Everton vs Chelsea Preview: Toffees look to extend unbeaten run to seven games

A preview of Everton’s early festive kick-off clash with Chelsea at Goodison Park.

Everton vs Chelsea Preview: Toffees look to extend unbeaten run to seven games
Photo: Getty Images/Chris Brunskill

On Saturday lunchtime, Everton welcome Chelsea to Goodison Park looking to extend their unbeaten run to seven games under new boss Sam Allardyce.

Everton have beaten Chelsea just once in the last eight Premier League meetings, drawing another and losing the other six.

With a win, Allardyce’s side can continue their climb up the league table and leapfrog Leicester City into eighth place and sit three points behind Tottenham Hotspur in seventh.

The Toffees have not beaten the Blues at Goodison Park in the league since 2015 but new boss Allardyce has won his last two league games against Chelsea. With a win on Saturday, he would become the first manager to win against the London side with five different clubs.

The visitors are in good form, however, after winning four of their last five league games. Their last defeat came three games ago against West Ham United - another early Saturday kick-off.

Antonio Conte’s side also picked up a late 2-1 win against AFC Bournemouth in the Carabao Cup during the week.

Last Meeting

The last team the two sides met in the league this season, then Everton boss Ronald Koeman saw his side suffer a 2-0 defeat away at Stamford Bridge at the beginning of the Premier League campaign.

After Koeman departed Merseyside, David Unsworth took charge of a 2-1 defeat in the Carabao Cup in which Dominic Calvert-Lewin scored in the dying minutes to at least get the Blues the goal that their second-half effort deserved.

The last time they met at Goodison Park, it was a 3-0 win last May gave Conte’s men a firm grasp on the league title that they would go on to seal two games later. A 66th-minute Pedro wonder strike was the pick of the bunch as the visitors scored three second-half goals to seal the points.

 

A look at: Chelsea

Antonio Conte’s men have lost just one of their last 10 Premier League games, winning eight and drawing the other.

They sit third in the table, 14 points behind Premier League leaders Manchester City.

This time last term, they led the league with 46 points. They are eight points worse off this time around.

Cesc Fabregas always plays well at Goodison Park. He has three goals and four assists in his last five Premier League appearances at the old ground. The midfielder just needs one more goal to become the third Spaniard to netted 50 times in the Premier League.

 

Team News

Sam Allardyce may name an unchanged squad to the one that beat Swansea City 3-1 last Monday night.

Yannick Bolasie continues his return and may return to the substitutes bench after over a year out with a knee ligament injury. Leighton Baines could also return following a calf muscle strain he picked up against Southampton at the back end of November.

Ross Barkley and James McCarthy took part in a behind closed doors fixture between the Everton squad as they continue their returns to fitness but are still a couple of weeks away.

Chelsea will be without Alvaro Morata after he picked up his fifth booking of the season when celebrating his late winner in the Carabao Cup against AFC Bournemouth during midweek.

David Luiz remains out with a knee injury.

Everton: Pickford, Kenny, Holgate, Williams, Martina, Gueye, Schneiderlin, Lennon, Sigurdsson, Rooney and Calvert-Lewin.

Chelsea: Courtois; Azpilicueta, Christensen, Cahill, Moses, Kante, Bakayoko, Alonso, Willian, Hazard, Batshuayi.

Referee: Bobby Madley

Match Day Stats

1. Wayne Rooney has scored 10 goals in 16 Premier League appearances this season - the fewest amount of games it’s taken him to reach double figures in a season since the 2011/12 campaign.

2. Chelsea have won their last three league meetings with Everton by an aggregate score of 10-0.

3. Everton have won four of their last five league games, drawing the other, following just three wins from their previous 13 matches - three draws and seven losses.