Fulltime: There’s the whistle, and Everton win 1-0. Nervy and predictable at times, but grew into the game and crucially got the goal when they were in the ascendancy, not something that always happens. Solid win, three points, good stuff.
90+6’ - Nervy here as Norwich are looking for an opening, ball floated into the box and as Pickford comes to gather he is fouled. That will kill more seconds.
90+4’ - Blues win a corner and take their time with it. DCL and Keane rise for it, goes wide.
90’ - Sloppy from Everton and Idah can shoot, deflected for a corner. Kean dawdles on the ball and loses it just outside the box... but Coleman saves his blushes. Then Kean can attack, and wins a freekick in a dangerous spot. Digne to take, curls it over.
There will be 6 more minutes.
89’ - Ancelotti will let more time elapse now, bringing on Anthony Gordon for Alex Iwobi, who has had a decent enough game today.
87’ - More subs, with Cantwell on for the Canaries, and Leighton Baines for Bernard.
84’ - Everton looking happy to sit back and let Norwich have the ball, who now have three in front. Leaving more space for the Toffees forwards. DCL gets the ball centrally but with no support shoots from far, straight at Krul.
82’ - Iwobi is looking full of running today and doing well too holding the ball. Hasn’t quite found his man with his crossing, but better from him.
80’ - Oh Kean. His first touch is a backheel that is intercepted, his second is as he slices Vrancic in half with a sliding challenge. Straight yellow, no questions there.
78’ - Danger here, but team defends well. Pukki finds Buendia on a quick break, he goes around Pickford but too far wide, and the danger is snuffed out.
Subs - Moise Kean is on for Richarlison now. Hernandez off, Idah on for the hosts.
76’ - Everton are just passing the ball out of the back and trying to run down the clock, tire out their hosts by making them chase it. Dangerous strategy, but working so far.
72’ - Digne takes down Max Aarons just outside the box, this is a dangerous spot. Buendia curls it in, looked like Gomes cuts it out for a corner, which is then cleared away.
68’ - Blues are looking dangerous every time they go up the right wing. Now Iwobi whips in a cross and DCL gets his head to it, but not enough contact and it goes wide.
Time for the second drinks break, and Norwich bring on Pukki & Buendia for Rupp & Duda, switching to a 4-4-2 as well.
65’ - Norwich attack, and have a chance to shoot from outside the box, blocked by Sigurdsson for a corner. Duda looked to have fouled Digne in the follow through from his shot but ref is not interested.
60’ - Blues keeping up the pressure, win another corner on the left this time, cleared away.
58’ - Iwobi looking much better today, finds DCL on the right, he stutter-steps then shoots. It’s straight at Krul and he parries it over. The corner is good from Digne, cleared away by Krul.
55’ - The pressure tells! Digne’s inswinging corner from the right is headed in beautifully by Michael Keane, who just deftly nodded it onto the far post and in. 1-0 Everton!
52’ - Everton looking much more coherent with Sigurdsson next to Gomes. Bernard charges down a clearance and fashions a chance to cross for himself, but it’s blocked. Blues have started with much more energy in the second half, Norwich had faded badly against Southampton in the second half.
48’ - Now Norwich win a corner on the Everton right. Cleared away.
46’ - Straightaway into action, Richarlison with a chance to shoot, blocked for a corner. Corner pinged out Sigurdsson outside the box, he connects but it’s blocked. Much better energy from the Blues.
Second Half: Gylfi Sigurdsson is the only change at the break, on for Davies.
45+2’ - Another Davies giveaway, and Rupp has a chance to shoot, Pickford saves well parrying it away. Hernandez then cuts in to shoot, but it’s blocked.
Halftime, much to everyone’s relief.
45’ - Two minutes time added on. My word this is dull.
42’ - Everton give away a couple of freekicks in the middle, with Norwich floating the ball into the box on both. One floats wide, the other is gathered by Jordan Pickford.
40’ - It’s going to take a fresh pair of legs to win this game, question is which side will make the changes first?
38’ - Davies with a long hoof forward, and Krul rushes out to clear a hair before DCL gets there.
34’ - A rare attack as Coleman floats in a cross, headed down by DCL but no Everton players nearby.
31’ - Now Duda weaves his way through the middle and needs a strong tackle from Holgate to stop him, ref blows for a foul from about twenty yards away. Duda takes, banged off the wall.
29’ - The Blues are struggling to hold on to the ball. Norwich attack again and again. Don’t remember seeing Richarlison since the first five minutes.
25’ - Everton’s first shot of the game there. Keane finds DCL with a long aerial, he pulls it down and shoots, but it’s low and slow straight at Krul.
22’ - Everton haven’t strung together a series of passes in about ten minutes. Just in time too as it’s the water break now. It’s a hot day and the Toffees haven’t been looking very frisky either.
18’ - Hernandez with a run down the left and then cuts in, deflected shot bobbles wide off the outside of the post for a corner. Everton clear.
16’ - Norwich defender Klose gives away a foul at the half line, hacking down DCL when he was left for dead.
13’ - Tom Davies runs up a blind alley and loses the ball, leaving Andre Gomes for dead. Norwich can cross into the box but Lucas Digne heads clear.
We do not have the good Tom Davies here today. Fluffed his first touch with a chance to shoot, and then miskicked another shooting chance.
10’ - The first cross into the box is from Bernard, Dominic Calvert-Lewin mistimes his jump and Tim Kruul gathers easily.
7’ - As expected, Everton stroking the ball around comfortably. Not done anything with it yet, mind.
3’ - Norwich looked exhausted in the second half of their game, made four changes. Everton have ten of the eleven that started Sunday, and it’s oppressively hot today. Hmm.
1’ - And we’re off.. to take a knee. Not like Sadio Mane did on Sunday though. Everton are in their salmon away kit, and in the bright sunlight against the Canaries’ yellow my eyes hurt.
Lineups: Bernard is in for Anthony Gordon, with Alex Iwobi switching to the right - hopefully he won’t be as anonymous there as he was on Sunday. No other changes anywhere else.
Four changes for Norwich, and some big ones too, with Cantwell, Buendia, Pukki and Trybull all getting the hook. Blues should not be satisfied with anything less than a big win.
Everton are back in action after the coronavirus-enforced interruption, marking their return to football with a Merseyside Derby draw against Liverpool on Sunday. Next up is a trip to East Anglia to take on Norwich City, who sit at the basement of the league table.
While Carlo Ancelotti was satisfied to take the clean sheet and the single point procured, he would have definitely relished the win had any one of the late flurry of chances been converted. For the Blues to maintain any relevance in a packed midtable though, they are going to need to start racking up the wins with only eight games left to play.
The twice-a-week packed schedule is going to make for selection issues given how thin Everton’s squad is, and with five substitutes allowed there is an opportunity for Ancelotti to gauge the futures of a number of younger and veteran players.
Today’s game is a perfect opportunity to play a more expansive game. The Canaries have looked suspect against teams that have pressed them high and taken the game to them. We could expect to see Moise Kean and Anthony Gordon get significant minutes, with Gylfi Sigurdsson slotting in the playmaker role in the middle of the park.
Norwich are an interesting ‘smaller’ side. Defensive rigidity be damned, Daniel Farke is most likely going to get relegated, but he’s going to do it playing an open and attacking style that is unheard of from sides that live in the drop zone. It worked well against a lethargic Everton at Goodison earlier this season with tactically naive Marco Silva in charge, but it would be a huge surprise if Ancelotti is caught out by that.
The hosts face five of the big six in their remaining games, so clashes like today’s against Everton and sides around them like Watford FC and West Ham United represent Farke’s best chance of collecting enough points to climb to safety. They looked particularly susceptible when Southampton ran at them with pace over the weekend, and gave away plenty of shooting opportunities, both things Everton should look to do today.
Competition: Premier League Matchday 31
Date and start time: Wednesday, June 24th at 10:00 a.m. PT / 1:00 p.m ET / 6:00 p.m. BST
Stadium: Carrow Road Stadium, Norwich, England, United Kingdom
Weather: 78°F/26°C, sunny, 1% chance of precipitation, 10 mph winds
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Starting XI: Pickford, Coleman, Holgate, Keane, Digne, Iwobi, Gomes, Davies, Bernard, Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin
Subs: Stekelenburg, Virginia, Baines, Martina, Branthwaite, Beningime, Sigurdsson, Gordon, Kean
Starting XI: Krul; Aarons, Godfrey, Klose, Lewis; McLean, Tettey; Rupp, Duda, Hernández; Drmic.
Subs: Trybull, Leitner, Cantwell, Stiepermann, Buendía, Vrancic, Pukki, McGovern, Idah
The Blues hosted Norwich in late November 2019, with Todd Cantwell running riot all over the pitch and Everton powerless to stop him. Those last days of Silva’s tenure were extremely frustrating to watch, especially as it looked like the players had quit on a clueless manager.
The last time Everton traveled to Carrow Road was back in December 2015, with a Romelu Lukaku goal in a 1-1 draw.