Everton host Tottenham in the FA Cup at Goodison Park on Wednesday night. Carlo Ancelotti is looking to win his second FA Cup having lifted the trophy in 2010 with Chelsea whilst Jose Mourinho won the famous competition in 2007. Both teams are pushing to finish in the UEFA Champions League places this season but winning a trophy would be massive achievement too.
Everton beat Rotherham 2-1 and Sheffield Wednesday to reach this stage. In the league, their form has been inconsistent of late. After four league wins in a row in December, Everton have won two, drawn two and lost two of their next six.
The side has been on a loss-win-draw then loss-win-draw run with the latter run summing up their form. They lost 2-0 at home to Newcastle in a very poor display, then won 2-1 away at Leeds after playing very well. In their last match, they drew 3-3 with Man Utd despite long spells where they were under pressure in the second half. A 95th minute goal by Dominic Calvert-Lewin rescued a point.
Everton Team News
Carlo Ancelotti has picked close to his best XI in both rounds of the FA Cup so far despite facing two opponents from the Championship. He is therefore expected to play his best available lineup for this match. James Rodriguez is a doubt after injuring his calf against Man Utd so Alex Iwobi is expected to come into the lineup. Josh King is cup-tied.
Allan remains missing in midfield and Jordan Pickford is doubtful. If the latter is fit, then he could start as Robin Olsen was less than convincing against Man Utd. Gylfi Sigurdsson is likely to be in the starting XI with Tom Davies missing out.
Very high. Ancelotti is clearly giving this trophy a lot of priority as he sees it as winnable. Therefore, going to extra time should not be big concern if that’s what it takes to progress. They could therefore play a little more conservatively to guard against Spurs’ threat on the counter attack.
Spurs beat Marine 5-0 and Wycombe 4-1 away from home to make it to this round. In the league, Jose Mourinho’s side have been a mess of late with five defeats in their last ten matches. Having won 3-1 at Sheffield United in mid-January, they lost their three subsequent matches: 3-1 at home to Liverpool, 1-0 away at Brighton and 1-0 at home to Chelsea.
With Harry Kane back and fit again for their last match, they beat West Brom 2-0 at home. Kane and Son on target.
Tottenham Team News
Mourinho takes the domestic cup competitions very seriously and therefore a full strength side is expected. Kane is likely to start his second match in four days after an ankle injury. Dele Alli is nearing a return to action but this match may come too soon for him.
Still missing are Giovani Lo Celso in midfield and Sergio Reguilon at left back. It remains to be seen if Mourinho will give Gareth Bale any minutes in this match having left him as an unused substitute in the last two league matches.
Very high. Mourinho will stress the importance of this match to his squad and make clear there is an opportunity to make it to a second domestic cup final this season.
Nothing in Mourinho’s usual approach is likely to change with his side sitting off, ceding possession and playing on the break. Spurs face Man City on Saturday so will want to avoid extra time in this match so expect to see the Portuguese coach throw on extra attackers if the scores are level with 20 minutes to go.
The Toffees have won 6 of their last 10 PL matches
Everton have won 2 of their last 8 home PL matches
Everton have seen under 2.5 goals in 5 of their last 6 home PL matches
Spurs have won 3 of their last 11 PL matches
Tottenham have won 1 of their last 6 away PL matches
Spurs have seen under 2.5 goals in 6 of their last 8 away PL matches
The last three meetings between these sides have seen under 2.5 goals
This looks set to be a cagey, tight cup match which either side could win. Everton are inconsistent but are probably in better form, are at home and have Ancelotti’s tactical nous to devise a plan to stop Kane and Son. The best tip looks to be a narrow home win.