Everton - Chelsea: Five things to watch

Ahead of Everton's highly anticipated clash against Chelsea, here are five things to watch during the game.

How John Stones deals with the pressure

After a whole summer of news and speculation, John Stones stayed at Everton but facing the team that chased him all summer, there may be pressure on his shoulders. 

After a few solid outings against Barnsley and Tottenham Hotspur, Stones has proved he can handle the pressure but playing against the team that courted him all summer may be a different story. 

Stones seemingly has a old head on his young shoulders but it will his first time experiencing playing against the team that tried and failed to sign him. 

Crowd pressure on Chelsea

The Chelsea team and Jose Mourhnio will not get the warmest of welcomes at Goodison Park on Saturday afternoon. Goodison Park can be one of the most intimidating grounds in England when the home faithful build up an atmosphere.

While the anger all stems from the Stones transfer saga, Everton fans will be lapping up the chance to chant towards Jose Mourinho and make it as uncomfortable as possible for the away side. 

With Chelsea not in the greatest form, the pressure that the Goodison crowd put on Chelsea may be a huge boost to Everton’s chances of securing three points. 

Players coming off the international break

Both sides had numerous players on international duty this week, playing all over the world. With Everton having players come from across the atlantic, they will have to make sure they are ready and fully fit. 

Tim Howard and Ramiro Funes Mori, both played across the atlantic and will need time to recover. With Howard being Everton’s number one goalkeeper, and Funes Mori maybe having to make his Everton debut, they will both have to be at peak fitness after long journeys back to Merseyside.

Seamus Coleman and James McCarthy both suffered knocks while on duty for the Republic of Ireland and will have to be assessed ahead of the game. 

How do Everton deal with Pedro?

One of Chelsea’s summer signings, Pedro, has already shown what he can do in his brief spell so far. The former Barcelona winger can seemingly do it all and Everton will have to be at their best to stop him.

With the Toffees struggling at both full back positions, Pedro and his team mate Eden Hazard maybe able to find some joy on the wings.

It will take a huge defensive effort from all in Everton blue to stop Chelsea. Aaron Lennon may start after he returned to Goodison Park on deadline day, and the way he tracks back will be vital to Everton having success in the game. 

The continuing form of Ross Barkley 

Ross Barkley has started the season in stunning form. He’s already scored a handful of goals and chipped in a few assists, something that also continued into the international break. 

Getting his first international goal will be a huge boost to the boyhood Blue and Everton will need him to be at his very best this weekend.

Chelsea have struggled in midfield so far this season and Roberto Martinez could move Barkley further up the field to give him the best chance to influence the game, in the only way he can. 

If Barkley is able to pick the ball up deep and drive towards goal, we may another goal or two to add to his tally. 

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