The third round of the Carabao Cup is set to take place on the 27th against Aston Villa at Villa Park. After our massive win away at the weekend, can we keep the wheels turning?
Everton claimed all three points at the weekend with a Dyche masterclass. We went on to score three goals! Crazy, right? Doucoure, who I predicted would be our key player, was awarded Man of The Match. He scored first with an excellent volley, and James Tarkowski and Dominic Calvert-Lewin would join him on the score sheet. It would be 1-1 at the half but Dyche would make key adjustments that changed the game in our favor. We finally looked the better team and left with the points to prove it.
Aston Villa, who played Chelsea at the weekend, would also take all three points. A well-taken shot by Ollie Watkins would finally beat Robert Sanchez although Sanchez was fantastic on the day. It was a very entertaining match for the neutral as Villa looked to be in control for the vast majority of the match. Chelsea is the struggling side but a challenging team to play nonetheless.
Everton’s key player for this upcoming match is the man himself, Jordan Pickford. It’s tough to predict how Dyche will set his team up for this cup match, but I’m sure J.P. will be between the sticks. Aston Villa are typically a clinical side and will have their fair share of chances. Dyche on the other hand might not play his strongest 11, so that will leave some deficiencies within our team. Pickford has a save percentage of 68, not a fantastic statistic to look at, but you can be assured he will be busy and will be the difference on Wednesday.
Aston Villa’s key player for this upcoming match should be Ollie Watkins. This match plays into his strengths well, assuming Dyche doesn’t go with his usual back four. Ollie Watkins has one goal and two assists thus far in the Premier League through 498 minutes. He causes lots of trouble for slow defenses and defenders who are not situationally aware (Michael Keane and Ben Godfrey). Diaby and Ginn will stretch the midfield which will allow Watkins to make plenty of dangerous runs that will test our back four tremendously.
Unai Emery’s game plan is to control the midfield and defend very compactly. Playing in that manner pushes the opposition out wide and limits their chances to attack the goal directly. Dyche ball did not work last time these two teams met – Villa defeated Everton 4-0 early in the season. Dyche has had more time to perfect his ideology with this team and with the return of a healthy Calvert-Lewin and the addition of a striker with Beto’s skill set, this game should look much different.
Personally, a deep cup run could hurt the season more than help. Of course I always want the lads to do well and win, but a comfortable survival is and should be the main objective. If Dyche goes all in for the cup match tomorrow and does well or even wins the match, that momentum would be huge for the next two matches against Luton and Bournemouth. Getting in form and finding a rhythm will do wonders for us. UTFT.