Crystal Palace v Everton: match preview

These sides’ miserable starts have cost them managers, though, while Everton still wait to make a permanent appointment, they are in better shape now than they were a few weeks ago. The visitors ended an eight-match winless run just before the international break and have reintegrated Morgan Schneiderlin and Kevin Mirallas to their squad. Crystal Palace’s entire points tally for the season to date has been gleaned from their last two home fixtures, and Christian Benteke is fit again. Both teams will consider this an opportunity to maintain the recovery. Dominic Fifield Kick-off Saturday 3pm Continue reading...

Premier League health check: the overachievers and underperformers | Paul Wilson

The table doesn’t lie but teams such as Burnley and Brighton are exceeding all expectations while Swansea and Everton have disappointed badly. Here’s how the 20 sides rank based on early-season health and vigourThey say the league table never lies, and this is of course true. What they don’t tell you is that during the dog days of an international break, when nothing falls or rises and hopes and fears are put on temporary hold, the narrative becomes a bit less compelling. You get sick of looking at the same thing, in other words, although Burnley, Brighton, Watford and Huddersfield will probably never tire of waiting for winter and the real meat of the season from a position in the top half of the table. As far as the first third of the season goes, some of those clubs are among the big winners, simply for delighting their fans Continue reading "Premier League health check: the overachievers and underperformers | Paul Wilson"

Premier League health check: the overachievers and underperformers | Paul Wilson

The table doesn’t lie but teams such as Burnley and Brighton are exceeding all expectations while Swansea and Everton have disappointed badly. Here’s how the 20 sides rank based on early-season health and vigourThey say the league table never lies, and this is of course true. What they don’t tell you is that during the dog days of an international break, when nothing falls or rises and hopes and fears are put on temporary hold, the narrative becomes a bit less compelling. You get sick of looking at the same thing, in other words, although Burnley, Brighton, Watford and Huddersfield will probably never tire of waiting for winter and the real meat of the season from a position in the top half of the table. As far as the first third of the season goes, some of those clubs are among the big winners, simply for delighting their fans Continue reading "Premier League health check: the overachievers and underperformers | Paul Wilson"

If the Premier League is so strong, why are the promoted sides doing so well? | Paul Wilson

Brighton, Huddersfield and Newcastle are surpassing expectations and are showing clubs such as Everton and West Ham how it should be done When Pep Guardiola suggested an English team could win the Champions League the other day he was asked if he did not consider the intensity of the Premier League a potential problem. Intensity being the word normally used to promote the idea that the English league is somehow tougher and more demanding than other leagues around Europe, with more competitive fixtures each weekend and a festive programme that usually sets out to be as gruelling as possible when other countries’ footballers are quite sensibly having a rest. “No,” Guardiola said. “I don’t believe in that. I think the best team will win; it’s nothing to do with intensity.” Continue reading...

Football transfer rumours: Everton to lure Diego Simeone from Atlético Madrid?

Today’s fluff is dampEverton have stepped up their search for a new manager. Sean Dyche may offer promise, Sam Allardyce guarantees. But only Diego Simeone brings international glamour. Title-winning coaches from La Liga have done reasonably well on Merseyside in the past, so this could work, you know. And the prospect of a Merseyside derby with Simeone and Jürgen Klopp on a rolling boil in the dugouts? Yes please! Related: Kevin Mirallas apologises for behaviour after Everton training session walkout Continue reading...

Kevin Mirallas apologises for behaviour after Everton training session walkout

• Striker and Morgan Schneiderlin left out of Everton squad to face Watford
• Pair were involved in an incident at the club’s Finch Farm training groundKevin Mirallas has apologised on social media for his behaviour at an Everton training session last week. The 30-year-old striker and Morgan Schneiderlin were left out of the Everton squad for Sunday’s 3-2 win over Watford after an incident at the club’s Finch Farm complex the previous day. Continue reading...