Everton vs Wolves

24/08/2023 119comments  |  Jump to last
Match Preview

Everton return to Goodison Park this weekend to face Wolves for what will be their second home game of the season still searching for their first goal and points of 2023-24.

The Blues’ performance in their opening home fixture against Fulham may have been encouraging in terms of chances created but it was ultimately frustrating because it ended in defeat, while last Sunday’s 4-0 drubbing at Villa was simply alarming.

It means that this weekend’s match, against a side expected to be down at the wrong end of the table with Everton and expected to be there all season, carries inordinate weight so early in the season, at least in terms of supporter sentiment.

The new campaign may yet be young but Sean Dyche is already dealing with absences for key players, with Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Alex Iwobi ruled out with injuries sustained at Villa Park.

Article continues below video content

Calvert-Lewin sustained a fractured cheekbone and will be seeing a specialist now that the significant swelling on his face is subsiding before his latest return date can be pencilled in.

Iwobi, meanwhile, suffered a hamstring tear that is expected to sideline him for a few weeks, depriving Dyche of one of his most industrious and creative players.

As is the case with new signing Jack Harrison, who is back on the grass but not yet in full training, Dwight McNeil isn’t expected to play until after the upcoming international break and Seamus Coleman is targeting October for his comeback from knee surgery.

With no new signings through the door, it means that Dyche otherwise has the same squad from which to choose as he tries to fashion a team capable of scoring goals at one end and keeping them out at the other.

Arnaut Danjuma, the standout performer last weekend despite only playing under an hour against Villa, should be ready to start, most likely wide on the left, with James Garner continuing on the right in Iwobi’s absence.

Up front, there is little option but to start the hapless Neal Maupay as the lone striker once more, that is unless Dyche opts for Danjuma up front and Lewis Dobbin on the left flank.

It’s on the defence where most Evertonian eyes will be at 2pm when the teams are announced, however. The defensive partnership of Michael Keane and James Tarkowski has struggled under Dyche and it led to the former being removed from the team in the final few games of last season in favour of Yerry Mina.

The Colombian has left the club but Dyche’s apparent lack of faith in the youthful Jarrad Branthwaite — in his press conference at Finch Farm the manager cited a curtailed pre-season for the former Carlisle centre-half’s lack of minutes thus far — has seen Keane restored to the starting XI but that decision has been met with frustration and mounting angst from fans.

It would be brave of Dyche to overlook Branthwaite on this occasion and he did acknowledge that the 21-year-old is on contention to face Wolves.

For their part, Wolves are still adjusting to life under new boss Gary O’Neil who was drafted in to replace the late-departing Julen Lopetegui and the loss of some regular starters like Raul Jimenez and Adama Traore.

Additionally, Matheus Nunes is a transfer target for Manchester City but Matheus Cunha has made a strong start to the season despite not yet scoring and Hwang Hee-chan, who netted in Wolves’s 4-1 home defeat to Brighton, always does well against the Toffees.

Though they were swept aside by the high-flying Seagulls last weekend, O’Neil’s men were impressive against Manchester United in their first match of the season and were hugely unfortunate not to come away from Old Trafford with something to show for their efforts.

They won’t be a pushover at all for an Everton side short on potency and confidence but the hope is that Dyche and his staff will have been doing as much work on the mental side of the players’ game as the technical and physical ahead of an early-season “six-pointer”.

Kick-off: 3pm, Saturday 26 August 2023
Referee: Craig Pawson
VAR: Graham Scott
Last Time: Everton 1 - 2 Wolverhampton Wanderers

Predicted Line-up: Pickford, Patterson, Tarkowski, Branthwaite, Young, Gueye, Onana, Garner, Danjuma, Doucouré, Maupay


Reader Comments (119)

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Robert Tressell
1 Posted 24/08/2023 at 17:20:25
I still think we'll finish about 13th, with Dyche overperforming the quality of our squad which will be about the 15th to 18th worst in the division.

We battered Fulham and were very unlucky even with a makeshift side, which happens.

We got outplayed by a Villa side that has again invested very heavily in 3 Champions League quality players and will realistically be aiming for a top 4 place. This also happens.

It was never going to be an enjoyable season and we are only 2 games in. A win at home against Wolves keeps us well on track for the circa 45 points we need to finish 13th.

Danny O’Neill
2 Posted 24/08/2023 at 18:22:50
Christine, Rob, Jay,

We will all be there in one shape or form when Saturday comes. We always are.

My biggest challenge would be how to get home because of the train strikes.

But I've slept on the benches of Stafford station recently and it's not as rough as Helmand so I'll take that for Everton.

Raymond Fox
3 Posted 24/08/2023 at 18:47:38
I think we would beat Wolves with a fit first choice side, but again we are missing important players who can make all the difference between winning and losing.

Who is going to score the goals for us, it's a wing and a prayer again.

Paul Kernot
4 Posted 25/08/2023 at 01:51:01
It would be a wing and a prayer Raymond, except we don't even have the wings do we? So it'sca prayer & not much else. 1 nil win with Branthwaite scoring from a corner in the 95th minute. How's that for the prayer?
Jack Convery
5 Posted 25/08/2023 at 02:05:06
May the gods forgive me but I can't see us getting anything from this game. Fingers crossed I'm completely wrong.

Pickford, Young, Branthwaite, Tarkowski, Mykolenko.

Garner, Doucoure, Onana,

Damjuma, Cannon, Dobbin.

Playing with Maupay and Keane is a no no right now.

As for Dyche's Press Conference, I thought he looked stressed and was really tetchy and short with his answers and comments. Is the dreaded curse of the Managers Seat starting to get to him ? If yes who can blame him. We are not buying a Centre Forward end of.

Joe Digney
6 Posted 25/08/2023 at 02:23:09
Cannon through the middle
Danjuma on the left in his favored position
Dobbin on the right
Put garner in his natural central midfield role
Branthwaite over keane.

Even if we lose dyche won’t get slaughtered too much if he at least tries different options.

1.0 win tarkowski header.

Michael McGrath
7 Posted 25/08/2023 at 03:11:26
What about Gray, or does Dyche hate him too much to play him anymore even though relegation looms again this season.
Alan J Thompson
8 Posted 25/08/2023 at 03:52:09
If Maupay starts then I'll definitely be in the Dyche out brigade. Cannon must be given a run and if Gray is still not being considered then Danjuma should play as a winger with Gana making way for Dobbin to give us a slightly better chance of scoring as surely we cannot go three games without and still think it's the best they can manage.
Kieran Kinsella
9 Posted 25/08/2023 at 04:20:35
Every time I hear “back on the grass” I think of Jose Baxter.

That apart, due to the collapse of MSP I fear we are at that point in the John Wayne Alamo movie when Wayne’s son — given a token part despite being a crap actor — returns to San Antonio with John Wayne, Laurence Harvey and Richard Widmark all expecting news of reinforcements. And Wayne junior melodramatically takes a sip of the Tennessean bee keepers beer then spits it out and says “Colonel Fannings men aren’t coming. They were ambushed. Killed” Then Wayne and Widmark exchange knowing glances of “well fuck me it’s just us.” I’m hoping we have the Quentin Tarantino version of The Alamo where Davy Crockett survives the lance through the heart and proceeds to go Chuck Norris on 7,000 invaders.

Billy Shears
10 Posted 25/08/2023 at 04:57:14
We'll score but so will Wolves...a hard fought 1-1 draw methinks.
Jonathan Oppenheimer
11 Posted 25/08/2023 at 05:33:34
The only thing that gives me hope is the eternal optimism of the Robert Tressells and Danny O’Neills of the world.

One the one hand we’re so deep in the shit it’s hard to see a way out. On the other hand, before the Villa match the majority of us on here thought we had shown enough in our first match and had enough quality to be low-mid table this season.

I’ve always thought our best hope was Dyche, but that assumes he gets the squad playing with a mental fortitude clearly not evident last week. If he drops at least or 2 of Keane, Maupay and Gueye, preferably all theee, I think we have a good chance, especially if Dyche manages to instill some confidence in the squad. If he doesn’t, I’ll worry that he’s too damn stubborn, and I’ll be particularly angry if Branthwaite doesn’t get the start.

I don’t make predictions, but I’ll retain some hope for the season if we grab a point, get a good number of shots on goal, and show some ability to battle. Then we can wait for McNeill and Harrison to come into the fold and somehow find a miracle cure at striker. Let’s hope this is Danjuma’s coming-out party and we grab a 2-1 win.

Jim Bennings
12 Posted 25/08/2023 at 06:36:27
Another grind of a game nothing more nothing less.

I came across on YouTube an extended highlights match from 2007 when we won 2-1 at Bolton, Yakubu opening the scoring on his debut, Joleon Lescott heading an injury time winner.

It got me thinking how far as a club we have fallen since then.

We start that match with two strikers, Yakubu and Johnson, both of whom established Premier League forwards

We had numerous technically gifted players like Arteta and Pienaar on the pitch and an abundance of game changing substitutes available.

We went on to finish 5th and were unlucky that season not to reach the Quarter Finals of the UEFA Cup.

How on earth have we managed to fall so far behind clubs likes Brentford, Brighton etc etc and that's not meaning any disrespect at all to those clubs.

An inquest that should have been made the summer of last year still hasn't materialized.

Darryl Ritchie
13 Posted 25/08/2023 at 06:37:18
For those of you lucky enough to be going to the game, yell, sing, shout and cheer from opening kickoff to final whistle.

I honestly don’t know how we can score, (or even who can score), and if we defend like we did last week, we’re doomed.

BUT… if Goodison is rocking, it might inspire the squad. Hell, it might even give Maupay the confidence to actually put one in the net.

Hoping for the best…but who knows.

Bill Gienapp
15 Posted 25/08/2023 at 07:28:29
I can live with Maupay starting if you flank him with Danjuma and Dobbin and play Garner in a central position. If that means dropping Doucoure, so be it. Maybe it won't lead to goals, but at least we'll be putting square pegs into square holes.
Gary Brown
16 Posted 25/08/2023 at 07:35:15
Unfortunately I think the posts predicted line up is just about nailed on. Same old 4411 that Dyche prefers.

ONeil will tell wolves to attack and try and win. He’s still smarting from Bournemouth failing to relegate us, and will have his side pumped up. Like us he knows this is the kick start game and very likely 6 pointer.

Think he’ll throw men forward early, so we need to set up to hit hard and fast on the counter, not drop back deeper and deeper until the inevitable concede. For me, I’d go the following (albeit zero chance of dour ‘meat and two veg’ sean doing so)

Patterson Tarks JB Young
Garner Onana
Dobbin Doucoure Danjuma

Phil Lewis
17 Posted 25/08/2023 at 07:38:04
The 5-1 Brighton game saved our season last term. Doucoure was on fire played just behind DCL, possibly proving that to be his most effective position. Against Villa (like many others) his contribution was negligible. For the Wolves match, I would deploy him further forward in a role similar to the Brighton victory, with Tom Cannon taking over from the injured DCL.

Alarmingly, I consider the veterans, Young and Gueye to be more mobile and constructive to the pedestrian Onana, who I would unhesitatingly drop to the bench. Patterson had a stinker against Villa, but I'm prepared to give him the opportunity to return to form. Branthwaite must replace Keane. It seems that wantaway Gomes and Gray are hardly worth considering, yet both could come into the reckoning on the evidence of the Villa result.

All things considered, I believe that realistically, in view of question marks over the commitment to the cause of Gray and Gomes, that our strongest starting line up to face Wolves, in a 4-2-3-1 formation is;


Patterson, Branthwaite, Tarkowski, Mykolenko.

Garner, Gueye.

Young, Doucoure, Danjuma.


Eric Myles
18 Posted 25/08/2023 at 07:45:01
Kieran #9, it always reminds me of a Nike shoe campaign from when Ian Botham returned to the crease after having been banned for a year for smoking ganja with Viv Richards.

"Botham's back on the grass" was quickly dropped as there were too many complaints.

Eric Myles
19 Posted 25/08/2023 at 07:47:57
So how did Maupay score all those goals in previous teams?

Were the oppodition defenders all smaller than him so he could win headers?

Or did they play the different system than Dyche, who seems to me to be Allardyce light.

Eddie Dunn
20 Posted 25/08/2023 at 08:00:07
I would think that Dyche will bow to public opinion and drop Keane in favour of Branthwaite.
So far in his tenure Dyche has given chances to various youngsters but rarely more than one at a time.
So I doubt that Cannon will start, but Dobbin (Dobs) is in with a chance, but probably again off the bench.
Our pedestrian midfield will be our biggest problem.
They lack the legs to support the attacks and are too slow to cover the defence.
It really is a six-pointer. Defeat will get the alarm bells ringing and more importantly, put off anyone coming to us next week.
A win might change the whole narrative and we might just land a half-decent journeyman.
David Bromwell
21 Posted 25/08/2023 at 08:05:42
Sadly the Manager has very few options, and the only area were we have ' spare ' players is in central defence. So although I don't like the system I would opt to play with 3 central defenders, which would at least almost ensure we would see Branthwaite on the pitch. This would allow us to use wing backs and ease the defensive burden on the two full backs where they both struggled last week, and play James Garner in the centre where he looks more comfortable and effective.

We also quite clearly don't have anyone who is suited to play up front on their own, so I would go with Maupay and Danjuma, as are best available and most experienced. That means there would be two midfield places available, where I would be tempted to play Onana and Doucour'e.

Most importantly, we need to keep all our supporters in their seats for the whole 90 minutes plus and we will do this best by stopping Wolves from scoring and creating chances ourselves.

Bill Fairfield
22 Posted 25/08/2023 at 08:11:06
Just hope it’s not another miserable afternoon. That line up and formation hardly fills me with confidence. But you never know. COYB.
Danny O’Neill
23 Posted 25/08/2023 at 08:12:06
We are playing Wolves at Goodison.

Lot's of opinions and suggestions, as we always get when discussing Everton.

I don't care who is playing. I never stepped onto a football pitch not expecting to win. I never go to watch Everton not expecting them to win.

Phil, Brighton was special. I've been to the last two and seen us score 7 for a return of 1.

Everton win for me.

Paul Johnson
24 Posted 25/08/2023 at 08:13:21
Eric @19,

If you look at Maupay goal return in the Premier League, it is abysmal. Before Brighton signed him, he was at Brentford in the Championship where his goal tally was only reasonable. No disrespect to the lad but he is playing at the wrong level.

Paul Johnson
25 Posted 25/08/2023 at 08:17:31

Total respect for you enthusiasm but a sense of realism wouldn't go amiss sometimes.

I think with this current Everton line-up, the word “expecting” should be replaced with “hoping”. Keep fighting the good fight though mate.

Neil Lawson
26 Posted 25/08/2023 at 08:19:32
"Upfront there is no option but". (Lyndon).

There is. Calvert-Lewin started last week because a tall mobile striker in the true sense was deemed appropriate. He is not fit. Cannon is.

Midfield last week was appalling. So why not play Garner in his true position? I can never understand why players are shoehorned into false positions when there are natural replacements.

If the young players are worth a place on the bench, then they deserve their chance to impress.

Branthwaite. I think we all agree.
However, what I think may make sense appears to be anathema to Dyche.
Team news tomorrow will be very telling.

Robert Tressell
27 Posted 25/08/2023 at 08:21:16
Just spotted that Piroe has gone to Leeds for about £12M. That seems like excellent value.

He was probably the best goalscorer of the players linked – albeit possibly not the best suited to a direct, counter attacking style.

Gary Brown
28 Posted 25/08/2023 at 08:24:16
Eric #19 - think that’s a very astute point, it is very much a different system. In fact, I’d go even further and say an entirely different setup and not just Dyche (who I agree is Allardyce lite btw).

Brighton focus on ball players. We seem to want “athletes”. If you look through Lyndons predicted team trying to identify real, natural “ballers” the only one who stands out as one for me is Garner (not seen Danjuma enough yet).

Look through the wider squad and who is there who looks technical and especially skilful? Maybe Iwobi, McNeil, Harrison, Dele, Gray? That’s it. Even these are questionable and none are going to be starting this weekend.

I think Maupay would (and certainly did) do much better in a technically gifted, football playing team. However, we are not one, and therefore we need someone up top who can hold it up, win the inevitable long balls, and make things happen themselves.

DCL is that player, but as we’ve found out so painfully over last 2-3 years he’s almost impossible to replicate. Maybe Chermiti can do it, maybe Beto…….but the goal of the club has got to be to transition back to technically gifted players behind them somehow once we get the temp “dom clone” jigsaw piece for immediate needs.

However, Dyche likes his athletes and bleep tests…..most likely because he lacks the technical skills himself to do it any other way. As you say, like Allardyce he’s a percentage man. A dinosaur. Right for last year, maybe right for this shite squad but utterly wrong for building us a future in the way Kompany is now doing at his old club.

Pete Neilson
29 Posted 25/08/2023 at 09:07:34
Hopefully we won’t see Keane start. Would like to see Garner play centrally and not in front of Patterson, both painfully exposed last week. Last season Gray offered more up front than Maupay, if he’s fit play him. The lumpen midfield threesome (GOD) are pretty much nailed on to start. Limited options though and minimal creativity. I’d take a scrappy 1-0 to us now.
Tony Everan
30 Posted 25/08/2023 at 09:15:34
Some big calls for Dyche tomorrow, the pressure is on. Changes should be made after the shamfeful performance last week. Too many mentally weak performances all over the pitch.

The first move has to be dropping Keane, the 8% win rate stat with him and Tarkowski says it all. Branthwaite is young, little PL experience, but still is the better gamble than Keane. He may well struggle too but we cannot persevere with the status quo, try Branthwaite and the gamble may just pay off. He stepped up with PSV so he could well step up for us.

Right back is an issue that needs discussion, do we drop Patterson who looked very undisciplined defensively. Switching Young to right back and bringing in Myko would be possibly safer.

Midfield was a big issue as well so that will need attention, Gana was poor, Doucoure arguably worse, Onana often absent. Garner wide is wasted to an extent. It's now a conundrum the best midfield set up. I'd drop Doucouré go for Garner and Onana either side of a more defensive Gana.

Then an even more pressing issue, no goals scored yet, DCL out injured and still no striker signed. Danjuma has to be on the pitch as he looked like our best player on Sunday. Also crucial I think is replacing Maupay with Cannon. Cannon is a more instinctive finisher, and can be clinical. Chances will come against Wolves tomorrow, there has to be someone on the pitch who can bury them. Cannon is the better bet.

Iwobi is wasted out wide too so with him out Id give Dobbin a start for pace and directness. May just set up a few chances along with Danjuma for Cannon which he will bury.

It's risky however way you cut it, but this line up gives me some sort of tentative hope as its trying something different to get goals - Pace and finishing power is there.


Young Tarkowski Branthwaite Mykolenko

Garner Gana Onana

Dobbin Cannon Danjuma

Everton 3-0 Wolves COYBLUES!

Andrew Ellams
31 Posted 25/08/2023 at 09:17:26
Sounds simple but if you don't score goals you don't beat anybody.
Ajay Gopal
32 Posted 25/08/2023 at 09:17:54
Wolves have a strong midfield and this is the area where the battle needs to be won with good ball winning, retention and usage. Unfortunately, we have a real dearth of numbers and quality in this area.

Maupay is much maligned - and yes, you would have to agree with it based on his goal-scoring record over his 38 game appearances for Everton so far, but if you look at his performances the first 2 games this season, he has played well without (unfortunately/unluckily?) actually putting the ball in the back of the net. And yet, it would be unfair for Dyche to play him in front of a baying Goodison crowd, especially if we were to go behind in the game.

So, I would go with a 4-4-2:

Danjuma Dobbin
Onana Gana Doucoure Garner
Young Branthwaite Tarkowski Patterson

SUBS: Virginia, Godfrey, Keane, Mykolenko, Onyango, Maupay, Cannon, Chermiti
INJURED (as a reminder): Coleman, Calvert-Lewin, Iwobi, McNeil, Harrison, Alli

Mark Taylor
33 Posted 25/08/2023 at 09:31:34
While I admire the optimists on here, I am a pessimist. The next 8 days will reveal whether I am being realistic or am just wrong.

A game tomorrow against one of our most obvious relegation rivals. We need something out this game, even if only a draw. Next weekend a game against a side who even I am counting on to finish below us. Lose or even draw that and the alarm bells will be ringlng loud.

In between the banana skin at Doncaster. Surely even our reserves couldn't lose to the worst team in the league?

From what I've seen of them this season, Wolves look a handy side but lack a cutting edge. Maybe a 0-0?

Dave White
34 Posted 25/08/2023 at 09:59:14
It's very early in the season and I have a deep sense of foreboding. And for a blue who's usually blindly optimistic too!

Due to holidays, I haven't been able to watch either game this season (mercifully in the case of Villa) but I'm still clinging on to the sheer number of chances we created against Fulham (I watched the highlights on Sky).

We desperately need a break, I'll be resorting to prayer, and a rain dance for a Maupay goal (we all know he's gonna start).

Denis Richardson
35 Posted 25/08/2023 at 10:06:47
3rd game of the season and it already feels like I need to watch from behind the sofa.

For so many reasons, this is massive game and yet again we go into one without a recognised striker up front. For the umpteenth time. Just amazing.

If Maupay starts, then he needs someone beside him. He obviously can't play up top on his own. Maybe switch to a 4-4-2 or likely 4-4-1-1 with Danjuma or Doucouré playing higher up. Maybe even give Cannon a try. This is also where we could really do with Gray in the team with so many injured. Danjuma is the only one that looks dangerous out wide.

Gueye and Onana in the middle have offered so little going forward. That needs to change as well. I would even drop one and put Doucouré in the middle.

Please start Branthwaite.

Kunal Desai
36 Posted 25/08/2023 at 10:07:52
I feel, even at this early stage of the season, sides like Fulham and Wolves (teams likely to be scrapping in and around us) are games we really do need to be taking 3 points from.

Fulham was a real hammer blow despite the chances created, I don't think we can have afford to have a repeat of this against Wolves.

On the basis that we need to be grinding out atleast 7/8 home wins and 2/3 away wins to reach safety it's exceptionally and vitally important we get 3 points here against a rival.

Raymond Fox
37 Posted 25/08/2023 at 10:12:20
How can you fancy us to beat anyone, three of our better players are likely to be missing for this game.

The team is threadbare, I can't believe Wolves will field a poorer side than us, what a mess.

Andrew Ellams
38 Posted 25/08/2023 at 10:21:29
Just noticed that after tomorrow our next 4 games are live on TV. Laid bare for the whole nation to see.
Joe McMahon
39 Posted 25/08/2023 at 10:31:44
I want this season to be over already just so we know what the future looks like. The quality of the squad is the worst Everton team in my lifetime and that includes the Howard Kendall Mk III team certainly after Gary Speed left.

There will be no Gianluca Vialli to save us this time.

Kevin Edward
40 Posted 25/08/2023 at 10:43:45
Regardless of the last two games, Goodison will be up for this one. Unless at 2pm we see another poor set-up.

Let's see what Dyche has done during the week and see if Danjuma, Garner etc can step up a notch or two and get us a home win. But more of the same and it will be grim.

We need to score first, just cannot concede early. How about a 7-goal thriller? 4:3 Everton, with a Danjuma hat-trick.

James Marshall
41 Posted 25/08/2023 at 10:54:12
This might sound nuts and probably not something many will agree with, but I'd give Andre Gomes a run out – at least he puts his foot on the ball and knows how to make a pass or two.

Okay, shoot me down now.

Kevin Molloy
42 Posted 25/08/2023 at 10:56:44
I was ready to give Dyche both barrels if he chose Keane again this weekend, but that bullshit report in the Mail about how Everton were offering Branthwaite an improved contract in order to 'fend off rivals' makes me think he's being lined up for a sale by the end of the window, and that's why we haven't been playing him.

After the events of the last 72 hours, I think this is more than likely.

Eddie Dunn
43 Posted 25/08/2023 at 11:00:11
James, he gets better the longer it's been since we saw him give away free kicks on the edge of his box.
James Marshall
44 Posted 25/08/2023 at 11:08:17
Eddie - yeah, I'll admit it's been a while. Maybe I just miss his hair.
Keith Gleave
45 Posted 25/08/2023 at 11:19:57
So, lost to Fulham, no goals scored. Thrashed by Villa, no goals scored.

We now enter the third game of the season and still no new striker. Wolves have not performed poorly, I fear another loss and no goals scored.

Steve Pickering
46 Posted 25/08/2023 at 11:40:52
Maupay hat trick to see off Wolves! COYB
Nicholas Ryan
47 Posted 25/08/2023 at 11:48:10
I had hoped that the words 'relegation 6-pointer' would not be heard before Easter, if at all. I hadn't imagined hearing them used in August!!
Danny O’Neill
48 Posted 25/08/2023 at 11:48:24
Wolves lost their first match 1 - 0 and were then battered by Brighton result wise.

Why do we fear them? Why would we?

We shouldn't. And we won't.

Get down to Goodison Park. Physically, spiritually or virtually.

Get your coat on, although looking at the weather forecast, you won't need one.

Tom Bowers
49 Posted 25/08/2023 at 12:03:45
It would be easy to say who the relegation teams will be at this stage of the season and most of us have.

However there is a long way to go and many things can happen.

Yes, it is a big disappointment to lose the first two games they way they have especially that awful performance at Villa Park but Dyche needs to show some guts now and try to get the new faces into the team to show what they have and if the team as a whole can be a better unit.

I suspect however that he will await the Doncaster game before doing that and will stick with the ''high wage'' earners again against Wolves but the confidence looked low in the Villa game and without Calvert-Lewin and also Iwobi it's hard to see much of an improvement but anything less will be bad for Dyche and the club as if things weren't bad enough at board level and the financial level, not to mention the independent commission in October.

Jim Bennings
50 Posted 25/08/2023 at 12:12:05
Dyche will need to start buying himself some time in all of this destruction.

If he starts picking the old favorites again tomorrow, the fans will become impatient with him and I don't want that particularly.

I'm not Dyche's biggest fan, I was on the fence when he was appointed, I wasn't impressed but neither was I gutted at the time and I'm still in the same mindset regarding his being here.

But we don't need yet another managerial change straight away unless we have a Graham Potter lined up.

What would be the logical argument for sacking Dyche and appointing Duncan Ferguson really?

He's only Dyche without Dyche's experiences, he's not going to get swashbuckling attacking football with shite players.

We know Moshiri is always quick on the trigger when it comes to sackings, it wouldn't shock me at all if Dyche does come under immense pressure if by the end of September things take a further nosedive.

After all, I'm quite sure that Moshiri wanted Marcelo Bielsa as his first choice back in January, didn't he?

John Raftery
51 Posted 25/08/2023 at 12:12:43
Apart from Pickford in goal and Tarkowski in central defence there is a question mark about every position in the starting eleven. In the circumstances, an early season injury crisis with our three best attacking players, Calvert-Lewin, Iwobi and McNeil all unavailable is the last thing Sean Dyche needs.

Throw in the crises of confidence affecting the likes of Patterson, Keane and Maupay and the waywardness of Onana, Gana and Doucouré and it is hard to resist the case for wholesale changes. Yet fielding half a team which has never played a full game together including Branthwaite, Dobbin and Cannon along with Danjuma making a full debut looks like a gamble

That leads me to think Branthwaite and Danjuma will start but Dyche will retain faith in the others. Very likely the wholesale changes some are calling for will happen at Doncaster.

Mal van Schaick
52 Posted 25/08/2023 at 12:15:32
After the Villa debacle, I will be watching with interest hoping for an Everton win, given that Dyche said we had one of those off-days?

So, can we lay this one on him win, draw or lose?

David McMullen
53 Posted 25/08/2023 at 12:25:59
I'm trying not to be too pessimistic and too matter of fact but after the first 2 games another defeat similar to Fulham similar to Wolves last season, will set the tone for the season at least the early part until (with a bit of luck) we have new players and players back from injury. We just need to get 3 points on the board and change the mood with a good win.
Christopher Timmins
54 Posted 25/08/2023 at 12:35:56
As an absolute minimum, we need a much improved performance from the Villa game. I am hoping the manger makes some changes other than the enforced ones due to injury.

We are mow missing Coleman, McNeil, Iwobi and Calvert-Lewin for tomorrow and all 4 would be starters if available. After 2 games, it could not be described as a must-win but it sure would be a help if we collected the 3 points.

Support the team and take your frustration out on the management before and after the game.

After the week we have had we, fans, management and players, could do with a morale booster tomorrow, we lost to them last season to a late goal.

Ray Jacques
55 Posted 25/08/2023 at 12:38:16
James at 41.

Giving Gomes a run out is an oxymoron because the guy cannot run. However, he is probably still our most creative midfield player (how sad is that) and against a team like Wolves at home maybe worth giving him a chance.

At least he would retain possession, unlike the other useless lumps in midfield who constantly cede easy possession in dangerous areas of the pitch and create panic in the backline.

If Branthwaite doesn't play then I honestly think Dyche has lost it.

Perhaps Cannon can shoot Keane. Sorry!

Jim Wilson
56 Posted 25/08/2023 at 12:50:07
Phil @17,

You nailed it. That's my team too.

Garner should be played in centre-mid. He is a better passer and ball winner than Onana and is far more influential. He helps Gueye's game too and Doucoures.

And you are right last seasons Brighton line up should be the template.

Mykolenko should be back in and Young can play left or right midfield.

Branthwaite should play as should Cannon.

Onana just isn't doing it and I would put him on the bench.

Phil Smith
57 Posted 25/08/2023 at 13:09:55
Gary (16), I think that's exactly how he will start, except he won't start Cannon. He'll stick with Maupay.

He'd better give Branthwaite his chance, as Keane is done for me at our club. He'll probably start with him too though, sigh…

Barry Hesketh
58 Posted 25/08/2023 at 13:13:42
Young; Branthwaite; Tarkowski; Mykolenko, Patterson;
Doucoure; Garner; Gueye; Danjuma
and Maupay or whichever forward we have left.

Patterson and Danjuma should have the energy to play as attacking wing backs and also protect the two full-backs. It won't be anything like the team we'll see tomorrow as it's perhaps a little too fluid for Dyche's liking.

Brian Harrison
59 Posted 25/08/2023 at 13:15:29
Jim 56

My sentiments exactly, leave Onana on the bench and play Garner in central midfield were he can effect the game not as an auxiliary fullback trying to cover for Patterson's defensive frailties.

I would also give Cannon a chance up front, and Danjuma looked like he wanted to attack the opposition and run at them were most of our other forwards tend to want to pass the buck rather than take on the responsibility.

Just a great pity that neither Harrison nor McNeil can start this game. I hope we play both Garner and Doucouré 10 yards further forward so we have some attacking intent as, even if we get it wide, there is nobody in the box to benefit as normally our 2 attacking midfield players are 2 or 3 yards outside the box.

Colin Malone
60 Posted 25/08/2023 at 13:32:46
We've got to play Branthwaite. If we don't, his stock will stay as it is. If we do and he plays well, his stock will go higher. That's if he insists that he wants to leave.

We have got to replace Doucouré from the Number 10 role. We need more guile on that part of the pitch.

Jim Wilson
61 Posted 25/08/2023 at 2023/08/25 : 13:41:23

Yes, I would start Branthwaite instead of Keane on Saturday (I would prefer Holgate to Keane also) and I would start Cannon instead of Maupay. 

The other important change I would make is moving Garner into centre midfield to partner Gueye. Yes, Garner has done a good job on the right but the team gains more if he plays in the centre.

Onana is just not doing enough for us in centre midfield. The midfield is looking very poor with him there. And we don't get the best out of Gueye and Doucouré when he plays.

It was the same last season but, when Onana got injured and Garner came in, the midfield improved dramatically. Garner can pass better than Onana, tackles better than Onana, covers the defence better and his all-round game is more influential than Onana's.

The big plus is that Gueye's game benefits from Garner playing in centre-midfield, as does Doucourés. The Onana - Gueye - Doucoure midfield just isn't working. It is the wrong mix. This was the main problem in the Villa game and Villa were allowed to cut through us with ease.

If we are going to start picking up points, no matter who we play up front, we need a functioning midfield, up for the fight, and it is just not happening with Onana playing with Gueye. Garner would dramatically improve the situation.

Garner's performances last season helped us enormously. The great away win at Brighton was a lot to do with him. I don't understand why Dyche isn't using that line-up as a template. Yes, McNeil, was missing but the team that started against Villa could have been close to that line-up.

I don't even think it would be a bad thing to play Onana further upfield with Doucouré. It worked against Bournemouth, but personally I would prefer Cannon coming in with Onana on the bench.

Sean Dyche says he has been in this game all his life so it makes me wonder why he can't get the basics right. He saw how the players performed last season so you would think he would now know their weaknesses and strengths.

Our defence improved last season as soon as Keane was removed. He was making far too many mistakes and he was a liability. He has given Keane another chance but the mistakes are back again. It is also clear that when Keane plays it also affects Tarkowski's game. We cannot afford to be shipping unnecessary goals so it is essential that Keane is dropped and Branthwaite is given a chance.

Up front Maupay has no confidence in front of goal, it just isn't going to happen for him, so give Cannon a chance.

Because of the injury situation, there is also a case for bringing Mykolenko into the team and playing Young wide left. 

We have played 2 games and already there has been 2 awful decisions given against us. Yet I hear no complaints from our club. If those decisions had been given against the top clubs, which they wouldn't, they would have been furious with endless complaints. We should be doing this.

And the constant small decisions given against us, that dictate the direction of a game, are completely overlooked and, until something is done by our club, they will continue.

But right now, Sean Dyche has to get his team selection right, he has to make it hard for the opposition to play against us, like he did for most of the games last season, and there is no room for error in the Wolves game. It is a must-win!

Robert Tressell
62 Posted 25/08/2023 at 14:07:43
We really don't need wholesale changes; we just need a performance as good as that against Fulham and a but more luck.

With the various absences, I expect there's a reasonable chance Dyche may (reluctantly) go 5-3-2 – because that way he can accommodate Branthwaite at centre-back, and give Patterson and Young a bit more licence to get forward. Garner, Onana and Doucouré in the centre-mid positions (or maybe Gueye in midfield with Garner at right-wingback in place of Patterson) and then maybe Danjuma and Maupay up front.

The likes of Cannon and Dobbin can then get minutes later on possibly depending on how Danjuma's fitness is holding up.

I think a back 4 exposes Branthwaite far too much in a cobbled-together defence – and we don't have any natural width with Harrison, McNeil and Iwobi all missing (and Gray being held back for sale). People are talking about Branthwaite's omission against Villa as though it was decisive. Come off it. We'd have still been trounced by a much better Villa side with Branthwaite in for Keane.

Anyway, I'm not a huge fan of 5-3-2 but Dyche organised it well at the tail end of last season when we were running out of players – and Keane, Branthwaite and Tarkowski offer a goal threat at set pieces.

The main thing is a decent amount of intensity and making sure we get players forward in support of whoever is playing in attack.

Dave Abrahams
63 Posted 25/08/2023 at 14:14:38
I think when Onana plays in midfield it makes it much harder for the other central midfield players; he puts his workload onto the other players alongside him instead of mixing in with them.

He's like a mirage in the desert, you see him but he's not there. Well… for a good part of the game he isn't.

Dale Self
64 Posted 25/08/2023 at 14:24:29
Alright Gramps, I'm rolling on that issue. Garner, Gana and Doucouré in a 5-3-2. Good call as always, Robert.
Alex Gray
65 Posted 25/08/2023 at 14:36:31
I've made the conscious decision that I will not be going the game until we get a striker. I refuse to offer my support to a club that is intent on destroying itself.

It's beyond a joke now. I've been relatively quiet this week and took a break away from anything Everton related and quite frankly it's been a pretty good week.

With regards to this weekend, I fully expect Maupay and Keane to start and Wolves to win.

Kieran Kinsella
66 Posted 25/08/2023 at 14:37:53

So you never plan on watching Everton again?

Steve Brown
67 Posted 25/08/2023 at 14:39:57
We might have a large number of athletes in the squad – Calvert-Lewin, Onana, Doucoure, Patterson, Mykolenko, Branthwaite – but none of them were signed by Dyche.

Players he has signed,such as Young, Danjuma and Harrison, are more skillful and technical.

Barry Hesketh
68 Posted 25/08/2023 at 14:42:54
Mate has just come back from Goodison, he bought a Golden Goal ticket.

I asked, "What does it read?" He said "February 24th."

Hopefully this gag will be made redundant at some point tomorrow.

Winston Williamson
69 Posted 25/08/2023 at 14:52:37
Right now, we're losing games and can't score. That's with senior players like Keane and Maupay playing. We don't look like winning a game either.

I'd prefer to be losing and not scoring with young, inexperienced players in the team. At least they're more likely to learn and develop. The senior players won't develop. Won't learn. Same mistakes. Game after game.

This club is unrecognisable now. It's very hard to follow this club. Football in general to be honest.

Clive Rogers
70 Posted 25/08/2023 at 15:03:08
It's difficult to be optimistic with a disastrous financial situation hanging over us, an owner who has given up and just wants out, and a 78-year-old, ill-proven failure reinstated chairman who daren't attend home games.
Christy Ring
71 Posted 25/08/2023 at 15:15:06
Listening to Dyche's press conference yesterday, I wouldn't be too hopeful of him starting Branthwaite, he was saying he was still getting up to speed, and then he mentioned Godfrey?

He can't start Keane again; if he does, he's lost the plot. Also play Garner in his proper position, he's totally lost on the wing. Swallow your pride and play Gray.

David McMullen
72 Posted 25/08/2023 at 15:17:14
I don't think Gray will be playing if he's in Southampton having a medical.
Jay Harris
73 Posted 25/08/2023 at 15:23:41
I think this game will be won or lost in midfield where Wolves are particularly strong.

I would therefore go 3-5-2 with Tarkowski, Branthwaite and Mykolenko in a back 3 and Onana, Gana, Gueye Doucouré and Young in midfield with Dobbin and Danjuma up front.

I'll throw a wild card in with Michael Keane as Sub for Danjuma after 70 minutes to lump it up front and let him get on the end of things.

Jeff Armstrong
74 Posted 25/08/2023 at 15:29:31
Is Gray having a Saints medical?

I thought it was Holgate.

Alex Gray
75 Posted 25/08/2023 at 15:31:06
Kieran, put it this way: I certainly don't expect Beto to be in a blue shirt next week. Fully expecting us to end up overspending on Adams because we can't even get that right and if we don't end up with him, I expect nobody.

It's a "tough window" after all. On the plus side, we'll soon be involved with 777 Partners who have no money and every club they own is in disarray as they provide no funds and expect their clubs to be fully self-sustained.

Oh and they're under investigation for kidnapping and drug related charges alongside fraud. So basically Mike Ashley with criminal charges. There's a lovely article regarding how they've destroyed Standard Liege, Sevilla, Hertha Berlin and Genoa.

Kieran Kinsella
76 Posted 25/08/2023 at 15:38:13

No, Gray is off to Saudi. He has been told to wait until the window closes before signing so we don't have a chance to spend the nominal fee on a replacement.

Kieran Kinsella
77 Posted 25/08/2023 at 15:39:16

I seriously wonder if 777 Partners would pass the fit and proper ownership test. Or is that all part of the plan? Keep protests at bay by dragging out another takeover that is destined not to happen?

Ian Linn
78 Posted 25/08/2023 at 15:54:35
I was gonna write something but I just can't be arsed anymore.
David McMullen
79 Posted 25/08/2023 at 15:57:40
* Sorry, that's Holgate my mistake! So many comings and goings… pfft!
Alex Gray
80 Posted 25/08/2023 at 16:10:03
Kieran, who knows?

Moshiri passed it with a Russian oligarch and Newcastle are Saudi owned so the bar is pretty low. It's clear though that neither Moshiri nor Kenwright have the club's interests in mind though. They wouldn't be going near 777 Partners otherwise.

Transfers aside, I'm really unsure as a fan what the next move is. Everton don't bring me any form of joy and I find myself struggling to find a reason to support the club.

I love the club as in Everton FC but the reality is the owner, board, players and quickly catching up the manager to be pretty detestable, which large in part makes the club. The fans are turning against each other as we want to be the force that pulls the club up but at the same time enable those above to get away with what they're doing.

If we protest, we're labelled as toxic and the reason players don't want to come. If we say nothing and just carry on going the match, no real change happens, so I find myself thinking "Is simply not going the only option where I can protest what's going on and not be seen as the toxicity stopping us progressing?"

To some, I understand why that may make me a fake fan or not a 'True Blue' but everything associated with us is negative and I firmly predict this season to be as toxic for the club as it has ever been.

Barry Hesketh
81 Posted 25/08/2023 at 16:18:37
Alex @80,

You wrote: I love the club as in Everton FC but the reality is the owner, board, players and quickly catching up the manager to be pretty detestable…

I take it you have no time for Mr Dyche, but how has he offended your sensibilities so much that you have him labelled as "Detestable"?

I'm no fan of Mr Dyche, but I also realise that he's probably the 'best' man for the job at this moment and, far from being detestable, he's trying his best under very trying circumstances.

If we could pick and choose who was the manager of Everton, I don't think the majority would have Dyche in their top three picks, but we haven't got a choice and he'll get my support for as long as he is here, same as most of the previous incumbents at Goodison,

Joe McMahon
82 Posted 25/08/2023 at 16:31:28
For the first time since 1981 (and lockdown of course) I didn't see Everton last season, partially due to costs but mainly due to what has happened to our club. I hold one person wholly responsible for the downward spiral and slow death of Everton Football Club.

Bill Kenwright is a selfish parasite and I just cannot bring myself to pay out hard earned while he still has anything do with the club (our club). I'm having to take a paycut next month due to NHS overspend where I work. I cannot justify going to see such a heartbreaking setup.

Big shout out to all the loyal supporters that follow the club home and and away. I'll be back and I hope to see you all at BMD in happier times. Does Kenwright care how he makes supporters feel? I think we all know the answer!

Steve Daniells
83 Posted 25/08/2023 at 17:04:48




Maupay (I don't want him to play but I just cannot see Dyche starting Cannon)

I went to this game last season on Boxing Day. It started well: Mina scored early, the goal seemed to be met with disbelief more than anything. Did we really just take the lead? Then we sat back and Wolves came at us. 1-1 at half-time. Mina of course went off injured.

Closing stages, the fans were screaming at Tarkowski to get the ball forward. From my seat, he looked panicked, then gave it away and they scored the winner. Oof. Everton that.
We have to win tomorrow. We will.

2-0 to the Blues... if Dyche plays my line-up. ;)

Christy Ring
84 Posted 25/08/2023 at 18:19:06
Joe #82,

So sorry to hear about your salary cuts, it's shocking to hear that staff working on the front line are treated so badly. Hope you'll be back at Goodison soon and hopefully better times on and off the pitch.

Christy Ring
92 Posted 25/08/2023 at 18:38:34
Brian #90 I don’t know if it’s just my ToffeeWeb, but I have to keep pressing submit before I get a reply to say it’s accepted.
Brian Williams
93 Posted 25/08/2023 at 18:40:13
Christy. I would press once, wait, and refresh! It happened to me a while back and that's how I prevented multi post syndrome. 🤣
Alex Gray
94 Posted 25/08/2023 at 18:43:15

I don't hold anything against Dyche as, like all managers at this club, they're hung out to dry.

I found the Kane remark in poor taste yesterday though. He has the usual flaws selecting Keane etc but in the list of issues with Everton, he's lower down the list.

I tend not to be attached because he'll be gone within 12 months anyway.

Danny O’Neill
95 Posted 25/08/2023 at 18:55:28
37,000 of us will show up tomorrow. If the away section didn't sell out or we had had bigger capacity, there would be more there.

We will show up. They need to.

By tomorrow afternoon, we can and will be 3 points ahead of Wolves. Regardless, we will be way ahead of them at the end of the season.

Safe travels Evertonians and in win go.

James Marshall
96 Posted 25/08/2023 at 18:56:22
I just watched the OS video of the first team training for Wolves and Chermiti is not there – so is he injured already and the club aren't daring tell anyone?
Ian Hawkins
99 Posted 25/08/2023 at 19:51:56
Evening all,

Long-term follower but extremely infrequent poster. I wonder whether we may play Garner at right back with Mykolenko (if fit) at left-back?

This would keep Dyche's preferred Gueye, Doucouré and Onana in the middle with Danjuma and Young supporting Maupay.

Whilst not ideal Maupay is currently probably our best bet up front and would be better with the trickery and more intricate link-up play Young and Danjuma may provide.

Anyone's guess at centre-back but I wouldn't be surprised to see Godfrey getting the nod.

Brian Hennessy
101 Posted 25/08/2023 at 20:06:43
Danny has two free tickets for tomorrow's game to give away on the above number for the first person to call him.
Dale Self
103 Posted 25/08/2023 at 20:11:21
Ian 99, good job coming onto the pitch to replace Ian 78!

I would possibly give Garner the RWB role in place of Patterson but a front two with Dobbin and Danjuma

Post more often. I know it feels weird sometimes but keep it going!

Brian Wilkinson
105 Posted 25/08/2023 at 20:46:06
No need for any apology, John, mate, and certainly not any inconvenience on my side.

Will see you tomorrow at the Harloch for sure, was more worried Danny not getting the message from you John.

Paul Kossoff
106 Posted 25/08/2023 at 23:03:50
Danny, Wolves played Man Utd off the pitch and were very unlucky. They also had some very good chances against Brighton.

If we keep a clean sheet I'll be surprised.

I hope someone gives you a bed for the night.

Good news, we ain't bottom no more! 😀

Jack Convery
107 Posted 26/08/2023 at 00:21:30
We don't play, we go up a position!! There is a God!!
Colin Glassar
110 Posted 26/08/2023 at 07:45:37
I think we might score a goal but so will they.

Nervy 1-1 draw.

Paul Birmingham
111 Posted 26/08/2023 at 2023/08/26 : 07:57:30
For the challenges we face as Evertonians in every minute of every day, let's now in this most challenging of times stick together and keep the faith. Viva Santo Domingo!


Si Cooper
112 Posted 26/08/2023 at 09:20:47
Rob Dolby
113 Posted 26/08/2023 at 09:34:13
I agree with the post above. I would play Garner at right-back and bring Mykolenko back as left-back.

Garner Tarkowski Keane Mykolenko
Gray Gana Doucouré Onana Danjuma

If Gray is refusing to play, I would slot in Dobbin.

Tactics today: sit deep and hit on the break, make it hard for the opposition. Take the clean sheet and anything else is a bonus.

If we try to play attacking football, we will expose the defence too easily and end up getting beaten. I thought Dyche had learned that lesson from last season.

Brian Wilkinson
114 Posted 26/08/2023 at 09:49:28
I will be shocked if Branthwaite or Cannon, or even Dobbin starts today.

Go on, Sean… surprise me.

James Marshall
115 Posted 26/08/2023 at 10:04:21
Here's something I think we could all do with – a meditation designed specifically for Evertonians. You're welcome.


Danny Baily
116 Posted 26/08/2023 at 10:09:08
Brian 114, I'm not sure about Dobbin.

I would like to see Branthwaite and Cannon involved at some point though.

Rob Hooton
117 Posted 26/08/2023 at 11:13:48
I've been feeling down about all things Everton this week, so big thanks to Danny & Co for raising my spirits again today – hopefully not temporarily!

Whoever takes to the pitch today needs to up their game. I can't see Dyche making many changes but I hope he shows some nous and gives some underperformers a kick up the backside.

I am sure those in attendance will do their best to give our boys a boost, 3 points please! COYB!!

Christine Foster
118 Posted 26/08/2023 at 11:24:33
I think, after last week, Branthwaite has to come in for Keane with Young and Mykolenko. Garner is central midfield instead of Onana, or he doesn't start. Up front, he should play Danjuma instead of Maupay.

This has to be on the front foot, stop them playing, high press.
If he plays Keane, I'm going to need a stiff drink before it starts at 2 am New Zealand time. Nothing sadder, sitting in the dark at 2 am with a glass of whiskey as my companion. Hangover or bliss… I know which one I prefer!
Brian Wilkinson
119 Posted 26/08/2023 at 11:26:56
I cannot see any changes to the starting 11 barring the obvious two injury-forced changes.

Both Keane and Maupay will start then on Wednesday, Branthwaite and Dobbin will start in the cup game and have decent games. Then back on the bench for the following Premier League game.

I left Cannon out as I think he will be at Preston on loan, should the Beto deal go through.

Brian Harrison
120 Posted 26/08/2023 at 11:33:42
Danny 95

As always you are always positive and as the song goes always looking on the bright side. I am going the game but I am sorry I just don't share your optimism, and I really wish I could, and I know talking to many fellow Blues in the last couple of days they feel the same. Sean Dyche said at the end of last season we need to start acting like a big club, but we look anything but a big club. And even our Under 21s have had 2 heavy defeats at the start of the season.
We seem to have more out injured than ever before, we are loaning players to teams who have just sold £90 millions worth of players, but we are still paying them some of our loan players wages. We have GBmin who is seemingly not bothering to turn up at Finch Farm and his agent is saying he will never play for us again yet we are still paying him. There is very little to be positive about, I know we are only 2 games into a new season, but we don't see the improvement needed to avoid another relegation battle. Dyche said that he intended to make us the fittest team in the league, well so far I don't see any evidence of that, Villa were quicker and sharper all over the pitch, and even Fulham were we could have scored at least 3, they still had the lions share of possession. So I go more in hope than expectation today, I hope we get our first win of the season, the mood round Everton is bad enough at the moment and failure to win today and that mood will get a whole lot darker. Lets hope Danny is right and at 5pm we have our first win and things will begin to feel a whole lot better.

Mark Taylor
121 Posted 26/08/2023 at 11:40:48
James @115,

That was a good link even if it has made me think non-stop about Michael Keane.

However, I think what most of us need to deal with our current situation is not meditation, but medication, preferably very strong…

Tony Heron
122 Posted 26/08/2023 at 11:48:48
Mark @121 Creased me up that last comment. 😅
Dave Abrahams
123 Posted 26/08/2023 at 11:49:44
Christine (118),

If I could I would take that stiff drink off you and give it to Michael Keane at 2:55 pm today, it might steady his worn-out nerves!!

In truth, I can't see him playing today. Imagine him trying to play after last week's performance. Not just him, by the way. I don't think he handles mental pressure very well and, if he makes an early mistake, he will go to pieces which won't do him, Everton or the fans any good.

I wouldn't attempt to name the team but, if Onana plays in his usual way, that doesn't help the team or the central midfield in a positive way but throws more work their way.

I'm hoping he is exchanged for McTominay before next week and Man Utd throwing a few million to enhance the deal – they've made sillier mistakes in the last few years!

Dave Abrahams
124 Posted 26/08/2023 at 11:58:23
James (@115), I wrote my post @123 before I read your link.

Before the game toda,y I'll be doing plenty of that deep breathing. I hope I'm not holding my head in my hands at the end of the game. I'm feeling much like Brian (@120) at the moment 3 hours before the game!

John Hall
125 Posted 26/08/2023 at 12:07:33
Went to see the Doc this morning. When I walked, in he immediately said to me that I looked rather down and depressed.

"Is that tumour on your spine giving you problems again?" he asked.

"No Doc," I replied, "it is something worse than that."

"Well, what could be worse than that?" he responded?

"It's Everton, Doc. We are on TV again against Wolves today," I blurted out in a somewhat teary expression, "and I can't for the life of me see how we can score even one goal."

"Ah," he replied, "let's up the dosage on your meds to see if we can get you through this depressing period."

Wrote me a script for two cigarettes and two double Black Labels every 4 hours and remarked, "If no better after the game, then come back and see me and we can maybe look to increase the dosage a little bit more."

Could be a bottle and a pack a day the way we are shaping up!

Just want to say thanks to Bill for all the help. A striker or two might be the best remedy.


Christopher Timmins
126 Posted 26/08/2023 at 12:19:45
Dave @123,

Given our current plight, a swap resulting in McTominary plus cash coming our way would be a dream deal for us. Unfortunately, while the boy has been treated badly by Man Utd, I am not sure he would fancy a trip west along the M62.

Onana is not a player that I want to see being sold but, after last weekend, we don't have many players who are attractive to other clubs, Pickford and McNeil being the only others and at present McNeil is injured, which is a huge loss to us.

Therefore, given our plight, we can't sell the ready-to-go players and so, by deduction, Onana would be the departure that costs the least amount of short-term damage.

I think we will all be having a stiff drink around 2:55 pm today.

Oliver Molloy
127 Posted 26/08/2023 at 12:29:01
Must win, but can they?!
Mike Dolan
128 Posted 26/08/2023 at 12:33:46
If Keane and/or Maupay are in the starters today, then it would be proof that the manager totally lacks the ability to innovate in the face of extremely difficult circumstances.

Today's game is the definition of one that Everton are expected to win. A draw would be unacceptable. This is a game where the manager needs to make the right decisions and he will make his own job a lot easier by picking the right players to start the game.

I am sick of hearing that we can't score goals when we go into any game with a centre forward who can't score goals or that the defence needs sorting when at the first opportunity we play the shakiest defender in the league because 10 years ago he looked promising at Burnley.

This game is a test for the manager as much as the players. We expect to win this one.

Laurie Hartley
129 Posted 26/08/2023 at 12:45:28
I watched the 25-minute highlights of Wolves v Brighton. They are not bad going forward but poor at the back. Nunes has also done us a favour by getting himself red carded so they will miss him badly.

So, at the risk of putting the mockers on us, I think we can win this game. I also think this is a game where Maupay may get on the score sheet if he starts with Danjuma.

Patterson, Tarkowski, Branthwaite, Mykolenko
Young, Doucouré, Garner, Godfrey
Maupay, Danjuma

Up the Blues!

Mark Taylor
130 Posted 26/08/2023 at 12:47:02
Tony 122

It's gallows humour, about the only thing keeping me sane.

Mick Davies
131 Posted 26/08/2023 at 12:52:26
Christopher, if I was Dyche or Thelwell, I'd ask Chelsea if they'd swap Pickford for Lukaku. We need goals right now and he isn't wanted there, and no club seems to be able to take him.

I'm sure he'd accept Jordan's wage to return to a place where he is revered and wanted, and we could do without a goalie who costs us many points over a season with his erratic behaviour — and before anyone says, 'He saves us points', then that's his job!! We don't see other teams keepers being lauded just for doing their job!

Alex Gray
132 Posted 26/08/2023 at 13:04:27
The meditation had me in tears. Absolutely quality.

Remember lads before the match let our breathing become like the Everton defensive line, deeper and deeper and don't think about Michael Keane.

Kim Vivian
133 Posted 26/08/2023 at 13:10:36
I think we will get a win today and that will bring a very pleasant change of mood. However, winning today is not going to do much to lift my expectations for the season just yet.

Add another 7 points (quite achievable) by the end of September and some optimism will stat to return. Hopefully before the run up to Xmas which looks a bit grim.

Justin Doone
134 Posted 26/08/2023 at 13:52:22
It would be lovely to get a comfortable home win.

Whatever the outcome, it will not make or break our season but a win will certainly help the mood.

I'm not expecting anything from todays game and the fact Dom is still our shortest odds player to score tells me everything I need to know about how others view the game.

I said the same about Fulham, just do not lose, please.

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