Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Mignolet saved Liverpool from defeat, says Martinez

SoccerNews in English Premier League 4 Oct 2015

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Everton manager Roberto Martinez felt his side deserved to beat Liverpool in Sunday’s Merseyside derby, crediting Simon Mignolet with rescuing a point for Liverpool.

The Toffees had to settle for a 1-1 draw with their rivals at Goodison Park after Romelu Lukaku’s goal cancelled out Danny Ings’ headed opener during a frantic finish to the first half.

Those goals came after Mignolet had made two stunning stops from Steven Naismith’s header and James McCarthy’s shot to prevent Everton from taking the lead and Martinez believes those moments were decisive in denying his side a rare derby win.

“I thought we did enough to get the three points,” he said. “We saw Mignolet have the best two moments of the game.

“I thought he was outstanding, especially with the first one to keep out Steven Naismith’s header – it was as good a save as you are going to see. The same with James McCarthy’s shot as well because his view was blocked. 

“We are disappointed with the goal we conceded from a dead ball situation, but I was extremely pleased with the way we reacted and performed. 

“I thought we looked even stronger in the second half. Every time we had the ball in their half we looked like creating something and we looked dangerous. There are too many positives to just highlight dropping two points at home. I didn’t think we had that little bit of luck or the little break you sometimes need in front of goal.”

Martinez also provided an update on the fitness of Seamus Coleman, who was not passed fit to play in the game and is now unlikely to be available for the Republic of Ireland during the international break.

“Seamus was desperate to play and he is desperate to play for Ireland,” Martinez said of the defender. “Medically he wasn’t fit – we hope to get him on the pitch soon.

“I doubt [he will be fit for Ireland]. He is not going to be ready in two or three days. We will be working with Ireland who we have a very good relationship with.”

Following the result, six of the last seven derbies have ended in draws, with Everton having only won one of the last 18 league meetings.

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