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Confirmed Everton Team vs Chelsea


Ronald Koeman

Confirmed Everton team vs Chelsea;

Stekelenburg, Oviedo, Jagielka (C), Willians, Funes Mori, Coleman, Barry, Cleverley, Barkley, Bolasie, Lukaku

Subs: Joel, Deulofeu, Lennon, Valencia, Davies, Holgate

? | Team news is in! Here's our XI and subs to face @ChelseaFC! #EFCawayday

— Everton (@Everton) November 5, 2016

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Koeman: Improving on last season wasn’t so difficult


Ronald Koeman

Ronald Koeman is happy with the improvement of Everton’s defending of set plays.

Koeman: “It was a big issue to change this, to have better defending and also better offensively set plays.

“They conceded 14 goals out of set plays last season. That’s crazy.

“We showed clips from last season and did a different organisation. We are giving more attention to set plays, at least twice a week. This morning we did a meeting about Chelsea only about set plays.

“The players need to be involved. They need to talk among themselves about the best ways to defend them.

“You can win or lose out of a corner or free-kick. I’m really happy now, but we need to continue. Maybe if you concede a lot of goals you are a little bit afraid to get corner kicks given against.

“It’s good to hear we’re doing better than last season – but that wasn’t so difficult.”

The post Koeman: Improving on last season wasn’t so difficult appeared first on GrandOldTeam.

Injury Update vs Chelsea


Leighton Baines

Ronald Koeman has provided an injury update ahead of Everton’s upcoming fixture with Chelsea.

Koeman: “Maarten Stekelenburg is back. He’s ready and fit to play.

“[Leighton] Baines not, he’s close to be back but ok, we don’t take any risk because after the weekend we have the international break and then if everything goes well he will be back after the international break.”

Earlier, despite his international call up – Koeman had also insisted James McCarthy was “not fit” and admitted his side will miss Idrissa Gueye who is suspended for the game.

“Of course it’s always a miss because the boy has really a lot of energy and wins a lot of balls in midfield but ok, it’s not about one player. Our squad is strong enough, we have enough choices to who will replace Gana at the weekend”

The post Injury Update vs Chelsea appeared first on GrandOldTeam.

Koeman: “The player is not fit”


Everton v Crystal Palace - Premier League

Ronald Koeman has advised James McCarthy to withdraw from the Republic of Ireland squad for the upcoming 2018 World Cup qualifier against Austria.

Despite missing Everton’s previous six games due to a groin injury, McCarthy started both 2018 World Cup qualifiers against Georgia and Moldova, playing the full 90 minutes and 81 minutes respectively and his involvement led Koeman to claim the midfielder was ‘massively overloaded‘ before accusing Republic of Ireland manager of ‘killing the player’.

McCarthy is currently sidelined with a hamstring injury sustained in training but, despite managing just 57 minutes for Everton since the last international break, he has been included in the Ireland squad for the trip to Vienna on Saturday week.

Koeman, however, insists the player is not fit and has urged him to remain in England and work on his fitness rather than travel to Austria with Ireland.

Koeman: “The player is not fit. The player is not involved in team sessions. I think to have a call-up he needs to be close to be fit but it’s a little bit of the same story to what happend last time, we spoke to James – my advice to James is stay here and train and be fit as soon as possible but the final decision is by the player.

On being asked if Koeman had spoke with the Republic of Ireland manager, Koeman said: “No it’s not necessary because we have contact between medical staff and if the managers don’t take the right decision maybe he could take the good advice of the medical staff”

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Chelsea vs Everton




We knew you had it in you, Everton. The flames of dissent were dimmed for the week and the right team took to the park and did mostly what was required. It won’t ever stop the groundswell of previous seasons discontent but you pointed the pointy end in the right direction and pulled the trigger. When you didn’t see the match first hand you rely on the many words bandied about after and it can be difficult to grasp the meaning in the grand scheme of things. We know that, in this day and age, even most facts and opinions can be as polarising as a U.S Presidential Election; and the ability to take the current temperature of the team and to judge it before and against is the best we can do to understand where we are. Where we are going. Do you subscribe to style over substance? Is it even something you can teach? Every Evertonian has a basic understanding of the very laws of footballing nature and where we sit in any given mix is often viewed collectively and with a fair amount of context.


When everyone does their thing and that thing includes beating West Ham with two and not conceding three it’s a good day. It’s par for the course so pipe right back down Hammers. Your new gaff is going to look ace in the Championship. Two don’t make a team but if they’re Rom and Ross heading into the latter part of 2016 then history should tell you it was probably the start of something beautiful. If anyone hasn’t watched yet then do yourself a favour and click that. If you’re like me you’ll remember every single one of them and reaffirm to yourself what a talent we have and who we pinched him from. He’s said some nice things about us and Ross this week too, probably to balance the inevitable International Break want-a-way sound bite. Man of the Matchley had a much better game this time round, influencing proceedings as we have so oft willed him to do. It’s still a work in progress, a penciling in edging closer to confirmation, but we can now see the parts of his game coming together like Voltron with Slash playing the backing track.


Ronald Koeman, with the kind of face you’d spend billions of pounds racing Russia to get to first, has his fledgling Everton side on 18 competitive points from a possible 30. It sits right up there with even the most competent of the first 10 games in our history although using 3 points for a win we’d be on 25 points in 69/70. That’s the limit of my research on that, so It’s nothing to be sneezed at as the last couple of seasons have shown; and continuing the current trajectory will have us biting at the heels of the more expensive squads heading to Europe the following year. Too soon? The Footballing Fathers of Form can be equally as Fickle as Fortuitous so we’ll now see where we’ve Fallen to at Festivus and and meet back here then.


But ahoy Captain, thar blows another of the behemoths of the deep, closing in, over yonder and yet in our path. Chelsea, the KFC of modern football, all legs and breasts yet with tiny meaningless historical wings are next up. Roman Abramovich FC are the archetypal modern success story, in the right place at the right time. United in the day had some brilliant kids, a shrewd Boss and quality additions but Chelsea were created right out the box. A modern myth branded and packaged for the masses, sold to the international generation of consumers to google on their smart phones and bleat about on the interwebs. Their lack of European Football this season has surely hurt their pride, currently are on a four game winning run and out to humiliate. Out of the Cup and with only two trophies left to play for the pressure is on them to produce something this year other than a tremendous amount of wages.


Antonio Conte, Jan Michael Vincents half brother and co-pilot of Airwolf in his spare time has taken up the Special ones reigns and had the stones to switch to a 3-5-1 after back to back defeats. Known for his direct play and minimalist, hardline approach, a Spaghetti Ferguson; this will be a tough game. The cavalcade of handsomely paid World Class Super Villains at his disposal will be as fresh as us and looking to trade blows, while we look to leave them smarting and fist waving as we hope to be the Penelope Pitstop to their [Poor language removed] Dastardly.


In goal should see the giant Belgian, a head like it was drawn by Chuck Jones for a 1957 Pepe Le Pew cartoon and is he playing well? Probably. Defence should see a continuation of three at the back with Azpilecueta, Cahill and Luiz providing the comedy, midfield of Kante, Moses, maybe new sensation Alonso and Matic, with the tiny Belgian Hazard, Pedro and Costa forming the attack. You could also see Willian or Oscar in for Alonso, and John Terry most likely sulking on the bench. Fabregas? Has he still a footballing pulse?


Sergio Leonie couldn’t have dreamed up a better foe than Diego Costa. He sits atop the scorers charts and is probably the biggest snide bar Suarez in World Football and I could actually see him wearing a black cape around his house and peering over it with crazy eyes taking selfies in the mirror. Whatever Boo’s we’ve been banking it’s time to make a withdrawal. There’s more passion on his face than after an evening with Nacho Vidal so the defence better be on alert.

Eden Hazard is back in Oscar contention after a shocking season fluffing his lines and it was to be expected when your name is just a giant oxymoron. He’ll need to be watched closely as he’s making things happen again and I hope somebody wears the shorts with the big pockets to keep him in.

The ghost of Victor Moses continues to haunt football pitches up and down the Country and recent sightings have speculated he is actually taking human shape. Not unlike Cirque De Soleil in the nineties. To be seen to be believed.

John Obi Mikel actually still plays for Chelsea.

Lukaku Lite Batsushayi is not worth a paragraph let alone a sentence, or even correct spelling for that matter. Did he mug us off? Were we ‘in’ for him? No? Okay.

Everton then. They pick themselves nowadays but the one name rubbed off the whiteboard this week is probably the most difficult to replace. If there was one name you’d have suggested be irreplaceable 10 games in you’d say Lukaku, and you’d be right, but up there elbowing him for space in the current hearts of Evertonians is our very own Idrissa Gana Gueye. Spotted by @Zatarain 2006 on the Sun Hewn desert pitches of Saly in Senegal kicking a makeshift ball made of stuck together Arsenal shirts and ferociously shepherding satanically possessed Lllamas into touch he was first plying his trade for Diambars until he was sent to Lille and then to Aston Villa. After that purgatory and with time off for good behavior he’s ours and he has finally made a name for himself at the ripe young age of 27. He is though, through the fault of every Referee who carded him now suspended and needs replacing. Cleverley? Gibber? Is McCarthy fit? You know it will probably be the former. Should Davies be thrown into deep end of the baths in among the Pool Bullies to float for himself? A false move in the Premiership gunfight can tend to leave a player scarred for eternity and Koeman has momentum to build. I’ll leave it up to you to discuss, but therein lies this vaguely worded set up.

We always give them a good go, and I have tried to again here despite one hell of a shadow, so up and at them, Everton.

Toe to toe.

The post Chelsea vs Everton appeared first on GrandOldTeam.

Lukaku on transfer talk and Ross Barkley



Romelu Lukaku has downplayed transfer speculation and reckons Everton have done great work with him.

Ahead of a return to Chelsea and talks of a new contract for Lukaku at Everton, Lukaku stressed his agent, Mino Raiola is ‘looking after all that stuff’ – and the Belgium international has no cause for regret that he never ended up returning to Stamford Bridge.


“If clubs are interested in you, it is a compliment to the club you are playing for.

“It means that Everton have done great work with me. It is just a normal game.

“We are just going to try and go there and give our best. We will see what happens.

“I want to win the game. I want to be a part of a team that is going to be successful and that is what we are trying here.

“I’m just trying to help my team as much as I can. There are going to be ups and downs sometimes but at the moment I think I am doing really well.”

Lukaku also reckons Ross Barkley has the potential to be the best player in English football.

“At the minute, the players who play in his position – like Dele Alli and Wayne Rooney – they have got goals in them,’ said Lukaku.

Barkley vs Arsenal

“I think Ross has to get more goals and more assists than he has been doing. If he does that, then he is going to play.

“If Ross fulfils his potential, you are talking about the best player in English football. He has got everything.

“He can got power, he has got technique; he can shoot with both feet. He is fast, he can pick a pass. The manager has been working with him so he makes the right decisions on the pitch.”

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[WATCH] Romelu Lukaku’s 50 league goals for Everton.


Deulofeu: "Rom is an animal! I want him to score a lot of goals this season,”

Romelu Lukaku netted the opener in Sunday’s 2-0 win over West Ham to take his tally to 50 for the Blues in the Premier League.

Only Duncan Ferguson, with 60, and Tim Cahill, with 56, have scored more Premier League goals for Everton than the Belgium international.

A twitter account has tweeted a video containing all 50 of his league goals for Everton – enjoy!

Romelu Lukaku's 50 league goals for Everton. Well in lad @RomeluLukaku9 #EFC

— Everton Pictures (@evertonfcpics) October 31, 2016

Good win today! Happy to have scored my 50th in the PL for @everton and 100th in the league 33 in ?? 67 ??

— R.Lukaku Bolingoli10 (@RomeluLukaku9) October 30, 2016

The post [WATCH] Romelu Lukaku’s 50 league goals for Everton. appeared first on GrandOldTeam.

Barkley “I came through a difficult spell”



Ross Barkley reckons he has come through a difficult spell after his man-of-the-match performance in Everton’s 2-0 victory over West Ham.

“It meant a lot to me [His goal]” Barkley told Sky Sports.

“I haven’t scored for a few games now.

“I came through a difficult spell. I’ve just been working hard and today it paid off.”

The post Barkley “I came through a difficult spell” appeared first on GrandOldTeam.

Koeman on Barkley



Ronald Koeman has praised Ross Barkley’s work-rate during Everton’s 2-0 win over West Ham.

Koeman: “It was one of his best (performances) of this season. I think he was working hard, he was tackling, offensively he was important in the game.

“The West Ham goalkeeper Adrian made an incredible save in the first half and he scored the second goal.“He was really the player between the defence and the front to create and that is what you like to see.

“That’s what you need to do and then, normally, these kind of players, with the individual qualities that they have, they make the difference.”

“It was a total team performance today. Ross Barkley had more impact in the last part of our attacking, not only in scoring but he was dangerous throughout. That’s what the team needs.

“He can be very good, but it is all about knowing what you need to do. Sometimes I have to shout too much, he needs to run more.”

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Everton 2-0 West Ham



Report written by jackyboy

And just like that the “mini-blip” was over.

The Stek and Jagielka were out due to MS failing a fitness and Jagielka playing like a cabbage for a fortnight. Robles and Funes-Mori were the replacements.






West Ham





First Half

The first half was described by the arl fella next to me, as “possibly the worst half of football I’ve ever seen”. Difficult really to argue too much. West Ham started much the brighter, the mohican sporting imp that is Payet was seemingly everywhere. Ogbonna also should have done much better and we were let off the hook once more. Although the closest either side came to a goal was a fantastic tip over by the oblong headed galoot that is Adrian from a deflected Barkley shot.

Second Half

Everton seemingly woke up after half time, with Bolasie and Barkley actually realising that West Ham are last and starting to go at them. Bolasie after being called all the names under the sun by yer da, then does what he does best by setting up the “Slayer of all things Brexit” through sheer graft..Adrian could parried Coleman’s effort out and Bolasie was on hand to dig the ball across to Rom, who headed home. Barkley was really beginning to take the game to them, and put the game beyond the bubble blowing beauts by playing a 50 yard 1-2 with Lukaku before a lovely left foot low finish. Jagielka and Cleverley then came on and both did well before Lennon was brought on to add some extra legs on the break.

A welcome win at what was seemingly a hungover Goodison today.

Special mention must go to Bolasie thinking he was playing joga bonito and getting it all wrong, Ashley Williams doing his best to play Antonio in, yer da with the megaphone trying to wake people up, West Ham fans singing sign on……..

Finally anytime we beat Mark Noble is a good day in my book.

We’ll face more difficult games, and we’re nowhere near the finished article.

But unbeaten at home, 5 points off the top, 6th, 2nd best defence in the league. Things could be much worse.

Onwards and upwards blues!!

The post Everton 2-0 West Ham appeared first on GrandOldTeam.

Koeman on Rooney to Everton Talk



Ronald Koeman has responded to speculation linking Wayne Rooney with a return to Everton.

The Manchester United and England captain has been struggling for form this season and has not started a league game since September 24.

He has been linked with a move away from Old Trafford as he tries to resurrect his career.

And on being asked about speculation linking Rooney with a return to Everton, Ronald Koeman said “He is a great player and he still hasn’t finished his career. I don’t know his situation, I need to respect that. If there is a possibility of Rooney at Everton, I would be very pleased.”

#Koeman describes Wayne #Rooney as a great player and if he became an option for #Everton he would be very pleased #EFC

— BBC Merseyside Sport (@bbcmerseysport) October 28, 2016

Koeman has just opened the door for Wayne Rooney if he wants to come home.

— Tony Scott (@Tony_Scott11) October 28, 2016

Koeman: "If Wayne Rooney ever becomes an option for Everton, I would be very pleased." #EFC

— Ben Dinnery (@BenDinnery) October 28, 2016

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Evertonians Raise £2,000+ for Alder Hey



Evertonians on GrandOldTeam have surpassed our 2016 target of £1878 and now raised over £2,000 for Alder Hey.

GrandOldTeam has been online since Feb 2007. Since then, as a community we’re pretty proud to have positively impacted on a lot of lives.

Early in 2016, we began fundraising for Alder Hey Childrens Hospital with a target of £1878 and as of today Evertonians have raised £2246.63 (£1928.02+£318.61 Gift Aid) – with even Jamie Carragher chipping in to get us over the line.

A huge thank you to everyone who shared our fundraising appeal and those who chipped in.

@grandoldteam this is great news! A massive thank you to everyone! ?

— Alder Hey (@AlderHey) October 26, 2016

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