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Everton at Fulham: Projected XI – Richarlison Returns

The Blues are at near full-strength, but who will Carlo give the nod to in goal, defence and midfield?

Everton v West ham United - Carabao Cup Fourth Round Photo by Tony McArdle/Everton FC via Getty Images

After a much-needed international break on the back of three consecutive losses, Everton… are back.

The question is: which Everton will be returning?

The September table toppers or the all-too-familiar pedestrian passers of recent weeks?

But, the good news is the Mighty Blues of Everton are at near full-strength.

Who’s Out

The best news is, of course, that Richarlison is back after serving an unnecessary three-match suspension, despite the best efforts of Edison Cavani in midweek who received a (admittedly harsh) straight red card after catching the Brazilian on the ankle during the international break. But, luckily, Richie is fit to play.

The only other absentee for Everton is Jean-Philippe Gbamin, who, finally, is nearing a return (can you return if you were never really there?) after an injury-plagued 15 months. He may be ready to play in the run up to Christmas, though.

Other than that, the Blues have everyone available.

Tactics and Formation

It’ll surely be a 4-3-3, but there’s a lot of competition for places, with only really the front three, Allan and Lucas Digne assured of a start.

Starters (likelihood of starting rated out of 10)

Jordan Pickford – 7/10

No longer a guaranteed starter after Carlo Ancelotti admitted he may look to rotate England’s number one with Robin Olsen. Anyone’s guess for who’ll start here though.

Jonjoe Kenny – 7/10

Likely to get the nod with Seamus Coleman out, despite having not particularly impressed in a Blue shirt this season. Also a chance we could see Mason Holgate the right-back slot with no shortage of centre-backs available.

Lucas Digne – 10/10

Michael Keane – 9/10

Mason Holgate - 7/10

Will likely start, but could also be at right back, in which case Yerry Mina or even Ben Godfrey could line-up alongside big Mick Keane.

Allan – 10/10

Abdoulaye Doucoure – 9/10

Bernard – 6/10

No one has yet to really lay claim to the left central midfield position yet, but I’m thinking Bernard may be moved there after impressing against United but surely having to surrender his left-wing position to Richarlison.

Gomes started the season as the preferred choice, although Gylfi Sigurdsson and Fabian Delph have also lined up there. That said, I also wouldn’t be surprised to see Tom Davies get a rare opportunity in order to add some hustle and bustle to the midfield.

James Rodriguez – 10/10

Thankfully returns from a testing testicle injury.

Richarlison– 9/10

Dominic Calvert-Lewin – 10/10

Bench

Robin Olsen

Yerry Mina

Ben Godfrey

Gylfi Sigurdsson

Alex Iwobi

Andre Gomes

Cenk Tosun