After a brilliant weekend in which Everton didn’t play *fist pump* and we reclaimed the ‘Your Derby win meant nothing’ Cup courtesy of West Brom, Everton are back in action on Wednesday night as we take on Leicester City at Goodison Park.
Despite only two-league positions separating the two sides, the velocity of both sides couldn’t be more different. Leicester come to Goodison in great form with just the one defeat in seven and just three goals conceded. Meanwhile it’s no win in seven for the Toffees, with eleven goals conceded and just four scored. As if that wasn’t gloomy enough, Everton’s poor run of form leaves them just five points clear of the bottom three and dangerously close to being sucked back into a relegation battle. The arithmetic’s of the circumstances don’t ease our fears …. (can’t score + can’t defend = ah shit). There is an underlying assurance that we should be fine given the fact that, despite this circus act of a season, Everton still sit 9th in the league. However, the reality is that those below us now seems to be hitting form just as we seem to be hitting the floor.
Never fear, after all, this was just the eventuality we planned for when we scarified our self-worth, ambitions and all-round football enjoyment to bring in ‘Fireman Sam’. Sadly, Allardyce doesn’t look like the Premier League saviour he was touted to be. In fact, Allardyce, along with best buddy Steve Walsh, seem to be throwing petrol on an already burning ship. As the January transfer window comes to close, Everton are still without a left-footed left-back. Reports suggest Manchester City’s Eliaquim Mangala is being lined up on a ‘short-team loan deal’…… how very Everton 2011-esque. Whilst Sandro Ramirez has been shipped out on loan to Sevilla and Davvy Klaassen looks to be heading to Napoli, thankfully just on a loan deal too. Neither player has particularly excelled in their brief minutes on the pitch this year but failing to give either a proper run in a piss-poor side has been criminal.
There is a shiny diamond amongst this current Everton shaped heap of shit which comes in the form of a return to the squad for Seamus Coleman. After featuring for the U23 side last week, Allardyce has confirmed the Irishman will be in the squad on Wednesday. Having seemingly grew overnight from an impressive youngster to a senior member of the squad, the now 29-year-old will no doubt be eager to make up for lost time after such a lengthy spell on the side-lines. Oh and how Everton need him. One of Everton’s most impressive offensive tools was their ability to attack through the wingback positions thanks to the capabilities of Coleman and Baines. With Coleman injured for the entirety of this season thus far, and Baines’s age catching up on him, Everton have struggled to replicate this threat through Kenny and Martina. Along with Coleman, Luke Garbutt is expected to make his long overdue return to the side. He has spent a barren spell in the shadows, but it seems impressive displays for the U23’s has opened the door again for Garbutt to feature for this first-team.
Everton will be boosted by the imminent departure of Riyad Mahrez to Manchester City, however long-term Everton target Jamie Vardy remains a threat. He has scored three goals in his last three against Everton. In truth, Everton’s record hasn’t been great against the Foxes, but they have won two of their last three Premier League games, which is as many as their previous 15 combined.
We thought our season was finished at Anfield, but a defeat on Wednesday and it looks like this nightmare could be far from over. Our season so far already resembles a shit night out, we’ve blew a load of money, we’ve been kicked out of every decent club and we’re stuck with a fatty. We don’t need no fights outside the kebab shop when trying to get a taxi home. Therefore, hopefully Everton can start winning games again and bring this season to a close in a worry-free manner, starting with Leicester on Wednesday night.