Everton showed a different side to their game to gut out a 1-0 home win against a resolute Cardiff City side this weekend, having previously proven their defensive credentials holding out Chelsea away as well. The Blues have now picked up four straight wins at Goodison Park, having conceded just once.
Speaking after the game, manager Marco Silva was not surprised with how things are coming together for his squad.
“I think we are creating a very, very good team spirit. For me, it is really important and I told our players how it is important to create something special in our dressing room.
“It is not just what I can see on the pitch – where it is most important, of course – but I can see what we are creating every day at Finch Farm.
“A fantastic team spirit, the fantastic way the players work – they are always open to work. Our players know to achieve something important, to achieve good results, we have to work really hard as a team and that is what we are doing.”
Cardiff made things interesting late in the game after Gylfi Sigurdsson had opened the scoring, but the Blues were able to clamp down defensively and maintain the clean sheet.
“The game was always open because Cardiff are strong on offensive set-pieces and with their long throws. In that moment [when Cardiff were hunting an equaliser] we were strong, we showed good maturity during the match, which is important.
“What I saw on the pitch was nothing different from what I expected, which was a tough match. We scored the first goal and after that we had enough chances to score a second and kill the match. We didn’t kill it, though, and until the end it was always open.
“But I am happy we achieved an important win and another three points. We deserved the three points, no doubts about that. We were always in control of the game.
“It is one more win and one more clean sheet, so it is good for us.”
Now comes one of the biggest challenges of his Everton career, with the away leg of the Merseyside Derby beckoning this coming weekend and Silva appears to be prepared already for the Liverpool test.
“What I can tell you is fear is not a word in our dressing room.”