Nothing will be decided by next Friday but two significant things will have happened.
The transfer window of doom will be closed for a start with Matheus Nunes (and possibly other key players) either still at the club or sold.
On the other side of that, Wolves will either have done nothing or something to help Gary O’Neil make a decent fist of things.
I think we need more experience and physicality at both ends of the pitch. A centre half and a centre forward would do just fine for me. Wishful thinking?
Before any of that, there’s the small matter of a game against the only team in the Premier League suffering more than us. We dare not lose.
I didn’t see their game against Villa but from everything I’ve read, it was a massacre from start to finish. To compound matters for Sean Dyche, both Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Alex Iwobi went off injured and have been ruled out of tomorrow’s game.
That’s good news for us but bad for an Everton side yet to score a goal in their opening two matches. They did have one harshly ruled out against Fulham on the opening weekend and were unlucky to lose that match on the balance of play.
In a bid to bolster their attack, they have added young Sporting Lisbon striker Youssef Chermiti and fellow forwards Arnaut Danjuma and Jack Harrison, but the latter is still some way off returning from injury.
Che Adams is another player they’re close to signing despite well-documented financial issues. Like us, what they do between now and the end of the window may tip the scales one way or the other.
Given everything that’s going on at the club and their form in recent seasons, it would be some achievement if Dyche was again able to keep them afloat.
I’m just going to say it – I think Matheus Nunes deliberately got himself sent off against Brighton. He was already on a yellow and knew what the outcome of those late handbags would be and even had a couple of bites. If it wasn’t deliberate, it was idiotic, which is only marginally more forgivable.
Gary O’Neil played a back three a few times at Bournemouth so there might be temptation to fill the void by bringing Toti into the side. If he wanted a like-for-like replacement for Nunes, I guess Sarabia would be the closest match.
I’d try Matt Doherty at left-back, I’d play Neto down the left and I’d be trying to squeeze what I could get out of Sasa Kaladzik. We need players that are effective in the penalty area.
Whatever he does, this is a good test of O’Neil’s tactical acumen and it will be interesting to see if he’s more pragmatic in his approach or continues to play aggressively. I hope it’s the latter, but whatever gets the job done.
For the second week running, nobody got the scoreline correct but then again, a 4-1 home defeat is a bold forecast.
Well done to AgentCyan, Ash K, PeteRobbo, Sheffieldwolf, Wokywolf and t’OM who’ve got the outcome of both games correct. The question is, will they all go for a third straight defeat?
I myself am going for a draw. We’ve looked a better side than Everton over the two games each side has played so far, but I do worry about our ability to navigate this particular challenge. It’s going to be a hot atmosphere, even this early in the season. Both teams know what it means. 1-1.
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Up The Wolves!