Everton Season Preview | Premier League Betting Breakdown

Everton Season Preview | Premier League Betting Breakdown article feature image

Chris Brunskill/Getty. Pictured: Sean Dyche.

Welcome to Action Network's Premier League team previews, where our soccer experts will break down each and every Premier League team ahead of the season, which starts on August 11. Next up, we have the Toffees, Everton.

Team Breakdown

Everton took their survival into the final week of the season for the second consecutive season in May. Two years ago, the Toffees beat Palace to secure safety three days before the season ended. Last year, the Toffees beat Bournemouth, 1-0, on the final day of the campaign at Goodison Park. 

Sean Dyche came in midseason and stabilized the Toffees to keep them up. Although it’s been a quiet summer in terms of transfers, the Toffees played at a level under Dyche that should have fans optimistic about improved performance in 2023-24.

Dominic Calvert-Lewin hasn’t been able to stay fit for Everton for most of the last two seasons, but there’s still some upside in the attack as he begins the season with a clean bill of health. Despite battling all of the injuries, Calvert-Lewin has consistently produced around 0.5 xG per 90 in the minutes he has played. 

He’s only played 27 90s in the last two seasons combined, but maybe this is the year he manages to play 20-25 matches and score 10+ goals once again. Relying on him is a dangerous bet for the Toffees, but the main summer addition was Arnaut Danjuma as a wide forward to supplement him. 

Danjuma peaked in his 2021-22 season at Villarreal with 0.86 xG + xA per 90. He’ll probably never reach those levels again, but he can do a little bit of passing and shooting around the penalty area to help boost a very middling attack last season.

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The main reason for optimism with the Toffees was the functional midfield last year. Alex Iwobi, Idrissa Gana Gueye and Amadou Onana offered a ton of ball winning and pressing ability. Those three gave Dyche some tactical flexibility to play less like his Burnley teams and more on the front foot trying to force high turnovers and turn that into attacking opportunities. 

Jordan Pickford remains a plus shot stopper, which, compared to the rest of the keepers in the bottom third of the league, is a benefit. Dyche didn’t really improve Everton’s defense, but he did make them a more high-event side than they previously had been.

The Toffees had a -0.69 xG difference per 90 in all of the pre-Dyche matches last season. After his arrival in late January, Everton played the rest of the season at a -0.31 xG difference per-90 rate. That doesn’t seem like a huge difference, but that’s relegation form versus lower mid-table form.

Betting Breakdown

If Everton replicate their play this season from the final four months of the last season, they won’t be in the relegation picture. The narrative surrounding the Toffees is that since they were in the relegation battle into the final week each of the last two years, this might be the year they finally get burnt and go down. Given the squad talent and the high floor that Dyche provides for them, I’m more bullish than the market on Everton. 

In fact, a somewhat healthy season from Calvert-Lewin and more goal scoring production from him could see them finishing closer to the top half than the bottom three. The bottom half of the table could be as jam-packed and unpredictable as ever, and there’s few managers I trust more than Dyche in those situations. It was only when the talent totally bottomed out and aged out that Burnley went down under him. 

Picks: Everton higher than Fulham (-120), Everton over 42 points (+150)

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