The Blues will find out their opponents in the semi-finals of the FA Cup when the draw takes place tomorrow evening but with six weeks to go until that date at Wembley, the focus returns to the bread and butter of the League where Roberto Martinez's side continue to struggle for consistency.
Everton are next in action on Saturday when they take on an Arsenal side who are in danger being turfed out of two cup competitions in the space of a few days when they face the Herculean task of overcoming a 2-0 deficit to Barcelona in the Nou Camp.
A win over the perennial top-four finishers to add to Everton's victory over Chelsea yesterday would go a long way towards restoring morale in the camp and could spur the Blues to a strong finish over the final quarter of the campaign.
“There was real disappointment in the changing room [after the West Ham defeat] but on Saturday night there was a real buzz about the place," McCarthy told the Liverpool Echo of the atmosphere after the 2-0 triumph over Guus Hiddink's men. “It was one of the best atmospheres I’ve ever experienced at Goodison. The derby is always special and you get that buzz but Saturday night was right up there, it was a real livewire atmosphere and it’s how we want it to be every week when we play here.”
“It was really intense, we took it to them and after a couple of half chances we got a good goal at the right time and the second finishes the game off.
“We’re looking forward to the semi-final but, for now, most important is the league and making sure we kick on. We know the home form hasn’t been good enough. [W]e know the talent we’ve got in the squad. We’ve been conceding poor goals but now it’s all about finishing strongly and kicking on."
There had been suggestions in the lead-up to the game in a couple of press reports that some of the senior players in Martinez's squad had been questioning the manager's methods but there was no sign of disharmony as Everton put on one of their best team displays of the season to eliminate Chelsea thanks to two fine goals by Romelu Lukaku.
And McCarthy was adamant in rejecting the notion of unrest among the players.
“I don’t know where that is coming from,” the Irish international continued. “Each and everyone of us is in it together and we’ve got a good squad here and good management looking after us.
“The chairman and, now, Farhad Moshiri...it’s exciting. Hopefully we can keep our big assets and we want to finish the season as strong as we can and get a good end to the season."
Reader Comments (37)
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1 Posted 13/03/2016 at 19:45:06
2 Posted 13/03/2016 at 19:48:21
3 Posted 13/03/2016 at 19:51:01
But being Everton.....
4 Posted 13/03/2016 at 19:54:38
5 Posted 13/03/2016 at 20:00:43
The League campaign was blown along time ago. We are now just playing for pride and a bit of extra dosh for finishing that little bit higher. We've suffered due to bad tactics and the players being a bunch of characterless weaklings for the most part.
Winning the FA Cup is the only way for redemption.
6 Posted 13/03/2016 at 20:15:08
All the remaining teams will fear us more than us them.
7 Posted 13/03/2016 at 20:15:33
We are the worst draw mate, none of the remaining teams will want to meet Everton in a Wembley semi-final.
8 Posted 13/03/2016 at 20:17:41
9 Posted 13/03/2016 at 20:19:12
That said, they know that if they don't comply with the idiotic tactics that Martinez resorts to time and again, then they pay the penalty. Eto'o and Distin, at their age, had little to lose by speaking up. The rest of the squad have a future in the game and many, like McCarthy, may have realised that their own career is likely going downwards as and when Martinez marks their card, requiring them to seek pastures new at lesser clubs.
If McCarthy, Jags, Seamus, Bainsey, Rom and Gazza all spoke en masse at Finch Farm, in the way all of them have done this season on the above "catalyst" mantra, then maybe we wouldn't be in the bottom half of the league. Just maybe we'd have been battling for a CL place.
The buck stops with our man with a newly tightened arsehole. Si senor?
10 Posted 13/03/2016 at 20:22:40
Palace and Watford will play with a happy-to-be-here abandonment and represent huge Banana skins.
11 Posted 13/03/2016 at 20:30:00
I don't think you can gloss over the poor performances over the past 18 months, just because we have progressed to a cup semi final. While there was a lot of effort expanded the other night, there was very little between the teams.
Lukaku's brilliant solo effort also begs the question who will score the goals if he gets injured for the semi? I wouldn't fancy us with Kone or Niasse up front, so we will have to hope that Lukaku doesn't pick up an injury that would keep him out of the semi.
12 Posted 13/03/2016 at 21:20:59
13 Posted 13/03/2016 at 22:17:27
We've been woeful in the league this season but cup runs divert attention away from the fact Martinez is not the man to take this club where we want it to be.
14 Posted 13/03/2016 at 22:19:16
15 Posted 13/03/2016 at 22:45:17
16 Posted 13/03/2016 at 22:58:51
18 Posted 13/03/2016 at 23:01:32
I'll never go into any game confident under this manager because we've threw too many games away in calamitous fashion. That said, if we approach the rest of the games this season the way we approached last night, pressing high up and harrying the ball, we won't go far wrong.
19 Posted 13/03/2016 at 23:26:40
We know full well that this side is capable of beating what is left in the comp. The bookies know it too. Feels like it will now be our approach that decides it, rather than the opposition.
Which Everton side turns up in the semis? Can we show the same intensity when we know we're the better footballing team? The answer to that this season has been a mixed bag.
20 Posted 13/03/2016 at 23:34:27
Sorry for the negative talk but come on.
21 Posted 13/03/2016 at 23:56:46
I am perfectly happy for WHU to remain favourites because the pressure will build on them and I don't think that they're all that. They're too reliant on a couple of tricks (set pieces).
WE CAN DO THIS!
We have the best striker, the best defence (when they don't mess about) and the best creative midfielder in the shape of Barkley.
22 Posted 13/03/2016 at 00:21:23
I'm with Brian #11 and,Gary #13. Even if we win the cup and I hope we do, it doesn't change my opinion that RM is not the man to take us forward into another season of poor league performances, lots of promise, but no final delivery. It would be too easy to get carried away and say all is forgiven after last night but one good result does not excuse all the poor ones that have gone before, the inept in game management, totally stupid substitutions, sometimes no subs at all, and the constant rhetoric about us being far better than we are.
The one thing RM has failed to deliver is consistency, and he has shown his inability to mould a set of talented players into a TEAM in the real sense of the word. I'm sorry Roberto, but to use an old phrase, one swallow doesn't make a summer and even if we win the cup, recall you did that with Wigan and look where they ended up. I'm not being negative, but I think I'm beng realistic. If we are to challenge for a top four or even a top six of lace next season we need a new, strong manager who will help our players become the team they should be, rather than an extension of Roberto's experimental philosophy, which has failed dismally over not one, but two consecutive seasons of frustrating under-achievement.
Alan Bodell #12, I too was at the 66 final, my first too. Be nice to see history repeat itself.
23 Posted 14/03/2016 at 09:20:00
24 Posted 14/03/2016 at 12:38:57
25 Posted 14/03/2016 at 12:57:25
If we get one of the Atkinson, Clattenburg, Mason, Moss or Marriner, then we are as likely to go out to a string of poor decisions...
26 Posted 14/03/2016 at 13:26:25
27 Posted 14/03/2016 at 15:04:05
I know I don't need to read these articles but it seems after every defeat "there's a determination to turn things around" and after every victory the players "hope that they can kick on".
It's real page filler stuff.
28 Posted 14/03/2016 at 15:07:24
Hopefully, Mo Besic will be in on Saturday for Barry, it should be interesting. I don't have any problem with these soundbytes, the players are obliged to communicate through the media. All clubs do it, I can just to without some of the more nonsensical stuff the manager comes out with.
29 Posted 14/03/2016 at 15:44:32
30 Posted 14/03/2016 at 16:03:38
*Okay, for political correctness' sake 'girl' and 'she'
31 Posted 14/03/2016 at 16:15:52
32 Posted 14/03/2016 at 16:54:34
We shouldn't need to win a cup game in March to kickstart our league form. Shouldn't the kickstart be at the beginning of the season or early on after some poor form??? We have heard this all season long from players and the manager. Every time win a game or two in a row then suddenly we are ready to kick on and climb the table.
The problem is that it never happens and hasn't all season long. The league season is over apart from us trying to climb a couple of places for prize money and for Roberto to possibly save his job with a slightly higher league finish.
33 Posted 14/03/2016 at 18:00:55
The FA Cup appears to be the other way round this year. I can't see anyone to fear.
And Everton is way ahead in the Betfair FA Cup market.
34 Posted 14/03/2016 at 18:07:15
35 Posted 14/03/2016 at 19:01:56
At least we can understand the points that James is making without reading the content over and over.
I have just heard FSW commenting on how impressed he was with the quality on display at the Newcastle training sessions. What else would one expect him to say, apart from preface quote with FACT?
36 Posted 15/03/2016 at 10:30:05
I know this is going to sound mercenary, but anyway, let's hope Martinez wins the cup for us; after all, he owes it to us, to compensate for his (up until now), questionble management.
Let's hope our success in the cup (if any!), can attract other big managers with the knowledge and knowhow to lead us into Champions League positions. We are a great club and we deserve it! COYB
37 Posted 15/03/2016 at 18:14:05
38 Posted 20/03/2016 at 19:41:45
He's one of the reasons we're not getting anywhere. A skilless. guileless, clodhopper who keeps getting picked because apparently he runs a lot. Well I think we can do a lot better than him.
£13,000,000 waste of space.
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