Everton are away at Brentford this weekend looking to add more points to the total after picking up a draw last weekend after a 1-1 draw with Nottingham Forest at Goodison Park.
The Blues’ anaemic attack cost them a chance to grab more points last weekend as they continued to struggle in front of goal without striking reinforcements, especially with how ineffective both the ‘False 9’ and Salomon Rondon have been against Premier League opposition.
Everton are one of five teams in the league without a win so far, but considering the other four teams all have much deeper squads than the Blues it’s only a matter of time before they start pulling away leaving us sitting in the mire early in the season.
Neal Maupay is in the process of joining the Blues at the time of publishing this piece, and it’s still not clear whether the paperwork went through in time for the Friday 12pm deadline that will see him eligible to feature in Saturday’s trip to London.
Rumours continued to link Anthony Gordon with a move to Chelsea this week, and the forward was on the bench for Tuesday night’s narrow Carabao Cup win over Fleetwood Town which sees the Blues now travel to Bournemouth for the next round of the competition to be played in November.
Earlier today Frank Lampard seemed to indicate that no exorbitant £60m offer has come in for the youngster and that he is in the Blues’ squad for the game tomorrow. Meanwhile, Dele left Everton to join Besiktas on loan this week, and the proposed transfers of both Idrissa Gueye and Mohamed Kudus both appear to have stalled to Evertonians’ chagrin this week.
Everton continue to be linked with Blackburn Rovers’ forward Ben Brereton Diaz, but nothing definitive has been done regarding an approach for the player.
Brentford last season that they were determined not be one of the Premier League’s yo-yo clubs that would bounce up and down between the top flight and the Championship. Under Thomas Frank they showed the right amount of gritty resolve along with on-pitch application to get the right results to stay up, and will be looking to press on from that solid 13th placed finish.
During this summer’s transfer window the Bees have upgraded with some wily purchases, bringing in Lazio’s Thomas Strakosha between the sticks and veteran Burnley defender Ben Mee on free transfers, as well as smart purchases in the form of two Everton targets Mikkel Damsgaard and Keane Lewis-Potter, and young Scottish fullback Aaron Hickey too.
Everton 2-3 Brentford, May 15, 2022
The Blues played the Bees thrice last season with the London side doing the league double over Everton, 1-0 at home and 3-2 away, with the Toffees comfortably winning their FA Cup fixture at Goodison Park 4-1.
That late season clash was a drama-filled affair with Jarrad Branthwaite making a rookie mistake to get sent off early in the game after Everton had taken the lead. Brentford equalized against their short-handed rivals but the Blues were able to take the lead again at the stroke of halftime, but again the Bees pegged their hosts back scoring twice midway through the second half to gain a lead they wouldn’t relinquish, especially after the Toffees were reduced to nine men late on after Salomon Rondon’s rash two-footed tackle.
The only injury update for the Toffees is the return of Tom Davies who pulled out of the midweek Carabao Cup clash during pre-game warmups with an injury.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin will return to training next week, and the Blues are still without Abdoulaye Doucoure, Yerry Mina, Ben Godfrey, and Andros Townsend.
Allan is supposedly fit but has not been in the last couple of matchday squads and is likely on his way out of the club, while we are yet to hear anything regarding the whereabouts of Andre Gomes.
What They Said
Everton manager Frank Lampard on his striker search: “It will happen. And we have Dominic Calvert Lewin coming back. As I say so but it’s an area that we’re well aware of.
“Then the last thing we wanted to do is the last thing that we should do, is bring a player in on a whim or in a rush, there’s not going to improve the squad. Now and generally and I think those those are clear things if there have been any mistakes previously, we don’t want to make those.
“We want to work together joined up to make sure we make the right decisions for the club in the right areas. And it’s really important that we do that.”
Brentford boss Thomas Frank: “We definitely need to be on it. I think we have created a decent fortress at our home ground and we’d like to make it very difficult to come and play here.
“It’s here we need to pick up a lot of points and I know when our fans have been really on it they have created an incredible atmosphere - and we need that tomorrow. Can we play with that energy and intensity and on the front foot? More or less all games we made very difficult at home against every team last season.
“The fans live in the present 100% because they are ready for tomorrow, but that moment [beating United], that day, will always be in their memories. It’s a fantastic memory and that is what we try to do: create fantastic memories - hopefully a lot of them so we can get a lot of points.”
It’s hard to feel optimistic for this one. The Blues always look terrified when facing a strong and feisty opponent away from home, and this season has started pretty poorly. Everton gave a decent account of themselves in their games against Chelsea and Aston Villa, but since then both of those teams have been embarrassed in other fixtures, which pretty much tells you Everton’s level.
Against a physical side that will look to impose themselves early in the game and backed by a solid home crowd, it’s difficult to see Everton get any points in this one, further piling on the early pressure on Lampard’s side.