Written by Rodmorg
Nearly a fortnight after the thrilling encounter of Watford at Dean Court and another poor display in the FA Cup, Bournemouth travelled up to Merseyside to meet Everton, of whom had had a dire run of form since December. The encounter is a particularly memorable one for both sets of fans; a literal final minute goal by Junior Stanislas in 2015 kick-started our first good run in the Premier League, as well as the player’s wonder-strike only a year later. The next game would only result in 9 goals. With an average of 4.14 goals per game, this fixture is the highest scoring one in the Premier League, and goals were certainly expected.
After the 6 goal entertainer, Eddie opted to have continued faith in Dan Gosling after an awful mistake which led to a goal. Nathaniel Clyne made his first Premier League appearance after signing on loan from Liverpool and Adam Smith made an earlier than expected return to Left-Back, pushing Charlie Daniels to the bench. Callum Wilson was out of the team after what Eddie described as being “an injury which isn’t serious but
The game got off to a brilliant start for the away side. The Cherries had Everton trapped in their own box. King couldn’t get enough power to poke the ball in, Brooks had a potential penalty turned down and Lerma came close from 25 yards – all within 15 minutes. Confidence was sky high and it nearly paid off, a great route-one counter started off by King gave Brooks the opportunity to poke one in from a tough angle; the ball trickled past Pickford and bounced off the post.
With the branding of ‘Angry Birds’ on the sleeves of their shirt, it was evident that the Everton players couldn’t keep their pecker up with the pressure invited. Frustrations boiled over for the home side, giving away needless fouls but Stanislas couldn’t put the ball behind from a good free kick position.
As the rain began to fall down, Everton had perhaps the best chance of the half, as Michael Keane grazing the crossbar after a corner. Half time came along with the match at a surprising 0-0 scoreline.
Half Time: Everton 0-0 AFC Bournemouth
The match resumed with Everton looking the team more likely to score. After only a few minutes into the game, Richarlison was denied the opener by an excellent block by Ake. The free-flowing display of the first half drained away as the rain did too.
A prolonged period of no clear cut chances ended with ZOUMA rising high, free as a bird, to power a header past Begovic with an hour gone. Despite taking the lead, Everton continued to show an aggressive style of play. One player in particular, Gomes, constantly argued with officials and our own team and should have been off after a caution and an aggressive foul on King.
Eddie had rolled the dice to try and spark a comeback by bringing on Lys Mousset and Jordon Ibe for Stanislas and Brooks. With full time approaching, Fraser was denied a goal by some good goalkeeping by Pickford and Gosling was denied with a great tackle by Keane. But it was Everton that grabbed the final goal the rain as CALVERT-LEWIN rolled past Begovic from 10 yards out to wrap the game up. Everton eventually came out on top in a match which should’ve seen more goals and fewer players remaining on the pitch.
Asmir Begovic – 5: Should have done better with the first goal but was good with distribution.
Nathaniel Clyne – 7: Excellent game for the new signing. Got forward well and runs were excellent and showed great crossing ability. Looks very exciting, but probably better at RB than LB.
Steve Cook – 7: A 9/10 in the first half but dwindled in the second half. Constantly rose like a salmon and made some great clearances. Interceptions were brilliant in the second half. Confidence did plummet after the first goal, however.
Nathan Ake – 4: Perhaps his worst away performance this season for a defender that is so consistent. A lack of communication with Begovic midway through the second half summed up his performance. Had trouble with bringing the ball out of defence under pressure.
Adam Smith – 6: A good comeback and well-needed for a fixture like this. Bombed forward with great pace and dribbling ability, but was quieter and less involved in the second half.
David Brooks – 8: Astronomical in the first half and was unfortunate to miss a thoroughly deserved goal but like most of the team, he lost his influence in the second half. Probably for the better that he was brought off, to keep his fitness for next week.
Dan Gosling – 6: Blatant that he is still rusty from coming back. Was not involved too much due to the dominance of Lerma but coped well thanks to his midfield partner.
Jefferson Lerma – 8 – MOTM: Showed the aggression of Harry Arter and the switch of play of Andrew Surman. Was hard to get past today and the bravery was sky-high. Surprised not to see a yellow from him but showed great composure and passing ability, especially in the first half.
Ryan Fraser – 6: Put some good balls into the box and searched for the pass instead of the shot. Seems to be better at taking corners and free kicks than Stanislas, but lost influence in the second half.
Junior Stanislas – 6: Was average throughout the game, nothing good or nothing bad. Had a decent chance to score from a free kick but was saved. Needs to improve his free-kick taking
Josh King – 5: Once again he’s proved that he is not a natural striker. Usually relies upon a feeder such as Wilson but couldn’t be his best. Seemed to improve when a like-minded individual of Wilson (Mousset) came on but was quiet throughout. Looked quite selfish on the ball too.
Lys Mousset (Junior Stanislas – 65) – 5: Couldn’t make an impact on the game and didn’t have a shot too.
Jordon Ibe (David Brooks – 85) – 5: Once again dominated and does his usual with the ball of running, stopping and losing possession. Really needs to think of his own style of play.
Overall Team Rating: 5:
A game of two halves. An excellent first half which should have seen us ahead, with high confidence and all players looking motivated. The second half seemed to have been lost after their first goal. Did have a few decent chances late late on but couldn’t snatch a draw.
6 away defeats in a row and the last away win in October, after a strong start to the season. We just simply need to start scoring again. Once again, we have lost against a team that only had 3 shots on target and produced 2 goals while we scored none with 7 shots on target produced. We aren’t clinical and the opposition is too clinical. Our philosophy of attacking football is the reason and it is beginning to be contradictory to the number of goals we score. Being open on the pitch will mean there is more goals to be scored and conceded. Fulham have a similar approach and fortunately, it is down to a better quality of players and a good start to the season as to why we aren’t in the relegation mix.
We most certainly missed Callum Wilson too. As mentioned previously, King is reliant on a “feeder” such as Wilson who can hold up play and through ball at the right moment to produce goals – it’s why he has 5 assists to his name, which is somewhat unusual of a striker. Clyne and Smith looked really bright going forward, and Clyne could potentially be a good permanent signing for us and proved he could be today. Should mention that the partnership between Gosling and Lerma still needs to be stronger. Gosling still looks rusty but looked good going forward, but Lerma was better on all fronts. It would probably be better if Surman was to play or a loan player was to come in alongside Lerma. Finally, the issue regarding Mings continues. His sudden omission from the squad after getting a decent chance to come back into the FA Cup team may mean there’s something going on we don’t know. Him not even appearing on the bench is concerning.
Overall, it was a game of two halves. Once again, it was a lack of being clinical that led to our loss, despite a dominating display in the first half, which should have seen some goals. Next up is a home match versus West Ham, who previously lost 1-2 to us thanks to Steve Cook and Callum Wilson’s goals.