Everton v Middlesbrough - Saturday 17:30, BT Sport 1
Everton continue to impress under Ronald Koeman, recording an easy win over Sunderland last weekend. It was the Toffees’ second consecutive clean sheet and they have plenty of experience in defence both out wide and in the centre, with Gareth Barry and quietly impressive new signing Idrissa Gueye protecting the back four.
Romelu Lukaku’s goal drought was the only negative so far for Everton and that was emphatically addressed with an 11-minute hat-trick. The big Belgian also scored twice for the national side during the break, and can be backed as the first goalscorer here at 5.5.
Middlesbrough succumbed to their first defeat of the season at home to Palace, but despite this setback Aitor Karanka will be content with five points from four games. Gaston Ramirez and Cristhian Stuani should return to the starting 11 this week, whilst Alvaro Negredo remains a key player for Boro having created two and scored another of the four goals they’ve managed so far this season.
With the way Everton are playing and the balance they have in their team tactically, it is easy to envision them finishing high up the table this season. Boro have shown themselves to be a more complete team than many had anticipated, but Everton with home advantage and plenty of attacking talent should see them off. We’re backing the Everton win to nil at 2.8.