Despite a late charge which saw Lucas Digne turn the ball into his own net to bring Everton back into the game, Lampard’s men could not overcome Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa, making it two defeats out of two at the beginning of the 2022/23 Premier League season. It’s been 13 years since the Blues last managed zero points from their first six available, but David Moyes did manage to steer them to an 8th place finish that season. Let’s hope Frank can spark a similar turnaround.
Everton have lost each of their first 2 league games of the season for the first time since 2009. #EFC— EFC Statto (@EFC_Statto) August 13, 2022
The Villains opened the scoring in the 31st minute through a familiar foe for the Toffees. According to Opta, Danny Ings has scored the opening goal in more Premier League games (20) than any other player since the beginning of the 2019/20 season. When you combine that fact with the former Liverpool striker’s love for scoring against the Blues, it was inevitable that his name would be the first on the scoresheet this afternoon.
First Half Floundering
Although the introduction of Salomón Rondón in the second half successfully changed Everton’s dynamic going forward, the remaining absence of any recognized striker in the starting lineup was unsurprisingly glaring. The fact of the matter is that Thelwell and co. MUST get a goal-scorer in through the door before the transfer window shuts or the Toffees could be in big trouble this season.
Pinning all of our hopes on Calvert-Lewin to find the back of the net is a perilous proposition, especially considering his ongoing struggle with injuries and fitness. It seems the club’s hierarchy is aware of this fact and is working towards an arrival in that area, and the sooner the better.
Everton have failed to have a shot on target in the first half in six of their 11 Premier League away games in 2022.— Squawka (@Squawka) August 13, 2022
Iwobi Impresses Again
Yet again, Alex Iwobi stood out as Everton’s best player despite being employed outside his natural position. Despite Doucoure’s early exit due to hamstring tightness and the introduction of the less defensively-sound Tom Davies, Iwobi was able to impact the game from central midfield and was by far the most composed and progressive player in yellow on the day. Despite Amadou Onana’s impressive cameo and the potential incoming of a true number 6 such as Gueye or Camara, it’s hard to see how Alex Iwobi could be justifiably dropped from the XI any time soon.
Alex Iwobi's stats against Aston Villa:— EFC Statto (@EFC_Statto) August 13, 2022
Touches - 59
Successful passes - 39
Successful attacking third passes - 13
Successful long balls - 4
Chances created - 2
Pass accuracy - 80%
Recoveries - 6
Successful tackles - 4
Successful dribbles - 1
Clearances - 1#EFC #AVLEVE
It’s no secret that Everton must improve their form away from home in order to keep themselves out of the relegation conversation this season. Although they were consigned to another defeat away from home today, one would hope that the defensive reinforcements brought to the club this summer would help tighten up a defense that conceded for fun on the road last season. Surely their plunders on the road this season will be an improvement on last year’s; it’s nearly impossible for it to be worse!