Everton left Goodison Park in rapture last weekend after defeating Brentford to secure a coveted victory to propel the battling outfit away from immediate danger in the fight to preserve top-flight status, and now face the onerous task of travelling to Stamford Bridge to face Chelsea.

Dwight McNeil’s wonderful strike in the opening moments of the match was the solitary goal last time out, stifling Thomas Frank's men – who are pushing for a spot in next year’s European limelight – and ascending to 15th in the division.

The danger creeps up on Sean Dyche and co like a shadow at twilight, however, with Graham Potter's Blues winning their past three matches and clinching qualification to the Champions League quarter-finals after a woeful run of form, starting to gel together with conviction.

Talisman Dominic Calvert-Lewin has been engulfed in an injury nightmare this term, and might be unavailable for the trip to Stamford Bridge, while Andros Townsend remains a long-term absentee.

How will Dyche field his starting 11 vs Chelsea?

With this in mind, Football FanCast predicts that Dyche could make two changes from the team that sent the Bees packing at Goodison last weekend.

In goal, Jordan Pickford will retain his unwavering role as the Toffees’ shot-stopper, having recorded an average rating of 6.93 in the Premier League this term and saved 70% of his shots faced, as per Sofascore.

Despite defeating the high-flying Bees at Goodison Park last week, two alterations could be made across the back-line, with Conor Coady returning in place of Michael Keane, while Vitalii Mykolenko’s dynamism and sting could be a worthwhile tool to wield against the Blues, having missed out on a starting berth last time out in the place of the "monster" that is the £75k-per-week Ben Godfrey, as hailed by the Mirror's James Whaling.

Dyche might be inclined to utilise the same midfield that grounded Brentford last week, with homegrown talent Tom Davies only making a substitute appearance once again previously, journalist Greg O'Keeffe consequently stating the 24-year-old is "struggling to deliver performances."

Alex Iwobi and match-winner McNeil will again occupy the wide roles, the latter undoubtedly galvanised by his integral recent contribution and the £35m Nigerian international recording eight assists across all competitions this term.

Demarai Gray, the Toffees’ top goalscorer this season with six strikes - double the tally of McNeil, who is behind the dynamic forward - was impressive in his dynamic role last week, and should occupy the centre-forward position once more due to Calvert-Lewin’s woes.

2023-03-18T12:37:30Z dg43tfdfdgfd