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Southampton 2 v 0 Everton
Barclays Premier League
Sunday, 25th October 2020 Kick-off 14:00
Everton Mind Games Mean Rodriguez May Play Against Saints
Saturday, 24th Oct 2020 09:20

Earlier in the week Saints supporters were relived to hear that James Rodriguez would be missing after picking up an injury against Liverool, but now it seems that Ralph Hasenhuttl is not the only one that likes to keep opponents guessing and that Carlo Ancelotti likes to play them too.

As I mentioned earlier in the week, Calvert-Lewin has been getting all the headlines as Everton get off to their best start in the league since the Beatles were still together, but it has been James Rodriguez calling all the shots, so the news that he had not been training all week was very welcome.

But in his press conference yesterday Carlo Ancelotti told the assembled hacks that the Columbian had "partially" trained on Friday and could be in contention for the trip to St Mary's.

That is bad news for Saints, but the hope is that if he plays he will not be 100% fit and sometimes playing even your best player when he is not fit can backfire.

The Everton manager also confirmed that he would not be dropping Jordan Pickford for the game, although that could be good news for Saints supporters as the keeper is clearly not in great form and his decesion making is shot to pieces.

Photo: Action Images



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highfield49 added 10:01 - Oct 24
Huge fingers crossed that Pickford doesn't clatter Danny Ings tomorrow, that would clearly impact on our entire season.
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WestSussexSaint added 21:12 - Oct 24
I suspect If James is less than 100% he will be on the bench and only called upon if Everton are trailing in the match.

I hope Pickford’s experience this week has knocked his confidence a bit. He may think twice about rushing out to close a striker down and Danny or Che won’t need a second invitation to nip in.
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underweststand added 11:08 - Oct 25
If everyone is playing " mind games " over this , or will we see our players putting Pickford under pressure in the area.? Many of us haven't forgotten when he almost took the shirt off Danny Ings back last year, yet another incident that went unpunished.

As much as I applauded the introduction of VAR , some of the usage / ignorance of the service is beyond belief. Was the ref. afraid to make his own VAR judgement on ENGLAND's goalie last week ...or as in yesterday's Man U v Chelsea game blatantly ignore ENGLAND's CB Harry Maguire's blatant stranglehold on the Chelsea striker?
Certainly few people could continue to claim that either incident wasn't foul play...
One original suggestion on VAR that was not taken up - was the manager's right to call for " dubious" incidents be taken up in review.... (as cricketers have the right to do)

If " top of the table " Everton are involved in any sort of " incident " at SMS, I wonder if we will see the ref. consult the pitchside monitor...or is that expecting too much?
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