Koeman thrilled with Blues' response to 'crazy' opening

Sunday 9 April 2017  12 Comments  [Jump to last]

Ronald Koeman was content to put aside a madcap opening to today's home clash with Leicester after seeing his team recover impressively to retake the lead and win 4-2.

The Blues scored after just 30 seconds for the second time this year, Tom Davies equalling Romelu Lukaku's strike against Bournemouth and Pedro's against Manchester United for Chelsea as the joint-fastest Premier League goals of the season when he fired home impressively following Kevin Mirallas's surging run.

Leicester scored twice in six minutes to turn the match on his its head but goals from Romelu Lukaku and Phil Jagielka swung the pendulum back in Everton's favour before half time and Lukaku sealed it with his second in the 58th minute.

Koeman admitted that he didn't like seeing his side concede twice so quickly and so early but he was pleased with the response.

“It was a crazy ten minutes in the game,” the Dutchman said. “1-0 up, 2-1 down and, okay, 2-2 after 20 minutes it was not what we expect at the beginning.

“Yes, [we expected] to score the goals but not to concede two goals in 10 minutes but I think we played some fantastic football in the first half to go 3-2 up.

“And after [going 4-2 ahead] I think we were really clever in the way we controlled the game, to dominate the game with some good ball possession and we were really comfortable in the game.”

The manager was asked to reflect on Lukaku whose two goals extended his lead as the division's top scorer on 23 goals and pressed his claims to be in the reckoning for Premier League player of the season.

“He is one of the best strikers in the world,” Koeman said. “I think the boy is improving in different aspects. I can't change the boy in how you need to finish opportunities and score goals because, in my opinion, he's the best.

“But in other aspects he is improving and that is what we need is and what the team needs.”

 

Reader Comments (12)

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Jim Bennings
1 Posted 09/04/2017 at 20:07:06
Can't argue with a madcap start as long as you win the game, it was the madcap games last season that we kept losing or drawing: Stoke, Leicester, West Ham all winning five plus goal thrillers.

This season there has been great value for money at Goodison Park and our goalscoring has been very very satisfying since the turn of the year on our own turf.

After the last two season's when we were very very mediocre and relatively easy to beat at Goodison, I'm rather proud that we have made it a hard place to come again, a feared venue for opponents.

We just need to get the balance right away from home next term, or even better improve by winning at least two more on the road this season.

Colin Glassar
2 Posted 09/04/2017 at 20:15:35
I like Ronald's demeanour on the sidelines. None of the clowning we see by the likes of Conte, Guardiola and especially Klopp who appears to have several fits per game. Even Jose has calmed down. Now he just looks like a narky little shit with a perma-scowl.

Koeman tends to keep calm but will bawl out the players when needed. Pip Neville said he's been our best signing this season. My mind is still unsure but, when he gets it right, he gets it very right.

John Pierce
3 Posted 09/04/2017 at 21:01:17
I sit here and slag Koeman for his poor away form, no getting away from that, especially in the big games.

However I have also said and give him credit for the improvement at home. Making the away thing even more frustrating.

Everton are feared again at Goodison which is the main part of being hard to beat. I'm not saying we are so good teams are beat in the tunnel, but there's some serious brow twitchIng from opposing players.

The blend and balance of the team seems consistent at Goodison with the midfield in particular looking set, Barkley has been released from defensive chores which ultimately truncate his game. Whether you like that or not is matter for you and your keyboard. Because the flip side of that is not one of his better performances has come away from home.

We have been clinical too, and I'm prepared to give Koeman a pat on the back here as well, Lukaku gets a lot of press, a lot of negative coverage, richly deserved too but the accuracy of his shots and his chance conversion has improved hugely this year. Well coached.

So Ron can't disagree with your assessment this week, and the next away games West ham and Swansea I expect to win. So get that shit you serve up away from home sorted!

Paul A Smith
4 Posted 09/04/2017 at 21:06:40
That was another good home win and nice to know heads don't drop when we go behind. We started a young side today and a lot of teams would've rolled over after going behind so quickly and especially after recent disappointments so credit to the young players.

I always like to see where we could improve and it's great to be able to do that after a win. Mirallas set the tone for me and although a lot of credit goes to the likes of Gueye and Davies, I can never fault Mirallas's hunger in them big games and I love the fact he thinks he can fight everyone. (There was no way Koeman was taking him off today after fronted up to Huth.)

Jokes aside, I liked his hunger again today and some of Barkley's grace and movement is just a pleasure to watch when he's that good.

Now we have to turn this home form to away form but I think shape and formation has played a role in them results too.

Tony Hill
5 Posted 09/04/2017 at 21:22:53
Yes, I think he's building a certain steel in the team. Nowhere near what we need yet and my judgment is still reserved on Koeman, but I entirely agree that the way in which he conducts himself is generally what I would expect from an Everton manager.

If he carries on like this he may start to earn the fans' affection – but perhaps he doesn't give a shit about what impression he makes and that might be just what we need after all.

Paul Conway
6 Posted 09/04/2017 at 22:09:56
Fair play to Koeman. He took a bit of unfair stick for the last 2 games. We have to realise that these 2 games were away, against top opposition. We were missing players through injury, including Schneiderlin, who proved today that, when he is in the team, he is formidable.

He got the lads to respond today, after going behind, which made the task even more harder and the result even more proof that he is the one to bring us forward.

There are many Koeman bashers and Lukaku bashers on this site, who are very vocal. But, WTF! Do you want to catapult us back into the early '90s?

Jim Bennings
8 Posted 09/04/2017 at 23:22:07
The thing that smacks me in the face is that at Goodison we seem to thrive again on doing the basics really well, which are putting in hard graft first then the free-flowing football follows, in the main we have also done the basics of defending much easier at home too with the odd exception like today or Bournemouth although today we didn't really defend poorly despite two conceded.

Away from home there seems more concern in stopping average opponents which is frustrating because we clearly could have beaten the likes of Stoke City or Middlesbrough away or even Liverpool or Man Utd, but we haven't gone into those games with enough self belief in my opinion.

Imagine how much better off we would have been with six more away points?

Danny Broderick
9 Posted 09/04/2017 at 23:52:12
In Koeman we trust!!

Bring in a keeper, a centre half and a striker in the summer, and we will really kick on next year.

Michael Kenrick
10 Posted 09/04/2017 at 23:54:15
Bit of blowing in the wind like a weather vane there, Paul (#6). People have every right to critique Koeman and especially our prime non-performer on the big stage, Romelu Lukaku, when they did... which was not for this game but the last two rather disappointing showings. But you seem to be deliberately conflating things. Yes, easy pickings for Lukaku today, although he still messed up a couple of times.

But your "Lukaku bashers" jibe is poor at best. Every criticism of him in those last two games was pretty much bang on the money. But I see you didn't say a word against them or him at the time. At least accept how dreadful he was.

And now excusing Koeman for some poor decisions before and during those games... both games we could and should have won with the better attitude demonstrated today. Sorry, but that just stinks of revisionism.

Barry Jones
11 Posted 10/04/2017 at 02:33:09
We need to keep hold of Koeman. I don't understand the negativity towards him by some posters. This guy knows what he is doing. Of course he has made some mistakes, but we are well positioned for this season and I expect even better after the summer.
Barry Jones
12 Posted 10/04/2017 at 02:42:03
Michael (#10), I tend to agree with most of your comments, but whether we could have won those games in different circumstances is hard to say.

The team selection for the derby was certainly difficult to figure out and I think that Koeman got that one wrong. We also had a few significant injuries.

In my opinion, Schneiderlin makes a big difference to the team. But, over the course of the season, I believe that Koeman has got it right more times than not.

Paul Kelly
15 Posted 10/04/2017 at 13:43:23
Ross's cross for Rom's header described as sensational by the commentator and I agree. Also that was a quality bit of keeping to deny him what would of been our third!

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