Everton Now Have Balance And Added Quality To Push Top Six

Everton enjoyed an impressive start to their Premier League season as they secured their first league win over Tottenham Hotspur since 2012.

The 1-0 win over Spurs (BBC Match Report) was the first time the Toffees support could see their new look side with James Rodriguez, Allan and Abdoulaye Doucoure all in action.

I am in no doubt that that Blue-noses would’ve been extremely happy with what they saw!

Too many times last term; Everton’s midfield was overrun, out worked and didn’t have the creativity needed to really open up tough encounters.

Being a world class coach that sort of failing in his squad wouldn’t go unnoticed by Toffees boss Carlo Ancelotti.

That’s why the Italian brought in these particular three stars during this offseason.

All three played yesterday as if they had always been wearing Everton Blue.

The Goodison Park side have missed a top class ball winning midfielder since they sold Idrissa Gueye to PSG last summer. Allan came in against Tottenham and showed he’s got the ideal skill-set to come in and protect his team’s defence.

As well as making plenty of challenges (winning 4 out of 8) and interceptions (2), The Brazilian also completed 46 passes (Stats from Whoscored).

His debut performance saw him awarded the man of the match award by Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville and had Blues legend Peter Reid gushing on twitter:

Ancelotti worked with Allan during his stint as Napoli boss and you can see why he was so desperate to work with him again. At no point did Allan look flustered or even as though he was playing at his peak!

Abdoulaye Doucoure completed his switch from Watford a week ago (Source Evertonfc.com) and he too fitted into his new team seamlessly.

The twenty-seven year old is clearly used to the English game and his work ethic on the pitch was never questioned as he covered every blade of grass and pressed whenever possible. He was diligent in covering the right side of midfield and was disciplined too (winning 2 tackles and making 2 interceptions).

In the right games, I am pretty sure we’ll see Doucoure making lots of intelligent runs into the box and getting on the end of chances. He is the dynamic midfielder that will link the engine room with the final third.

If Allan, Doucoure and Andre Gomes gave Everton a strong midfield foundation to build upon, then the inclusion of attacking threat James Rodriguez offered a new creative force to the mix.

The Colombian star was played further forward on the right side of The Toffees frontline but that didn’t mean that James didn’t work hard for his teammates. No player made more interceptions than Rodriguez, who completed three. 

Importantly he also added guile into the Everton team. Another new boy that didn’t seem to feel any pressure when he was on the ball. His glorious cross field passes had Blue-noses falling in love with him instantaneously!

The former Real Madrid man made forty-seven accurate passes and created five chances for his fellow forwards. I am certain that Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison will thrive once Rodriguez truly gets his eye in for key passes and when they fully understand what he’s capable of.

People might ask if he’s going to be quick enough but his game intelligence is super and that alone will have him a cut above most opponents as he can see things unfolding before they do so!

Carlo Ancelotti was certainly impressed by how quick James Rodriguez has come in and settled into the Everton way:

“He did four days of training and his performance was outstanding. This is what he can do on the pitch.”

Ancelotti Via Liverpool Echo

It might only be the start for Everton’s new boys but what a start it was. They looked a different team than the one that limped over the line last term and that’s mainly down to the three new signings.

Allan, Doucoure and Rodriguez gave Everton more bite, energy and quality on the the pitch and those improved traits could secure The Toffees a famous season if they can consistently find their top form!

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