Everton host Crystal Palace at Goodison Park tonight and their task is simple – win to secure Premier League safety.
The Toffees have been dragged into a relegation scrap over the course of the season but Frank Lampard’s primary mission since coming in as manager will be complete if they can recapture the form that saw them unbeaten in four home games before a capitulation to Brentford at the weekend and ground the Eagles.
That 3-2 defeat to the Bees may be weighing heavily on their shoulders as Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison gave them a 2-1 lead at the break, despite Jarrad Branthwaite’s red card, but Yoanne Wissa and Rico Henry turned the game round in the second half before Salomon Rondon ludicrously got himself sent off late on to ensure the Toffees finished with nine men.
Palace won’t be an easy out, as Patrick Vieira’s side – who are unbeaten in four – have their eyes on a top-half finish and could secure their highest-ever placing in the Premier League era.
Here’s everything you need to know ahead of the crunch Premier League clash:
When does Everton vs Crystal Palace start?
Everton vs Crystal Palace kicks off at 7.45pm GMT tonight, Thursday 19 May at Goodison Park.
How to watch Everton vs Crystal Palace on TV and online
The match will not be broadcast live in the UK, with BT Sport instead choosing to show Aston Villa vs Burnley.
Everton duo Jarrad Branthwaite and Salomon Rondon will serve suspensions after being sent off against Brentford, although Michael Keane is expected to have recovered from the illness that ruled him out of that game.
Nathan Patterson, Andros Townsend, Fabian Delph and Yerry Mina are all absent but Andre Gomes came through his first start since February against the Bees and may hold on to his place ahead of the likes of Donny van de Beek, Allan and Tom Davies.
Meanwhile, Crystal Palace will be missing Michael Olise after his recent knock, with the forward joining long-term absentee Nathan Ferguson on the injury list.
James McArthur‘s calf strain could also keep him sidelined but goalkeeper Vicente Guaita should be available for selection once more and goalscorer against Aston Villa, Jeffrey Schlupp, is pushing for a start with Eberechi Eze – who Vieira is being careful with after his own long-term injury – the most likely candidate to drop out.
Everton XI: Pickford; Coleman, Holgate, Keane; Iwobi, Gomes, Doucoure, Mykolenko; Gordon, Calvert-Lewin, Richarlison
Crystal Palace XI: Guaita; Clyne, Andersen, Kouyate, Guehi, Mitchell; Gallagher, Milivojevic, Schlupp; Zaha, Mateta
Everton win: 10/11
Crystal Palace win: 10/3
Everton have far more on the line than Palace but completely capitulated against Brentford in a way that has to be concerning for Frank Lampard. How they bounce back from that will determine this fixture, so let’s say it ends as a draw that helps the Toffees in their relegation battle but isn’t quite the magic bullet a win would be. Everton 1-1 Crystal Palace
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