Everton v Norwich – Match Preview
Norwich were languishing in the relegation zone last month but have put together a five-match unbeaten run, including stunning home wins over Arsenal and Manchester United.
Last week’s 1-0 triumph over United was their best performance of the year and resulted in the Canaries moving up to 13th place on the table.
Anthony Pilkington was the hero last week, but much of their resurgence has been down to the performances of captain Grant Holt.
Holt has scored three of Norwich’s nine Premier League goals this campaign and always poses a threat for opposition defences.
Much of Norwich’s recent good form has centred around their strong home form, but they have also been more than respectable on the road with three draws from their five away matches.
Fifth-placed Everton made a flying start to the season but have since dropped off the pace with just one win from their past six matches.
Last week’s 2-1 loss at Reading was a massive disappointment considering they had taken an early lead and looked on track for victory until Adam Le Fondre bobbed up with two second-half goals.
But they return to Goodison Park with the confidence that they have yet to taste defeat on their home turf with three wins and two draws from their five matches.
Marouane Fellaini has been at the heart of much of Everton’s attacking moves this season and the Belgian star, who has scored six times this campaign, will be sorely missed through suspension.
With Everton’s squad already stretched through injury, 18-year-old midfielder Ross Barkley could be in line for a first appearance of the season after a successful loan stint at Sheffield Wednesday, while Darron Gibson is also in the mix after returning from injury in the under-21s on Sunday.
With matches against Arsenal, Manchester City and Tottenham to follow this weekend’s clash, it is imperative Everton claim maximum points to keep pace with the top four.
Prediction: Everton 2 – 1 Norwich