Everton host Sunderland this Sunday looking to get back on track after collecting just one point from of the last possible nine.
The Blues have performed well at times but have not been picking up as many as they maybe should have. Missed chances in the narrow 2-1 defeat to Arsenal last week is an example of why they now lie in the bottom half.
Roberto Martinez’s Toffees need to improve their home record with only one win in the league there all season. The sight of Sunderland will also bring back bad memories as the Black Cats have won on their last two visits to Goodison Park, including the 2-0 victory in May which helped the Wearsiders secure survival.
The visitors will still be smiling after last week’s 3-0 win over fierce rivals Newcastle but they still remain two points from safety.
Sam Allardyce got his wish for more goals and will have noted Everton’s tendency to concede early on. The hosts have conceded the first goal in nine of their 13 matches this campaign.
The Black Cats boss will also be aware that Sunderland have not travelled well so far this season with no goals scored away from home since August.
With that in mind, he may be tempted to start Jermain Defoe, who scored in the corresponding 2-0 win at Goodison Park last season and impressed after coming on as a substitute against the Magpies.
Leighton Baines and Muhamed Besic have returned to training for Everton but captain Phil Jagielka has now been ruled out for two months, meaning Ramiro Funes Mori will fill in.
Seamus Coleman is also a doubt for Martinez with a stomach bug so Tyias Browning is on standby.
Allardyce is expected to field a similar team to last time out but Younes Kaboul, Ola Toivonen and John O’Shea all face late fitness tests.
Fabio Borini probably won’t return in time from an ankle problem.
League Position: Everton – 12th (13 pts); Sunderland – 19th (6 pts)
Last Meeting: Everton 0-2 Sunderland, May 2015
Key Men: Everton – Romelu Lukaku; Sunderland – Jeremain Lens
Form: Everton – WDWDLL; Sunderland – LLLDLW
Shoot Says: Everton 2-1 Sunderland