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5 Telling Stats from Everton’s Groundhog Day Defeat to Fulham

Toffees stumble again facing lower table opposition

Everton v Fulham - Premier League - Goodison Park Photo by Oli Scarff/PA Images via Getty Images

This is beyond frustrating.

Every time Everton play a team they’re expected to comfortably beat at home, they put in the most sloth-like performance imaginable.

Groundhog day at Goodison Park.

This performance was so familiar, in fact, that I’ve just copied and pasted the 5 Telling Stats I wrote after our 0-2 defeat to Newcastle and updated it.

There was nothing new here…

*CTRL+C*

*CTRL+V*

Home Sick

Blues have lost 5 of last 8 home games in the league

Fortress Goodison?

No. Not at the moment.

On the contrary, Everton have picked up nine more points on the road so far this season from the same amount of games.

Home: P: 11 | W: 4 | D: 2 | L: 5 | PTS: 14 (14th in league)

Away: P: 11 | W: 7 | D: 2 | L: 2 | PTS: 23 (4th in league)

Predictably Unpredictable

Thrive against the top sides, cumbersome against the strugglers

Another quirky record for Everton this season has been their record against the top sides compared to lesser sides.

Indeed, this is surely due to the way the Blues approach these games. Everton are best as underdogs, when they can defend resolutely and try to plunder a goal. When they’re expected to dominate games, the issues arise.

Just look at the teams Everton have beaten and lost to since the Derby in October.

Wins: Chelsea, Arsenal, Leicester City, Wolves, Fulham, Sheffield United

Losses: Southampton, Newcastle (x2), Leeds United, West Ham United, Manchester United, Fulham

Half-Time

Everton haven’t won a game at Goodison that was level at half time in over a year

Just like Everton’s last three home defeats, the Blues were undone by second half goals after going in level at the break.

Worryingly, Everton haven’t won a game at Goodison that was level (or losing for that matter) since Boxing Day 2019 – a 1-0 win over Burnley in what was Carlo’s first game in charge.

Since then, they’ve been level on eight occasions at the break, winning none.

Level at the break:

2019/20:

Liverpool 0-0

Southampton 1-1

Aston Villa 1-1

2020/21:

Liverpool 2-2

Leeds 0-1

West Ham 0-2

Newcastle 0-2

Fulham 0-2

I actually wrote a piece a couple of weeks ago looking at Everton’s battle with adversity, which showed that we’ve not won a game that we were losing at half-time in over five years.

Sideways Sig

82.1% pass success rate, but to what end?

If you want a safe, conservative player that looks after the ball and rarely gives it away, Gylfi Sigurdsson is your man.

But if you want to play quickly, make forward passes and create chances, that he is not.

He plays sideways passes relentlessly.

Once again, he didn’t play any successful passes anywhere near the Newcastle Fulham penalty area.

Sigurdsson Pass Map v Fulham (attacking left to right!)

In fairness, it’s not just Sig. It’s also Andre Gomes. It’s Everton’s centre-halves (whoever they are). It’s too many of Everton’s players.

Sliding Doors

Everton are equidistant between 4th and 10th

This season is an opportunity. There might not be a league campaign as open as this for a long, long time.

And right now, Everton are blowing it after a positive start.

They simply can’t keep throwing away points against bottom half sides, especially at Goodison.

As of Sunday night, Everton are seventh. Three points behind the Reds in fourth, but just three points clear of Arsenal in 10th.

Which way will this season go? We’re still waiting to find out.