Despite playing well for an hour, Everton threw away a two-goal lead at Newcastle as the Toon went home with all three points.
But what do the numbers tell us about the performance?
Pickford’s Remarkable Penalty Record
Keeper has saved 46% of the penalties he’s faced for Everton
Jordan Pickford had a very mixed afternoon, bouncing between the woeful and the sublime, but unfortunately mostly the former. He was lucky to get away without a red card after bundling into Salomon Rondon when giving away a penalty, before the Newcastle striker should have pulled a goal back in the second half with the Sunderland-born keeper caught in no man’s land, while his poor handling from Miguel Almiron’s fierce strike allowed Newcastle an equaliser.
One of the highlights of Pickford’s performance, though, was his penalty save. It also means his incredible penalty saving form continues for Everton, with Pickford saving six of the 13 penalties he’s faced for the Blues.
Calvert-Lewin = Everton’s Number 9?
Eighth goal of the season for DCL
Dominic Calvert-Lewin is looking more and more like a Premier League striker every week. He leads the line well, is great in the air and his hold-up play is improving. There are still big questions about his finishing in one-on-one situations, but the 21-year-old is getting there and is seems to safe say that he is now Everton’s first choice striker after bagging his eighth goal of the season with yet another well-placed header.
Everton will surely be in the market for a new striker in the summer, but Dominic Calvert-Lewin like has eight games to show that he can be the man to lead Everton’s line for years to come.
Conservative Silva Punished
Everton’s switch to back three fails dramatically
With Everton seemingly playing well until Newcastle’s first goal, Marco Silva understandably held off on making any changes to the Blues.
But when Rondon grabbed Newcastle’s first, Silva looked to shore things up at the back by bringing on Yerry Mina for Richarlison and switching to a back three on 74 minutes. Eight minutes later, Everton were losing 3-2.
The reactive rather than proactive nature of Silva’s substitutions may cause some discussion, but it’s also much easier to look at with clarity retrospectively.
Comebacks a Rarity Under Silva
Silva loses from leading position for just second time
While Evertonians may still be scarred from Roberto Martinez’s days of playing well for 60 minutes before throwing away two-goal leads, we shouldn’t forget that this is only the second lead that Marco Silva has gone on to lose in the league at Everton (the other being the 6-2 drubbing at home to Spurs).
This wasn’t a disastrous performance overall. It was a disastrous 30 minutes. Lessons need to be learned, but there’s no need to man the panic stations just yet.
Just 15 points from 17 games
There’s no doubt about it. Despite an improvement this week – especially up until the hour mark against Newcastle – the Blues have been woeful for a long period now and have picked up a measly 15 points from our last 17 games. That form can see you relegated.
I still think Marco Silva is the right man for the job, but he likely needs to prove that to the board with some wins over the final stage of the season, before they sanction a significant transfer budget in the summer.