The 2015/16 season could easily have been a vintage one for Everton. The Toffees made the semi-finals of both the FA Cup and League Cup and were within a whisker of making the finals of both.
As it was the campaign will be remembered for the fans losing faith in Roberto Martinez’s inability to organise a defence and the charismatic Spaniard paid with his job after the penultimate game – a thrashing at the hands of Sam Allardyce’s Sunderland.
What happens next is anyone’s guess, although the signs look promising. Billionaire investor Farhad Moshiri has become the club’s majority shareholder and his promise of significant transfer funds tempted Ronald Koeman to relocate from Southampton.
Reasons to be cheerful:
Koeman is well-respected and should solve many of the defensive issues the club experienced last season. The club have a large transfer war chest and are expected to invest heavily in new players before the end of the month.
Reasons to be fearful:
Money doesn’t guarantee success and the new TV deal means the extra investment may not have as big as impact as it might once have. John Stones, the young England centre-back, has been heavily linked with a move to Manchester City and is unlikely to still be an Everton player at the end of the transfer window.
Star striker Romelu Lukaku may also be keen on a move away while Leighton Baines’ best days seem behind him.
Maarten Stekelenburg (Fulham, undisclosed), Bassala Sambou (Coventry, compensation), Chris Renshaw (Oldham, undisclosed), Idrissa Gueye (Aston Villa, £7.1m).
Out the door:
Leon Osman (released), Tony Hibbert (released), Tim Howard (Colorado Rapids, free), Steven Pienaar (released), Jordan Thorniley (Sheffield Wednesday, undisclosed), Jindrich Stanek (released), Felipe Mattioni (released), Conor Grant (Ipswich, loan).
Romelu Lukaku – The Belgian striker bagged 18 goals last term and will be crucial to Ronald Koeman’s plans this term.
One to watch:
Brendan Galloway – the young defender was given a taste of the big time last season and will be keen to establish himself in the side.
First five games:
Tottenham (H), West Brom (A), Stoke (H), Sunderland (A), Middlesbrough (H).Click on your favourite club's name below for BT Sport's full preview:
Arsenal, Bournemouth, Burnley, Chelsea, Crystal Palace, Everton, Hull City, Leicester City, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Middlesbrough, Southampton, Stoke City, Sunderland, Swansea City, Tottenham Hotspur, Watford, West Bromwich Albion, West Ham United.