Everton vs Aston Villa – Analysis, Prediction, Team News
Saturday 25th February 2023
As part of our weekend Premier League predictions, we take a look at Aston Villa’s visit to Goodison Park. Everton have won both their home matches 1-0 under new manager Sean Dyche, could a third be in the offing? Read on with our Everton vs Aston Villa prediction.
Everton vs Aston Villa Match Preview
Everton enter the game on a run of four defeats in the last six games, though crucially, they have won their previous two at Goodison. A vital win 1-0 against fellow strugglers Leeds followed up a surprise victory by the same scoreline over league leaders Arsenal. In a crucial six-pointer, the Toffees beat Leeds thanks to a second-half goal from right-back Coleman. These two victories have made their home form look slightly better. Before these games, they had won just two from 10 at Goodison – now it is four from 12. They must continue this form.
Everton’s last four league games have each seen fewer than three goals, so the Merseyside club are not involved in thrillers, as might be expected with Sean Dyche taking over the hot seat. They are also still struggling to score, with their 17 a joint league low alongside Wolves. This statistic is why the clean sheets against Arsenal and Leeds were imperative. Everton don’t have reliable goalscorers in their team (besides maybe Calvert-Lewin, who is injury-prone), so they must keep as many clean sheets as possible to win games. They have lifted themselves out of the relegation zone for now but are still in danger of going down.
Aston Villa travel to the North-West in troubling form. Indeed, the Birmingham club have lost their last three Premier League games and have conceded at least three in all of those. A loss at the Etihad was sandwiched between defeats at home to Leicester and Arsenal. Indeed, the last game against the Gunners will have bitterly disappointed coach Unai Emery. Villa led twice, first from a counter-attack where Watkins beat Saliba and second from a beautifully worked goal in midfield where Coutinho wrong-footed Ramsdale. However, Saka and Zinchenko replied on both occasions. The Birmingham side then lost the game to two goals in injury time.
Villa’s away form could be better, too, with only three wins from eleven (though they did come in three of the last four away games). They barely laid a glove on Man City, being 3-0 down by half-time (though City can dismantle any side, in fairness). Villa travel to Goodison with those three recent away victories – against Brighton, Spurs, and Southampton – under their belt. They will hope to do well against a struggling Everton side.
Injuries and Suspensions
Might Not Play: Keane, Patterson, Onana, Garner
Will Not Play: Townsend, Calvert-Lewin
Might Not Play: Olsen
Will Not Play: Steer, Carlos
Everton vs Aston Villa Lineups (Predicted)
Everton (4-3-3): Pickford; Mykolenko, Tarkowski, Coady, Coleman; Onana, Gueye, Doucoure; McNeil, Maupay, Iwobi
Aston Villa (4-4-2 / 4-4-1-1): Martinez; Moreno, Mings, Konsa, Cash; Coutinho, Luiz, Kamara, McGinn; Buendia, Watkins
Everton vs Aston Villa Analysis
Everton Must Score More Goals
Everton obviously need to score more goals. We have already referenced that they have the lowest total in the league alongside Wolves (17). They need to create more because they lack clinical finishers. As such, they rarely score from half-chances or opportunities requiring exemplary finishing. They have expected goals of 23.8, so they are underperforming in this area. While this tally reinforces our point that they are not creating much, it does show that they should have scored a few more goals than they have.
Everton may be unable to continue keeping clean sheets at home, so to escape relegation, they must get themselves into a position where they can score two in a game. They have only managed this twice all season – against Southampton and Palace. Their thirty goals conceded is one of the better records in the bottom half; their problems indeed lie in their output in attack.
Villa Will Be Frustrated At Losing From A Winning Position Against Arsenal
Emery will be enraged that Villa conspired to lose that game against Arsenal last week. Arsenal indeed dominated the game, with almost 70 per cent possession. However, Villa will have expected that and even liked it because they are a direct team that want to concede the ball to the better teams and attack in transition. This plan worked perfectly and got them into the lead twice, but on both occasions, they let it slip before letting the stalemate out of their grasp entirely.
Emery will be concerned about this soft underbelly his team are currently showing. The game against Leicester followed a similar pattern, with Villa taking the lead twice and being pegged back both times before ultimately losing the game. Whether these two home games are just coincidences or bad days at the office remains to be seen. However, they conceded eight across these two games, and the fact is Villa have only won five of their twelve home games this season. This record needs to be better. It highlights that they have felt more comfortable away from the pressure of Villa Park in recent weeks and where they can play their counter-attack style more naturally.
This Game Might be a Battle in Midfield and in Creating Chances
Everton are nothing if not dogged at home, and many of their games at Goodison this season have been a battle. The home crowd can be both supportive and get on the team’s back. There is no doubt, however, that when the team gives the fans something to shout about, the Merseysiders are vociferous in their support. We envisage Onana, Gueye, and Doucoure being mobile in this game, using their energy and athleticism to bite and snap into tackles. It is unlikely that Kamara and Luiz in the Villa midfield will get the sort of time on the ball they would like.
Therefore, Everton must come out and show grit and determination, and they might do so. They must compensate for their relative lack of quality with effort. If they can win the ball in midfield positions, they can feed McNeil and Iwobi out wide. These two can come inside the full-backs or try to cross the ball to present Doucoure or Maupay with chances. Calvert-Lewin is a massive miss, as he often attacks crosses from the wingers and full-backs. Nevertheless, Everton must create opportunities to give themselves a chance in this match.
It is difficult to predict the pattern of play. Both teams often prefer not to have the ball, so they can win it in midfield and break into the opposition’s final third. Villa are direct, and on the occasions that the Everton midfield is trying to build play, Villa will try to win the ball themselves, feed the tricky Buendia and Watkins and ask them to attack potentially nervous Everton centre-backs. Therefore, we predict a scrappy end-to-end game. Neither team will likely have significantly superior possession, and both may make mistakes in a feisty encounter. This match will probably be a fight for supremacy. The fresh legs of Gray, Bailey or Ramsey could swing it either way.
This game is challenging to predict. Everton have consolidated a little, winning their last two home games after a run of four losses at Goodison before that. However, despite their struggles at Villa Park in recent games, Villa have won three of their last four away games (nobody can criticise a team too much for losing at the Etihad). Therefore, something may have to give in this game. Everton’s fixtures have been low-scoring, and Villa’s high; Everton do not have the tools to decimate Villa like Leicester, Man City, and Arsenal have recently.
Therefore, we see a low-scoring game which could go either way. We are still unconvinced by Everton. Furthermore, Villa pose a threat in attack. Indeed, Villa have won the previous three encounters between these teams by a combined goal difference of 6-1. We were going to call this a 2-1 away win, but we will give Everton the benefit of the doubt and say that their crowd, energy, and fight can get them a welcome and toiled-for point here.
Everton 1-1 Aston Villa
Everton vs Aston Villa Betting Tip – Draw Odds:
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