Analysis

FLIP Picks In-Play: Everton vs Swansea

Written by Sam Hopkinson

Roberto Martinez was so angry at Chelsea’s offside equaliser that he could barely speak in the post-match interviews. Everton should have won a game they led 2-0 at one point and this kind of collapse hints at a frailty that should not exist for a team with so many talented players. The Toffees play wonderful attacking football but leak goals week in week out. Swansea for their part have managed to escape the relegation zone for now but will be right back in it should Newcastle better their result. It’s hard to put your finger on exactly what’s going wrong but with new manager Guidolin having had a chance to work with his new team it’s reasonable to expect a little improvement.

DEFENDER

Ashley Williams

Although Swansea will be unhappy to be in a relegation scrap, the fans must be delighted they have a defender and captain like Ashley Williams in the side. He was MotM and the only goalscorer in a much needed win over struggling Watford last time out. It would appear that Williams is going to step up and drag the malfunctioning Swans over the line by himself if he has to. Considering how deadly Everton’s attack can be, the Welshman is needed more than ever.

MIDFIELDER

Ross Barkley

England’s bright new hope, Barkley is going to be subjected to more and more pressure as the season rolls on. Not only will England demand a lot from him in the summer, but the papers will start to link him with some big teams—and that can put a player off when his concentration and focus need to be total. Barkley’s creativity and strength were on show against Chelsea and he combines so well with Lukaku it’s difficult to imagine the Toffees not scoring in this match.

STRIKER

Romelu Lukaku

The Belgian goal machine shows no signs of slowing down and is a good bet to win the Golden Boot come May. However, if Everton don’t stop leaking goals they will lose him for sure in the summer. This would be a crying shame considering their wonderful play at times this season—and a big part of that is Lukaku’s rise to top class striking material. He was good before, but he’s great now.

HONOURABLE MENTION

Gylfi Siggurdson

Ex-Tottenham midfielder Siggurdson might not be having the best of seasons, but there is little doubt that he’s a great player to have, especially in a relegation battle. While he is rightly lauded for his creativity it is his willingness to run and run for the team that is worth its weight in gold right now. The Icelander never stops battling and if Swansea stay up he ought to earn some credit from neutrals across the country.

About the author

Sam Hopkinson

Sam has attended matches everywhere from Cambodia to Canada, and is a persistent Spurs fan. If he didn't have football, he'd probably turn to a life of crime just to get that exhilarating fix. Superstitious enough to believe that picking a player for his fantasy team spells doom for the poor sod.