What happened in the middle of the week was a debacle and Everton shouldn’t be happy with it. That said, it was the EFL Cup, so is it THAT big of a deal? Looking on the bright side, it gives the boys a few more days of rest this year as they pursue the most important competition, the Premier League, where they have been fantastic early on.
The opposition today, Bournemouth, were also bounced from the EFL Cup a couple of days ago. It’s just the latest result it what has been a tough start to the season for Eddie Howe’s club.
Through the campaign’s first month or so, the Cherries find themselves with just four points (a win against West Bromwich Albion and a draw with Crystal Palace) in the league. But they have also had a difficult schedule to open things up, having already played both Manchester clubs and traveled to West Ham. Today, they host high-flying, second-in-the-league Everton.
These sides contested two hard-fought battles a season ago. Everton won their home leg 2-1 in April. But it was the game at Dean Court in November that will stick in most people’s memories. The Blues blew a 2-0 lead in the final 10 minutes of regular time as goals from Adam Smith and Junior Stanislas tied it at two apiece. From there, madness! Everton went ahead on what seemed to be a last-second, Ross Barkley goal and certainly had it won. But the hosts came roaring back, scoring on the final kick of the game in the EIGHTH minute of stoppage time. Wow, it was exhausting. I would happily take an nice, smooth 2-0 win today, boys.
Date and start time: Saturday, September 24 at 10 a.m. EST/7 a.m. WST/3 p.m. BST
Stadium: The Vitality Stadium, Bournemouth, England
Weather: 70°F/21°C, partly cloudy, 50% chance of rain, 24 km/h winds
How to Watch/Listen
TV: none listed
Radio: EvertonFC.com Match Centre
Live stream: NBC Sports Live Extra
Starting XI - Boruc, A.Smith, Francis, Cook, Daniels, Ibe, Arter, Surman, Wilshere, Stanislas, Wilson.
Bench - Federici, Ake, B.Smith, Gosling, Gradel, Mousset, Afobe.
Starting XI - Stekelenburg, Oviedo, Jagielka (c), Williams, Coleman, Gueye, Barry, Bolasie, Barkley, Mirallas, Lukaku.
Bench - Joel, Deulofeu, Lennon, Cleverley, Valencia, Funes Mori, Holgate.