04/04/2024 169comments  |  Jump to last
Match Preview

Amadou Onana has picked up "a few knocks" in recent games according to Sean Dyche

Amadou Onana is a slight doubt for this weekend's significant home game against fellow strugglers Burnley.

Having played three successive fixtures away from home, four of the Toffees' next five are at Goodison Park as Sean Dyche seeks to end what is now the Club's longest run in the Premier League without a win, surpassing the 12-game losing streak at the start of 1994-95 under Mike Walker.

Onana was withdrawn from the action after an hour of Everton's 1-1 draw at Newcastle on Tuesday evening, with Dyche explaining in today's press conference at Finch Farm that the Belgian has picked up "a few knocks".

That could give the manager an easy decision in central midfield where Idrissa Gueye was mostly effective in his disruptor role against the Magpies and both James Garner and André Gomes came off the bench to put in hugely promising cameos in the last half hour.

Article continues below video content

Meanwhile, Arnaut Danjuma may need another week before he is match-ready. The Dutchman has been out with ankle ligament damage since late January having made just five Premier League starts during his loan spell from Villarreal.

He has been training with the first team for the past week or so but Dyche said that "he is not quite fit yet".

Lewis Dobbin, who sustained an ankle injury of his own in training recently, is recovering well but won't be available this weekend and there is still no word on when or if Dele Alli might be able to make his first contribution to the Everton cause for almost two years.

With this being Everton's third game in the space of a week, Dyche may well look to rotate some of personnel again, perhaps by recalling Seamus Coleman to the starting XI at the expense of Ben Godfrey and dropping Ashley Young to the bench to allow Jack Harrison the opportunity to re-stake his claim.

The Gaffer has used the 38-year-old Young in back-to-back games before but may opt for Harrison's energy in the press against a team that likes to play out from the back and can sometimes create problems for themselves in doing so.

For that reason, Abdoulaye Doucouré is a likely starter again despite his struggle for form since returning from a hamstring injury and Dominic Calvert-Lewin is expected to get the nod up front having broken his long goal drought with the equalising penalty at St James's Park.

In addition to long-term absentees Aaron Ramsey, Nathan Redmond and Luca Kolesoho, Clarets boss Vincent Kompany will be without the injured Jordan Beyer and Ameen Al-Dakhil but Lorenz Assignon is available again after serving a one-match suspension.

Having looked dead and buried not long ago, Burnley have been showing signs of life in recent weeks which will ensure that this will not be an easy game at all, especially given Everton's iffy record on their own patch.

Kompany's side are unbeaten in four now having earned creditable draws at West Ham and Chelsea amongst a home win over Brentford and a draw with Wolves at Turf Moor on Tuesday evening.

Those six points have moved them to within as many of the Toffees, a gap that could, of course, be closer should they do the unthinkable and win this weekend and the verdict from the second independent commission (one that will almost certainly come either tomorrow, Friday, or Monday) recommends another points deduction.

Dyche will be impressing on this players the imperative to do everything to prevent the former and to ensure that the point salvaged against Newcastle be used as a spingboard to finally end this tortuous winless sequence that began in the wake of the reverse of this fixture at Turf Moor in December.

Kick-off: 3pm, Saturday 6 April 2024
Referee: Michael Oliver
VAR: David Coote
Last Time: Everton 3 - 1 Burnley 

Predicted Line-up: Pickford, Coleman, Tarkowski, Branthwaite, Mykolenko, Gueye, Garner, Harrison, McNeil, Doucouré, Calvert-Lewin


Reader Comments (169)

Note: the following content is not moderated or vetted by the site owners at the time of submission. Comments are the responsibility of the poster. Disclaimer ()

Les Callan
1 Posted 04/04/2024 at 16:26:06
Some good news at last.
John Raftery
2 Posted 04/04/2024 at 16:27:19
Including the rearranged derby four of the next five matches are at Goodison.
Peter Mills
3 Posted 04/04/2024 at 16:33:37
Dave A’s rosaries are being answered!
Mark Murphy
4 Posted 04/04/2024 at 16:41:00
Oh dear.
What a shame.
Never mind.
Dave Abrahams
5 Posted 04/04/2024 at 16:49:59
Peter (2), I know your post was tongue in cheek but I think more fans will miss Onana not playing, strange as it seems to me.
Stephen Graham
6 Posted 04/04/2024 at 17:15:50
John (2), that's our bogie ground.
John Raftery
7 Posted 04/04/2024 at 17:16:51
There have been games in which Onana has been missed and games like Tuesday’s in which, after his early departure, he was not missed at all. Ramadan won’t have helped but I do wonder if he has been carrying some sort of injury for several months. He often looks to be playing within himself, waiting for others to do something instead of leading the way himself.

He is still a young player, only sixteen months older than Lewis Dobbin and as such is still learning the deep midfield role. One thing he certainly isn’t is a box to box midfielder. He doesn’t shoot, rarely heads the ball on target and shows little appetite for driving forward with the ball.

Brian Wilkinson
8 Posted 04/04/2024 at 17:28:19
Garner or Gomes to come in, not a bad option, just as long as we can have Onana on the touchline doing his cheerleading.

On another matter, it’s a pity the cameras never went onto Patterson, when Calvert-Lewin knocked Dyche over, I bet he was laughing his nuts off.

Pete Neilson
9 Posted 04/04/2024 at 17:32:09
When we signed him I think it was Alan Myers who commented that Onana didn’t yet have a definitive position. Maybe that’s still the case, maybe he’s playing well within himself, maybe our team and formation doesn’t suit him, maybe that’s his natural game. Whatever it is I find him frustrating to watch as I think he could offer a lot more.
Danny O’Neill
10 Posted 04/04/2024 at 17:36:36
I think we have to take into account the situation surrounding these young players.

I don't care too much who takes to the pitch, just give everything and leave it out there, because we will.

Rob Jones
11 Posted 04/04/2024 at 17:47:38
Wow. We're celebrating the injury of one of our own players.

What a healthy fan base...

Neil Lawson
12 Posted 04/04/2024 at 18:07:37
There is some chat around certain players being less than committed to Dyche. Who knows? However, in Onana's case, I do wonder just how much his performance is adversely impacted by the strictures placed on him ( and his teammates) by the Manager. I can not ever see him truly flourishing and displaying his undoubted skills with us but he does look like the sort of player that could prove to be outstanding in a team that play like Arsenal or Spurs ( other teams are available). He is a talent and as long as he is at Goodison I would want him to be fit and available. If the manager prefers Ashley Young, perhaps that may speak volumes as to where he is capable of taking us. ( Down?)
Peter Mills
13 Posted 04/04/2024 at 18:15:00
Dave#5, it was, of course, tongue in cheek. I’m one of those who believes Onana is a good footballer, with the ability to become better.
Duncan McDine
14 Posted 04/04/2024 at 18:20:44
Rob 11. I'm pretty sure that none of the comments (suggesting his absense is a bonus) are to be taken seriously. This is a "go to" quip for footy fans worldwide. Not very imaginative, but also nothing to get offended by.

Danny 10. You sound more concerned about proving your commitment to watching Everton than you do about the game itself. Surely you have formed an opinion about the ability and effectiveness of various players within our squad... otherwise, what are you watching?

Stephen 6. That made me laugh (and almost cry!).

Dave Abrahams
15 Posted 04/04/2024 at 18:26:40
Peter (13), Fair enough Peter a lot of fans think he will getter better in the future while my questioning him is because I cannot honestly see what benefit he is to Everton now.
Danny O’Neill
16 Posted 04/04/2024 at 18:46:28
Duncan and others.

I watch the players and the team. I've been committed to watching Everton since I can remember, earliest memories being around 1975.

Onana will become a good player. I don't think it will be with us.

Branthwaite is going to be class. Again, I'm not sure it will be with us.

Of course I have opinions on players. But to make a decision on young players is like saying John Stones was useless.

But I'll still be here concerned about watching the team I've followed all my life.

I don't pick the team. I just follow Everton.

Mark Murphy
17 Posted 04/04/2024 at 18:50:20
Rob, there's a difference between “celebrating” and shrugging.

I'm with Dave A - I don't think he brings anything to Everton.
I've said it time after time, I think he's a good footballer – just not making the difference that I'm sure he can, for us.

He's worth more to Everton in the bank than on the pitch, in my opinion.

Charles Ward
18 Posted 04/04/2024 at 18:51:21
Brian @8,

When Calvert-Lewin clattered Dyche my heart went into my mouth.

I expected an outbreak of bad karma after me sniggering at Klopp clattering Tsimakas in similar circumstances.

Dale Self
19 Posted 04/04/2024 at 18:51:56
There is a direct tradeoff between the offensive positioning of your CDM and the risk exposure to your back four. Onana is not holding back, we simply don't have enough speed to integrate the CDM into our offence attack.
Barry Rathbone
20 Posted 04/04/2024 at 18:59:55
He knows he's a decent player (not great – decent) and probably suffers from the Rooney attitude of "those alongside me are shite".

Lacking the emotional attachment of Rooney maybe he is biding his time trying to avoid serious injury ready for a move to a decent club.

Sounds a sensible plan to me.

Duncan McDine
21 Posted 04/04/2024 at 19:05:50
Agree with you Danny about Branthwaite... unfortunately all of the best young players during my life have moved away from Everton and I fear he will follow suit (I'm a few years younger so missed the best bits).

Onana however doesn't use his physical attributes enough to convince me that he'll one day be a top midfielder. Hope I'm proved wrong, but either way, his future lies elsewhere.

I hope you don't take offense to my earlier post... I just think it's way more interesting to hear your views about the players, club etc, than to hear that "you'll be there giving 100% etc"... we can take that for granted.

Ant Purcell
22 Posted 04/04/2024 at 19:08:22
Shit player slows us down to fucking death.

6ft-odd, can't command midfield. Waster shithouse.

Mark Murphy
23 Posted 04/04/2024 at 19:17:17
Barry, that's a fair point.

I don't dislike the bloke – I just don't think he's playing to his undoubted abilities for the team. For whatever reason that may be, it's not in Everton's interest to accommodate him in the last 9 games.

Danny O’Neill
24 Posted 04/04/2024 at 19:18:20
Totally Duncan,

Onana should come good, just not with Everton.

Branthwaite, totally, again not with Everton I fear.

Are you at the match this weekend.

Let me know. The Harlech Castle has become the usual meeting place for the usual suspects.

Robert Williams
25 Posted 04/04/2024 at 19:18:48
BR 20 - Deffo saving himself, it's called 'self-preservation' while giving the impression of not!!

£40, 50, 60M mentioned, so I suppose with so few games left we should bite the bullet play him carefully and sell. We have others that can do just as good a job, but will not fetch his selling price.

We should manage his cameo pieces, stay up and sell to the highest bidder, asap.

Duncan McDine
26 Posted 04/04/2024 at 19:34:46
No, I was at Bournemouth with fellow TW'er Paul Smith, but don't get to many games these days. We will put faces to names one day I'm sure.
Danny O’Neill
27 Posted 04/04/2024 at 19:40:57
Hope to meet you soon, Duncan.

Bournemouth to Newcastle to Everton (home city but don't like referring to it by name!). Then Chelsea. A relatively short trip for me but my least favourite trip because of their fans.

I'm working on my sister as she works at Anfield and used to get me tickets in amongst them, but she doesn't trust me anymore!

Give me a shout at the next match, Duncan, and god bless.

Shaun Laycock
28 Posted 04/04/2024 at 19:45:31
Onana has the ability but doesn't have a position. I think being a No 8 would suit. He's useful in both boxes and can see a pass. He needs to carry the ball better.

The problem is, we don't have enough players around him and he is operating to team orders. He's a bit Ya Ya Toure or Patrick Viera for me. I agree, probably worth more to us in the bank.

Colin Callaghan
29 Posted 04/04/2024 at 20:12:56
Probably the most infuriating player we have but only because he doesn't know how to play the game yet. Organization over creativity is the Dyche way and that doesn't come naturally for Onana.

Frank was the one who bought him. To be fair if Onana wanted to learn from Frank, that's exactly the types of signings we were hoping for under the lampard regime. Add a few chelsea rejects (broja maybe gallagher) and who knows where we'd be.

Let's hope we can sell him to Barcelona (out of the prem preferably), for twice as much as we paid, plus a player or two

Les Callan
30 Posted 04/04/2024 at 20:27:16
Colin @ 29.

“He doesn't know how to play the game yet.“

I despair, I really do. But hey ho, we are going to get mega bucks for him from Barcelona, or is the Bayern? Maybe Man Utd?

Colin Callaghan
31 Posted 04/04/2024 at 20:31:03
Les players grow up all the time playing pick up or what have you. Not 11vs11 ultimately. He's a very young lad and his experience is very limited.

I may have been a bit optimistic with my valuation but we will turn a profit on him, I'm sure of it.

Ernie Baywood
32 Posted 04/04/2024 at 20:36:07
We don't have a great deal of quality, so we definitely need quantity.

Bringing on fresh legs on the hour was as much the difference as who we brought on. Any first 11 we put out isn't good enough to play 90 minutes.

That's why so many of us have been complaining about the manager's lack of subs being an issue.

Neil Lawson
34 Posted 04/04/2024 at 22:31:20
And he whose name can not be mentioned made significant changes at half time when his team were winning but not playing up to scratch. Isn't that what a manager should be doing in all sports and in all walks of life? Change things when required to stimulate improvement in performance.
Michael Connelly
35 Posted 04/04/2024 at 23:20:48
Liverpool were able to pick up Mac Allister from Brighton for £35m in the summer.

Based on that, I'd put Onana's value at about £1m, maybe £2m.

Phil Lewis
36 Posted 05/04/2024 at 00:34:24
Truly great players display their worth by Onana's age. What has he done so far that warrants the speculation that one day he will become a great player, either for us or some other team? Absolutely nothing. I don't even consider him to be an average player.

Occasionally he shows a glimmer of ability, but more often than not he cannot even get the basics right. There is no urgency to his game at all, often appearing to stroll through a match with indifference. Certainly not what I'd expect from such a young man. Perhaps his mind is on a move elsewhere, who'd know?

I do not applaud injury to any player. I just want him gone, to the highest bidder, ASAP.

Rob Jones
38 Posted 05/04/2024 at 02:02:08
Alternatively, Michael, different players perform different functions...
Paul Ferry
39 Posted 05/04/2024 at 03:29:09
Ant Purcell 22: "Shit player slows us down to fucking death. 6ft-odd, can't command midfield. Waster shithouse".

Good analysis Ant. Thoughtful. Articulate. Considered. I like that you looked carefully at all sides of the issue (unlike most of the so-called "posters" on here who makes these threads look silly and inarticulate and an insult to ToffeeWeb's name and fame).

You waste no words unlike that "waster shithouse" Onana. You get straight to the point. Yours is what I call "a thinking post", unlike most of the shithouse would-be "experts" on here.

Jay Harris
40 Posted 05/04/2024 at 03:30:28
It is disappointing that so many Blues seem to have Onana as their scapegoat. This lad is world class and everyone in top-class football sees it.

His passing and retention of the ball and calm manner is mistaken for not being dynamic enough. He doesn't run around like a headless chicken like Harrison but his game is very measured.

When we see him playing for Barca in La Liga, we will all be saying "Why did we let him go?"

We have few top-class players and we need to keep them to build a team around them – not see them as some cash cow.

Danny O’Neill
41 Posted 05/04/2024 at 06:11:26
Bayern, Barcelona, Arsenal, Manchester United all reportedly interested in the 22-year-old. All rumours and speculation, but not a bad portfolio.

Well, let's focus on Everton and the match ahead. That's all we can do. He's our player until at least the end of the season, as is young Branthwaite.

Michael Whitehead
42 Posted 05/04/2024 at 06:27:47
So this is surely the definition of a mus-win game, right?

As good as the point at Newcastle was Tuesday night, it was still a shit show for 60 minutes where Pickford saved our bacon.

If we can't beat Burnley at home, then you think we may not stay up – especially with another points deduction.

As for Onana, there's an easy comparison to make really. He plays in a position where I've seen people like Lee Carsley, Gareth Barry etc. He's not as good as either of those were and at 22, I look at the likes of Cole Palmer, Phil Foden and they are way way ahead of him as development goes.

I hoped we'd see more of the Onana I saw in Dyche's first game at home to Arsenal, going on rangy runs and stretching those telepathic legs and his athleticism, but we never see it. I don't know who replaces him tomorrow but if Gana plays then we probably don't really miss Onana much anyway because they do the same thing in every aspect.

Tomorrow is about winning, and being bold in our play.

Jim Bennings
43 Posted 05/04/2024 at 06:48:37
If anything summed up a player's style, then it was Onana's penalty against Fulham in December.

Anyone can miss a penalty but the way the lad missed it pretty much summed up how he plays the game, so casual and leisurely.

Terry Farrell
44 Posted 05/04/2024 at 06:49:03
Jay, I'm with you. He is not out of his depth surrounded by Man City players in the Premier League and is a first pick for Belgium.

I too would like him to drive forward more and make things happen but we have only seen glimpses of that. Better with him in the team than out and at a Top 4 club he would thrive.

Dave Evans
45 Posted 05/04/2024 at 07:12:41
It seems Onana is going the same way as Gordon. Stones and Richarlison. In the 'too shit for Everton bin'.

Onana rarely loses the ball on receiving it. He passes the ball to our players. A rarity in our team. He also makes some amazing tackles at both ends of the pitch. And yes he can carry it forward at pace, something we witnessed in his early days with us and will probably only see again in a different set up, set of lnstructions and team.

I hope Gana puts in one of his stella, all over the place performances. We will need it.

Derek Knox
46 Posted 05/04/2024 at 07:21:00
Jay, Terry and others, I couldn't agree more but the financial mess that we are in through no fault of the fans, bestowed on us, by Mosh and the Maggot (aka Burke and Hare) may leave us with no other option. Then again, we don't know exactly how much of a financial miasma we are in.

Hoping for a win, but how many times do I, and everyone else (almost) say that ? I don't think this will be easy for several reasons ; our hitherto lack of scoring - Burnley's determination to survive, no matter how slim the chances. They have had some decent results recently, and don't look as bad as we have on occasion.

Add the spice of Dyche facing his old Club, the fact we have a Referee who seemingly hates us, so no impartial decisions expected there. Not going myself but wish a big welcome to Jonathan Oppenheimer in my absence, and hopefully too a welcome result no matter how slim the victory is !

Mark Murphy
47 Posted 05/04/2024 at 07:33:31
Dave, it’s not that he’s too shit for Everton, ironically it’s probably the opposite. Anyone saying he’s shit doesn’t know football.
He’s just not playing to his full potential for this team.
He’ll move on to be a great but for us he’s just nursing his stats.
In my opinion (and several others who I respect for their football insight).
Derek Thomas
48 Posted 05/04/2024 at 08:01:21
Jim Bennings @ 43: "So casual and leisurely." I agree, he-makes Perry Como look like St Vitus.

Great business if we make money on him, good business if we 'break even'.

But - right now, sadly, we won't miss him as a player as much as we'll miss the money he brings in.

Sam Bowen
49 Posted 05/04/2024 at 08:19:50
Some very strange comments on here regarding Onana but I guess that’s the beauty of opinions. It’s clear to me that he’s an extremely good player who will move on this summer to a big club and everyone will start talking about what a talent he is. We don’t play through the midfield, how on earth are any of them supposed to stand out when they barely get a chance to play with the ball. Movement is non existent, the full backs are bang average on the ball and barely run forward, width is a massive issue as well. I’m not sure what people expect him to do other than what he currently does. He wins all his duels and barely gives the ball away when he eventually gets it, all the stats back that up. He’s at the wrong club with the wrong manager but he’s a bloody good footballer.
Jim Bennings
50 Posted 05/04/2024 at 08:23:52
I hope he does go to a big club and tests himself with the better players out there.

For us, he's probably the wrong player and we are also the wrong club for him right now.

I don't think we are or ever have been a fan base that tolerates a casual attitude unless you can back it up, a bit similar to Yakubu in his first season, very lackadaisical style but goals backed it up for him.

Jim Bennings
51 Posted 05/04/2024 at 08:25:43
When I say big club also, I mean a European heavyweight, I don't mean a manufactured club in England.
Laurie Hartley
52 Posted 05/04/2024 at 08:44:08
Dave # 45 - I have noticed the tackles he puts in but I think he is capable of delivering much more going forward.

I remember how he pushed the ball past Odergard on our left wing and left him trailing in his wake when we played Arsenal.

I think he will end up at Arsenal. He is tailor made for the way they play.

In the meantime, if he does start against Burnley I hope he plays to his full potential.

Jonathan Oppenheimer
53 Posted 05/04/2024 at 08:46:47
Derek 46, thanks for the welcome. I’m at Heathrow now awaiting a coach up north.

Right now I’m in the Danny O’Neill camp of simply wanting us to leave everything on the pitch tomorrow, playing as if our lives depended on it, because truly they do. I’m just wanting to see Seamus or Patterson start at right back, and Harrison out wide instead of Young.

I agree with those who view Onana as a top-class player who is both young and had too much expected of him because of his price tag. And he’s been asked to play in a central midfield with an aging Gana, a limited Doucoure (whose injury really killed our momentum in December), no pace out wide, and fullbacks with limited passing skills. He may never be a world beater, but he’ll certainly come good in the next few years, as he’s shown at times with us, even if not often enough. Hoping he comes off the bench tomorrow to at least give us a solid 30 minutes.

Let’s hope the crowd stays positive tomorrow even if things get nervy, which hopefully they won’t. We’re due for 3 points.

Mal van Schaick
54 Posted 05/04/2024 at 09:07:45
There were some signs in the Newcastle game that we may be coming into form, just in time for the Burnley game, so I am hoping Calvert Lewin gets on the score sheet and we beat them as we did last November in the cup game.

As for Onana, he appears to be committed, and puts the effort in, even if he can be somewhat wayward at times, so we do need him to start.

Christopher Timmins
55 Posted 05/04/2024 at 09:09:04
A game that we simply must wins as we have to build on the mid week result and simply cannot let the win less streak continue as it has to be sapping the confidence levels.

Expecting a win and hoping for another DCL goal.

Paul Ferry
56 Posted 05/04/2024 at 09:10:42
Jonathan St. Paul O, have a fantastic weekend mate and make sure to get to the Harlech Castle on County Road.
Danny O’Neill
57 Posted 05/04/2024 at 09:12:00
Enjoy your trip Jonathan.

Be sure to go to the Harlech Castle on County Road and meet the gang. Hopefully the weather will be kind and you can stand on the pavement! Unlike me, take your coat just in case.

Players will always divide opinions.

If you look back, Howard Kendall wasn't convinced on Kevin Sheedy. But Colin Harvey convinced him.

Football is always opinion based with regards to players.

Jonathan Oppenheimer
58 Posted 05/04/2024 at 09:18:24
As I said on another post, our winning ways begin at Harlech Castle tomorrow. I’ll be there!
Neil Lawson
59 Posted 05/04/2024 at 09:35:14
Lyndon. Only just looked at your predicted 11. Sincerely hope that you are wrong. That is the 11 who, currently, can not win and who will get us relegated. Unfortunately, your judgement is often all too accurate. Mind you, given the ingrained stubbornness and resistance to change by our dynamic manager, it is not too difficult to make the prediction ( albeit he won't drop Godfrey). If that is the line up I fear a very difficult and painful afternoon.
Brian Harrison
60 Posted 05/04/2024 at 09:36:23
Despite what position in the league our opponents are they come here full of confidence after getting a draw at Chelsea despite playing with 10 men for long parts of the game. They also score goals which is something we are struggling to do, they will also adopt the attitude of lets have a go as what have we got to lose.
Whereas there will be some nervousness around Goodison given we haven't won a game since before Xmas, albeit against tomorrows opponents. We need to be on the front foot from the start and lets hope we take whatever chances come along. I would like to see Coleman start I would have Garner, Gueye and Doucoure in midfield and have Gomes just in front of the 3 midfield players and McNeil and DCL up top.

I worry a bit about Tarkowski as for me he hasn't been at the races for the last 6 or so games, his positioning for Newcastles opener was poor and he nearly scored an own goal. Also when teams break on us he is left wanting with his lack of pace. Fortunately for Tarkowski we don't have many alternatives, although I don't think Keane is as bad as everyone makes out, but with his lack of game time it might be a risk to far.

Rob Dolby
61 Posted 05/04/2024 at 09:46:56
Is Onana that bad? What do people expect from him?

What do people expect out of a centre mid in the modern game?

Someone above mentioned rather having Carsley and then said Palmer and foden are miles ahead of Onana what do you want from a central midfielder?

The best centre mids in the league in my opinion are Rodri and Rice, they look fantastic next to debruyne or odegard.

Palmer is in contention for player of the season. Would he look as good if he didn't have Fernandez or Caicedo?

If we had Casimero as a centre mid, one of the most decorated players in modern football, what would he bring to the current Everton team?
Would he be able to defend, attack, score with left right and head? As it feels like people on here expect Onana to do all of the above. The lad is the current whipping boy.

Anyhow back to tomorrow's game.

I want us to force Burnley defenders into mistakes by playing too much football. They have some tidy footballers so we can't be giving them time on the ball.

Coleman tarks Branthwaite Myko
Garner gana Onana McNeil

Keep patient and show a bit of composure in the final 3rd.


Mark Murphy
62 Posted 05/04/2024 at 10:01:43
“In the meantime, if he does start against Burnley I hope he plays to his full potential.”
In a nutshell.
And what Jim Bennings said as well.
I don’t really get why people are getting upset about the divide of opinion on him?
He’s a good player for sure - I personally would rather see Garner and Gana in the team before him at the moment.
I totally agree that IF we had De Britney, Rice et al he would probably fit right in but we don’t.
Add to that IF we could get two good calibre midfielders in in the summer, one of them attacking, I’d love to have another season out of Onana. But that’s unlikely to happen with our resources. IF we want to bring anyone in we have to sell someone worth a few Bob. Step up future world class Amadeus Onana.
Dave Abrahams
63 Posted 05/04/2024 at 10:09:36
Paul (39) I think your response to Ant @ (22) was a bit over the top.

I thought Ant was judging what he sees over the full ninety minutes plus added on time not on bits and pieces of the game.

I know most of the people I see and know before the game and in town when we mention Onana their opinion is short and sweet “ Fuckin crap” is their estimation.

So when I read some of the over hyped versions on here of how he always does this and he never does that based on the full game is really and truly unbelievable. to me.

Jack Convery
64 Posted 05/04/2024 at 10:18:01
Pickford, Coleman, Tarkowski, Branthwaite, Mykolenko, Young, Onana, Garner, McNeill, Beto, DCL.

Leave Gana and Doucoure on the bench and bring them on after an hour. We need players who can pressurise Burnleys pass it out from the back style of play, from the off. Ramadan will mean they can't eat until sunset. Let Beto challenge and rundown the defenders as they pass the ball about and have Garner, McNeill, DCL and Young ready to pick up the pieces and SCORE GOALS.

Chris Leyland
65 Posted 05/04/2024 at 10:19:28
Rob - to answer then question what do people expect of Onana…
I’d expect him to take ownership of a game (any game just one) and really go for it rather than seemingly play within himself. I’d expect him to carry the ball forward more than he does rather than lay it square or backwards for the safe option that gives him high pass completion rates and I’d expect him to stop celebrating throw ins like we’ve won the league. I’d expect that when he loses the ball he doesn’t wave his arms round whilst jogging back.
There is clear a technically gifted player in there but he needs to impose himself so much more on games and ‘go for it’ just once in a while.
Rob Halligan
66 Posted 05/04/2024 at 10:37:43
Mark # 62………Is that DeBritney Spears? She’d probably fit in well at Man City as well!
Mark Murphy
67 Posted 05/04/2024 at 10:41:22
Aye - and Amadeus in centre mid!
Kin text predictor making a mockery of my carefully thought out and insightful posts…
Jim Bennings
68 Posted 05/04/2024 at 10:45:55
To be fair in some ways to Onana, I don't think Dyche is really the type of manager to let you take too many chances and just go for it.

Our fullbacks the same, he likes them to just defend.
Our wide players don't score and at times as a player it must be quite frustrating never being given a license to have a go a bit more often.

Andy Crooks
69 Posted 05/04/2024 at 10:47:50
Jonathan Oppenheimer, you're on for the weekend of a lifetime. Let's hope you bring some much needed luck. For quite a while I had never seen Everton lose. Well, that ship sailed some time ago!!
Anyway, have a ball. You'll meet the very best of people.
Love the Harlech and the Blues there. When you go inside to buy a round of drinks allow yourself about four hours. Danny, Derek, Dave, in fact any of the lads, make their way in and return in about a minute laden with pints. I seem to don a cloak of invisibility. I suspect that standing six deep away from the bar and nervously mouthing " excuse me" is the wrong approach.
Enjoy every moment. Make sure you're in in time for zcars
Mark Murphy
70 Posted 05/04/2024 at 10:51:42
Anyone else have this vision of Jonathan O putting on the dead dark sunglasses when the siren goes off pre match?
Hope you have a great time Jonathan and the blues make you proud!
Dave Abrahams
71 Posted 05/04/2024 at 11:00:50
Jim (68), Jim what stopped him taking a few chances when he played for football loving Frank Lampard, he was the same then as now.
Mark Murphy
72 Posted 05/04/2024 at 11:04:25
Jon / Andy
I used to work behind a bar. When it’s really busy you serve whoever catches your eye and orders vocally. It’s no use standing there politely expecting them to ask you.
I always stand next to someone being served and try to work out which way the barmaid (always barmaids in the Harlech) will turn away from the till. Then just say loud and clear “ a pint of (Guinness) please love” and then when she’s getting that give her the rest of the order in one go. NEVER order drinks one at a time like some numpties do. It winds up both the barmaid and the bloke beside you waiting for his turn. And yes, order the Guinness first so she can get the rest of the order while that’s settling.
If you then say “and one yourself?” You’ll be sure of good service later on.
But they are good in the Harlech - they know their clientele.
Jim Wilson
73 Posted 05/04/2024 at 11:05:53
I never thought I would say this but I would like Gomes back in the team in front of Gueye and Garner. Our passing has to improve and Doucoure can be a very useful sub. Burnley could have the lions share of possession unless we address our weakness of keeping the ball.

My team: Pickford, Coleman, Tarkowski, Branthwaite, Mykolenko, Gueye, Garner, Patterson, McNeil, Gomes, Calvert-Lewin

Rob Halligan
74 Posted 05/04/2024 at 11:06:06
When was the last time we played on a Friday night? Luton away has been brought forward to Friday 3rd May with an 8pm kick off.
Les Callan
75 Posted 05/04/2024 at 11:06:24
Am I reading this correctly. That’s two people who have referred to Onana as “ world class “. Come on lads. I ask you.
John Raftery
76 Posted 05/04/2024 at 11:21:36
Rob (74),

Was it Man United in the Cup last season?

Before then I can't think of any since Aston Villa away in August 2019. That was a 2-0 defeat.

Brian Harrison
77 Posted 05/04/2024 at 11:28:51
Dave @71,

I can only think it's an age thing as to why some of our fans think Onana is World class. You and I have seen really world class midfield players and have been lucky to have some play for our club; I think Peter Reid was the last top quality midfield player we had.

All the great midfield players dominate from Minute 1. I never saw Reid, Harvey, Kendall, Kay, Collins or Gabriel go missing for large sections of any game. I would have mentioned the non-stop Alan Ball but some may class him as a forward.

Many say Onana doesn't give the ball away, but most of his passes are 5- and 10-yard passes back to the back 4 player he got the ball off.

He never carries the ball forward with any intent and I tend to think that he is more interested in his pass completion stats than having an impact on the game.

He has played in most of the 13 games we have failed to win, and he has to share some of the blame for that. The cry goes up, "He would look good in a good side!" Well he hardly impressed playing for Belgium against England.

As for World class midfield players in the Premier League, I think defensively Rodri is the best followed by Rice, attacking central midfield players Foden, De Bruyne

Charles Ward
78 Posted 05/04/2024 at 11:34:57
Three points should be achievable here and with the point at Newcastle, four in a week is good return.

Just hope the Premier League don't burst this bubble of positivity by announcing any points deduction today.

Alan J Thompson
79 Posted 05/04/2024 at 11:36:20
Why is everyone on Onana's back? Which other players are doing what you are asking of Onana? In my opinion, none of them.

At least Onana shows for the ball and then his only options are to return it to the now unmarked man who passed to him while McNeil, Garner, Harrison, Doucoure all stand watching.

Gana is alright buzzing around but rarely does anything positive attacking wise. But then why bother when for the majority of the time Pickford just hoofs down the other end — so much so that he even takes free kicks near the halfway line.

Mykolenko gets similar criticism because he doesn't just cross the ball without looking and pauses when he can't see anyone or anyone in a decent position in the middle, but then that's the type of football we play.

But hey, let's just wait for Onana to show the way.

Rob Halligan
80 Posted 05/04/2024 at 11:38:19
John, I actually meant a league game on a Friday night. I remember playing Burnley at home on a Friday, a game we won 2-0, but can't remember what year that was.

I think it may have been before the Villa game you refer too though.

Robert Tressell
81 Posted 05/04/2024 at 11:43:31
It is bizarre to me that the complaints about our midfield are levelled at Onana while players like Gueye and Doucoure seem to be excused for being terrible footballers who severely limit our capacity to play decent football. But anyway, plenty has been said on this subject already.

Against Burnley it is a shame that we will be without Danjuma and even Dobbin. Without them, we offer almost nothing in attacking wide areas. This might even be the game to go 3-5-2 with Beto and Calvert-Lewin up front together and a midfield 3 of Gueye, Onana and Garner. It's a bit unconventional but Doucoure's goal threat seems to have been rumbled and we need to find some other way to cause the opposition problems.

Otherwise, Burnley might just let us huff and puff with the ball and catch us on the counter. Datro Fofana will be a dangerman for the opposition and someone we should be looking at as a loan signing from Chelsea for next season. He's raw, but he has pace and good movement and will get goals at this level and could develop into Europa League and beyond level player.

Les Callan
82 Posted 05/04/2024 at 11:44:40
Brian @77.

I think you are probably right. What's more, I think it is indicative of just how low the expectations have fallen amongst our fan base.

Those players you mentioned were all gems. You and I have been privileged to have watched true world class players. I've seen 4 championship-winning sides. Onana, I'm afraid, wouldn't have got on the bench of any one of them.

Robert Tressell
83 Posted 05/04/2024 at 11:48:18
Alan, I think many of the fans get on Onana's back because he has the audacity to be linked with Champions League clubs – without having actually achieved anything of note for Everton.

Similar story with Lukaku, Stones, Richarlison and Gordon.

James Marshall
84 Posted 05/04/2024 at 12:11:38
Onana is a bit of a Deschamps or Busquets type player to my mind – he doesn't really stand out but is important to the team regardless.

He'll probably go on to have a great career at a big European club, but he doesn't really fit in at a club like Everton because we're shite, so he looks shite.

He's only 22, I think people forget that.

Charles Ward
85 Posted 05/04/2024 at 12:21:52

I don't think Onana has shown any of the impact Stones, Lukaku and Richarlison made when they were playing. Gordon wasn't here long enough to give a true impression.

Declan Rice played in a not-too-good West Ham team but his potential stood out. Not sure Onana's does though.

Maybe a case of the Emporer's New Clothes?

Dave Abrahams
86 Posted 05/04/2024 at 12:37:13
Robert (83),

Come on, being linked with top teams, and they could be all the top teams in the world, doesn't make him any better or worse than he is.

When they actually come in and make a concrete bid for him, then we'll know if he is staying or going, and how he plays for his future club won't alter the fact that he wasn't much benefit to Everton while he was here.

The benefit might be the size of the fee we get for him.

Robert Tressell
87 Posted 05/04/2024 at 12:49:12
And yet, Charles, he is strongly linked with the likes of Bayern, Barcelona, Man Utd and (because of their wealth) Newcastle – and is consistently rated outside of ToffeeWeb as one of the top young players in his specialist position in world football.

It wouldn't be a huge surprise to see him at the RS next season because they currently lack such a specialist in that very position (apart from Endo who is more of a stop-gap).

These clubs do prize what he is very good at – hence the big fees for the likes of Caicedo and Lavia last summer. It is not the most glamourous or visible role – even less so in a team that is ill-equipped to play front-foot football and (as Alan notes) offers nothing in the way of passing options to the player receiving the ball in Onana's specialist position.

What Onana is never going to do is assist, score goals or drive forward to break opposition defensive lines. This seems desperately disappointing to many Everton fans - who seem to expect a £100m player for the £30m we spent (paid for on the drip).

But Champions League sides do not need him (or even want him) to do this – because his role will be to let the players around him get on with this sort of stuff. He will be required not to vacate his position ahead of the centre-backs. It wouldn't even be a surprise to see him deployed as a centre-back in future.

I don't think anyone is claiming Onana is world class right now – but he plays his position in a style that should translate well to a Champions League club.

Raymond Fox
88 Posted 05/04/2024 at 12:50:58
There were quite a few on here who didn't think Lukaku or Stones were any good!

Unfortunately we are not sure to beat Burnley, we don't score enough goals – I know that's stating the bleeding obvious but, if they score, we will struggle to score two; that's the reality.

I'm praying for a win somehow, we definitely need one.

Jeff Spiers
89 Posted 05/04/2024 at 12:56:36
Slightly off topic. Our away support is from another planet. What grounds have ToffeeWebbers visited, and the best and worst of their supporters.
Christopher Timmins
90 Posted 05/04/2024 at 14:02:13
Rob #80, it was the end of Silva's first year in charge. We were in the middle of a good run at that time.
Andy Crooks
91 Posted 05/04/2024 at 14:07:02
One of the Racing Post pundits makes Burnley win or draw the bet of the weekend. I like that. I hate us being tipped
Danny O’Neill
92 Posted 05/04/2024 at 14:15:14
Jeff, I always enjoy the trips to Fulham and Brentford.

Brighton too. Good mingling with their supporters in the town centre.

Good days out and no hassle with the home supporters. There was a time when the away section at Craven Cottage was next to the neutral end and both sets of supporters mixed, including on the concourse.

West Ham is okay too. Lot's of banter with their supporters but mostly harmless.

Probably the worse has to be Chelsea for me. Great view, but their supporters are arrogant and spend more time goading the opposition.

Colin Malone
93 Posted 05/04/2024 at 14:25:07
Jay @ 40.

Well said. All the top clubs are looking at Onana, to some he's not good enough for Everton. I've got to laugh while typing.

Alehouse football does not suit good footballers, even Garner is suffering with the Dycheball.

Chris Leyland
94 Posted 05/04/2024 at 14:39:06
Danny - wonder what your experience is at Spurs away?

I've sat in the home section a few times there and always found them to be knobs.

Rob Dolby
95 Posted 05/04/2024 at 14:56:13
Len 82,

What do you think of modern football? Is it better or worse than your halcyon days?

You have a very high opinion of Kevin Langley if your saying Onana isn't as good as him.

I am not sure how many of the 80s team would stand out in today's prem?

We all judge players and have our personal favourites but some of the stick Onana gets in a struggling team is beyond belief.

For the last 30 years, expectations have been lowered by the management of the club. It hasn't altered the fans ability to judge a player, in reality the team has gradually got worse and we are judging worse players.

Mark Murphy
96 Posted 05/04/2024 at 14:56:31
Jeff, I go mainly to aways south of Brum.
My favourites are Palace (apart from that annoying big drum) Fulham and Brighton.
Wolves is “ok” but for some reason Wolves fans seem to think we (scousers that is) are beneath them… West Brom used to be great and I liked going to Southampton but their fans could also be absolute plums!
The worst by far is Chelsea. It’s just toxic around that ground. They are fcuking horrible. After the 2-2 they were baying for blood and goading our lot. I was on my own and feeling stupid so I put on my pathetic plastic scouse accent and asked one of the gobby ones “wears partridge greeen there lad?” He blinked, looked confused, then said, straight down that road there mate” then carried on railing against our fans..
Spurs are horrible too and seem to be able to suss us out even if we don’t speak. I had two of them just staring hard at me on the tube for no reason that I could see - I wasn’t wearing anything identifying me with football let alone the Blues.
Arsenal, on the other hand, is always fine.
Danny O’Neill
97 Posted 05/04/2024 at 15:03:41

The new Tottenham Stadium is superb. Probably the best in the world at the moment.

I didn't find them too bad, but last visit, I was in the Everton end. Marred by a depressing 5-0 trouncing!!

Arsenal is a Wembley replica without the arch and their supporters are boring. The away section is a proper sun trap as we always seem to play them late in the season.

Wolves is interesting. Having relatives in the West Midlands, I never realised how odd their supporters were!

You also have to experience Leeds. Now they are a special bunch!!

Jim Wilson
98 Posted 05/04/2024 at 15:14:08
High winds forcast by BBC for first half dying down second half.

Is it too much for the coaching staff to be aware of this should we win the toss?

Once again we are playing a team at the wrong time. Burnley on a run.

With Oliver the ref what's there to worry about?

Andy Crooks
99 Posted 05/04/2024 at 15:46:21
Rob @82,

I think that any top player from most eras would be fine today. They would benefit from modern methods, diet, science and training and the protection from referees.

In my view, once a certain level of technique and skill is reached, mental strength is vital. Our eighties team had it. Also, team spirit and, the often highly fortuitous, right blend of personalities and partnerships is timeless. Leicester found that.

Charles Ward
100 Posted 05/04/2024 at 15:46:38
Robert @87,

Let's see if any of the clubs “linked” to him actually come in with an acceptable bid. He may turn out to be the type of a “water carrier” a top class midfield need but that remains to be seen.

My opinion is that he hasn't shown enough to get a move to a CL club, other than if they got him in a fire sale.

I'd be very surprised if the RS would be interested as they seem to highly rate Bajcetic who is back in training after missing most of the season with growing pains, probably same Osgood-Schlatter Branthwaite suffered with.

Les Callan
101 Posted 05/04/2024 at 16:15:14
Rob @ 95.

Kevin Langley played about 15 or so games that season, several I believe as sub. He wasn't by any means first choice and we had lots of injured players, including I think Reid, Van den Hauwe and Stevens.

He went to Man City mid season, and has the distinction of winning a Championship medal and being relegated in the same season. But I think your comparison with Onana is a good one. Very similar players I believe.

Dave Abrahams
102 Posted 05/04/2024 at 16:33:45
Charles (100), I wondered what happened to that kid, voted MOTM in the Derby game at Anfield only 19 years of age.
Jeff Spiers
103 Posted 05/04/2024 at 17:18:22
Sheffield Wednesday away, Kanchelskis hat-trick. Their supporters gave him a standing ovation.

Villa Park semi-final v Luton. Birmingham Zulus turned up at full-time. Suffice to say they got sent packing by EFC. Coppers were real bastards that day.

Mike Gaynes
104 Posted 05/04/2024 at 17:19:33
Robert #87, well summarized.

I would compare him to Stones, whose exceptional skills had only a moderate impact on the pitch for Everton (no comparison to Branthwaite) yet eventually fit perfectly into the best side in the world.

Christy Ring
105 Posted 05/04/2024 at 17:21:50
I think Ramadan is affecting Gueye, Onana and Doucoure, looking at their energy levels, and I'd swap Gueye for Onana at half-time. I'd definitely start Garner, Gomes, Calvert-Lewin and Seamus at fullback.

We're playing Burnley at home, and our performance against Newcastle, first half shocking, second half a complete transformation, so it speaks for itself, and I won't even mention Harrison.

Danny O’Neill
106 Posted 05/04/2024 at 17:33:31
Jeff, I remember a night when I was staying at my Grandad's on Arkles Lane.

It wasn't an Everton match, it was at Anfield just over the road.

There was all hell kicking off at the back end of the house, in the narrow alleyway as they were chased away by the locals. Nasty bunch Birmingham.

My other half has always labelled them National Front.

James Marshall
107 Posted 05/04/2024 at 17:37:26
I wouldn't and don't think Dyche will start Gomes. He'll play the same starting 11 near as damnit, and attempt to bore us and Burnley into submission at 0-0 for an hour, then bring on Gomes in an attempt to open them up.

Don't expect anything to change in any game between now and the end of the season.

Rob Dolby
108 Posted 05/04/2024 at 17:41:38
Les @101 – touche!

Andy @99 – I agree with you about most of your post.

My doubts are the pace of the modern game which I think would bypass players from the '80s – nevermind earlier.

Would Reid have the same impact in this fast-paced game? As much as I loved him at the time, I think he would really struggle.

Our best ever goalie in Southall, was he as good with his feet as Pickford?

Did Van den Hauwe ever go on an overlap and cross the ball?

Sharp, Sheedy, Steven and Lineker may adapt I think. Heath may have looked even better considering the protection smaller players get these days.

I am not one for nostalgia in general and think the modern game is the best technically and fastest it has ever been.

If ever you catch old footage of The Big Match or Match of the Day, the games look so slow. Close control for all but a few was non-existent.

It was 39 years ago that we went down to Spurs and won. This more or less settled the league title. Both of our goals were taken well, a big boot up the pitch and a mistimed defensive header led to Gray hitting a right footer from the edge of the box to score, sounds almost Dyche like tactics!

Oh and I took a dig from a Spurs fan as I got off the coach and ran for my life into the ground.

Paul Ferry
109 Posted 05/04/2024 at 17:50:00
Dave A (63):

It's not the opinion that I was aiming at, mate (such as it is). I'm on that side of the fence. It was the quite frankly in my view rather pathetic juvenile brainless content that ought to have no place in my opinion on these pages.

I suspect that you might agree with me that "waster shithouse" does not really get us very far mate.

Danny O’Neill
110 Posted 05/04/2024 at 17:52:23

That team mixed it up.

They could go direct; Sharp's derby goal and later when we used Linekers pace and went long.

But then we could go through the middle and use width.

Sharp's and Gray's FA Cup Final winning goals came from the flanks.

Bracewell's unbelievably first time pass on the swivel to Trevor Steven on the right wing to slot home from a difficult angle still has me hitting the rewind button!!

Paul Ferry
111 Posted 05/04/2024 at 18:02:01
Danny mate, those times are long gone, I loved them too.

There is not one of our current players, maybe Branthwaite, who would get anywhere near the 1984-85 first XI. It's sad, but they have neither the talent, intelligence, or physical effort to even clean the boots of the team that won the FA Cup 40 years ago… 40 years, Danny. It's a redundant comparison.

Safe travels tomorrow.

Steven Sturm
112 Posted 05/04/2024 at 18:06:58
Anyone else getting a "not secure" warning when visiting ToffeeWeb lately? What's causing that?
Danny O’Neill
113 Posted 05/04/2024 at 18:07:32
Thanks, Paul.

Branthwaite is going to be special.

Let's enjoy him while we can.

James Marshall
114 Posted 05/04/2024 at 18:13:27
Steven @112,

That usually implies an unencrypted connection to the site, which would imply TW's SSL certificate may have expired.

It's all good for me FYI, but you could always contact the site and let them know.

Danny O’Neill
115 Posted 05/04/2024 at 18:14:46
I saw that this morning ,Steven.

Seemed to fix itself and is okay now.

I tend to find it is browser related.

I use Google Chrome as TW doesn't work too well on Apple's Safari in my experience.

Christy Ring
116 Posted 05/04/2024 at 18:22:23

Still think Bracewell's pass to Steven against Sunderland is tops for me ever, considering today's football is way lighter.

We'll never know how good he could have been thanks to that horrific assault by Whitehurst, cost him his World Cup in Mexico, 2½ years of constant pain and his Everton career.

Jeff Spiers
117 Posted 05/04/2024 at 18:39:38
Christy@106. 2nd paragraph. Truly unbelievable! I am lost for words
Robert Tressell
118 Posted 05/04/2024 at 18:48:39
Sadly I cannot remember the 1980s really (other than the 1988 Euros) so can't really comment on how players from that era would fare in the current Premier League.

But things have certainly moved on and the backpass rule has changed the nature of defending and goalkeeping altogether. I reckon the Leeds side that won the title in 1992 might finish about 12th now, the Man Utd side that won in 1993 might finish about 6th and the Blackburn side that won in 1995 with a very traditional 4-4-2 might finish as low as 8th or 9th.

There were some excellent players in that era but the athleticism, technical ability of goalkeepers and defenders, tactics and (hugely) squad depth of top sides would blow those early to mid-1990s sides away.

Danny O’Neill
119 Posted 05/04/2024 at 18:55:37

Southall in his day was world class and would fit in perfectly today.

Peter Reid, a midfield general who could command the game.

Trevor Steven was special. Gary Stevens with his rocket like shots and goals.

And then I'll leave the best to last.

Kevin Sheedy, who played the game at his own pace.

What a special team.

But tomorrow is about the current bunch. No point being nostalgic.

Rob Halligan
120 Posted 05/04/2024 at 19:38:42
Jeff # 89…

Too many to mention. Outside of Anfield, what a bunch of gobshites they are, the worst fans are probably the deluded Skunk Maggots, who think they are far better than what they are. The best could be a number of any, maybe Brighton, Bournemouth and I also tend to enjoy West Ham fans.

Danny O’Neill
121 Posted 05/04/2024 at 19:43:48
They where terrible on Tuesday, Rob.

On to Goodison tomorrow, Blues.

A short journey for those based in the homeland after long journeys to Bournemouth and Newcastle before a night kick-off at Chelsea.

Phil Smith
122 Posted 05/04/2024 at 19:49:09
This is the first of 4 must-win home games. Win these games and we're safe. Lose any of them and we're fecked. We might be able to draw 1 or 2 if we can win away at Luton or Chelsea or even home against the Shite.

This one is a 100% must-win though. We can't lose any of the games to the 5 teams directly around us. All in our own hands. We go down from here and it's totally on the manager and his refusal to mix it up quick enough.

It seems to take him 4 or 5 games to realise certain players need switching or dropping. Hopefully he lines up with the players who came on against the Barcodes.

Rob Halligan
123 Posted 05/04/2024 at 20:05:21
Talking of long journeys, Danny, who on earth decided that Rotherham v Plymouth was a good idea on a Friday night?

I know everyone has to play everyone else sometime, but jeez, make it a reasonable day and time. Plymouth fans in attendance at Rotherham tonight probably won't get home until around 6am tomorrow morning.

Rob Dolby
124 Posted 05/04/2024 at 20:32:36
Phil @122,

It's not all down to Dyche, where have you been since Carlo walked away?

I agree about not losing to the teams around us but blaming a manager who has had to deal with the amount of shit he has and we are still out of the relegation places is remarkable.

Michael Connelly
125 Posted 05/04/2024 at 20:38:38
I hope Dyche isn't using the words 'must win' to the players, as that'll be the surest way to create anxiety and panic, and reduce the performance level.

They just need to focus on giving 'maximum effort', and the odds should be stacked in our favour for a win. Providing Dyche employs the right tactics, of course, which is another story.

Ben King
127 Posted 05/04/2024 at 20:58:37
The game v Burnley is akin to the home match last season v Leeds when Coleman scored his wonder goal.

That was a must-win and we came through that one.

We also beat Bournemouth at home final day of last season so Dyche has form here. Let's hope he can reignite that vibe again.

Mark Murphy
128 Posted 05/04/2024 at 21:37:24
Rob, I live smack back in the middle of Brighton land and have several (ex-)mates who support Brighton.

They are insufferable pricks who after two decent seasons act like they've conquered Europe and Everton are no longer relevant in their new world. The only shit I got from other fans down here when we got docked points was from Brighton fans.

Brendan McLaughlin
129 Posted 05/04/2024 at 21:47:29
Michael #125

Obviously Dyche has been using "must win" all season...

Nothing wrong with the tactics...

Brian Wilkinson
130 Posted 05/04/2024 at 22:17:14
I will certainly enjoy the game more tomorrow than the last home game when Beto missed his penalty. I sat through it with an abcess on my wisdom tooth. It only kicked off as I got into town, pure agony before the game at the Harlech then non-stop all game. Thankfully gone now and wisdom tooth snatched out.

Is anyone going in the Harlech before the game tomorrow? If so, I will try and get down there before the match and have a catch up. I'm still working on converting Danny to watch the odd rugby league game, you don't know what your missing, Danny.

I managed to stop smoking for the break we had from football but, as soon as Everton played, I was back on a 20 deck.

Anyway, I have a good feeling about tomorrow, I am going to be brave, stick my neck out and go for a 2-nil win, McNeil a long over due goal and Doucoure.

Matt Byrne
131 Posted 05/04/2024 at 22:38:23
Who out there went to the September '85 derby at Goodison?

We were 3-nil down at half time. Dalglish scored in the first minute. We battered them 2nd half and Lineker hit the bar late on which would have made it 3-3. The game was played at a frantic pace with Bobby Robson saying he'd seen the best 2 teams in Europe play. 11 months earlier we had destroyed Man Utd 5-nil with Joe Mercer saying he had seen Brazil play in blue.

Today's football is more technical, but when you see us passing the ball in a dull pedestrian way, I think our players of that era 40 years ago would not only comfortably beat today's team but most other current teams as well.

I think you had to be there and see how good that team was. It's so long ago now, it is difficult for anyone under 45 to really understand that.

Neil Copeland
132 Posted 05/04/2024 at 22:39:26
Brian, ouch! Sorry to hear about your toothache.

I think a few are going to the Harlech tomorrow. I am planning to get there around 12:15 or 12:30-ish to meet up with Jonathan Oppenheimer who is from Minnesota and attending his first game at Goodison.

See you tomorrow.

John Downey
133 Posted 05/04/2024 at 23:11:33
If I recall, Man Utd were top of the league in '85, when we played them and everyone's favourite to win the league, we absolutely destroyed them.

Joe Mercer, who knew everything about football there is know, said it was the most complete team performance he had ever seen. That team in '85 would have given Man City a run for their money.

Finn Taylor
134 Posted 05/04/2024 at 23:18:16
Matt @ 131 - I was at that game, and remember it well. 0 - 3 down at half time - the second half we were ferocious and should not have lost.

Sadly, the only time I have seen us beat them was a couple of months earlier when – and this was the last time we did it (and I wonder if we will ever do it again) we did the double over them. I have never seen us beat them since May 1985, so I never watch derby games anymore.

I remember Bobby Robson purring over the match in the Sunday papers... I seem to recall a newspaper headline saying Mersey Beaucoup!

Brian Wilkinson
135 Posted 05/04/2024 at 23:26:26
Cheers, Neil,

I will be setting off earlier due to no trains running, so will be a bus trip to St Helens, then St Helens to town, then town to the ground, I will pop down the Harlech all being well.

Tony Dunn
136 Posted 05/04/2024 at 23:50:25
That 10 or so days of football in 1985 was such a brilliant time.

Beat Liverpool 1-nil at Anfield, Sharp, when he was a good guy. Bratislava away on the Wednesday, another 1-nil, Bracewell. The 5-nil spanking of the Mancs on the Saturday, then a 2-1 defeat of them at Old Trafford the following Tuesday.

Without going full Danny O’Neill, it was a pleasure to be at all 4 of them.

Paul Birmingham
137 Posted 05/04/2024 at 00:08:41
Emotions are positive and high.

In context, tomorrow is a must win game; it will be significant but Snide Arse & Co will no doubt be waging their last cards (Masters and his cronies).

The Premier League has no bona fide governance and is negligent and has no code of structure. Statute to corruption, but Everton has been sunk by the biggest conman and his associates since Al Capone.

Everton, getting done effectively on base line of the Premier League's rigged rules, and City doing 15 years, free of charge?

Now they're gonna change the charge rules. City get what "whacked" £200M - CGTax. In year 16, 17 since the original charges being raised. That's a total false set of governance of the game.

Back to Burnley, beat them and no.mercy, until the end of the season. Everton need a 6 point cushion, just in case...
Masters and his crooks pull another fast one.

Bad away days... Boro, the real Barbarians, but in 1988, over 6 weeks, it was ground hog day every week.

But they're still the same. Chelsea, Skunks, and South London... But most important is today, all sticking together. Everton will win and hopefully soon we will get an Everton day!

We all have a National Holiday to celebrate Everton FC surviving the biggest football fraud sketch to finish a football club in the history of the game.

I really think the Masters sketch by name and demeanour is hell bent to by stealth kill EFC.

Guilty as charged, but what about Man City... Chelsea... Bournemouth... the rest?

Paul Birmingham
138 Posted 06/04/2024 at 00:44:57
Mentality and professionalism and doing the right things on and off the park,consistently served Everton very well between 1983 and 1988.

Once upon a time in Everton, we had a engine of admin, Jim Greenwood, who ran the club.

Remembering, but it's no excuse for the last 50 years, bar 5 years in the early to mid '80s.

Those were the days, and today will be special.

Jonathan Tasker
139 Posted 06/04/2024 at 02:25:12
Please can we never mention Dele Alli again. He's not played a match for 2 years.

The transfer was a fiasco and it's very unlikely he'll ever play again for any team.

Si Cooper
140 Posted 06/04/2024 at 06:04:37
Where are their heads at? A big uplift snatching a point against the fancied Barcodes but it's a helluva winless streak and there is no sign the goals ‘constipation' is actually going to improve.
I imagine the Burnley players are much more chilled about their current position and will come out swinging.

Weather an early storm and get the opener and we've surely got enough about us to get the 3 points. Hopefully there's no real storm increasing the jeopardy! Don't expect a great deal but it's still UTFT!

Danny O’Neill
141 Posted 06/04/2024 at 06:43:34
It's match day.

All we can do is focus on the match.

The rest can wait.

Let's get the result. Then we can debate other things, but today is about the team on the pitch, whoever they are and the supporters, wherever they are watching from.

Darryl Ritchie
142 Posted 06/04/2024 at 06:52:17
We must win our latest “must win” game.

I almost forget what a Toffee win feels like.

A win would be nice, wouldn't it?!!

Sam Hoare
143 Posted 06/04/2024 at 07:37:39
I find the continuing discourse on Onana somewhat perplexing. Whatever you think of him, surely you can't think that he's the problem in this team?

As Robert T clarifies, he's a defensive midfielder who is constantly winning battles in the air and on the ground, he's hard to get past and seldom gives the ball away. He's very effective at his limited job so let's not get on the back of a talented 22-year-old because he's not Patrick Viera or Kevin De Bruyne. He's not that type of player.

The people who have not been doing their job well lately include Calvert-Lewin, Godfrey, McNeil, Doucoure, Harrison and Beto. Creating and scoring chances has been at a premium but, with games coming fast now against ‘weaker' teams, it will not be enough to just hang in there and scrape a set piece. We will have more possession in some of these games and Dyche must have a better plan for what to do with that.

The replacement options are very slim indeed. Danjuma is one who I'd like to see back as he can make things happen. I'd also be tempted to give Patterson another shot at right-back as at least he offers some dynamism on the ball.

Gomes is not a 90-minute player for me but has some value coming on against tired legs in an attacking role. Dobbin is limited from what I've seen and another who is probably better as a sub.

This is an underpowered squad and our best bet is probably to get our noses ahead and then stay tight. Maybe Calvert-Lewin's penalty might spark a return to form cause we really need someone to find the net with the half chances we seem to create.

Iain Crawford
144 Posted 06/04/2024 at 07:59:29
It’s going to be a tough attritional battle today. The onus is on us to break down Burnley and take our chances. We’re struggling in both of those departments, hence the 13 game winless run. Still, we’ve beaten Burnley twice and should be confident. Don’t give them a second on the ball from the off.

Dyche wont change it much, I think we will see a familiar line up with Harrison back on the right and he will be told to attack more freely. Doucoure will continue in the advanced midfield position.

The other two midfielders likely to be Garner and Onana. Gana used as a sub along with Gomes and Young to shut the game down ….When we’re 2-0 up with 20mins to go ( in theory haha). Danjuma second half on from the bench too, to offer some pace and the threat of a killer goal.

My take on it is we will get more chances than Burnley to win the game, maybe double, so it’s down to us to be ruthless. If so we’ll win.


Colin Glassar
145 Posted 06/04/2024 at 08:19:44
If we don’t win today and get more points deducted next week we might as well call it a day and pack it in.

We need as many as points as possible to cushion the inevitable punishment Masters and co have ready for us. 40 points min so they can steal another four points off us.

Tony Abrahams
146 Posted 06/04/2024 at 08:35:43
When a team is playing with confidence then most people go into the ground in a positive frame of mind, but when a team that is not playing well need to win a game, then it leaves me feeling a lot more anxious.

The players really need the supporters today, and my fear is that a bad result will destroy whatever confidence is left in both the fans, and a squad, that have been put in this terrible position by the people in charge of running the EPL.

Today is simply a must win game; I don’t mind if Burnley hit the woodwork five times and get three goals ruled out by VAR, just as long as EVERTON WIN TODAY.

Kevin Edward
147 Posted 06/04/2024 at 08:45:58
Somehow we need to grind out a win today, thinking about what’s coming next week from the kangaroo commission.
Perfect scenario is a brace for DCL following up the pen on Tuesday.
Burnley are going to be up for it, but if we can score first then 1:0 will do.
I have a fear that Burnley will score first and it will be horrible, that’s about where we are at the moment. A horrible game, we will have chances to win, but are this bunch capable of stepping up? After Tuesday it has to be yes. UTFT!
Charles Ward
148 Posted 06/04/2024 at 09:00:59
Burnley have just had some decent results, drawing with Wolves and away at Chelsea.

Good solid points but they really need the win today to have any hope of staying up so I think they'll go for it. They have some fast, tricky players like Odobert but I think if we score first they'll find us difficult to break down.

The danger will come from them catching us on the break.

Danny O’Neill
149 Posted 06/04/2024 at 09:34:04
I'll go with yours, Tony.

I don't care how we do it.

Just win Everton.

Dave Abrahams
150 Posted 06/04/2024 at 09:36:28
Charles (148),

Your last line is the obvious danger today and in every game they've played for the last couple of years. Everton never cater for the breakaways or try to protect the defence from them.

Every time we get a corner or a free kick I'm thinking ahead to the opposition coming out of defence quickly and with a few attackers ready to pounce on the lack of cover for our defence.

Teams have done their homework and are ready to attack this way every game. I'd leave Branthwaite back as one of the defenders for his speed even though he's handy as an attacker in those situations.

Christopher Timmins
151 Posted 06/04/2024 at 09:44:51
We have to end the winless run today, it just can't continue.

Momentum is everything, let's build on the Newcastle result.

Rob Halligan
152 Posted 06/04/2024 at 09:46:46
I have seen us win ONE, yes ONE home league game all season. To be fair there has only been three, but I missed two through choice, Skunks and Chelsea in December when I was in the Caribbean for the cricket.

That solitary home win I saw was Bournemouth on Saturday 7 October — six months ago! Time to put the record straight, I think. ☹️☹️

Andrew Clare
153 Posted 06/04/2024 at 10:02:33
If things aren't going right in this game after 60 minutes, I would look to bring on three attacking subs – say Danjuma, Gomes and Dobbin or Beto.

We have to win. It not as if we haven't got the quality, we just need to play to the players' strengths. Come on Everton!

Brian Wilkinson
154 Posted 06/04/2024 at 10:06:54
Yes, that was my birthday treat tha Rob, 7 October.

Any other ToffeeWebbers got a birthday coming up on matchday, just looking for anything to help our cause.

Have a good feeling for today, 3 points I reckon.

Mike Doyle
155 Posted 06/04/2024 at 10:11:10
Burnley have achieved 3 draws and a win from their last 4 games. Their current form (last 6 games) is the best of the 6 relegation candidates.

So today will be tough – and probably very close. Patience is needed by crowd and players alike.

Martin Farrington
156 Posted 06/04/2024 at 10:30:04
Ok. It really all comes down to two things.
Stubborn Dyche's first team favourites.
We all know who will start. We know that he will set up not to lose.
The positive is we create chances. We just cant turn them into goals.
This team are bottlers. They will fail to live up to our hopes. The usual ones will fail to perform again and I fear Burnley will seize upon that.
I reckon it will turn on substitutions.
But my fear is that at home we will gift soft goals as we always do.

A narrow victory is within our grasp.

Brian Harrison
157 Posted 06/04/2024 at 10:48:40
With a further points deduction coming next week, this game is massive and, as Mike at post 155 said, Burnley are in the best run of form of all the relegation candidates.

As much as I know the fans will back the team as they always do, there is bound to be a lot of nervousness amongst the fans as well. When you go 13 games without a win, it just creates massive uncertainty amongst fans and players.

Despite not winning for 13 games, we have a much better squad than Burnley and we have to make that quality count. We have to start on the front foot.

Kompany wants his team to play out from the back which is admirable but sometimes asking players who haven't got the skill set to carry out these instructions can provide an opening for us. Who would have thought when we beat Burnley in December we wouldn't see another win before playing them again in early April?

Michael Oliver has never done us any favours and he has the whistle today, so let's make sure we don't give him the opportunity to influence the result. He was on VAR against Bournemouth and decided not to ask the ref to have a look at the monitor over Calvert-Lewin's penalty appeal.

So come on, Evertonm give us a victory today.

Raymond Fox
158 Posted 06/04/2024 at 10:49:07
There's only the top 3 teams in the league conceeded less goals than us but we have also scored less goals than everyone else. 1-0 to us hopefully.

Two of the main differences between the game now and 50 years ago are the state of the pitches in them days and every goalie then kicked the ball as far upfield as he could.

Pity the centre halves then with the old heavy ball.

Jerome Shields
159 Posted 06/04/2024 at 10:51:02
Burnley have been getting results in their last four games and have been scoring goals. Dyche will need to have players selected and tactics to break them down, whilst maintaining a focused and disciplined defence. This is a difficult game.
Mike Lawson
160 Posted 06/04/2024 at 11:02:35
All packed to start the pilgrimage to Goodison Park from Wolverhampton. Hope the M6 is kind.

Parking at the garage opposite Stanley Park, walk to the Fanzone, bite to eat, quick beer, ready to go into Bullens Road Upper, anticipation of a great performance(please), hairs on the back of the neck as Z-Cars plays.
We need 3 points UTFT!!!

Dave Abrahams
161 Posted 06/04/2024 at 11:10:56
I am going today to try and help cheer Everton to a vital victory.What's gone before or what will happen in the future has no bearing on today's game.

Whatever team is selected, whether I like it or not, I will be behind them and biting my lip at the silly fouls and terrible passing and all the other faults we make every game.

Today is about today and getting them home for those vital points and backing these players throughout the game no matter how they perform.

Raymond Fox
162 Posted 06/04/2024 at 11:15:04
Correction to my post 158.

Sheffield Utd have scored 3 fewer goals than us.

Mike Lawson
163 Posted 06/04/2024 at 11:19:43
Dave 161 - couldn't have put it better myself!
Brian Harrison
164 Posted 06/04/2024 at 11:20:27
I don't know if anyone has mentioned that a local artist has made a banner that commemorates the Hillsborough tragedy, showing both Blues and Reds with the arms around one another and it will be unfurled in Gwladys Street before the game.

There may be many things badly wrong with Everton Football Club at present, but this shows the class of our fanbase. With Phil Thompson and Wes Brown having to appeal to their fans to stop chanting about tragedies, maybe this will be the perfect response to help their appeal.

Again a brilliant gesture from our amazing fans.

Lee Courtliff
165 Posted 06/04/2024 at 11:38:24
I was told last night that if we stay up, Josh Brownhill is joining us in the summer from Burnley.

My mate went to watch Brownhill's brother play for Padiham last week, and was told by one of the fans who claims to be 'in the know'.

Inspiring signing!

Robert Tressell
166 Posted 06/04/2024 at 11:56:14
Lee, I think Brownhill is a very likely signing so what you have heard may well be true.

Not very inspiring, I agree, but he's a decent footballer (better than both Gueye and Doucoure on the ball) and will be available for free. Getting him will mean we can spend more of our very limited kitty on other players.

Laurie Hartley
167 Posted 06/04/2024 at 12:07:43
Dave # 161 - never truer words posted on here.
Time to fight.
Up the Blues!!!
Brian Wilkinson
168 Posted 06/04/2024 at 12:12:52
Brian @164, that's the difference, we have class and display a Hilsborough memorial banner why they choose to display a Steua Bucharest flag in the kop.

Ssame city… miles apart on class.

Tom Bowers
169 Posted 06/04/2024 at 12:27:13
No doubt about it, this is the start of a serious run of games that will determine our fate. If we cannot pick up some wins against this bunch, then heaven help us.

Okay, forget Liverpool, Chelsse and The Gunners for now, the bottom feeders (like Everton) know what is expected in order to survive. Any other points deduction would be a near disaster if we cannot get some wins soon.

Palace are being dragged in and a loss today against City will get them involved in the mix. We have to score to win and preferably first to ease the nerves.

Bill Hawker
170 Posted 06/04/2024 at 12:36:29
Would prefer Gomes over Garner for this one but overall, okay with the predicted line-up.
Kunal Desai
171 Posted 06/04/2024 at 12:37:12
Don't think a draw is good enough here. It's a must-win particularly with another points deduction on Monday.
Charles Ward
172 Posted 06/04/2024 at 12:46:31
Hopefully start with eleven that finished the game at Newcastle.

Add Your Comments

In order to post a comment, you need to be logged in as a registered user of the site.

» Log in now

Or Sign up as a ToffeeWeb Member — it's free, takes just a few minutes and will allow you to post your comments on articles and Talking Points submissions across the site.

How to get rid of these ads and support TW

© ToffeeWeb