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Projected XI: Everton at Leicester City

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Time to bounce back.

Leicester City v Everton - Premier League Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Everton head to the King Power tomorrow with hat in hand. Please, sir, may I have some points is the question, and Marco Silva needs to find the answer. The Blues may have walloped a poor Fulham team, but the egg laid against Southampton has done more than enough to bring some unrest back into the fold.

Which 11 players might get a result? Let’s chat about it.

Tactics and Formation

Marco Silva rested a number of his big players on Tuesday (for better or worse), so he’ll have all of his big guns available for the match against Leicester.

Tactically speaking, Leicester are among the more predictable teams in the Premier League. They’re content to sit deep and wait for you to make a mistake, then strike on the counter — and they’re damn good at it.

So, we suspect that Silva will utilize a lineup that is most capable of keeping possession of the ball, to limit the Foxes’ chances to counter.

Starters (likelihood of starting rated out of 10)

Jordan Pickford - 10/10

Lucas Digne - 10/10

Leighton Baines rotated into the lineup midweek, but there’s no real doubt that Digne is king at this position.

Kurt Zouma - 10/10

Michael Keane - 8/10

There might be a temptation to play Mason Holgate over Keane, because the youngster’s speed could be a useful tool against the quick Leicester counter. But, Holgate is also easily the slowest at reading the game among Everton center-backs, so we think Keane will get the nod anyway.

Jonjoe Kenny - 10/10

Idrissa Gueye - 10/10

Morgan Schneiderlin - 8/10

Keeping possession is key against Leicester City, as one ill-timed turnover often leads to a counterattack and Jamie Vardy putting the ball in the back of your net. Schneiderlin is a better passer than Davies, so he makes more sense to start this one.

Gylfi Sigurdsson - 10/10

Theo Walcott - 10/10

Richarlison - 10/10

Cenk Tosun - 7/10

The situation up top remains pretty unclear. Cenk started Tuesday and didn’t get on the board, but Dominic Calvert-Lewin is running cold now too, so there’s no clear-cut answer.

We give Tosun the edge here because his control on the ball will be worth more to Everton than DCL’s speed against a Leicester side that usually adopts a pretty deep defensive line.

Bench

Maarten Stekelenburg

Mason Holgate

Leighton Baines

Tom Davies

Ademola Lookman - The prodigal son returned to action once again on Tuesday and looked...engaged and lively? It was a first for this season, and reminded us what the young man is capable of on his day. We think Silva has to get him into the 18 after a good showing, and he’ll take Oumar Niasse’s spot.

Dominic Calvert-Lewin

Bernard


There will likely be some calls for Everton to start the players who did well on Tuesday, specifically Bernard and/or Ademola Lookman. It is the opinion of this projected XI conglomerate that Marco Silva will utilize his most trusted deputies, and attempt to get some cohesion moving forward in the starting lineup.

What do you think?