On Thursday night, Everton recorded a sensational 3-2 win over Crystal Palace to preserve their Premier League status for another season. Frank Lampard’s team came back from two goals down at half-time to claim the victory courtesy of goals from Michael Keane, Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewin.
The victory was met with a giant sigh of relief and supporters celebrating on the pitch in a carnival-like atmosphere at the end of the game.
The Toffees complete their Premier League campaign with a visit to Arsenal on Sunday afternoon. However, the game now means very little to the men from Merseyside.
Just beating the drop is not good enough for Everton
For the size of the club and the money that has been invested in recent seasons, Everton should not be fighting relegation. Most expected the Toffees to be mid-table at least. However, the disastrous summer appointment of ex Liverpool head coach Rafa Benitez turned sour very quickly.
Results started going against the men from Merseyside. The two worst results of the Benitez’s reign were an embarrassing 5-2 home defeat by Watford and a 2-1 defeat at Norwich.
Staying up must be the catalyst for changing at Everton. With a relatively new director of football in Kevin Thelwell, things are likely to change off and on the field for the Toffees, but only if he is allowed to do his job.
Recruitment needs to be shrewder
During Thelwell’s time at Wolves, he helped bring in the players that helped the club to promotion. The 48-year-old played a key role in spotting players that may not have otherwise been spotted by the club.
He has a massive job to do at Everton, as the Toffees recruitment under the current regime has been truly woeful. Their poor business in the transfer market has led to their struggles on the pitch in recent seasons.
FFP will make it difficult for Everton’s recruitment team. The club’s majority shareholder needs to leave recruitment to the football people in Thelwell and Lampard.
The current squad is not good enough. The men from Merseyside have to overhaul the squad, if possible, with so many players not earning their massive wages. It will be a case of selling players before buying this summer.
While there are players that the Toffees will be glad to see the back of, some of their bigger assets may have to be sacrificed in order to rebuild. Their two biggest attacking players Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewin have long since been linked with other clubs. The former is now being linked with a move to Real Madrid.
This cannot be repeated next season
Everton has had a let-off this season and the Toffees must now make sure it doesn’t happen again next season. The managerial team now have the chance to prove that they have what it takes to be successful in the Premier League.
Questions have been asked about Lampard’s ability as a top-flight coach. The former Chelsea head coach can answer his critics by making next season a far better one for Everton.
In truth, Everton cannot afford another season like the current one, as it is simply not good enough. They need a fresh approach this summer and hopefully for those long-suffering Evertonian’s next season brings them slightly more enjoyment.
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Will Everton be able to overhaul their squad in the summer?