Martinez: We haven’t lost the Everton fans

Matthew Briggs
Roberto Martinez: Thinks he's the right man for the job

Roberto Martinez says he has not lost the fans and says Everton will need their help in the second half of the season.

With the club languishing in 11th spot at the turn of the year and enduring four home defeats already this term the Everton boss has come under fire from sections of the Goodison Park faithful. Many fans believe the club, who have finished fifth, 11th and 11th in Martinez’s three season’s in charge, are underachieving, but Martinez believes the majority of supporters are with him.

“We’ve never lost them,” said Martinez, when asked if Everton have to win the fans back.

“The fans see a fully committed team who give everything. We always fight until the end and some of the attacking football this season has been outstanding.

“The performances have been very consistent, but we need the help of our fans.

“We have been in commanding positions at some points and lost leads. We need the help of everyone,” added Martinez.

Martinez, whose men face Man City in the League Cup semi-final, first leg at Goodison on Wednesday night is convinced the atmosphere at home will have a big part to play against Manuel Pellegrini’s men.

“We need to be aware of the special side that we have. We shouldn’t worry about losing players because if we do it is for football reasons.

“The players we have now, for me, are world class.

“The fans are showing the great frustration we share, we have to be patient, we can’t just become, overnight, a good team and have the experience and know-how to keep the leads and win games,” added Martinez.

Martinez says his squad looks in good shape ahead of Wednesday’s first leg.

“We have no setbacks from the game we played against Spurs, so we have the same squad available for Wednesday.

“Tom Cleverley came through well. Phil Jagielka is ready to play, but the weekend is a better time. For James (McCarthy), every day is important. It won’t be too far, probably the end of the month.

“Steven Pienaar is working well and should be available for the weekend,” added Martinez.

The Toffees boss also admitted his squad was too big, but claimed he is still keen to keep the unsettled Kevin Mirallas.

“What we have seen with Kevin is that he’s signed a new contract, had a good pre-season but we have really good attacking options.

“But the way he has been working in the last few weeks, I expect Kevin to have a major, major influence in the second half of the season.”