Everton will host Brentford at Goodison Park this afternoon in a clash that could be the difference between the side securing safety in the Premier League for next season or putting them deeper into relegation troubles.
Frank Lampard’s side are currently just two points ahead of Burnley and Leeds United in the league table with just three games to go, with both of their relegation rivals playing their fixtures earlier in the day.
The results taken by all three teams today will determine what position Everton will find themselves in for the final week of the season.
In terms of their chances today there are a number of injury concerns and doubts for the Toffees boss, with Fabian Delph and Yerry Mina ruled out for the game this afternoon, whilst Donny van de Beek and Ben Godfrey are doubtful on availability but were confirmed to make a comeback imminently.
Andros Townsend and Nathan Patterson remain sidelined with long term injury problems and are not expected to return before the end of the season.
With that being said, this is how Football FanCast expects Everton to line up against Brentford this afternoon…
We predict that the Toffees boss will make just two changes to his side, deploying a 3-4-3 formation against Thomas Frank’s team.
The long-awaited return of Dominic Calvert-Lewin is expected today, and he is the first change we predict with the striker reprising his role in the centre-forward position.
The 6 foot 1 forward who was hailed as “cold” by Carlo Ancelotti will make up the forward line alongside Richarlison and Anthony Gordon, with his Brazilian teammate moving back into his preferred position on the left winger, pushing Demarai Gray back onto the bench in today’s game.
The £42k-per-week dud has not been as effective as he was in the first half of the season with just one assist since he scored against Arsenal back in December last year, so it would make sense for Richarlison to take on the role on the left side of the attack with the 24-year-old much more effective in the position with four goals in his last seven appearances.
The final change we expect to see is Allan returning to his role in midfield alongside Abdoulaye Doucoure after Lampard confirmed that the squad has suffered a devastating injury blow to Fabian Delph, so the Brazilian will be relied upon to hold together the game from the centre of the pitch to replace Delph’s influence.
A win over Brentford today would put Everton on 39 points in the league table, and if Burnley or Leeds United don’t pick up points in their fixtures today it could put them five points clear of the relegation zone by the end of play, so Lampard will be hoping his team can continue their three-game unbeaten run.