Everton will make a trip to Croatia for their second leg of the Europa qualifying game where they play Hajduk Split. The Toffees are just one step away from getting into the group stages of the second-tier European tournament and with a two-goal lead from the first leg, Ronald Koeman will be quietly confident of progressing.
The Toffees put up a determined display against Manchester City on Monday night as a late strike from Raheem Sterling helped salvage the Sky Blues a point after Wayne Rooney had put Everton in front. This game could be a trickier one for Koeman’s men with a totally different atmosphere, but given the team he has on paper, Everton should see a comfortable win.
Predicted 4-2-3-1 Everton Line-up vs Hajduk Split
Jordan Pickford will be handed the gloves once again. The English goalie produced a marvellous display against City with many commending his ball distribution and reflexes. Although Koeman wouldn’t expect to see him tested so many times this game, he would want his safest hands in that role.
Koeman opted for a three-man defence against City to provided more security at the back. We saw all three, Michael Keane, Phil Jagielka and Ashley Williams starting. However, the gaffer could opt for a four-man back line in this time with an eye on the weekend game against Chelsea.
Following his impressive display against City, we expect Jagielka to be rested in the midweek game. Keane and Williams should start in the middle flanked by Leighton Baines and Mason Holgate.
Following Morgan Schneiderlin’s red card in the closing stages of the game, the gaffer will be missing him in the crucial game against Chelsea next weekend and is expected to use him in the midweek clash alongside Muhamed Besic. Idrissa Gueye has been playing continuously over the past two weeks and should be given enough rest before their clash with Chelsea.
Besic had come off the bench to replace Wayne Rooney after Schneiderlin was sent off and should be fresh to start the game against Hajduk Split.
The wings are expected to be taken by new arrival Gylfi Sigurdsson and Kevin Mirallas. Baines and Holgate had done a fantastic job as wing backs against City but would be expecting a less tiring role on Thursday. The playmaker’s role should be taken by Davy Klaassen.
The centre forward role is expected to be taken by Sandro Ramirez. The Spaniard striker didn’t feature on Monday game with a knock but is expected to start this time. Koeman would want Rooney fit and fresh for Sunday.