Some Everton supporters were dejected after learning that Dominic Calvert-Lewin would not feature against Manchester City tomorrow night
Carlo Ancelotti confirmed in his pre-match press conference that the Toffees’ top scorer wouldn’t take to the field at Goodison for their Premier League clash with City.
The 23-year-old picked up a hamstring injury in Everton’s engaging 5-4 FA Cup victory over Tottenham Hotspur last week and missed the subsequent 2-0 defeat to Fulham.
He did offer better news that Calvert-Lewin should hopefully return for Saturday’s massive Merseyside derby fixture versus Liverpool.
His absence will be sorely felt when City come to town, a sense of impending doom echoed by the Evertonian followers.
Stopping City’s conquest
Pep Guardiola’s side are enjoying a mesmerising 16-match unbeaten streak in all competitions that stretches back to December 15.
Since that mini blip against West Bromwich Albion, City have crushed all that lay before them as they cruised back to the league’s summit.
It is now the task of Everton to try slow down this juggernaut and make the title race slightly competitive.
Without Calvert-Lewin, this mission seems even more improbable.
He currently stands on 18 goals for the season, 10 more than his nearest competitor in Richarlison.
This impressive tally took slightly longer to reach after a small dry spell between December and January.
Calvert-Lewin went seven league games without scoring, having previously netted 11 from 11.
Strikes away to Leeds United and Manchester, plus one against Spurs, had got him back on track until injury struck.
King for a royal occasion
Joshua King may be offered his full debut by Ancelotti on Thursday as a response to Calvert-Lewin’s omission.
Everton signed the forward from Bournemouth on loan for just this kind of situation.
But Ancelotti opted to deploy Gylfi Sigurdsson as a false nine to very little effect in the Fulham defeat.
Admittedly, it’s a tactic that has served Guardiola so well this campaign. This is difficult to replicate without the caliber of player City possess in their squad.
An unlikely scalp over the Citizens would push Everton level on points with Liverpool if that wasn’t enough of an incentive.
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