Sunday, José Mourinho and Manchester United host Everton at Old Trafford. And coming into the match, Everton are actually ahead of the Red Devils in the table. After nine matches, the Toffees are sitting on 15 points — good for eighth in the table. Meanwhile, United are currently on 14 points and 10th in the table. But even more worrying? They have a -1 goal differential through those nine matches. Still, Everton winger Theo Walcott understands that United must be taken seriously. Always.
“I don’t think it’s the best time playing Man United at any time, I really don’t,” Walcott told reporters (via ESPN’s Jamie Braidwood). “But we are in good spirits, we are in good form, we’re enjoying ourselves.”
Still, this is United we’re talking about. They have talent lining their roster. From world-class superstars Alexis Sánchez and Paul Pogba to emerging talents like Marcus Rashford, there’s no reason this team should be where they are. But they are. That’s where we’re at right now. And Walcott knows Everton have to be ready.
“It’s obviously well documented [United’s struggles] but the players they have, it’s not going to be an easy game. … But we know our strengths, we know what to do to obviously keep the fans quiet, that’s the most important thing. … We need to focus on ourselves really, not them.”
Isn’t that how it always goes? Of course Everton need to focus on themselves. Plus, United are just a mess right now. Nothing is going right. The Mourinho saga isn’t ending anytime soon either. Sunday, Everton just need to take care of themselves. Maybe United will continue to crumble, but they cannot bank on that. And Walcott knows it.
In nine PL matches for the Toffees this season, Walcott has two goals and two assists. Will he be able to find some magic on Sunday?