Everton are safe.
The Blues will be playing in the Premier League next season.
But there’s one game left…
From Everton’s perspective, it will determine merely if the Blues are to finish 15th or 16th. If Everton better Southampton’s result (who are away to Leicester), they will finish 15th.
Arsenal are technically still chasing the Champions League, but that is only possible if the Gunners beat the Blues and Tottenham lose to bottom place Norwich.
It’s essentially a dead rubber, so how will the mighty Blues of Everton line up?
I think we can assume the injury list won’t have changed since Thursday, which means Yerry Mina, Nathan Patterson, Fabian Delph and Andros Townsend are all out, while Salomon Rondon remains suspended.
Jarrad Branthwaite is available once more after his suspension.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison seemed to be nursing slight injuries on Thursday, so it would seem to be unnecessary to further risk them. Let them rest and get ready for the new season… hopefully still at Everton.
Likewise Ben Godfrey and Donny van de Beek only just returned to the bench during the week and so would also seem like unnecessary inclusions to start.
EVERTON SQUAD AVAILABLE VS ARSENAL
Goalkeepers: Pickford, Begovic, Lonergan
Mina (INJURY), Godfrey (DOUBT), Holgate, Branthwaite, Mykolenko, Coleman, Kenny, Patterson (INJURY)
Midfielders: Allan, Doucoure,
Delph (INJURY), Gomes, Dele, van de Beek (DOUBT), Davies
Wingers: Gray, Gordon,
Townsend (INJURY), Iwobi, El Ghazi
Attackers: Calvert-Lewin (DOUBT), Richarlison (DOUBT),
Rondon (SUSPENDED), Tosun, Dobbin
Tactics and Formation
It’s time to lay the 5-4-1 to rest. A 4-3-3 salvaged the Blues on Thursday at half-time, so it’s time to look towards a progressive future.
Dele was a decisive half-time sub on Thursday, so he needs to finally start his first game. It’s beyond bizarre that the January signing hasn’t started a game for the Blues yet – especially when Andre Gomes is.
If DCL and Richarlison are rested, it could be significant changes for the Blues. I’m hoping to see some young blood given a chance here. Isaac Price, Reece Welch and Lewis Dobbin seem to be the likely candidates.
I do wonder if Jonjoe Kenny will also be given a final opportunity to make his case for a new contract too. Likewise Tom Davies might get a chance to show Frank what he can/can’t do.
Starters (likelihood of starting rated out of 10)
Jordan Pickford – 10/10
Jonjoe Kenny – 6/10
A final chance for the Academy graduate?
Mason Holgate – 10/10
Michael Keane – 8/10
Vitaliy Mykolenko – 9/10
Tom Davies – 6/10
Chance to impress after a long lay-off?
Abdoulaye Doucoure – 7/10
Alex Iwobi – 9/10
Anthony Gordon – 8/10
Dele – 7/10
Deserves a start and could operate in a fluid front three if neither Richie or DCL are fit to start.
Demarai Gray – 7/10
Richarlison – Or maybe a chance for Lewis Dobbin