Sean Dyche has welcomed the return of the pre-match coach greetings as he acknowledged the fans desire to play a part in the team’s survival bid.
The Toffees players have usually arrived at games by car during Dyche’s tenure but they will arrive at Goodison before Thursday’s huge match against Newcastle by coach after fans groups including the 1878s held talks with the club.
With Everton’s plight increasingly desperate the supporters want to play their part by creating the kind of boisterous atmosphere that roared the team to safety last season, postponing the protest march against the board that has taken place before every home game since February.
Dyche has yet to experience one of the coach greetings as Everton boss but is happy to accommodate the fans and allow them to try and make a difference.
“It was well-documented last season [how influential the the fans were]. A couple of the fan groups have mentioned bringing the welcome back, and I have got massive respect for them. Purely because of what I have seen and heard from the fans, home and away since I have been here. They want to play their part and try to help make a difference.
“Beyond that, we want the team to play their part. We are looking for the team to make a difference. If the fans can continue the support they have provided, which has been fantastic, then I respect that totally.
“[The coach greeting] helps to create an atmosphere. But like I say, the focus remains on the whistle blowing because that support alone can’t win you a game. You have to make sure you are in the right frame of mind, anyway, but if the fans can help play their part, then great.”
Everton go into the game in the relegation zone after the weekend draw at Crystal Palace made it five games without a win.
Dyche says his side need to make a fast start against the Magpies if they are to end that winless run, as well as taking advantage of the opportunities that come their way.
“We know we must start well in every game. We have in a lot since I have been here. We have to continue that but also add to it. What I talk about is in terms of consistency throughout a game. We have had strong periods in games but haven’t got our noses in front or taken our chances.
“You have to keep that consistent performance throughout the 90 minutes, that’s still a working process. We are looking to start the game well and will of course be ably supported by our fans.”
Dyche also revealed that Dominic Calvert-Lewin came through the Palace game unscathed on what was his first competitive appearance since his first game in charge in early February.
“It’s good to see Dom back out there, that’s for sure. He got more minutes in than what we thought, the tempo of the game was slightly lower than some, so we could allow that to happen.
“He felt good, obviously, and we were monitoring it during the game. He’s recovered from it well in the sense of the physical side of it and the recovery period. He looked sharp again today in training.”