7 clear chances for Everton before the break and just the one goal meant every Blue knew what was coming next…
Social media exploded after the final whistle with people blaming the manager for poor subs and not stopping goals from set pieces, the keeper (again), John Stones for his showboating that led to their goal, and some for the attackers wasting chances.
In truth it’s a combination of each of these failings that have seen us mess up now in far too many games this season. Some will point at us being unbeaten in 8 games, but others will state that we’ve collected just three points from Bournemouth (2 goals up and winning in injury time), Norwich (goal up and tonnes of chances) and Palace (hit the post three times).
For me, we have done very well this season with a makeshift defence and dreadful goalkeeper but we have had so many chances in each of the matches to put the games out of sight it’s ridiculous.
We’ve so much talent in the attacking third with Lukaku, Barkley, Deulofeu and even Kone being much-improved that we should be scoring for fun in these types of games in a way that other teams haven’t a chance to get back into it.
Yes, Lukaku is on an amazing scoring run, although many of them have been easy tap-ins due to his great movement. If he’d managed to get some of his other chances on target we’d have surely won these games though. And with us not getting maximum points in matches such as this we move further away from that top 4 or Europa League spaces that we seem to want (even if no-one else does!).
My fear is that following the Euro 2016 tournament there will be a number of Champions League clubs sniffing around our top players such as Stones, Barkley and Lukaku. Barca could even come back in for Ged, although it seems he’ll stay here a little longer.
We have the chance to have a fantastic attacking Golden Generation who grow with the club and lead us into something special in a year or two. Will they want to stick around though if the ‘top’ clubs start offering daft wages and promises of title challenges?
Our next three games over the Xmas period will be challenging: Leicester at home, Newcastle away and Stoke at home. On paper that’s easy, but Leicester have huge confidence, Newcastle were very good v the RS last week at home and Stoke are horrible and will beat us 1-0.
Perhaps this is the challenge we need. COYB!!!