Youngsters shine in comfortable friendly win over Preston

Saturday, 5 September, 2020 112comments  |  Jump to last
Everton 2 - 0 Preston North End
Goalkeeper Harry Tyrer and left-back Niels Nkounkou stood out as the Blues coasted to a 2-0 win thanks to goals by Jonjoe Kenny and Dominic Calvert-Lewin in Everton's second and last friendly before the delayed 2021-20 season kicks off.

With Jordan Pickford, Jonas Lössl and Joao Virginia on international duty, U23s goalkeeper Tyrer was named as the starting goalkeeper in a team that also featured new signing Nkounkou and young defender Lewis Gibson.

While Richarlison and Bernard impressed from the senior players, it was Tyrer and Nkounkou who grabbed particular attention with hugely impressive displays.

The young keeper made a couple of excellent stops while Nkounkou displayed composure and trickery on the ball that suggests he could be more than adequate cover for Lucas Digne this season.

Jonjoe Kenny got the Toffees off to an early start with a goal after 8 minutes when he converted following good work by Richarlison and a touch on by Theo Walcott.

In contrast to their start at Blackpool in their previous friendly, Everton were playing some neat football and they had the ball in the net again midway through the second half at the end of a good passing move.

Bernard threaded it through to Kenny who cut the ball back for Richarlison to sidefoot home but the goal was chalked off for offside against Walcott.

Shortly afterwards, Everton's preparations for Sunday's Premier League kick-off took a potentially significant blow when Mason Holgate suffered what looked like it might be a serious enough injury to rule him out against Tottenham.

The defender appeared to twist his ankle stretching for the ball under a challenge from an opponent and hobbled off to be replaced by Kyle John.

Paul Gallagher swept a free-kick inches wide before Tyrer made an excellent save to tip a shot by Ethan Walker past his far post after the Blues' young defence had been carved open.

Early in the second half, John sent a superb cross to the 6-yard box but Walcott got in ahead of Dominic Calvert-Lewin and could only head narrowly over.

Moments later, Walcott stole in around the back and cut back for Anthony Gordon but the youngster's eventual shot was kicked away by the goalkeeper.

A foul on Gordon a minute later set up a shooting chance for Gylfi Sigurdsson from a direct free-kick but it flicked up off the wall and dropped behind.

Everton doubled their lead in the 65th minute when Bernard beat the offside trap to spring Richarlison and the latter Brazilian's low cross was bundled in by Calvert-Lewin from close range.

Walcott was withdrawn shortly afterwards in favour of Yannick Bolasie who burned the fullback and set up Richarlison who sliced wide.

At the other end, Tyrer pulled off another stunning save, turning a goal-bound header from Stockley just a few yards out onto his crossbar.

Beni Baningime came on for Gordon with 12 minutes to go before Calvert-Lewin missed with a gilt-edged chance from Sigurdsson's corner and was replaced by Ellis Simms in the 82nd minute.

2-0 should have been three in the 87th minute when a nice passing move opened Preston's defence up and Richarlison served the ball up on a platter for Bolasie but the winger somehow contrived to miss with the goal gaping and then stopped Simms's shot from going in when he blocked it in a prone position in front of goal.

Bolasie tried to make amends a minute later but his powerful drive was beaten away by Ripley in the visitors' goal.

Everton: Tyrer (Hansen), Kenny, Holgate (John), Gibson, Nkounkou, Sigurdsson, Gordon (Baningime), Bernard (Adeniran), Walcott (Bolasie), Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin (Simms)  


Reader Comments (112)

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Santa Krsh
1 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:10:20
Where is Branthwaite??

Injured, eh? Hope not...

Andrew Ellams
2 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:11:15
There are only 10 players in that team.
Jeff Armstrong
3 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:11:25
Surely we could have found a pair of boots for Allan.
Bobby Mallon
4 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:13:52
Are we getting a live forum?
Andrew Keatley
5 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:16:15
Andrew (2) - Calvert-Lewin is also playing.
Patrick McFarlane
6 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:16:37
Starting XI: Tyrer; Kenny, Gibson, Holgate, Nkounkou; Walcott, Sigurdsson, Bernard, Gordon; Calvert-Lewin, Richarlison

Subs: Hansen, Baningime, Bolasie, Adeniran, John, Simms

Stephen Vincent
7 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:16:41
Andrew #2 – Calvert-Lewin is the missing one.
Stephen Brown
8 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:19:43
Who's in the middle with Sigurdsson?? Bernard or Gordon?
Patrick McFarlane
9 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:21:21
Gordon is partnering Sigurdsson and Walcott and Bernard out wide, Stephen.
Will Mabon
10 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:26:32
3-3.
Jason Li
11 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:33:11
Branthwaite to go on loan to Watford?

Gibson did well in training and is No 4 centre-back now?

Or Gibson in shop window for scouts for a loan?

Patrick McFarlane
12 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:36:33
The Echo understands Jarrad Branthwaite's absence today is just a slight knock, nothing serious for the young centre-back.
Patrick McFarlane
13 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:41:32
Blackpool are the visitors to the other place today and the Echo highlights how unusual it is for both Mersey giants to be at home at the same time.

The last time both Everton and Liverpool played competitive home games on the same day - courtesy of stats guru and regular guest on the Royal Blue podcast Gavin Buckland - was on 3rd January 1981 in the third round of the FA Cup.

Everton defeated Arsenal 2-0 at Goodison in front of 34,000 while a gate of 37,000 saw Liverpool beat non-league Altrincham 4-1 at Anfield.

The two teams were then drawn together in the fourth round with Everton winning 2-1.

As for Everton and Liverpool both playing a home league game at the same time, David Prentice reveals you have to go back to 1894 for that!

Jay Wood
[BRZ]

14 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:48:53
Calling Dave Abrahams!

I seem to be having better luck with the live match day stream today on the club site today Dave, unlike the Blackpool game.

Nice pitch view of the sprinklers at work and the electronic advertising boards going through the motions.

Here's hoping it doesn't freeze on me when the action starts.

Brent Stephens
15 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:56:11
Jay, I'm just getting a high-pitch whine. Mind you, i'm used to that.
Jay Harris
16 Posted 05/09/2020 at 14:56:48
Jay
Ive got the same with 5 minutes to go to KO you would expect the players to be out there on the pitch.
Brian Wilkinson
17 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:01:12
Although Branthwaite is not playing,we have an able step in, in Lewis Gibson, classy player and well composed on the ball.

Had his injuries and doubters, but still think this lad has a bright future, Emergance of Branthswaite has made it harder for Gibson, but no doubting this lad has a calming influence in defence.

Big fan of Gibson, and hope he shows the quality he is capable of.

Alan Rodgers
18 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:03:58
Just a high pitched whine from Goodison. Amateur hour again.
Jay Wood
[BRZ]

19 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:05:05
Jay H. Been looking out for you.

When you've got time, check out this article.

Bradykinin & CV-19.

Could be very informative for you.

Brian Williams
20 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:06:02
Can't even get the high pitched whine now. Lol.
Chris Williams
21 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:06:23
5 past 3. High pitch whine and sprinklers. Geezers talking in the background

Whine stopped now

Jay Harris
22 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:06:31
Cant get the game at all. Useless people.
Patrick McFarlane
23 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:07:07
At least you guys are getting a picture I'm getting nothing at all.
Chris Williams
24 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:07:55
Sound of helicopter overhead now, but sound clearer

No it’s all gone now

Dave Abrahams
25 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:08:06
Jay (14), I’ve been trying to get the match on for the last twenty minutes, looks like we’ve got the same picture,nice but just a photograph.

I’m going out to be honest but trying to get it on for my great grandson, I’ll have to leave it with him, I hope his patience doesn’t run out, because he goes off on one, now and again!!!

David Milner
26 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:10:16
Sound & picture fine now.
Patrick McFarlane
27 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:10:22
I wonder if Lyndon or someone at the TW team can contact the club and ask why such a simple thing becomes such a chore and doesn't reflect at all well on the club. Championship clubs seem to be able to supply an acceptable service but Everton FC can't.
Chris Williams
28 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:10:30
Sprinklers on and the electronic advertising working. Camera panning

Oh we’re 1 0 up Kenny the scorer the clubs told me

Mike Keating
29 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:13:53
We gave up after 10 minutes of getting an ‘internal server error’ message.
Try Hesgoal website
Hope Rodrigues is not trying to watch this from his hotel bedroom - he might just fuck off back to Madrid!
Justin Doone
30 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:14:33
Wow, that shows how paper thin the squad is. Yes we have some promising youngsters and players away on international duty but if (when) we get a few injuries it could be interesting.
Frank McGregor
31 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:17:41
Watching the game on TV here in Marysville, Michigan.

Looks promising at the moment.

Alan Rodgers
32 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:23:03
Got picture and sound after 10 minutes but no commentary - which is no loss really.
Jay Wood
[BRZ]

33 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:35:42
Gone from picture+no sound, to picture+high pitch whine, to picture+ players shouting, no commentary, to picture+club commentary. Now stable.

Holgate off with a nasty twisted ankle, of his own making. Kyle John on.

Mark Brennnan
34 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:36:20
crashed again
Steve Greir
35 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:39:31
Jay (33), we're on ESPN Brasil again!!!

Sorry! Just switched on.

Steven Astley
36 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:47:46
All this losing picture shite, is it via a foreign stream or an official stream via being a member at evertonfc.com?!
Chris Williams
37 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:51:00
Official stream, Steven.

Finally got connected after about 10 attempts and an email.

Brian Wilkinson
38 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:53:32
The game is on YouTube good stream and no loss of picture at all first half, it is the 4th box down showing both club badges.

Just type in Everton v Preston and look for the 4th box down, been alright for me first half.

Mike Keating
39 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:53:38
Got the EFC stream now that it's half time!

Will the club refund the poor buggers who paid for this ‘'Service'?

This is just embarrassing.

Mike Keating
40 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:54:39
Great view of the sprinkler system (which does appear to be working).
Steven Astley
41 Posted 05/09/2020 at 15:59:18
What a joke that it's an official stream. Don't you effectively pay £30 for that membership too, that pretty much gives you nothing else of worth?
Jay Wood
[BRZ]

42 Posted 05/09/2020 at 16:01:33
Official club site stream, Steven.

Steve G. That is bizarre!

As for the game, Harry Tyrer looks good. I like the calm manner he receives a back pass and with one touch, two at most, he plays an unpressured ball out to put us on the offensive again.

Pity about the injury to Holgate which means Kenny has moved inside to centre-back with Kyle John going to right-back. Before that, both full-backs Nkounkou and Kenny were bombing up the line - as evidenced by Kenny's goal. Nkounkou in particular was putting in some delicious crosses.

Holgate not 100% on it, but Gibson looks good, both defending and on the ball. Sigurdsson done okay. Gordon and Bernard less so. Richarlison the best of our forwards, Walcott and Calvert-Lewin again just 'okay'.

Most of these are going to have to play the full 90 minutes, looking at the bare-bones bench.

Jay Harris
43 Posted 05/09/2020 at 16:01:46
Jay W, Thanks for that, much appreciated.

I am starting to feel better now.

Sorry I didn't respond sooner been trying to get this damn match on.

Eventually came on with no sound, then the players shouting to each other, then a short burst of commentary then the players again and eventually half time which is showing no problem. I missed the first 30 minutes. I don't know why Everton can't get this right!!

Chris Williams
44 Posted 05/09/2020 at 16:02:21
More or less Steven. A bag of ‘goodies’ worth not so much. I only became a member this season to get back on the season ticket waiting list.
Steve Greir
45 Posted 05/09/2020 at 16:03:57
Don't want to piss anyone off, but it's in full HD here -– no doubt have Richie's participation to thank for that. Just feel like a bit of a knob for missing the first 30 mins!

Now enjoying 1st-half highlights. Can't help myself getting excited by Nkounkou.

Steven Astley
46 Posted 05/09/2020 at 16:04:47
I really think they could do more with that membership thing (other than have working streams!), just another missed opportunity I think. Such a shame.
Will Mabon
47 Posted 05/09/2020 at 16:05:37
Steven Astley
48 Posted 05/09/2020 at 16:05:57
Blackpool 2-1 up against the shite! Hahahahahahahaha!
Will Mabon
49 Posted 05/09/2020 at 16:06:35
Steven... Yeehaaaaaaaaaa!!!!
Kim Vivian
50 Posted 05/09/2020 at 16:16:43
Calvert-Lewin's heading as lethal as ever.
Jeff Armstrong
51 Posted 05/09/2020 at 16:53:53
Bolasie did more in 15 minutes (including missing an absolute sitter from 12 inches out) than Walcott did in the previous 75.
Alan Rodgers
52 Posted 05/09/2020 at 16:54:22
Quite a decent game when the stream finally worked. Impressed with Tyrer, John and especially Nkounkou. Honourable mention for Bolasie who looked okay but missed a sitter!
Alex Gray
53 Posted 05/09/2020 at 16:54:27
Bar an AWFUL miss, Bolasie did really well there. The new left-back impressed and Bernard had a good game through the middle.
Tony Everan
54 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:00:27
Bolaise looked sharp and confident too. He made some good, positive runs down the right, should have scored towards the end. If we are not keeping him, he would be a decent acquisition for a few mid-lower clubs, he still has something to offer.
Jeff Armstrong
55 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:00:52
Has Sigurdsson retired from the Iceland team?
Steve Greir
56 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:01:36
Really impressed with how much of the 2nd half play (missed most of the 1st!) went through Anthony Gordon. He seemed to be everywhere and calling for everything.

Just hope he keeps his head, cause he could/should be massive for us.

Enjoyed that one.

Steve Ferns
57 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:02:40
Not a bad game. Plenty of bad points (eg, Bolasie's horror miss from a yard out) but more good points (eg, Bolasie's flick to send Kyle John roaring down the right).

It looks like Holgate's injury was not too bad by the fact he walked off without much of a limp. Kenny did well at both right-back and centre-back. He's doing enough for me to stake a claim for a spot in the squad. Gibson looks good, and I hope he's still in the squad for the season, although I'd prefer to sign a quality pacy centre-half (and sell Michael Keane).

The midfield was curious. All attacking players: Bernard, Sigurdsson, Gordon and Walcott. Not a good indictment for Baningime or Adeniran. Gordon was hit and miss. Gylfi refused to play for Iceland to fight for his spot in the side. Walcott was very involved, but lacked the finishing touch. Bernard was quiet first half and our best player in the second

Richarlison was a clear man of the match and dangerous throughout. He scored a goal that was ruled out because of Walcott titting about, but it was a good goal in my book and should give him confidence. Calvert-Lewin scored a scrappy one, had another ruled out and missed a great header. He also could have scored another great header but Walcott got in his way.

Bolasie came on and was all action. Same as last time, the guy is giving it his all to win his spot back. He is back to being Bolasie. No lingering injury issues. Is he good enough? Probably not. But if we can't sell him, and we can't afford to get a top-class winger in, then he's an option off the bench at least.

His miss needs to be seen to be believed. But he had some great touches and showed he's got his pace back and the tricks are still there.

A decent run out, considering a lot of the team are unlikely to feature next weekend.

A final word on Harry Tyrer. He didn't put a glove wrong. His distribution was great and when we needed him, just before half time and midway in the second half, he pulled off saves Pickford would have been proud of.

I hope his sister comes on here and tells us all about it. Top man. He'll remember this and he'll grow from it.

Stephen Brown
58 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:03:08
Shame for Bolasie as apart from that howler he looked sharp and attitude spot on
Tony Everan
59 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:04:58
Jeff,

He opted out of playing the two Nation League games to focus on Everton. Iceland's manager was seething.

Stephen Vincent
60 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:06:16
Kieran Dowell scored on his debut for Norwich.
Tony Hill
61 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:06:21
Tyrer was promising and his save in the second-half was outstanding. Apart from that, I didn't see much to get excited about if I'm honest. But it was a run out.
Ajay Gopal
62 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:06:42
Some very encouraging comments about Nkounkou, Bolasie and Tyrer. Can't believe that the season kicks off next Saturday, though. Just get a weird feeling that everyone is unprepared and rushed. Don't expect to see some great football in the first few weeks. Important to get some points on the board and then start bedding in the newcomers.

I would not be surprised to see a starting XI like:

Pickford
Kenny Keane Mina (Holgate injured?) Digne
Davies Gomes Delph Bernard
Richarlison Calvert-Lewin

Subs: Lössl, Gibson, Nkounkou, Bolasie, Gordon, Allan, Doucouré, Kean.

Jay Wood
[BRZ]

63 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:07:35
Okay, only a friendly, but better football and higher energy levels than vs Blackpool.

Harry Tyer certainly enhanced his reputation. He has always impressed playing for the junior teams. He looked very much at home with the first team today.

Nice touch to sub him at the death. He sat down with a huge smile on his face. He knows he played well.

Nkounkou looks good. When he gets on the ball he has one thought on his mind. Forward. It reminds me of the Steve McManaman story when he first played for Real Madrid with the flying full-back Michael Salgado behind him.

Stevie Mc recalls how Salgado's first words to him on the pitch as he flew past him were 'Cover me!' Nkounkou looks like he is cut from the same cloth.

I thought PNE might put more pressure on the centre of our defence when Kenny moved inside to cover for the injured Holgate, but we dealt with them comfortably. Gibson also had a game to be proud of. Resolute. Clean in his tackling. Quick recovery. Excellent distribution. Not shy to tell players where he wants them to move to when on the ball. Kyle John also came into his own in the 2nd half.

The midfield showed why we can't start the new season with the same as last. Sigurdsso was okay. Gordon looked off it, playing possibly unusually deep for him. Bernard got better in the second half. But we clearly need more thrust, energy and speed in the engine room of the team.

Richarlison's return was impressive. Calvert-Lewin more mixed. Walcott similar. Bolasie actually did quite well on his return, albeit proving to be PNE's best defender in his goal line miss then blocking Simms's follow up shot! He also seems to have bulked up a fair bit.

Most of the positives then come from the younger players who are going to be helped – either in-game if they play, or to buy them time – by the more experienced players coming in.

We'll be fine.

Jeff Armstrong
64 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:07:37
Thanks, Tony, I was going to say as well as playing for Everton, but to be fair he did okay today, maybe he's looking over his shoulder now!
Steve Ferns
65 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:07:39
Tony, his career as a top class player is in jeopardy. I think he’s given his country enough and it’s right that he’s thinking of himself. He either fights his way back into contention or he does enough to persuade someone else to buy him.
Steven Astley
66 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:10:37
Wonder if Gordon would benefit from a loan?
Mike Keating
67 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:13:29
Tony @ 54,

I think you might be right – Bolasie could be a useful impact player and we ain't going to get any decent fee for him.

The miss was a joke and I'm sure he then blocked Ellis Simms's shot on the line as he rolled over but he did look like a bundle of energy and is clearly keen to impress.

He reminds me a bit of Amokachi.

Jay Wood
[BRZ]

68 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:13:45
I wondered why Sigurdsson was available whilst all other internationals with games are away.

Did he really tell Iceland he wasn't available?

If we land all our claimed targets, no-one's place in midfield is guaranteed. Such competition has got to be good for us.

Steve Ferns
69 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:13:56
No, Steven. He's better off exactly where he is. He'll be very involved and be learning every day playing with top-class players. He's got plenty to learn.

Loans are best for players who have learnt all they need to, but are unlikely to get into the first team. It should be the realm of players 21 and over.

Just read Cadamateri's comments about how he got into the first team and was playing too much football to finish his development.

Steve Ferns
70 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:14:17
Yes he did, Jay.
Will Mabon
71 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:20:09
Playing in the first team is the ultimate for development, like match fitness is only gained from playing matches. You can only prepare so far, the rest comes from doing it.
Christy Ring
72 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:20:58
I hope Holgate's injury isn't serious. Encouraging to see Bolasie putting in a good shift, especially as he's one of the few natural wingers we have. Mina and Delph still on the injury list, unbelievable.
Tony Everan
73 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:25:05
Thought Sigurdsson did okay, looked like he was a bit sharper and focused. Is it wishful thinking that the break has done him good and he will find his best form this season? Probably will have more of a squad / sub role if he isn't sold.
Will Mabon
74 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:32:08
Tony, he showed for the ball a bit more today too. I was hoping for a little better with that free-kick though.
Christy Ring
75 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:32:08
Tony #73,

Hopefully Doucouré and James on the way, and along with Gomes and Allan, it's hard to see Sigurdsson starting. An expensive squad player?

Tony Everan
76 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:38:39
Will, Christy,

The opting out of the Iceland games I think tells us something about Sigurdsson. He wouldn't have taken that decision lightly. I think he has had a bit of burnout last season mental or physical, maybe a bit of both.

The decision seems like he is trying to manage himself better to try to get back to his best.

Steve Ferns
77 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:40:55
Tony, I read it as Sigurdsson fighting for his position. If he was worried about burnout then he’d be sitting out of games when they come thick and fast not now. He will have it in his mind that he’s starting against Spurs and that the new signings have to force him out the side.
Lev Vellene
78 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:46:26
If Sigurdsson is finally fighting, at all, then that sounds good for me! A season or so late, but maybe Everton no longer seem to be a retirement home for ailing careers?
Steven Astley
79 Posted 05/09/2020 at 17:52:10
Steve, where do you see Gordon fitting in if we are to sign James Rodriguez, Doucoure and as rumoured, will be playing a 3-5-2?

Considering he is contracted for another 5 years, a loan for Gordon could be an option.

Justin Doone
80 Posted 05/09/2020 at 18:01:13
Decent run-out, nice to see some youngsters performing well.

Nkounkou has stood out at left-back in both friendly matches. Great pace, good athleticism and can pass and cross. That's what I heard about him previously. It's just his positional sense and defending to work on.

Holgate injured himself because I don't think he was properly concentrating. He needs to regain fitness and focus for the entire match. Hope he's back soon.

With more and better chances created I think Richarlison and Calvert-Lewin can improve on last seasons goal returns. Neither are natural finishers / strikers but both are improving. I'd love a top-class striker but I don't think we will get one this season.

Lastly Bolasie.. He is still the enigma. One minute great strength, pace, cross or shot. The next missing an excellent chance from 2 yards out or playing a dreadful back pass to the opposition 30 yards from goal.

He excites me and unless a decent fee comes in for him I'd be more than happy for him to use his talent and aggression ahead of Walcott.

Ideally we will get a top-class skilful, pacey winger but until then he improves the team IMO.

Christy Ring
81 Posted 05/09/2020 at 18:05:43
Sigurdsson is 31 in 3 days time, opting out of international football to concentrate on his club football, a tad too late in my opinion; his best days are behind him.

It definitely shows with Allan, and hopefully Doucoure and James on the way, that last season Sigurdsson could stroll around the field, which he did, because he knew there was no-one to take his place.

Jamie Crowley
82 Posted 05/09/2020 at 18:09:39
Aiming high, anyone think we should have 10 points going into the derby?

Assuming we want to challenge the Top 6 after revamping our midfield, we need to grab points early as the games are entirely winnable.

With Allan, Doucoure, and James, we really should be putting the bar high again? Only the best?

Steve Ferns
83 Posted 05/09/2020 at 18:13:59
Steven, I haven't seen or heard any 3-5-2 rumours. I can't see it myself as we only have 3 senior centre-backs and two young backups. I think a back 4 is far more likely.

With out-and-out wingers, we have Walcott and Bolasie only. Iwobi, Bernard, and Gordon fancy themselves as a Number 10. As does the imminent signing of James Rodriguez.

With signing a load of central midfielders to add to what we already have, it seems more likely to me that we'll play a more centrally focused lineup. Be that 4-4-2 diamond (4-1-2-1-2), 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1.

If we play one of these formations, Gordon is more likely to be in the Number 10 role (as back-up) or wide in a 4-2-3-1. If 4-3-3 then he could play in either 3. In a 4-1-2-1-2 then Number 10 really.

If James is going to be playing as a Number 10, then it's more likely to me that Anthony Gordon is his backup from the bench than Sigurdsson. The latter I expect to be sold or to play deeper as he has been for most of the last 12 months.

Steve Greir
84 Posted 05/09/2020 at 18:17:49
Perhaps I should keep my comments to myself, but the Gordon I watched today – considering the limited exposure he's had to first-team action – continued to impress. Absolutely no way – in my humble (flawed?) opinion – he should be sent out on loan!
Jamie Crowley
85 Posted 05/09/2020 at 18:18:33
I desperately want the 4-2-3-1.

Digne Holgate Keane Coleman
Allan Doucoure (Gomes)
Richarlison James Gordon (Kean)
Calvert-Lewin

I think that formation fits our players best. But Carlo knows best, so over to him.

Jamie Crowley
86 Posted 05/09/2020 at 18:19:53
Steve G -

I agree 100%. From what I've seen, Gordon should start in my opinion. No way we loan that kid out. Oodles of talent, and when he gains confidence he will frighten defenders.

Love the kid.

Annika Herbert
87 Posted 05/09/2020 at 18:26:26
Christy @81, you nailed it with your comment as far as I am concerned. He should have no place in the team if all the signings come to fruition
Alex Gray
88 Posted 05/09/2020 at 18:36:46
Gordon has potential and stood out end of last season, but I'm not sure if that was down to how poor everyone else was. I see him as a sub this season but getting a lot of minutes. There are other youngsters who have stagnated who need loaning out more in my opinion.
Mike Gaynes
89 Posted 05/09/2020 at 18:42:41
Steve #77, you are correct that Sigurdsson chose to stay with the club rather than turn out for Iceland, and his national team manager is seriously pissed off about it, so good for him!:

Iceland furious as Gylfi Sigurdsson misses England Nations League match

Jamie, I agree, Gordon is my 4th midfielder starter with Allan, Doucoure and James. But I'm quite sure Carlo will disagree. Depending on the alignment, I'd expect to see Gomes, Sigurdsson or Walcott still in there.

Special delight for me to see Bolasie play so strongly (one horror moment aside) and to see the young Yank keeper get to walk out on the pitch for even a few seconds.

And I am dazzled by young Nkounkou, whose acceleration over the first ten yards is pretty spectacular, and whose touch on the ball is fun to watch. I may -- eventually -- be forced to grudgingly forgive Brands for selling Antonee Robinson.

But not yet.

Steve Ferns
90 Posted 05/09/2020 at 18:46:22
Mike, I would lay the blame on Robinson with Marco Silva. He didn't rate him. If you're Director of Football and your coach doesn't rate the young lad and he's at the age where he needs first-team games, then it's loan or sell.

Marco was meant to be here long-erm so I think Marcel sold him and then looked to get someone younger and with more potential in.

Martin Nicholls
91 Posted 05/09/2020 at 18:50:51
Mike Keating #67 – spot on about Bolasie. Got to admit I'm no fan of his, even prior to his injury, but you hit the nail on the head by comparing his performance today with the way Amo used to play.

As others have said, I'd have him ahead of Walcott, particularly as we're more likely to get a fee for Walcott if we let him go.

Brian Williams
92 Posted 05/09/2020 at 18:53:16
Martin. If we're more likely to get a fee for Walcott does that not make him the better player?

Having said that I think they're both rubbish.

Mike Gaynes
93 Posted 05/09/2020 at 19:04:20
Fair enough, Steve. You know I like Brands and had no use for Silva, so I'm happy to shift the blame!

Martin and Mike, I'd say Bolasie looked like the old Bolasie. He was always bustling with energy and commitment before he got hurt, albeit prone to errors like today. But I'd be delighted to see him get another chance in the club, if only as a late-game sub off the bench. He can be fun to watch.

Michael Lynch
94 Posted 05/09/2020 at 19:05:44
Bolasie rolled back the years there. I would have him ahead of Walcott for a place on the right, but both of them are squaddies rather than starters.

I thought Gordon was a touch anonymous again, and I can't see him starting too many games if we do get all our transfer targets.

I loved watching Nkoukou, even if he is still pretty raw. So much confidence and power, and he's definitely not going to hide – he's always in the thick of the action.

Also, he chose to come to Everton simply because he looked at our options at left-back and reckoned he stood more chance of first-team football with us - so he's hungry to play rather than just pick up a wage.

Brian Williams
95 Posted 05/09/2020 at 19:10:10
Nkoukou dispelled the myth today that age has something to do with having the confidence and ability to "go for it."

The lad's 19 and plays without fear, and plays really well from the two games I've seen him in.

Admittedly they were only friendlies against lower-level opposition but he did what lots of others couldn't do in those games and that's "shine."

Steven Astley
96 Posted 05/09/2020 at 19:12:12
Just watched the highlights on YouTube.

Nkounkou, wow, looks like he is going to be a player! Straight into the first team, no messing about with Unsy.

Richarlison looked a different animal and looked good back on the left-hand side.

Bolasie, to be honest, I'd like to see us hang on to him and use as a squad player, but that depends on how many subs we are allowed to name this coming season?

I think Kenny can do a job for us on the right, no need to dip into market for that area.

Get Doucouré and James signed up and I think the only things we need are a new centre-forward and a goalkeeper.

Will Mabon
97 Posted 05/09/2020 at 19:19:47
Steve - three subs.
Justin Doone
98 Posted 05/09/2020 at 19:33:12
Formations and players have to be fluid to cover, make runs, create space and help each other out. There not often as strict or structured as they used to be depending on managers preferences.

Ideally a balance between defence and attack would result in a 4-1-4-1 or something similar but in reality this can become 2-3-2-3 in posession and 5-4-1 when defending.

In short as long as we play well and win games I'll leave the formations to others.

Bill Gienapp
99 Posted 05/09/2020 at 19:35:28
I noticed Baningime was wearing #12, which suggests that Digne may be inheriting #3 from Baines – well deserved, in my opinion.

Baningime taking #12 is a joke though, that guy's going to be nowhere near the first team this season. He could barely get on the pitch for a friendly in which half the squad was missing.

(Yes, I take a little too much interest in squad numbers)

Jason Li
100 Posted 05/09/2020 at 19:39:16
#89 Mike

Agreed, I think Brands has come through well with our new left-back.

The loans for Kenny and Gibson have made them better players – Brands's planning again.

Final thing I've realised today during the Allan signing: Brands has amazing styled hair for his age – he could even look the part in LA. Rodriguez and Brands in a L'Oreal hair-type advert could be a new commercial avenue for us.

Mike Gaynes
101 Posted 05/09/2020 at 19:54:41
That's 'cause you're a numbers guy, Bill.
David Chait
102 Posted 05/09/2020 at 20:00:15
Nkounkou nailed on as Digne backup... if he builds on this, I would consider letting Digne go a for a nice fat fee in the next summer window before his value starts to drop off and promote him. No-one can tell me a full-back at 19 or 20 is too young if they are good enough when Bayern have the best in Davies.

Bolasie offers us something none of our other players does... power and pace. Walcott is pace but more deft touches... I doubt it'll be enough for Carlo but he does add something very different.

Unless we get a young hotshot like Emerson, let Kenny do the job... would like to personally see what he could do after his season in Germany.

Andy Crooks
103 Posted 05/09/2020 at 22:58:15
Mike, don't dare give up on Antonee. I know he is your Duffy. Celtic made the best signing in years
I like US footballers. It seems to me, Mike, that any US player who makes the grade, has got something special about them. McBride would be in my top twenty players ever. Not on his talent, which was limited, but on his pure Irishness. ( don't ask)
Jay Harris
104 Posted 05/09/2020 at 23:11:44
Andy,
I agree they are all big hearted players that give 100%.

I also thought that we should have gone in for McKenney. Roma got a steal there 2000 loan fee and option to buy at 10000 I believe.

Christy Ring
105 Posted 05/09/2020 at 23:31:41
Andy, if you don't mind me asking, what's the Irish connection?
Mike Gaynes
106 Posted 05/09/2020 at 23:39:13
Jay, it was Juventus, not Roma. The deal is a loan fee of €4.5 million, with an option to buy at €18.5 million, which could rise to €25 million.

And it turns out nobody else had a chance. McKennie's childhood idol was Pirlo. Once the legend came in for him, it was all over.

Derek Knox
107 Posted 06/09/2020 at 01:16:36
I know it's early days, but I think we may have netted a potential bargain of this current window in Niels Nkounkou.

The lad seems, although he has only played a couple of games, that he could be a genuine prospect. I also appreciate that a couple of performances does not always display any player's future prospects, but having watched potential for as long as I care to remember, this lad looks to have it in abundance.

Sorry for being an 'old arse', but paying a mountain of money, does not always guarantee success, neither can getting players from(especially on a free) but I can see something there that has cost us nothing but could save us a fortune!

Robert Workman
108 Posted 06/09/2020 at 08:40:36
Great to see the white-topped and blue socks again. Reminded me of great Everton teams from the 60s.
Neil Copeland
109 Posted 06/09/2020 at 10:37:27
Harry Tyrer looks about 12 years old, I half expected his mum to come onto the pitch and drag him off by his ear. Come to think of it... James doesn't look much older.
Tony Everan
110 Posted 06/09/2020 at 11:26:39
Good to see Big Nev giving a shout out to Harry Tyrer, telling him well done and that he had a good game.

Harry will have enjoyed that.

Robert Tressell
111 Posted 06/09/2020 at 22:13:39
Just watched the footage on YouTube. Only about 5 mins so can't get too much of a feel for the game but nice confident passing out from the back.

Goalie looked very composed. Kenny scored a goal through sheer determination. Nkounkou has something about him. Gibson good on the ball.

Lovely run and cross from John and quite a good cameo from Ellis Simms, who might have scored but for the goalline clearance from Bolasie.

Starting to feel like we have some depth and players coming through. Encouraging signs. Fascinating to see how it shapes up when the new recruits get started.

Matthew Williams
112 Posted 07/09/2020 at 11:59:32
Did Ben Pearson play for them?

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