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Monday, April 22, 2024

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Premier League: Leicester City vs Everton; “we are not so far from the top but we are not there yet”

It is another tough game for Everton as they travel to the King Power stadium to face Leicester City but after the victory against Chelsea their tails are up.

Carlo Ancleotti certainly gave off that impression but is obviously staying grounded after the wretched run of form before the Chelsea victory.

The Italian said: “We are not at the same level as these teams, the fact we competed with Tottenham and Liverpool, we beat Chelsea is important for us. 

“It means we are not so far from the top but we are not there yet.”

It was a much-needed win for Everton after winning just the one in the past seven games and to beat one of the big six who have looked very impressive so far this season was great for the 2,000 spectators who were allowed in.

The performance was a proper hard fought defensive performance and it reminded everyone of when Ancleotti had just arrived.

Hard to beat but able to cause problems, it is what Evertonians want to see.

With the injury problems it may be the best way to play.

James Rodriguez and Seamus Coleman will yet again not be available alongside Lucas Digne, three key man for Everton.

Sitting deep without your two attacking full backs isn’t the worst way to go about things especially when the two replacement full backs are naturally central defenders.

Mason Holgate and Ben Godfrey both done a stellar job in the wide positions with Ancelotti praising the latter in his press conference.

“Ben is a good surprise for me because he is showing all of his quality, humble. We signed a really, really good defender.”

Another player who was played exceptionally well against Chelsea was the captain on the night Gylfi Sigurdsson.

Many fans seemed to have lost patience with the Icelandic international as his below par performances in the middle of the park were costing Everton big time, but they were pleasantly surprised on Saturday.

He scored the match-winning penalty and ran himself into the ground covering all areas on the pitch when needed.

Evertonians will be hoping this is a turned corner for Sigurdsson as there is no doubt the quality is there; he just needs to show it and Ancleotti knows that.

The Italian said: “He did really well, he supported the team defensively and offensively.  I am satisfied, he can improve his level but in this moment he is ok.”

Hopefully that little comment will be the hint that Sigurdsson needs.

He will have to perform at the same standard for this game as Leicester City don’t seem to be messing about in this early part of the season as they are only one point off the top.

Sitting deep will be imperative against Jamie Vardy who will be wanting to get in behind at every opportunity and he is only one goal behind Dominic Calvert-Lewin in the golden boot race.

Calvert-Lewin will be eager to not let Vardy overtake him, and he will need much better service from Richarlison who has been poor since coming back from suspension. 

The Brazilian also seemed to get up in Sigurdsson’s face about who was taking the penalty.

Last thing Everton need is Richarlison’s ego to get in the way of him getting back to his best but Ancleotti has managed some of the bets players to ever kick a ball so he will know how to handle it.

Everton seemed to be fading away into mid-table with horrendous form.

If they beat Brendan Rodgers’ side, they’ll be two points behind top.

Spirit of the blues back booming?

Written by Elliot Thompson

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