Stoke City Premier League - 12 August 2017


Stoke City Premier League - 12 August 2017

Everton's position has been weakened by long-term injuries to key players in defenders Seamus Coleman and Ramiro Funes Mori, plus midfielder Yannick Bolasie although Koeman is more concerned about adding to a list of specialist forwards which only consists of 22-year-old Spanish signing Sandro.

Republic of Ireland midfielder James McCarthy has been left out of Everton's squad for their Premier League opener against Stoke City as he continues his recovery from a knee injury.

The Toffees take on Stoke City for the opening game of the season at the Goodison Park.

Chelsea and Manchester United have both put their faith in big-money strikers as they bid to win the Premier League title this season.

With only one defeat to Stoke in the last five meetings and an unbeaten pre-season schedule that included a 2-0 aggregate Europa League victory over MFK Ruzomberok, Everton will be likely favourites for Saturday's match.

Manchester City have lavished untold riches on full-backs in the transfer window, but arguably their most important player this season will be captain Kompany.

Everton are a continual top-half Premier League club, but can not seem to break into the top four.

"Like everybody knows we are still working on some targets and that is hard, but if we can do the business we want I think we are stronger than last season".

Lukaku scored 25 goals last term and the likes of Rooney and another new signing, Sandro Ramirez, will have a tough act to follow.

Odds of 7-10 look good for a home win. "All being well, he should be with us today (Friday) at some point and hopefully we will get that done". We've just got to make sure we don't get wrapped up in that.

"It's always a close game when we play Everton - a draw and they won by a single goal last season".

However, in summer recruit Darren Fletcher and the understated Joe Allen, the Potters will have their own fairly dynamic midfield duo and will aim to disrupt Everton's flow on home turf.

It's what they have lost that is troubling. "We are looking forward to getting started". They've bought in players, spent money and they are having a go though, so fair play to them.



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