How should Everton line-up? Barry and McCarthy straight in
It’s been a prosperous transfer window for Everton who have strengthened well despite losing Marouane Fellaini late on deadline day and this new-look squad should be ready to compete for a trophy.
Everton are currently priced at 18/1 to lift the FA Cup with last season’s victorious manager at the helm, while a Capital One Cup triumph is available at 14/1 with Ladbrokes.
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Wigan’s former manager has wasted no time bringing in new recruits to Goodison Park this summer with seven new players arriving, including the three loan signings.
Former Wigan trio James McCarthy, Arouna Kone and Antonio Alcaraz are in, while Gareth Barry, Romelu Lukaku, Gerard Deulofeu and Joel Robles join them, but how many of them should be first choice for Martinez?
At 34 Tim Howard is still the main man between the sticks, while England centre-back Phil Jagielka and the defensive unit as a whole virtually picks itself also.
Sylvain Distin is still first choice to partner Jags, though at 35 this is probably his last full season as first-choice, with Alcaraz poised to take his chance.
Leighton Baines is the best left-back in the Premier League, while Seamus Coleman’s own metamorphosis into a right-back is nearing completion and the Irishman is a marked improvement on previous Everton incumbents.
The main battle ground is the centre of the park. Premier League winner Barry is a must to anchor any such set-up and then £13m new boy McCarthy cannot be left out after such expenditure so he slots in next to the Manchester City man.
Just ahead of them it was a straight shoot-out between fan favourite Leon Osman and emerging star Ross Barkley, but the young pretender gets the nod after some stand-out performances.
The big losers here are Steven Naismith and Darren Gibson who must occupy the bench.
On the two advanced wide positions Kevin Mirallas and Steven Pienaar are first choices though Kone and Barcelona loanee Deulofeu provide stiff competition.
Finally, Lukaku is the man to lead the line after his prolific campaign at West Brom ahead of either Kone or the shadow of his former-self Nikica Jelavic.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.