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Koeman: Too much talk about some players

Manager’s pre-match comments ahead of Saturday’s fixture

Everton v Middlesbrough - Premier League
Ronald Koeman
Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Everton manager Ronald Koeman was in a feisty mood in his pre-match press conference ahead of the trip to Bournemouth on Saturday.

| We are LIVE at Finch Farm for Ronald Koeman's pre-AFC Bournemouth press conference!

Опубликовано Everton Football Club 22 сентября 2016 г.

He was first asked about how to stop players like West Ham United’s Dmitri Payet, who scored another wonderful free kick last night in the EFL Cup.

“Don’t make a fault (commit a foul). It’s always difficult, but it’s a quality of the player, you cannot stop this. It’s what’s nice in football, where you still have players who can make the most of the free kicks.

“Don’t give away easy fouls around the box, and if he scores off a free kick he has quality.”

Koeman then went into an injury update, starting with Romelu Lukaku.

"He did training separate to the group today and we expect him to train normally in the morning. If that happens, he will be fit for the weekend.

“Phil Jagielka is also okay, I rested him on Tuesday.

"Mo Besic is a long-term injury. James McCarthy has been doing running outside and Darron Gibson will do running in one week. Both players are not long-term and normally will be fit in two or three weeks."

The next question focused on his first loss as Everton manager, Tuesday against Norwich City.

“I was not happy with the result of course. I was comfortable with what they showed. It was not good enough because we didn’t score a goal, but I wasn’t disappointed with the work rate of the team.

“Sometimes you miss chances, it’s part of football. It’s Cup football, and you don’t get second chances. It’s a pity, but we need to accept and go on. We’ve had a good start to the season.”

“Against different ways of defending you need to be prepared. The problem wasn’t that we didn’t create opportunities, we simply did not score.”

On Saturday’s opponents AFC Bournemouth -

“Bournemouth are a strong team. They like to play football from the back. They are aggressive. They have players with qualities. They had a good season last year, and it’s going to be a difficult one, but that’s every game in the Premier League.”

More on the good start to the season -

“May be better than everybody expected. We have a strong team, and we keep working hard every day to improve. The quality players can make a difference, especially in the productivity we did not have on Tuesday.”

There has been some talk about a new contract for Romelu Lukaku, but Koeman wouldn’t be drawn in.

“No I don’t know, that’s not my job.”

He was then asked about how the six who rested on Tuesday were feeling about coming back on Saturday, and that question looked like it irritated Koeman -

“Why? Why this question? It’s too much focus on the players that played. I tried to put out the best XI, and do what I think was the best for this weekend. They need to give more competition to the rest of the players, normally we have two players in every position.

“There’s too much talking about these players, some had a very good game, and some did not have the productivity. I took notes about that, and this is not the place to discuss individual player performances.”

The final question was around midfielder Idrissa Gueye, if Koeman was surprised how well he was doing.

“I’m not surprised, because if I was surprised that would be strange, we signed what we did. The player’s adaptation didn’t take long.

“From the beginning, he is playing comfortably, puts a lot of energy on the pitch, he also has quality on the ball, and is a great signing.

“Of course he is a key player. This is only his second season in the Premier League. He can improve, he will be stronger and more clever, and that will come with experience.”