After nine largely forgettable Premier League matches, Everton finally sacked Ronald Koeman after 16 months in charge. This season, Everton has a current 2-2-5 record and their eight points has them in 18th and in relegation. This after qualifying for the Europa League, finishing 7th last season.
— Everton (@Everton) October 23, 2017
The news of Koeman’s sacking isn’t that surprising and a 5-2 dismantling by Arsenal only continued that slide. Everton hasn’t won a game since September 23 and not only are they in a relegation spot, they are last in their Europa League group.
Koeman’s sacking was called for and while they probably should have sacked him a few games ago, Everton finally made the right move. But is this going to solve all of Everton’s problems? Probably not.
The big elephant in the room is that Everton sold their main source of goals, Romelu Lukaku, to Manchester United. Lukaku was looking at leaving and Everton found a team willing to pay top dollar for him so Everton cashed in at the right time. Everton’s issue is that while they made the right business move, they didn’t figure out who was going to score the goals.
With Lukaku’s £75 million (and then some), Everton bought goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, center back Michael Keane, midfielders Davy Klassen and Gylfi Sigurdsson and signed Wayne Rooney on a free. That’s great and all but it didn’t answer the lack of Lukaku. Rooney is a goalscorer but his best days have been behind him for years. Rooney adds to Everton, and getting him for free is always great, but he’s not getting you 25 goals a year as Lukaku did last season.
Of Everton’s 62 goals scored last season, Lukaku had 25 of them so he was responsible for 40% of Everton’s Premier League goalscoring. Harry Kane won the Golden Boot last season and even he was only responsible for 34% of Tottenham’s goals (29/86).
The fact is that Everton relied so heavily on Romelu Lukaku that they have no clue what to do now to get goals. Everton has seven goals in nine games this season. And while that isn’t exactly a killer (seven teams above Everton including Burnley with eight goals have single digit goals this season) their 18 goals conceded has trounced them too. So not only did they not use the Lukaku money to get a goalscorer, and now have to rely on Rooney and Dominic Calvert-Lewin, they squandered the money on all the other areas with the team and didn’t seem to improve them.
This team is a mess and while I still think they’ll survive relegation, it’s going to be a while before they get back to their solid top 10 form.