Calvert-Lewin niggle a concern ahead of the derby

07/02/2023 91comments  |  Jump to last

Everton will continue to monitor Dominic Calvert-Lewin's fitness ahead of Monday's Anfield derby after he was substituted as a precaution with an hour gone against Arsenal at the weekend.

New Blues boss Sean Dyche was already preparing Neal Maupay to come on when James Tarkowski headed home what proved to be the winning goal in the 60th minute and Calvert-Lewin was duly removed from the fray before the restart.

Dyche suggested afterwards that the 25-year-old had been feeling discomfort in his hamstring but the decision was made to start him and then manage his minutes which was a strategy that his predecessor, Frank Lampard, used after the resumption of the season following the World Cup.

Calvert-Lewin has battled a series of problems since recovering from a serious quad injury that he sustained towards the beginning of last season. He was only sporadically available over the second half of the 2021-22 campaign but returned to score the dramatic winner against Crystal Palace last May.

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Then he sustained a knee injury just days before this season began and was sidelined for weeks before returning, only to dislocate a shoulder and pick up a hamstring problem heading prior to the long international break for Qatar 2022.

It appears as though that hamstring is still dogging him but according to El Bobble on Twitter yesterday, a precautionary scan undertaken at Finch Farm yesterday showed no serious damage to the muscle.

Nevertheless, he will be a concern for that big game in the Premier  League against Liverpool in six days' time, an issue compounded by the fact that Everton failed completely to bolster their attacking options during the January transfer window. 

It left as striking options only Maupay and Ellis Simms whose season-long loan at Sunderland was cut short early at the start of the year. The 21-year-old Academy product has been named on the subs bench in the last four Premier League games but was given only two short cameos by Lampard totalling less than 15 minutes in the home defeats to Brighton and Southampton.

Dyche may need to call upon both players if Calvert-Lewin is sidelined for any length of time as the new manager plots a path to survival from relegation this season.


Reader Comments (91)

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Neil Thomas
1 Posted 07/02/2023 at 14:18:04
Sell him in the summer. No good having a player who can hardly manage half a season, no matter how good.
Tony Everan
2 Posted 07/02/2023 at 14:19:05
I'd think Sean Dyche will want the physical presence up front so he will be working on Simms and watching him closely. He will surely get his opportunity if Calvert-Lewin is unavailable.

It's good news the scans on his hamstring showed nothing. Maybe he just needs a run of games to get the body used to it again, rather than getting his fitness in the gym, but best leave that call to the professionals.

Kieran Kinsella
3 Posted 07/02/2023 at 14:20:23
If the scan shows nothing then presumably he suffers from Daniel Sturridge Syndrome.
Danny O’Neill
4 Posted 07/02/2023 at 14:36:01
Strong shout Neil @1

I'd take 14 games out of Rodriguez last season and right now.

I hope Dominic can get back to where he can be.

Personally and just an opinion, I think it's in his head as much as his body.

He nearly got 2 goals on Saturday. One might have change him. As a striker that's all he needs.

The lad has been run into the ground as our young lone striker for seasons. I have no surprise he is fatigued.

On another young player, great to see Tom Davies' attitude from the bench watching the highlights. It was like watching a supporter on the bench. Could have been me!!

Pete Clarke
5 Posted 07/02/2023 at 15:01:15
He has been unfortunate with injuries but it’s best we get used to being without him for a while now and let his body and his mind get stronger.
In my opinion he’s pretty average for a striker anyway. Hasn’t got great control, doesn’t possess a great shot and his heading is poor. Maybe Sean Dyche can eventually get the best out of him in the old fashioned sense.
Not sure who would ideally step in up front but a few repeats of the Arsenal result will do me.can Simms do the job of leading the line ?
In days of old it would be Mick Lyons being thrown up there but we don’t even have the luxury of someone like him in the squad.
Robert Leigh
7 Posted 07/02/2023 at 15:56:52
Hopefully he shakes it off and is available next Monday night, but as Tony and Pete before me state I hope Ellis Simms gets a chance.

Maupay might play well (okay) in a Brentford/Brighton type set-up, but he wouldn't suit being the target man as we all saw on Saturday. The only possibility is to play Simms therefore.

Maupay might suit being alongside him, similar to how Vydra might have played under Dyche, but even he didn't play very often.

If Dyche doesn't think Simms is ready, the old Fellaini/Cahill system of chucking a midfielder up there is up for debate? Onana or Doucoure perhaps?

Derek Knox
8 Posted 07/02/2023 at 16:12:09
Tony E @ 2,

I think Ellis Simms is a lot better than many people give him credit for. How many loan spells has he had with different clubs and he always manages to score at any given level?

We have to utilise what we have in our locker, and Simms and Maupay may just work as a pairing. I was very disappointed with Frank at times who was so reluctant to use the young subs at all.

Also saddened that Tom Cannon and Lewis Dobbin were allowed to go on loan when we were desperate for striking options ourselves.

Ajay Gopal
9 Posted 07/02/2023 at 16:29:32
I had a bad feeling that Calvert-Lewin wouldn't be available for the derby and that would be a big blow for us. He could have really given a torrid time to the (presently) very wobbly Liverpool defense. But this is a great opportunity for Simms to show what he is about.

“He has pace, he's lightning. You can give him a bad ball and he'll make it into a good ball. That's an attribute not many people have and when he gets into those positions, he can put the ball away.” Our ex-player Beni Baningime when Simms joined him at Hearts.

Or Dyche may be tempted to play Demarai Gray as our lone striker. He shouldn't change his basic 4-5-1 which served us well against Arsenal.

Eddie Dunn
10 Posted 07/02/2023 at 16:31:48

Come on, mate, cast your mind back to when you were 25. You can play 5 times a week when you're 25.

Anthony Murphy
11 Posted 07/02/2023 at 16:34:26
Could be the difference between going down or staying up. If he misses a lot of the remaining games, I think we'll struggle as Dyche's model needs a target man.

I can't believe I'm saying this, but maybe letting Rondon leave was a mistake?

Tony Abrahams
12 Posted 07/02/2023 at 16:41:00
Not a chance Eddie. You might be able to play 5 times a week, with your mates, but I think you’re really underestimating the levels required, if you believe professional footballers could play this many games in a week.
Dave Abrahams
13 Posted 07/02/2023 at 17:07:32
Dominic was taken off on Saturday as a precaution, the scan yesterday showed nothing significant, there is six days before we play Liverpool, he may miss some games during the rest of the season, there doesn’t seem to be much wrong for next Monday.

Fran Mitchell
14 Posted 07/02/2023 at 17:11:30
Also Eddie, if you've ever suffered injuries and then returned to sport, it's always there. And losing just 10% of your best fitness, at this level, is a huge difference.

The clubs failure to bring in another striking option could be fatal to our hopes. It's a huge part of our gameplan with Dyche.

At end of the day, we need 3 points more when we play Leeds, Forest, Wolves et al than against Liverpool. And I'm sure Dyche can have a gameplan I'm case of his absence. But it will be a huge miss if he doesn't make it. Hopefully, the game being on Monday and not Saturday, will give him a better chance.

Hopefully Simms will be up to the required standard, and if not, a return to good ol'days of defenders playing up top in a 4-4-2 to win aerial battles. Maybe Keane could be the new Steve Watson.

Brian Hennessy
15 Posted 07/02/2023 at 17:17:43
Exactly Dave @13. I'm backing him to be fine for Monday, to score a couple in the first half and for Dyche to take him off again in the 60 minute mark when we are 3-0 up.
Sam Hoare
16 Posted 07/02/2023 at 17:43:26
Simms is an interesting young player but, despite his size, he is really not great in the air and would struggle I think to play the role that Calvert-Lewin played last weekend.

Having a striker who can occupy central defenders, hold up the ball, and win flick-ons is crucial to the style of play Dyche implements. I worry that we don't have an effective alternative to Calvert-Lewin and if/when he succumbs to longer-term injury, it will be seriously detrimental to our survival chances.

Maybe he could use Onana or Doucoure as an alternative but I'm not sure Simms has the same skill set from what I've seen and read of him (though maybe it could be coached?).

Tony Abrahams
17 Posted 07/02/2023 at 18:21:24
Simms might not have the same skill set but he's played centre-forward for most of his life, unlike the players you have just mentioned, Sam. It was only one game, but I wouldn't want to be changing any of our three-man midfield from Saturday and hope that this is something we can build on.

We had drive, discipline, energy, and our midfielders were also cutting off the gaps, making interceptions, and generally just helping each other out, like good team players are supposed to do. Keeping Dominic fit is essential because we just don't have a replacement at the same level as him.

The more we play, the more the ball will go into the centre-forward's feet; then we will begin to develop little second and third phases in the attacking third, hopefully. Once it does start going into feet more, then this should benefit Maupay, although I'm not sure what Ellis Simms's strengths are.

Mark Ryan
18 Posted 07/02/2023 at 18:37:00

Don't go down the "Calvert-Lewin is our talisman" route. He's not and never will be… so try Simms and Maupay together up top.

Danny O’Neill
19 Posted 07/02/2023 at 18:43:37
Not at this level, Eddie, mate. And not in the modern game where they are athletes as opposed to those of the '70s and '80s who got away with it. Paul MacGrath springs to mind but there were a few in the '70s who I'm sure a few could call out.

I think many underestimate what it takes to play sport at a sustained and constant level. Especially such a high standard.

I played to a decent standard. Not the highest, but most of us had experienced trials with or playing for professional clubs.

But playing 3 games in a week even at my level required a squad and you were all knackered by the end of it with most of us carrying some kind of injury.

Dominic has literally been on his own and I suspect a victim to his physical commitment. He's broken and we need to recover him physically. It's why we shouldn't have been or continue to rely on him or we will break him more.

Step into the frame, young Simms, and show us what you can do.

Paul Elliot
20 Posted 07/02/2023 at 18:51:47
Go with Calvert-Lewin & Simms, Dom will only make 60 minutes, but that could be the edge we need.

Plus the unknown Simms; nobody in the Premier League has seen him so that alone should be an advantage, and he really could really make a name for himself.

Liverpool are struggling big time!! So I can but dream and hope for a miraculous 2-1 Win...

Andy Crooks
21 Posted 07/02/2023 at 18:55:35
"Sell him in the summer". To whom? Get shot, get rid, to whom?

The only way we can reasonably sell Calvert-Lewin is if he stays fit enough for us not to want to sell him.

There always have been on ToffeeWeb some who see injured players as swinging the lead. It's like a big HR department who want attendance aggressively managed.

I imagine any club that can afford his wages won't be taking him off our hands to take a chance on him.

Paul Elliot
22 Posted 07/02/2023 at 19:04:47
Andy 21, few years ago under Ancelotti, he was a £60M player.

As for now, if someone comes in with £25-30M, we should take it. It will be sad, but as George Harrison said "All Things Must Pass"!!

That goal against Palace was worth his weight in gold, he is just unlucky with injuries!! Someone said earlier playing the lone striker really is a killer, and takes its toll on your body, Poor Dom is now paying the price sadly...

Danny O’Neill
23 Posted 07/02/2023 at 19:06:33
I think you're right, Andy. I can't see many takers for Dominic.

Our most sellable assets now are Pickford and unfortunately Onana, even at this early stage of his Everton career. Sadly both have brilliant attitudes towards the club.

But right now, we don't meet their standards.

I just hope we keep it together. We have the makings of a squad with a blend of youth and experrience.

And now a Sergeant Major in the dugout.

Mal van Schaick
24 Posted 07/02/2023 at 19:07:47
He's been a good player in the past, but the last 18 months as we know he's been plagued by injury, and now a broken finger nail has made him a doubt for the derby, where any Everton player worth his salt would play through the pain barrier.

Sell him if he is injury-plagued or at least read the riot act and get him back on board for the remainder of the season, and then, if he wants to go, let him.

Andy Crooks
25 Posted 07/02/2023 at 19:09:37
Paul, paying £25-30 million for an injury prone player once valued at £60 million is what Everton do. Not, sadly, what well run clubs with money to spend do.
Andy Crooks
26 Posted 07/02/2023 at 19:17:33
Well, Mal, that's that sorted then. Why not read him the riot act and sell him to some club who like signing injury-prone players? Oh, shit... we already have him.

He's so accomplished at malingering that he was able to dodge the World cup. Proper thrashing is what he needs.

Robert Tressell
27 Posted 07/02/2023 at 19:20:07
More logical than getting rid of Calvert-Lewin, is to sign someone to take the pressure off. He can then make his (often very good) contribution when fit and ready.

It is highly likely we will sign that player in summer when our fortunes are clearer.

In the meantime, Dyche will figure it out. Might be a combination of Calvert-Lewin, Simms, Maupay and the midfield all making their contribution.

I think we'd all be delighted if Simms were to step up.

Colin Glassar
28 Posted 07/02/2023 at 19:26:22
Knackers yard for Dom by the sound of it.
Tony Abrahams
29 Posted 07/02/2023 at 19:29:08
We have just got in a manager who will want the ball played wide so his team can get crosses into the box and now people want to get rid of Calvert-Lewin?

Let's see what happens between now and the end of the season because I'm certain playing up front in a Sean Dyche team might just really benefit our centre-forward.

Brian Harrison
30 Posted 07/02/2023 at 19:33:39
I think v will start on Monday, reports are the scan showed nothing and the club will monitor the situation, which is what you would expect.

In fact, on Saturday against Arsenal, that's the most aggressive I have seen Calvert-Lewin in a long time. Obviously with all the injuries he has suffered in the last 12 months, it might mean he is always scared he is going to breakdown again, but I am sure Sean Dyche will be telling him how important he is and will reassure him regarding his hamstring problems.

Will Mabon
31 Posted 07/02/2023 at 19:36:32
This ongoing injury trouble is very puzzling, being as it is happening to a player that was strong and very rugged earlier, never suffering even niggles.
Eddie Dunn
32 Posted 07/02/2023 at 19:37:43

I know you played professional football (and Danny has played at a decent level) so I have to give way, but just think of our former heroes who used to play more games on terrible pitches, without the mollycoddling that the so-called elite athletes of today enjoy.

If the modern player (like Calvert-Lewin) is constantly being asked if he has any tightness etc, it could have a detrimental effect.

He has been suffering these problems for too long now and still finds himself as the only senior Number 9 in the squad. It has been ridiculous that a Wood or an Ings hasn't been snapped up in all of this time.

However, it would be good to see Simms get a start.

Lyndon Lloyd
33 Posted 07/02/2023 at 19:44:17
Will (31),

The quad injury he suffered was a very serious one. Not as bad as the one that killed Gbamin's career with us but close and both players suffered different serious injuries after they recovered from the first – Gbamin ruptured his Achilles, DCL injured his knee – and that (along with the successive niggles) could be due to a change in mechanics after being out for so long or because they're sub-consciously trying to protect the thigh that was injured before.

I've also seen it posited that his injury problems started after he bulked up so much during lockdown – all that new muscle putting strain on other parts of his body or, again, changing the mechanics of his running, etc. Who knows? I'm no physio but it's interesting.

Ray Roche
34 Posted 07/02/2023 at 19:52:50
Eddie, I think Ings has a worse injury record than DCL. Hasn’t he been ruled out for some weeks already, after only playing minutes for WHU? I haven’t checked but I think that’s the case.
Tony Abrahams
35 Posted 07/02/2023 at 20:08:45
Definitely agree that we should have more strikers on our books Eddie, and it’s a total disgrace, and also genuine mismanagement, imo, that we haven’t. We survived last season by the skin of our teeth, because we also had Richarlison, so it is definitely a worry that we haven’t got many good forwards in our squad, whilst still having major reservations over Dominic.

I’m going to bore you now Eddie, but something that has always made me fume, was not winning the FA youth cup. We were going for four cups towards the end of the season when I was playing one year, and only ended up winning the league.

We lost a semi final against Arsenal, another semifinal against Swindon, and a final against Leicester, and I’ve always blamed the stupid bastards, who took us to a tournament by coach to Metz, in France, that Easter.

I played in seven, 60 minute matches, in three or four days, and remember falling asleep twice in 5 minutes, after getting back on the coach to go through customs at Dover. I had the same dream twice, (nightmare) and it was half time in both of them!

Honestly, I remember getting back to Nottingham about 2pm, going the chippy on the way home from the ground, and then going straight to bed and sleeping until the next morning.

We blew up after that fucking ridiculous tournament, and I remember Archie Gemill, screaming at us that we were fucking shite, and completely overrated, after getting murdered 4-1 by a very average Swindon team.

We weren’t shite, we were absolutely fucking shattered, and had been on a six month unbeaten run, before some stupid bastard decided to take us to France, and I’m certain we would have finished with at least 3 out of 4 of those trophies, unless that little horrible Scottish bastard, was actually right for once!

Sorry for being boring, but that was years ago when you could actually plod through some games, but the speed is completely different nowadays imo,Eddie, and football is played at a frightening pace.

Tony Abrahams
36 Posted 07/02/2023 at 20:14:50
Very good post Lyndon. I think Dominic needs to lose a little bit of that heavy muscle, and believe the more running he does, the stronger he will slowly/quickly become. Dominic looks stiff, but I don’t expect him to look like this for long, especially if he’s now being asked to start doing a lot of short & Sharp, shuttle runs.
Jay Harris
37 Posted 07/02/2023 at 20:24:13
I find it hard to reconcile that real Evertonians are criticising Dominic for being injured.

The lad has ploughed a lone furrow for us for years, carrying the burden of a lone striker and running his body into the ground for the cause.

He is now starting to feel the niggles of that effort on young legs and deserves a bit of support and encouragement.

Like Danny and Tony I played at a decent level, signed by Tranmere at 17 but never realising the dream due to a drunk driver.

That was back in the late 60s and the game now is light years ahead of that. Faster, more technical, more physical in a different way. Be in no doubt these lads are supreme athletes and very conditioned.

Speaking of Ellis Simms he does have a goalscorers knack but he doesnt win many 50/50s and is not great in the air despite his size. He is more of a Maupay than Maupay in that I believe he is a better finisher but has a poachers instinct rather than an imtimidating presence.

Only time will tell if he can make it at this level but unfortunately IMO he reached his ceiling at championship level.

Eddie Dunn
38 Posted 07/02/2023 at 20:26:50
Ray- yes Ings hasn't got a great injury record!
Lyndon - good point on Domenic bulking-up, I have done the same but if you have a good touch, 16 and a half stone doesn't need to hamper your game!
Tony- that sounds a bit excessive. Archie wouldn't be allowed to do that these days.
By the way, when were you at Forest? I was a student at Trent Poly from '80-'83 and went to both grounds fairly often.
Barry Rathbone
39 Posted 07/02/2023 at 20:38:52
Not my cup of tea is Mr Calvert Lewin.

Very telling that the first utterance from no nonsense Dyche was to say the player is not as far removed from fitness as he thinks. Be a real boost if someone in the squad takes on the centre forward role effectively so we can bin this character.

Will Mabon
40 Posted 07/02/2023 at 20:45:31

viable suggestions, it could be any of many answers. Even with the incredible demands of the game today though, it is unusual; general vulnerability to injury usually shows earlier than this.

Maybe the mechanics thing has legs (sorry). I do know pro' cyclists can have problems if the height of their seat is out by just a few millimetres. Or perhaps the quad injury has not fully healed, which would be bad news.

I'm no physio either.

Christy Ring
41 Posted 07/02/2023 at 20:48:01
I thought Calvert-Lewin put in a great shift on Saturday for the 60 min's he played. He won most duels on his own against two centrebacks, and didn't hold back. He has plenty of knockers here, but a fit Dom makes us a stronger and more potent team. Hopefully he'll lead the line on Monday night, Simms is young but he's not as good in the air, watching him for Sunderland, he had some nice touches, but not as mobile and definitely not as agressive as Dom, and it's a huge step up to the Premiership.
Danny O’Neill
42 Posted 07/02/2023 at 20:55:01
Anyone who has suffered a Quad injury will know how difficult they are to recover from.

I broke two legs and two ankles as well as having ligament damage on the latter. They were easy to recover from.

But the Quad was the hardest to come back from. You think you're good but just break down quickly. It goes again just when you think everything is okay.

I'm not going to crucify the kid. I just want him back to his best. He's not far off. He nearly got two goals on Saturday and might do on Monday.

The blue God in Heavan willing.

Neil Copeland
43 Posted 07/02/2023 at 20:57:47
Danny, I’d much rather Dom bag 2 goals on Monday 😁
Ben King
44 Posted 07/02/2023 at 20:58:02
Conversely I’m a big fan of DCL. I think he’s given his all to the cause and also can’t believe he’s being criticised for being injured. It’s bad luck and outside the player’s hands!!!

In fact, he’s still trying to do a job for us despite (and obviously) not being fully fit. It’s immensely frustrating because it’s the area we have least depth and it’s the over reliance on Dom which has likely led to him becoming injury prone: we have no like for like replacement.

This is why I was so down on transfer deadline day: Dyche could well keep us up but he needs to be given the tools. Even 1 additional strong striker would have helped so much. But the absolutely useless cretins that run our club just couldn’t make it happen.

Good luck Dom. Get well son, we desperately need you

Dave Abrahams
45 Posted 07/02/2023 at 21:04:15
Ben (44) I think that Dominic gets undeserved stick off fans on here but I think many would also agree with your assessment of him Ben, I’m one of them for what’s it worth.
Tony Abrahams
46 Posted 07/02/2023 at 21:04:28
1986-90 Eddie, and I also used to like going to Meadow lane, if I couldn’t get home for the weekend, and Forest were playing away. But that wasn’t excessive Eddie, that was actually normality, in those days.

Looking back we were very disciplined, and this is the schooling that gave Everton’s current manager, and his two mates, their introduction into professional football.

It’s stood them in great stead, I’m sure, and although it’s early days, Saturday was the most disciplined Everton performance I’ve seen since the days of Carlo Ancelotti? I just hope it continues

Neil Copeland
47 Posted 07/02/2023 at 21:05:30
Ben #44, well said
Dave Abrahams
48 Posted 07/02/2023 at 21:08:27
Tony (46), surely those amount of games you played only happened when Forest went abroad and played in those youth tournaments?
Danny O’Neill
49 Posted 07/02/2023 at 21:10:45
Neil, we're marching onto that cesspit on Monday.

Let's hope Dom puts a couple in the bag!

Come on Everton. We love, live and breathe you.

Neil Copeland
50 Posted 07/02/2023 at 21:13:02
Danny, absolutely mate. We demonstrated on Saturday that on our day, we can, not just beat, but also compete with anyone.
Tony Everan
51 Posted 07/02/2023 at 21:28:09
Our Lewis Warrington hopefully heading into the FA Cup 5th round, beating Sheffield Wednesday. He’s getting some great experience in this season.
Will Mabon
52 Posted 07/02/2023 at 21:28:24
That's it, Neil - can't always beat, but can always compete, on any day.
Neil Copeland
53 Posted 07/02/2023 at 21:35:37
Will, it should be the minimum we can expect. Hopefully Sean Dyche will get a better return than his predecessors.
Jim Burns
54 Posted 07/02/2023 at 21:47:39
Dave at 13 - I agree. Keeping the RS guessing ain't such a bad idea and I think he'll be fit enough to start.

Maupay for all his lack of goals and pace could be the sort of niggly irritant we need against them but I'd love to see Ellis thrown in at some point baptism of fire and all that.

David Cooper
55 Posted 07/02/2023 at 2023/02/07 : 21:50:46
Just over 2 years ago Burnley stopped Liverpool dead in their 58 unbeaten game run at Anfield. Sean shares his tactics on that day in this video and you can listen to him for 20 minutes explaining his game plan, which he might use again come next Monday:

After listening and watching him move discs around on his tactics board, it resembles what he used last weekend against Arsenal.

His key phrase is “Crunch the Play” which is another way of saying of pressing and condensing the area where the ball is. In his description he talks about how important Tarkowski and McNeil are in delivering his tactics.

Finally I get the feeling we might see more of Maupay for his disruptive style of play. Dyche had that pest Ashley Barnes do that job at Burnley. I wouldn't be surprised if we signed that little shit in the summer!

Christy Ring
56 Posted 07/02/2023 at 22:00:25
Ben#44 Great point, as you say the criticism on here is unjustified, because it's the one area of the team where we have no depth whatsoever. It's the one position where the board have let us down, especially after selling Richarlison. We're over reliant on Dom, fans seem to forget this, it's awhile since he was completely injury free, even at the start of last season, Benitez played him when he was carrying an injury.
Ray Smith
57 Posted 07/02/2023 at 22:52:01
Great result last week in an open attacking format from both sides. Likewise Man City.
Our test will come, when the bottom half clubs shut up shop. However Sean has been there and done it.
Breaking down 11 behind the ball we are yet to see (it’s only one open attacking game), however, Sean has been there year after year, so, onwards and upwards👍👍👍
Fran Mitchell
58 Posted 07/02/2023 at 23:00:41
Sell him in the summer, take the money and run, sell and replace.

Cause that's what we'll do, right?

Proven that with Arteta, Stones, Lukaku, Richy and now Gordon. We sell and we use the money to sign better more reliable players.


Tom Bowers
59 Posted 07/02/2023 at 23:01:34
This is not what we want at this time. I feel for DCL who after looking a real threat two seasons back has been plagued with injuries that has undoubtedly affected a lot of Everton results.

Yes, Everton failed to get good back up for his position and what's left now doesn't appear to be favourable.

There is only Ellis Simms who may not be the answer but who else is there..

If DCL has a hamstring then they had better start playing the ball along the ground more instead of swinging in high balls or long punts downfield.

Having said that they could throw Onana up front (haha).

Seriously though, we all wish him well and hope he is okay for. the Derby

Tony Everan
60 Posted 07/02/2023 at 23:35:44
Ben, Christy, Good posts. Failure to get quality back up in the summer, then again in January is where the problem lies. The developing Dominic was overused after we spectacularly failed to replace Lukaku and I think part of his injury isssues are as a result of those heroic efforts. I’m praying he gradually gets back to his best and fully support him.
Paul Kossoff
61 Posted 07/02/2023 at 23:53:04
It's always the same with those red bastards, not just Everton but near every team they play has injuries or suspension's.
I just hope we continue the poor form they are in by beating them. Coyb. Off topic, if Kenwright had sold us to the Arabs we would be in more shit than we are, and you can bet they would have thrown not just the book at us but the whole frigging library.
Geoff Lambert
62 Posted 08/02/2023 at 00:25:03
It's all in his mind, Should be good for 15 games a season if he feels like it. Needs replacing ASAP or like 6 months ago.
Mark Taylor
63 Posted 08/02/2023 at 01:27:34
I've nothing against DCL, he's not a great striker but at his peak, he's plenty good enough for us at out recent level. But he is turning into a Darren Anderton type biscuit, breaks on contact.

It's easy to say sell him but who pays big money for a crocked striker, even when they are in short supply, even more so if English?

If anyone offered £50m, I'd bite their hand off right now, but they won't. Not unless he's proved he can play regularly, at which point, we might as well keep him, given we don't exactly have a great record at spending wisely and he's not all that bad.

Tony Abrahams
64 Posted 08/02/2023 at 07:39:59
David@55, I watched one of those videos the other day and my feelings were, who are you trying to convince Dychey? Keep it between yourself and your players Sean, because you know what you’re doing, and your players are the only people, that you should have to show stuff like this. This is the advice that I would be giving him!

It was apparent after about twenty minutes on Saturday, that any bad touch in the midfield area, would not go unpunished, and this was the key to Everton looking like a completely different team imo.

Discipline is key, and when discipline is applied with intelligence, then suddenly nobody will be looking forward to playing against you. Hopefully Everton being a soft touch is going to disappear, and Anfield would be the perfect place for us to demonstrate this🤞

Mal van Schaick
65 Posted 08/02/2023 at 07:59:00
Andy at #26. So, it doesn’t matter if our club is in a precarious position at the foot of the league, in jeopardy of relegation, and we have players who could be up for the battle but appear to put themselves first, instead of being up for the fight, get themselves fit and aid the cause.
Jim Lloyd
66 Posted 08/02/2023 at 08:34:40
I'm not the greatest supporter of DCL as a goalscoring centre forward. I think he's pretty good at getting on the end of crosses. Whether his attempts go in or not is another matter. I look at someone like Kane and he's a proper centre forward.

However, it looks like we're now going to give him the support he needs to be his most effective. On Saturday, he could have had 3 goals with some great crosses coming him to give him those chances. McNeill was doing brilliant in sending in crosses. I think, if he can stay fit, DCL will sharpen up and will put more of those chances away. That's where he's most effective.

The first season Digne was here and for the first half of that season, it seemed to me that Dom scored most of his goals. 2nd half, teams had cottoned on to Digne and the supply was more limited.

On Saturday, we had crosses coming from both wings and headed chances and Onana's great run and cross on the deck all gave Dom chances. He looked faster than he did in his last game, where it seemed to me he was playing well within himself. (understandable)

On Saturday he was a smidgeon from scoring a hat trick against the league leaders! So, although I don't rate him as a goalscorer of the highest order. He can help win us matches. So while he's playing for Everton, he's our centre forward and a decent player. Until, and if, we get a more prolific C/F, we use him the most effective way; and I think Sean Dyche will

As for Maupay, he gets a lot of stick, but he's one of our players! Therefore, I'll support him. I think he can be more effective, he's scored goals in previous seasons, so we need to find a way of giving him the best chance to do so again. Mind you, I was made up the way he kept Arsenal's defence really wound up and occupied, with one of them deserving to be sent off.

My view is, all the players we've got, might well be called on to play. Injuries and suspensions are going to come along. We're not likely to bring any more in so, like Saturday, all our players will pull their tripes out, Sean Dyche will not stand for any less. from anyone. That'll do for me.

Danny O’Neill
67 Posted 08/02/2023 at 08:56:03
Good post and assessment that Jim.

I've repeatedly said that Dominic is limited, but can be effective if he gets the right supply.

He missed Digne when he was out and Digne missed him having nothing to aim for when Dominic was out.

He is an in the box striker who needs good delivery and as you call out, McNeil can do that. With a bit of sharpness, he could have bagged at least a brace on Saturday. Let's get him back to full fitness.

Kane reminds me so much of Graeme Sharp, who I've fallen out with right now. Complete striker. In the box, in the air, but could also stoke the odd 25 yarder. I doubt you get that from Calvert-Lewin.

If Dominic can come close to that moment on Monday night, he becomes a legend. I won't just be ecstatic. I will be beside myself with sheer joy.

McNeil to do a Sheedy free kick moment in front of that horrible place.

I think I'm getting carried away.

Andy Crooks
68 Posted 08/02/2023 at 09:02:10
Mal @ 65, I have not heard or read of anyone at the club, including the coach, suggest that DCL is not up for the fight, is not getting himself fit or could be up for a battle but isn't. That is pure conjecture on your part.
What I have seen is highly regarded international player with the chance of playing at a world cup have his career put on hold due to a series of injuries. Now, that is not conjecture.
You imply that this player is malingering, well, actually you don't imply it, you say it. Prove it.
Paul Cherrington
69 Posted 08/02/2023 at 09:20:03
Shame to see DCL with injury concerns again - hope he is ok for the next game and rest of season. It's a mystery for me in terms of his constant injury issues recently, as his record before then was pretty good as I recall.

Makes you wonder why he is picking up so many now but never used too?

Not sure I would sell him right now tbh but it's clear we need a top-class alternative to come into the team moving ahead, if he is going to miss a bunch of games each season. Relying on one player to succeed is never a good idea, especially with how few games he has played lately overall.

I think Simms is a good shout for now and deserves his chance to show what he can do for the rest of the season. If he does well, then we have the back-up we need (and also proper competition for DCL even when fit). If he doesn't, we look for a striker in the summer.

We must start giving the best young players a chance to make it in the first team and Simms has shown via his loan spells what talent he has.

Ray Roche
70 Posted 08/02/2023 at 09:27:34
You say
‘ We sell and we use the money to sign better more reliable players.’
Well, the Arteta money vanished down the back of Bill’s sofa, Lukaku wasn’t replaced, Richie bought Maupay for us and Gordon’s money is cuddling up to Arteta’s.
Now, you were saying?
Jim Lloyd
71 Posted 08/02/2023 at 09:30:24
Get carried away Danny! McNeill? It was like a different player in his shirt! and if he does a Sheeds right in front of the Devil's cauldron, then we'll all be going bonkers! I think he can do it an all! He's only 23 as well. I couldn't believe it and I think he will develop into a really good player.

Mal, why do you think any player would want to give up the chance of getting paid a fortune to do something he loves. He's a young man with a potentially long career ahead, and he'd risk that by feigning injury. Give our lads a chance. It's mor likely his major probem now is the fear he'll break down again if he tries to give his all. So he'll play within himself until he can prove to himself, he's over that injury. I think you've beenm a bit unfair mate.

Christy Ring
72 Posted 08/02/2023 at 13:48:39
Mal#65 Looking at Calvert-Lewin for an hour on Saturday against Arsenal, and the commitment and effort he put in, if you think that's a player minding himself, and not putting the club first, you're looking at him with tinted glasses.
Daniel A Johnson
73 Posted 08/02/2023 at 19:36:05
If this guy can't get properly fit then he has to be moved on. We can't base our attack on the hope DCL can string more than 5 matches together. His lack of fitness and our inability to find another striker seriously handicaps us.
Andy Crooks
74 Posted 08/02/2023 at 21:56:08
Daniel, moved on to where?

God almighty, what makes anyone think that we can "move on" anyone? Imagine you are Director of Football at say, well.. any club in the world.

"See Everton are "moving on" Calvert-Lewin. Hang on, he was a great prospect, must be really injury-prone on big wages. Yep, we'll offer £25 million."

Just getting this off my chest ( or the last time). But... there should be a ban on anyone suggesting we get rid of dead wood (not that Calvert-Lewin is any such thing). We BUY dead wood. (Delph, Delph, Delph) We buy injury-prone players in the hope of a miracle; we don't sell them.

If Calvert-Lewin becomes ready to be "moved on", it will be when we want to keep him or a club more gullible than us appears from nowhere. Forest might be an option.

Daniel A Johnson
75 Posted 08/02/2023 at 22:00:21
How many times Andy are we going to try and reintegrate Calvert-Lewin only for him to have x matches out again?

We simply can't rely on him right now to string a meaningful amount of matches together.

Barry Jones
76 Posted 08/02/2023 at 00:00:02
I thought that all of the players looked reinvigorated last Saturday. We got players forward in numbers for a change. I think that just like from the manager, the players need to start with a clean sheet from us too.
Charles Brewer
77 Posted 09/02/2023 at 10:16:22
The other evening, my son came round and suggested we watch the Sheffield United - Wrexham replay. We’d missed the first half, but the second was the most enjoyable match (Everton matches are almost never enjoyable to me) 8’ve seen since the World Cup final, and that was,I think, the best match I’ve ever seen,

But the two things that most impressed me were the “fuck the media love-in” attitude of the Sheffield United captain Billy Sharp, and the Wrexham lad (Mullin) who scored one penalty, missed another and despite being obviously injured insisted on going back onto the pitch until he really couldn’t play any more.

Both showed the attitude of players with a fierce will-to-win, committment well beyond the “my mental health may suffer if I stay on after I’ve missed a penalty” or “someone in the crowd shouted something nasty (but true) at me”, or “I’ve run about a bit, now I’m tired and somebody waved their arm near my face”.

This is the attitude that Dyche must bring to Everton, we’ve still got Coleman,who’s playing superbly well past his sell-by date, Tom Davies is still loved by much of the crowd for his attitude and refusal to hide even when he is way off form and having a stinker, and I suspect there is some decent steel in the likes of McNeil, Tarkovsky and Coady.

A bit more of the “fuck the media” attitude of Billy Sharp, and a bit more of the “I’m a young man who can take a bit of stick - and give it back” of Mullin will see Everton on a proper course once more.


Dave Abrahams
78 Posted 09/02/2023 at 10:33:14
Charles (77),

In other words, “ Give us our old game back this one stinks”.

Loved your last line – a musical could be made of that line, I wonder if Kenwright could produce it.

Stephen Davies
79 Posted 09/02/2023 at 18:11:00
His niggle is more than a concern... he's a major doubt for Monday – hasn't trained all week.
Brian Harrison
80 Posted 09/02/2023 at 19:58:16
Really disappointing to hear that Dominic Calvert-Lewin is a major doubt for Monday. Apparently he hasn't trained all week.

The scan showed no damage but he is still complaining of stiffness in his hamstring. I wonder if this is ever going to get any better or if he will end up with less games than Mina?

Tony Abrahams
81 Posted 09/02/2023 at 20:11:33
The rest might actually do him good, Brian. He's probably been getting wrapped up in cotton wool, and getting treated with kid gloves, under the old regime (because he's the only real forward we have that can occupy the opposition). Then along came Dyche and got him really working, so this might even have been expected?

We will see… but it's sad that a lot of our hopes are resting on a centre-forward who hasn't been properly fit for around 18 months and also very, very worrying.

Kieran Kinsella
82 Posted 09/02/2023 at 20:12:56

The problem is we'd have to cough up £15 million to terminate his contract. I guess the club hope he can play a few games here and there or maybe sell for a nominal sum, £500,000 or so in the summer.

Barry Hesketh
83 Posted 09/02/2023 at 20:17:24
I would have liked Dominic to be fit for Monday, however, it's probably more important that he's fit for the Leeds match. Last night, Man Utd put lots of crosses into the Leeds box and they didn't respond too well.

I'm sure that Maupay will be in the team alongside Gray on Monday – Maupay can wind them up and, who knows, score an actual goal, and Gray can go at their defence. I can also see Dwight McNeil sitting on the bench on Monday.

Ernie Baywood
84 Posted 09/02/2023 at 20:26:34
As others have said, if you've never had a quad injury, then you'll struggle to relate. It's a real prick of an injury. I called the seriousness of this on here as soon as I saw him injured the first time on the pitch — commentators were suggesting knee but, if you knew, you knew.

It all seems pretty minor but, every time you think you're fine again, it fails under pressure or when you make an unusual movement. And every failure is right back to square one.
Then you get niggles everywhere because you end up basically doing nothing, trying to give it time to repair. And play within yourself because you've got no confidence it won't go again the next time you stretch yourself.

Everything I see in Dom is completely relatable.

We seemingly did the right thing and eventually gave him a long rest but then brought him back at the end of the season out of necessity. Ideally he'd have been given a long rest and then a clean slate for the new pre-season.

We're now in a position of needing him again. Whether you rate him or not, I don't see how we stay up without him.

TLDR: Don't blame Dom – he's been playing when he shouldn't have. Blame the recruitment that has left him as our only decent striker

Tony Abrahams
85 Posted 09/02/2023 at 21:06:55
I've never had such a bad injury Ernie, but anyone who has done their quad always says how bad of an injury that it is.

I'm curious because, when I look at Dominic, I think he looks very stiff, like a lad who's spent way too much time in the gym. So the question I want to ask is: What is the best remedy once you have recovered from this type of injury?

It wouldn't surprise me if Dominic has been doing a lot of running away from the team this week. But maybe this is just wishful thinking on my part because I think it's imperative that we get the kid fit.

The logic behind this is that he doesn't need a ball to get fit, and he might actually be better training without it for a little bit.

Nick Page
86 Posted 09/02/2023 at 21:14:30
He should be doing yoga, Tony. Needs a good teacher
Tony Abrahams
87 Posted 09/02/2023 at 21:20:16
I always thought running was a lot less painful than stretching, Nick, and I don't half suffer for it now!

If Dominic's scan showed nothing, then surely he must be doing a lot of running and stretching? These are the two things that he definitely needs to be doing to get ready for those red bastards!

Ernie Baywood
88 Posted 10/02/2023 at 04:17:44
Short answer, Tony, I don't know.

If he's not reporting any more quad issues, then it's probably just a case of getting him through the niggles. Ease him back in, slowly build him up to being able to withstand the rigors of 90 minutes and training every week.

Would probably be a bit short-sighted to roll him out again on Monday if he's got a hamstring issue but, with less than half a season to go, we have to be pretty short-sighted.

Barry Hesketh
89 Posted 10/02/2023 at 11:33:45
Since 2020, Calvert-Lewin has played 2022 minutes of football for Everton [equivalent of 22 games] out of a possible 76 games [6840 mins]. In effect, he has been available for 1 game every 3.5 games. — Source: Toffee Transfers

Yet, the club wonders why there are protests against the people who are responsible for the major decisions, like transfers etc?

Of course, they can't foresee injuries to key players, but the fact that they've sold two players who could find the net, and bought one who doesn't appear to know where the goal is, plus he's a completely different type of player to Dominic, tells us that they haven't got a clue about football.

Tony Abrahams
90 Posted 10/02/2023 at 12:08:26
The lack of foresight in the last transfer window could come back and bite us very badly if Calvert-Lewin continues to struggle with injuries. Dominic really is that important to the immediate future of Everton Football Club, right now.

It was only when him and Yerry Mina got injured after a few games last season, did the trouble begin for Benitez, because he had got us off to a decent start.

After reading Ernie's description of a very serious injury, then Calvert-Lewin, has simply got to have enough confidence in his body to learn to run again. His little spin during the second half was a good sign, even if he was lucky that Everton retained possession!

Andy Crooks
91 Posted 10/02/2023 at 21:02:01
Spot on, Barry Hesketh
Mark Andrews
92 Posted 14/02/2023 at 09:17:10
Ray Charles could see that we needed a striker last season, Everton's board decided to sell instead. They decided to rely on a man who is, unfortunately, catastrophically injury-prone.

The Chuckle Brothers could make a better fist of running our club and poor old Barry Chuckle is dead.

“To me, to the Championship.”

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