Road Misery Continues
If Everton are to escape relegation this season, then it is becoming starkly apparent that it will be their form at Goodison Park - aided by the fanatical home support - that steers them clear. Miserable away performances from the Blues seem to have no end in sight, the latest hapless non-effort against Southampton providing additional evidence as to the lack of cohesion and mental strength in this squad of players. Still, the team has some tough fixtures left to play at home too and manager Frank Lampard needs to discover a formula to enable his side to grind out a few points on the road.
Everton are winless in their last 10 games away from home in the Premier League (D2 L8) - their longest such run since a run of 16 away league games without a win from February to December 2017. #EFC— EFC Statto (@EFC_Statto) February 19, 2022
Toothless and Vulnerable
How can an identical side to the one that racked up 21 attempts, including ten on target just seven days earlier, look so utterly clueless in crafting chances at St. Mary’s Stadium on Saturday? Of their nine efforts against the Saints, only two came from inside the opposition penalty area, contrasted to 15 from 19 shots by the home side as Blues goalkeeper Jordan Pickford was bombarded from all angles. An Everton defence that held Leeds United to long-range pot-shots a week ago were back to their shaky selves away from home environs.
Southampton (2.91) 2-0 (0.29) Everton— The xG Philosophy (@xGPhilosophy) February 19, 2022
Dominic Calvert-Lewin has yet to find his best form after coming back from his extensive injury problems this season, but to get the best out of him, Everton are going to have to find a way to provide him with some useful aerial service. At the weekend, the tall striker was deprived of anything to attack in the box, as the Blues failed to find the target with any of their thirteen crossing attempts. He was still competitive against his markers, winning six of 13 aerial duels, but in areas of the pitch where he would do no harm, particularly as the home side swept up second balls throughout.
The Shining Light
Blues goalkeeper Pickford was at times fighting a lone battle to keep his team in the game, facing eleven on-target efforts from Southampton, including four classified as “big chances”, one being a patented free kick from the lethal James Ward-Prowse, which the Blues stopper managed to acrobatically tip wide. In a game where none of his teammates really showed up after a spirited first 15 minutes, the England man denied the Saints time and again to at least give the Toffees a theoretical shot at a result until late in the match.
Jordan Pickford's stats against Southampton:— EFC Statto (@EFC_Statto) February 19, 2022
Touches - 56
Goals conceded - 2
Saves - 9
Big chances saved - 2
Shots from inside the box saved - 7
Claims - 2
Punches - 1
Clearances - 1
Chances created - 1
Successful long balls - 19
Long ball accuracy - 50%#EFC #SOUEVE
Fortress St. Mary’s
Everton do need to collect some points away from home over their remaining 15 premier league fixtures, in order to ensure premier league survival, but a win on Saturday never looked particularly likely. The Blues have claimed all three points at Southampton on a mere three occasions since way back in 1993 - 21 meetings - and have won just one of the past six meetings at St. Mary’s, losing all the rest. In addition, the Saints have lost only a single league match at home all season, so a point for the visitors would have constituted a good result.