Everton head into Watford encounter with unwanted Premier League record

Everton host Watford on the opening day of the season.

Everton have been handed a rather fortunate start to the campaign, taking on a newly-promoted Watford side who enter the Goodison Park encounter with their fifth manager in 18 months.

With plenty of new recruits and fresh ideas to bed in, many are predicting the Hornets to get off to slow start in their bid for Premier League survival in the coming campaign.

Their summer of change stands in stark contrast to that of their opening days opponents Everton, with Roberto Martinez’s side remaining fairly stable and quiet in the transfer market.

Three players have joined the Toffees this summer, while those to have departed have done on the club's terms and much-coveted defender John Stones is still under wraps on Merseyside.

Everything points to a settled side full of confidence, and one which should dispatch Watford fairly comfortably on Saturday. However, there is one key factor which goes against them.

As per Opta Stats, Everton’s opening day Premier League record is not one of success, as a total of 35 goals have been conceded - more than any other team in the division.

The Goodison Park outfit have won just one of their last seven opening day fixtures, a poor run which has seen some surprising results - including a 6-1 home defeat to Arsenal in the 2009/10 season.

The previous two campaigns have seen opening 2-2 draws with Norwich City and Leicester City respectively, results which brought their fair share of positives and negatives.

Saturday’s match with Watford may not be one of the day’s standout fixtures, and for once Martinez will be hoping his side stay out of the limelight by completing a relatively low-key victory.

Register for EVERTON team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch