Boss wants some TLC from supporters ahead of Palace clash

Paul Thomas

Roberto Martinez has revealed his players were stung by the seemingly unjust defeat to Spurs at the weekend and has called on the home fans to give them some love at Goodison Park on Wednesday.

The Toffees had the better of the first half at White Hart Lane but failed to convert their possession into clear cut chances.

Tottenham meanwhile didn't even have a shot on target until the 64th minute, but unfortunately it resulted in the only goal of the game from Emmanuel Adebayor.

Replays later showed that the quick free kick that led to the goal was taken ten yards away from where the (dubiously given) offence was made, meaning referee Mark Clattenburg should have called play back in order for the kick to be taken from the correct position.

It still doesn't excuse the way Everton switched off, but does give the players just reason to feel a little aggrieved. After all, Everton have only allowed their opponents three shots on target in 180 minutes of football but conceded two goals.

The third shot meanwhile was a Jermain Defoe effort in injury time as the Blues pushed men forward in search of an equaliser.

At the other end Seamus Coleman thought he was tripped by Etienne Capoue in the penalty area, but Clattenburg once again said no.

I can understand his reasoning - he will claim Coleman was not in control of the ball when he was tripped. But on another day that could have gone our way.

And like most Blues I haven't forgotten Clattenburg's Merseyside derby performance in 2007 and feel he shouldn't be refereeing at all let alone taking charge of an Everton game.

All this explains why the boss has called on the supporters to provide some home comforts ahead of the Crystal Palace game on Wednesday evening.

The Villa game earlier this month soothed the pain of the Anfield defeat and put the season back on course. The Spurs loss is also a severe setback, but a win against an ever-improving Palace side will boost morale ahead of Sunday's FA Cup tie with Swansea, a match that has now taken on greater significance given our fading top four hopes.

The boss said:

"We need to get our self-esteem back where it belongs.

"The feeling we were left with on Sunday was very unfair, and we’ll need a little bit of TLC and warmth from our fans, so playing at Goodison will provide that.

"We lost a game we didn’t deserve to lose because of the way we played. If we play like that in the next 13 games we’re going to get a lot of points.

"There is no need to criticise the players. The first half performance (at White Hart Lane) was the most complete away performance we’ve had this season. Spurs knew the game was like a final in the league in terms of getting back to their aims in the summer.

"The financial investment they put into that squad was considerable, and we limited them to no shots on target for 60 minutes, controlled the game completely and created many chances to score. But it was one of those situations when you need to take those chances.

"The home side are always going to have a bit more momentum or threat at some point, and when it happened we switched off and conceded in a situation which was rare for our standards."

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