Everton putting their early season Blues behind them
Posted 22nd December 2010
This week Everton gave the clearest indication yet that they are ready to put their poor start to the season firmly behind them and start looking up, rather than down the league. Despite a number of impressive performances before Monday's fixture against a previously rampant Manchester City outfit, including a 2-0 home win against local rivals Liverpool and draws against both Manchester United and Chelsea, manager David Moyes believes that it is their most recent victory, earned on a frosty night at Eastlands, that will act as the catalyst to kick-start their season.
Following an injury-plagued 2009-10 Premier League campaign, during which they still managed to finish in an impressive eighth place, much was expected from the Toffees this time out. But early season optimism soon turned sour following a return of just three points from their opening six games, before a spirited display at St. Andrew's earned them their first win of the campaign. However, by then it was October, and any dreams of clinching a European spot had all but evaporated and the football betting tips reflected this.
But with the Premier League unfolding as it has - with just eleven points separating Wigan, who occupy the last relegation spot, and Spurs, currently residing in fifth - it seems that any team is still in with a shot of upsetting the natural order of things and competing with the continent's finest next season. Everton certainly have the personnel at their disposal to mount a charge up the table, and all season pundits have been asking themselves when, rather than if, they will sort their form out and put a run together, something the football odds indicate they can do.
At the back, the excellent Tim Howard is shielded by a solid back four which boasts the international pedigree of both Baines and Jagielka, while Sylvain Distin is making many wonder why Man City chose to spend over £20m on Joleon Lescott who he has replaced so effectively and at a fraction of the price.
Their midfield already boasts the talents of Cahill, Rodwell and Arteta – all recently linked with moves to seemingly greener pastures, but whose loyalty remains admirable - and were Moyes able to secure the services of a top-drawer marksman at the necessary knockdown price in January, then my advice would be "watch this space" for the remainder of the season.