And the threat is still real, but our future remains absolutely in our hands. The thing is, we need to start winning more Premier League games – especially on the road. The Blues have won just one away game this season and that came away to Brighton & Hove Albion back in August. Since then the Blues have mustered just three points on the road from 10 games, the worst record in the league. Ironically those points came at Old Trafford and Stamford Bridge, while the Toffees folded in trips to Brentford, Norwich, Southampton and Newcastle.
So how will Super Frank set up his Mighty Blues in order to get a result in his hometown?
Quite a few question marks here.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin should be available after his latest injury problem, but it would seem a somewhat foolish endeavour to rush him back into the starting line-up considering the issues he’s faced this season.
Andre Gomes is also back in training but he won’t be starting anyway, especially against Heung-Min Son. Demarai Gray missed Thursday’s game with a mild fever, but there’s a good chance he’ll start if he’s healthy. Ben Godfrey is nearing a return, but not yet. Yerry Mina is still a while off.
There’s no word on whether Mykolenko will be available against Spurs after hobbling off in the FA Cup, although it didn’t look too serious but he may be left out given the shocking situation from his home country this week and the fact that his father has signed to fight for his homeland Ukraine.
There’s some really good news on the injury front, with Abdoulaye Doucoure and Demarai Gray once again available. Doucoure, in particular, is a massive boost for the Blues midfield.
EVERTON SQUAD AVAILABLE VS NEWCASTLE
Goalkeepers: Pickford, Begovic, Lonergan
Mina (INJURY), Godfrey (INJURY), Holgate, Branthwaite, Mykolenko (DOUBT), Coleman, Kenny, Patterson, Holgate
Midfielders: Allan, Doucoure,
Delph (INJURY), Gomes (DOUBT), Alli, van de Beek, Onyango, Davies (INJURY)
Wingers: Gray (DOUBT), Gordon, Townsend, Iwobi, El Ghazi
Attackers: Calvert-Lewin (DOUBT), Richarlison, Rondon, Tosun, Dobbin
Tactics and Formation
The Blues should return to a 4-3-3 setup that’s shown some potential under Frank Lampard.
The defence and midfield picks itself at the moment, so the main question is the front line. Specifically, will Richarlison lead the line in place of Calvert-Lewin and who will feature on the right wing (Messrs Gray, Iwobi, Townsend and even El-Ghazi are all vying for the spot)?
Starters (likelihood of starting rated out of 10)
Jordan Pickford – 10/10
Seamus Coleman – 9/10
Jonjoe Kenny - 9/10
Michael Keane – 10/10
Mason Holgate – 10/10
Allan - 10/10
Donny van de Beek – 9/10
Abdoulaye Doucoure – 10/10
Richarlison – 10/10
Anthony Gordon – 8/10
Has really kicked on this season to the point where he’s our probably our first-choice winger now.
Alex Iwobi – 6/10
If Gray’s not at 100%, Iwobi will probably get the nod.
Dele Alli - Unlikely he gets the start at his former home ground, but should get a few minutes here.
Andros Townsend - Was shocking against Boreham Wood especially with turnovers, is he still not fully fit?
Salomon Rondon - The brace on Thursday will have done his confidence wonders, but is not likely to play unless the Blues desperately need goals here late on.