At the beginning of the season, I had written down my Premier League predictions. Now with 19 games played, let’s look at Everton and see how they’ve done. Back in the preseason, I said this of the Toffeemen:
Roberto Martinez finishing sixth in his first season for Everton would be massive for both him and the club … So far he has managed to hold on to the bigger names expected to go and invested in some quality. If he can avoid signing Joey Barton, then he may just have the desired team harmony he needs to bring the Toffee back to where they need to be.
Romalu Lukaku and Gareth Barry have been great for Martinez, and the move to hang on to Leighton Baines was fantastic. They were undefeated until they played Manchester City, and certainly have the Everton fans buzzing. The new year sees them face Liverpool away in the final game of January in what could be a decider as to where they finish. Currently fourth and above Liverpool, they will face the struggling Norwich, Stoke and West Brom.
I will stick with my original prediction of sixth, which I thought was optimistic initially. Now, I think it would be disappointing if they were to finish lower than that. The key will not only be who he brings in, but who he loses (if any) in the window.
Jason Bardwell is a Soccer writer for Rant Sport. You can follow him on Twitter @PACityboy or on www.facebook.com/jasonbardwell1979.