While it may seem that Everton’s last Premier League game of the 2018-19 season is going to be played for pride only with the Blues out of contention for seventh and a possible Europa League spot, there is going to be a bigger motivating factor in play - £££.
The Blues travel down to London to take on Tottenham Hotspur, and the memories of the absolute hiding they handed out to us at Goodison Park earlier this season will certainly still be fresh in the minds of the fans and players alike. Without Idrissa Gueye patrolling the midfield, Marco Silva’s gameplan of taking the game to Spurs backfired spectacularly as they ran the Toffees ragged and ran out 6-2 winners in a game that the hosts had actually scored first in.
However, much has changed since then with Harry Kane, Harry Winks and Serge Aurier all lost to injury, Heung-Min Son and Juan Foyth out suspended and Spurs having a bigger battle to deal with right now with a 1-0 deficit to take to Ajax Amsterdam in the Champions League semifinal return leg on Wednesday.
Spurs could mathematically but not feasibly drop to fifth in the table and out of the Champions League qualifying spots, but it would take a 8-goal swing in goal difference to do it - for example, they would have to lose to Everton by four goals and Arsenal would have to beat Burnley away by four goals, or some unlikely similar combination of eight goals to do it.
Each spot up the table a club goes earns an additional £1.9 million, and that doesn’t include the television rights money that each club will make - expected to be an equal share of domestic and international television income ahead of a new deal next season - £34.8m and £40.8m respectively from last season - as well as an equal £4.8m from other commercial ventures.
Additionally there will be a share of money from the number of times each club has been broadcast live on television by Sky Sports or BT Sport, which for Everton is at 18 for this season.
For the Blues though, a defeat in London combined with a win for Leicester City will see Everton drop to ninth. It would take a twelve-goal swing for tenth-placed Watford FC to jump up above the Blues. The money at stake though is nothing to turn up your nose at.
Even sliding below the Foxes, who take on Chelsea at home, could mean nearly a £2 million difference. As things stand, finishing eighth will net Everton £25,106,484, which sounds like the sum it’ll take to make the Andre Gomes loan deal from Barcelona permanent. The worst case would see Everton in tenth making £21,243,948.
It may not seem like a big difference to the Toffees’ coffers, but that £2-4 million difference is significant when the Blues are desperately trying to lighten their wage bill by cutting the deadwood off it during the upcoming summer transfer window.