Everton will play two lower league sides in the buildup to the 2018-19 Premier League season, the club announced today.
First up is League Two Bury away at Gigg Lane on Wednesday July 18th. Bury were relegated from League One last season, and will be looking to come right back up next season.
The Blues last played against the Shakers in a preseason game July 2011 with Everton winning 4-1 after a brace from Magaye Gueye as well as goals from Aiyegbeni Yakubu and Leon Osman.
There haven’t been too many competitive games between the two, the last time being a two-legged League Cup second-round fixture in 1988, with the Blues winning 5-2 on aggregate.
The other game announced was away against Blackburn Rovers, who have been promoted to the Championship, having finished runners-up in League One last season.
The Toffees are at Ewood Park on Thursday July 26th, their first visit there since a preseason clash in July 2013 that the Blues won 3-1 with goals from Kevin Mirallas and a brace by Nikica Jelavic. Competitively, they last played to a 1-1 draw at Goodison Park in January 2012, with Tim Cahill scoring.
The only visitors to Goodison announced so far are Spanish side Valencia, on Saturday August 4th a week before the Premier League season kicks off with a trip to Championship-winners Wolverhampton Wanderers.
A game against SportPesa Cup champions Gor Mahia at Goodison Park is on the cards too, with no date announced as yet. The Toffees beat the Kenyan side 2-1 in Tanzania last summer.
Here is what the summer schedule is looking like now -
- 17th May, 2018 - Summer transfer window opens
- 8th June, 2018 - FIFA transfer window opens
- 14th June, 2018 - World Cup 2018 begins
- 2nd July, 2018 - Everton training camp opens
- 15th July, 2018 - World Cup 2018 ends
- 18th July, 2018 - Everton at Bury FC (Preseason friendly)
- 26th July, 2018 - Everton at Blackburn Rovers FC (Preseason friendly)
- 4th August, 2018 - Everton vs Valencia (Preseason friendly)
- 9th August, 2018 - Summer transfer window closes
- 10th August, 2018 - Everton at Wolverhampton Wanderers (2018-19 Premier League)