February 28, 2024

Everton were in shock after the Premier League handed down their 10-point penalty for breaching financial rules, and in many seasons would now be staring at relegation from the top flight for the first time since 1951 when they slipped into the old Second Division.

The immediate sanction drops them into the relegation zone, with only Burnley’s inferior goal difference separating them from the foot of the table.

With 26 games remaining, however, all hope is not lost at Goodison Park. If there was one season to be hit with a points penalty, it would be the current campaign. Here are the key factors why Everton may avoid relegation to the Championship . . .

     

The Dyche effect

Everton have the right manager in place for a battle against relegation, with Sean Dyche working miracles at Burnley on a budget to get them in the Premier League and suffer relegation once during his six full campaigns in the top flight. He put together teams who were disciplined and well-drilled in defence but still had the ability to score goals to keep their heads above water.

Dyche will not be fazed by the challenge of climbing out of the relegation zone. He has suffered poor starts at Burnley before, notably when his squad had to juggle European football with the Premier League. His teams are balanced and he has power in his midfield − Abdoulaye Doucouré and Amadou Onana give them a chance to take control of matches.

After taking one point from their first five Premier League games of the season, Everton have accrued 13 from their last seven. Maintaining even half that form should be enough to keep them up.

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