14th May, 2023 @ 05:41 am
Everton took a significant step toward Premier League (PL) survival on Monday night when they defeated high-flying Brighton 5-1. That was the first time they'd scored five goals on the road since Boxing Day 2018, and manager Sean Dyche will be hoping it's a sign of his attack resurging because goals have been few on their own turf this season - they've scored more than once in only one Premier League home game.
Everton's victory lifted them out of the bottom three, and they will now enter the gameweek two points clear of the drop zone. Maintaining this positive attitude against champions Manchester City appears to be a difficult task, but the Toffees delivered another attacking masterclass and struck Pep Guardiola's men for four goals without reply in a memorable win back in 2017.
That was Everton's last victory over Manchester City, who have dominated this rivalry ever since, winning ten of the past 12 competitive games. They are also on a ten-game winning streak in the Premier League, a feat that Guardiola has already accomplished five times, and no other manager in the competition's history can match as many 10-game winning streaks.
However, with this encounter sandwiched between two critical Champions League semi-finals, City will face a difficult task. Their 1-1 draw at the Santiago Bernabéu in midweek keeps the tie against Real Madrid alive and well, therefore we could see a slew of changes from the away team in an attempt to add fresh legs ahead of the second leg. However, with a one-point advantage over Arsenal at the top, Guardiola may be concerned about interrupting momentum.
Players to watch: Key creator Alex Iwobi has eight Premier League assists this season, more than any Everton player since 2016/17. Riyad Mahrez has been in similarly good form for City, with four assists in his previous three Premier League games - he also set up Erling Haaland's goal in the reverse (1-1).
Everton have won just four of their last 46 Premier League games against teams that start the day atop the standings, although one of those came against Arsenal in Dyche's first game in charge.