By Harvey Byrne
Mark Lawrenson has voiced his doubts over Everton goalkeepers Maarten Stekelenburg and Joel Robles ahead of the clash against Sunderland on Monday.
The former Liverpool player, turned BBC pundit has predicted a 1-1 stalemate scoreline in the match at the Stadium of Light.
Everton beat Stoke 1-0 in their last outing and have started the new season unbeaten under Ronald Koeman, beating West Brom and earning a point against Tottenham.
Meanwhile, Sunderland have struggled in their start under former Toffees boss David Moyes, losing matches against Manchester City and Middlesbrough, picking up their only point of the season in a 1-1 draw against Southampton.
Lawrenson gave his verdict on the match, while also stating that he was left wondering why Koeman didn’t go in for Joe Hart, who left City to join Torino on loan.
“Everton have started very brightly and I think everyone likes the look of them under Ronald Koeman so far,” Lawrenson wrote in his BBC prediction feature.
“The only position in their team I have any doubts about is at goalkeeper, because Maarten Stekelenburg struggled at Fulham and I am not convinced by Joel Robles.
“Koeman knows Stekelenburg after taking him on loan at Southampton last season, so he must have faith in him, but I am left wondering why he did not go in for Manchester City’s Joe Hart.
“Sunderland made a few signings before the window closed, and they should be solid enough – but I am still not sure about where their creativity will come from in midfield.”
Stekelenburg rejoined Koeman at Everton after spells at Southampton and Ajax together.
The 33-year-old has cemented his place as the Toffees number one, starting in all four fixtures in all competitions in the new campaign, conceding two goals.
The Dutch goalkeeper has taken over the reigns of Robles, 26, who has not featured under Koeman.
The Spanish shot stopper was the first choice under former manager Roberto Martinez playing in 24 encounters for the club, conceding 31 goals.