Dominic Calvert-Lewin has 50 goals for Everton’s first team so far in his young career. And while it is a remarkable statistic, the weight of it is felt by Evertonians and Toffees alike on days when the true number nine on Merseyside is absent from the squad. While the Royal Blue were able to weather the storm of Tottenham after DCL left with a hamstring issue, it seems that a combination of fatigue, lack of focus and hubris formed, with the absence of Calvert-Lewin, was too much for Everton to overcome in the weekend clash with Fulham at Goodison Park.
As I said before the Tottenham clash, a tough three game spell in just a week awaited us. As we have won and lost a game in turn, a victory against Manchester City will be of the utmost importance. Beating Fulham might have given Everton some cushion to drop points to the top team in English football. Yet with the shock loss to Fulham, that luxury no longer exists. Everton must win, and with DCL only potentially able to return, and surely not at full strength, it will be a daunting task for the club.
Regardless of that outcome however, Everton have a star from Sheffield in their midst, and should he continue on his torrid pace, he could not only bring silverware on the Royal Blue side of Merseyside, but also live in the history as an all time great number nine for the club.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin: Fifty Goals Down, How Many More To Come?
Regardless of how we’d like to read and regurgitate the stats, the player has shown remarkable skill at still only twenty-three years old, albeit for only a few weeks longer. With such an advanced individual resume, at such a young age, under the tutelage of Don Carlo Ancelotti, the sky is literally the limit for the player.
Could he one day be considered amongst the best number nines to play under the famous Italian boss? I believe so, yet this will likely be a topic more easily discussed in ten to twelve years than today. Today, we are discussing exactly to what heights a player like DCL might take the club and in turn, himself; with the proper luck and managers, he could certainly find himself revered as some of the great names of the club have been. Both personal and team growth regarding the player will involve his continued progress however, as the leaps he has taken under Big Duncan Ferguson and Don Carlo are only the start truly.
Great players are great, no matter who coaches them, it is true. Yet greatness without great coaching becomes frustrated and, while it may still preform like genius, is not in the right atmosphere to fulfill the potential that it has inside of itself. Messi in Barcelona is a great example, with numerous managers over the last years of his career in Catalonia, no one would argue that the player isn’t a world beater, yet with a lackluster team and bosses beside him, he does not shine as he did in previous campaigns, with legendary bosses or players.
To return to Everton, Merseyside and DCL, getting to Europe is crucial for keeping the player on Merseyside, as well as his growth as a player inside of a team. Everton need to play European football to continue building a truly competitive domestic roster, as well as to keep the talented players they already have at the club. Those players, whoever they may end up being, will have a part to play in how great Dominic Calvert-Lewin can become at Everton, as well as how many more goals he can score with, hopefully, so much time remaining in a very young and promising career.
With 20 goals across all competitions so far this season, the man from Sheffield has shown up nearly every match for his club, even when other big names did not. Yet with this injury to the hamstring, one cannot be sure exactly how great he will be for the rest of the season, unless it proved less severe or lingering than skeptics might believe it is currently.
Everton have a real chance to get there this year, despite trap game losses to Newcastle twice, Fulham and Leeds United once, as well as Southampton. And while the rest of the club has to step up to the workrate that Calvert-Lewin brings nearly every match, greatness is always pushing itself even further ahead of the pack, raising the ceiling for its peers. That is precisely what Everton need right now, right this minute. The team continues to play down to their opposition after massive moments versus larger and more impressive outfits, and so someone like Calvert-Lewin must step up and lead not only by goals and assists, but with an aggressive tenacity that doesn’t let up no matter the opposition. When he brings that to his game and his team, truly then will he be unstoppable and, by sheer coincidence perhaps, the Toffees will be as well.