Everton face a tough home game against Chelsea at Goodison Park in Saturday’s evening Premier League kick-off.
Toffees boss Roberto Martinez has expressed his concerns at his teams early of lack of goals, but is looking for his side to convert the chances when they are presented with them.
The Spaniard told Sky Sports: “We need to realise you shouldn’t need so many chances to score a goal.
“When you don’t score goals, the first thing you ask is – do we create enough? It becomes a big problem if you haven’t got the way of playing to get into the final third with a real threat.
“But that hasn’t been the case – if you look at the amount of corners, good opportunities we have had.
“We are really excited and looking forward to making sure we convert those chances. We could easily be sitting here now with nine points. Now it is time to finish the performance off with goals.”
At times this was a problem that Martinez’s Wigan side also had in his four years in charge of the Latics. They played pretty football, but could not quite find a way of making the most of their chances.
Martinez has instilled his way of playing on his team and the team seem to be responding to his ideas and keeping the ball well. The only problem is that the Toffees players have not been able to make their chances count.
Everton could and probably should have won the last two games, as they drew consecutive top-flight games goalless. If one of those chances would have been converted then everybody would be looking at a great start to Martinez’s time in charge of the club.
The feeling is that if Everton had a striker up front with bit of confidence in the team, then they would have scored more goals this season.
Everton do create chances, playing possession football. The likes of midfielders Kevin Mirallas, Leon Osman and Steven Pienaar are all creative players. While full-backs Seamus Coleman and Leighton Baines are very good at going forward.
Everton’s strikers Nikica Jelavic and Arouna Kone have made a slow start to the season for different reasons. Jelavic’s crisis of confidence goes back to last season when he struggled to replicate his form from the previous season.
The Croatian looks bereft of confidence, despite getting goals in pre-season and looking start. Everybody knows what he is capable of when on-form, but he just cannot seem to regain the confidence needed to get on the scoresheet.
New striker Arouna Kone does not look to have settled down at the club just yet. The Ivory Coast international was Wigan’s top scorer last season and was one of their best players. Kone has been second choice behind Jelavic in the pecking order this season, which has not helped the striker to find that clinical edge.
Martinez has increased his attacking options with the very shrewd loan signing of Belgium international Romelu Lukaku, ironically from today’s opponents. Lukaku could be the solution for the lack of goals at Everton.
Lukaku is not eligible to face his parent club today, but could score a lot of goals in an Everton side that do create a lot of chances. The youngster has all the attributes to be a great striker. However, he is still very raw.
Some Everton fans did not seem to be happy with the clubs signings of midfielders Gareth Barry and James McCarthy. However, the pair looks like shrewd additions to the Toffees midfield to me. Both players have strengths needed in the Premier League.
The pair had better pass conversion rates in the top-flight last season than any of the Toffees midfielders. Marouane Fellaini will be a loss to the team, but the two new players fit-in well with Martinez’s style of play. Everton’s squad is now stronger than last season and fits in with Roberto Martinez’s philosophy on football.
The goals will come for Martinez and Everton. Whether those goals will come in today’s clash against in-form Chelsea remains to be seen. The Spaniard has changed the style of play at Everton and the players seemed to have reacted really well to the change.
All that has been missing from Everton’s play in the last two games has been goals. With the players available to Martinez then the goals will come, it is just a matter of time.
Can Martinez find a solution to lack of goals at Everton?