Everton twice squandered the lead today, as they were forced to settle for a draw on the road to relegation rivals Nottingham Forest.
It was a fine opportunity to make huge strides up the Premier League table, and when Demarai Gray dispatched an early penalty to see the Toffees’ pressure bear fruit, it seemed like they might be set to earn just their second away win of the season.
Should Amadou Onana be dropped when Garner is fit?
However, they could not account for the stellar performance of Brennan Johnson, who proved to be a constant threat throughout which culminated in his two goals.
His second, to cancel out Abdoulaye Doucoure’s deft header, was the pick of the bunch, as he drove into space and then fired a return pass into the top left corner with his weaker foot.
Whilst the hosts seemed the more likely to push on for that winner, in the end, the points were shared.
However, it noted yet another anonymous display for a few of Sean Dyche’s men, most notably Amadou Onana.
How did Amadou Onana play vs Forest?
The Belgian started yet again alongside Doucoure and Idrissa Gueye, and whilst the scrutiny was initially focused around the Senegalese stalwart given his recent displays, it quickly shifted after the full-time whistle had gone today.
He arguably only retained his place throughout the game due to a lack of alternative options, with his performances having waned since the World Cup. During the competition, he also drew scorn from journalist James Smart, who branded him “clumsy” for the Red Devils.
This was another display to support such a claim, as the £100k-per-week earner offered little throughout in the way of going forward.
The 21-year-old could only muster 31 touches all game and converted that into just 12 completed passes. For comparison, even goalkeeper Jordan Pickford managed more touches (34).
Defensively he was at least present, but he hardly had the desired influence given his distinct lack of offensive contribution. He mustered three interceptions and two tackles, but of his 11 competed duels he could only win five, via Sofascore.
Dyche will have expected more from his young hulking maestro and will demand more as they enter the business end of this league season.
Today marked a wholly winnable game, and arguably a huge chance missed to move out of the relegation zone.
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