Could this tie provide an opportunity at first-team level for the fit-again Ellis Simms?
Everton hope to use the Carabao Cup as a pick-me-up following Saturday's disappointing reverse at Aston Villa as they travel south to face Queens Park Rangers.
Normally Rafael Benitez would look to this third-round tie as an opportunity to give game time to some of the more fringe elements of the squad but, with some key players missing through injury, he now has to keep an eye on keeping the bulk of his players fresh for Saturday's clash with Norwich City while still fielding a strong enough side to progress to the next phase of the EFL Cup.
The likes of Asmir Begovic, Tom Davies, Jonjoe Kenny and Anthony Gordon might have eyed this tie to see some action but all four were involved at Villa Park and they could well find themselves in the starting XI against Championship side Rangers in what is the first meeting between the two clubs in his competition.
Benitez has also hinted that Ellis Simms might get a chance to impress now that he has recovered from injury. The young striker had a spell on loan at Blackpool last season and will be itching to pull on the jersey for the first team but the sensible money would be on him coming off the bench if things are going well while Salomon Rondon starts in a bid to up his match fitness.
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There could also be opportunities for Jarrad Branthwaite and Mason Holgate, with the latter having played no part in either of the last two matches.
Like Huddersfield Town, Everton's opponents in the previous round, QPR have made a decent start to the season and they sit just behind the Terriers in the Championship table in 8th place with 12 points from eight games.
They're winless in their last three games, however, having been held at Reading and then been beaten by Bournemouth away and Bristol City at home on Saturday.
Kick-off: 7:45 pm, Tuesday 21 September 2021
Last Time: QPR 1 - 2 Everton (Premier League, March 2015)
Reader Comments (62)
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1 Posted 21/09/2021 at 06:37:20
Kenny, Kean, Holgate, Godfrey,
Davies, Doucouré, Gomes,
Iwobi, Simms, Gray
2 Posted 21/09/2021 at 07:04:57
3 Posted 21/09/2021 at 07:33:18
I just hope we field a strong team and progress, we've got 4 days until our next League game. We need to end this trophy drought...it's embarrassing.
4 Posted 21/09/2021 at 07:36:44
5 Posted 21/09/2021 at 07:43:13
I can see those players Lyndon calls out in the report starting. Definitely Davies for Allan. Not so sure about Simms as I think Rondon is already the backup striker and needs game time himself looking back at Saturday. It will be good to see him feature though.
Come on Everton. Please take this competition seriously. It's become a bit of a personal agenda for me as it grates me we've never won it.
Looking forward to the pre-match gathering in Fitzrovia and then onto Shepherd's Bush.
6 Posted 21/09/2021 at 07:43:49
He expects them to rest players too, as league places are more important than this Cup.
It will be a tough game for our patched-up team.
7 Posted 21/09/2021 at 08:41:06
8 Posted 21/09/2021 at 08:44:04
Its a opportunity for the firnge players.. so lets hope they do themselves justice and get into the team on merit next time around
9 Posted 21/09/2021 at 08:51:01
10 Posted 21/09/2021 at 09:10:44
Kenny Holgate (c) Branthwaite Godfrey
Davies Gomes Iwobi
Townsend Rondon Gordon
I would not like to risk Begovic picking up an injury before the Norwich game, with Pickford out for a few games.
Same with Gray, Allan, Doucouré & Mina. Keane does not deserve another game.
It would be nice for Ellis Simms to get a 15-minute cameo.
11 Posted 21/09/2021 at 09:24:37
12 Posted 21/09/2021 at 09:35:38
13 Posted 21/09/2021 at 09:41:09
14 Posted 21/09/2021 at 09:59:00
I would like to see Branthwaite, Simms, Davies and Gordon used. Rondon needs more game time to get match fit so will likely start. Holgate and Kenny need a good performance to stake their claims.
Anyone know the situation with Gbamin, is he available for selection tonight?
15 Posted 21/09/2021 at 10:03:27
Maybe he will start him and tell him he's only playing an hour? It's no use starting him otherwise, in my opinion; I'm sure the player will only try and pace himself again tonight, because he's nowhere near fit enough yet.
16 Posted 21/09/2021 at 10:14:56
Perhaps some of the youngsters might step up but there seems a lack of players excelling in the U23s; if only Thierry Small stuck around, I daresay he'd get a start tonight. We really should have tried harder to bring in a player who could ideally fill in on both sides (a new Phil Neville?!) on the cheap.
The thought of Gomes and Davies starting together terrifies me but they need to help out, so I think you maybe end up with something like:
Kenny Mina Holgate Godfrey
Doucouré Davies Gomes
Iwobi Rondon Gordon
I'd keep Gray on the bench till we need him as, if we lose him to injury, then we are really struggling. Not a great team but then we know our squad depth is non-existent.
17 Posted 21/09/2021 at 10:15:35
18 Posted 21/09/2021 at 10:16:22
So I guess Holgate will be one of the centre-backs with either Keane or Mina alongside, with Digne being our only natural left-back I doubt he will start so maybe Godfrey will be used in his place.
Davies and Gomes will fill the midfield places with maybe Simms starting the game flanked by Iwobi and Townsend with Gordon coming on in the 2nd half to replace Townsend who will be needed on Saturday.
Reading the report of the U23 game, we had a centre-back playing left-back, seeing Nkounkou is out on loan and Small has left. How does a club leave itself that short of full-backs?
19 Posted 21/09/2021 at 10:28:26
If these guys have ambition to be regular 1st team players they should be able to run a second division team ragged.
With Pickford, Coleman, DCL, Richarlison and Digne not fit it does expose us. But the players coming in will be strong enough to do the job.
20 Posted 21/09/2021 at 10:32:54
Godfrey could do with game time as well. 3 at the back? Holgate, Keane / Mina & Godfrey?
21 Posted 21/09/2021 at 10:40:51
22 Posted 21/09/2021 at 10:41:20
"With there being no reserve games these days, there aren't any other games for the fringe players to play in."
It's been many years now since the Reserves were renamed the U21s, less since they became the U23s but, in each case, provision is there for over-age players, such as the fringe players of which you speak, to get runouts for match practice. So those 'reserve' games are there – albeit not in name.
Increasingly though, it just doesn't happen. We have been told that first-team or senior players now have it written into their contracts that they will not play for the U23s as they see it to be demeaning or unbecoming for them to play with the kids.
Puzzling to me as I would have thought that staying match-sharp was important to a professional footballer. But equally I could believe that the pace and competitiveness of the U23s games is no better than what they can achieve in training at Finch Farm.
23 Posted 21/09/2021 at 11:39:21
But (always a but), this goes back to the system. I was no advocate of the Central League as I didn't feel that was fit for purpose or produced anything better than what we have now. But (again), whether we like it or not, from a perception perspective, a modern senior professional likely won't want to appear with the kids on a training pitch at Finch Farm.
Do I agree with that attitude? Absolutely not. I'm conscious this is a QPR match thread but it's systematic change needed in my opinion. Said it many times and it's another debate, but B Team concept or Feeder Club approach for me. I'd go for B Team as they'd still be representing Everton and wearing the shirt.
Anyway, back to tonight. Blue skies over west London right now. Let's hope they stay here!
24 Posted 21/09/2021 at 11:44:40
Kenny Holgate Keane Godfrey
Davies Gbamin Gomes
Townsend Rondon Iwobi
With: Simms, Gordon, maybe Branthwaite and Dobbin coming on if Everton are comfortably leading or bringing in Gray, Doucoure, Digne, if the team needs to come from behind or break a deadlocked game.
25 Posted 21/09/2021 at 11:50:33
26 Posted 21/09/2021 at 12:00:37
Rondon looked shattered after five minutes so Id play Simms. My Blackpool mate said he looked good last season, albeit in League one.
27 Posted 21/09/2021 at 12:03:20
28 Posted 21/09/2021 at 12:07:12
Very few fringe players ever improve their first team hopes in these kind of games because the intensity just isn't there.
If Rafa doesn't start the youngsters then you won't have the desire and hunger to really go after the result.
I see it going to penalties.
29 Posted 21/09/2021 at 12:18:40
Dobbin played for the Under-23s last night and came off with an injury, so I can't see him being involved tonight unfortunately.
30 Posted 21/09/2021 at 12:18:50
The fact that we cant even fill our bench most weeks doesnt fill me with confidence to be honest. I just hope some of the lads who have been used as a sub in the last few games (Gomes & Davies in particular) really try and step up tonight.
Mason Holgate should be back in the side and can count himself unlucky to have missed out lately after a much improved performance at Brighton.
Onward Evertonians 💙
31 Posted 21/09/2021 at 12:51:08
32 Posted 21/09/2021 at 12:54:11
So, if Gbamin is not fit (thanks, Jonathan!), then probably Holgate can play as the sweeper in front of Keane and Branthwaite as centre-backs, allowing Davies and Gomes to push up further, supported by Kenny and Godfrey on the flanks, and 3 of Iwobi, Townsend, Gray or Rondon up front.
Makes me want to cry that during the transfer window, Man United got Ronaldo @ half a million per week, not to mention Sancho and Varane for a combined transfer fee of 125 million, and we got:
Lonergan - Free
Begovic - Free
Townsend - Free
Rondon - Free
Gray - for a transfer fee equivalent to about 3 weeks of Ronaldo's wages
Anyone who believes we can achieve better than Top 10 this season with this squad, needs to have their head examined.
33 Posted 21/09/2021 at 13:03:05
Other than that, having looked at the squad we should give the kids a go and prioritise the league and look after the thin 1st team we have remaining.
We got a whole bunch of players off the books this past year... like Olsen who we replace with... Lonerhan. Pffff errr
I wonder when Chelsea loan out their usual 20 players if they pay half the wages for all of them or just some? Or in fact if they give players away for free plus pay the club taking them off our hands as a favour to the player! Its happened too much now. I've had enough. £10 mil to get rid of Martinez, £20 for Koeman, £8 for Allardyce, Silva l'm not sure. And Carlo who could walk away for nothing We paid £2 mil for Silva and £2 mil for Walsh. We buy players and lose on what 80% of them? As in £20m, £30 mil, £45 mil and we recoup nothing? We stopped bringing young players through. We always always have a misshaped imbalance to our squad every single season. Shouldn't that be the first topic? Okay we lose James Kean, Bolasie, Walcott so replace them with Gray and Townsend. We turn our noses up at offers for JJK and we all know he's going for free too, in the end.
This Moshiri has helped fund and get Bramley going, if we remain in the premier league. On the pitch he is abysmal. A moron if you will. Ooh lets hire Brands then let whoever is in charge for those 18mths pick the players to sign so we are akways chasing our tail.
Oh and for fecks sake. Kean keane kean keane. One has dreads and lives in ltaly and the other a skinny slow moving numbnuts.
34 Posted 21/09/2021 at 13:41:07
35 Posted 21/09/2021 at 13:44:44
As I said previously, Kenwright waited 10 years for someone stupid enough to give him a load of money and allow him to stay... Then, along came Moshiri.
I expect Kenwright to outlast Moshiri.
36 Posted 21/09/2021 at 13:48:24
I see one of the comments above gives Lonergan a shout (probably worth while). It just goes to show how huge the Norwich game is on Saturday. It's huge because we are just one defeat away from an absolute crisis! That's how it feels. The fact we have no senior strikers available (Rondon only 70% fit at best) on only matchday number 6 is nothing short of unbelievable.
I personally don't give a fuck about tonight's game as it's a competition we simply will not ever win and I would much prefer to keep anyone who is crucial to the team to be available for the Norwich match. With that in mind, I would go something along the lines of:
GK Lonergan RB Kenny LB Godfrey CD Branthwaite CD Holgate RM Townsend CM Davis CM Gomes LM Gordon ACM Iwobi CF Simms.
Subs: Begovic, Keane, Mina, Digne, Gray, Doucouré, Allan, Dobbin and the new lad from Sunderland.
37 Posted 21/09/2021 at 13:49:47
Expect a half-hearted performance and a defeat. We are so stretched up front, we can't afford to lose Townsend or Gray. Crazy to be this stretched in September!
38 Posted 21/09/2021 at 13:57:14
39 Posted 21/09/2021 at 14:09:38
40 Posted 21/09/2021 at 14:23:30
I hope I'm wrong as I would go strong as we need to get Villa right out of our system before playing Norwich at the weekend. However, the aim of the Benitez appointment is to ensure we stay in the Premier League til we move into Bramley-Moore Dock.
41 Posted 21/09/2021 at 14:26:42
Norwich have lost their last 15 Premier League games so we should be able to turn them over Saturday... mind you, we all know what happens when a side needs to end a bad run – we usually oblige! UTFT!
42 Posted 21/09/2021 at 14:44:01
I'm more hopeful of an FA cup run once the squad gets to grips with Rafas tactics etc.
I do think Rafa will take it seriously but he will need to rest some player's whilst giving game time to fringe player's to sharpen them up.
I would like Rafa to start how he finished the last game so he and the players understand what he was trying to do because I haven't a clue.
If it doesn't work against championship teams, don't try it against Premier league teams.
Hope for a win and more importantly no injuries.
43 Posted 21/09/2021 at 15:13:03
44 Posted 21/09/2021 at 15:21:08
League points are important, losing later rather than earlier in this competition isnt!
45 Posted 21/09/2021 at 15:21:08
46 Posted 21/09/2021 at 15:49:39
I think Rondon will start again but there's no way he can play the full game. We'll probably finish with no recognised striker on the pitch, or if we're losing we might throw on Simms just to see if he can get on the end of something. I really hope Rafa doesn't risk Gray as, right now, he's our star player and if he gets injured we're utterly fucked.
I know we've been unlucky with injuries but how can a club of our size have no decent back-up in attack or on either side of defence? What a fucking shambles.
47 Posted 21/09/2021 at 15:52:51
48 Posted 21/09/2021 at 15:55:22
I'll give the Rafa Roulette game a go for once:
Although, I could see him playing Doucoure/resting Gray.
49 Posted 21/09/2021 at 16:06:46
Wont happen but for me:
Kenny Holgate Branthwaite Anderson
U23 Iwobi Gordon
50 Posted 21/09/2021 at 16:13:23
51 Posted 21/09/2021 at 16:21:02
Dave Prentice's Team: (5-4-1): Begovic; Holgate, Branthwaite, Godfrey; Kenny, Davies, Doucoure, Gomes, Iwobi, Gordon; Rondon
Sam Carroll's Team:(4-3-3): Begovic; Kenny, Holgate, Godfrey, Branthwaite; Iwobi, Gomes, Davies, Gordon; Rondon, Simms
I'd much prefer the local football Journalists to be digging into the FFP predicament facing Everton FC and how serious it might be and for how long is it likely to curtail the club's spending, or is it, as some claim being used by the club as a smokescreen of convenience?
They might also care to ask the movers and shakers at the club what the hell they are doing to try and improve the commercial income at Everton FC, which would help alleviate the financial strait-jacket we apparently have.
52 Posted 21/09/2021 at 16:22:40
53 Posted 21/09/2021 at 16:25:57
I would start with our strongest "fit" side and then make changes for the second half hopefully with our noses in front.
The lower league sides are always up for games against the big boys so expect a tough game but it is winnable and I always believe you should try and win every game.
Lets go for it!!
54 Posted 21/09/2021 at 16:31:50
RB Kenny CB Mina CB Holgate LB Digne
RM Davies CM Doucoure LM Gomez
RW Iwobi CF Rondon LW Gordon
55 Posted 21/09/2021 at 16:48:18
We have to make multiple changes but so will they. QPR play again on Friday evening, away to WBA, that game is far more important to them than tonight's cup game.
56 Posted 21/09/2021 at 16:48:19
I spent so many years watching Everton from afar at ungodly hours in random places wishing I could be at Goodison. As some called out before, they are the supporters I symphasise with.
Likewise, those who can't afford it. Just like in the 80s when, despite using paper round money and technically a loan off my mum to get a season ticket, we always expend money to go and watch them.
Love of my life no matter how much they frustrate and hurt me.
57 Posted 21/09/2021 at 16:51:00
BBC team news says Gbamin has thigh problem and unavailable for selection.
Also says Richie, Seamus, Pickford out for two to three weeks. Same as Calvert Lewin.
58 Posted 21/09/2021 at 17:13:22
I do hope your wrong re BK.
Koeman and Walsh were hung out too dry, but who authorised the sales?
Ancelotti and Brands ditto.
FFP should have not been factor for transfer this last window, but it was/is.
Why are they still with us?
Moshiri is a successful businessman, so how has he allowed himself to be hoodwinked by lesser mortals.
IMO let Usmanov loose in the boardroom and watch the sparks fly.
As Ive said previously, Ancelotti had Brands over on James contract, regardless whether its £200k or £250k, who else sanctioned the salary?
59 Posted 21/09/2021 at 17:13:52
60 Posted 21/09/2021 at 17:21:24
For example Iwobi who is probably a nice lad cannot play football for me - hope he proves me wrong mind you.
We are all living through an ongoing crisis and not just Covid its the present day Everton FC the club we love.
Those of us who have supported through thick and thin, me since 1956, seen great successes cannot believe the incompetence from the top these days.
But of course we do still support them and will continue. Only one team can win each trophy every season. Just wish my grandkids could see its us for a change.
Lets hope Benitez can sort them out asap and get them playing for the club not themselves and as a team not a bunch of overpaid mercenaries
Rest my case !!
61 Posted 21/09/2021 at 18:18:38
As for tonight, I've already written this one off, but hope springs eternal and maybe we will get a pleasant surprise for once. I really hope Gordon has a good game and scores - it will do his confidence a world of good. Davies is not nearly as bad a player as some on TW think he is. I wouldn't risk Gray tonight as we need 3 points on Saturday to keep up some momentum.
62 Posted 21/09/2021 at 18:44:41
Loftus Road, known as the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium since 2019.
I saw us get battered 3-0 in 1985 when we were champions.
I also saw a dreadful 0-0 draw where as I recall Simon Stainrod and our Peter Eastoe got sent off.
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