Everton vs. Manchester United: Who makes it to the combined XI?

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James Rodriguez has been the talismanic presence that Everton have craved for years.

Right-Wing: James Rodriguez vs Mason Greenwood

James Rodriguez has to be the choice. The Colombian magician has probably been one of the best players in the Premier League since he joined the Toffees and he seems to have not lost any of that magic from the 2014 World Cup.

He was hugely underutilized by a stacked Real Madrid team and got his chance to impress Ancelotti at Bayern, which lead to where we are now. James’ impact is clear as I have previously mentioned; without him, our attack seems to stall and even though I do think Mason Greenwood has the potential to be world-class one day, I think that’s as a centre-forward, not a wide player.

Even though James was expected to play in the traditional number 10 role, Ancelotti has played him in more of a traditional winger role. James has still taken responsibility for that role as Everton’s key playmaker and has thrived under the pressure with 3 goals and 3 assists in his 6 appearances and a monster 8.10 rating, which puts him 3rd in the Premier League only behind Harry Kane and Jack Grealish.

Greenwood, on the other hand, impressed massively last season where he grabbed 10 Premier League goals in his first full season for Manchester United. He hasn’t been able to get on the scoresheet yet, in the league, but the goals are bound to come soon.

Even though I think Greenwood is one of the most exciting prospects in the world right now, I still can’t put him above King James for this spot in the team.

Right-wing: James Rodriguez

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Striker: Dominic Calvert-Lewin vs Anthony Martial

This would have probably been the other way around if I made this list towards the end of last season but after Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s surge to the top of the golden boot race and Anthony Martial’s slow start in the league, I think you have to give it to the Englishman.

Calvert-Lewin has been one of the most in-form men in England this year, scoring 8 goals in his 7 league appearances and causing defences havoc all across the country. Martial, on the other hand, hasn’t managed to find the back of the net this season. It’s clear after Martial’s 17 goal and 6 assist season in 19/20 that he can be fantastic in that striker role, but he just hasn’t been able to get off to a start good enough to rival Calvert-Lewin right now. So, the Toffees frontman takes the number 9 position.

Striker: Dominic Calvert-Lewin

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(Photo by ANTHONY DEVLIN/AFP via Getty Images) /

Left-Wing: Richarlison vs Marcus Rashford

This was extremely close, but fantastic footballer and human being, Marcus Rashford MBE has to take our left-wing position. Rashford has been United’s most pivotal player and has handled the pressure tremendously for somebody who’s still only 23 years old. Rashford currently has 2 goals and 2 assists in the league, his passion for the club and willingness to pour his heart into the game is why he’s been able to handle all this pressure.

Moving him out to the wing was a great decision for Manchester United. Rashford is coming off a 17 goal and 7 assist season and is probably looking to top that this year and finally reach that 20 league goal mark we all know he has the talent to achieve.

Richarlison has also had a great start to the season, before his poor challenge on Thiago in the Merseyside Derby. In his 5 appearances, he has 1 goal and 2 assists, but it’s been his presence off the ball that has really helped Everton tick this year, Richarlison can drag defenders away to make more space for players like Calvert-Lewin or James, and his value to the team has been abundantly clear in the Southampton and Newcastle games.

Both of these players are going to be world-class, but Rashford is currently the better player and will a great footballer and an even better samaritan to this eleven.

Left wing: Marcus Rashford

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(Photo by ANDY RAIN/AFP via Getty Images) /

Manager: Carlo Ancelotti vs Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

This has to be clear to everybody, Solskjaer seems to have this magic ability to perform whenever his job is under pressure, but it’s not quite 3 Champions Leagues and being one of the most decorated managers in history. Ancelotti made an instant impact as soon as he joined the Toffees and every Evertonian loves him for it. He gets the best out of all of the players and even though Everton have had recent bumps in the road, that was without multiple key players.

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Ole has seemed to constantly underperform in the league, with Manchester United currently being stuck down in 15th, while Everton are currently 4th, so I know which manager I would like in the dugout for this combined XI.