Tom Ferguson previews Everton v Hajduk Split.

It hasn’t been the prettiest, definitely not the tidiest, but boy it’s been effective.

Ronald Koeman‘s men are yet to taste defeat this season, competitive game or not.

No Evertonian will remember these clashes with great fondness but the job is getting done, time and time again.

The Blues haven’t looked great, but if they keep it up no one will bat an eyelid or care.

And winning is just what Everton want when they welcome Hajduk Split to the Grand Old Lady on Thursday evening.

Their Europa League playoff opponents finished third in the Croatian top flight last term.

Split have already played eight competitive fixtures this season, so Koeman will be aware the Croatians could be further ahead in terms of fitness.

HAJ, as they’re known, are famous for their fans’ crazy support and it’s fair to say they’ll have manic backing on Thursday.

The supporters are so well thought of at the club that they have officially retired the number 12 jersey and made the fans their ‘twelfth man’.

So a break from Premier League action after just one game, and what an important tie it is.

A two legged affair stands in the way of the Toffees and the group stages of the UEFA Europa League.

A European adventure is what everyone wants, but it’s going to be tough.

Koeman reports Sandro Ramirez has picked up a knock and is doubtful for the tie, but besides that it’s the same squad that saw off Stoke last weekend.

The battle with the Potters would’ve told Ronald much more about where his troops are at. Hopefully the lessons learnt are taken into this crucial European showdown.

Three at the back with the current crop of centre halves is not the best.

Dominic Calvert Lewin is most effective deployed as a central striker.

It’s clear too that Wayne Rooney needs to be behind the centre forward to show what he is truly capable of.

Serious thought may be given by Koeman whether to rest players for showdown with Manchester City on Monday.

Or maybe they will go full strength aiming to get a sizeable advantage going into the second leg?

Who knows? We will find out around 7.05pm on Thursday.

Come on, you Blues.

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BigBlueConk
Member

Not a bad result at all and just enough to keep the lads on their toes in the return leg.

ilikecheese
Member

What a gang of wimps.

And their football team is crap too.

marnie
Member

Torcida……… Don't make me laugh.You came to our City and we made you welcome.You then decided to be a bunch of Bells.We will go to your City and not be afraid to support our team.We will do that with 3 friends… Grace,Dignity and Respect.The 3 friends you forgot to pack when you came to ours.

chicoazul
Member
Sharpys top lip

Dont worry my dear chico….. i'm going to have a word with a few of them while im over there next week!!!!

This delights and me and worries me in equal measure Mr Top Lip.

I expect full updates sir.

Sharpys top lip
Member
chicoazul

Like we assessed before the game, you've got some very cringey supporters mate. They were all dead mental being held back by a few stewards tonight and throwing bottles at an area with kids.

Not tough, certainly not intimidating, just titheads. Much to learn but it's cute they're so desperate for validation.

Dont worry my dear chico….. i'm going to have a word with a few of them while im over there next week!!!!

wpDiscuz