Everton host Man City at Goodison Park on Saturday evening in a massive match at the top and bottom of the table. Frank Lampard’s team were outstanding in their last home match and are totally reliant on the Goodison Park ‘12th man’ to get them out of the relegation mire. City have seen their lead over Liverpool cut to three points after losing to Tottenham, making this a must-win affair.
After a shocking run of league results which saw nine defeats in 12 matches, Rafa Benitez was sacked by the Toffees. A 2-1 loss at Norwich proved the final straw. A 1-0 home loss to Aston Villa followed under caretaker boss Duncan Ferguson.
Frank Lampard has overseen four matches. A 4-1 home win against Brentford in the FA Cup was followed by a poor 3-1 loss away at Newcastle. The side bounced back to thrash Leeds 3-0 at home in a fantastic, high intensity showing. Unfortunately, their away woes continued as they were beaten 2-0 at Southampton last time out.
Everton Team News
Lampard hopes to have Demarai Gray back in the squad for this one after a groin injury. Yerry Mina and Ben Godfrey remain absent in defence. Left-back Vitalii Mykolenko is available after COVID-19 but Jonjo Kenny could get the nod at left-back once again.
Abdoulaye Doucoure, Tom Davies and Fabian Delph are all out in midfield. Donny van der Beek could against partner Allan after the latter was subbed due to a yellow card at Southampton. Andre Gomes struggled after his introduction in Allan’s place.
Everton are in desperate need of points. Consecutive wins for Burnley and three wins in four for Newcastle have put the Toffees right in the relegation mix.
A draw would be a superb result here and could drag Leeds and Brentford into the dogfight at the bottom. Lampard’s side will play a high-energy style and look to press Man City.
Man City Form
City have been in incredible form in recent months. The side followed a shock 2-0 home defeat to Crystal Palace with 12 consecutive league victories. After a dominant performance to beat Chelsea 1-0 at home, they could only draw 1-1 at Southampton for a rare slip-up.
They bounced back to beat Brentford 2-0, won 4-0 at Norwich and thrashed Sporting Lisbon 5-0 in Portugal. They then suffered a shock 3-2 home loss to Tottenham, a match in which they conceded 2.0 xG. City equalised late but still found time to concede a third goal to lose the match.
Man City Team News
The side has a couple of doubts in attack with Jack Grealish nursing a shin problem and Gabriel Jesus missing of late with injury too. Youngster Cole Palmer is also out with a foot problem.
City are only expected to make one change from the Spurs defeat with Riyad Mahrez coming in. Ilkay Gundogan is expected to drop out having played alongside Rodri in a surprise double pivot system against Tottenham.
Man City Motivation
City have to win. Their lead at the summit is down to three points whilst they have an inferior goal difference to Liverpool now.
Guardiola’s side will look to take the sting out of the home crowd with plenty of possession in deeper areas whilst tiring out Everton’s attackers.
Everton have lost 5 of their last 8 home PL matches
Everton have won 2/2 home matches under Lampard (all comps)
Everton have conceded 2+ goals in each of their last 9 against City (all comps)
Man City have won 9 matches in a row against Everton in all competitions
City have won 8 of their last 9 away PL matches
City have scored 2+ goals in 8 of their last 10 away PL matches
This match is tough one for City in a heated environment. They should continue their fine record against the Toffees with a win though.
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