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5 Telling Stats from Everton’s Regrettable Defeat Against Leicester City

The Toffees spurned two golden opportunities and the Foxes made them pay

Everton FC v Crystal Palace - Premier League Photo by Tony McArdle/Everton FC via Getty Images

Failing Forwards

Yet again, Everton sputtered going forward. The Toffees’ two best chances fell to Alex Iwobi and Dominic Calvert-Lewin respectively, but the former dragged his effort wide while the latter couldn’t beat Danny Ward when through on goal. Otherwise, the Blues offered very little going forward despite being egged on by a packed Goodison Park under the lights. Either the decision-making or technical quality was lacking in each and every attack. Everton’s inability to score consistently is now becoming more than concerning. It seems at the moment that the brilliant attacking display against Crystal Palace was more of a one-off than a sign of good things to come. Hopefully, that isn’t the case.

Opportunities Afforded

Although Everton’s defensive record has been much improved thus far this season, with only the current Top 3 of Arsenal, City, and Newcastle having conceded fewer, it is also true that they have been lucky in certain instances in terms of not being punished for the relatively high volume of chances they’ve been allowing. Although Tielemans’ goal came from a chance with 0.02 xG and was subsequently unlucky for Everton to concede, Leicester most certainly deserved a goal in the first half, and just happened to score it from the most unlikely of their many, many chances. The Foxes ended the game having taken 22 shots with a combined total of 2.36 xG, according to Fotmob. The compactness of the squad is clearly an issue Lampard still needs to address.

Maddison’s Magic

James Maddison was, unsurprisingly, Leicester City’s key man on Saturday Night. He set up Tielemans’ wonder volley which opened the scoring in the first half as well as Harvey Barnes’ left-footed thumper which settled the affair, and he also hit the post with an effort of his own in the meantime. His 6 first-half shots were the most by a midfielder in the opening 45 minutes of a Premier League match since Paul Pogba in 2017. The difference in quality between Everton’s forward-minded players and Leicester’s was very apparent yesterday, and Maddison was the prime example. My mind will be blown if somehow is not on the plane to Qatar in a few weeks' time.

Tielemans’ Thunderbolt

I’m struggling to name a goal I’ve seen in person which compares to that quite incredible volley by Youri Tielemans just before halftime. As I said in my post-match reaction video, you cannot give the Belgian international that much space on the edge of the box. Wolves also learned this the hard way just a few weeks ago when he first-time pinged one top bins to open the scoring at Molineux. Tielemans is having his own Goal of the Season competition at this point; his technique is nothing short of ridiculous. He’s a fantastic player who should be playing in the Champions League, in my opinion.

Anthony’s Inadequacy

Much has been said about the continued struggles of all three of Everton’s available wingers in McNeil, Gray, and Gordon, but considering both the rumors swirling around him and the faith placed in him by the manager, the latter has been quite disappointing this season. Although his 3 league goals place him top of the squad at the moment, his overall play has been lackluster at best, and he has been unable to impact most games in which he’s played. Although I don’t believe the claim that Gordon is demanding £100k a week in order to pen a new deal at the club, I do believe that he must improve his performances before improved terms of any sort are discussed.