Rafael Benitez remains confident that Everton will get back on track despite suffering another setback with a 1-0 defeat to Brentford on Sunday.
Everton have hit a difficult patch of form recently. Their winless run extended to seven games with a defeat by a solitary goal to Brentford. Ivan Toney scored the only goal from the penalty spot in the 24th minute after a high challenge from Andros Townsend on Frank Onyeka.
Benitez was not a popular choice when he was appointed as the new Everton boss in the summer, due to his previous connection with rivals Liverpool. He made a good start in the Goodison Park dugout to win over some doubters, but the pressure on his position could already be on the increase.
Some travelling Everton fans gave the team a bad reception after the game, but Benitez insists the frustrations are shared.
“We can understand the frustration of the fans but we are also frustrated,” he said.
“Today you cannot complain about the effort and intensity the players put in. They try until the end.
“We had a lot of crosses and shots, so you cannot complain about the effort. But you can be disappointed because obviously we do not want to lose.
“We didn’t deserve to lose but the reality is the team is giving everything on the pitch and you can see the togetherness of the players.
“If we consider what we did at the beginning of the season, we saw enough quality to know we can be doing much better.
“But even the games we draw (against Manchester United and Tottenham), the team was doing enough to get more from these games.
“It is a question of confidence, missing players but you could see what we were capable of doing at the beginning of the season. When we have everyone available, I am confident we will do it again.”
Everton are currently 14th in the Premier League on 15 points.
Thomas Frank thankful for ‘vital’ win over Rafael Benitez and Everton
Brentford, meanwhile, have risen above their opponents in the table. They are now in 12th place on 16 points.
This was their first home win in the Premier League since the opening day, when they defeated Arsenal. It also ended a run of five games in the league without a win.
Their manager Thomas Frank thinks they have been deserving more from those games. They had to find the right qualities to put that right, though.
“We hadn’t won in five. We deserved more in those games and everyone knows it. But to get the win you need to defend well and we got back to top-level defending today,” Frank said.
“And finally we got the home win we have been searching for and fighting very hard to get.
“It was a fantastic atmosphere and especially at the end. So for many reasons it was a vital win.”