Former £7m Everton striker nets two hat-tricks in eight days as striker struggles continue

Everton: The former Everton striker has hit the ground running since leaving the club.

Everton's attacking issues continue to plague their season and it doesn't help to hear that their former forward has netted two hat-tricks in eight days.

Sean Dyche has continually banged the drum this season about his side's attacking frustrations but the hard truth is that they have scored the third-least goals across the league - with only Burnley and Sheffield United netting less.

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Their failures in front of goal have been the story of the season, sadly. A consistent pattern has emerged across their games, especially at Goodison Park; they dominate on expected goals but a lack of a clinical finisher has held them back. In fact, Everton have had a higher expected goals figure (xG) than their opponents 17 times in the league this season but have lost six and drawn five of those games which clearly shows their issues.

Once again, the weekend's action saw them struggle to make their dominance pay against West Ham, who cruelly stole three points in added time - and Dyche expressed his dismay at the result. "You can't say every week about xGs because it's through the roof again. You have to go and score a goal," Dyche told Sky Sports. "Too many games have got away from us at Goodison. We can't keep creating chances and not killing a game off."

One player who hasn't struggled in front of goal this season is Ellis Simms, the former Everton academy graduate who joined Coventry this summer in a £7m deal. The Sky Blues sit three points off the play-off places after a 5-0 romp over Rotherham and Simms has now netted 12 goals in all competitions, including two hat-tricks in eight days.

He played just 12 times for the Toffees, netting just one goal. That came against Chelsea in the league in what was a brilliant solo effort to beat Kalidou Koulibaly before slotting past Kepa Arrizabalaga. It was a small snippet of Simms' ability but the club was essentially forced to sell him to raise funds in the summer. With Youssef Chermiti, 19, and Beto signed in the summer, the club has to give them time and back them to succeed. Neal Maupay will also return in the summer after his loan at Brentford to add another forward into the mix but, right now, it seems there is no one answer for their striker issues.

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