The 2015/16 EPL season promises to be one of the, if not the, most competitive seasons in a long time and after missing out on a top ten spot in the league last season for the first time since the 05/06 season Everton are angling for a spot in the top half of the table next May this season. Last season saw them compromised by the Europa League campaign that saw them reach the last 16 stage but without this to distract them in the upcoming campaign can they ensure that they fight their way back to where they belong?
The biggest issue with Everton last season was their inclusion in the Europa League as their European campaign saw them struggle domestically in the Premier League. By the time that they were eliminated by Dynamo Kyiv towards the end of March at the last 16 stage they had won just seven of their 29 EPL games and sat 14th in the table, but in the final nine matches of the season they collected a further 16 points and moved to 11th despite losing three of their last four games. Will they be able to show this kind of form when they step into the ring during the 2015/16 Premier League season?
2015/16 EPL Preview:
The biggest thing that the Everton side and manager Roberto Martinez will need to work on this season is the consistency that they lacked during the last campaign. They won just one of their first seven matches and then won just two games between the end of November and mid-March when they exited Europe, but with the right additions to an already top quality squad then returning to the top half of the Premier League, and maybe going even further up towards the European qualification places, should be an easy task for the Merseysiders.
Ins and Outs:
Tom Cleverley – The 25 year old midfielder joined Manchester United youth team in 2000 and he made his breakthrough to the first team during the 2011/12 season and he made 78 appearances between then and the end of the 2013/14 season, scoring five times. However, new manager Louis van Gaal saw him as surplus to requirements and sent him on loan last season and he netted three times in 37 games for Aston Villa as he had an impressive season. Van Gaal released the midfielder at the end of last season and the player who has 13 caps for England has now joined the Merseyside team where he looks to continue the rebuilding of his career and this is a great signing for both club and player for these aims.
Gerard Deulofeu – The Spanish winger/striker moves to Goodison Park on a permanent £4.2m deal following an impressive loan spell at the club in the 2013/14 season where he netted four goals in 29 games. The 21 year old spent last season on loan at Sevilla where he helped the team win the Europa League before making a move to the Premier League for this season. This is another excellent signing for the club and player.
David Henen – The 19 year old striker has also moved to club after spending the last campaign at the club playing for the U21 team. He moves from Greek club Olympiakos mainly to play for the youth team again this season and the youngster will be looking to develop and break into the first team squad for this season.
The club has released nine players so far with this list comprised of youth players that have not been offered contracts and older players who are moving onwards. The biggest two names on the list are veteran defenders Sylvain Distin and Antolín Alcaraz, and the former of these two players having moved to EPL newcomers Bournemouth for the upcoming season.
Everton EPL Preview Bets:
Online sportsbook Bet365.com believes that the forthcoming Premier League season will be a much better one for The Toffees as they make them the eighth favourites to take the Premier League title at 251.00, just behind Southampton at 201.00. The last time that Everton took the top flight title was the 1986/87 season and while we cannot see them repeating the glory of almost three decades ago there is still value to be had on the club.
The safest bet to have on Everton this season is for the club to finish the season in the top half of the Premier League table at the modest odds of 1.29 that is sure to bring a profit over the course of the 2015/16 campaign. If you feel that you’re after something of a more risky bet on The Toffees then they are they are the slight second favourites to Southampton to win the Premier League without the big six of Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester United and City, Liverpool and Tottenham at 4.00. This offers plenty of potential value and we feel that this offers a nice earner as they are sure to continue to improve without the distraction of Europe and with their top quality player additions.