After securing a narrow 1-0 win at West Ham on Sunday, Everton now host Sean Dyche’s former team Burnley tomorrow night in the next round of the Carabao Cup.
At the London Stadium, the Toffees were determined, hard-working and resolute in defence before Dominic Calvert-Lewin grabbed a goal that gave the visitors a lead they never relinquished.
It was a classic away performance from Everton and one that we have become very familiar with during Dyche’s tenure.
The Blues have been far better on the road than at home in this campaign and have won at Brentford, Aston Villa and now West Ham, while also coming back with a point from Sheffield United.
That Villa win was of course in the last round of the Carabao Cup and put the Toffees through to face Burnley tomorrow.
But, tomorrow’s match takes place at Goodison Park where Everton have struggled so badly this season with only a solitary victory against Bournemouth and defeats to Fulham, Wolves, Arsenal and Luton Town.
While Dyche’s tactics and approach is very well-suited to playing away from home where the Blues will likely concede possession and have to defend for long periods, it doesn’t work anywhere near as well at home where the pressure is for his team to be on top.
So the challenge for the manager is to find a way to balance the continuing need for a solidly robust and organised side with the demand for a more attacking attitude from his team in front of its supporters.
For many Premier League clubs the Carabao Cup is a bit of free hit giving them a chance to experiment with their team and tactics.
However, for Everton the competition represents basically the only albeit still very slim chance of making a final let alone winning a trophy.
It also represents a chance for Dyche’s side to get some momentum going too and for him to look again at some of his fringe players, particularly attacking individuals such as Arnaut Danjuma and Beto.
The Portuguese striker has fallen down the pecking order since Calvert-Lewin’s return to full fitness, and didn’t even get on late against West Ham with the manager preferring to give Youssef Chermiti a run out.
This would indicate that Beto will surely start tomorrow evening with DCL getting a deserved rest.
As for Danjuma, he also hasn’t played much at all recently and there is just a feeling that perhaps Dyche doesn’t really fancy him, prefering instead to go with Dwight McNeil and Jack Harrison on the flanks.
Well, hopefully both will get the opportunity tomorrow to try and impress the boss and scoring a goal each would obviously be the ideal way to do so.
Presumably Dyche will be keen to get one over on his former employers and if Everton can start with real energy and commitment and get on the front foot, hopefully they can grab an early goal or two and put the tie to bed relatively quickly.