29/09/2023 13comments  |  Jump to last
Everton U21s 1 - 1 Arsenal U21s

Everton U21s finish a busy week with a home draw against Arsenal U21s in Premier League 2 – their last match for almost a month.

They have a long break in the fixture list ahead of them before they play Athletic in the Premier League International Cup at Walton Hall Park in the last week of October. 

Katia Kouyate had a tremendous opportunity to score in the first minute but he took the wrong option from close range and tried to beat the keeper high rather than slotting it low and hit the bar!

Okoronkwo had a chance too but he tried a chip rather than striking the ball with power. Metcalfe then fired in from 25 yards but a routine save for the Arsenal keeper. 

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Arsenal went ahead after the break but the Blues got a late goal through Bradley Moonan to secure a point.

Everton U21s:  Crellin, Dixon, Hunt, Astley (65' Moonan), Campbell, Butterfield, John (46' Heath), Onyango (80' Higgins), Okoronkwo (91' J Patterson), Metcalfe, Kouyate.

Subs not Used: Barrett.


Reader Comments (13)

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Brent Stephens
1 Posted 29/09/2023 at 20:54:05
After a first half in which Everton dominated but failed to convert a host of chances, Arsenal came out much better in the second half and took the lead with a shot inside the penalty area. Arsenal also hit the bar before, in the 85th minute, centre back Moonan headed in from a corner.

Metcalfe had another good game in midfield, as did the pacey Dixon at right-back. Better decision-making by Okoronkwo and Kouyate in front of goal and Everton would have won this.

Dave Abrahams
2 Posted 29/09/2023 at 21:05:07
A very good headed goal from Moonan who was determined to get to the ball and head home, I missed the first half an hour but was mostly bored stiff by the fare offered up. I thought Arsenal were the better and much fitter team, Everton U21s never seem to have any sort of game plan, a lot of hoof balls up the field to no one.

I think Hunt is wasted as a full back, he has the skill to do better in central midfield, Metcalfe is another who looks like he could have a chance. Okoronkwo can play better than he did tonight but it's hard slog upfront on his own, so it's a point earned to add to the others we have gained.

Robert Tressell
3 Posted 29/09/2023 at 22:15:15
I only caught about the first hour on and off. From what I saw, neither side looked great with the ball. I thought Onyango managed some good driving runs and also won the ball back effectively. He seems to have come on since last playing at this level - and his physique obviously helps him a lot. I wouldn't be surprised to see him get first-team minutes when Gueye and Doucoure go to AFCON.

Otherwise, there's a few players I've been hoping to see really shine – Metcalfe, Kouyate and Okoronkwo – but none of them really stood out.

Same goes for Arsenal mind you though, so it might be that they just pressed each other very hard and it killed the game a bit.

Philip Metcalfe
4 Posted 29/09/2023 at 22:31:32
#3, you must've watched a different game than me.

Metcalfe was by far the best player on the pitch.

Phil (Kelsall) Roberts
5 Posted 29/09/2023 at 22:39:00
#4 - not related are you?
Philip Metcalfe
6 Posted 29/09/2023 at 22:43:07
Robert Tressell
7 Posted 29/09/2023 at 23:01:53
I was watching the game on and off and probably not taking it all in Philip. Very pleased if Metcalfe actually played better. I did think Onyango had come on though – which you'd probably expect after a couple of loans.
Dave Abrahams
8 Posted 30/09/2023 at 08:55:47
Robert (3and7), I don’t like to knock young players but Insee no improvement in Onyango since I first saw him when he was sixteen, he did make a couple of decent runs but he never seems to have the ball under his control, a bit like Doucoure, I think his loan was cut short at Forest Green through injury not sure where his other loan was at. Being honest I think it’s a huge gamble to play him in the first team any time soon, at his age he should be running these U21’s team games, I thought he was anonymous for most of the game, although his physicality is a standout he doesn’t make a lot of use of it.
Tony Everan
9 Posted 30/09/2023 at 10:46:07
Dave, he was at Burton Albion, and did just ok, here’s a brief thought from a local rag.

“He has not been a revelation as yet but since being given a run in the side by Maamria in the last few weeks, Onyango has started to show why his parent club think so highly of him. He is combative, he gets a long leg in when he looks like he is not favourite to win the ball and he gets forward seeking space and incisive runs. That makes him, so far, the most successful of this season’s five.” ( they rated him the best out of the five young loanees they had at the time)

For him to make the grade at PL level maybe another loan would be best for his development. He needs to make a big impact at a lower level club to have a chance. A bit like the way Garner caught the eye on loan at Nottingham Forest.

Dave Abrahams
10 Posted 30/09/2023 at 11:52:58
Tony (9), Thanks for that Tony,it’s all about opinions, Onyango came on against Chelsea for the last few minutes plus added time in the 1-1 draw at Stamford Bridge so Benitez trusted him,so he had potential then, two years ago, his size has a lot to do with that not sure he has the ability but time will tell.
Robert Tressell
11 Posted 30/09/2023 at 11:55:03
Dave, that's right - not particularly auspicious loans at either Forest Green or Burton but still outside of the bubble of youth football. So possibly character building / maturing influence anyway. The reason I think he might get minutes this season is primarily because his physique is ready for it - he's probably not as rounded a footballer as Warrington or Metcalfe. I get the impression the club rates him too - which maybe means he does what he's told tactically and will be able to help us retain a good defensive structure and just pass the ball simply when he gets it.

He's not in the same league as Garner though and no loan will bridge the gap. Garner was highly rated at Man Utd as a possible heir to Carrick for some time, and he had a good loan at Watford before his loan to Forest (as well consistent England youth recognition through all the age groups). I was surprised Man Utd sold him in many ways - as he would have helped knit the midfield together alongside Casemiro and Fernandes. Maybe not a glamorous enough name.

Dave Abrahams
12 Posted 30/09/2023 at 12:13:25
Robert (11),Right on the ball there Robert about James Garner, what a deal Thelwell did there signing him, for £12M !! Early days but he could be a daylight robbery as big as Johnny Morrissey!
Tony Everan
13 Posted 30/09/2023 at 13:18:41
Dave, Robert, a steal indeed, £9m was the initial fee plus add ons. Just a few weeks ago there were a few comments around saying ‘I just don’t see what all the positivity is about Garner or what he brings to the team’. With having in-law connections to Forest I followed him throughout his loan there and commenting frequently here about hoping we would sign him from the Christmas before we did. I was delighted Ten Hag overlooked him and then we got it over the line.

With regards Onyango, he has to prove he is good enough and he hasn’t done that as yet, but will need opportunities to try.

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