Everton vs Dynamo Kiev – Match Preview.

Everton vs Dynamo Kiev – Match Preview.

Everton will want to take focus away from their poor league form and progress into the last eight of the Europa League when they host Dynamo Kiev on Thursday evening.

The Merseyside team performance in the Premier League this season has been very poor with their narrow 1-0 win over Crystal Palace on the final day of January was the last time that the tasted victory in the league. They have drew two and lost two since then which has led manager Roberto Martinez to admit that they are in a relegation battle. Contrast that with their performance in Europe and they look a completely different team, they have pulled off some impressive victories so far defeating competition favourites Wolfsburg twice in the group stages and convincingly beat Young Boys 4-1 and 3-1 to reach this point in the competition.

Dynamo Kiev should not be underestimated however as they have shown equally impressive in the Europa League as well as domestically, they currently sit atop of the Ukrainian League seven points ahead of their closest rivals Shakhtar Donetsk and remain unbeaten with 13 victories and three draws. Their Europa league form is equally impressive just losing the once in the group stages and managed to battle back from a 2-1 defeat in the first leg away to Guingamp to defeat them 3-1 to set up this tie.

Martinez is likely to be without; Tony Hibbert, Steven Pienaar, Aiden McGeady and Bryan Oviedo who are all recovering from injuries, he will also need to play Steven Naismith, Romelu Lukaku and Muhamed Besic with caution as they trio are one booking away from a suspension. John Stones is expected to return alongside Phil Jagielka after serving his suspension and Leighton Baines is expect to be in contention for a start after recently suffering with a thigh injury.

A huge blow for Kiev is that they will be without their key central midfielder Serhiy Rybalka as he suspended but Sergiy Sydorchuk who is returning from his own suspension is expected to slot in as his replacement. A doubt for the trip to Goodison Park is Jeremain Lens as the Dutchman went off in the 1-0 victory over Olimpik Donetsk on Sunday.

Written by Danial Kennedy [@danialkennedy95]