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With just under a month to go until the Barclays Premier League kicks off its 38 weeks of intense matches that never fail to entertain, let’s take a look at one of England’s top clubs.
A US fan favorite, solely due to Tim Howard being a star on their roster, Everton FC are looking to fight for a Champions League spot this upcoming season.
The team lost head coach David Moyes to Manchester United last season when former Red Devils manager Sir Alex Ferguson supposedly chose Moyes to succeed him. With Moyes out, Roberto Martinez took over and surprised us all with a fifth place finish in one of Europe’s top leagues.
Everton’s offseason has been fairly quite so far. They signed on-loan midfielder Gareth Barry on a permanent basis as the club confirmed a mutual agreement for a three-year contract with the English-man.
Otherwise, they released Apostolos Vellios, a young starlet who failed to impress Martinez. He has been linked to clubs in Belgium recently.
Looking ahead to next season, Everton will not make the champions league for a few reasons. One main reason isn’t even due to them getting worse, but simply that Manchester United will be a lot better under Louis Van Gaal. Everton finished ahead of the Red Devils last season but Roberto Martinez will have to pull quite a few tricks from his sleeve if he is to finish as high as last time.
Firstly, Romelu Lukaku will not be their main man up top due to his loan expiring. However, there are a few rumors surfacing that the Belgian international can make a permanent switch to Everton after Chelsea bought Diego Costa. But, without him, Everton will not present the same danger that they used to have.
Secondly, they haven’t signed anyone to make them a better team. So, as teams around them are getting better, Everton needs to make some signings.
The only player that Everton has publicly been linked to is Bosnian defender Muhamed Besic of Ferencvaros. He performed well for Bosnia & Herzegovina at the World Cup in June and has played 47 league games for his club. Being only 21, that’s an incredible feat in professional football leagues.
Young starlet Ross Barkley has been linked with a move away from the club after an impressive performance last season with the Toffees. Manchester City are strong candidates to sign the English-man if Yaya Toure is to leave.
Everton are in for a long run this season. Even if they sign Besic and have him start immediately, there are at least five or six teams better than them based on roster alone. If Roberto Martinez can find that little bit of magic again, then Everton can make a decent run.
Projected Finish: 7th
Projected FA Cup / Carling Cup Finish: Quarter Finals
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