Hey. Wake up! Hi there. What do you mean Steven Naismith came off the bench to score a hat-trick and we murdered the Premier League champions? Don’t be stupid, that was a dream. They rolled us over 2-0. Pedro and Diego Costa scored, and Gareth Barry was sent off for clattering Cesc Fabregas moments after he’d laid up both goals, left the field, had a shower, got in his car and arrived at home. See, that sounds much more real doesn’t it? Dreams don’t come true.
Oh, but they do.
What a glorious day for the royal blue magic. They came here, Chelsea the champions, destined to bounce back from a dire start in style. They brought Hollister-wearing beauts and skinheads using words like “intel” and “bods” while inspiring words like “illiterate” and “twats”. They didn’t think they were going to win, they knew it. Knew it like they know Maggie Thatcher’s long gone. Bet they’re distraught about that too.
So three minutes in Muhamed Besic finds himself in the opposition penalty area and gets injured through the shock of it all. Blast. Our tactical masterplan in ruins. Even more so, we thought, when Steven Naismith came on. How was this going to work? Was he going to sit deep? Would he go behind Lukaku and shift the whole midfield? Would he tear Chelsea apart like a ravenous bear ripping a salmon to shreds? Would he-oh, no, wait, it was the last thing. And it was glorious. The first hat-trick scored against Chelsea in either of Jose Mourinho’s spells in charge, which is particularly boss because it left him mumbling glumly like Sylvester Stallone with a thick lip in the post-match interviews, his head falling off completely because Roberto Martinez dared to have a chat with some journalists. It was Everton’s first league hat-trick since Louis Saha put four past Blackpool in 2011, and Naismith became only the sixth Premier League player to come off the bench and notch at least three times.
No, really. Steven Naismith. Put the smelling salts away, you’re fine. Maybe this is the Corbyn magic we’ve all been hearing about. Yet he didn’t ask David Cameron how boss he thinks John Stones is in PMQs despite my asking him to. That’s strike one Jeremy lad.
All in all, it was a beautiful day, and just what we needed to kick this season into high gear – Everton in this case being the gear. So we’re well placed to give Swansea their first ever league win against us then, right?
If we play like we did against Chelsea today we’ll be as sound as a cool pint on an exotic beach. Tim Howard did well and couldn’t stop Matic scoring a beauty – he got Player of the Month for August, you know. That’s seriously a thing that occurred. The defence was boss but John Stones transcends even that glowing review. If you listened hard enough as he glided past, you could actually hear the silky-smooth purring noise only a Rolls Royce and yer ma can make. That’s what Chelsea missed out on? Didn’t that make it even more wonderful? EVERTON defender John Stones doing a great job for EVERTON and being EVERTON and that. Gareth Barry was fantastic too. You’re starting to see why this might be one huge pipe dream right? But he was, breaking up play and distributing calmly. James McCarthy has gone back to being that magic and completely underrated midfield engine, which is great. Barkley and Lukaku now look happy to bomb on and terrorise any defence they please, which is hugely exciting. And I’m taking back anything bad I ever said about Arouna Kone because he’s sound, the big camel jockey.
Swansea City are a respectable football club from a massively dreary place and that’s about it. There’s not much to say about the people, because the ones not sloping around in full Lonsdales trying to stab you are sound round-faced rubicund (look it up) Welsh folk, and unless they’re from Rhyl, Welsh folk are generally alright. The club floats inoffensively around the upper-middle of the Premier League, and really they’d love to stay there. It must be said that after Michael Laudrup, who I heard yer da wanted to be Everton manager, it was a brave and clever move to bring in Garry Monk. Monk has repaid his club’s faith, something you don’t get much of these days, by being honest, straightforward and tactically in-tune. He has the club playing good and honest football. What? He’s ENGLISH?! Quick, get the hyperbole out! Definitely the next turbo-Alf Ramsey him. But this is a club that loves Bob Latchford as much as we do and I’d say that’s a fair reason to at least respect them a bit. But if they get above themselves and start mouthing off that they’re better than us and they’ll need piping down quickly. We normally do to be fair, as they’ve still never beaten us except in the League Cup last season, and we played Sylvain Distin and Tony Hibbert so does it really count?
While I’m at it, have you seen Tony Hibbert recently? He’s either taking down ISIS single-handed or laid up in bed with his crooked legs reading the Angling Times. Come back Hibbo.
It’s Lukasz Fabianski in goal. He’s progressed nicely since leaving the goalkeeping vortex of doom that is Arsenal. How do they turn every keeper they have into a bottler? A back line of Naughton, Fernandez, Williams and Taylor, led by big grock Williams, who yer da wanted Laudrup to bring with him to Everton. Probably Ki and Shelvey in the midfield. Shelvey, Definite Liverpool Messiah #342214, who loves spanking the ball round the pitch randomly like his hero Big Stevie G but weirdly Gerrard got standing ovations for knocking the ball out to wingers as if it isn’t something players can’t achieve with consummate ease and Shelvey doesn’t. The real danger comes from the wings, with Ayew and Montero in real form, and the creative talent of Gylfi Sigurdsson in behind the striker. The striker in question is Bafetimbi Gomis, and as he has the most eye-cripplingly awful goal celebration out there he can’t be allowed to score today.
Who then for the magic Blues?
Howard, Coleman, Stones, Jagielka, Galloway. Simple as. Brendan Galloway was really impressive against Chelsea, and his athleticism will be of benefit for this one. Barry and McCarthy in the middle. Sorted. What then? It’s either having Barkley and Naismith in central roles as well with Kone allowed to go up top with Lukaku or drift out wide, or we – get this – actually use one of the 243 wingers we’ve got now. Lennon looked sharp during his cameo, while both Mirallas and Deulofeu are both desperate for a game. It’s nice to have choice. Also, how sound was Ramiro Funes Mori, strolling through the Chelsea midfield ten minutes into his Premier League debut? Sound him.
After the dizzying heights of last week’s win, there is of course the fear that this week can’t reach the same levels of ecstasy. The thing is, it doesn’t have to. All we need is the residue of the pure arrogance that saw us saunter past a side that thought they had us beat and take Swansea down.
So keep on keepin’ on Everton. More of the same if you don’t mind.