Holding on for as long as possible
Credit where it’s due, Everton kept this match competitive for far longer than most could have guessed. After dodging an early bullet in the form of Ilkay Gundogan hitting the bar and allowing a Gabriel Jesus goal, Everton had this match tied up at the half.
Despite the endless onslaught that is the Manchester City attack, Everton held their own. A number of near misses kept Everton in the match until the walls finally came crashing in. It was essentially a foregone conclusion that City would win this match, and they eventually took advantage of a gassed Everton side and finished off the game.
Another week without points is always bad, but there was a spark in this Everton team. They played hard and did their best to take the game to City. Unfortunately they were the lesser team in this match, but they kept it close for as long as they could.
One big critique from this match was the dreadful job Everton did of clearing the ball out of their end. We saw what a bad clearance could look like for Man City as it lead to Everton’s only goal, it was somewhat shocking to not see Everton give up a goal in a similar fashion.
On several occasions a poor clearance by a defender or midfielder meant the ball found it’s way back to a City attacker in a dangerous area. When playing a team that lives off possession like Man City does, this is a scary proposition. Everton did find other ways to give up goals, but this is one other way they can look to improve, in the turnover department.
Positive performances in loss
Even in a loss there were some solid performances in this match. Seamus Coleman stands out as one such example. While he may have been lacking defensively, especially later in the match, he was outstanding in attack. His effort to get Everton their lone goal may have been the stand out play. But Coleman was fantastic throughout the match in getting his teammates scoring opportunities.
Fabian Delph and Richarlison were also excellent. Delph added a bit of attacking flair that has been missing in Andre Gomes absence, and going up against his former side he showed a lot of responsibility in the middle yesterday, covering relentlessly whenever a fullback was out of position.
Richarlison impressed with his work rate on the wings, supporting the fullback behind him. Despite his lack of production on the score sheet, Richarlison’s effort could not be faulted. He hustled this entire match and nearly made a couple of big plays during the game.