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Preview: Everton vs. Sheffield United - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Sunday's Premier League clash between Everton and Sheffield United, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Everton will be looking to give their European hopes a boost when they continue their Premier League campaign at home to basement side Sheffield United on Sunday evening.

The Toffees are currently eighth in the table, four points behind fifth-placed Liverpool, while Sheffield United remain rooted to the bottom of the division, having picked up just 17 points during a disastrous campaign.


Match preview

Aston Villa's John McGinn in action with Everton's Dominic Calvert-Lewin in the Premier League on May 13, 2021© Reuters

Everton's top-four bid all but ended on Thursday evening as they were held to a goalless draw by Aston Villa, with the result leaving them down in eighth position in the table, now eight points off fourth-placed Chelsea.

The Toffees are still very much in the race for the Europa League spots, though, as they sit just four points behind fifth-placed Liverpool, while the Merseyside outfit are just two points behind sixth-placed West Ham United.

Carlo Ancelotti's side have struggled for consistency throughout the campaign, winning 16 but losing 11 of their 35 matches, and they are actually now only one point clear of ninth-placed Arsenal in the table.

Everton will certainly be eyeing wins in their last two matches against Sheffield United and Wolverhampton Wanderers before finishing their 2020-21 campaign with a difficult trip to the champions Manchester City.

The Toffees have actually been excellent on their travels this term, boasting the fourth-best away record in the Premier League, but their home form has been an issue, having picked up just 19 points from 17 matches at Goodison Park.

Sheffield United interim manager Paul Heckingbottom on May 8, 2021© Reuters

Sheffield United, meanwhile, will already be thinking about next season, with the Blades dropping back down into the Championship, having failed to compete at this level in 2020-21.

The strugglers have only picked up 17 points from their 35 matches to sit rock bottom of the table, and they will enter this match off the back of a disappointing 2-0 home defeat to Crystal Palace last weekend.

Paul Heckingbottom's side have the worst away record in the Premier League this season, but their sole victory on their travels did come at Old Trafford, with second-placed Manchester United on the wrong end of a 2-1 scoreline.

Sheffield United will be desperate to give their supporters something to be positive about in their final three matches against Everton, Newcastle United and Burnley.

The Blades have only won one of their last eight matches against Everton in all competitions, though, and suffered a 1-0 loss when the two teams locked horns in the reverse fixture back in December.

Everton Premier League form:
  • D
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • D

Sheffield United Premier League form:
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • L



Team News

Everton's James Rodriguez takes the knee on February 20, 2021© Reuters

Everton will again be without the services of Jean-Philippe Gbamin this weekend through injury, but Yerry Mina could potentially be available for selection following an adductor issue.

Ancelotti is also hopeful that James Rodriguez will be available to start, with the Colombia international potentially coming into a wide right position for the Toffees.

There are not expected to be many changes from the side that started against Villa, though, with Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewin set to continue in the final third of the field.

As for Sheffield United, Jack O'Connell, Billy Sharp, Oli McBurnie and Jack Robinson remain on the sidelines, while Ethan Ampadu is unlikely to play again this season due to a pelvic problem.

Heckingbottom also revealed during Friday's pre-match press conference that Oliver Burke has fractured his foot, while Sander Berge is unlikely to be risked from the start this weekend.

As a result, there could be a start in the final third of the field for Rhian Brewster, while Ben Osborn is likely to replace Berge in the middle of the park for the league's basement club.

Everton possible starting lineup:
Pickford; Holgate, Keane, Godfrey, Digne; Rodriguez, Doucoure, Allan, Sigurdsson; Richarlison, Calvert-Lewin

Sheffield United possible starting lineup:
Ramsdale; Basham, Egan, Bryan; Baldock, Fleck, Norwood, Osborn, Stevens; McGoldrick, Brewster


SM words green background

We say: Everton 1-0 Sheffield United

Everton have been far from convincing at Goodison Park this season, and Sheffield United are capable of making this an uncomfortable match for the Toffees. That said, we are expecting the hosts to boost their European challenge with a narrow victory.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 1.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 1.5:data


Video prediction

Watch the Sports Mole Football Shorts prediction for this game below:


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How you voted: Everton vs Sheff Utd

Everton
91.2%
Draw
3.3%
Sheffield United
5.5%
91
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Ben Godfrey in action for Everton with Liverpool's Sadio Mane on October 17, 2020
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