Matthew Desai

Victory at Norwich a must for Everton

Carrow RoadEverton travel to Norwich City on Saturday needing to end a run of three games without victory, over a side they last lost to nearly twenty years ago, says Matthew Desai.

It’s been over two months since Norwich last recorded a league victory, but incredibly they remain fourteenth, and six points off the relegation zone, testament to the fine start they made to the season.

The Blues have taken maximum points in just one of their last five games in the Premier League, drawing three and losing the other. The two sides drew earlier in the season, and Everton will take heart from the fact that they are unbeaten in their last three trips to Carrow Road, which is reflected in the fact that the Blues are favourites to win this game :

After a week off due to the FA Cup, The Canaries’ last game was two weeks ago, where they played out a goalless draw at home to Fulham. New signing Luciano Becchio had the game’s best chance just five minutes in, but was unable to lead to his side to a much needed home win.

Everton left Boundary Park disappointed last Saturday evening after a 95th minute Oldham equaliser courtesy of Matt Smith. Jordan Obita put the hosts a goal up in the early stages, but goals either side of the break from the in-form duo Victor Anichebe and Phil Jagielka appeared to put to bed any chance of an upset. Unfortunately though, a replay beckons, as Smith rose the highest to nod The Latics level with the last kick of the match.

Norwich pair Andrew Surman (knee) and Alexander Tettey (knock) face late fitness tests ahead of the game, while Grant Holt (back) and Anthony Pilkington (hamstring) could also be recalled. Former-blue John Ruddy is still sidelined with a hip injury.

Victor Anichebe could miss out for The Toffees after he was withdrawn at half-time against Oldham, so Nikica Jelavic could start. Seamus Coleman is back in training and could sneak his way into David Moyes’ matchday squad. Tony Hibbert is still absent, but January signing John Stones is back in contention after being ineligible for last weekend’s FA Cup tie.

This is the first time this season you could argue that Everton are in a real rut. The teams around them are all in good league form, and with a tough couple of months ahead, it is absolutely paramount that The Blues start winning matches sooner rather than later, as they continue to put hope of any form of European football next season in jeopardy.

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Matthew Desai

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