Ever-present Everton pair at risk as Sean Dyche set to weigh up changes for Leeds United clash

Everton early team news and the selction problems posed to Sean Dyche ahead of the Leeds United clash.

Sean Dyche suffered his first defeat as Everton manager in the Merseyside derby on Monday night.

After a superb 1-0 win against Arsenal, the Toffees came back down to reality with a 2-0 loss to Liverpool at Anfield.

It means that Everton remain in the Premier League relegation zone but have a chance to move clear when they face Leeds United at Goodison Park this Saturday.

Dyche will be weighing up his starting line-up throughout the week and here’s an early look at some of the questions posed to the Blues boss.

Goalkeeper and Defence

Jordan Pickford didn't cover himself in glory for Mo Salah's opening goal. The No.1 was caught in no man's land and it was a misread that Sean Dyche spotted. Still, Pickford has made few errors this season and will remain between the posts.

Yet there could be a change in the rearguard. After shacking Bukayo Saka against Arsenal, Vitalii Mykolenko was given a difficult evening facing Salah. The Ukraine international has been an ever-presenter starter in the Premier League but there are some calls among supporters for the versatile Ben Godfrey to slot into the left-back role. Ruben Vinagre is another option.

Conor Coady fronted up to why he opted to leave Trent Alexander-Arnold's cross, which Cody Gakpo prodded home at the back post unmarked.

Coady's started every league game possible since he arrived on a season-long loan from Wolves - the only games he’s missed was because he was ineligible to face his parent club. After an excellent start to his Goodison career, Coady's form has dipped in recent weeks and there's competition for his spot. Godfrey, Yerry Mina, Mason Holgate and Michael Keane were all on the bench against Liverpool and are options to start next to James Tarkowski should Dyche make a bold decision when it comes to Coady.

Seamus Coleman didn't cover himself in glory by opting not to commit professional fouls in the build-up for both goals on the counter-attack. Nathan Patterson may not be available again as he continues to work back from a knee injury, although Godfrey and Holgate can feature on the right-hand side.


Having dominated the middle of the park in the defeat of Arsenal, it was the stark opposite at Anfield. Amadou Onana, Idrissa Gana Gueye and Abdoulaye Doucoure succumbed meekly.

Still, most would concur that if Dyche is sticking with a 4-5-1 formation then that is his best trio.

Tom Davies spurned a gilt-edged header after coming on as a substitute while James Garner may not be ready to start should he be available again following a lengthy back problem.

There is the option to move Alex Iwobi back into the engine room, which has been his best position at Everton and restore Demarai Gray to the flank.


The options that Dyche has available are scant with Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s availability looking unlikely at this stage.

The gamble to start rookie striker Ellis Simms against Liverpool didn't work out. His inexperience was exposed.

In truth, it's likely that Neal Maupay may be given an opportunity despite not quite being suited to playing up front on his own. While he's netted just one goal since arriving from Brighton, Maupay does have experience on his side over Simms.

Gray could feature as a false number nine, too.