Sean Dyche primed to make Everton decision that will continue to divide fans

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Everton face Brentford in the Premier League and there has been debate around Michael Keane’s place in the starting line-up.

Sean Dyche knows what comes with being part of a manager. He’s a battled-hardened 12-year veteran of the job.

From promotions to European football, relegation to sackings, Dyche is as well-rounded as most in the Premier League.

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And he’ll be all too wary of the scrutiny that occurs around his team selection week in, week out. The 51-year-old would have experienced it at Watford and Burnley - and certainly has during his five-and-a-half weeks in the Everton hot seat.

It’s the most rudimentary thing to debate as fans. Everyone, ultimately, wants three points but have several different hypotheses about how the outcome can be delivered.

After the 2-2 draw against Nottingham Forest, which leaves the Toffees in the relegation zone, there has been plenty of discussion surrounding who and who shouldn’t feature when Brentford visit Goodison Park on Saturday. One player in particular - Michael Keane - has split opinion.

A peripheral figure under former boss Frank Lampard, the centre-back has started the past two games at the expense of Conor Coady. Dyche has revived a partnership in Keane and James Tarkowski that served him both staunchly at effectively at Burnley.

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Social media can be a dangerous rabbit hole to get caught down. Very often, it’s not the voice of the majority and the most controversial of opinions can be the loudest. Yet in the case of Keane’s position in the Everton team ahead of Brentford, sentiment appears fairly balanced.

A significant portion feel that he should remain next to Tarkowski in central defence. Per SofaScore, Keane won eight aerial duels - the most of his team - made nine clearances and blocked one shot against Forest. In truth, it was an archetypal no-nonsense performance you might associate with a Dyche defender.

The 30-year-old’s threat in the opposition box shouldn’t go unnoticed either. It was Keane who rose to get the flick-on that assisted Abdoulaye Doucoure’s finish for the second goal. It’s unanimously concurred that set-pieces will be imperative for Everton to score goals given their troubles this campaign - especially if Dominic Calvert-Lewin remains absent.

But there is a decent section of fans who believe that the 12-cap England international should be omitted from the XI. They argue that Everton have conceded six goals in two matches with Keane in the rearguard. Some also feel he was culpable for Forest’s first goal due to his positioning that allowed Morgan Gibbs-White to shoot, which was parried by Jordan Pickford as far as Brennan Johnson.

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Dyche certainly isn’t short of options if he feels another change is required. After arriving on a season-long loan from Wolves, Coady was ever-present in the games he was available for before a 4-0 loss at Arsenal.

Ben Godfrey featured at left-back in the absence of Vitalii Mykolenko at Forest. Should the Ukraine international return from illness then Godfrey could be shifted inside.

Mason Holgate made an outing in midfield off the bench at Arsenal but he’s a recognised defender. In fact, of the centre-halves at Goodison only Yerry Mina has yet to be handed a single minute of action under Dyche. Some feel that he is Everton’s best despite his well-documented injury issues.

We’ll only find out who gets the nod alongside Tarkowski come an hour before kick-off against Brentford. Yet before then, the topic will continue to be wrangled over.

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