So the fixtures are upon us for the 2015/16 season. And the fixture computer has not been kind… by Phil Barton. Follow us on Twitter: @evertoniansclub
I’m sure everyone has looked at their most coveted fixtures, be it the game against them lot across the park, or a traditional away pilgrimage or even particular events like the nearest game to your birthday (Watford away for me…).
Regular readers of this site know that I like to analyse certain groups of games to try and see where our points may come from. The good news I have been pretty good at predicting points totals from groups of 6 or 10 games. The bad news is that I’m a pessimist.
So, let’s have a look at next season’s fixtures. As you’ll see below I have produced a chart showing our fixtures and put the respective score from last year into the chart. I’ve ignored those that have come up as opposed to having ‘equivalent’ results against those that went down as Bournemouth especially as an unknown quantity to most of us!
The bad news is that there are lots of games coming up which indicate runs where we’ll struggle. I guess the positive we can take is that we didn’t win many games last year so it might not mean too much? Is that a positive? Anyone?
So, here we go. We start with a game against Watford which unfortunately we MUST win. Anything other than that and we’ll be low on confidence going into a run of 9 games where we may struggle to pick up points in many of those matches. Might sound dramatic, but that’s just the way it looks.
|Man City||22/AUG||Home||Drew 1-1|
|West Brom||26/SEPT||Away||Won 2-0|
|Man Utd||17/OCT||Home||Won 3-0|
Of those first ten games we only won 2 of the equivalent matches last season, with those games being Man United at home, who surely can’t be as bad as they were in April, and West Brom away. We have done quite well at the Baggies ground in the last two seasons but we all remember the 4-0 drubbing from a few years back so confidence isn’t sky-high for that one. Our other away games are tricky, with Southampton, Spurs, Arsenal and Swansea all providing hard tests.
The home games here will also be challenging yet (hopefully) enjoyable – Man City is always fun before Chelsea roll into town and then the other shower come across Stanley Park. They have a pretty horrific run of fixtures themselves to start the season so the traditional draw is worth betting on now!
Last season’s Points from these fixtures: 9 (with one n/a)
Prediction from first ten games: 11 points
|West Ham||7/NOV||Away||Won 2-1|
|Aston Villa||21/NOV||Home||Won 3-0|
|Crystal Palace||5/DEC||Home||Lost 3-2|
|Leicester City||19/DEC||Home||Drew 2-2|
Following this run of matches we have an opportunity to get some points on the board properly. However, it’s only a run of 7 games meaning we must maximise our chances. Luckily we’re normally half-decent in November!
Sunderland beat us at home last season (again) but we should put that right before the normal 3 points against West Ham and Villa (at home at least) builds on that confidence. Other matches against teams that could be in the lower part of the league need to be capitalised on. We couldn’t break these teams down last season so we can only believe in Martinez to have a plan B for the matches.
Last season’s Points from these fixtures: 7 (with two n/a)
Prediction from these seven games: 16 points
|Newcastle Utd||26/DEC||Away||Lost 3-2|
|Stoke City||28/DEC||Home||Lost 1-0|
|Man City||13/JAN||Away||Lost 1-0|
|Newcastle Utd||3/FEB||Home||Won 3-0|
|Stoke City||6/FEB||Away||Lost 2-0|
|West Brom||13/FEB||Home||Drew 0-0|
|Aston Villa||1/MAR||Away||Drew 1-1|
And now another run of games that could be described as ‘challenging’ based on last season’s results. Hopefully a good run of points from the last 7 games will lead us into a charge up the table, but of the next 10 matches we only won one of the fixtures in 2014/15.
Newcastle away will be tricky but one we should get points from if they struggle as expected before 4 matches that we lost 1-0 last time around. The Stoke and Spurs results should be improved upon. We’ll then ignore City and Chelsea away and hope that Swansea and Newcastle can be beaten as well as West Brom at home as we play Stoke, Liverpool and Villa away during this period. Not the most difficult games we’ll play, but last season we really failed to break the teams down and create chances.
Last season’s Points from these fixtures: 7
Prediction from these seven games: 17 points
|West Ham||5/MAR||Home||Won 2-1|
|Man United||2/APR||Away||Lost 2-1|
|Crystal Palace||23/APR||Away||Won 1-0|
|Leicester City||7/MAY||Away||Drew 2-2|
The last ten games of the season give us a nicer run-in than many of the teams we’ll expect to be challenging for the Europa League places, but as detailed above we have to keep fighting for points. The last four games of last season were pretty pathetic at times as the players pretty much sat on the beach as our opponents battled to the three points.
The only win we got in the last 4 games was against West Ham, who we’ll beat at home and the rest of the results give plenty of opportunities for a good run if we can stay focused. Arsenal at home and Man United away should be by far our hardest games and momentum could carry us into the upper reaches of the league. We just need to change some of the draws from last year into wins.
Last season’s Points from these fixtures: 12 (with three n/a)
Prediction from these seven games: 20 points
Overall thoughts: well it could be a long hard season, but as everyone says, we play everyone home and away at some point! I just feel that the squad Martinez has put together, along with his management style, makes the Everton squad very confidence-based when it comes to results. A poor run here and there could really do damage to our overall chances.
From the teams we are playing this season, minus the 6 games against newly promoted sides we got 35 points. Gulp. Looks like we relied on getting quite a few points from the relegated teams; Burnley, QPR and Hull City.
I’ve predicted here that we’ll get 64 points somehow, and that seems very high. Maybe I’m not as pessimistic as I thought? What do you think?