Monday 5 December 2016

Gareth Barry accepts Everton fans' frustrations with Goodison Park struggles

Published 25/01/2016 | 08:16

Gareth Barry wants Everton to play through and win back the fans' love
Gareth Barry wants Everton to play through and win back the fans' love

Gareth Barry admits Everton are a soft touch at home and fans' frustrations are more than justified.

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The 2-1 defeat to Swansea on Sunday means the Toffees have won just three times in the Barclays Premier League at Goodison Park this season - all against bottom-three sides - and have only 10 victories in the last 18 months.

They also have the worst home defensive record in the Premier League, with 22 goals conceded in 12 matches three worse than any of their rivals and eight behind bottom-of-the-table Aston Villa.

The team were booed off at half-time and again at the final whistle, and while manager Roberto Martinez has tried to defend his squad Barry admits the players have to expect the abuse.

"The results haven't been what they were and the home form is nowhere near what it should be," he said.

"We are not using Goodison Park to how it can be used.

"The players are aware the fans are frustrated but it is down to us to play through that.

"Teams are picking up on that and coming here and realising that Everton can be got at in front of their own fans.

"It is down to us to do something about that and get back to something where we are tough to beat here but not taking away our attacking play, which is really good.

"We've created a lot of chances but we are conceding miles too many goals and conceded another two at home, and it's not good enough."

Defeat left Everton 12th in the table but the result was the worst kind of preparation for a potentially season-defining Capital One Cup semi-final second leg at Manchester City on Wednesday.

"We have big games coming up in cup competitions (they also travel to League Two Carlisle in the fourth round of the FA Cup on Saturday)," Barry added.

"The ideal world going into a game like Wednesday would be with a win.

"There is nothing better than going into games on a winning run, when you are feeling confident, but that's where we are at the moment.

"We have got to go into a League Cup semi-final on the back of a defeat.

"We focus on a huge game against Man City, and hopefully we can get the fans positive again and then return to the league.

"There is still a lot of football to be played in the league, but with the players we've got and the ability we have it means we can go on a run until the end of the season."

Press Association

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