Marco Silva was impressed by the hard work and effort his Everton side put in to come away with a 0-0 draw from Stamford Bridge earlier today.
Speaking after the game, the manager praised his stand-in central defender Yerry Mina, starting in place of Kurt Zouma - the French defender was ineligible to play against his parent club Chelsea.
“He did everything I expected. It was his first official match in maybe three or four months and he showed his quality.
”He is very good on the ball and he is a player who will give us quality on the ball. Even without the ball he did what we planned, our defensive organisation and process.
“I think he did really well.”
Silva added some words on goalie Jordan Pickford and his side’s defending overall.
“Jordan’s performance is good news for England [going into the international break] and good news for us.
“All of the players worked hard and fought for the result. We could do better in the final third but in the future we will do better, for sure.”
Despite the Blues looking resolutely defensive, Silva insisted he wasn’t trying to park the bus.
“We can grow like we want to grow as a team and we can challenge when we play this type of match. We had one goal. We came here to try to win the match.
“We know they are strong and they can create problems and the first half was amazing because we showed everything; organisation, good shape, team spirit, a fantastic attitude and belief in ourselves.
”We knew before the match it would be difficult to play here. We planned to come here to challenge them and I think this is the first time they didn’t score one goal in one match this season.”
Chelsea are unbeaten this season, and looked like it today too.
“It was a tough match. We showed very, very good things. Our aim is to challenge and have the belief to come away with three points. Today we made a good step.
“I think we deserved a point, especially from what we did in the first half. They are creating chances home and away, but we were organised. It’s the first time they haven’t scored at home this season. In the first half we were very, very good. Our shape was very good and our players did everything we asked.
“Chelsea created one chance from a free-kick in the first half. In the second, it was different. They put Hazard behind Morata and started to create more problems. I think we didn’t do enough with the ball in the second half. We could do better with set pieces, too, but we will improve, for sure, and I think it’s a good point for us.”
After the Blues had struggled earlier in the season defensively, they have been much more solid recently, the defence picking up their third clean sheet of this season.