IT SAYS something of the threat we carry when the champions change their team selection significantly at home specifically to deal with the danger we pose.
Despite an impressive run of clean sheets, Mancini broke up his defensive centre to recall his best aerial stopper Lescott whilst key man Aguero was left out.
When the Argentine was introduced it was top scorer Tevez who made way and not Dzeko.
The Bosnian has a reputation as a ‘super sub’ but is consistently selected against us from the start for his aerial ability in defending set plays.
Post match Mancini said: “You need your attackers to help you defend, especially when you play a team like Everton who are good at set pieces.”
Yaya Toure was also held back to concentrate on marking Fellaini from Howard’s goal kicks.
Our defensive approach was all about shape and making the pitch as small as possible and less so about pressing the ball.
Mancini’s petty rants about us are now customary but there is clear praise if you delve deeper into his post match comments.
He talked about ‘no team’ being able to defend better than the Blues in the league, leading him to propose that there is ‘maybe no solution’ to breaking us down.
Coming from an Italian coach well versed in the principal of catenaccio that’s quite a compliment.
A touch run of fixtures concludes on Sunday when a win against Andre Villas-Boas’ Spurs could possibly see us rise as high as third in the table – a situation most Toffees would have taken at the start of this three-game run against tasty opposition.
With Mirallas set to return, we should go into the game pretty much at full strength with a clear week to prepare.
Spurs, on the other hand, have a crucial Europa League game on Thursday night and will be without injured star man Gareth Bale for both games.
Villas-Boas has received unwarranted hostility since arriving in the Premier League with widespread scepticism of his methods at both clubs he has managed.
Since taking the reigns from wide boy operator and serial tap-up merchant of Toffee talent Harry Redknapp, his results have been mixed but recent form is very good.
Ever since the age of 17, when Villas-Boas produced his first scout report for Bobby Robson at Porto, the Portuguese has been making a living out of diligently and successful studying opposition teams and plotting ways to beat them.
I’d much rather have that intel in my locker than the brash bravado of his predecessor.
Hopefully, his post match analysis of Sunday’s fixture will make for uncomfortable viewing.