7 days after disposing the current Champions, Everton hope to continue their rich vein of form with a visit to South Wales to play Swansea.
Similar to the Blues, Swansea have had a good start to the season. Their last home game they turned United over and have played some very good football this term.
Swansea are led by Garry Monk, a former captain during Martinez’s reign as manager and he has taken the club from the brink of relegation to top 7 challengers in just 19 months. He has proved himself to be a modern and forward thinking manager and that translates to his philosophy on the pitch. His teams are tidy in possession but look to counter with pace and in numbers. Very similar to the Blues in every sense. They have added quality in the past three transfer windows with purchases such as Gomis, Montero, Cork, Sigurosson and Ayew. Individually they all have the capacity to cause us problems but one player who I believe is a real danger-man is Sigurosson. He is that magical No.10 that everyone deems so important in today’s game. He plays in the hole just behind Gomis and makes the Swans tick. He is a massively important player and need to shut him down early.
We need to start the game with a similar tempo to the one we started with last week. We need to put them on the back foot from the first whistle. However I think the first quarter of the game could be quite cagey as both teams like to sit deep and counter with pace. So I think it might be a matter of who shows their hand first.
We have injury concerns over Coleman and Besic. Coleman is rated ‘hopeful’ by Martinez and is the only position we don’t have adequate cover for. Last week Stones went from centre back to right back when he went off. But for me I wouldn’t want to break up his partnership with Jags. For the game I’d look to start Browning there. He came on in that position last year at Old Trafford and Anfield and acquitted himself brilliantly. He could just be the character to stop Montero who will look to hit the bye-line and deliver balls into the box. If we can stop Montero and Sigurosson from providing ammunition for Ayew and Gomis we should have a good platform to build counters from.
Naismith should come straight into the team following his hatrick against Chelsea last week. Other than that i think we’ll be unchanged.
Our record against Swansea is decent to say the least, with the Swans never beating us. They have lost the last 9 out of 11 games in September too. Lets hope that continues come Saturday evening!
Probable line up: Howard, Browning, Jagielka, Stones, Galloway, Barry, McCarthy, Barkley, Kone, Naismith, Lukakau
Prediction: Swansea 1 Everton 2
Come on you Blues!