Roberto Martinez declared that he “couldn’t be prouder” after seeing his Everton side come from behind to beat Aston Villa 2-1 on Saturday.
Leandro Bacuna put Villa ahead against the run of play in the opening period after Aiden McGeady had hit the post for the hosts, but goals from Steven Naismith and Kevin Mirallas after the break saw Everton pick up a deserved three points.
And manager Martinez could not hide his delight at his charges’ second-half recovery.
“From our point of view, it was the most satisfying win of the season,” he said.
“You could see in the first half we were very, very cagey, very responsible with our performance and wary of the things that we’ve been working on. That stopped our normal self of getting on the ball and having the fluency that we normally have.
“When you get a situation where you hit the post and then you concede a goal at the other end, it becomes a real test of character. I thought the way we reacted in the second half was one of the most pleasing aspects that you can have as a manager.
“I couldn’t be prouder with the second-half display.
“I feel that we are a team that never accepts defeat, has an incredible knack of facing adversity in football in the right way and I felt that we created enough chances to win the game.”
Mirallas’ winner came from a 25-yard free-kick in the 85th minute, and Martinez added: “To win it with that moment of brilliance from Kevin in a dead-ball situation is even more pleasing.
“(It was) a real good effort from the squad, great character and it’s the moment to get really excited about the end of the season after that sort of performance.”