Everton nicked a 1-0 win at Carrow Road courtesy of Michael Keane’s headed winner from a corner.
But what did the numbers tell us about the performance?
Completed just 60.9% of his passes in first half
I had called for the likes of Davies, Kean and Gordon to get more minutes heading into Project Restart, and Davies put in a very solid showing after starting in the Derby.
However, it was the worst side of Tom Davies that we saw return at Norwich City.
The 21-year-old was extremely careless in possession and completed a meagre 60.9% of his passes in a lacklustre first half – the lowest pass success rate of any player on the field heading into the break (including both goalkeepers).
It was unsurprising, therefore, that he was hooked at half-time, with Carlo turning to the more experienced head of Gylfi Sigurdsson.
5 Shite Norwich Things:— Darren (@nsno_83) June 24, 2020
1. The most pre-seasony match ever. Proper Umbro Cup vibes.
2. Tom Davies.
3. That first half.
4. The new 5 subs rule.
5. Jonathan Pearce’s story about his day out in Norwich. Pure Partridge.
Gylfi completes 94.7% of his passes
And Carlo’s half-time move reaped instant dividends, with Gylfi Sigurdsson central in help getting Everton play the ball more through midfield and actually take the game to bottom of the table Norwich.
Indeed, in the opening 15 minutes of the second half, Sigurdsson completed 100% of his passes and ended the game with an outstanding 94.7% success rate.
Gylfi has come in for his fair share of criticism from Evertonians this season – from me included – but he looked much sharper and incisive here. One should also be wondering if simply dropping him will help provide vital motivation to him. After all, Walcott showed a great improvement in form (albeit it very briefly) after being dropped earlier in the season and that could well be the shot in the arm that the Icelandic midfielder also needs.
Let’s not forget, too, that Gylfi’s only goal this season came after appearing from the bench late on against Southampton.
Blues score during a dominant 15-minute window
This was not a great game to watch, but the first half was especially dire.
However, Everton looked rejuvenated after the break and took the game to Norwich for a good 15 minutes. Indeed, the Blues had just two shots in the whole of the first half, but managed four shots in the 15 minutes after the restart.
The Blues sadly took their foot of the gas once again in the closing stages and could have been punished for this against better opposition.
Yellow card within a minute of coming on
Moise Kean replaced Richarlison for the final 10 minutes, but it was almost instant regret on behalf of Carlo Ancelotti.
Kean got on the ball and had the option to play an easy ball across the box to continue the attack, instead he held onto the ball for too long and then tried an unsuccessful backheel before clattering into the Norwich player to try and win the ball back. It was a needless yellow card that restricted him for the rest of the game.
It feels like Kean is trying too hard on the ball and not hard enough off it. In his first cameos at the club, he kept the ball well and made good runs. Now, he desperately tries to make a big impression, over complicates matters, runs aimlessly out of possession and tries to break the net with every shot.
Moise needs to relax and focus on keeping the ball.
Iwobi Pros and Cons
Completes 4 dribbles, but no end product
Alex Iwobi is a player who hasn’t really thrived when given a role on the wing at Everton, and this game certainly showed both the good and the bad from him.
On the plus side, his fast feet caused problems down the Norwich left, however his pure lack of a final product (just 3 accurate crosses despite being in many good positions) ultimately limited his impact. If he can find that final ball, he could be a dangerous proposition on the right wing – a position in which the Blues have few options.
I’ve slagged Iwobi more than anyone else, second half he showed that he does have some qualities, looked a different player— Everton Extra (@EvertonExtra) June 24, 2020