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

Alcaraz Bow Pleases Boss


Roberto Martinez says another plus point to take out of the confidence-boosting 4-1 win over Accrington Stanley was the individual performance of Antolin Alcaraz.

The Paraguay defender got his first action in a Blue shirt, appearing as a half-time substitute for Sylvain Distin in Wednesday's pre-season outing.

The former Wigan man watched on from the sidelines against Austria Vienna at the weekend but Martinez felt the Store First Stadium was the right place to ease the 30-year-old into proceedings.

“It's important he got that first game and got to know his teammates,” Martinez explained to evertontv.

“It feels like he has been with us for a long, long time and he plays with that maturity. That is down to the group of players that we have who have welcomed the new signings really well.

“It's pleasing to see Antolin settle in really quickly. That's always a nice sign of a dressing room.”

Everton were backed by 1,600 fans at Accrington – almost half of the game’s total attendance.

The Coppice End terrace was awash with blue shirts and Martinez was quick to thank those who made the journey from Merseyside.

“It's incredible,” declared the Spaniard. “We had a big support back in Vienna and it was great to see so many passionate faces.

“It's great to have that interaction with the players.”

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