The Merseyside team, which has been playing in the top of the English football pyramid since 1954, is second-to-last with five games to the end of the season. Everton has been close to the demotion, but now it seems difficult to evade it.
Everton: a historic club in trouble
Many years have passed since Everton’s last golden era. The Liverpool-based team has not won the league since 1987, when they won two league titles and a second-place finish. During those years, they also won an FA Cup and the European Cup, in addition to four consecutive Charity Shields. However, since then, nothing has been the same for Liverpool’s ugly duckling.
In the late 1990s and early 2000s, Everton flirted with relegation to the Championship, including a tie in points with the relegated team. Nevertheless, and in part thanks to the arrival of Wayne Rooney, the team managed to turn the situation around, playing in the Champions League again and becoming a mid-table team capable of fighting for European competitions.
But Everton’s resurgence came to an end with the pandemic. They finished 12th in the 2019/2020 season, but in the 2021/2022 season, relegation was very close. Only a late winning streak, with victories against Chelsea and Manchester United, prevented a debacle: four points separated the ‘Toffees’ from leaving the Premier League.
This season has once again become complicated, and signs of repeating last year’s feat are not there. Sean Dyche’s team is 19th, two points away from safety, but they haven’t won a game in a month and a half.
A tough schedule ahead
And yes, the situation could be even worse: because Everton’s fixture list is not exactly a piece of cake. Next Monday is a decisive match: Leicester City – Everton, third-last against second-last. A victory for Everton would not guarantee their salvation, but it would give them a little breathing room. However, a defeat could leave them with one foot in the Championship.
Next, Everton will travel to face a surprising Brighton, still in the fight to qualify for the Europa League, and will host Manchester City, still in contention for the league title against Arsenal. The penultimate round will be against Wolves, who will probably have secured their position in the league by then, and they will face Bournemouth in the final round, which could decide the future of both teams in the Premier League.
Relegation would be a disaster for Everton: they are the team with the most seasons in the First Division/Premier League, and the second with the most consecutive years in the league. A historic club is in trouble, and it seems unlikely that they will be able to escape it this time.