Everton boss Roberto Martinez insists all of the pressure should be on big-spending Liverpool ahead of the Merseyside derby on Sunday.
The Toffees go into the contest in encouraging form, having taken eight points from their previous four Premier League matches to climb tofifth in the table.
That is four places higher than the Reds, whose victory over Aston Villa last Saturday was their first in five league fixtures.
However, Martinez has suggested expectation should be on Brendan Rodgers’ men due to what they have paid out in the transfer market.
The combined total of the fees for Liverpool’s signings this summer came to around £80million, roughly four times that of Everton’s.
Martinez said on Friday: ”If you take the way we have started, we are showing a little bit of form and that could see us as favourites.
”But if you look at it in terms of the amount of money Liverpool spent over the last three seasons, clearly they need to be the favourites and the ones carrying expectations.”
Rodgers has been under considerable pressure of late, but Martinez says it is “normal” for a manager at their level.
”I think the pressure is the nature of the game,” he said.
”It is normal and it goes with not winning games. If you win, you are just looking forward to the next game, if you don’t, you are under pressure. I think we all accept that.”
Everton last beat Liverpool five years ago and Martinez, who has been Toffees manager for the last two seasons, is eager to get his first Merseyside derby victory on the board.
”I know how important it is to get a victory in the derby,” he said.
”You only need to speak with our fans – building up to the game, it has an extra significant meaning.
”Getting three points would allow us to make a really promising start a really exciting start, and the derby is a fixture in which we want to give our fans a real sense of satisfaction.”
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