Everton’s pre-season victory raises four key transfer questions for Rafa Benitez.


Everton’s pre-season victory raises four key transfer questions for Rafa Benitez.

Everton beat Accrington Stanley 3-0 at Finch Farm on Saturday afternoon to earn their first pre-season win.

The match will not be officially recorded as Rafa Benitez’s first as manager of the club, as it was described as a training session rather than a friendly.

However, the Spaniard will have been curious to see how his new players have adjusted to his methods during their first week back at the training facility.

The players that scored were Tom Cannon, Lewis Gibson, and Anthony Gordon, but a number of other players had opportunities to receive potentially vital minutes at Finch Farm.

And, as the transfer window rumbles on, the encounter might have posed some intriguing transfer questions for Benitez and the rest of the Everton administration.

There was an opportunity for young goalkeepers to step up while Jordan Pickford was abroad on international duty and preparing to represent England in the Euro 2020 final.

During the 2020/21 season, Joao Virginia established himself as Everton’s regular third-choice goalkeeper, making his Premier League debut against Burnley in March after Pickford suffered an injury.

With Robin Olsen returning to Roma following his loan spell with the club, there appears to be room in the squad for a No.2 at Goodison Park.

Virginia may be eyeing that role, given his increased responsibilities from last season, while Harry Tyrer had another chance to impress on Saturday.

After impressing with the under-23s in recent months, the 19-year-old was also a part of Everton’s pre-season last season, playing against Preston.

Benitez may have to choose between signing a new goalkeeper to offer back-up for Pickford or trusting the young shot-stoppers he has at his disposal right now.

Everton were in desperate need of midfield reinforcements last summer, and they were able to do so thanks to some quality signings.

The additions of Allan and Abdoulaye Doucoure to the Blues’ midfield offered them more alternatives, but their long-term injuries emphasized how much they were relying on each other.

More quality arrivals were expected, especially near the end of last season, according to supporters. The summary comes to an end.


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