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Stoke City (H) Fri 26 Dec 2014, 15:00, Barclays Premier League

'We Have To Win Something'

by Adam Clark @efc_adamclark

Now is the time for this generation of Everton players to win a trophy, according to skipper Phil Neville.

The former Manchester United man is desperate to add to his haul of 10 major honours by lifting his first since moving to Goodison Park and knows this season's FA Cup could be his best chance yet.

"We've got a nucleus and the core players have been at the Club a long time now," the 35-year-old told evertontv. "We've gained really good experience in the league, in the cup competitions and in Europe and we've got nothing to show for it so far. It's important now to put that right.

"I'm desperate to win, I'm desperate to lift a trophy as Everton captain and I've said it a number of times that I see the greats walking around the Club, those who are held in the highest esteem, and rightly so. This game is about winning trophies and about winning medals and this Club has gone too long without winning a trophy."

Last month brought the 10th anniversary of David Moyes' appointment as manager and while Neville knows the Scot will be desperate to mark his decade in charge with a trophy, he says everyone would be lifted should the Club's 17-year wait for success be brought to a halt.  

The skipper also knows overcoming city rivals Liverpool to reach the final is no easy feat and understands exactly what victory this weekend would mean to the entire Everton fraternity.  

"It's a massive game," he said. "Since the draw was made, even though we've had three league games and a quarter-final replay against Sunderland, I think it's been the game everyone's mind has been on. I know we've been playing it down and saying we're concentrating on the league but it's been at the forefront of my mind, I can't lie to you about that. It's going to be a great occasion.  

"I think games between Everton and Liverpool are magical anyway but being at Wembley - I was a kid growing up for the '86 final and the '89 final and you just remember them as being magical occasions for the city and you'd hope that one day you'd play in a game of that magnitude. Saturday is that.

"In terms of what we want to get from the game, we want the FA Cup, so we're hoping this isn't going to be our biggest game of the season - we're hoping that will be the final.

"The manager has been here 10 years so you think to yourself, is the script written? But it's just as important for the chairman, it's important for the supporters and the players feel it the same way. It's important for the club in general that we start winning trophies or we start having more days like this.

“To be fair, under the gaffer we've had a lot of special days and we just hope that Saturday is one of two special days left in the season."

Everton go into the game on a run which has seen them suffer defeat just twice in their last 17 outings.  

Neville admits there has been a noticeable swagger about the Blues of late and doesn’t expect it to neglect them on the biggest stage.

"I've got total trust in my teammates and total trust because since the turn of the year there's been an air of confidence, bordering on arrogance really around the place that's like bring anyone on," he said. "When you're going on to the pitch with that kind of confidence and belief, we're a tough nut to crack. We're playing with a spirit and togetherness that is embedded in this club and I think we're ready for an experience like Saturday."

 

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