Everton v Watford Preview

So how was it for you? Was it all you hoped for, this first dalliance with Everton 2019/20? Questionnaire is in the post, we value your feedback and that your experience is all you hoped it to be.

Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive a man insane, once said a sound Red.

What is Evertonianism if it’s not giving you illusions of uncomplicated progress only to crush your spirit in a sequence of repeated acts that would honour even the most cruellest of Greek Tragedy. Not until you are at peak self loathing and damning your inexplicable commitment to Everton are you truly Everton. For this is a labour of love, it’s a labour of resentment and a vehicle of self discovery about one’s own rage, where you’re locked inside the vehicle while simultaneously raging at the vehicle but ultimately at the mercy of the vehicle. If this was in cocktail form it would be one part Hans Tours and two parts the next Speed movie.

Then when you succumb to that and accept its futility it will feed you the poison that nourishes you once more, hope, and like an addict you’re back at the beginning again with an open heart convinced this time it will be different. There’s no parting a fool from their Everton.

Bit melodramatic for an away point at Palace after only one game isn’t it. Oh absofuckinglutely mate. But you’re missing rule #2 of Everton, only by crying it in at every opportunity do the cruel Gods that smite us occasionally bestow us a break. That’s why Zaha didn’t net a late winner last week, we’d paid our dues through incessant self flagellation. Rule #3, since you’re not asking, is to go way overboard on how much you hate Everton. The final rule is never ever speak on behalf of Evertonians, or think you get to define in any way the relation between Everton and Evertonian.

Which sets us up nicely for the most hopeful, the most beautiful of things – our return to Goodison Park after a summer away doing life’s futile stuff. The first home game brings comfort in familiarity, a rare possibility of wearing a short sleeved garment and hoping that this next chapter of 19 pages is one where we finally nail that duplicitous bastard Danglars for all he’s done to us.

Don’t you fucking dare forget that siren. That sound, it’s our Duettino- Sull’aria over the tannoy. I don’t know what it’s singing about, truth is I don’t want to know. I’d like to think it’s singing about something so beautiful it can’t be expressed in words. Like causing Big Red to shit their title bid on the spot. For the purposes of flagellation it will all be forgotten as Doucoure rounds Pickford to slot about four minutes later.

Watford are the first foes at Goodison this season to stand between us and Saturday evening contentment. Our visitors suffered a much worse first day debacle than ours, in losing 3 zip at home to Brighton. They’ll be coming to Goodison wanting to make amends for that, and as long as they ditch the cringey plastic snakes they’re fully entitled to have a pop at us and see how it works out.

Excepting the horrific snake demonstration and a few of their edgy millennials trying to create a rivalry on twitter, I’ve got little beef with Watford who conduct themselves with few airs and graces, and enjoy a parochial support with limited lad bible content. I even welcome Rocket Man being played at halftime at their gaff as a big Sir Elton fan here. Truth is there’s many others out there who deserve our complete disdain more than Watford. I can only hope it remains that way although I fear the more we try to buy their best players it’s only going to prompt more ill suited bantz merchants to try and poorly antagonise your twitter experience. They’re not reflective of a usually sound fanbase in Watfordonians – is that a term?

Javi Garcia is their latest Capo who done well taking them to an FA Cup Final in his first season only for the second best team they’ve faced in a final to ship a few goals past them. The manager will be battling hard to make sure that wasn’t his zenith, but fragility is the key word for that Watford position until the Poundland Sopranos owners sell up.

Here’s some of their players:

Deeney – the type that “played too rough” as a kid, mainly down to a lack of attention at home and possessing the skull of an adult mastiff at age 8. Him scoring on our beautiful green grass carries the same weight of insult as Elton John winding down the window to grock on the holy trinity statue so don’t you fucking dare allow it, Everton defenders.

Deulofeu – he’s tasted our sex and the social media photos look all cosy and happy but he can only get off by begging us for grot on the snapchat once he’s gone beyond five pints on a Friday. We’re happy to send heavily filtered smut too, if he begs us right.

Doucoure – is he any good?

Will Hughes – as translucent as a Greek gecko. What’s the weather forecast tomorrow? Any direct sunlight and get a lad on the Bullens with a big mirror following him around the pitch, I guarantee red raw by 20 and down the tunnel.

Isaac Success – if names worked this way then we’d have Oumar Superb up front, or Gylfi Consistent playing behind.

Bored now.

Everton have a few selection conundrums already. DCL will start up front but needs to bounce one in off his arse soon and hope it breaks the seal. Kean should be pushing week by week and I’m watching with interest to see if he is suited to that lone striker role, because if not Silva will have to change the system. Speaking of which Sigurdsson is facing scrutiny from some quarters already and likewise will have to produce some consistent impact from that number 10 position in order to justify being selected as the fulcrum of this Everton attack. Richarlison is a few weeks behind the other in preparedness but no concerns there. Bernard similarly will need to produce moments that win matches. It’s all up for grabs in the final third then.

Midfield is where the injuries take hold. Delph trained on Thursday so there’s a hope he starts, otherwise it’s Davies and Gbarmin left to play as a middle two, which at this early stage of the season would look a little fragile. Maybe this game may be a prompt for Silva to change his usual formation, and move to the 4-3-3 that the formation virgins tell me he favours.

Back four and keeper should remain unchanged which gives another whirl for Keane and Mina to work something together. Not that there’s much alternative like.

So welcome back anyway, maybe you were thinking that both the time and money invested in this biweekly thing of ours could be utilised better. You’d probably be right, yet here you are again.

Truth is you’re institutionalised by Everton. These walls are funny. First you hate them, then you get used to them. Enough time passes, you get so you depend on them. When the first long note of the air siren hits, and then those drums come, you’ll know why.

Welcome back, there’s no place I’d rather be and no company I crave more. What’s our name?

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