U23s beat Blackburn Rovers

Monday, 16 September, 2019 23comments  |  Jump to last

Everton's Under-23s returned to action this evening and came out with a 2-1 win over Blackburn thanks to an Ellis Simms winner.

Lewis Gibson's first-half goal was cancelled out by Rankin-Costello but when Anthony Gordon put Simms into the clear, the striker converted the deciding goal with 15 minutes to go.

Everton U23s: Tyrer, Denny (56' Mampala), Foulds, Baningime [Y], Feeney (75' Astley), Gibson (68' Simms), Adeniran, Charsley, Gordon, Markelo [Y], Evans. Subs not Used: Barrett, Iversen.


Reader Comments (23)

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Peter Gorman
1 Posted 17/09/2019 at 01:52:31
The scoreline flattered Blackburn who were only really in it during the 2nd half. Everton even hit the post 3 times.

Good news from the game:

1) Anthony Gordon has quick feet and a quicker brain.

2) Ellis Simms can really FINISH! Introduced as a sub when the side was struggling to get the winner and duly put it way with great composure.

3) Beni Baningime is back! A brilliant performance from him, always composed despite early booking, plenty of interceptions and even some good skill to create chances at the other end.

Bad news from the game;

Both Feeney and Gibson came off injured. Fingers crossed there is nothing serious.

Ajay Gopal
2 Posted 17/09/2019 at 05:47:16
Thanks, Peter, for the good news. Very happy to hear that Baningime is back! Can he rescue his career at Everton? Maybe a loan out to the German Bundesliga will prepare him nicely for the Premier League.
Phill Thompson
3 Posted 17/09/2019 at 09:38:45
Peter, agree Beni was MotM for me though Gordon was class throughout. At this level, we probably only need Beni as the player sitting in front of the back four, he does it so well. Only negative is that's he's really outgrown the U23s and needs a loan.

It was good to see Simms playing so well in the short time he was on, he's a match-winner at this level. He came on at 1-1 but I can't help thinking if we'd have gone 2-1 up and no injuries then only Astley would have come on and Unsworth would have tried to defend a lead.

With the midfield and defence we've got, we could afford to let Simms, Gordon, and Evans off the leash as attackers. Don't get me started on why Charsley is still starting though!

Brent Stephens
4 Posted 17/09/2019 at 09:56:49
Thanks for the comments, guys. I couldn't get to the game so good to hear Beni continues his comeback, Gordon continues to impress, and Simms will excite.
David Pearl
5 Posted 17/09/2019 at 10:29:54
Yes, it is good to hear Beni getting back to fitness and form so he can take another crack.

Also good to hear we have a manager at some level that knows what the aim of each match is. (It's 3 points… shhh!)

Sam Hoare
6 Posted 17/09/2019 at 10:31:39
Agreed, Phill. Why on earth is Charsley starting when he is out of contract and has no future at the club?!

Astley is highly rated and should surely be starting these games or else his development is stalling. Too much sentiment?

Increasingly I'm a firm believer that U23 football should only be for 18- to 20-year-olds with the rest heading out on loan if at all possible. Winning the PL2 is all very good but I would far rather we produce more players ready to help the first team. We've not had one from the academy in the last 2-3 years since Dowell, Davies and Kenny made their debuts.

Dave Abrahams
7 Posted 17/09/2019 at 11:20:44
Phill (3), how did Lewis Gibson perform apart from his goal?
Kevin Prytherch
8 Posted 17/09/2019 at 11:32:08
I can see some logic in starting the season with more senior U23s, it sends a message that the younger players have to show consistency and improvement to oust them, which they would have to do to break into the first team.

Last season, we started with Browning and Galloway, and it was up to the likes of Feeney, Gibson, Astley etc to prove they were good enough – which they did.

Phill Thompson
9 Posted 17/09/2019 at 16:35:17
Dave #7, yeah he was fine but nothing spectacular; that said, “Wow, he should be in the Premier League squad”.

But to put that into perspective he was ill, sick at half time I think, but insisted on going out 2nd half only to be replaced. That kind of attitude will endear himself to Unsworth.

David Chait
10 Posted 17/09/2019 at 16:40:26
Very disappointing team selection. Too many players that aren't going to make it hindering the progress of others.

Unreal Simms goes from being a record-breaker to sitting on the bench for players clearly not making it in our club.

I'm far less bothered this season about the results than seeing development and the next generation coming through...

Dave Abrahams
11 Posted 17/09/2019 at 16:54:36
Phill (9), thanks Phill.
Peter Gorman
12 Posted 17/09/2019 at 22:44:24
David @10 – Simms was on the bench because Unsy started with only one up front – Anthony Gordon.

Yes, the good news is that Gordon can play a variety of roles but so far he has done a great job up-front so there has not been a pressing need to accommodate Simms. No player 'not making it in our club' is standing in his way, he will play when the tactics require his skillset.

Dave Abrahams
14 Posted 20/09/2019 at 20:06:22
Still 1-0 at half time, Gordon had another chance but never connected properly and Feeney could have done better with a header from 6 yards,

Meanwhile in Germany Jonjoe is having another good game, they are saying, on tv. He has worked really hard during the international break to get to know his teammates better.

While back here in Liverpool, Schneiderlin is still ambling through games, not giving a toss about his teammates or anyone else for that matter.

Jay Wood

15 Posted 20/09/2019 at 20:39:40
Can't help with a link to the U-23 game, but here's a link to Kenny's game with Schalke for anyone interested, his team leading 1-0 and the team being praised by the commentators.


Tony Hill
17 Posted 20/09/2019 at 20:55:09
Early days, Jay, but I'm delighted with how Kenny is doing there. He is a fine young man and I have a feeling that this could be the making of him. Let's hope we benefit in the end.
Jay Wood

19 Posted 20/09/2019 at 21:41:49
Did you watch the game on some feed Dave, or just followed a text report?

Yes, Tony. The commentators on the link I shared spoke glowingly of JJK, describing how he has got a high match rating in every single game he has played since joining Schalke. They speculated who did the fine job of scouting him, but I'm pretty sure that was the manager, ex-Huddersfield man David Wagner, himself.

He said a few weeks ago when he took on the job they needed a right back and he immediately thought of JJK but wasn't sure a loan deal could be agreed with Everton, but was delighted when it did come off.

With 10 minutes to go they put up a quick graphic showing - from right back, remember - JJK had had more touches than any other Schalke player, won 77% of his challenges and had a pass success rate of 82%.

It's stretching it a bit to say he 'assisted' the winning goal for Schalke in the dying minutes because it was a goal of such individual brilliance, but it WAS JJK who made the pass the goalscorer scored from.

The commentators asked a very telling question: if he continues getting game time and the adulation he does from the fans, will he even want to return to sitting on the bench at Everton come the end of the season?

This one needs careful monitoring and handling. What is very noticable is that increasingly, Seamus tends to stand off more from his man and gets backed up towards our penalty area, whereas (again) tonight, JJK is right on the back or toes of his man AND getting his foot in.

And can any of our 'merican cousins give me the low down on Schalke's Weston McKennie? I've taken to watching Schalke this season because of JJK and the combative midfielder always stands out. Good engine. Fierce in the tackle. Technically sound. More than 50 appearances in the Bundesliga having just turned 21 in August. Full Yankie international.


Dave Abrahams
20 Posted 20/09/2019 at 22:04:26
Jay (19), just followed a text Jay.

Made up for Jonjoe, hope he keeps it up, never really trusted by Koeman, Allardyce or Silva, not going to say too much more about him, we've all seen him at Everton, some like him, some are not so sure, others, and there are quite a few have completely wrote him off, don't know if the Frenchman will do a good job, hope he does, Seamus, unfortunately is not having a good season, I hope he comes back and proves himself once again.

I hope we win tomorrow, Bournemouth have just clinched their win over Southampton after a comical Laurel and Hardie cock up by the home team, after Southampton had outplayed them in the second half.

Tony Hill
21 Posted 20/09/2019 at 22:06:08
He looks happy and composed, Jay, and I must say the team around him is keen and impressive.
Dave Abrahams
22 Posted 20/09/2019 at 22:23:07
Jay (19)would you swap McKennie for Jonjoe? please don't say yes!!!
Mike Gaynes
23 Posted 20/09/2019 at 22:24:52
Jay #19, McKennie is considered core to the US midfield of the future, alongside Pulisic. He is a dynamo with excellent skills whose development as an attacker has been slightly sidetracked at Schalke because he spent so much of last season as an emergency right back (thus the importance of the Kenny loan). He could be a #6 or #8 for the US depending on how his creative skills develop, but he's already the second name on every US team sheet. Needs only to keep his fires banked -- tends to accumulate yellow cards and confrontations with opponents.

Dave #22, I'd certainly have him in our starting lineup tomorrow ahead of Schneiderlin or Gomes.

Jay Wood

24 Posted 20/09/2019 at 23:10:43
Thanks for that Mike. Confirms my impression of him of the Schalke games I've seen this season. And just turned 21. Impressive.

I didn't realise he played emergency right back last season, thus the recruitment of JJK. And he was subbed off tonight because...he was on a yellow already, but wasn't compromising his tackling game and was in danger of picking up a second yellow, further confirmation of what you said.

And rest assured Dave, NO! I want JJK back at Everton and a fixture (and possible future captain..?) at right back for years to come. But I see where you're coming from. As Mike says, McKennie would be a good addition to our squad based on the (very little) I've seen of him. WOULD Brands trade JJK to land McKennie in his wheeling-dealing world?

It would be nice to see BOTH of them in the Blue of Everton next season, rather than the Blue of Schalke. But that's a long, long way off. Let's dull the Blades tomorrow.

Dave Abrahams
25 Posted 21/09/2019 at 09:05:54
Mike (23), Mike I'd definitely have you ahead of Schneiderlin, or John McFarlane who is eighty, you'd both play your hearts out instead of poisoning the team with his lack of effort.
Dave Abrahams
26 Posted 21/09/2019 at 09:07:39
I apologise for the above post, sorry John I should have said you were eighty one.

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