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Sean Dyche rallies Everton again after latest points deduction

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 11 Apr 2024

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Sean Dyche has called on Everton to show the same positive reaction to their second points deduction of the season as the first.

Having seen November’s 10-point penalty for breaching spending rules reduced to six on appeal, the Toffees were penalised a further two points this week, dropping them back to within two points of the Premier League relegation zone.

Everton’s best spell of the season came shortly after the initial sanction, with the Toffees’ four-match winning run including a 2-0 success against Monday’s opponents Chelsea.

Manager Dyche said: “The last time we got a knock everyone pulled together, and I think that’s important to remind yourself. The fans were terrific in a new reality. There’s another one now.

“Everyone went, ‘hang on a minute, the badge is more important than anything’, and I still feel the same. Myself, the players, the staff all pulling together, and the fans as well to make sure we look after ourselves and we look after the club.

“The restart is Chelsea. A reaction to the news is important, a positive reaction. The time for fault and blame is gone. It’s the way society works, everyone wants fault and blame for everything but we’ve got to park it.

“What’s done is done. We’ve just got to stay in line, stay connected, and take on the next challenge. The club’s had a few knocks recently, let’s all pull together and get it done.”

Everton will appeal against the latest sanction and, while Dyche does not want to dwell on what has happened, a sense of injustice remains.

A perceived lack of consistency has frustrated club and fans alike, and Dyche said: “I think it’s difficult because of the confusion.

“I don’t think it’s just Evertonians. I travel a lot and football fans generally come up to me and say, ‘What’s that all about?’ They’re confused by it, we’re a bit confused by it, I think that’s fair to say.

“But, whether we are or we’re not, there’s still a job in hand and the focus has to go back to the current situation.

“Therefore our focus is on the next round of games coming up. I spoke to the players after it, reminded the staff about it, the truth of the moment, which is to stay focused on the job in hand.”

Ongoing doubt, meanwhile, surrounds the club’s proposed takeover by 777 Partners, with a further delay reported this week.

Dyche sees no reason to panic, saying: “I’m certainly not in that world but I can only imagine buying a football club’s not an easy business. There must be so many different things to go through and so many checks that have to be done.

“It’s taking more time, that’s the way it goes. I certainly am not involved in that level of what we do here. The rest is just a wait-and-see situation.”

The points deduction made last weekend’s win over Burnley, their first in the league since December, look even more important, with goal-shy Dominic Calvert-Lewin netting his second in as many games.

There is a fitness doubt over the striker for Monday’s game after he missed training on Thursday with a hamstring issue.

But Dyche expects him to be fit, saying: “He’s just got a minor niggly hamstring, which we’re just being ultra careful with. But he thinks he’s on top of it and the medical team are as well.”

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