Southampton piled the pressure on managerless Everton on Sunday as they cruised to a 4-1 victory at St.Mary’s. Charlie Austin was the pick of the players for the Saints as he scored a second-half brace which diminished the Toffees’ chances of reversing their fortunes. The Merseyside outfit are currently positioned 18th in the standings, just two points ahead of the dreaded drop.
Three Things We Learned:
Charlie Austin needs to start more often: The former Queens Park Rangers man surprisingly made his first league start of the campaign against Everton. Since recovering from his injury during the off-season, Mauricio Pellegrino has largely used the Englishman from the bench with his only other goal being the winning penalty in the 3-2 triumph over West Ham in August. The Toffees have not quite found the right balance at the back this term, and Austin took full advantage as he notched a brace using his head. With Manolo Gabbiadini and Shane Long struggling upfront, Austin could just be the solution to the Saints sub-par form in the forward department.
Everton still lack a match-defining striker: Arsenal’s Olivier Giroud has been underlined as the prime target for Everton in the summer, but their lack of a contingency plan has hampered their progress big time. Wayne Rooney has sparkled in stages for Everton during the ongoing season, but the veteran does not quite possess the qualities of an Olivier Giroud or Romelu Lukaku, who can link up with their teammates with their excellent hold-up play. Oumar Niasse has provided some much-needed boost up front, but he is still a grade below the quality of marksmen, the Toffees have had over the years.
Everton need to recruit a new manager and quickly: Farhad Moshiri has recently revealed that the Toffees are close to recruiting a new head coach, and boy, the club need a quick solution. Caretaker David Unsworth has not had any luck coaching the first-team squad, but the arrival of a new manager could instill a fresh vein of confidence among the players. As of now, Sam Allardyce is deemed as the front-runner for the vacant job (BBC Sport), although he was alleged to be mulling retirement after resigning at Crystal Palace in the summer.
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