James Garner schooled, Dwight McNeil thrives in new role: Everton player ratings v Wolves
Everton salvaged a late point in the eighth minute of injury time as they drew 1-1 against Wolves at the Molineux Stadium on Saturday (20 May)
After a promising opening 30 minutes, the Everton defence was torn to shreds by Adama Traore, who brushed off countless challenges before unleashing a shot that Jordan Pickford could only parry into the path of Hwang Hee-chan to poke home.
Injuries to Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Nathan Patterson were a bitter blow to Sean Dyche, but Mina poked home a dramatic late equaliser in the 98th minute after a scramble in the six-yard box.
Here Goodison News rates the players out of 10 for their performances against Wolves.
Jordan Pickford – 7
Pickford couldn’t have done much better with Traore’s shot, although it will come as a frustration that he palmed it straight into the feet of Hwang to tap home into an empty net. Made a few decent stops after this point as Wolves continued to create chances, but the outstretched leg to deny Nunes in injury-time was the one to remember.
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Yerry Mina – 6
Mina was as strong as ever in the challenge but his lack of pace in open play was evident against a sprightly Wolves front line. Was up to his usual tricks at one point, frustrating the home crowd by rolling around on the ground in anguish after being fouled by Ruben Neves. Popped up with what could be a season-defining goal in the 98th minute.
James Tarkowski – 5
Simply couldn’t handle Traore for the goal, as the attacker coasted past him before taking his shot. It was surprising there wasn’t more impetus and aggression from the Englishman after falling behind, considering what was at stake in this crunch clash. The centre-back did chip in with a crucial intervention to deny Diego Costa a plain sight of goal in the second half when he broke in behind the Everton defence.
Nathan Patterson – 6
It was a shame to see Patterson subbed off through injury after just 25 minutes because he had started the game brightly at right-back. The 21-year-old provided a strong attacking presence, often overlapping around the outside of Garner and putting a couple of cute crosses into the box. Dyche now faces a serious headache for the last day of the season with both Seamus Coleman and Patterson sidelined with injury.
James Garner – 4
After a standout performance against Brighton, this was Garner’s second successive outing where his impact was limited. Was given a schooling at points by Ruben Neves in the Wolves midfield, who managed to take the game by the scruff of the neck and overrun the Toffees midfield for large periods.
Amadou Onana- 6
This really wasn’t Onana’s best day at the office in possession of the ball, failing to have a single shot on goal and totalling an expected assists of just 0.02 [SofaScore]. However, the Belgian international remained strong in the tackle, winning 100% of his ground duels (5/5) and 100% of his aerial duels (2/2). Was subbed off for Neal Maupay in the closing stages as the Toffees chased an equaliser.
Idrissa Gueye – 5
Was found wanting for the opening goal as he failed to deal with the pace and power of Traore, letting him through the defence to take the shot which assisted the opening goal. As has become custom this season, Gueye was tasked with the mopping up duties whenever his teammates lost the ball higher up the pitch, but he was overrun by a barrage of Wolves attackers.
Abdoulaye Doucoure – 7
Despite not quite having the same impact as previous weeks, Doucoure was best of a largely poor bunch in the midfield, never giving up on a second ball and always looking strong in the challenge. His surges forward through the lines are so hard to stop and the way he carries the ball is unmatched within this Everton set-up.
Alex Iwobi – 6
Iwobi was full of running all game, but he did lack a certain creative spark when he got into promising positions in the final third. After Calvert-Lewin was taken off injured, the ex-Arsenal player was left to lead the press by himself, a task which he performed dutifully. Was solid, but not spectacular.
Dwight McNeil – 7 (Man of the match)
Struggled with his positioning in parts, never seemingly quite sure whether to burst forward and assist Calvert-Lewin in attack of drop deep and fulfil his wing-back duties. As Wolves grew into the game, he was occasionally caught out by the blistering pace of Traore. Despite this, McNeil remained a serious threat in attack, delivering cross after cross for his Everton teammates and unlocking the Wolves defence with 2 key passes. [SofaScore] As the game entered its latter stages, the attacker was one of few Everton players to throw caution to the wind and attempt to carve open chances in the final third.
Dominic Calvert-Lewin – 6
Fired wide an early chance with his left boot but was largely anonymous at the tip of Everton’s attack. Dyche’s decision to play McNeil as a wing-back left the Englishman isolated for large periods and he struggled to impact the game before he was subbed off just before half-time with an injury. Everton fans will be praying it is only a minor knock, but the body language said otherwise as he came off the pitch.
Michael Keane – (On for Patterson, 29′) – 6 – Came on in a make-shift right-back position. Looked a little out of place in the final third, but overall stuck to his task well.
Demarai Gray – (On for Calvert-Lewin, 45′) – 7 – Looked a danger when coming on to lead the line. Played a memorable ball across the six-yard box which nobody managed to get on the end of.
Neal Maupay – (On for Onana, 80′) – N/A
Mason Holgate – (On for Gueye, 80′) – N/A