Frank Lampard has reminded his players that the job is not yet done and they cannot afford to lose focus despite the morale-boosting win over Manchester United last time out.
The 1-0 victory lifted the mood around Goodison after defeat at Burnley three days before had left spirits at rock-bottom and staring relegation in the face.
The Toffees were not in action over the weekend so have had 10 days to recover and reflect on the result. Burnley picked up a point at West Ham in that time so are now three points behind Everton, though that gap can be doubled with victory at Goodison.
Lampard though is wary of the players assuming one win is enough to end their relegation fears and that just because they are at Goodison, where they have won five out of seven under Lampard, another victory is a given.
He has been keen to remind them of just how much work still lies ahead of they are to avoid the drop, starting with the visit of the Foxes.
“Absolutely I have [warned about focus], because a 10-day gap can be beneficial in some ways, but one of the potential negatives can be to make us forget the absolute dedication and focus that went into getting the Manchester United result, and thinking that Goodison is a place where we just have good results.
“It doesn’t work like that. So that’s the message I’ve made to the players overs the last couple of days and in the build up to the game. That the things we do at Goodison to win the games, it is important we do them every game.
“The reaction will be in the performance, won’t it? But in terms of the players, yeah, listening has been good, understanding has been good, so we will see in the performance tomorrow.
“You can stare at the fixture list all day. I do know that it’s in our hands and that’s the most important thing for us. But I had an idea before Burnley [on points needed], and then the Burnley results changes it for us completely. It would have looked completely different with a different result so I’m more focused on game by game.”
Burnley caused a surprise by sacking manager Sean Dyche last week after nearly a decade in charge.
It was widely believed that an experience boss like Dyche was the best chance the Clarets had of staying up. Some pundits suggested that handed Everton a huge advantage, particularly as an appointment is not imminent, but that is something dismissed by Lampard.
“I think, or I just assume because I don’t know, that the change was made for an uplift, because this is the Premier League and it’s business, and it’s too big an idea for a club to be relegated.
“And also the fans and for what it means to everyone at the club so I don’t think it would have been a decision made lightly. But it’s really important to get across what a great job Sean has done because I don’t want it to look like [I’m saying] they’re going to get better now. That’s why the answer is I don’t know.
“But I assume it was done to get some sort of uplift and that remains to be seen, but again it’s important to us to realise: the situation is very clear, the table is very clear - if we do our job well enough we’ll stay in this league.
“And we can’t control what Burnley do, whether it’s Sean Dyche or someone else in charge, and that’s a fact.”