Everton played the last quarter of the game a man down after Lucas Digne was sent off for a professional foul, but held on to beat Huddersfield Town 1-0 for just their third away win of the season, and their second clean sheet on the road.
Speaking after the game, manager Marco Silva was relieved but proud of his charges.
“It was important to win, the season asks you to show strong character when you are not in your best moment. We showed that character, not just with 10 men.
“We started the game strong and fast. It was not the perfect performance from either team but we deserved the three points.
“It was our obligation to come here and give a strong answer. When a new coach arrives, even in the position Huddersfield are, it gives new hope to the club and players.
“They had not played one match [under Siewert] for us to analyse them. We prepared for each thing they could do and did well.
“It was an important result and now is the moment for the players to rest and then prepare for a tough match for us at home [vs Wolves] with our fans on Saturday.”
After a somewhat cagey first half, the second stanza started with both sides trading half-chances before Leighton Baines was taken off after picking up a knock, and Digne came on.
“We scored during the first half but there were no more big chances for either team before half-time. I told our boys they needed to start the second half well. We had a very good chance with Tom to score the second goal and kill the game.
“One of our goals was to have a clean sheet, also, it was important. Then with 10 men we had a compact block, with our two lines of four men and a striker.
”Jordan made a good save from the free-kick and again when they had a dangerous moment [Kachunga’s header]. We were compact and had good organisation.”
Idrissa Gueye’s future as an Evertonian remains up for debate as Paris St Germain ramp up their attempts at getting him signed before the close of the transfer window tomorrow, but Silva maintained that there was no new updates on the midfielder. The Senegalese international was left out of the squad yesterday but the manager insisted it was for a minor knock he had picked up against Millwall over the weekend.
“He had a minor problem with his groin. We tried to be honest with all of you and with our fans. After the match I tried to find out if something new has happened because I expected your question and there’s nothing new.
“He has a minor problem with his groin. No new offers and hopefully he can continue with us. I don’t know about a new offer or not. Nobody has told me. We were in the hotel last night preparing for the game, fully focused on the match.
“I know the market is open until January 31, it’s always tough for us, but about the new offer, £30million, nothing came true. I asked 10 minutes ago if there was something new, but there is not.”