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Thanks for nothing Palace. Beat us, Arsenal, and Pool, yet offer nothing against Spurs who weren't particularly good either. 8 wins on the trot for that lot. Who would have thought it? Even one draw or loss in that sequence would have meant a 6-7 point lead with 5 games to go, and the title all but wrapped up. You have to give them credit, as annoying as it is.

So, that means we need to win at Goodison now. Had Spurs dropped points, we could have afforded  a draw here, but it's all too close and any dropped points on Sunday could allow Spurs to close the gap to 1 or 2 points, which is far too close for comfort.

The lead could vacillate to anywhere from 1-7 on Sunday. It could be a decisive day. 

A win for us would be massive, regardless of what happens later. If we win, at most we need to win our remaining home games to be champions. And our home games are eminently winnable. 

Everton, like Southampton, don't have much to play for, but it's always tough up there. We'll have to play very well to win. I certainly think we'll be up for it.

Back to basics for this game. A Kante/Matic pairing, with Willian to start, and Cesc to come on later. 

I honestly thought Stoke away would be the seminal moment of this campaign, but with things as it stands, it could be at Goodison.

We shall not be moved. 

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HUGE game... HUGE DAY in the title race this Sunday. Win this and I think we can keep one hand on the trophy, but drop points and it suddenly becomes squeeky bum time.

Everton away is probably the trickiest fixture available in the league at the moment, apart from maybe away to Spurs, so this will be a huge test of our nerve. We have to take control of this game, I feel like we showed far to much respect to Southampton in the first half on Tuesday, so we need to attack early and put them on the back foot.

They don't technically have anything to play for, as they've all but finished 7th now, but they will want to keep this run going and they will want to have a say in the title race, they will also want to make a point after the reverse fixture earlier this season... this is not going to be easy.

Having Costa get a couple of goals ahead of this game is huge, as he will be so important for this game and that combined with the fact Pedro and Willian both got a rest will be a huge help.

My prediction:

1-2 win

Courtois
Azpi
Luiz
Cahill
Moses
Kante
Matic
Alonso
Pedro
Costa
Hazard

Come on Chels!

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Jasonb   

Just taken a look at Everton's recent results and didn't realise just how good they have been at home. Their last defeat was by Leicester in the FA Cup back in January. This really looks like the test to see if we are  real champions or just pretenders. A draw would not be a disaster but I'm hoping we play to our best capabilities and upset their impressive home record.

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2 hours ago, A Blue Essien said:

Thanks for nothing Palace. Beat us, Arsenal, and Pool, yet offer nothing against Spurs who weren't particularly good either. 8 wins on the trot for that lot. Who would have thought it? Even one draw or loss in that sequence would have meant a 6-7 point lead with 5 games to go, and the title all but wrapped up. You have to give them credit, as annoying as it is.

So, that means we need to win at Goodison now. Had Spurs dropped points, we could have afforded  a draw here, but it's all too close and any dropped points on Sunday could allow Spurs to close the gap to 1 or 2 points, which is far too close for comfort.

The lead could vacillate to anywhere from 1-7 on Sunday. It could be a decisive day. 

A win for us would be massive, regardless of what happens later. If we win, at most we need to win our remaining home games to be champions. And our home games are eminently winnable. 

Everton, like Southampton, don't have much to play for, but it's always tough up there. We'll have to play very well to win. I certainly think we'll be up for it.

Back to basics for this game. A Kante/Matic pairing, with Willian to start, and Cesc to come on later. 

I honestly thought Stoke away would be the seminal moment of this campaign, but with things as it stands, it could be at Goodison.

We shall not be moved. 

They had played on Sunday to be fair and held Spurs off until close to the end.

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3 hours ago, Jasonb said:

A draw would not be a disaster but I'm hoping we play to our best capabilities and upset their impressive home record.

Assuming (as we should) that Spurs win all of their games, a draw would mean we would then need to win all of our games, the same as a defeat would. So, in that sense, a draw would be every bit as disasterous as a defeat.

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Kezza   
3 hours ago, Jasonb said:

Just taken a look at Everton's recent results and didn't realise just how good they have been at home. Their last defeat was by Leicester in the FA Cup back in January. This really looks like the test to see if we are  real champions or just pretenders. A draw would not be a disaster but I'm hoping we play to our best capabilities and upset their impressive home record.

Even if we lose we are not "pretenders". You don't stay on top for so long by being "pretenders".

Everton will be tough. Tougher than Southampton.

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paulw66   
23 minutes ago, McCreadie said:

Assuming (as we should) that Spurs win all of their games, a draw would mean we would then need to win all of our games, the same as a defeat would. So, in that sense, a draw would be every bit as disasterous as a defeat.

Hold on.......if we drew we would need to win ALL of our remaining games, well by all you mean 4. Three of which are at home to poor sides. 

Equally, it is far more probable that Spurs will fail to win at least one of their remaining matches, so a point as opposed to zero is still something. If Spurs draw once, then we can still lose a game and draw at Everton. 

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GURJ SS   

Everton are a strong team that have the kind of set up that could exploit our team, they have a quick right side and a huge striker; not the type of team we can deal with very well, going off the basis of our general set up.

I would like Conte to change it again for this game.

Courtois;

Zouma, Luiz, Cahill;

Azpilicueta, Cesc, Kante, Ake;

Pedro, Costa, Hazard;

This way we can give much more freedom to Cesc, Pedro, Hazard and Costa, without worrying about a break down the wings and a cross or a long ball into Lukaku; as our back 3 are all capable of challenging Lukaku.

I reckon looking at the last 5 games:

Everton (A)
Middlesbrough (H)
West Brom (A)
Watford (H)
Sunderland (H)

I'm thinking: DWWWW, but I've got a feeling that WBA will hold us to a draw; although I reckon it'll still be enough to win the league. I hope we win the league before the last day of the season, it'll be nice to give the standouts from the young cup winners a reward.

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paulw66   
10 minutes ago, GURJ SS said:

I hope we win the league before the last day of the season, it'll be nice to give the standouts from the young cup winners a reward.

More importantly, a fond farewell to JT. 

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