Everton v Leicester City

A stress free week and a half has passed since Everton last kicked a ball but unfortunately for some… they are back.

It is safe to say the Blues are in a rut, winless in seven and the stench of relegation is getting stronger.

Despite looking comfortable in ninth, only six points separate the Toffees from Southampton, who are 18th.

The Foxes have transformed since Claude Puel replaced now Everton coach Craig Shakespeare in the King Power Stadium hot seat.

His reign kicked off with a 2-0 win over Everton and they’ve gone on from there sitting in seventh, six points better off than their opponents on Wednesday night.

They have well and truly shaken off any relegation worries they may have had earlier in the campaign.

Leicester are in a fine vein of form. Since their 2-1 loss at the hands of Liverpool on December 30 they are unbeaten in six, winning four and Puel’s side have only conceded one goal in that period.

The last five clashes between the two at Goodison have resulted in two wins for Everton, two Leicester triumphs and a draw.

One to watch –

Riyad Mahrez has had an indifferent spell of form since he lifted the Premier League trophy aloft in 2016, but since Puel took over the Algerian winger has come back to his eye catching best.

He has nine goals and nine assists this campaign and against a shaky Everton backline he will fancy his chances of improving that record.

Team news –

The big news comes from the home side.

After a long and painful 10 months on the sidelines, Séamus Coleman has been included in the first team squad and, according to Sam Allardyce, the Republic of Ireland skipper is ready to slot straight in.

Leighton Baines is still missing and with no new left back so far in the transfer window, Luke Garbutt has been included in the match day squad and could be given his chance.

Ramiro Funes Mori has begun light training but this one will come too soon for the Argentine.

The visitors are without Wes Morgan, their skipper is still recovering from a hamstring injury. Other than that Puel has everyone at his disposal.

Man in the middle –

Chris Kavanagh will take charge of the whistle. He has shown 61 yellow cards and one red in the 19 games he has officiated this season.


Up the Toffees.

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