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Baines explains appearance record

Everton’s Leighton Baines has put his impressive appearance record down to rest, good discipline and luck.

After playing the full 90 minutes in Sunday’s defeat to Chelsea, the England international became just the sixth outfield player to complete every single minute of a Premier League season twice.

Baines joins Wayne Bridge, Gary McAllister, Gary Pallister, Gareth Southgate and current Everton team-mate Sylvain Distin in achieving the feat – and he said one of the most important factors is doing the right things off the pitch.

“It’s a tough league and it does become a long old season once you get through the Christmas period and into February, it does start to catch up with you a bit,” the 28-year-old told Everton’s official website.
“It’s about living right then, taking your rest if you get it and doing all the right things off the pitch to try to keep you in a position where you can keep getting out there on the pitch.
“You work hard every day when you come in, you trust the physios and the things they tell you to do; the fitness coaches, I try to abide by the rules that they set.
“And you get the results in the end and I managed to stay fit. There’s obviously a luck element as well, steering clear of bad tackles or whatever.
“But it’s a nice little achievement. These little things are always nice.”
Despite losing 2-1 to Chelsea on Sunday, in what was David Moyes’ last game as Everton manager, Baines said he was not too downhearted.
“It’s football and the way it goes,” he said.
“If we’d gone ahead in the game we would have tried to see it out. Unfortunately in football, it sometimes kicks you in the teeth when teams go up the other end and score.”

Tue 21 May, 2013
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