Post by Matthew Barry on Sept 19, 2020 15:44:49 GMT
West Brom (h) Afternoon Delight.
Unchanged from the Spurs game, had to be really, would have been harsh to leave anyone out. Although the bench was quite interesting with no Gordon & Walcott.
The assured start of last week was missing & the team for a short period did look like strangers. But credit where it’s due, West Brom came to play & deservedly took the lead. Mina & Pickford worried the life out of me for 55 minutes of this game, & Ancelotti in his interview hi-lighted the need for immediate improvement. Mina should never have given Diangana a 20 yard run at goal & Pickford should have done immeasurably better other than watch the ball go passed him, although he’d repeat this trick a bit later.
West Brom continued to press Everton & it just seemed hard work to get the passing & moving that was so prevalent vs Spurs, James very quiet, Doucoure booked early. But like last week when Richarlison missed the chance when clean through, there was no panic.
The equaliser came from a fantastic cross that Richarlison missed but the ball ricocheted off the defenders head & into the lap of DCL who back healed it in. The flag went up immediately, but the linesman had a clear view along the line & how he didn’t see it came off a defender is worrying, but VAR gave the correct outcome. A poachers instinct after missing a very straightforward headed chance before WBA scored the opener. 1-1 relief!!
On the balance of play WBA were still the better team & the threat of the counter attack, especially down the right was forcing Doucoure to double up with Coleman, leaving James isolated. But! class is exactly that, class & James gave us the lead with a shot from just outside of the area, squeezed into the bottom corner. It wasn’t smashed, it was placed, with time & accuracy. 2 empty seats in the main-stand were being spared an absolute battering!!! Bitter sweet!! Keiran Gibbs dared to lay hands on the immaculate face off James & quite rightly got sent off 2-1 bang on HT. Following a row with Kopite Dean, the B-Tec Klopp got his marching orders too. I’ve always had a massive dislike for Bilic, he fleeced our club, horrible man.
Second half started like the first. We’d gotten out of jail once, but Gomes gave away a stupid foul fully 30 yards out & Mina didn’t jump & Pickford didn’t attempt to make a save. 2-2, utterly avoidable & the glare of an unhappy Ancelotti cast firmly on his defender & goal keeper. Again to credit West Brom, they came out fighting.
I mentioned in the week that I thought Michael Keane was taking responsibility for this group of players, the new signings will have all the attention, but 2 goals in 2 games & assured performances is making Keane the obvious partner for Holgate when he comes back. The in swinging free-kick flicked on falling for Keane on the rebound & Everton had the lead again. Surely against 10 men this wouldn’t go wrong from here?
The swagger from last Sunday had suddenly returned & Allan was now running the game, box to box fetching & carrying, but also recovering lose balls to feed James who’d consistently find Digne who’d consistently get the goal into the area. Surely more goals would follow. Momentum + Confidence is a very great formula this early on in a season.
Richarlison who’d worked hard last week & today was released on the left and his shot across the keeper was more than likely drifting wide, DCL had gambled & followed the shot, he turned it in just as it was about a yard off the line & it was 4-2. Everton for the first time in the game deservedly leading but the butterflies never leave your stomach & your eyes always get drawn to the clock in the corner of your screen.
With West Brom now clearly tiring, the passing of James, Gomes & substitute Sigurdsson was starting to really take it’s toll. Digne & Coleman now playing as wingers with Keane & Mina camped on the halfway line with Allan shielding. A corner from James was met by DCL for his hattrick. The youngest english Everton player to score 3 goals in a Premier League game. 4 goals in 2 games. Momentum + Confidence!!
The usual flurry of substitutions followed with DCL being replaced & robbed of a standing ovation, James unable to see how much he’s already captured the imagination of us all, & us not being see this special talent. Richarlison going upfront & arguably scoring the goal of the game, but he was slightly offside & Dean couldn’t wait to rule it out. FT 5-2
So what’s the difference this season? It’s all down to the manager. Plain & simple. Levels have been raised, Gomes & Sigurdsson look different players because the manager has what he wants. It’s not all sunshine & rainbows as we all know, questions still remain about our hot & cold goalkeeper & a half-fit Mina. However!!! It’s 3 games & 3 wins & we move onto Wednesday.