Frank Lampard insists he “of course” believes Everton can stay in the Premier League following the Toffees’ 3-2 defeat by Burnley, which leaves them a point above the relegation zone.
Everton are in grave danger of being relegated from the Premier League for the first time in their history and Wednesday night’s result has put them very much on the back foot, especially considering they were leading the Clarets at the break.
Manager Lampard was put on the spot and asked if he still believes in his ability to keep Everton in the top flight following the defeat and issued a determined response.
On the result itself though he bemoaned his players’ lack of composure in front of goal, telling Sky Sports: “Well from 2-1 we should win the game, and we should win the game by more goals.
“We are not clinical enough on numerous chances and counter-attacks or time we had in their half and getting in good areas and not being clinical enough. And at that point, you always leave the game open and then we made mistakes for their goals.”
Asked if confidence is to blame for Everton’s struggles, he added: “I’m not sure it matters what it is, it is what it is and the players have to work and fight. If it is a lack of confidence, all I know is we have to fight and keep working because we are in a battle.
“And if we didn’t know it tonight we know it now. We are still above Burnley in the table so we have to keep fighting and looking forward but we’re disappointed not to win from a winning position tonight.
“All the teams around us are in similar [positions], you look at the results and it’s why we are where we are in the table because results for a long period, and it’s the same for the other teams around us.
“The reality is you don’t normally string a lot of wins together and move freely up the table, the Premier League doesn’t work that way. So we have to not get caught up in the words and look to the next game and keep working and preparing for the next game because if we do make mistakes like we did tonight we need to be ready to fight.”
Lampard was also asked if there is more pressure on him than the other managers around him given he’s in charge of a bigger club in Everton but dismissed this notion. “Maybe, but it shouldn’t be in absolute football terms,” he said.
“The reality is what it is, so we are no different to Burnley, Watford or Norwich or Leeds or the teams around us. That’s just where we are at as a football club. The players don’t need to listen or read or get involved in anything other than turning up tomorrow and getting right for Saturday and trying to get the right result to keep us in the league.”
Burnley took the lead at Turf Moor through Nathan Collins before Everton mounted a comeback, netting twice from the penalty spot, with Richarlison adding to his goal tally.
But the Clarets returned from the break a different side and equalised through Jay Rodriguez on the hour mark before Maxwel Cornet completed the comeback, bagging three vital points for Burnley and moving his side to within a point of Everton and safety.