goalkeeper doesn't exist outside the British Isles.

No. No. No.

If you're gonna replace Pickford (who is not just "average" and still young for a keeper), then replace him with someone who is gonna elevate us and take us to the top, and there are hugely gifted young keepers all over Europe who could fit the bill and cost way less than an English keeper like Henderson.

My choices would be Onana at Ajax and the young Pole Dragowski, both of whom are big and quick and would fulfill the Everton fan base's obsession for a "keeper who commands his area" (an overrated characteristic in my estimation)... or, if you want to spend a little more money, Simon from Bilbao.

It really is OK to look across the water for a keeper. Really. It is.

Graham Blakeman
147 Posted 09/07/2020 at 16:59:17
Fellow supporters. Looking ahead to this evening. I have devised a game of Everton Bingo for us all to play along at home, whilst enjoying the game. Tick them all off for a full house.

1 A Pickford cock up
2 A midfielder to sprint 20 yards
3 A midfielder to do a crunching tackle
4 A midfielder to create a chance for our forward players
5 A midfielder to score a goal from open play
6 A midfielder to win the ball and put us on the attack
7 A throw in straight to the opposition
8 Lucas Digne to concede a free kick near the penalty
9 Another free kick conceded near the penalty area, only in the last 3 minutes
10 Seamus Coleman to get in a great position only to produce a disappointing cross
11 Iwobi to find a blue shirt, preferably intending to do so.
12 A direct free kick smashed straight into the wall.
13 An Everton to player to slip or fall over whilst taking part in a promising move
14 Andrea Gomes to kick the ball straight out of play
15 A player getting within 10 yards of DCL, getting on the ball after he wins another header.

Just a bit of fun to Cheer us all up. Up the the Toffee's! COYB

Brent Stephens
148 Posted 09/07/2020 at 17:01:18
At least Gordon starts
Rob Halligan
149 Posted 09/07/2020 at 17:01:41
Here's the Blues line-up v Southampton: Pickford, Coleman (c), Mina, Keane, Digne, Iwobi, Gomes, Davies, Gordon, Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin.

Subs: Stekelenburg, Baines, Sigurdsson, Walcott, Sidibe, Bernard, Kean, Branthwaite, Baningime.

Sam Hoare
150 Posted 09/07/2020 at 17:04:59
Mike@146, I'd take Dragowski please. Looks a very promising keeper indeed.
Mike Gaynes
151 Posted 09/07/2020 at 17:14:35
Rob, dammit, Carlo didn't take your Baines suggestion. And I'm kinda surprised not to see Sidibe if he's fully fit.

Sam, yeah, he'd be a big hit at Goodison with the big Viking beard and the attitude. I saw him last year for Empoli in a game where Atalanta took about 50 shots at him, like skeet shooters at a clay pigeon. He stopped everything. Clean sheet. Total command.

Mike Doyle
152 Posted 09/07/2020 at 17:14:41
Graham #147] can you extend point 10.
Leave you answer as 10A. For 10B Can I suggest. Seamus to get into a great position before changing his mind and making an easy pass back or inside instead.
John Kavanagh
153 Posted 09/07/2020 at 17:37:18
I think that's about the best side we could put out tonight, although I worry about Iwobi. Could have given Beni a run out instead. Anyway, Carlo can now threaten our midfielders with the ultimate embarrassment of being replaced by Walcott if they fail to perform.
Liam Blakeman
154 Posted 09/07/2020 at 17:58:39
Davies and Iwobi shouldn't be near the first team. Must be some youngsters who are better.

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