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Match Previews

Match preview: Morecambe v Everton U21s

30 August 2022

The Shrimps come up against Everton U21s in their first Papa John’s Trophy Northern Group A fixture of the campaign.

The two teams met at the same stage of the competition last season, with then manager David Unsworth guiding the young Toffees to a 1-0 win.

Sean McAllister’s 64th minute strike proved the difference between both sides on the night, in what was the first ever meeting between the clubs.

The opposition

Paul Tait’s men have enjoyed a strong start to the season and are unbeaten in all four matches since the campaign began.

An opening day victory over Blackburn Rovers was followed by victory over Tottenham Hotspur, before a 2-2 draw with Manchester United. On their last outing, the young Toffees triumphed over West Ham United by two goals to one.

Tait’s side currently sit third in the Premier league 2 table, behind leaders Arsenal and Crystal Palace.

Key players

Striker Thomas Cannon has enjoyed a blistering start to the season, scoring four goals in three appearances and providing one assist. After an impressive 2021/22 campaign, which saw the Republic of Ireland Youth international finish top scorer with eight PL2 goals, the 19-year-old was rewarded this month with a new three-year deal, extended his Goodison Park stay from nine years to 12.

Stanley Mills finished last season as the second highest provider with four assists, behind Rhys Hughes (5) who joined Tranmere Rovers in the summer. As well as appearing in all but one of Everton’s 26 PL2 matches last season, he was named on the bench of the club’s 2022/23 PL opener against Chelsea. In addition to signing a new three-year contract this month, he was also called up to Everton’s first-team squad for their pre-season tour of the USA in July, and featured against Arsenal and Minnesota United, before playing in friendlies in England against Blackpool and Dynamo Kiev respectively.

Attacking midfielder Sean McAllister scored the all-important goal for the Toffees at the Mazuma Stadium last campaign. The  19-year-old has played in every game so far this campaign, scoring a 47th minute winner against Blackburn Rovers on the opening day. The versatile Northern Ireland Youth international has played in a number of positions so far throughout his career, including right-back, right-midfield, defensive midfield, central midfield, attacking midfield, left midfield and left wing.

Derek Adams’ thoughts

Ahead of the match, Derek Adams has reiterated the point that his Shrimps will not take the travelling Toffees lightly.

“These games are never easy because they have some quality players, a number of these players will probably go out on loan after the game,” he said.

“Some of them have already been in-and-around the first-team this season, so it will be a good game, there will be changes, we will give six players their first starts of the season. 

“That enables us to rest some of our players for the night and it gives an opportunity for some of the other players to impress.” 

Meet the officials

Washington-based Rebecca Welch will take charge of the fixture, and will be assisted by Ivan Stankovic and Billy Smallwood, with Richard Holmes completing the line up as Fourth Official.

The 38-year-old made history in April 2021 when she became the first female referee to officiate an EFL fixture. Furthermore, Welch also became the first woman to referee a men’s FA Cup Third Round tie, as Birmingham hosted Plymouth Argyle in January this year.

Welch has taken charge of two games this season, and has distributed a total of five yellow cards and no red cards. She has taken charge of the Shrimps once before, in last season’s 4-0 home defeat against MK Dons.

iFollow

After teaming up with Beyond Radio for the 2022/23 season, supporters will be able to listen to exclusive, full and uninterrupted radio commentary of every single game, home and away, which will be broadcast simultaneously on 103.5FM, 107.5FM and DAB+ digital radio across North Lancashire and South Cumbria as well as on the iFollow Shrimps platform.

Lead commentator Jonny Crowther will be joined by the Club's Media and Content Coordinator, Matt Smith. 

Audio passes are available from as little as £2.50 per match, £4.49 for a monthly pass or £45 for a season pass.

For this fixture, video passes are also available and can be purchased here

As well as full match commentary, the ‘Shrimps Verdict’ podcast will be available post-match, featuring online, on demand content, including audio match highlights, post-match interviews and reaction, and much more!


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