Player: Kevin Mirallas #11
Games Played: 36; Games Started: 24; Goals: 11; Assists: 3; Shots: 71; Shots on Goal: 26; Fouls Committed: 19; Fouls Suffered: 31; Yellow Cards: 6; Red Card: 0
Kevin Mirallas and Belgium had a pretty anonymous World Cup in Brazil last summer, even despite reaching the quarter-finals. Reaching that far meant that Mirallas and his colleague Romelu Lukaku returned to the squad after the pre-season friendlies. Both still needing fitness, the club had to organise a behind-closed-doors friendly.
The lack of fitness didn’t really seem to affect Mirallas however, because by the end of November he had 5 goals from 10 appearances. The winger ended the season as Everton’s second top goal-scorer in all competitions, but because of comments off the pitch, that has been extremely overshadowed.
What He Did Well
Since his arrival, Mirallas has given the side pace and has been an outlet to give the ball to when under pressure from the opposition. That was the case for most of the games this season.
The 27-year-old had his best season for goals in the 2014/15 campaign and his goals at times proved vital. Mirallas improving his goal-scoring is a good element for the Blues going into next season because the team are not blessed with a lot of players who have an eye for goal.
Any other season Mirallas would have won our goal of the season with his strike at Tottenham but that competition had been sown up the moment that ball left Phil Jagielka’s boot at Anfield in the final minute.
What provided a useful tool for Everton’s attacking was sliding Mirallas through on goal as he made runs coming inside from the left. Whether it was Samuel Eto’o against Wolfsburg, Darron Gibson against BSC Young Boys or Ross Barkley against Manchester United, the pacey wide player making a run inside provided him with a lot of goal-scoring opportunities.
What He Could Have Done Better
Mirallas was one of David Moyes’ last bargain signings for a meagre £6m and since then in his three seasons, the shortcoming thrown at the Belgian has been consistency.
I would have to use that again for this season, there are times when Mirallas goes through a purple patch and has looked like Cristiano Ronaldo but then there are times when you forget that he is on the field. Perhaps we are not using him to the fullest when in possession but there are games when he must be more involved. However I would argue against the suggestion to play him more centrally because that removes the situation of isolating him with the opposition full-back and it removes Mirallas cutting in from the left to shoot when he has the ball or cutting in with a run for someone to play him in on-goal.
Another negative from Mirallas this season has been comments that have been published, usually while he is on international duty. This is something we are used to from when Marouane Fellaini was at the club but it doesn’t make it less frustrating.
At first we were hearing that Mirallas craves Champions League football and although he’d like that with Everton, he’d look elsewhere if the Blues couldn’t qualify. More recently however he has said he never said he wanted to leave Everton and that there is too much talking about his future. But then two weeks later, Mirallas talked of broken promises and an awkward relationship with manager, Roberto Martinez; leaving everybody confused as to whether we will see him in a Blue shirt or not next season.
We have been using the grading system A+ to F for our player reviews; C for players who performed okay this season, A+ for those few who had an exceptional season, and F for those who had an appallingly season. How would you rate Kevin’s contribution this season?
Once you have voted, why not have your say in the comments section below?