Jamie O’Hara has stated that he believes Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford had an advantage over penalty taker James Maddison during last night’s 2-2 draw.
The £30m stopper had clearly done his homework on Leicester’s penalty takers and checked his water bottle for notes prior to Maddison stepping up.
Pickford’s preparation clearly worked as the 29-year-old saved the first half penalty to keep Everton in the game, though Jamie O’Hara has questioned whether such tactics should be allowed.
Speaking on talkSPORT, O’Hara discusses the topic of goalkeepers having information on opposition penalty takers prior to each game and debates with Jason Cundy whether it should be allowed.
O’Hara says: “The Pickford one with the water bottle. Do you think that should be allowed? You’re getting knowledge while you’re in the game. Maddison hasn’t got the knowledge of where Pickford goes”
He continues: “Maddison’s percentages were 60% down the middle. He (Pickford) has got all that information. They all do their homework but should it be allowed on a water bottle?
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I don’t think they should be allowed the info on a water bottle. I don’t know if I like it. Because you’re giving the advantage to the goalkeeper.”
Pickford earned Everton a point, but they need more for PL survival
Jordan Pickford’s penalty kept Everton in the game, with Leicester 2-1 up as the first half drew to a close. Indeed, the Blues had taken the lead through a Dominic Calvert-Lewin penalty 15 minutes in, before Caglar Soyuncu equalised just seven minutes later.
The Foxes then went a goal up through Jamie Vardy in an action packed opening period when the England international also hit the bar. Indeed, the game could have been beyond Everton by half-time had James Maddison converted his penalty, but Pickford’s homework paid off.
Everton restored parity in the second half thanks to an Alex Iwobi strike as Pickford’s penalty save assisted the Toffees in getting a valuable point on the road.
Ultimately, football is a statistics-based sport and Pickford’s diligence in revising his opponents’ habits is simply a part of the modern game, it is also one of the factors that make him a top class goalkeeper.