Wolverhampton Wanderers vs Everton

Saturday, 11 July, 2020 103comments  |  Jump to last
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André Gomes will undergo a late fitness test on the knock to the ankle he sustained against Southampton

Everton travel to sixth-place Wolves tomorrow knowing that while European football isn't mathematically impossible, their hopes are effectively over and, as such, the focus now is very much on next season.

The Blues will start the day seven points off their opponents, who occupy seventh place, and the goal for Carlo Ancelotti must be to try to claw back Premier League merit payment revenue by finishing as high as possible in the table while also, perhaps, giving some opportunities for more fringe players to impress.

Playing Wolves pits Everton against a club who only came up from the Championship two seasons ago but who have patiently built an impressive side founded on a solid recruitment strategy based around a clearly-identified style of play and overseen by an increasingly admired coach.

Everton, meanwhile, have been mired in chaos and inconsistency for years and yet the two teams' contrasting fortunes make for sobering contemplation as Ancelotti and his men attempt to lift themselves up from two hugely disappointing performances against Tottenham and Southampton.

Of course, if you were looking for a man with a proven track record of success to provide not only stability but a plan for engineering a way back to relative success, you wouldn't look much further than Ancelotti. Which is, again, why Evertonian eyes are now trained forward toward the upcoming transfer window and 2020-21 beyond.

The formality of the last four games of the disrupted and increasingly meaningless 2019-20 campaign must be dealt with first but as Everton gear up for what will be their third match in six days, it's expected that the manager will make more changes to his line-up than on Thursday.

In order to counteract the kind of slick passing football that was almost their undoing against the Saints, Ancelotti could start with the five-man back line that he used in the second half last time out, one that was effective keeping their opponents at arms length even if it came at the expense of any attacking threat.

André Gomes, who came off before half-time against Southampton with a knock to the ankle, and Mason Holgate, who missed the game completely with a shin complaint, are both doubts, while Fabian Delph is still trying to rediscover his own fitness.

Djibril Sidibé might start and there is a chance that Ancelotti will give Dominic Calvert-Lewin a rest and give Moise Kean a rare start but the boss doesn't have a slew of options open to him.

Wolves, meanwhile, look likely to have Adama Traore available despite the pacy winger dislocating his shoulder in the defeat to Sheffield United a few days ago. Traore has been used effectively off the bench as a second-half weapon by Nuno Espirito Santo and that could be his brief again this weekend.

Victory for Everton wouldn't be enough to lift them back into the top half but it would set them up nicely to attain that goal over the remaining three matches. In the meantime, Ancelotti's assessment of his team continues ahead of the next phase of reconstructing the team under Marcel Brands.

Kick-off: 12pm, Sunday 12 July, 2020
Referee: Anthony Taylor
VAR: Andre Marriner
Last Time: Wolverhampton Wanderers 2 - 2 Everton

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

 

Reader Comments (103)

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Kieran Kinsella
1 Posted 11/07/2020 at 21:59:49
What a goal to attain to Lyndon: Top ten. I guess it was getting boring finishing 8th each year under successive unpopular managers. Now we have a moderately popular manager and we “aim” for less.
Martin Mason
2 Posted 11/07/2020 at 22:00:30
I can't see anything but a defeat or at best a draw in a game that we play as well as we can.
Tony Hill
3 Posted 11/07/2020 at 22:02:37
You just have to look at that team to see where the problems lie. A draw would indeed be a good result.
Alan Rodgers
4 Posted 11/07/2020 at 22:13:24
Looking up at Spurs is okay, I guess; looking up at Burnley is much less okay. To think, most of our fans constantly disparage Burnley and would die off at the thought of Dyche as manager. And yet we aspire to catch them.

We can't know what a full season of Ancelotti would have brought us but the same losing mindset is on show whenever we play a team above us. How does he solve that?

Not expecting anything from the Wolves game.

Mike Gaynes
5 Posted 11/07/2020 at 22:21:58
Kieran, considering we were 18th when Silva was sacked, finishing top-half would be considered a positive achievement.

This is Carlo's club now, but make no mistake, it's still Silva's season. Carlo is just cleaning up the old mess at this point.

But as Lyndon says, the contrast with Wolves -- as well as Sheffield United and Leicester -- is striking. I will be mightily disappointed if Carlo doesn't turn out a side next season that plays, and achieves, like those three "smaller" clubs.

Tony Twist
6 Posted 11/07/2020 at 22:34:47
It's time for Carlo to earn his substantial salary. It is also time for his training staff to earn their money also. Is Carlo a cut above our previous managers? I am not sure, he still plays Sigurdsson as often as possible. No more excuses, look at Sheffield United, Burnley, Southampton, they haven't spent a fortune on their teams.

One of the worst things we did was advertise that we had moved on from 'plucky Everton' and that we had money. We have a team filled with footballers who think they are better than this club, it is Brands's failing, getting players without heart.

The next three purchases need to be two central midfielders who would walk over their own grandmothers for an Everton win and a right-winger who is clever and lightning-fast. We have Bernard talking about panic attacks, Keane talking about his depression, Gomes has talked about his depression... warriors required, please!

Wins are also required because, if they don't come then Richarlison will start signing up to Man Utd's official Twitter account and we all know what that means.

My team would be:

Pickford (unfortunately no alternative),
Coleman, Keane, Mina,
Sidibé, Davies, Gordon, Holgate, Digne,
Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin.

Best of luck, Blues.

Kieran Kinsella
7 Posted 11/07/2020 at 22:36:47
Mike,

I wasn't so much having a go at Carlo – more the club's series of missteps.

Kieran Kinsella
8 Posted 11/07/2020 at 22:49:19
Alan

Another thing about Burnley was they were in Europe this year — albeit briefly — as are Wolves. Some on here have been making the case it would be good if we missed Europe as it would hamper our Premier League form. Yet here we have two smaller, less expensively assembled clubs proving the opposite.

Hugh Jenkins
9 Posted 11/07/2020 at 22:52:59
Alan (4) - Looking up at nobody – is OK – if, as we believe, we are Big Club with Big Ambitions!.

As someone said on another fanzine earlier today – despite our abject surrender in the last 30 years – we are STILL the fourth most successful club in the Premier League.

Spurs are a good cup side – but pretenders for anything else. God forbid we should "look up to them".

I hope and pray that Carlo and Moshri (Usmanov) can take this club back to where it rightly belongs – with the elite – not the also-rans.

Bear in mind that, when the Premier League started, we held two more league titles than Man Utd did.

Brian Wilkinson
10 Posted 11/07/2020 at 22:59:56
This season is finished as far as I am concerned. We need to take a look at a couple of fringe players. We look knackered so cannot see anything but a defeat tomorrow, unless we rotate and make a few changes.

Same starting 11 and Goodnight Vienna.

John Pierce
11 Posted 11/07/2020 at 23:06:43
If he's doesn't freshen both the team and the tactics up, we will get walloped.
Jim Bennings
12 Posted 11/07/2020 at 23:07:17
If we play like we have in the last two games, then tomorrow we are going to get smashed.

That's not being defeatist it's just a true perspective of the utter gash that our players have served up lately.

I think they need to turn in a bit of a performance tomorrow at least and have a bit of bloody self-pride in their own individual displays because, for a team of international players, they look a friggin' embarrassment more often than not, the inability to pass and move and attack like a Premier League team should.

Charles McCann
13 Posted 11/07/2020 at 23:10:50
I would like to see Carlo ditch playing two strikers up front as it clearly isn't working. We need five in midfield, especially since we continue to play Sigurdsson, Gomes and Davies none of whom are blessed with pace. Different maybe if you still had a Gana Gueye type player full of pace and energy.

I like Ancelotti but this stubbornness is annoying me. Even give Baningime or Adeniran a chance they couldn't do any worse!

I feel sorry for Coleman playing with the crap he has in front of him on the right wing. Iwobi and Sidibé offer little and Walcott who has pace and some skill sadly is let down badly by his decision making when on the ball.

And those long throws of Digne never work. Throw the ball to someone's feet and create something, ffs. How about even taking a quick free-kick or corner? Something different.

The same predictable crap each match since we've started back. Not many positives recently but Anthony Gordon looks likely to become a great player.

Carl Manning
14 Posted 11/07/2020 at 23:37:07
Simple truth is we are playing a better side tomorrow, 6/7 of their players would walk into our side.

We historically are a big club but we haven't been a big club for decades! It's time to accept we have fallen behind many other, better run clubs! This summer, we will have Newcastle (with a wealth that makes Man City look poor) start to make waves in the transfer market also.

This also isn't the first time Burnley will have finished ahead of us, or Wolves! So I would suggest that I see the loons are already out having digs at Carlo and demanding this and that etc... nuts! He's not perfect, you only have to think back to Istanbul and what those over the road did to his Milan to see that.

But he hasn't signed a single player. If he plays Sigurdsson, then he must see that he is the best available option. When a 2-time Champions League winning midfielder and 3-time Champions League winning manager, doesn't play Baningime there or Holgate, there is a reason. he would know a midfielder better than us!

Jay Harris
15 Posted 11/07/2020 at 00:01:21
Tony #6.

That is exactly the team I would put out tomorrow.

The unfortunate thing is we are now only playing for pride (as Europe is beyond us barring a miracle) and we know there's not much of that in an Everton shirt these days.

A wing, a hope and a prayer that we get a result but I don't have that much faith especially if we couldn't even raise our game against a poor Spurs side nor Southampton at home.

Jerome Shields
17 Posted 12/07/2020 at 00:25:39
Mike #5,

"This is Carlo's club now but, make no mistake, it's still Silva's season. Carlo is just cleaning up the old mess at this point. "

This is the best description I have come across which describes the Everton reality. I, like Patrick MacFarlane, think that it will take to Xmas for Ancelotti to make an impression on this Everton team.

Silva would have lost every one of the games since the break with the same players and would have got stuffed by Tottenham.

I think that Ancelotti's tactics and sink or swim selection will mean that all the players will be all ears at his team talk for the match against Wolves.

Everton will have the same defensive formation, but it will be interesting how Ancelotti organises and has coached the midfield for this game. Because of Calvert-Lewin's last performance, I could see Kean being given a start. He has averaged 8 minutes an appearance so far for Everton. Ancelotti has nothing to lose in giving him a run-out.

Don Alexander
18 Posted 12/07/2020 at 01:41:17
I'm amazed at the number of posters who deride the abject football given us by those (him) truly in charge of the staff, mentality and aspirations of our club, when they then go on to constantly criticise the manager, whoever it's been for 30 years, as the sole culprit.

The one human who's always been in a massively responsible position throughout that 30-year period is still there, profiting from the club and us fans.

I know a number of readers are tired of my tirades on this issue but year after year, decade after decade, we've never got close to a good season.

Once we came fourth. Big deal. The result of that exposed us to world-wide ridicule on the basis of our appalling Champions League performance.

Yet many of us still harbour him as a crucial entity, as does Moshiri.

Many have grown bored with my posts on Kenwright but the match against Wolves – Wolves, for Christ's sake – and the broad absence of fans' confidence as expressed above speaks volumes to me.

Who's the common thread folks, for decades?

Nick Swallow
19 Posted 12/07/2020 at 02:00:10
Pickford
Keane Mina Holgate
Baines Coleman
Gordon Sigurdsson Iwobi Digne
Kean Richarlison

Richard Mason
20 Posted 12/07/2020 at 02:16:14
We won't get away with playing 12 players, Nick.
Kieran Kinsella
21 Posted 12/07/2020 at 02:19:00
Don

I know I've teased you before but you're correct about Kenshite. Not so long ago there were dozens of Kenwright bashers but it seems like people have short memories and you're the last one left.

Not to absolve others of mistakes but ultimately everything does go back to Kenshite the root of all evil. Even “Agent Johnson” saw us win the FA Cup.

What have we won since? Nothing. And yet so many love him on here, just as people love Trump. Amazing how people love those who destroy their lives.

Kieran Kinsella
22 Posted 12/07/2020 at 02:36:36
Pontius Pilate came out at Goodison and said,

“I will free one man to be your Owner. Peter Johnson, the so-called Chairman of Everton who gave you the promised silverware. Or Kenshite the crook.”

The crowd in the Gwladys Street End had been stirred up by Bluenoses so they chanted “Kenshite, Kenshite!” And Kenshite was given the club. So Pilate asked the rabble:

“What then for this Peter Johnson?”

A man named Tony Marsh yelled “Crucify him!” Then the Gwladys Street rabble rose in unison and cried “Crucify him! Crucify him!”

And so it came to pass that the bandit Kenshite was left free to rob, steal and cheat while Johnson was taken to the place of the skulls and crucified.

Nick Swallow
23 Posted 12/07/2020 at 02:52:33
Ha ha, try this, Richard:

Pickford
Keane Mina Holgate
Baines
Coleman Gordan Iwobi Digne
Kean Richarlision

We've got to get Baines into this team, far better player than anything else that has been tried in the defensive midfield position.

Jack Convery
24 Posted 12/07/2020 at 03:05:43
My guess is he will pick this team if they are fit
Pickford
SidibéKeane Mina Baines
Walcott Holgate Davies Gordon
Richarlson Kean
Mike Gaynes
25 Posted 12/07/2020 at 04:44:17
Nick and Jack, Holgate is still injured and not likely to be fit for action.
Laurie Hartley
26 Posted 12/07/2020 at 04:51:36
Digne is going to need all the help he can get in this one.

Pickford
Coleman, Keane, Mina, Digne
Sidibé, Gomes, Davies, Gordon
Kean, Richarlison

This won't be a game for faint hearts.

Up the Blues!!!

Derek Knox
27 Posted 12/07/2020 at 04:53:49
Missed the last game due to attending a birthday bash, but apparently I didn't miss much at all, and did myself a favour. I was totally pissed off after the Spurs game, but from all accounts this was worse, if that was at all possible.

Surely it can't be three in a row, but looking at the projected team, I can't see where any inspiration is going to come from. I know playing behind closed doors, is far from ideal, but why can't they inject a bit more pride in to playing for the Club and the shirt?

John Boon
30 Posted 12/07/2020 at 05:08:36
Very Simple. This season finished in March and all the games since are meaningless unless you are candidates for promotion or relegation. Our very small chance to get in the Europa (Substandard) League have evaporated over the last few games.

I refuse to make any judgements on Ancelotti until at least ten games into the new season. I always want Everton to win, but this is just one more useless practice game in order to finish this farcical season.

Mike Gaynes
31 Posted 12/07/2020 at 05:09:52
By the way, it would appear that Sandro Ramirez might not be a complete joke after all. I didn't see the game, but reportedly he was excellent as a sub against Barcelona today for Valladolid. Had a couple of decent late chances for a goal that would have knocked Barca completely out of the title race.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NuyE-slGI8Q

After another complete waste of a season, he had two goals and an assist in the two weeks before play was halted in March.

Mark Burton
32 Posted 12/07/2020 at 05:58:25
The way we have been playing games lately, with no midfield and Richarlison getting his legs kicked to bits as each opposing player has a turn at hacking him, we honestly would be lucky to get a result today.

Everton have been so predictable and easy to get to, losing every 50/50 ball due to lack of commitment, passing backwards and praying for a draw. I really can't see a victory today.

Bill Watson
33 Posted 12/07/2020 at 07:11:33
Tony # 6.

"Is Carlo a cut above our previous managers? I am not sure..."

Are you seriously suggesting Carlo is no better than Marco? They're like day and night and I'm quite sure that if Marco was still here we'd be desperately hoping for a point, today, to stay in touch with Villa.

Dick Fearon
34 Posted 12/07/2020 at 07:16:42
For years we have complained about Everton managers standing in the tech area like Easter Island statues and not showing a shred of enthusiasm or any other emotion.
I don't go along with the idea that the club needs to spend spend spend before Carlo can resume his Mr Wonderful mantle.
I f he is half as good as many on here make him out to be he would at least have whipped this lot of overpaid chancers into line.
As for Carls 'Loons" @14 I won't lower myself to reply.
Jim Bennings
35 Posted 12/07/2020 at 07:25:21
Carlo Ancelotti is clearly on a different level than Silva or Allardyce, his CV will do it's talking.

However the challenge at Everton is something that he will not be used to and it's whether or not we are in a position to actually sign the top class level of players he needs.

Ancelotti has mostly managed Champions League clubs with world class players that simply needed an ego massaging and one or two things fine-tuning.

At Everton the overhaul looks massive, and we have already seen that his motivational skills won't really rub off too much on this bunch.

It's hard to criticize his managerial CV but as I say, this club is in a quite dire situation right now make no mistake about it.

Time will tell whether we can alter that but this is Everton, I won't be holding my breath.

Mark Andersson
36 Posted 12/07/2020 at 08:00:07
Im with the teary Bill bashes...

I wrongly thought that the collective bad vibes in the stands at Goodison were a big part of our teams failings.. no excuses now..

The players clearly have no self pride, will to win or fight..

Carlo will is flogging a dead horse... no one can motivate these shit house players..

Has Brands done a good job so far??? Not that I can see. Richarlison is only here because he followed Silva.. and I can see him and Carlo walking if thing's don't improve.

We blew our chances by wasting money on bad managers and players and in the end you get what you deserve in life..

So fellow blues fans we all must have done somthing terrible in a previous life to be born a blue in this life...

And if your really bad you Will come back as a red shite fan when they have their long over due fall from grace..

See you all in hell... oh wait we are in damnation...

Jonathan Tasker
37 Posted 12/07/2020 at 08:13:50
Great to see I'm not the only one on here continually slaughtering Kenwright.
Nothing will change until Kenwright goes.
No manager will make a difference until Kenwright leaves for good.
Sam Hoare
38 Posted 12/07/2020 at 08:18:29
May have to 352 today in order to have some control of the middle. But then it tends to leave the front two isolated and Richarlison and Calvert-Lewin have shown very little sign of being able to link up since the restart, I wonder how many passes they've completed to each other?

I suspect Carlo will want to be solid first and then hope to nick a goal through set piece or another stroke of Richarlison magic.

I'd like Iwobi to get a shot more centrally. He's been woeful last two games but works hard and has at least a modicum of athleticism.

I'm also gonna give Kean a start as Calvert-Lewin looks a tad jaded and I'm curious to see the young Italian given his first start since his best game against Newcastle.

Pickford
Coleman(or Holgate) Keane Mina
Sidibe Iwobi Davies Gordon Digne
Richarlison Kean

Mike Benjamin
39 Posted 12/07/2020 at 08:33:59
Anybody actually think that if we had stuck with Silva we would be higher in the league? Can't believe that people are already criticising Carlo for getting some kind of stability with the same players. There are obvious weaknesses, especially in CM which needs to be the priority for the start of next season. Make no mistake we would competing with Brighton, Villa, West Ham, Watford and Bournemouth with Silva as Manager.
Andrew Clare
40 Posted 12/07/2020 at 08:35:02
This is an extract from an article in the Guardian. Titled-‘Why Tottenham are stagnating under Mourinho.'
‘Mourinho is from the age of attrition. His leading contemporaries are now working in China, in international football and at Everton. The world has moved on and he has not moved with it.'
We are not regarded very highly are we?
I wonder if it is anything to do with 30 odd years of by and large mediocrity?
Have we been so poor for so long that we can never get back to the top?
Expect another defeat at Wolves.
Jay Evans
41 Posted 12/07/2020 at 08:38:08
I fear for our midfield today. Our lack of legs will be shown up even more than usual against such pacy and intelligent players.

I would snap your hand off for a point but unless we score first I just don't see that happening unfortunately. I hope I'm wrong.

Perhaps Kean from the start for Dominic could mix things up. Our number 9 has looked quite rusty since the restart.

Anyway as usual, full support.
Onward Evertonians. 💙

Mal van Schaick
43 Posted 12/07/2020 at 08:41:23
A win would great, a draw would be okay, but we cannot play for an hour like we did against Southampton or this could be a hiding. Wolves have some good quality players.

Ancelotti doesn't really have lot of choice to improve on what we have from the remainder of the squad. 3-5-2 seems to the best option. Put Digne up as the wing back and bring Baines in. Put Sidibé in the right wingback position with Coleman behind him and hope.

Max Murphy
44 Posted 12/07/2020 at 08:53:34
I cannot understand the discussion on Carlo inheriting Silva's mess, and the excuses for poor form. We've done nothing for 25 years.

The introduction of the Premier League has been a disaster for the club. Everton FC have developed a fear against playing the so-called top six, particularly away from home. That list grows longer each season. We witness other mid-table teams regularly beating top sides away from home, but not Everton.

There was a ray of hope when Duncan took over for a few games but, instead of following their instincts, Everton went down their normal route, and employed a high-profile manager.

If people think Ancelotti will "save" our club, forget it. The problem lies in the very psyche of the club.

Relegation would be the best thing that ever happen to Everton FC. We don't deserve to be in this division. Just watch Wolves destroy us today.

Kevin Prytherch
45 Posted 12/07/2020 at 09:17:00
If we go with 3-5-2, I would like to see Branthwaite and Baningime get a game, possibly Kean as well. We have nothing to lose so we might as well play them.

Branthwaite, Mina and Keane at the back
Davies, Baningime and Gordon in the centre
Kean and either of the front two up top.

I'd also be tempted to give Digne a rest and play Baines. Then either Coleman or Adenerin at right wingback.

I see no point in playing Sidibe unless we are going to sign him, playing him informs us of nothing for next season – which is what we should be looking to focus on now.

Christy Ring
46 Posted 12/07/2020 at 09:19:24
Dick @34,

You can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.

Carlo has to spend, we are so poor in midfield, and our two wide men can't even cross a ball. Our strikers are getting no service whatsoever.

Play Richarlison on the left, and Kean beside Calvert-Lewin, Sidibe ahead of Coleman, because Seamus is getting no protection with the ineffective Iwobi ahead of him.

If Holgate is fit, he has to play in midfield, because we are totally lacking a physical presence there. If he's out, play Adeniran or Baningime because, if he picks Sigurdsson, it's like playing with 10 men.

Eddie Dunn
47 Posted 12/07/2020 at 09:26:56
After watching Richarlison being kicked consistently game on game, and in the last one the impotent Lee Mason watching impassively at our bruised star player, isn't it time for Carlo to address the press and demand more protection for this player?

Other managers have done exactly this to make officials pay more heed to what has been going on. Spurs and Saints players were obviously instructed to leave a bit on him, hoping that he would either shit-out (a la Iwobi) of future tackles or have a fit of the red mist and get sent off.

Come on, Carlo, make a fuss and put pressure on the refs (and the muppets in Stokley Park). I would also like to see Captain Coleman giving his opinion to the officials on this matter.

On the subject of being more vocal, Lampard reflected on his team's thrashing by The Blades mentioned that all the shouting you could hear on the pitch was from Sheffield players. Our lot are far too shy and retiring.

Pat Kelly
48 Posted 12/07/2020 at 09:27:20
The rot has set in and Ancelotti can do nothing about it apart from moving the deckchairs.

There is little sign of life. The players aren't responding, which is a worrying sign. Are they incapable? Not arsed?

Either way, it doesn't bode well if they're not bothered about playing for a new manager. Perhaps they've seen it all before. I know I have.

Carl Manning
49 Posted 12/07/2020 at 09:31:52
dick, Carlo is 5th in the form guide since he took over. I would say that's evidence enough the players have been whipped into some sort of shape and he's made a difference. To expect more is nuts hence the look. Or do you believe our squad is capable of challenging Liverpool, city, United, Chelsea as it is? As for the no need to spend, are you having a laugh? The dogs of war midfield make this bunch look completely inept!
Kunal Desai
50 Posted 12/07/2020 at 09:37:00
Get the season over and done with. We are playing for 11th or 12th place finish. Lower than 11th would also represent our lowest finish in 16 years.
Michael Kenrick
51 Posted 12/07/2020 at 09:42:49
I've seen a number of posters state that our strikers are "feeding on scraps" and "getting no service whatsoever".

I know I'm not supposed to suggest that posters may be incorrect in what they write, for fear of upsetting their tender natures, but that aside, I would respectfully offer up two quintessential moments from the Southampton game that provide some balance and contrast to this oft-repeated assertion.

One moment was a fine ball in from Digne on the left, controlled superbly and lashed into the net by young Richarlison.

The other moment was a fine ball in from Davies on the right, pinpoint accurate for young Calvert-Lewin to lash into the net. Only he didn't. Incredibly, Calvert-Lewin – rather mechanically it must be said – allowed the incoming ball to bounce harmlessly the wrong wy off his thigh!

Nothing wrong with the supply. Just saying.

Mike Kehoe
52 Posted 12/07/2020 at 09:50:52
I can't be arsed with all the Balls Pen Billy conspiracy theories, like he's some evil mastermind dictating dastardly acts from a grassy knoll while stroking an oversized white cat; his back ground is the theatre so I assume he is more naturally inclined to managing musical theatre productions staffed with Luvvies than developing a successful football team on a budget and dealing with brutish footballers. Obviously Sigurdsson has been auditioning for Hairspray for some time.

Can't quite believe people are already having digs at Carlo, ‘if he is that good' or suggesting he is a relic. I felt concerned the culture shock of coming from managing elite pros to the overpriced mismatch assembled by previous [mis]managers would have been too much, but from day one we looked defensively organised and his game management has been a colossal upgrade on anything seen here in decades. Recruitment has been appalling since the days of Moyes and the squad at Carlo's disposal is clearly in need of improvement. I am heartened to see Gordon given a chance and hope beni can break in ahead of a forlorn looking Sigurdsson. As someone said earlier, Carlo is watching these players in training and knows what he wants and he can see a player.

When Silva's reign was crashing and burning to a painfully predictable and hapless end, I thought we would turn to the likes of Howe or Dyche, both of whom would have been improvements on a manager that appeared both clueless, Inflexible and obstinate: I was astonished and delighted the club pulled off a major coup. That for me demonstrates an end to the ‘Everton Way', the patronising ‘plucky' tag is in process of being fucked right off.

Seasons over, these aren't his players, at last we have a manager with a proven track record that knows how to win, but it will take time.

Some people are only happy when they're moaning.

Robert Tressell
53 Posted 12/07/2020 at 09:54:21
This will be another snooze fest. A fairly settled line up has emerged that does a job. It is an eye wateringly boring and frustrating job but it has us 5th in the form table. The only variation might be 532 to match Wolves' formation and accommodate Sidibe who made a difference against Saints. I'd like to see Kean in place of off the pace DCL but its unlikely. Wolves are good, so this will be about stopping them.
Michael O'Malley
54 Posted 12/07/2020 at 09:54:23
Everton on big match revisited from1977 now, the pitches were terrible then
Geoff Williams
55 Posted 12/07/2020 at 10:00:09
If the manager believes that none of the Under 23s, other than Gordon, is worthy to play in this totally inept team then why bother with the U23 setup. Iwobi, Sigurdsson, Bernard and Sidebe have consistently proved that they are not up to the job so the manager must try something different
Christy Ring
56 Posted 12/07/2020 at 10:01:48
Michael @51, Nothing wrong with the supply? We got TWO chances in 90min's against Southampton, and scored one, a great goal by Richarlison, from a superb ball by Digne, at full back, and how many chances did we get against Spurs? The supply is few and far between.
Chris Gould
57 Posted 12/07/2020 at 10:03:20
Can't help but sigh at all the lineups being suggested. Everyone of them looks so uninspiring (no fault of the posters). How do we expect Carlo to make a winning team out of these players? We have one top class player. One who works hard and deserves the chance to continue his progress. Behind those two we have a dreadfully pedestrian midfield which can't tackle or string a pass together, a young winger who only has a handful of top flight games to his name, 3 others who are frustratingly inconsistent, an average defence (Holgate the bright spot), and Jordan Pickford!!
Whatever 11, in whatever formation, appears insipid and depressing on paper and is often worse on screen.
Carlo gets a pass from me (unless we finish bottom half) until he has had an opportunity to at least strengthen our awful midfield.
Jerome Shields
58 Posted 12/07/2020 at 10:11:21
Don#18

To be a Winning Club you have to have a Winning Chairman. This is a football fact. I am hoping that Kenwright is only there to deal with the authorities, but I did get worried last Summer when I suspected him as being involved in transfers.

He does have to go and so does his mates, if Everton are to challenge in all competitions.

Ancelotti can lay the foundation over the next two years, but beyond that other changes must take place, with Kenwright &Co top of the list.

It will be a glaring fact until it happens, and no amount of wishing or optimism will remove it.

Tony Everan
59 Posted 12/07/2020 at 10:35:59
This season is petering out, we are a Formula 1 car that is creaking and noisy with oil dripping out of its bottom.

We have a new driver in Carlo Ancelotti who will be frustrated that his machine is not good enough to get beyond 10th on the starting grid. He cannot wait for the season to end and get his car into the garage.

The best technicians and scientists available (Carlo's training staff and Brands's scouting team ) with solid investment (Mosh) must rebuild the car.

Starting with a new engine.

You don't get regularly into the front rows of the grid in F1 unless you have power under the bonnet, regardless of who's driving.

So back to today's race. The car has a technical fault, the pit crew know it, the driver knows it. Unfortunately there is still 4 laps to go. The driver is doing his best to nurse the ailing car round and finish the race.

Then the serious work can begin in earnest.

Jonathan Tasker
60 Posted 12/07/2020 at 10:47:28
Some of you still can't see Kenwright for what he is.
He has no interest in Everton apart from making money.
Nothing will change until he's gone and he has no plans to go.
Ps any news on the fictional new ground ?
Paul Birmingham
61 Posted 12/07/2020 at 10:53:15
As much a# I want EFC to win every game, today I can't see this happening as today bar a miracle the midfield will be over run.

Let's see but I'll take a draw, the last two games have been the pits, the players must improve.

It will be interesting to see what shape they start with today.

Brian Harrison
62 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:00:30
I think if Holgate is fit Carlo might ditch the 4-4-2 system and go 3-5-2 which will help us win more possession in midfield.
Gary Fenton
63 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:01:48
Everton XI v Wolves: Pickford, Mina, Keane, Baines (c), Digne, Davies, Sigurdsson, Walcott, Gordon, Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin.

Subs: Stekelenburg, Virginia, Iwobi, Sidibe, Bernard, Coleman, Kean, Branthwaite, Baningime.

Richard Mason
64 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:02:55
All I can say is, if you listen to ancelloti in his press conferences or post match interview. This season was to stabilise the club.

He has stated regulary that he will change the system next season with the signing of quality players.

Let's just play out the last few games and see what pre season has in store for Everton.

I would agree with people on here about getting more youth into team now that the Europe ship has sailed

Mike Connolly
65 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:04:21
Jonathan 60#
Ps any news on the fictional new ground ?

There will be plenty of news on the fictional new ground if we get hammered today

Stephen Brown
66 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:05:34
Is Baines right back ?
Martin Mason
67 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:06:03
Jonathan@60. Have you ever thought that it's you who can't see Kenwright for what he actually is.
Tony Hill
68 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:06:38
Good to see Baines. That looks immediately stronger.
Derek Knox
69 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:07:13
Gary @63, if that is the Official Team Sheet, which I have every belief it is, who is going to play at right back?

Is Coleman injured or is it a tactical change to rotate the squad?

Tony Hill
70 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:08:12
I ass7me Baines will play ahead of Digne with Gordon moving inside. Sidibé and Walcott on the right.
Chris Williams
71 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:09:32
Back 3 with Baines on the left?Coleman on the bench.

2 keepers on the bench again

Gary Fenton
72 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:10:06
Derek, took it from the official website
Tony Hill
73 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:10:28
Sorry Sidibé's not playing.
Trevor Peers
74 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:10:34
Our only chance today is to put every man behind the ball and try to defend and hit them on the break with Richarleson.

We are so woeful in midfield due to decades of Everton bad buys and false dawns we can't possibly compete with Wolves, who are particularly strong in that area of the pitch.

Carlo will use his ultra defensive tactics for this one, it will be very painful to watch. Hopefully we don't get humiliated.

Chris Williams
75 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:10:40
Sidibé on the bench too
Barry McNally
76 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:12:00
Bad enough weekends being ruined August to May - I can't take much more off this!
Benjamin Dyke
77 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:13:10
Digne right-back?
Gonna be interesting to see how they line up. Carlo is doing his best to get some life out of the team as we limp towards the end of a strange season. We've deffo improved under him but we'll see more progress next season hopefully.
Clive Rogers
78 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:15:37
We could well get stuffed today with that team. Will have to force myself to watch.
Christy Ring
80 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:17:38
Digne at right full and what does Sigurdsson have to do, to get dropped?
Jonathan Tasker
81 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:18:43
Martin 67
No
Colin Glassar
82 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:20:39
Walcott for Iwobi? Out of the frying pan into the fire? I can't bare watching Everton anymore this season. I've cancelled my sky/bt sports package and will hold off until next season to see if there's any improvement.

Saying that, I will probably watch the game out of sheer masochism and a life long devotion to this fucking club.

Derek Taylor
83 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:21:10
It's just as though Big Sam was still at the helm. Only more expensive
Tony Twist
84 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:21:33
What a team selection, Siggy in the centre what a shock, 4-4-2, jesus. Best of luck blues.
Julian Exshaw
85 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:22:56
To be fair to Carlo, there's not much to choose from. Badly need new faces in August or a major change in attitude from the players.
Eddie Dunn
86 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:23:12
This will either be a revelation or an unmitigated disaster.
Clive Rogers
87 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:25:48
Plenty of Brands' signings on the bench and the injury list. Not many in the team though!
Fraser Auld
88 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:25:51
Back three with baines Mina and Keane - attacking Digne and Walcott wing backs?

Can't think where everyone fits if that's not how we line up.

Steven Jones
89 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:26:10
Gomez and Holgate rested properly - Coleman, Sidibe and Iwobi rested.

Watch Walcott come off and Sidibe on at half time - with Digne moving to right back and Baines left mid.

Could as per Fraser start with Baines in wing back already ... with back three

John Kavanagh
90 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:27:14
Eddie #86. I fear the latter. We are starting with 9 men. I think Walcott's contribution will end when he gets stretchered off after taking the knee.
Steve Ferns
91 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:27:20
A new low with that team selection. I fear the worst. Why name two right backs on the bench but none on the pitch?

Carlo, lay off the wine.

Julian Exshaw
92 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:28:28
Was it Martinez who put Oviedo at RB once? Not the wisest decision ever, that one.
Brian Murray
93 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:29:07
Usual suspects again! Whether we get a good result or not, what the hell can he learn from picking Walcott, Baines, Davies, and Calvert-Lewin. Especially Sigurdsson.

I know managers are fearful for their jobs but you have to be brave sometimes. How will we know if we have superstars under our nose who don't just take the easy option... like Ellis Simms or Beni Baningime, for example?

He's showing total lack of confidence in the squad and the youngsters. Uninspiring to say the least.

Bill Gienapp
94 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:31:05
Eh, I'm not predicting great things, but Wolves have hardly been any better than us since the restart. Lackluster wins over Villa and Bournemouth, then losses to Arsenal and Sheffield United, getting shut out in both. At least we beat Leicester.
Colin Glassar
95 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:32:44
No live forum? I need to let off a little steam.
Kim Vivian
96 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:35:08
God knows how we will line up.

I'm predicting 1-1...

...But fire and brimstone on here this afternoon because we didn't win having actually turned up and put in a shift/controlled the game/got the wrong rub of the green/missed our chances/shite ref etc etc...

But I'd take 1-1. Prefer the clean sheet though.

See you on the forum, folk (folks?).

Laurie Hartley
97 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:36:00
Michael Kenrick # 51 - yes indeed - that was woeful on the part of DCL. No excuse can be made for his failure to bring that ball under control and at least get a shot away.
Brent Stephens
98 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:38:57
It's three at the back Kim
Kim Vivian
99 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:38:59
I'm actually feeling quite good about this, but that may be because I started drinking early. 12.00 k/off? - Not my fault.
Clive Rogers
100 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:39:13
Gordon playing in the middle.
Ian Horan
101 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:39:56
Looks like a 3- 5- 2 formation. The wingback Digne and Walcott to push Wolves ones back. Looks like its going to be a congested midfield. Hope Traore isn't playing there's far to much space over the top of our wing backs... this is either matching them like for like or Carlo having a look at everyone before the summer cull
Laurie Hartley
102 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:43:51
Colin # 82 - it's a life sentence.

Up the Blues!!!

Steve Ferns
103 Posted 12/07/2020 at 11:45:13
Clive, that would leave two number 10 style attacking midfielders with no idea how to tackle in the middle of midfield. Sure we all like the look of Gordon, but no one who's ever watched him in the under 23s ever considered him playing so deep or came away saying he was a good tackler.
Tommy Clarke
104 Posted 12/07/2020 at 12:56:17
Clueless.

Max Murphy
105 Posted 12/07/2020 at 13:13:02
Prediction: 4-0 to Wolves.
Dermot O'Brien
106 Posted 12/07/2020 at 13:55:23
What a load of SHITE.

Do we have any players that Carlo would actually want to keep?

Hywel Owen
107 Posted 12/07/2020 at 14:17:56
That was utter rubbish from beginning to end. I do not blame the manager because you cannot make bricks without straw. I do blame however those who have been responsible for the recruitment of new rejects and lazy injury prone trolls over the past few years. Most of the garbage on the pitch would have trouble keeping their place in a League One team.

If we do not sign several players (not shysters and wasters) before next season then we are headed for the Championship or worse. None of that rubbish in this afternoon's team should get paid for the next month at least.
Bill Fairfield
108 Posted 12/07/2020 at 14:37:20
There's not a coach on the planet that could do anything with this lot. They're just a squad of players with limited skill and intelligence.

Good luck, Carlo. I hope it's not a sad end to a great career

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