Pre-season training starts with half a squad

Monday, 1 July, 2019 32comments  |  Jump to last
A cadre of Everton players returned to Finch Farm this morning to begin pre-season training for the new campaign that kicks off at Crystal Palace on 10 August.

However, missing from this group are all the internationals who have been or are currently participating in international competitions across the globe:

  • Idrissa Gana Gueye and Henry Onyekuru are at the African Cup of Nations.
  • Richarlison is at Copa America while Yerry Mina will be travelling back to Merseyside soon following Colombia's exit .
  • Kieran Dowell and Dominic Calvert-Lewin exited early from the U21 championships and could be afforded a break while Jonjoe Kenny is set to leave for Germany to link up with the Schalke team where he will begin a season-long loan.
  • Cuco Martina was captaining Curaçao in the Gold Cup until their exit at the hands of the United States last night.

The players returning include a number who spent most or all of last season out on loan at other clubs because they did not figure in Marco Silva's plans. The list is long and includes players whose Everton futures are shrouded in uncertainty, but they are still under contract and, in many cases, lucrative wages with the Blues mean they have not yet been moved on:

Maarten Stekelenburg, Matthew Pennington, Luke Garbutt, Muhamed Besic, Kieran Dowell, Yannick Bolasie, Shani Tarashaj, Kevin Mirallas, Oumar Niasse, Sandro Ramirez, and Cenk Tosun.

The senior squad is smaller at this point due to the departure of Phil Jagielka, with Kurt Zouma's future at Everton or Chelsea still to be decided by their new manager Frank Lampard, who is expected to make a decision this week. Jonas Lössl and Gomes is the only addition to last season's team so far...

This leaves room for potentially promising players from the Everton Academy to step up and impress the manager before the stars return. Goal machine for the Under-18s, Ellis Simms, has already been tagged for participation in the pre-season tour.

Others we could see making the step up include Morgan Feeny, Antony Evans, Manasse Mampala and Nathanangelo Markelo (see link below)..


Reader Comments (32)

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Jack Convery
1 Posted 01/07/2019 at 17:53:41
I wonder what the initiation will be for Jonas? Looking at the goldfish in the toilet!!!
Rob Marsh
2 Posted 01/07/2019 at 17:57:13
Why bother?

Other than the 1st team, kids and Cenk Tosun, they're wingnuts and wingdings. Give them a ball and send them over to one of the 5-aside pitches, so they don't get in the way.

Martin Berry
3 Posted 01/07/2019 at 20:10:39
It just shows what a lot of sorting out has still to be done. Also, some tired players will be returning from other summer competitions.

I am fascinated as to who will be turning out against Crystal Palace in 6 weeks time?

John Hammond
4 Posted 01/07/2019 at 20:19:21
Martin, mostly if not the exact same team that ended the season should we purchase Zouma. There'll be enough time for a rest then they'll be back on it.
Gerard Carey
5 Posted 01/07/2019 at 20:28:15
Forgot about Cuco Martina. Certainly a lot of deadwood to move on.

With possibly a similar first team squad to last season, it's going to be a slow process to move up the table. We definitely need some kind of a seasoned striker to get anywhere.

Steavey Buckley
6 Posted 01/07/2019 at 20:40:24
All internationals should take place after the CHampions League Final and give enough time for players to be ready for their clubs for the start of the new season.

At present, Gueye is playing for Senegal tonight. But then he will be ready for the new season, which will be disrupted again some time in September for a new round of international matches. During this period of disruption, will Everton have a team ready and match fit for a new season?

Bill Gienapp
7 Posted 01/07/2019 at 20:50:21
Wow, is Shani Tarashaj actually at Finch Farm?
Fran Mitchell
8 Posted 01/07/2019 at 21:33:28
Steavey, we moaned when Afcon was in January, now we moan that it is in the summer.

There is a lot of football these days, international tournaments are almost a yearly event. Hence the need for bigger squads so players don't suffer burnout.

But hey, Liverpool's attacking 3 will all be delayed at starting pre season as they are all still on international duty. Which should keep them nice and tired for the new season.

Now the pre season has started, be interesting to see what young lads impress.

Steavey Buckley
9 Posted 01/07/2019 at 22:09:21
Fran, pre-season is going through football gears until the 1st league game of the season. But as it stands, key players will be missing until the beginning of the new season.
Andrew Ellams
10 Posted 01/07/2019 at 22:17:03
52 countries playing in continental tournaments this summer, not including the U21s. There will be a lot of half-empty dressing rooms for a few weeks. The AFCON doesn't finish until the 19th.
Phillip Warrington
11 Posted 01/07/2019 at 22:24:29
Shani Tarashaj... what a shame when we first signed him he had just broke into the Swiss national team. the Swiss national team at that time were no mugs and then went backwards when he came to Everton. Which happens to a lot of overseas players when they come to Everton, because we loan our promising players to lower division teams in England.

The top four clubs in the Premier League don't they try and loan their promising players to teams overseas where they have a more than better opportunity of playing first-team football. Kenny will return a better player after a loan in Germany and Lookman would have been had he stayed another year in Germany instead of cooling his heels on the bench.
David Pearl
12 Posted 01/07/2019 at 22:47:43
I actually think it's pointless starting with half a squad. Come on Brands!
Kase Chow
13 Posted 01/07/2019 at 23:09:03
Rob #2


Iain Johnston
14 Posted 01/07/2019 at 00:05:52
The only addition to last season's team is Lössl. We've forked out 㿂M for Gomes in order to maintain our midfield, not improve it.

If (big if) we include Zouma, we'll be paying the best part of 㿞M just to keep the same team as last season. We did the same with Lukaku, we signed him to keep what we had rather than move on to better things.

Don't get me wrong – I think signing Gomes for only 㿂M whilst receiving 㾺M for Vlasic is really good business, savvy even, but so far our ongoing squad depth and quality concerns continue... the former highlighted even more now with Kenny heading to Germany.

Calvert-Lewin is improving, his old style centre-forward play and distribution are coming on great... but we still need a quick clinical finisher plus another solid consistent centre-back... and yet two thirds of the transfer window is gone.

Mike Gaynes
15 Posted 02/07/2019 at 00:33:27
Iain, the Premier League transfer window closes at 5pm on 8 August.

We all know the Everton transfer window opens at 4:45 that same day.

Kevin Prytherch
16 Posted 02/07/2019 at 07:54:29
Iain, there's also a lot to be said for continuity. We finished the season strongly with a team that was getting better after a year together. They were also a young team with a number of new players (six, I think). We have a good team and a decent squad with back up nearly everywhere.

At present I'm not sure what we'd do if Sigurdsson or Calvert-Lewin we're injured, so I would be looking in those positions.

I also think we struggle against teams who sit back, perhaps someone like Dowell as a deep-lying playmaker could help here. This is where I'd like to see us snap up someone like Tammy Abraham, who is cleverer with his runs than Calvert-Lewin is and may get more chances against these teams.

Otherwise, we should be looking at one in, one out, and maintaining the core of the team.

Hugh Jenkins
17 Posted 02/07/2019 at 08:35:21
Iain (#14),

Brands said some time ago that he and Silva had their list of "targets" set long before the season's end. We know that Gomes and Zouma were on it – but given that the Africa Cup of Nations and Copa America are still running, if (and I assume they are) some of our targets are still involved in the latter stages, then most players won't consider transfers until those tournaments end.

So, hopefully it's a case of "watch this space" for now.

Dan Nulty
18 Posted 02/07/2019 at 08:59:45
I love that Markelo calls him Mr Usworth. Shows respect, some kids really are brought up well.
James Lauwervine
19 Posted 02/07/2019 at 09:52:33
I trust in Brands to deliver. The business he's done so far has been impressive. We're one year into a 3- to 5-year plan, I'd say.
George Cumiskey
20 Posted 02/07/2019 at 10:41:55
Mike Gaynes – brilliant, spot on. Lol
Derek Knox
21 Posted 02/07/2019 at 11:08:07
David @12, you know the old saying "half a squad is better than none" – just wait till the others arrive. :-)

Mike G @15, as long as we don't sign any of the USA squad. I watched them against Curacao, what a snore/bore/dung fest, they even managed to make Cuco look okay, but at least the result gets you to the next stage. :-)

Brian Harrison
22 Posted 02/07/2019 at 11:47:30
Seems strange that many of the Premier League clubs will be back for pre-season training this week, yet many Premier League players are still playing for their Countries in the AFCON or Copa America. This season for the first time we have the winter break, will be interesting to see what effect that has.

It seems that organisations are making more and more demands on players, Fifa wanted to increase the number of teams in the World Cup to 64 which was voted against. Uefa many years ago changed the European Cup from Champions playing in a straight forward knock-out competition, to group stages with a lot more teams involved. Shows the nonsense of it when this year's winners actually lost 3 games.

Uefa officials are still trying to float this idea of a cartel of 20 clubs competing for the Champions league every year with no relegation. Both Uefa competitions are seeded which is another way of maintaining the cartel, on their money making quest.

Rob Marsh
23 Posted 02/07/2019 at 12:23:46
Mike Gaynes # 15

Here's proof of EFC's swift & decisive manoeuvrings in the transfer market.

This headline says it all:

Everton confirm final signing almost 24 hours after window closes

Kris Boner
24 Posted 02/07/2019 at 12:24:08
Rumour has that an offer has been made for Sandro Ramirez. I wonder how much we are going to pay him to leave?
Ray Roche
25 Posted 02/07/2019 at 12:24:26
It makes sense NOT to buy any players who are involved in International tournaments until the competition finishes. Imagine the meltdown on here if we bought a player who then suffered a cruciate ligament injury playing for Senegal or similar.

The winter break. An excuse to fly to another continent to play “exhibition” matches and make a shedload of money.

Rest, my arse!

Rob Marsh
26 Posted 02/07/2019 at 12:26:50
Kris Boner # 24

Thripence ha'penny and a few brass washers!

Derek Knox
27 Posted 02/07/2019 at 12:56:01
Kris, I saw that too, I'll believe it when it happens, how the hell are we going to manage without him? Where are all those goals going to come from? Wonder if they will have a testimonial for him? :-)
Clarence Yurcan
28 Posted 02/07/2019 at 16:54:16
Shani Tarshaj still with the club? Remember him??
Neil Cremin
29 Posted 03/07/2019 at 19:06:32
Such a pleasure reading such negativity on this thread. Should the whole squad wait until the Internationals return.
Tony Hill
30 Posted 05/07/2019 at 21:38:08
Very pleasing to see Baningime in the squad for Kenya. Not 21 until September, this young man has great talent and a unique, graceful style which I would have thought suits Silva's expectations very well.

I don't care about his loan last season, he is lovely to watch. I don't know about his temperament but at his age he must be allowed to mature.

Great, actually, to see so many of our promising young players getting this experience.

Paul Birmingham
31 Posted 05/07/2019 at 22:00:02
Good news re Beni, and hopefully he'll kick on with us.

There's a player there and if he takes the game by the scruff of the neck, who knows.

MS & MB, must see some real genuine good signs, improving, and hopefully he'll kick into first team squad this season.

He has showed balance, tackling and passing that in my view was superior to other players of his age group.

But that's only my view and what's happened the last 18 months is history.

Common Beni.

Tony Hill
32 Posted 05/07/2019 at 22:19:20
Yes, it's the balance, Paul, and the touch and the unhurried awareness of space. Beautiful.

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