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Burnley 1-1 Everton | Match Report By Sam Quine

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Everton and Burnley played out a 1-1 stalemate at Turf Moor earlier today which is a result that will fail to satisfy both Sean Dyche and Carlo Ancelotti as both teams had multiple opportunities to take all three points.

The Blues’ defensive frailties were on show yet again as Robbie Brady was allowed to dispatch a strike into the bottom left corner with minimal pressure within the first five minutes. This extends an unwanted streak of no clean sheets that has lasted since the first game of the season against Tottenham.

The introduction of the three back formation in recent weeks has been met with criticism as it is becoming apparent that a midfield two of Allan and Doucoure are failing to impress in terms of controlling the game. The duo looked lethargic today as Burnley players such as Ashley Westwood gave them no time in order to progress the ball.

One of very few positives that came out of the first half was the continued form of Alex Iwobi who has adopted the right wing back role with ease and is looking comfortable going past players and delivering the ball into dangerous areas.

It wasn’t until Fabian Delph was forced off with a pulled hamstring that Everton started to get going. The three at the back went to a four with Ben Godfrey playing left back who showed his solid defensive qualities throughout the game. This formation change saw Everton get back in the game after some good work by Allan and Richarlison which allowed Calvert-Lewin notch his eleventh premier league game of the season.

In the second half, Carlo’s men dominated the ball but chances were few and far between as Burnley showed organisation and defensive solidity which we have come accustomed to seeing from a Sean Dyche team. Despite this, Gylfi Sigurdsson had a great chance to score after some James Rodriguez magic but the Everton number ten failed to convert.

This result should stand as a reality check for Everton fans who quickly need to realise that this squad is average. Whilst there are good individuals such as Allan, James and Richarlison just to name a few, there is also an alarming amount of deadwood at the club who are consistently putting in sub par performances. Players like Fabian Delph, Gylfi Sigurdsson and Cenk Tosun all need to leave the club and be replaced with better quality if this Everton team wishes to achieve a European place.

The starting eleven is becoming a jigsaw with the wrong pieces with Allan and Doucoure looking completely unaware of what the other is doing, James becoming a passenger in large parts of the game and Richarlison looking disinterested if the ball isn’t at his feet.

Burnley are a poor football team who sit 19th in the league yet there is a sense that Everton should feel happy with a point away from home today. However if the Blues can’t control games that are deemed ‘easy’ such as this one, then the tough December fixture list of Chelsea, Arsenal and Leicester will prove difficult.

As for where this team progresses from here, it is clear that the defence needs to be sorted out sooner rather than later, ideally seeing the end of the 3-4-3 formation and reverting back to a back four permanently. Personnel needs to be brought in the form of a right back, defensive midfielder as well as a centre back we can trust.