By Danny Wright
Charlie Nicholas believes that Everton will be dumped out of the League Cup by Chelsea on Wednesday night in what will be their first game since Ronald Koeman was sacked on Monday.
The Sky Sports pundit has predicted a 2-0 win for Antonio Conte’s side at Stamford Bridge, and has added that he is backing Michy Batshuayi to score the first goal.
David Unsworth will take caretaker charge of the Toffees against the Premier League champions as they begin the search for a new manager.
Koeman was axed after a terrible start to the season, with poor home defeats to Lyon and Arsenal in the last few days proving to be the final straw with the club’s hierarchy.
Nicholas doesn’t think that the Merseysiders will be able to pull up any trees in their first game without the Dutchman at the helm and is backing Chelsea to reach the quarter-finals of the League Cup instead.
“Do Everton rest players or try to build something here? I think they are just going to Stamford Bridge looking to avoid embarrassment,” the ex-Arsenal striker said on the Sky Sports website.
“Chelsea aren’t playing well at all, though. While Antonio Conte clearly doesn’t fancy Michy Batshuayi, he needs him right now and I think the Belgian striker will inflict yet another defeat on the Toffees.”
Everton go into Wednesday’s game knowing that their recent record against Chelsea hasn’t been great.
They have lost all three of their last meetings without scoring a single goal and conceding 10 in the process.
The last time the Toffees won at Stamford Bridge was six years ago in a 2011 FA Cup fourth round replay victory on penalties when Leighton Baines scored a 119th minute equaliser in extra time before the shoot-out.
In other Everton news, this ex-La Liga coach is interested in the Toffees managers job – but it isn’t David Moyes.