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Tuesday, July 16, 2024

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Premier League: West Brom vs Everton; Big Sam back to haunt The Toffees?

Once upon a time Everton were in such a desperate situation that the hierarchy thought it would be a sensible idea to hire relegation specialist Sam Allardyce.

Spoiler alert, it did not go well.

Everton were never in a relegation battle so Big Sam was never needed but the supporters had to watch their side play poor football for the rest of the 17/18 season, even though the once English manager did get them to a respectable eighth place.

Now Allardyce is back to face Everton for the first time since he had the job, and he is in dire need of three points.

Whereas Everton are flying high in the table.

As high as Allardyce imagined he would be if he had more time in the job.

But Carlo Ancelotti is the one who is taking Everton to the next level with his side just one point off the top four with a game in hand.

It was a hard fought and well earned three points against Southampton on Monday night as Everton scored early and then defended well for the rest of the game with Pickford pulling off one big save to get the victory.

The English goalkeeper has been playing well since he came back from injury but that doesn’t guarantee that he will be starting against The Baggies.

Ancelotti in his press conference said: “Rotation will be important to avoid injury and keep all the players motivated.”

However, it would be a surprise to see Pickford dropped for Robin Olsen, who might not be match-fit anyway, but Ancleotti has been full of surprises this season.

In terms of injury news Ancelotti confirmed that Yerry Mina, Fabian Delph and Jean-Phillipe Gbamin are all still out.

James Rodriguez, who was not involved at all against Southampton, will be checked in training as well as Tom Davies and Seamus Coleman.

West Brom will put up a good fight just like they did in their previous game against Brighton as they look to get out of the horrible position they find themselves in and Ancleotti knows this more than anyone.

“It seems they have more consistency and are fighting to avoid relegation. I’m sure they will be really motivated for this game. We also have to be strong and motivated” said the Italian.

For West Brom Robert Snodgrass will be back in the squad and they also have no fresh injuries.

It will certainly be an interesting contest as West Brom have to win and cannot afford to just sit back.

Everton also need to throw everything at it as they will not get a better chance to qualify for the Champions League, they cannot afford to slip up in any simple enough games on paper if they want to achieve their dream.

But it would be typical for Sam Allardyce, who was not the most liked manager in Everton’s history, to come and ruin Everton’s good momentum.

Football is a funny old game and some things are written maybe not in the stars but purely to wind supporters up.

Evertonians will be hoping that this is not one of those times.

Written by Elliot Thompson

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