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MATCH PREVIEW ~ Fulham visit Everton ~ Prem MD 01 ~ 23/24

last updated Friday 11th August 2023, 10:03 PM

Match Preview

Everton vrs Fulham

Premiership Match Day 01 2324 at Goodison Park

Saturday 12th August 2023    KO: 15:00

Referee: Stuart Attwell (Warwickshire)

Fulham manager Marco Silva
Fulham manager
Marco Silva
Marco Silva
His Wiki page
Everton coach Sean Dyche
Everton Coach
Sean Dyche
His Wiki page
Fulham and Everton kick off their 2023-24 Premier League campaign with an encounter at Goodison Park on Saturday afternoon.

Fulham head into the 2023-24 campaign hoping to build on their impressive return to the Premier League last season in which they exceeded expectations with a top-10 finish, a year on from their Championship title triumph.

However, former Everton boss Marco Silva's side have endured a somewhat disjointed pre-season this summer, largely due to the uncertainty over the futures of key attacking duo Aleksandar Mitrovic and Willian amid interest from clubs in Saudi Arabia.

After winning one and losing two of their three pre-season friendlies in the inaugural Premier League Summer Series in the USA, Fulham returned to home soil and beat German club Hoffenheim 2-1 last weekend, courtesy of goals from new recruits Raul Jimenez and Calvin Bassey – the club's only two summer signings to date.

Fulham have developed an unwanted habit of making a slow start to a league season, as they have only won one of their last eight opening-weekend fixtures, failing to win any of their last three in the Premier League.

The Cottagers have also lost their only two previous encounters against Everton in the opening game of a top-flight season, although a record of three wins in their last five Premier League meetings with the Toffees bodes well ahead of Saturday's fixture.

The Cottagers head to Merseyside four months on from securing a 3-1 away victory against the Toffees courtesy of goals from Harrison Reed, Harry Wilson and the now departed Daniel James.

Everton remain one of six clubs – along with Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur – to have never been relegated from the Premier League since its inception in 1992 after narrowly avoiding the drop of the final day of last season.

A stunning Abdoulaye Doucoure strike sealed a slender 1-0 win over Bournemouth in May to help the Toffees finish 17th and two points above the bottom three, with manager Sean Dyche successfully steering the club to safety after replacing Frank Lampard in January.

Eleven weeks on from their final-day heroics at Goodison Park, Dyche is preparing his side for their season opener against Fulham and is seeking to make a positive start to his first full season in charge of Everton as they endeavour to avoid another gruelling relegation battle. However, that could prove challenging if they fail to improve their squad before next month's transfer deadline.

Indeed, the cash-strapped Toffees have only signed 38-year-old Ashley Young on a free transfer and Arnaut Danjuma on loan so far this summer while watching a number of their Premier League rivals strengthen in several departments. Teenage forward Youssef Chermiti is closing in on a permanent move to the blue side of Merseyside, though, at the time of writing.

Although Everton enter the new season with a smaller squad than the one that avoided the drop last season, Dyche's side enjoyed an unbeaten pre-season after winning four and drawing two of their six friendly fixtures, including a narrow 1-0 home win over Sporting Lisbon last weekend courtesy of a first-half strike from Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

Everton head into Saturday's clash with Fulham having lost only one of their last 11 opening fixtures in a Premier League season, although they have been beaten in their last two home encounters with the Cottagers, conceding five goals in the process.

Head to Head

  • Fulham failed to win their first 27 league games away to Everton (D4, L23) but have won their past two matches at Goodison Park.

  • They could equal their longest top-flight away winning streak against an opponent of three, set versus West Bromwich Albion between 1952 to 1960.

  • The Cottagers are also aiming to win consecutive league matches against the Toffees for the first time since August 2005.
  • The Cottagers' tally of 15 league wins in 2022-23 was their second highest in a top-flight season, bettered only by their haul of 17 in 1959-60.

  • Fulham won seven top-flight away fixtures last term, a new club record.

  • Their total of 54 goals is the most they have scored in a Premier League campaign, and their highest in a top-flight season since 1967-68.

  • They kept three consecutive clean sheets in the league at the start of February, but conceded at least once in 13 of their final 14 matches at the end of the season.

  • They won nine of their 10 league games in 2022-23 against the teams that finished in the bottom five of the table, only dropping points in a 0-0 home draw versus Everton in October.

  • Raul Jimenez has failed to score in his last 23 league appearances, but he has netted in five of his six top-flight appearances versus Everton.
  • Everton's tally of 36 points last season was their lowest in a Premier League season.

  • The Toffees have won five of their 18 league games under Sean Dyche.

  • The only time they scored multiple goals in their 19 league home matches in 2022-23 was a 3-0 win against Crystal Palace in October.

  • Everton lost 10 top-flight home fixtures last term - only Southampton, with 12 defeats, had a worse record.

  • The Toffees have drawn their opening game of a Premier League season more often than any other side, with 12 of their 31 matches ending level.


Source Oliver Thomas at SportsMole
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