Carlo Ancelotti’s Goodison Park tenure has begun on strong foundations, but the Italian must still improve one key area if he is to ever guide Everton to our first silverware since 1995.
It has been 24 years, six months and eight days since an Everton player last lifted a senior trophy, when Joe Royle’s Blues beat Blackburn Rovers 1-0 to win the 1995 FA Charity Shield having secured our place with victory in the FA Cup earlier that year.
The Toffees have won five FA Cups and nine top-flight titles over the years, but Ancelotti has his work cut out if he is to ever bring a Premier League honour to Goodison Park given we have taken less than half as many points as Liverpool have across the 2019/20 campaign.
Much of that record is down to the days Marco Silva oversaw before being fired in December, with Ancelotti boasting five wins in eight top-flight matches on route to 17 points – only Liverpool (27) have claimed more in the same period.
Ancelotti’s run was not without fault or challenge, though, as Burnley were resolute in defence during our 1-0 win, Brighton stifled much of our dominance in January, West Ham left us struggling to create clear chances and Newcastle were able to salvage a draw in stoppage-time after a horrific late collapse.
Since then, we have won two in a row with three goals scored in each tie – a 3-2 comeback win at Watford and a 3-1 triumph at home to Crystal Palace. However, individual errors remain in the first-team that Ancelotti has to stamp out sooner rather than later.
Will Ancelotti guide the Blues to silverware?
Per stats shared by The Other 14 – an account which focuses on clubs outside of the established top-six – no Everton player breaks into the top 20 for Premier League players, that have featured for a sufficient amount, who have lost possession the least times per 90 minutes.
Newcastle centre-half Jamaal Lascelles tops the rankings having lost possession just 5.48 times per 90 minutes, while Bournemouth defender Nathan Ake is the only other top-flight player outside of the top-six to have lost possession under 6.0 times per 90.
Staggeringly, despite their struggles in the Premier League this season, each of the bottom three clubs (Norwich City, Watford and West Ham) are well represented in the top 20 with three players each in Teemu Pukki (6.51), Ben Godfrey (6.55), Alexander Tettey (7.63) for the Canaries, Craig Cathcart (6.82), Christian Kabasele (7.99) and Craig Dawson (8.19) for the Hornets plus Issa Diop (7.47), Declan Rice (8.00) and Angelo Ogbonna (8.10) for the Hammers.
Fellow relegation-threated side Aston Villa have two in the T20 and are joined by Leicester City’s Jamie Vardy, Caglar Soyuncu, Crystal Palace’s Garry Cahill, James Tomkins, Sheffield United’s John Egan, Wolves’ Conor Coady and Newcastle’s Jetro Willems.
In other Everton news, the club have been backed to make a “good acquisition” by landing a €20m rumoured target.