Gameweek 13 of the 2021/22 Premier League season will bring us a few intriguing fixtures, and one of them is Brentford vs Everton. The newly-promoted side takes on the Merseyside Blues, as both teams come into Sunday’s fixture, desperate for a win.
Brentford had a bright start for their first-ever Premier League campaign, as the Bees put out a solid performance on opening day to defeat Arsenal and send a warning to the rest of the league. However, they did not look the same after that, as they failed to get a win for the next three games. With this being their first-ever campaign, some would say the Bees have done a fairly decent job, being 14th in the table. However, not many would disagree that their recent form has been a cause of concern for all supporters and the club as well. The West London club have been winless since the first week of October, and have been able to earn just one point from the last 5 games. Shock defeats to Burnley and Norwich was followed by a six-goal thriller against Newcastle United last week. The Bees were unlucky to have come away with just a point from St. James’ Park, after taking the lead twice in what was a hugely captivating game.
Everton, like Brentford, had a brilliant start to the new season, under new manager Rafa Benitez, winning 3 of their first 4 games. Their form took a nosedive after that, winning just one of the last 8 games. The Toffees have picked up just two points from the last 18 available, and Benitez has come under severe pressure as a result. Unless the Spaniard can inspire his team and improve their form, his position at the club will come under fire and he will certainly be wary of the fact. Everton were thoroughly beaten by Man City last time out, when the defending champions ran out 3-0 winners at the Etihad, a game in which they completely dominated the Toffees. That result left Everton in 11th position in the table, eight points behind 4th placed West Ham United.
WHEN AND WHERE?
Date: Sunday, 28th November 2021.
Time: 2.00 pm BST.
Venue: Brentford Community Stadium, Brentford, London.
Referee: Darren England.
Assistants: Constantine Hatzidakis, Peter Kirkup.
Fourth official: John Brooks.
VAR: Jonathan Moss.
Assistant VAR: Marc Perry
Brentford manager Thomas Frank will be without first-choice goalkeeper David Raya again on Sunday, with the Spaniard shot-stopper missing the last 4 games with a knee injury. Long-term absentee Josh Dasilva is also ruled out, with his return still a long way away. Defenders Kristoffer Ajer and Julian Jeanvier have also been ruled out against Everton by Frank. Fellow defender Mathias Jorgensen is a huge doubt for the game and is unlikely to be selected in the matchday squad. The manager confirmed in his press conference that forward Yoanne Wissa will make the bench on Sunday, but it remains to see if he will get any minutes.
Everton will be missing their main striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin, with the Englishman still recovering from his quadriceps injury suffered back in August. There is a host of stars missing for Everton, with Tom Davies and Andre Gomes missing out with injuries, while Richarlison and Mason Holgate are unavailable due to suspension. Abdoualye Doucoure returned to full training and could be in line to feature against the Bees. However, Demarai Gray is a doubt after sustaining a groin injury against Man City last week.
CAN BRENTFORD TAKE ADVANTAGE OF EVERTON’S INJURY WOES?
Brentford and Everton face each other on Sunday, for the first-ever since 1954, and there is a hint of excitement as to how the game will pan out. It is no secret that both teams have been starved of league success this season and their forms have been pretty similar over the last few games. Both the teams are hungry for three points and to break this winless run. All this makes up for what is expected to be a very open and free-flowing game on Sunday.
Although the Bees have been astonishingly poor at home, with four losses and a draw in six games played there, they might stand a chance of improving that record this weekend. Everton are a severely weakened team as of now, with plenty of players missing from their squad. Both of their first-choice strikers in Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison are ruled out from the game, which has depleted their attacking department. With Tom Davies, Andre Gomes and Demarai Gray set to miss out, and Doucoure just returning to fitness, it seems very difficult for the Toffees to win the midfield battle against a Brentford team that likes to play with huge numbers in the middle of the park. The Bees dominating the midfield could give them the upper hand against Everton, and that may give them a greater opportunity of finally getting the long-awaited three points.
However, Everton still have enough quality in the squad to put up a fight, and with a seasoned tactician at the helm, it could be a very tricky game for Brentford. Although the odds are with the hosts, the Toffees are not a light opposition and will make it difficult for the Bees.
The Northampton-born striker had a brilliant season in the Championship last season, as his 32 goals and 10 assists propelled Brentford to the Premier League for the first time ever in their history. He raised many eyebrows with his performances, and he was linked with a few big clubs in the summer as a result of his clinical performances. He is still adjusting to life in the Premier League, having scored just 3 goals so far. However, he has been very crucial to Brentford’s style of play and their attacking play. Even though he has not scored many goals, he has been a thorn to the opposition defenders often dropping deep to hold up the ball and bring others into play. He will be hoping to build on yet another positive outing against Newcastle United last time out.
The Englishman was signed in the summer to boost their attacking options and give Everton some quality and experience in the final third. So far, the free signing has proved to be a good deal, with Townsend proving to be a crucial part of the team. His passing ability and long-range shooting is lethal weapon to have in the armory, and he has proved that on a few occasions. He has quickly become a very instrumental piece in the Everton attack and has been named in the starting lineup in every game bar one. With untimely injuries in the team, he has been forced to play in different positions every game, but has adapted quite well to each position. With both the main strikers out and Demarai Gray also unlikely to play, it seems Townsend will have to fill in for either of them, and it remains to see how the 30-year-old fares against what is a tough opposition.
Brentford predicted lineup: Alvaro Fernandez; Mads Rasmussen, Pontus Jansson, Ethan Pinnock; Sergi Canos, Vitaly Janelt, Christian Norgaard, Mathias Jensen, Rico Henry; Ivan Toney, Bryan Mbeumo.
Everton predicted lineup: Jordan Pickford; Seamus Coleman, Ben Godfrey, Michael Keane, Lucas Digne; Anthony Gordon, Allan, Fabian Delph, Alex Iwobi; Andros Townsend; Salomon Rondon.