The new Premier League season has just begun, but there have already been a lot of surprises. Inasmuch as some of the first 50 Premier League results were expected, there are quite a number that are surprising. If these outcomes are anything to go by, then football fans are in for an exciting season.
Everton, however, has been on the wrong end of this excitement. The Toffees haven’t won a single Premier League match, with their three points coming against Nottingham Forest, Brentford, and Leeds. The last time Everton endured such a poor start at the Premier League was in the 1990/91 season when it went 6 matches without a win.
Nevertheless, Sergio Aguero believes that the blue end of Merseyside could surprise many this season. Of course, it’s still early into the season but there are already a few signs that could inform your decisions if you’re a gambler. So, can you bank on Aguero’s prediction in your Premier League betting on Stake?
This article will assess Everton’s performance and how the summer changes could impact the success of Lampard’s side. But first, have a look at what the Argentine striker had to say about the Toffees:
Sergio Aguero’s predictions
Sergio Aguero is a household name in recent Premier League history, and why shouldn’t it be? The former Manchester City striker is remembered for his last-minute strike against QPR to win the Citizens the title in 2012 in what’s considered one of the tightest PL title races.
The 5-time Premier League champion believes that Lampard’s side could be a 2022/23 surprise package. The Argentine striker made 17 appearances and scored 5 goals against Everton during his 10-year spell at Manchester City.
Aguero has made his predictions on how the 2022/23 season will pan out, and he’s positive about Everton’s campaign. According to the legendary striker, the Toffees may surprise many despite struggling toward the end of last season. Lampard’s Everton had to win against Crystal Palace in its second last match to avoid relegation in the 2021/22 season.
Frank Lampard, Aguero’s former teammate, has seen his side struggle to get into its stride this season. Losing star man Richarlison to Tottenham in the summer hasn’t helped. However, the Evertonians are hopeful that the new member, Neal Maupay, will help solidify their attack.
It should be noted, though, that every team has reinforced its squad this season. Nottingham Forest, for one, has been one of the busiest in the market despite this being their first campaign in the Premier League after over 20 years. Aston Villa, Brighton, and Newcastle have also completed some deals in this window, and Aguero believes the three could also have a great season ahead.
The highest Everton has finished in recent years is 5th in the 2013/14 season under Roberto Martinez. Although Lampard’s team might not match that success given the current circumstances, every fan would be hoping to see an improvement from last season.
Finishing in the top half of the table should be Everton’s main goal this season. After attaining that, its next target should be European football (UEFA Champions League, Europa League, or Conference League). The Europa Conference League was introduced to allow more teams to play in Europe. However, qualifying for those spots is still challenging, especially given that every top team has added more quality to its squad. For instance, the top four seem competitive this season.
According to Sergio Aguero, Man City is still the favorite to lift the Premier League title. Aguero backed Liverpool, Chelsea, and Arsenal to secure the remaining top four positions. The legendary striker believes that Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur are other serious prospects, but they might not meet the cut to play next year’s Champion’s League football.
Everton in 2022/23
Last season was one that every Everton fan would want to forget. The club was at the brink of relegation, and everyone related to the Toffees hoped that the changes made over the summer would improve the results this season. So, what’s new this season?
The club-record sponsorship deal
The most significant change is a deal with a new shirt sponsor, Stake.com. Stake is a world leading crypto gambling platform, and its partnership with Everton is expected to impact positively on activities both on and off the pitch. Cazoo was the club’s sponsor for the 2020/21 and 2021/22 seasons with the company’s logo appearing on the players’ shirts throughout the two seasons.
The club chose not to extend the partnership as it went on in search of a more lucrative deal. This is why, on 1st July, 2022, Everton signed a club-record deal with Stake. The crypto gambling giant proved to be the best candidate because of its recent plans to get involved in the sports industry.
Interestingly, Denise Barrett-Baxendale, Everton’s chief executive, was reported in January 2020 saying that in an “ideal world”, the club wouldn’t choose a betting company as its sponsor after cutting ties with Sportpesa. According to Barret-Baxendale, the club’s decision to go back on this statement wasn’t an easy one. Nevertheless, it’s expected that the new sponsor, Stake, will be at the heart of many positive improvements both on and off the pitch. It’ll also help Everton deliver on its commercial plans this year.
Everton’s chief executive praised the betting company’s ambition to penetrate English football. Professor Barrett-Baxendale stated that the club is excited to play a role in Stake’s growth strategies. The company and the club have already joined hands in working out some promotional and fun activities that should get all Everton fans excited.
Everton is expected to generate more than GBP£10 million or USD$11.9 million every season. This is a step up from the previous sponsorship, making it the club’s record-breaking sponsorship deal.
How does Stake.com benefit? The agreement allows the sponsor to print its logo on the men’s and women’s shirts. Also, as part of the advertisement, the logo will appear on Everton’s digital platforms, media backdrops, and in-field screens at both Goodison Park and Finch Farm.
Stake’s main objective is to increase its global outreach, and the Everton deal will enhance that project. According to Daily Mail, the Premier League attracts over 3.2 billion viewers worldwide, making it a great advertisement platform for companies like Stake. In fact, the Head of Acquisition for the crypto betting giant mentioned this as one of the main reasons the company agreed to sign the deal.
Apart from the off-the-pitch adjustments, there have also been some changes on the pitch. The Premier League struggled to meet the club’s high expectations. At some point, the team managed to pick only 9 points out of a possible 60.
Among the main reasons Everton had a nightmare of a season was injuries to some of the club’s best players. Dominic Calvert Lewin, Richarlison, Yerri Mina, and Andre Gomez all struggled with injuries when the team needed them the most. Of course, it’s never easy when your best players are injured during the season, but it’s even worse when your star man moves to another club at the beginning of the expected “bounce-back” season.
With Richarlison moving to Tottenham, the Toffees have been in the market to find a replacement and strengthen other areas of the squad. As far as the attack is concerned, Everton has secured the services of Neal Maupay, an experienced center forward from Brighton. Dwight McNeil, a left winger from Burnley, is another much-needed addition to the attack that struggled for goals last season.
Another reason Everton found itself in a relegation battle was its leaky defense. The Toffees had the 5th worst defense in the 2021/22 season, conceding 66 goals, contributing to its negative goal difference. It’s, therefore, understandable why this third of the pitch has been Frank Lampard’s main concern in the transfer market.
Among the significant additions to Everton’s defense is the ex-Burnley defender, James Tarkowski. Given the current financial situation at the club, signing the 29-year-old on a free transfer is probably one of the best businesses of the entire window. Conor Coady and Ruben Vinagre are other new names added to Toffees’ defensive line.
Everton has also struggled to match its opponents at the center of the pitch. Many fans have complained about the midfield set-up, but new blood in that area may also help. According to reports, Idrissa Gueye (former Evertonian) is expected to sign for the Blues on the deadline day. This will be a welcome addition to Frank Lampard’s list of defensive midfielders.
As mentioned earlier, the biggest loss for Frank Lampard this summer is Richarlison. Other notable names that won’t be in Everton’s squad list for the 2022/23 season include:
The results so far
It’s still early in the season, but it seems things aren’t yet going as planned at Goodison Park. The Toffees have only picked up 3 points out of the possible 15 so far. A 1-0 loss to Chelsea in the season opener followed by another defeat to Aston Villa set the tone for one of the worst starts to the Premier League.
Everton fans have seen their team register a draw in three back-to-back matches. The frustrating part is that the Toffees led at halftime in the last two matches. Anthony Gordon was on target in both of those games, and that’s the news every Everton fan loves to hear. Chelsea was willing to pay GBP£60 million for the winger in the summer and that would have been a huge blow to this Everton side that’s still struggling to score goals.
The positives and the expected improvements
Even with the new signings, Frank Lampard still has a massive task on his hands to stabilize the ship. Although the results haven’t necessarily gone Everton’s way this season, there are still some positives that can be picked from the first Premier League games.
One area that has improved is the defense. According to Everton’s 2021/22 season statistics, the Toffees conceded 66 goals, an average of 1.74 goals per match. To put that into context, the team shipped in 10 goals in the last 3 matches of the season. This campaign, however, has been different with the team conceding 6 goals in the first 5 matches, an average of 1.2 goals per match.
However, the forwards haven’t clicked, and the attack still needs some work to improve the 0.8-goal-per-match score rate. Of course, Gordon’s performance so far has been outstanding, and it’s every Everton fan’s hope that the rest of the team will match those levels sooner rather than later.
The midfield plays a crucial part in any football game, and that’s something that’s been evident in Everton’s matches. Many fans have been calling for a system change in the middle of the park. The 3-4-3 formation has proven unfruitful, with the Toffees being outrun in the first 4 matches. Frank Lampard shifted to a 4-3-3 system against Leeds United, which meant Everton would have three midfielders. Inasmuch as Leeds still commanded the midfield, there was a notable difference.
Frank Lampard was appointed manager of Everton in the middle of last season. His main task is stabilizing the ship and ensuring that Everton returned to its winning ways. So far, there have been glimpses of the manager’s tactics, but the results haven’t necessarily matched expectations.
Despite Everton’s woes, Sergio Aguero believes that the team will still manage to return to its glory days under Frank Lampard. Of course, the former Chelsea manager has a lot to figure out this season. Perhaps a change of system in the match against Leeds was a sign of new things to come.
Conor Coady and Tarkowski have jelled into the system seamlessly. It’s every Everton fan’s prayer that the other new signings will also follow suit. If everything goes as expected, then Sergio Aguero’s predictions are likely to come true. It’s worth noting, though, that the Premier League is always tricky, and it’s even tougher this season.
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