Final Thoughts - Boy Everton don’t make it easy do they. This wasn’t as close as the one against Southampton though it was the same result. West Brom are just about Championship level and their play today showed, and Everton had just about enough in the tank to take the lead and then hold it.
90+6’ - One last throw.. there’s the whistle!! EVERTON WIN!
90+3’ - West Brom score through Diagne! Assistant referee has his flag up right away and Everton survive!! Oh my. VAR proves it was just millimetres and Everton have gotten so lucky.
90’ - The up-and-unders are causing Everton some horrors but they have dealt with all of them so far. Five minutes added on.
85’ - Great touch from Godfrey to block a cross into the box. Allan with a double block now. Whew.
Josh King is on by the way for Bernard.
80’ - Deep cross into the box and Holgate heads out for a corner, safety first. Corner headed away by DCL.
78’ - Everton are in their 4-4-2 diamond again. Sigurdsson at the tip, Bernard on the right and Gomes on the left with Allan at the base.
76’ - Gomes clatters Maitland-Niles, Digne gets a pass into the box and DCL’s snapshot is way over.
75’ - Richy almost finds DCL running around the back, Bartley slides in.
73’ - West Brom corner, skimmed low and cleared, another crossing chance low into the six-yard box and Pickford collects.
71’ - Gomes lucky to avoid getting a card for holding up play.. tactical foul they call them.
Everton on the break and DCL almost finds Gomes in the middle but it’s cleared.
68’ - Now Furlong in the book too, hauling down Digne just on the edge of the box and the goalline. Almost a penalty, freekick instead. Digne is holding his ankle and looking very unhappy. Punched away well.
65’ - Doucoure is hobbling and comes off now, Gylfi Sigurdsson comes on and will take a corner right away. Ancelotti insists that Gylfi take it even though Digne is over it, cleared back to the Icelander, who crosses back into the box and Richarlison!! GOAL!!
60’ - Richy was about to get away from Dara O’Shea and is yanked down, yellow card for him. Freekick on the left, Digne into the box.. overhit and DCL lays it off for Allan to cross, the goalie comes out to gather.
58’ - Ancelotti makes the first change, putting Iwobi out of his misery and Allan is on.
Normal service has resumed at SBN, sorry about that interruption folks.
56’ - Gomes lets off a shot from distance, gathered easily low by Johnstone
54’ - Blues living dangerously. Gallagher does well in the box, jinks free and shoots/crosses through the six yard box, lucky for the Blues no striped shirts near it.
51’ - Pereira gets off a shot from outside the box, Pickford gathers no problem.
Off a long throw Diagne with a header that flashes just over, Pickford was under it.
47’ - Now Everton holding the ball around the West Brom box, but no real chances. Better that.
46’ - Second half underway. More of the same as the Baggies straight into attack and Everton losing the ball.
Halftime Thoughts - Two words, not sharp. Everton have just not been sharp enough. Defending, passing, attacking, shooting, just missing that precision.
45’ - One minute added on. Nothing comes of it, and it’s 0-0, halftime.
44’ - Good run across from Iwobi, Digne finds Richy who tries to shoot but it’s blocked.
42’ - Now Everton chance.. deflection falls to Dom in space and can only shoot straight at Johnstone.
41’ - Long throw cleared, cross back into the box to Diagne, offside.
38’ - Blues break with Bernard controlling the move, finds DCL who plays in Richy on the left, his shot is blocked for a corner.
Digne’s corner is cleared, comes back to him though and his cross is blocked.
37’ - Holgate the first into the box, taking down Diagne heavily in the West Brom half.
34’ - Digne blocks a cross for a corner from the Blues left. Melee in the box and cleared, whew.
28’ - Godfrey with an excellent run right from his own box, starts the counter and attempts a shot from outside the box that is deflected for their first corner. Foul in the box by Holgate, and the home side can clear.
23’ - Finally a shot. Digne finds DCL, who sets up Richy for a shot, deflected and bounces safely to the goalie.
22’ - Everton can’t clear their lines and WBA can cross it in again, Pickford comes to gather drops it and then falls on the rebound. Gritting my teeth here.
19’ - Iwobi’s first cross is not deep enough and cleared. At least it got near the box, I suppose.
17’ - Everton are finally controlling the ball, but West Brom are packing the middle and nothing’s coming off right now.
Giveaway in the middle and WBA break, cross into the box, comes to Diagne, swivels and hits it way over
13’ - Everton looking to stretch the backline with some through passes, can’t beat the offside flag yet.
10’ - Iwobi the latest to give the ball give away in a dangerous area, and another cross into the box headed away.
6’ - Digne caught offside working a neat ove with Bernard and Richarlison.
4’ - Now Holgate gives away the ball right next to his box, and a cross into the box from WBA, headed clear. Focus boys!
3’ - Gomes with the awful turnover allows Gallagher to cross into the box Diagne heads towards goal and Pickford does very well to palm it away. Diagne gets to the rebound and then falls over looking for a penalty, ref not interested.
1’ - We’re underway at the Hawthorns.
Lineups are out, and James Rodriguez, Tom Davies, Seamus Coleman and Robin Olsen are not fit, but good news for Iwobi & Bernard. This looks more like a traditional 4-2-3-1 with Allan on the bench. Also saw a shout for a 3-4-3 with Digne and Iwobi as wingbacks, which could be interesting and a bit radical too.
Pickford, Holgate, Keane, Godfrey, Digne, Iwobi, Doucoure, Gomes, Bernard, Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin.
Subs: Virginia, Tyrer, Allan, Sigurdsson, King, Nkounkou, Broadhead, Onyango
Johnstone; Furlong, O’Shea, Bartley, Townsend; Yokuslu, Phillips, Gallagher, Maitland-Niles; Phillips, Diagne, Pereira.
Subs: Button, Peltier, Ajayi, Livermore, Sawyers, Snodgrass, Robinson, Grant, Robson-Kanu.
After a close win at Goodison Park over Southampton finally rectified the Blues’ home form, Everton travel to West Bromwich Albion looking to keep their very good away run going. It won’t come easy though despite the hosts sitting one spot off the bottom of the table with former Toffees manager Sam Allardyce now charged with rescuing the Baggies.
When West Brom had visited Goodison earlier in the season, they were playing a more expansive version of football under former Blue Slaven Bilic. Big Sam however has gone with a 4-1-4-1 that packs the midfield and allows Okay Yokuslu to sit in front of the low-block backline.
Carlo Ancelotti’s challenge will be to break through the lines and get a lead early to force the Baggies to come out of their shell. The longer this game remains scoreless, the more confident the hosts will be in nicking a goal on the counter off Mbaye Diagne or a setpiece opportunity.
Competition: Premier League Matchday 26
Date and start time: Thursday, March 4th at 10:00 a.m. PT / 1:00 p.m ET / 6:00 p.m. BST
Stadium: The Hawthorns, West Midlands, England, United Kingdom
Capacity: 26,688 [Behind closed doors]
Weather: 41°F/5°C, showers, 54% chance of precipitation, 4 mph winds
How to Watch/Listen
TV: Peacock - United States; Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Sports Premier League, Sky Sports Ultra HD - United Kingdom; DAZN - Canada, beIN Sports HD 1 & 8, SuperSport Variety 2 ROA, RMC Sport 2, Canal+ Sport 4 Afrique, Star Sports Select 2,
Live stream: Fubo, Sky GO Extra, ESPN Play Sur, beIN SPORTS CONNECT, DStv Now, RUSH, Hotstar VIP
Gamethread: Live blog above starting one hour before game time
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The Blues prevailed 5-2 earlier this season at home, taking advantage of Kieran Gibbs’ hissy fit that led to his sending off just before the break with Everton leading 2-1 at the time. Today will be like playing a very different team however, with less than half that side making Big Sam’s lineups now. The last time Everton went to the Hawthorns was in a dull 0-0 draw on Boxing Day 2017, and their last win there was the previous season with Kevin Mirallas and Gareth Barry grabbing the goals in a 2-1 victory.