Carlo Ancelotti says Everton will do all they can to make sure they end their run of three league games without a win by beating neighbours Liverpool on Saturday.
The Toffees were beaten 3-1 by Manchester City on Wednesday, their second consecutive league defeat. Those losses come on the back of the dramatic 3-3 draw with Manchester United.
That leaves them seventh in the table and means they have missed out on the chance to close in on the top four.
But despite their form, Ancelotti insists this weekend’s Merseyside derby at Anfield is a “fantastic opportunity” for his side to get back on track.
Asked by Amazon Prime where the loss to City leaves Everton ahead of their meeting with the Reds, Ancelotti said: “We don’t need to have regrets tonight. The regrets were against Fulham, not tonight.
“But we have to try and get points [against Liverpool] because it’s a fantastic opportunity and an exciting game.
“We know how important for our supporters this game is. We’ll do all we need to try and get the result on Saturday.”
Everton’s defeat to the runaway leaders also means they have lost two consecutive home games. In fact, they are without a victory on their own patch in their last five league outings there.
Liverpool v Everton Match Preview, February 20, 2021
A look ahead to the Premier League game between Liverpool and Everton, including stats on form, possession, shots, cards, corners, top scorers and previous meetings.
But it’s a very different story on the road. They are unbeaten on their travels since 1st November, winning five and drawing two of their away fixtures since.
And with that in mind, Ancelotti joked that playing the derby away from their own ground could be a good thing.
“I think the derby is a special game,” he added. “And also, away we have a really good run, so we hope for this [to continue].”
Should they pick up three points on Saturday, it would be the first time they have won at Anfield since 1999. But with Liverpool currently on a three-game losing run at home themselves, the Blues may fancy their chances.
Ancelotti crowns City champions
The Italian manager also believes Manchester City have already effectively won this season’s title. Their win at Everton put them 10 points clear at the top with 14 games left to play.
It was also their 17th straight win in all competitions, with Pep Guardiola’s side looking an unstoppable machine.
Questioned whether his side had just lost to the champions, Ancelotti said: “I think so. It’s really difficult to say another name than Man City in this moment.
“They are in a good move. They have fantastic quality, they have belief, they are strong. We tried to put out a strong side for the game but it was difficult against Rodrigo, against [Ruben] Dias, [Aymeric] Laporte.”
He was then asked if City are the best team he has come up against this year, to which he definitively replied: “Yes, absolutely yes. Congratulations to them.”