Roberto Martinez expressed his satisfaction with last evening’s 3-1 win at Aston Villa which represented Everton’s fifth win in six games in all competitions.
An early header off a corner by the Blues’ outstanding player on the night, Ramiro Funes Mori, set them on their way to a comfortable if unspectacular victory over seemingly doomed Aston Villa that was completed by another goal from Aaron Lennon and a Premier League record-setting strike by Romelu Lukaku.
"I’m really pleased because, obviously, the start of the game was really good [from our point of view],” the manager said after the match. "We expected a really tense game. I think when you get to this stage of the season, every point matters and playing way from home you’re going to get to adapt to that intensity that the home side brings.
"I thought we started really, really well and from that point on, at times we had to defend well and I thought Aston Villa pushed us a lot with a new formation [that had] a lot of width and [they put] a lot of balls in the box.
"Throughout, we defended really well and it was well worth an important win for us.
"You always want to be perfect,” he continued when asked if he felt his team could have scored more than the three they managed. "I thought the goal we conceded was a little soft. We had a player off the pitch and we almost allowed them to have a bit too much space in the box but we took [our] goals really well, we were really clinical, ruthless, in that respect and then we created other chances.
"Of course you want to score more but I thought, overall, we managed the game well enough when we were ahead. It’s always difficult when you’re away from home to get composure throughout the 90 minutes and I thought we had that.
Asked if he felt that a top-six finish was a realistic possibility, Martinez suggested, in not so many words, that that was the goal and that his side were now well placed to push up the table, particularly if they can sort out their home form.
"I feel the squad is in a really good moment,” he continued. "We’ve got really good competition for places [and] we’ve been very consistent over the past six games, even if we lost one of those [against West Brom]. So the consistency of our performances have been very good, we’re in a good vein of form, we’re enjoying our football with a lot of confidence and it’s just [about] making sure that we go game by game with the understanding that every point will get us closer to where we want to get.
"Now we want to get wins at Goodison in front of our fans. That’s probably where we’ve not been as good as we can this season.
Reader Comments (94)
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1 Posted 02/03/2016 at 18:20:44
No 'probably' about it, sunshine...
2 Posted 02/03/2016 at 18:33:32
Got loads of that pie here for him to eat.
3 Posted 02/03/2016 at 18:39:17
4 Posted 02/03/2016 at 18:48:37
5 Posted 02/03/2016 at 18:50:38
Martinez has unearthed a gem in Funes Mori, and he can only get better with experience. Hopefully he gets on the free kicks around the box soon.
6 Posted 02/03/2016 at 18:54:59
7 Posted 02/03/2016 at 18:56:27
8 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:02:58
9 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:04:30
Bloody megateam Carlisle and Bournemouth reserves in the Cup;
The inform top of the league clubs Newcastle and Villa;
Top club in the Midlands, West Brom who BEAT us at home Roberto!!!
And okay, I accept a bit of a turn up winning at Stoke.
All in all I don't think we are in a "good moment".
His bullshit is getting worse.
10 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:05:17
I'm still of the opinion that Besic offers us much more than McCarthy. RM should of by now got us knitted together better. We have played much better and gotten nothing, so to play so-so and get 3...
Here's hoping we can kick on and get an actual win at Goodison on the weekend... because our home form is beyond embarrassing.
11 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:06:00
6 months later and we have a composed defender, good in the air and with attacking play to his game.
How many goals is it he's scored now? 4? Not a regular either so that's the most prolific centre-half we've had since a certain Joleon Lescott wore blue.
12 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:06:12
Well done, Funes Mori, for a super start to his English career.
13 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:08:10
14 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:12:18
Hopefully someone will sit him down and talk him through the bull he spouts and ask him to explain what it is he is actually saying.
One response I was taught when having no intention of answering the question is to respond by saying "that's a very good question, but before I answer it, I would just like to say" followed by the diatribe he comes out with.
He never seems to be challenged on his views. Perhaps his questioners are fed up asking?
15 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:12:27
16 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:16:07
I'm hopeful that Stones's drop in form/confidence is short-lived, but I'd like to see Jags and Funes Mori continue like this till the end of season.
17 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:18:19
18 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:26:46
19 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:36:48
20 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:41:56
We have the talent and there's no denying El Bob and his scouting staff can pick a player, eg, Funes Mori. Any early criticism of him was ludicrous as he was finding his feet in the most intense league in the world. He has now settled, and he is showing just what a good player he is. Another who will be circled by the vultures before long.
21 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:43:57
I was at the Reading game and echo your views that night.
I also agree with your assessment of Funes Mori since.
22 Posted 02/03/2016 at 19:49:08
Yes, we scored 3 and could've scored more but much of the game second best to an abject side beyond the Abyss.
I thankfully passed on attending last night, first time in about 10 years I've not gone to Villa away... maybe a while before I get back there again.
23 Posted 02/03/2016 at 20:05:27
Besic is a much better attacking option than McCarthy, who seems to relish in stopping people play more than creating anything for our attacking players.
If Martinez has any ambition of finishing in the European positions, then maybe it would help if we only played one defensive midfielder at home and tried to get the ball forward quicker.
24 Posted 02/03/2016 at 20:20:50
1. When Funes Mori showed up on our radar, Vickery chimed in to say that he'd seen him play and wasn't impressed at all. Vickery again repeated his opinion that Funes Mori wasn't very good and especially not for the price we were paying. (Remember that Funes Mori was WAY more expensive than we all originally thought.)
2. After Funes Mori's early performances were quite good, Vickery was THE FIRST GUY to stand up and write a lengthy column admitting how utterly, completely, and hilariously wrong he'd been.
Good gracious, imagine how much better the footballing world would be if every journalist or pundit had the balls to 1) give a straight opinion, even if it's not popular, and 2) admit openly when that prediction/opinion proves to be incorrect. The moral of the story here isn't that Vickery is an idiot it's that he's a frickin' hero by journalistic standards.
25 Posted 02/03/2016 at 20:20:54
By saying "....playing way from home you're going to get to adapt to that intensity that the home side brings" Martinez wins the Basil Fawlty prize for stating the bleedin' obvious but is he even aware that teams visiting Goodison largely don't have that problem due to his own repeatedly inept "tactics"? How deluded can he be?
27 Posted 02/03/2016 at 21:42:51
28 Posted 02/03/2016 at 21:48:56
29 Posted 02/03/2016 at 21:58:18
30 Posted 02/03/2016 at 22:05:48
Sorry about that Scott I must have missed that one.
Any links please?
31 Posted 02/03/2016 at 22:14:27
Personally despite the result there was quite a bit about last night's game that was unconvincing.
We've now got 3 home games to demonstrate we mean business.
32 Posted 02/03/2016 at 22:20:16
Besic is fit to play but I was hoping for Cleverley in front of Baines.
34 Posted 02/03/2016 at 22:23:39
35 Posted 02/03/2016 at 22:26:51
Martinez will be judged by the new man in the close season to see if he can take this talented (and soon to be improved) squad forward. if not, he will be replaced.
So let's try and enjoy the rest of the season without too much anguish and look forward, hopefully, to a more productive and enjoyable season.
36 Posted 02/03/2016 at 22:29:23
37 Posted 02/03/2016 at 22:32:11
38 Posted 02/03/2016 at 22:35:35
He's had 17 minutes!!!
39 Posted 02/03/2016 at 22:40:04
Deep down, I know what I expect to happen but to be honest I suspect, like many of us, I'm sick of talking about the ongoing question of will he/won't he learn, change, listen or whatever.
The next 3 games may be key in answering those questions but I've already written the answers and placed them in a sealed envelope which I've fed to the dog!
40 Posted 02/03/2016 at 22:50:41
West Ham will be a tough test on Saturday which is good in a way. We seem to struggle at home against weaker teams. Having said that, Swans beat Arsenal away and WBA have had good results since playing us. Crazy league this year.
41 Posted 02/03/2016 at 22:50:52
42 Posted 02/03/2016 at 22:55:03
43 Posted 02/03/2016 at 23:01:51
You can read his article, which is very lengthy, at the link below. The money quote, though, is this one:
"A frequent self-defence mechanism is to proclaim any player who puts together a sequence of solid games as some kind of phenomenon. It was not going to fool me! Perhaps, subconsciously, I was a little jaded by being exposed to an excess of mediocre South American club football, and I took this feeling out on one of the players. So when I watched Funes Mori I was blind to his improvement. I only saw the bad side because that is all I was looking for. I nodded sagely at his mistakes. They confirmed my pre-conceived view that had been formed in different circumstances, when he was still finding his feet and playing for a coach who was clearly not his biggest fan. Every time he was beaten for pace, played a poor pass out of defence or went to ground to tackle, I chalked it up as a moment that was representative of the player, while ignoring all the good things he was doing. Because it lacked the flexibility to take account of his development, my evaluation of him was unfair, and, as it has proved, unwise."
So when I watched Funes Mori I was blind to his improvement. I only saw the bad side because that is all I was looking for.
I nodded sagely at his mistakes. They confirmed my pre-conceived view that had been formed in different circumstances, when he was still finding his feet and playing for a coach who was clearly not his biggest fan.
Every time he was beaten for pace, played a poor pass out of defence or went to ground to tackle, I chalked it up as a moment that was representative of the player, while ignoring all the good things he was doing. Because it lacked the flexibility to take account of his development, my evaluation of him was unfair, and, as it has proved, unwise."
Full article here: http://theworldgame.sbs.com.au/blog/2015/11/08/my-funes-mori-faux-pas
44 Posted 02/03/2016 at 23:12:02
His preconceived ideas where based on the fact that Bobby s last signing from South America was Shite! " utterly, completely, and hilariously wrong"
Did not see any reference to this in the article. Just a lazy so called journalist who never done his homework properly then tried to talk his way out of his misguided judgment by quoting other failures from South America.
45 Posted 02/03/2016 at 23:29:58
Great to hear that he was chasing back and making tackles. Can't wait to see more of him on the pitch.
West Ham is going to be difficult game. But I believe we will win this Saturday.
46 Posted 02/03/2016 at 23:43:06
The only way we can push on this season is if we win the FA Cup as a woeful December and January cost us achieving anything in the Premier League. We can push on but he can push off.
47 Posted 02/03/2016 at 23:57:03
10 mins? Traore would've scored a hat trick in that time. Next
48 Posted 02/03/2016 at 23:58:42
Now it does not matter what we do because Man Utd, Liverpool, Chelsea and West Ham are all full of confidence and starting to play much better and we are 9 points away from a CL position and possibly playing worse than against WBA.
I hope our new investor asks him why with our GD did we not finish in the top 4? With the best 3 centre backs and the quality of our full backs coupled with all your published comments Roberto on the great play of all the players why did we not win more games?
Roberto's only chance of survival to 2018 now is 'to lose' Stones and Rom in the summer and he will need 2 or 3 more seasons to rebuild.
49 Posted 02/03/2016 at 00:07:35
There are around five teams that have under performed in the premier league so far this season. Five teams that have not really played great. Five teams that EFC supporters usually call shite. Those five teams(Liverpool...Man Utd...Chelsea.....Southampton....Man City). are all above us in the league. Add an under performing Arsenal also to that list. FFS..Stoke city and West Ham are above us.... My point is that....we are now going to push these teams. We couldn't push them when they are playing badly. We need to get our own house in order first. We need to start beating teams above us. A win against West Ham would be a start. Hopefully.
As stated ....this season has been crazy. Leicester City have taken advantage of that. We haven't. Lucky for Everton that they had the beating of three very poor teams( Villa..Sunderland and Newcastle). We would be really up shit creek, if the worst teams in the league were Palace..West Brom and Swansea and not those other three.
The evidence of the last 18 months is there for all to see. For most of that we have been poor. So sadly , I cannot see Everton pushing for a top six place. And do we really need a Europa Cup place? It stretched our squad last season. And you just know that league form next season would suffer. Martinez seems to throw everything at one cup at a time. The league form suffers, and midtable beckons.
So for me , just keep playing, pick up as many league points as possible. Get ideas and tactics in place for next season. Regroup and hopefully hit the ground running right from august. But also give this years FA cup a right old rattle. We can beat Chelsea. Arsenal and Man Utd can be beaten. We can win this cup. Martinez talks bollocks. But bring home the FA cup.......and I forgave him.........for now...
50 Posted 03/03/2016 at 01:04:58
51 Posted 03/03/2016 at 01:35:00
52 Posted 03/03/2016 at 02:24:21
53 Posted 03/03/2016 at 04:57:26
54 Posted 03/03/2016 at 06:48:42
Is he good enough and has he shown he is good enough? My opinion is NO!
All these 'great' signings mean nothing. Someone in an earlier post called him The Incredible Incapable One. Sounds about right.
55 Posted 03/03/2016 at 07:53:16
I simply can't see what people see in McCarthy. I have never seen a midfielder so incapable of any attacking intent, he just blunts the team, he is sleuth like in possession and allows opposition time to get organised defensively.
He typifies the Martinez way of taking an extra touch before telegraphing a pass (normally sideways). Besic plays instinctively with a single touch like Speed, Whiteside and Pienaar all did. It is the speed of movement that hurts teams. Spurs offered£20m for McCarthy to go and warm their bench, big mistake not taking it.
56 Posted 03/03/2016 at 08:04:56
McCarthy was outstanding at the holding midfield role in his first season barely putting a foot wrong but I do agree it's not happening for him and hasn't happened for him for a good year at least.
Possibly some of that has been down to the persistent niggly hamstring injuries, it could be playing on his mind that as soon as he sprints too much his muscle is going to fail again, if you recall his first season I don't think he missed a single game, he was an incredibly fit lad.
Besic looked like he was starting to show some real promise but again, the one thing that keeps coming into your mind is the injuries, he's spent an awful lot of time out this season with recurring injuries, I just hope he's not going to be another player in that mould, for some reason it just happens to certain player's, Gibson a classic example.
57 Posted 03/03/2016 at 08:50:11
58 Posted 03/03/2016 at 08:56:38
59 Posted 03/03/2016 at 09:03:24
I suspect he plays to orders in passing backwards and sideways. I still think he's crucial for us but agree that it would be great to see him running beyond and being more incisive, he is more than capable of it.
60 Posted 03/03/2016 at 09:22:14
61 Posted 03/03/2016 at 09:30:55
62 Posted 03/03/2016 at 09:43:10
63 Posted 03/03/2016 at 10:38:54
64 Posted 03/03/2016 at 10:46:12
The improvement in the West Ham team this season has been immense, extremely well organised, big strong physical unit but can play attractive football with pace and flair, as seen in wins away to Liverpool, Arsenal and Manchester City and hard fought wins like last night against Spurs, yes Tottenham weren't at it but the Hammers really stopped them playing.
It will rank as our best win of the season if we were to turn them over on Saturday but as someone posted earlier, it will need a vastly improved performance from Tuesday and more importantly a vastly improved home performance from the dross we have witnessed at Goodison this past year.
65 Posted 03/03/2016 at 11:27:24
He does not possess the attacking skills of Besic or Cleverley but Martinez will probably use him to combat the strong West Ham midfield.
66 Posted 03/03/2016 at 11:29:24
67 Posted 03/03/2016 at 11:38:58
Ranieri has moulded good and average players into a team.
Martinez has a far better squad but cannot mould them into a team.
Farhad Moshiri surely won't let this continue past the end of the season. Saturday may well seal his fate!
68 Posted 03/03/2016 at 11:52:12
We need a goalie in the summer of that there is no question. I think Stones - Funes Mori is the partnership with Coleman and Baines/Oviedo. Besic and McCarthy in front with a three of Barkley Deulofeu and Lennon. Lukaku up top. If we can keep all these, spend big on Butland or Forster, and keep everyone fit then we can challenge.
But, on to the article I'm not sure we can challenge with Roberto at the helm. I love the attacking mindset we have at times and we definitely play with more flair. He does get on my nerves with this "really good moment" nonsense he keeps spouting about players and the team and the club. Tactically though, I question his substitutions and selections as sometimes baffling. He can definitely scout a player, though, and ones that don't appear to be on everyone's radar.
70 Posted 03/03/2016 at 12:22:12
I also would like to see Gibson get some game time as he is such a lovely passer of the ball. However with Martinez having his favourites and his reluctance to rotate players I doubt if Gibson gets another chance.
71 Posted 03/03/2016 at 12:39:18
From the little I saw of him at Wigan and the much more I saw of him for Ireland he was/is as anonymous when his team are in possession as he is now.
I foresee little change, especially if Martinez (his long time mentor at this stage) is happy with what he currently sees.
72 Posted 03/03/2016 at 12:41:08
74 Posted 03/03/2016 at 12:42:19
Oh, I also hope he gives Niasse some quality minutes so we can really see what he is made of.
76 Posted 03/03/2016 at 12:49:00
All imminent midweeks are either scheduled for Europe or International friendlies.
77 Posted 03/03/2016 at 13:00:15
I'm not sure that would go down too well either.
Cut the bloke some slack he has to give interviews, and it must be difficult to come out with something new every few days that people haven't hear before especially in a foreign language.
78 Posted 03/03/2016 at 13:36:56
79 Posted 03/03/2016 at 13:47:14
80 Posted 03/03/2016 at 14:13:41
2 points dropped away at Chelsea
3 points missed at home West Brom
Free gift goals given to Leicester City...
I could go on, but our problem has not been being "in" or "out" of form, rather consistency. We could have won three of those games and have 7 points more than we have. Having beaten (a poor) Villa side away, I fully expect us to choke at home against West Ham, not because I'm being negative, rather that my experience of this season tells me that we will struggle at home all over again. The buck stops with the manager and while my expectations of this squad were not sky high this season, I expected better than I have seen so far.
7 more points so far would see us a point behind West Ham and actually breathing down the neck of a Champions League place as the top 4 are not streaking away. Coming into the form being talked about at this stage of the season could mean a chance of the top four. Based on what I have seen we will be lucky to finish in the top half.
Roberto Martinez, you have the opportunity to really achieve something with this magnificent football club, but you have to break out of your Wigan inflected mindset and get this team to perform with consistency. Nil satis nisi optimum!
81 Posted 03/03/2016 at 14:33:29
83 Posted 03/03/2016 at 14:59:51
Who's left? West Ham Ă‚â€“ we've got a great record against them but they're a different animal under Bilic. Southampton and Bournemouth are both unpredictable; Norwich, as I've said... and Arsenal. I don't fancy that with them still in the title hunt.
Our home form is what has let us down all season and I don't think it's going to change unless the manager changes his tactics... which we all know he won't.
84 Posted 03/03/2016 at 15:02:13
As I have said before they have some talented defenders but cannot tighten up when necessary. I always cross my fingers when any opposition get into Everton's half as they always look like getting a shot at goal. Pushing on would be nice but just when we expect that something drags us back again.
West Ham on Saturday could be a real test. They have some very dangerous players and are playing well but have one or two injuries at the back which may help Everton's cause but the defense has to play top notch to get the three points.
85 Posted 03/03/2016 at 15:17:59
Make no mistake, the weekend will be a much tougher match than we've had in at least two months.
If we win it will be great but I feel all the crap being spouted now about heading up the league needs to be put on hold. Fact is we're flipping 11th with 3/4 of the season gone! How about just the standard one game at a time? We're in no position to start talking about qualifying for Europe when we struggle to win at home.
We may 'only' be 8 points behind 6th but we'd have to overtake 5 teams to get there, i.e. hope those five don't also pick up points, assuming we do. That's the crux. Until we start beating teams above us, we can forget about moving meanfully up the table.
Onto West Ham.
86 Posted 03/03/2016 at 15:29:15
87 Posted 03/03/2016 at 16:19:32
He's also got more assists this year than I think McCarthy has in his entire time for us (slightly made that up but anyone know the real stats?).
McCarthy for me is still trading on potential. Yes, he gets around a lot and does some great defensive work buts that surely the minimum we should expect. He does not use the ball well enough and rarely if ever takes a game by the scruff of the neck as we have seen Besic do on occasion recently.
The Irishman is a solid 6 or 7 out of 10 every week player but I think we need a little bit better if we are to push on to the promised land of top 4....
88 Posted 03/03/2016 at 19:53:32
89 Posted 03/03/2016 at 20:03:11
90 Posted 03/03/2016 at 20:47:24
91 Posted 03/03/2016 at 20:58:09
92 Posted 03/03/2016 at 21:11:57
I think we will see Barry, Besic, Barkley as a 3. Martinez has consistently picked that trio against the better sides when he has had the option.
93 Posted 03/03/2016 at 21:16:15
Surely that is what the manager's future is dependant on and rightly so.
94 Posted 03/03/2016 at 21:30:53
Agree Bilic has got West Ham organised and the whole team battle well.
In saying that, we are better I think and if Rom can't score (providing he gets the service) against a bog standard centre half like Collins then I don't know.
This is indeed a big test for Martinez and one I feel he will pass on this occasion (I don't know why, I just feel it).
I would like to see our new signing getting some decent time on the pitch on Saturday.
95 Posted 03/03/2016 at 22:00:42
So still the scientific bullshit spouts forth from the deluded Spaniard's mouth. I just can't stand listening to it any more. Please God, or Mr Kenwright, or the new investor... will someone please SACK this fucking idiot?
96 Posted 04/03/2016 at 02:03:15
What does my crust in is getting poor results week after week (and I say this because we're still in the bottom half), month after month, season after season as it is now with Martinez, with no perceptible change of tactics, ever, from what he spouts on about as his "philosophy".
The scary thing is that he has zero history in the Premier League of being anything but a failure.
I admit that this season has been a marginal improvement on last season though, but there are some, and nobody more than Martinez when he eventually said it to excuse his own shortcomings, who will say that last season we were beset with the Europa Cup as an additional burden.
So let's look at this season;
In August we won 5 points from the 12 available, in September 7 from 9, October was 1 from 9, November 8 from 12 (Villa and Sunderland being the two victories), December 5 from 15, January 3 from 12, and February 6 from 9 (Newcastle being one of the two victories).
And some people still contend this charlatan as a credible manager for anyone at all in the Premier League, never mind us.
97 Posted 04/03/2016 at 09:43:02
I agree that all teams are capable of an off day and lose when they should have won, but my argument is that a greater level of consistency across the season would have seen us achieve more points. The "form" is misleading as we showed good form in the games I mentioned, including the home game against Stoke.
It was the consistency that was missing and that is the bit that I believe the manager is responsible for. Can you imagine David Moyes allowing the left-back to take throw-ins level with the opposition 18 yard box when 3-2 up against Stoke? It is those sort of decisions that lead to poor results and an inconsistent performance.
98 Posted 04/03/2016 at 14:02:29
99 Posted 04/03/2016 at 14:38:11
Maybe because its more important what you do with possession than just relying on possession getting you the right result.
SAF was often quoted as saying possession without penetration was worthless. Maybe RM needs to look at Leicester they are one of the worst sides at retaining possession yet are clear at the top. Ranieri was quoted as saying that his team was not equipped to play a possession based game. But he said we utilise the pace we have in the team.
So RM instead of having a one style fits all philosophy you might be better served if you adopt Ranieris philosophy, adopt a style that suits your players.
Just look at Guardiola Bayern play a high tempo game like Barca but Bayern are a lot more direct than Barca and rely on pacy wingers. Were Barca play through midfield a lot more than Bayern.
100 Posted 04/03/2016 at 18:19:20
Kieran Kinsella (#34) must have been taking the piss out of others as nobody can be capable of judging Niasse on the basis of the minuscule game time he has had so far. Example: rightly picking Funes Mori at first he looked quite ordinary (well, maybe OK).
Give the guy a chance to show what he can do! Kieran, not many picked up on the piss take but it was a good try!
In regards to RM... Here, in Jaca, Spain, watching a div of the Women's World Cup Ice Hockey reminds me of the American (in particular) system in the Ice game. That is that every player should be in exactly the right (prescribed) position at exactly the right time ...... no room for special talent???
I don't see RM using quite this rigid system for football. Hopefully, this will never occur either. I think RM likes to see entertaining, exciting football. Perhaps what he also needs to have on his coaching team is a defence expert also. This would seem to be the opposite of the Moyes era when defence was king and fuck the attack.
A bit of a ramble but I think you'll get the thought process!!??
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