PREVIEW | Aston Villa v Everton

Everton had an xG of 2.93 last weekend versus Fulham. That is the highest of any team in the Premier League last season WITHOUT SCORING. It is hard to be positive after a match like that – the chances are there – but we need someone to finish those prime chances.

Dominic Calvert-Lewin looks to make his return this Sunday. “Dominic Calvert-Lewin is in good shape, he managed to play 90 minutes in the week and he’s now straight in my thinking,” said Dyche. Everton are a completely different team when Dom starts, a dangerous team in my opinion.

Sean Dyche played a 4-4-1-1 last weekend with Maupay as the lone striker. Look for him to play a similar formation with Dom available. As you’d expect, Everton had the lower of the two teams in possession, 40% that is. Even with Fulham having the higher amount of possession, Everton was the team to walk away with the most shots, 19 in total.

As for Aston Villa, the weekend went even worse for them, losing 5-1 to Newcastle. Tyrone Mings suffered a significant knee injury early in last weekend’s match, so he will miss a good chunk of time. Pau Torres looks to make his first Premier League start with Mings out. He will slot in next to Konsa in Emery’s 4-4-2. Leon Bailey, Leander Dendocker and Jacob Ramsey are also likely to miss the upcoming match against Everton.

Newcastle took advantage of Villa’s high line and punished the Villain’s with their intense press and put away their chances. Everton should look to do the same. Dom can run onto long balls or create hold up play for the speed and blitzkrieg-like attack that we can create with our fluid midfield. Iwobi was a man possessed last match, he looked to be the creative force on the pitch for the Blues. Look for Iwobi to be the cog that moves the team into the attacking third.

Villa’s home form is not one to be doubted, gaining an astounding 12 home wins while Everton could only muster 2 away wins. We Blues know Everton away from home is a different team than when we are at home, a drastically different team that is. We hope to see a dissimilar Everton side play Sunday.

I do not see either side changing much in the way of formation. Emery will lay out his 4-4-2 and defend very tight as a unit, similar to how Fulham defended last week. Villa will look to push Everton out to the flanks instead of letting them channel much directly into the middle.

Villa prefers to be pressed highly, in order to play into trigger passes, they welcome the press to play into space. Playing a triangle shape in the back after being played out by Martinez. Everton will play a low-block and allow Villa to do what they may with the ball when they have possession. The objective is to not allow Villa to play in from the wings, or to cut off their dangerous crosses and balls in from the outs.

Everton will have a major task on their hands this Sunday. They can walk away with a result if they stay compact, patient and most importantly, clinical. Unlike Newcastle, I do not see Everton putting 13 shots on target. Dyche ball works in mysterious ways, one shot is enough to get a 1-0 win away. A corner, a free kick or a beautiful build up from open-play, the Toffees will squeeze out a result this weekend. UTFT

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