With 2019 having arrived, the Premier League seems to have bit of a hangover with Everton welcoming Leicester City to Goodison Park in the first of only three New Year Day fixtures.
Ademola Lookman looks to be Everton’s only absentee as he continues to recover from an ankle issue.
Lookman has missed the Toffees’ last two outings as a result of the injury but could return at weekend for their FA Cup clash with Lincoln City.
Leicester have a full squad to choose from with Wes Morgan and Jonny Evans set to return from illness.
Daniel Amartey is their only sidelined player as he continues his rehabilitation from a broken leg suffered in October against West Ham.
Everton enter this game off the back of poor form with just five points from last seven league matches.
The Toffees however have scored in each of their ten home games so far this season, including twice in each of last two at Goodison Park.
Leicester saw a two match winning run ended at weekend by Cardiff but have collected ten points from their last seven league games.
On their travels, the Foxes have scored in nine of their ten trips so far and drew 1-1 in two of their last four away games.
- Everton have won four of their last five league meetings with Leicester (W4, L1).
- Since Leicester returned to Premier League in 2014-15 season, this fixture has seen clean sheets in just two of nine meetings with both teams collecting one apiece via 2-0 wins at King Power Stadium.
- Since a goalless draw at Goodison Park in January 1999, the last nine clashes here have seen both teams score.
- Leicester have already collected four red cards this season, which is just one less than the five sending offs which they earned last season.
- Everton have a pass accuracy of 78% from their opening 20 games compared to 74% from whole of last season.
- Everton’s Richarlison (9) and Gylfi Sigurdsson (8) have managed 17 goals to Leicester’s top two combined league scorers of Jamie Vardy (6) and James Maddison (5) who have 11 goals between them.
- Jordan Pickford and Kasper Schmeichel are the only two from these teams who have played all 1800 minutes of Premier League action so far this season without being subbed.
Both sides will be disappointed with their defeats at weekend but Everton’s inconsistent performances are still a concern.
Leicester however have shown strong attacking intent in recent games and were just unlucky at weekend to come up against such inspired goalkeeping from Neil Etheridge.
I therefore can see an away win here if Everton’s defence don’t turn up, especially nine days on from that embarrassing display against Tottenham in their last home game.
Prediction: Everton 1-2 Leicester City
Jake predicts: Everton 0-0 Leicester City
Result: Everton 0-1 Leicester City