Stade Rennais 4-1 Everton: Blues comfortably beaten for the second time in two days

Stade Rennais 4-1 Everton: Blues comfortably beaten for the second time in two days

A report from Everton's pre-season friendly against Stade Rennais.

connor-bennett
Connor Bennett
Stade RennaisKoubek, Traoré, Mexer, Gélin, Baal, Lea-Siliki, André, Zeffane, Grenier, Bourigeaud and Siebatcheu
EvertonStekelenburg, Coleman, Baines, Jagielka, Keane, Gueye (Davies, min.75), Schneiderlin, Sigurdsson, Richarlison, Sandro (Mirallas, min.75) and Tosun (Niasse, min.75)
SCORE 1-0, Bourigeaud, (Min. 27) 2-0, Siebatcheu, (Min. 35) 2-1, Richarlison, (Min.45) 3-1, Maouassa, (Min. 76) 4-1, Lea-Siliki

Everton were comfortably beaten for the second time in two days, as they fell to a 4-1 defeat away to Stade Rennais in Brittany.

Goals from Benjamin Bourigeaud, Jordan Siebatcheu, Faitout Maouassa and James Lea-Siliki sealed the victory for Sabri Lamouchi’s side despite Richarlison answering back for the Blues before the half-time break.

Story of the match

Following their defeat to Blackburn Rovers on Thursday night, Marco Silva’s side started the first period much better than they did at Ewood Park. 

The Blues had the ball in the net after 20 minutes but Cenk Tosun’s header was disallowed after Richarlison was adjudged to have fouled his marker.

However, the hosts took the lead just before the half-hour mark through Bourigeaud.

Clement Grenier cut open the Everton backline with a through ball, finding a charging Lea-Siliki who cut the ball back across the box. That cut back avoided a number of flailing legs before finding the unmarked Bourigeaud at the far-post who was able to poke home with ease.

They doubled their lead less than ten minutes later in a similar fashion.

Lea-Siliki found himself free, again, on the left before drilling a ball across the face of goal for the dangerous Siebatcheu who belted his shot home from inside the six-yard box.

However, the Blues scored their first goal in pre-season in three games as new boy Richarlison bagged his first goal.

The Brazilian drove at the heart of the French’s sides backline, beating two defenders, before trying to play a one-two with Sandro. A defender got in the way of the pass but the ball fell back to the Blues new signing before he struck an effort goalwards, cutting into the Rennes lead.

After the break, it was much more positive from the Blues as Seamus Coleman drilled an effort over the bar after a determined run from his own half.

Silva’s side again looked to utilise their width and found joy through movement from Leighton Baines, Coleman and Richarlison.

Yet, they were unable to create many chances in front of goal.

Their misery was compounded when Lea-Siliki sent Maouassa racing through down the left, handing the substitute a one-on-one chance against Maarten Stekelenburg which he duly dispatched from. 

Lea-Saliki, who chipped in with a hat-trick of assists, found the back of the net himself a few moments later as he stroked home from the right-hand side of the Everton 18-yard box.

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The Warmdown

Reinforcements needed for Silva’s squad

Everton are hoping to add Lucas Digne to their squad before next week’s final pre-season friendly against Valencia but on the evidence of pre-season so far, many more signings are needed.

The focus for the Blues during this window has been on whittling down the squad of the deadwood and players who aren’t likely to make any sort of worthwhile contribution next season. Yet, with less than a fortnight to go in the window, they still have plenty of things to change.

At least one new central defender is needed - even with Yerry Mina as a possibility - before the close of the window. 

Blues emphasis on width

In a number of behind the scenes social media videos, the Blues have been shown to be working on their wing play with plenty of focus being put on getting the ball wide - especially to the full-backs.

Like in the other friendlies so far this summer, that was evident on Saturday evening with Morgan Schneiderlin and Idrissa Gueye consistently looking wide in their play rather than forcing it through Gylfi Sigurdsson behind Tosun.

That allowed Richarlison, and Sandro, to again look lively but the Spaniard struggled with his final ball.

He has been handed plenty of chances during pre-season with both Ademola Lookman and Theo Walcott being sidelined through injury before he hasn’t really taken them.

With the natural wide men looking like returning in the next couple of days, the Blues may find a bit more joy through them.

Pace an issue

Everton’s lack of pace in midfield and at the back must be a concern to Silva.

Their French hosts found space with ease and then were able to beat their markers with no trouble whatsoever.

It was a similar story on Thursday night against Blackburn but as the season draws closer, that concern must grow ever more for the new Blues boss.

Stand-out players

Grenier was central to everything the hosts made happen before being subbed off just after the hour mark. The former Lyon man found space wherever he went - central or wide - and caused the Blues plenty of problems.

Lea-Siliki was able to utilise his pace to cause Everton trouble throughout the evening. The winger tucked home with ease for Rennes third goal whilst chipping in with an assist for the other three goals.

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