Should this defender be given another chance under Sean Dyche?

by   |   29/09/2023  0 Comments  [Jump to last]

Has there ever been a worse time to be an Everton fan? At the start of the Premier League, it looked as though the Toffees’ top-flight aspirations were being resurrected when a four-minute second-half double salvo from James Tarkowski and Dominic Calvert-Lewin gave them an impressive 3-1 victory away at Brentford. But their relegation woes reared their ugly head once more on September 30th, and they did so in devastating fashion. 

Everton Stunned by Lowly Luton 

When Luton Town headed to Goodison Park, it represented the perfect opportunity for the hosts to continue their resurgence. They had just won two on the bounce, including the 2-1 victory away at Aston Villa in the League Cup, and a visit from a heavily unfancied newly promoted side should have been just the tonic. Instead, it was anything but. 

First-half goals from Tom Lockyer and Carlton Morris left the home faithful stunned as the Hatters raced into a two-goal lead. And although the hosts did pull one back through Calvert-Lewin, that wasn’t enough to avoid yet another defeat. Online English Premier League odds now peg Everton as 17/10 third favourites for relegation this season, a price that only Sheffield United and Luton are shorter than. Something needs to change at Goodison and fast. Could bringing this man back into the fold be the catalyst to transforming the Blues’ hopes? 

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 Ben Godfrey Could Be the Game-changer

Defensive stability is something Sean Dyche prided himself on during his lengthy stint with Burnley. While Everton doesn't have the worst defence in the league, they have conceded at a rate of almost two goals per game so far this term, which should be far too many for the manager's liking. They conceded in every game they have played this season; the last time they kept a clean sheet was a goalless draw against Crystal Palace way back in April. 

When Ben Godfrey was brought to the club back in 2020, he looked like a Rolls Royce of a defender and a shoo-in to be a future England stalwart. But the downturn in form under Rafa Benitez was the beginning of the end of that promise, and Everton's £25m investment looked like a waste. Dyche's appointment toward the tail end of last season was also bad news for Godfrey as it was obvious to everyone that he would reunite his old central defensive partnership at Burnley, putting Michael Keane and James Tarkowski back together. 

Things haven't yet worked out though. Keane has been dropped in recent weeks, but the goals have still flowed freely. Godfrey should now be given another chance. While he doesn't have the size or stature of a typical Sean Dyche defender, he does provide the team with an option to play out from the back, and his pace should also work well alongside the power of captain Tarkowski. If further goals are shipped in the coming weeks, Godfrey may well get his chance, and it will mark a make-or-break stage in the Englishman's career. 

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